How is the end of your summer? Is your life delicious these days? This is my favorite time of year, with the cooler nights and a lot of delicious summertime abundance in it's fullest explosion. We get to taste life's fullness all round us.
The word RASA comes from the Sansrit language and is often translated into definitions such as “divine nectar”, “taste”, “essence”, or even “juice”. RASA includes many different flavors that we experience sparking the distinction between a sweet summer peach, a bulb of garlic and a cooling sour lemon.
Given your uniqueness and individuality you can determine the balance of RASA for your character while also balancing the flavors on your plate and your personal experience of life. Customized RASA for feeling and flavor.
The Traditions Chinese Medicine regards each of the 5 flavors (bitter, salty, sweet, pungent and sour) as a dynamic representation, not only a specific geography of your tongue and palate but also a larger geography of your life in its constitution and balance. Awakening to the taste of food and the taste of life can guide you to more mindfulness with meals and wakefulness with your own hunger for life.
With each of the 5 flavors take some time to investigate which flavors you are drawn to, such as the ones you overeat, as well as the flavors you shy away from. Practice balancing your plate with something from each flavor to come up with the perfect balance for you. Within this balance, it is often noticed that we also balance out our own hunger cues, empower ourselves with our usual cravings and enhance our inner experience with our meals.
Grains, milks, fruits, and nuts provide a whole body sweetness. Sweetness is the most nourishing flavor, all the way from breast milk to a homemade desert. Sweetness nourishes the body to the highest degree and sings to the heart’s strength and longevity. This flavor is the most over eaten and out of balance in our culture. Often people get all the way through lunchtime without any other flavor other than sweet on their plate. Sound familiar?
Salt, seaweed and cheeses deliver salt to the body. Salt maintains electrolytes in the body while the salty flavor increases courage and fearlessness.
Foods such as hot peppers, garlic and ginger diffuse pungent. Pungent clears the sinuses and improves circulation. Pungent foods are known to increase passion and excitement ~ Oh Ya!!
Bitter is experienced in foods like kale, spinach and chocolate. Bitter foods purify and cleanse the body, especially the liver. Bitter is the most lacking in the Western World's diet, even though bitter foods often offer the most health benefits and spiritual enhancement.
Citrus, green grapes, vinegars and pickles offer the sour flavor. Sour is energizing and aids in digestion. The sour flavor is known to increase spiritual fire and passion for life. Most of us would fancy a little more of that!
As you fine-tune your RASA you will wake up to a more sensual, descriptive and exciting experience with your relationship to food. You have the opportunity to bring more attention and awareness to eating that will refines the senses and wake you up to the moment. The taste of life and the true experience of food connect body with soul, and heart with mind. Practice the art of a little more RASA and begin to taste your life to the fullest.
Enjoy the late summer days and nights, and bask in your own gratitude for life and all it's flavors.