Went to the farmers market on Saturday. I usually stand around drinking coffee and eating a cinnamon roll while my wife does the shopping. But she was out of town this time so it was left to me.
I love this market. The place is peaceful. The food is beautiful; it’s organic and grown locally. There is something essential and in abundance in this food that is not present at all in the food found at the supermarket.
A guru instructed his followers like this: Feed Everyone.
My wife has written a list for me of the items I am to get at the market:
About twenty carrots
Two kinds of lettuce
Swiss chard – one bundle
I’m a little early and not everyone is set up yet. I go looking for twenty carrots and I come to a small stand where a young woman arranges her produce. I see that she has some pretty carrots. She asks whether I’d like orange carrots or yellow carrots or purple carrots. I understand the orange ones so that’s what I ask for. I tell her I need about twenty. She counts the carrots in one bunch and says three bunches ought to do it. I hand her some money and she hands some money back to me. I pay no attention to how much the carrots cost or how much change I get back. I do not care. Whatever it is I know it’s right. She helps me put the carrots into my bag and there is black soil beneath her nails. That’s just the way I want my food handed to me. I’m sure that she has grown these carrots – with her partner or with her family, but she has grown them herself. She’s pulled them from the ground; loaded them onto her truck; driven them to the market; carried them from her truck to her stand; arranged them at her stand so that we can see their beauty; selected just the ones for me and handed them to me, smiling, clearly enjoying the transaction as much as I. Does she know that what she does is sacred?
Of course she does.
I take my carrots and go in search of the rest of my list. As I walk by the end of one of the rows, a beautiful child peeks out from beneath a table. She allows eye contact for a moment and then she scoots back under her table – a wild thing.
I see another farmer we know and I ask how Angie’s doing. The baby’s due today, he says. Angie’s anxious, but she’s fine.
I talk with my friend Sarah a while. She makes and sells delicious cheese.
A trio is playing – fiddle, mandolin, guitar. The guitarist smiles at me in greeting – she’s attended my yoga class a few times.
I show some initiative and buy some mushrooms that aren’t on my list.
I think of the woman who grew my carrots and how she passes energy from her hand to mine.
She doesn’t say this as she says this… This is my offering.
I hand her the earnings from my work and say but don’t say… This is mine to you.
I think I’m having an insight…
As soon as I think that, a beautiful little girl smiles at me from beneath a table and says, Are you sure about that, big boy? For a moment I see the game, and then she’s gone back to hiding.
Lila – the divine at play.
It’s all play, and everything is in play.
Everything is in play.
Hatred is available to me. I can play with that. I’m not even saying I shouldn’t – it’s in play. But I do notice that carrying around ill will in my mind is draining. Likewise the other things the old yogis warn us about – greed, dishonesty, lust – all of it.
Those are all concepts of untruth.
They come out of ignorance.
If I hate someone, it isn’t because I know the truth about them; it’s because I’m ignorant of the truth about myself.
I can play with any of it, but only some of it will feed me.
I want my food from the hand that grows it.
Thanks and blessings to two of my dharma sisters, Chitradevi and Shraddha, for their love and inspiration.