Food is Sacred
Image Credit: Tyrell Descheny
After finishing his meal, I would often see my great grandpa sit at the table by himself. While sitting there, I heard him talking, not to himself but rather to the food. His words were prayers being said not only for himself, for a legacy of what he had established; his kids, grandkids and livestock. Even down to thanking the plates, bowls, cups and utensils. They all have a part in enjoying the meal.
Navajo's once wiped the grease and food crumbs off of themselves, rubbing their hands together and then began massaging themselves, around their joints in hopes that it keeps them from aching. It was their way of curing and preventing aches.
Food is considered sacred. When someone is sick, food is offered to nourish the body. When someone is grieving, food is offered in hopes of healing the soul and preventing sickness.
Being thankful for the meal that was prepared, it's always polite to thank the one who prepared the meal. When people visit, it's polite to cook a small meal for them and their traveling, as a way of saying "thank you for visiting" in hopes they return and tell others of their generous hospitality.
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The perception of mental illness won’t change unless we act to change it.
During Mental Health Month, We Are Navajo joins NAMI and the mental health community to reaffirm our commitment to building our understanding of mental illness, increasing access to treatment and ensuring those who are struggling to know they are not alone. Learn More