The Dharma In A Bowl Of Curry Rice

cooked rice and curry food served on white plate
Photo by Cats Coming on Pexels.com

This experiencer is changing.
This experiencing is changing.
This experienced is changing.

Stonepeace | Books

One day, answering the call of a food craving, I decided to drive to a vegetarian stall to have white rice flavoured with curry for lunch. As it had been about a month since I ate curry, which a doctor advised against for health reasons, I thought it should be alright. When the dish arrived at my table, I eagerly put scoops of curry over the rice, until nearly every single grain of rice was fragrantly covered.

Halfway through the meal, I thought to myself… ‘Due to liking of this curry, I was (literally) driven to come for it. If it is tasteless, would I have thought of it?’ Shortly after this question arose, as I placed another scoop of rice into my mouth, I experienced the taste of the curry in that very moment arising and falling, within less than a second. The experience of the taster tasting the tasted came as swiftly as it went. With sharpened mindfulness, we will see that this is actually what happens from moment to moment!

The moment was clear, purely without discrimination of like or dislike. I further reflected… ‘As with all changing experiences, which are without permanence or substantiality, the taste could not even stay for a while longer than it is conditioned to stay. I have been fooling myself with my experiences of phenomena in this world, mistaking them to be absolutely real, when they are equally fleeting and without real self.

Fuelled by unmindful perception and craving, I have been returning for more and more “flavours of curry“, thinking they can be truly fulfilling and lasting. May I instead strive towards the liberation of the noble ones untainted by attachment, aversion and delusion!’ Not that we should not enjoy sense pleasures, but we should realise their true nature, so as to not be bound by them, and to eventually transcend them for the true bliss of enlightenment!

If all in this worldly life rises and falls,
what are you rising and falling for?
Just for doing so, or for training towards liberation
from otherwise endless rising and falling?

Stonepeace | Books

– Lui Jian Hong & Shen Shi’an


  • I think it’s alright to have cravings, as long as you are aware that these are merely cravings and that they will come and go. Right now, I’m a little envious and think that you should be thankful for cravings too. I’m going through a no-appetite phase which is slightly alarming because I don’t feel like eating at all even when I’m hungry. I try to entice myself to eat by thinking of delicious food or evoke cravings but nothing comes to mind. At the end of the day I am forced to eat because I should. So I choose something I think I am able to stomach. What I wouldn’t give right now to have a hearty appetite and a craving that can be satisfied!

  • Having a healthy appetite is different from having unhealthy craving. Appetite keeps us alive, while craving keeps us in rebirth.

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