Meal prayer

A place to discuss health and fitness, healthy diets. A fit body makes for a fit mind.

Meal prayer

Postby Bonsai Doug » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:41 pm

I've been on the look-out for an equivalent pre-meal prayer like that of "grace" offered by many Christians.

I recently came across this and thought I'd share:

Wisely reflecting I eat this food,
remembering with gratitude where it comes from
and how many people have no food or too little.

Guarding my mind against indulgence,
mindful of each mouthful,
I take into this body what it needs
to support me on the path.

~ Ajahn Jayasaro
Now having obtained a precious human body,
I do not have the luxury of remaining on a distracted path.

~ Tibetan Book of the Dead
User avatar
Bonsai Doug
Posts: 71
Joined: Sat Oct 23, 2010 4:59 pm
Location: Finger Lakes area of NY

Re: Meal prayer

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:40 pm

Nice! Thank you for that. Mettaya. :heart:
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

Uposatha Observance Club:
Kiva-Theravada Buddhists:
Dana on the Interwebs:
User avatar
Khalil Bodhi
Posts: 1647
Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2009 6:32 pm
Location: NYC

Re: Meal prayer

Postby bodom » Wed Oct 10, 2012 5:50 pm

See this sutta:

Once when the Buddha was living at Savatthi, King Pasenadi of Kosala ate a whole bucketful of food, and then approached the Buddha, engorged and panting, and sat down to one side. The Buddha, discerning that King Pasenadi was engorged and panting, took the occasion to utter this verse:

When a person is constantly mindful,
And knows when enough food has been taken,
All their afflictions become more slender
— They age more gradually, protecting their lives.

Now at that time the brahman youth Sudassana was standing nearby, and King Pasenadi of Kosala addressed him: "Come now, my dear Sudassana, and having thoroughly mastered this verse in the presence of the Buddha, recite it whenever food is brought to me. And I will set up for you a permanent offering of a hundred kahaapanas every day." "So be it, your majesty," the brahman youth Sudassana replied to the king... ... .olen.html

The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
User avatar
Posts: 4661
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2009 6:18 pm
Location: San Antonio, Texas

Re: Meal prayer

Postby Cittasanto » Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:48 pm

This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
User avatar
Posts: 5876
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:31 pm
Location: Ellan Vannin

Re: Meal prayer

Postby T_Hill_616 » Fri Oct 19, 2012 3:04 pm

From The Four Foundations of Mindfulness In Plain English[u] by Bhante Gunaratana;
" with mindful reflection, I eat this food, neither for amusement, nor for intoxication, nor for the sake I physical beauty and attractiveness, but only for the endurance and continuance of this body, for ending discomfort, and for assisting the holy life, considering, "Thus I shall terminate old feelings without arousing new feelings. I shall be healthy and blameless and shall live in comfort." :anjali:
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:17 pm

Re: Meal prayer

Postby mikenz66 » Fri Oct 19, 2012 8:36 pm

Thanks for the quotation T Hill.

That's also part of the morning chant that monks do every day. At my Wat they also do it before meals. ... ml#morning
Reflection at the Moment of Using the Requisites
Paṭisaṅkhā yoniso piṇḍapātaṃ paṭisevāmi,
Considering it thoughtfully, I use alms food,
Neva davāya na madāya na maṇḍanāya na vibhūsanāya,
Not playfully, nor for intoxication, nor for putting on bulk, nor for beautification,
Yāvadeva imassa kāyassa ṭhitiyā yāpanāya vihiṃsuparatiyā brahma-cariyānuggahāya,
But simply for the survival & continuance of this body, for ending its afflictions, for the support of the holy life,
Iti purāṇañca vedanaṃ paṭihaṅkhāmi navañca vedanaṃ na uppādessāmi,
(Thinking,) Thus will I destroy old feelings (of hunger) and not create new feelings (from overeating).
Yātrā ca me bhavissati anavajjatā ca phāsu-vihāro cāti.
I will maintain myself, be blameless, & live in comfort.

And here it is in a sutta: ... .than.html
"Reflecting appropriately, he uses almsfood, not playfully, nor for intoxication, nor for putting on bulk, nor for beautification; but simply for the survival & continuance of this body, for ending its afflictions, for the support of the holy life, thinking, 'Thus will I destroy old feelings [of hunger] and not create new feelings [from overeating]. I will maintain myself, be blameless, & live in comfort.'

User avatar
Posts: 10777
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Re: Meal prayer

Postby T_Hill_616 » Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:10 pm

Thank you Mike for explaining what "feelings" the reflection refers to. I wasn't quite sure about that. :anjali:
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:17 pm

Return to Wellness, Diet & Fitness

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests