Some food is beautiful. The colors and lines of the dish call to the observer, beckoning them to take a closer look. The soft murmurs of a "meat 'n' potatoes" dinner, the bold cry of cilantro lime chicken nestled in among black beans and corn, each meal tells a story.
Our food tells the story of our lives. In days gone by, wives and mothers spent most of the day preparing the meals that nourished their families. Bread came from the oven, produce from the garden and meat from a local butcher. Meals meant sitting with loved ones, resting your body and mind from the labors of the day and feeding your appetites, both physical and spiritual. No one would have dreamed of eating cold leftovers from a foam container while standing over a sink and checking email.
A meal contains not just meat or produce, not just herbs or spices, but love. The love of a parent for a child, one partner for another, or the love of one's self echo from our plates and forks. The care with which we feed ourselves and our loved ones speaks volumes of our love. The most satisfying moment of a meal I've prepared for my family is not when I sit down to eat it, but when I see the look of contentment on their faces for the simple joys of eating. I love to cook and I cook for love.
We are not loving our bodies, minds and souls when we mindlessly shovel forkful after forkful, handful after handful of fried, artificially flavored, sugar laden processed foods into them. We are not loving our bodies when our every meal is made by someone in a polyester uniform and handed to us through a window.
Somewhere along the line we forgot that food can not only stop the grumbling in our stomachs, but can awaken our senses, take us back to favorite childhood memories, allow us to glimpse the warm sunshine and gentle rain from which it sprang.
Some food is beautiful, but all food can nourish our entire being, if we would just slow down and allow it.