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to lay hands on the body of the world

January 19, 2011

I am currently taking a Sunday evening class at my church on the “Spiritual Practice of Cooking, Eating and Gardening.” That’s right, on one of my two free evenings a week, I’m taking a class…on cooking. While you may think I’m obsessed and a bit off my rocker, it approaches the idea of food and how we relate to it in an entirely different way than culinary school. Instead of technique, it’s about spirit and touch and smell and community. It’s what the act of cooking and eating does to our lives and our hearts, about how it knits together families and friends, and all the beautiful and sacred ways that it connects to the spirit of God that stirs inside us.


The woman teaching the class, Anja, is a co-owner of a beautiful local organic farm. Her perspective as one who works closely with the land, with what it produces and then turns to teach other how to cook it and care for it is refreshing and lovely. She also shares a fondness for soup, Barbara Brown Taylor and quotes from books, which is what inspired me to blog this morning. I came across this thought she shared with us this past week and it’s helping me to find a focus and ethos for why I bake, why I cook and why food matters so much to me.

“To cook is to lay hands on the body of the world…to love to cook is to feel — to want to feel — that flesh itself, to be open and vulnerable to what the touch entails, a tremor of connection to the heart of what we eat.” – “Loving to Cook,” by John Thorne

Food matters so much to me because it’s a love language; it’s a way of touching those around me in the most basic, necessary and connected way. When I make something for another person, it binds us. Through my hands and their mouths and stomachs, it forges a sacred connection and pathway for our lives to mingle, if only for that moment or bite.

And it’s enough for me. It will always be enough.

What is inspiring you this week?

[photo credit here]

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 19, 2011 11:00 pm

    That sounds like such an amazing class! I can see why you’ve added it to your already full plate. Cooking/kitchen pun not intended.

  2. Aban Jasoomani permalink
    January 20, 2011 11:43 am

    i full agree!
    it is a JOY to be able to cook & feed someone (:

  3. January 23, 2011 2:41 pm

    i’ve always wanted to wear a white dress and run barefoot in a field of tall grass like that. i live in vancouver so no such fields exist, your picture allows me to imagine im there 🙂

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