Recollections on Sri Chinmoy: Prasad and health
- I remember that Sri Chinmoy often encourages his students to keep healthy and trim. Once, after a sublime Wednesday night meditation, he inquired of one of his disciples, "I am not insisting, I am not interrogating, I am just asking if you are planning to lose some weight."
He answered, with a little smile in his voice, "I'll be starting a new program soon, Guru."
Then he said,"We're in the same boat. I lose weight and then I gain it back."
I think Sri Chinmoy once remarked that realizing God is easier than losing weight!
Anyway, I often found it ironic that Sri Chinmoy would advise us to watch our weight, to stay thin and healthy, often while handing out monster-sized prasad bags of chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter m and m's, Indian Rajbhog butter cookies, eggplant knishes, samosas, ladhus, slices of mushroom pizza and chocolate pudding. And I am not exaggerating! Really! All in one bag!
Devotion of course demanded (and still demands) that I eat everything at one sitting. However, I've come to learn to divide the prasad meal into sweet and savory items and to eat them at different times so I don't get a stomach ache. Usually I eat the savory stuff before going to sleep and the decadent sweets the next morning.
I think he liked watching us eating the prasad. He wasn't that big of an advocate of so-called health foods, often remarking that food has to give joy in order to impart good health. I think he said that bread, rice and potatoes are the best foods to eat to get strength. I don't think `salad' was too high on his list of favorite foods!
Of course, I am not trying to dispense dietary advice here. By all means, follow whatever eating regimen works for you. I'm going over to the local chocolaterie for my daily health infusion. If I pass out from sugar shock, only cinnamon-vanilla crepes will be able to revive me.
See you at the fitness club!