It reminded me of when I am cooking, and that feeling of effortless effort, when I'm probably applying knowledge and energy and intention, but still, it doesn't feel like I'm trying. I'm just doing, just cooking. It's that feeling of knowing the next thing that needs to be happen (more salt, higher heat, a splash of vinegar) in the half second just before it needs to happen. It's not written anywhere, it just arrives and my body is moving before the thought completes forming. Sometimes even before.
This ability comes to me, like perhaps it does for the potter, after years and years of cooking. In my case, almost 30 years, maybe even more. Sure, I've read uncountable cookbooks and cooking articles, tasted dozens of inspiring meals. I've attended classes, taught classes even. I've watched cooking shows and videos, and have had long discussions with fellow cooking geeks about ingredients, techniques, innovation. All this has bought me invaluable knowledge and understanding. But nothing, nothing has taught me about cooking better than actually cooking. Nothing can replace the physicality of actually cooking, of doing cooking, of being cooking.
We can read a cake recipe and talk about making a cake and watch a video of someone making a cake, but none of those actions will actually produce a cake. It's only when we take down a bowl and pick up a spoon and start measuring flour that the cake begins to exist. Just as life teaches us how to live at that moment when we are actually, completely, totally engaged in living. In the end, it's all in the doing.
So please, just go ahead and do it. Over and over and over again.
Related: Weekend Meditation: Brand New
(Image: Dana Velden)