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Don’t throw food away. November 24, 2013

Posted by ourfriendben in Reiki, Reiki wisdom.
Tags: , , , , , ,

Today, I read the saddest single sentence I have ever encountered. I wasn’t expecting to read it; I was scrolling down through Yahoo’s homepage and came upon an article about how people from abroad, both visitors and new residents, view America and Americans.

Of course, I couldn’t resist reading this. I was expecting to see the usual comments about how slovenly Americans are, in their sweatpants and hoodies or ill-fitting jeans and tee-shirts or worse. Or snide remarks about American obesity. Or shocked remarks about Americans’ spending habits, their addiction to malls, their obsessive shopping. Or about their eating habits, between fast food as a replacement for meals and monstrous portions as in “Supersize Me.” Or all-too-often true remarks about American ignorance, cultural blindness, and insularity.

What I wasn’t expecting to see was the comment I found, from an anonymous person obviously now living the typical American lifestyle but still aware of its shortcomings: “My garbage disposal eats better than most of the children of the world.”

Why anyone would have a garbage disposal, or would waste food, is beyond my understanding. Composting returns food odds and ends back to the soil to enrich it so it can produce more healthy food. At my home, we have three compost bins, a spinning composter, and an earthworm composter, plus chickens to eat any leftover scraps. Absolutely nothing goes to waste.

As Pope Francis so trenchantly put it, “Throwing food away is like stealing from the tables of the poor, the hungry!” How dare we waste food when people go hungry? How dare we go on autopilot instead of considering the consequences of our own actions? How could we, as Reiki people, not be vigilant about recycling, buying everything used, not wasting our earth’s precious resources when others are wanting?

Instead, let us follow the example of Usui Founder, who rushed to the aid of those whose lives were disrupted or devastated by the great Tokyo earthquake. Let us do what we can to help those in need by not irresponsibly, thoughtlessly, throwing food away.

As we approach Thanksgiving, a holiday that offers us the opportunity to both express our gratitude and celebrate abundance, the waste of food should be foremost on our minds. How can we live out Usui Founder’s example? Donate or volunteer at a soup kitchen or homeless shelter, invite lonely older people, single people, disadvantaged people, or simply isolated people to share in our own celebration, reach out to neighbors, family members, or friends with whom we’ve been out of touch, try to bring comfort to abandoned animals at your local shelter. Spread some joy!

Just for today, don’t be heartless.

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1. Huma - November 25, 2013

When I first came to the US I spent thanks giving with the family who had volunteered to pick me up at the airport on a holiday weekend—-the most appalling thing I saw was the waste—I never recovered from it even though soon after I learnt that 20 mil people used to starve in the US at that time—many more now. There was no mechanism to feed hungry people. I know this has changed somewhat now and is not exactly exemplary in other countries but there was almost no recognition of poverty in the US and there probably still isn’t.

The most horrifying thing that I’ve encountered is people who refuse to eat leftovers. Thank God, I haven’t encountered them often, but I have encountered them. These are the people who won’t get (or bring) a container to take home leftovers when they go out to eat, and who throw out everything that isn’t consumed in a single meal. I think this is a dreadful sin. Those of us who are privileged to eat out shouldn’t stuff ourselves, but eat half our oversized portions and take the other half home to eat later. And when we cook at home, we should savor every bite in the knowledge that so many others can’t imagine enjoying our abundance, and eat our leftovers again and again with respect for those who have none.

2. EverEvolvingSoul - November 26, 2013

Reblogged this on Energy's Soul Mission.

3. Nadya - November 30, 2013

I recall hearing something similar on NPR (National Public Radio) awhile ago – and also thought ‘at LEAST compost it!’ There are a number of good programs in our community with a soup kitchen, food bank, etc. And several programs getting FRESH local produce (Farmers Market vendors can dontate their unsold produce, the Food Bank truck is there to pick it up – I believe they get tax credit for the donations) …
We’ve HAD a community garden, but the hosting venue has pulled out, so next year is uncertain (& here in the Pacific NW, many crops grow year round!)
With a CSA share & garden of my own, I ‘budget’ my food as well as I can, & have a compost pile for the things that don’t go into my soup/ stock jar ….
My dad was from farm stock & part Cherokee. He composted back in the 50s & 60s, long before it was popular among mainstream culture, I think with awareness ‘that’s the way we’ve always done it!’

Hi Nadya! Thanks for all this inspiring information. I hope your community gets its community garden back! And wow, I’m awed that your father was composting in the ’50s. I though only Ruth Stout was composting back then! But then, I’m always awed and humbled by all Native Americans’ passionate and intimate connection to the earth. If only we all emulated their example, the world would be a much better place!

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