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Balance and Harmony
Arriving at food means that we become aware before a meal or snack that food has come into our personal space.
This sounds simple, but actually it's more difficult that you might think. Food is so abundant in our society that we're scarcely aware of it and we can be eating and not even know that we've made a choice to eat.
The CAMP System trains you to be mindful even before the meal begins. This mindfulness helps you to slow down, appreciate your food more and eat only what you really need.
PRACTICE: 30 Seconds of Silence
Before you begin eating any meal or snack, become silent for 30 seconds. During this 30 seconds:
- Take a close look at the food. Notice colors, shapes and arrangements.
- Name to yourself all the foods you see.
- Name to yourself all the plants and animals that are represented in the food. Add a "thank-you" to each plant or animal for its sacrifice.
- Bring your face close to the food and detect all the odors in the food. Move your nose above each food and mindfully enjoy the aromas you sense.
- Think about the human effort it took to get the food to you. How many people were really involved? Don't forget the people who prepared the food just moments before.
- Imagine yourself eating each food attentively and on purpose.
If you do this activity seriously, you will have truly arrived at your meal. This sets the stage for you to continue your mindfulness during your eating.
CAMP Basics > Mindful Eating
Use this simple sentiment to start any meal or snack.
May I accept this food with deepest gratitude, mindful of the many sacrifices and efforts to bring it here today.
May I honor this food by taking only what I need, by putting it to use to the greater good, and by eating it with attention and appreciation.
And by honoring this food, may I honor myself as I strive to live in dignity and grace.
This is an entirely new way of looking and interacting with food. I am just beginning to use this approach to mindful eating and I feel positive about my outcome with this new journey I am undertaking.
Thanks for helping me to look at food differently
---Pat, in Vancouver
I discarded about 1/5 with all my meals for the past two days and eating mindfully, and I have been satisfied with much less food.