Embracing Playfulness in Eating

Immersing yourself entirely in the act of eating can be deeply relaxing, especially when you infuse it with a sense of playfulness. Momoe elaborates on her journey of embracing playful eating, emphasizing the importance of approaching each meal with a fresh perspective and a genuine curiosity about the foods she consumes.

Practicing eating with playfulness over accuracy

Nick: Most of us eat two or three times a day, we're often snacking, we're eating on the go. So it's something we do every day, but we don't optimize the experience, or we don't give the experience enough care and time.

So this is obviously what you're promoting, too. I think Suzuki said this, like when you eat, just eat. And when you do that, first there's some resistance with your mind, and you're jumping from all these thoughts and what you have to do and what happened yesterday or whatever.

But we practice, you can almost lose time in eating slowly. So it's not something serious is it? It's something almost relaxing, and you actually describe it to be playful, while eating, and to use fresh eyes.

So I think we should emphasize, it's not like you have to meditate while you're eating, and it's something serious, you describe it as something playful, so would you like to touch on that?

Momoe: Sure. Playfulness is really important as Zen practitioners or anyone. We tend to think things seriously, or too seriously, and I am a person who takes things seriously. I love meditation, I love any kind of mindful practices. I always find it really difficult to make it a habit.

So after doing some meditation course or something, I can do meditation every morning properly, sitting properly, maybe for one month, and then after a while I usually do this. I felt that oh, well, like I eat every day, twice or three times. And I can practice meditation through eating. It's something that I can do as low.

So I started eating with playfulness. With having fresh eyes, this structure is supposed like I'm drinking hot water, and you can be drinking this hot water as like your first time, so that you may be aware of many things through drinking just hot water temperature. Where this water came from—river, cloud, rain, and it goes back to the ocean. This water has this cycle, and I'm living in this cycle.

And I'm sensing it how wonderful that I have five senses, how wonderful that I don't have to command my internal organs to process it. Without me knowing it, my internal organ does everything that I need.

So what a miracle it is that you can be not knowing it. So those playfulness is really important than knowing accurately where this came from. You don't have to know maybe, you can, but you don't have to. So playfulness then accuracy.

Nick: Playfulness over accuracy. I see the wander in you, you're like oh, just imagining what was involved with this cup of water. How did it get here? And there is a cycle and there is a journey of that water, but it doesn't end with you, it still continues with you.

So we don't think about that at all, I don't, but you do. But maybe I'll start to think about that now after this discussion. And of course, as children we’re told don't play with your food. But I liked this idea of having almost like a playful mind. Oh, yeah, seeing things anew again, with your food and being slight in all of the food, how did it get to me?

So I guess that makes you more present and being present is very powerful. So would you say this practice has helped you be more present in other areas of your life?

Momoe: Totally, 100%.

Nick: Yeah, I'm sure it has.

Momoe: This is not one time practice, but it's a lifelong practice as we eat every day, till the end of our life. So this lifelong practice is helping me as a practitioner as one of the practitioners, I can apply the sense of wonder, or how miracle that this functions like this. So this sense of appreciation, nothing is granted. This kind of attitude is helping me to tune into joy and bliss on all front in my life.