Sunday, March 27, 2011

Taking Time to Make Life Beautiful

I am an advocate for beauty, which should be part of everything in life. Whatever we do or build or make should be done with beauty in mind. After all, beauty is a spiritual quality. It enriches life, heals the soul, lifts the spirit. We are hardwired to appreciate it. What person, from whatever culture they hail, is not transported at the sight of a soaring cathedral, the expanse of the Grand Canyon, the blue-green waters of the Caribbean, a stunning piece of jewelry, a flowing silk sari, the gleaming majesty of the Taj Mahal? Most of us never have to go that far to experience beauty. It is all around us. But do we really look at what is familiar? Do we take the time to make the everyday, simple things we do an act of reverence? Do we hurry through our tasks or make them delicious and lovely?

Today a friend described a most sumptuous, deliciously thick cup of French hot chocolate she'd had at a small restaurant in New Hampshire. We were drooling and licking our lips just listening to her description. What she described was not only the taste. It was the presentation, in elegant little demitasse cups and silver spoons. It was presented to her on a little tray like a sacrament. We mused about other wonderful, elegant meals we have enjoyed and the creative ways they were presented.

That's it, I thought. I need to take the time for slow food, time to make my food beautiful as well as tasty. I want to learn how to carve flowers out of fruit and vegetables and find ways to inject sumptuousness into the simplest meal. It will cost me nothing but a little time.

Life can be, after all, so delicious if we make it so.

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