THERE ARE A LOT OF REASONS NOT TO FEEL OK
-an island of plastic in the ocean
-climate change as the newest form of colonization
-indoor palm trees
THERE ARE STILL REASONS TO FEEL CONNECTED
For those of us who are concerned with social and environmental justice, nutritional self-care can seem like luxury, an indulgence, in the face of so many crises. But food holds and connects a whole host of battles. Was the life of the soil that grew this carrot amended or destroyed in its production? What watershed fed this plant? Who labored to grow and harvest this hemp and how were they treated for their work? How did this apple arrive at my table and at what cost? Who has access to fresh greens and how does institutionalized racism and class affect this access? As we acknowledge that the food we eat becomes a part of our bodies, our cells, the act of eating becomes a form of communion with all of these concerns. We can make choices that cause more suffering or we can take actions of respect and care.
In the book The autobiography of a blue eyed Devil author Inga Muscio makes the distinction between the world that we live in and the universe we are a part of. The world she describes as the place of human relations, the location of so many traumas- racism, sexual violence- to name a few. The universe is the place where soil meets sky. It is the site of both miracles and tragedies, but it is where life is lived in connection. Muscio’s argument is that in order to fully face the world, we must first be grounded in the universe. We will never be effective, self-sustaining activists. teachers and learners, if we don’t feel connected to the source of our lives. And I believe that one of the simplest, most intimate and immediate way to connect with this universe is through the food that we eat. To eat is to partake in the miracle of bodies and matter.
Not all imbalances in the world can be solved with food, but its a great place to start. Eating organic whole foods is better for your physical and mental health but is also a gesture of respect- for your life, your body and to the natural systems we are a part of.