• by Barbara McCaughey • Sunburst teachings provide a framework of “right activity” for me. Cooking is sort of a combination of the Sunburst spiritual Paths of Work and Recreation, and an activity that needs to be done in my family, but one that I also enjoy. I made the decision many years ago to keep my kitchen free of many of the time saving gadgets available to help us “whip up a meal” in no time, instead preferring simple basic tools that would allow me to slow down and infuse the food with the one ingredient that works for every recipe—love.
A couple of years ago, I awoke on a Sunday morning a few hours before I was to prepare and serve the brunch that follows our Sunday group meditation. As soon as I opened my eyes, for some strange reason, I was straining to remember the name of a comic actor. Even though his name was familiar to me, I just couldn’t jog it free from my memory banks. Although this was a pesky little thought that bothered me a bit, it was too insignificant to wake anybody so I just tried to put it out of my mind.
I started preparing the food and time seemed to go by very quickly. When there was less than one hour left before it needed to be delivered, I was disappointed with how some of the dishes were coming out, even though I had expected a good result. The time began to weigh on me a bit, and I started to speed up and try different spices and ingredients to improve the flavor.
Realizing that I was losing my center, I stopped for a moment and said, “Divine Mother, you’re the cook.” I was going to continue: “Please work through my hands,” but before I finished the word “cook,” the name “Jim Carrey” seemed to fly through all of creation and crash land in my brain!
I started laughing. I felt as though Spirit’s sense of humor was communicating approval of my stopping to remember where my life and abilities come from. One silly little desire was fulfilled in that moment of quiet reflection, but of course our greatest desire is fulfilled there as well.
One translation of the Dead Sea Scrolls includes these words:
I will bless the Creator’s name in all I do. Before I move hand or foot, whenever I go out or come in, when I sit down and when I rise, even when lying on my bed I will chant in praise.
My lips shall praise the Divine as I sit at the table which is set for all, and before I lift my hand to partake of any nourishment from the delicious fruits of the earth.
When fear and terror come, and there is only anguish and distress, I will still bless and thank the Creator for all their wondrous deeds, and meditate upon their power, and lean upon their mercies all day long.
For I know that in their hand is justice for all that live, and all their works are true. So when trouble comes, or salvation, I praise God all the same.