A funny question came to mind recently.
But first, a little background information.
In 1973, in an effort to standardize the food industry, the United States began requiring that packaged foods provide nutritional labels spelling out the number of calories, grams of protein, carbohydrate and fat and the percent of the US Recommended Daily Allowance of specific ingredients.
Then in 1990, the USDA mandated that all food companies were required to make consistent claims and include a detailed, standardized nutrition facts panel on all products intended to be sold.
This resulted in the nutritional labels you now find on almost every food item sold and additional changes are planned for the future.
My question is, what do you think it would be like if every human had a label attached to them listing their ingredients, like the food products we eat?
I’m not talking about the percentages of the most common chemicals found in humans; like oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, carbon, calcium, and phosphorus.
What I mean is, what if we came with a label identifying the contents of our hearts and minds? A label that provided insight into our feelings, thoughts, and beliefs.
In one way it might make it easier to understand each other.
And perhaps there would be warnings on our labels, letting others know which topics were most likely to trigger negative reactions before conversations began.
The idea also made me wonder, if we could see our own label clearly, would we still want each ingredient to be inside us? Or perhaps we’d recognize that one or more of them do not make us happy, fulfilled, or joyful. That some of our contents create misery and suffering.
If we knew in advance that some of our ingredients were harmful to us, we might make better decisions.
Well, what if we started over? Is that possible?
If you answered ‘yes’, what would you consciously choose to place inside yourself, if you could begin again?
I found the question intriguing and needed to sit back for a moment before answering.
I tried to clear my mind, which is quite a task some days. I think there are lots of ingredients that would be good to start with, but I ended up choosing ‘love’. Love for me and love for those around me. Is there any way that could ever go wrong?
But an important part of me asked what that actually means. How does love work? After all, there are so many difficult and challenging situations we all face. Is love really the answer to them all?
I sat back again, awaiting my own answer.
I came to an immediate conclusion…yes, love is the answer to everything. It is the main ingredient. With it firmly in my heart I see everything else fitting together. Love allows me freedom. It makes it possible to see through fear, sadness, anger, and all of the other warnings I might encounter.
And if I want to add other ingredients, love works with them all in unison, courage, compassion, bravery, generosity, empathy, faith, trust and so many more.
If you decide to start over, I hope you choose ingredients that serve you well.
4 Replies to “Choosing Your Ingredients”
Choosing your ingredients, such an interesting question.
I applaud , again Rob, your curious and open mind that floats this query by us.
I believe we do have labels,, labels we have placed on others including ourselves and labels others have placed on us., commonly known as judgements.
Examples like, he’s competitive, she’s a neat freak, your always late. ( uh oh..)
We “earn” these labels and proudly or not so proudly stick with them. It’s who I am. And as a kid , we used to utter the phrase , “ lump it or leave it.”
But I am happy to say our spiritual practice gives us another chance, a lot of other chances to do and see and do things differently.
I have a choice. After my knee jerk reaction of calling you out or bringing you down, or myself as well , I have a choice to see you as my fellow brother or sister.
A fellow human being either calling out for help or for love or our need for love as Marianne Williamson reminds us.
A human being who always has the capacity to change. It may not be easy but it’s simple , the mystics tell us. ( I think)
Yes, the number one ingredient in humans is love. The fillers and preservatives are known commonly as fear. But love is the natural pure healthy ingredient.
Grateful for your message, Rob.
So glad to have you with me on this incredible journey that we want to be filled with love.
I’m not a fan of any label, having seen what a destructive force they are, as I see that you agree, unless of course,
the label is ‘loving’, then I’m all for it.
I envision a world where each child is a seeker/giver of love.
No child should ever become a hypervigilant avoider of shame.
I agree completely. Shame has no rightful place in the world. I hope all shame one day becomes covered with love and is transformed.