It is Zero Waste Week in parts of our world. And I’m staring at tonight’s supper-to-be: frozen chicken – 12 pieces neatly nestled in a foam insulated plastic wrapped tray. The save! value for money! only at this price! stickers catch my eyes, and I know like so many yesterdays’ suppers that it’s not possible to reuse or recycle this warped wrapping. And I know that this supper’s left-over packaging is again going to find its way to Marie Louise, our nearest landfill site.
I could’ve refused the value pack, I could’ve reduced the needed want for ease, I could’ve decided not to eat chicken… I could stop defending comfort.
… when a sleepiness of soul makes us value our comfort above all else and ensures that we do not have to confront all this noise* …
… fleeting thoughts fend while I’m still staring at the frosted pieces. Do I need this moment to learn to abandon what has become comfortable?
And all this noise for chicken… for one meal.
A taste perhaps of a new piecemeal happening.
And I know a peace meal needs no fuss about what’s on the table – that there’s far more to my innermost than the food I eat. And I meet this sleepiness of soul – the one that hesitates to confront noise, the one that makes me value my comfort… and I see the poverty hiding in wealth wasted.
When we use things in a throwaway manner, we too, are somehow thrown away. We invite disregard. For convenience and speed we let go of living moments that are our precious life. We hurry towards a deadline instead of savoring a lifeline. Could we enjoy a cup and really drink from it? Could we peacefully clear our tables and our minds? Could we linger with ordinary objects and discover the prayer in them? Objects in themselves have integrity. We seem to think so when we send them in the mail – Handle with Care – our packages say. Could we learn to do so daily during the little distances that things are handled and moved from here to there? Could we move with care, touch with care, and ever so slowly become care-full? **
Thoughts continue to fleet and fend… and I gather myself together for the uncomfortable.
* Robert Sardello, Silence: The Mystery of Wholeness
** Gunilla Norris, Simple Ways