Cooking your life

I previously talked about the idea of seeing life like art.
Using this metaphor of making art, we can make our lives just like we could make a piece of art.
And another fun metaphor that we can use to look at how we approach life is like cooking.
Now, of course, in some ways cooking is like art as well.
We can design and execute these creative projects, these works of art.
Another way of looking at this cooking metaphor is that we have raw ingredients, and cooking terms these raw ingredients into finished products.
We start with something very simple and basic, and we combine it and process it and change it in a skilled way to make a result that is far better than the individual pieces and the sum of those pieces.
So we can look at this like the raw ingredients that we’re cooking with are the circumstances that are handed to us.
So this would be like a chef that can’t actually go out and shop for ingredients, you know, or it’s very limited in the choice of ingredients.
It’s like you’re a cook, you’re in the kitchen, OK, you get ingredients handed to you, and now it’s up to you to cook for yourself, maybe your family and friends.
It’s up to you to cook with the ingredients that you are given.
Or maybe you can still go to the market and buy ingredients, but there’s just not too much to choose from.
You just have this is- you have a certain set of ingredients that it is possible for you to choose to cook with, and you just have to work with that.
So imagine in some cases, it might feel like you do have access to the greatest markets of the world, and you have all the greatest products in the world at your fingertips to choose from.
But quite often, it may feel like you’re going to a bare corner store and just getting a few leftovers and, you know, very low-quality ingredients, and, you know, maybe you’re just getting half-rotten produce, and you really have to scrape the bottom of the barrel and just get like the worst, just trying to get by with enough ingredients to make some very basic soup.
These ingredients, these raw materials: that is like fate.
That is like our circumstances, what is around us, our situation that we find ourselves in.
At least in this way of looking at the metaphor, we can’t really control that.
There is a limit to how much we can really influence it.
And you can take the metaphor different ways with the market, you know, how much can you choose, how much you buy and what you buy, but it’s always going to be limited somehow.
I mean, no chef, even the most well-appointed chef, does not have an unlimited choice of raw ingredients to choose from.
We have this selection, that these are the ingredients, and that is what’s given, that is what we have now in the kitchen, so now it is up to the chef to create something good out of the ingredients we’re given.
So this metaphor is a way of looking at the difference between the circumstances around us and what we do with them.
Because you can be- it’s so common and so understandable to simply look at difficult conditions and say that “These conditions are terrible.
I can’t do anything good out of it.” But you can also see people that are in seemingly very good circumstances that are still suffering, that still find themselves eating terrible meals, you know, eating unhappiness, even though they have good ingredients.
Because imagine somebody that has no cooking skill whatsoever, is being handed the greatest ingredients in the world, and is still finding a way to, you know, burn water and so on.
So on the other hand, you could have a very skilled chef who simply has a few vegetables that are half rotten, and just like a bag of half-rotten vegetables, and imagine that being handed to a great chef.
The great chef could then skillfully cut away the rot, to cut away only the salvageable parts of these vegetables, and then to somehow prepare them into a delicious soup that could be a very satisfying meal.
So that would be like somebody that is handed a very difficult situation and is able to then take what is good in that situation, cut away the bad, take what’s good, and combine it and process it and cook it into something good.
Whereas, of course, a terrible chef with great ingredients could be just handed fortune and then will just make a mess of it, doesn’t know how to use it, doesn’t know what to do with it.
So I find this a fun metaphor to work with when if I feel like circumstances are not what I want them to be, well, it can be up to me to find a way to take what I’m given and combine it and make it into something good.
I’d be curious to hear about whether you think of things this way, and what kind of cooking are you doing?

#cookingwithlife #cookyourlife #lifeiscooking

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