Food is equal to God as told by our ancient scholars. This when translated to Sanskrit is “Annam Parabrahmaswaroopam.” But we, their descendents, give scant respect to this age-old saying and sayers. As a result, millions of our fellow beings die of hunger every day when millions of tons of food is thrown away or wasted or discarded for no good reason at all. Sometimes there are a few complications because of which food is wasted. Except for them, this is a very simple problem with colossal possibilities of simple solutions. In brief it is “Don’t waste food; Give it to others.”
Wasting food is not a good practice at all both for the economy and also to the environment or to our own ethical justification. So if things are going wrong, we have to put them on the right track and initially do a little bit of fault-finding.
The basic reason behind all this is degradation of ethics in men irrespective of caste, colour, creed, race, region and religion. When scientific inventions are helping in creating plenty, commercial conventions are creating scarcity. Production units have in a way become partly destruction units. Though civilisation is moving forward, but our values are actually taking us backward. Frankly speaking, there are a lot of justifiable and unjustifiable reasons behind the above citations. No one can and should be blamed wholly for disrespecting this living God.
Let us examine this problem from a layman’s point of view because that is the easiest thing to do. Food was considered God by our ancestors and it used to be given to others piously. But now, due to the plenty of food available, thanks to our industrial civilisation, food is being wasted as a sign of our wealth, never mind it being wasted in this frenzy display of prosperity.
Don’t do this, serve according to an individual’s capability but not his stomach’s elasticity. Whenever we arrange any gathering, occasion, get-together or function, just give a call to any charitable organisation and make arrangements to donate the surplus food maintaining the utmost level of decency or depute someone to donate food to the beggars waiting outside your premises. Start such a thing and it will soon catch up. I know some people already do it. Needless to say, every time we eat, whether it is at home or at a function, get-together or anytime.
Let’s only help ourselves only to our stomach’s fill nothing less and nothing more. Don’t allow the other person to serve or force you eat against your will or fill and it’s your job to do so. Firmly stand on your will and tell him why its futile to make you eat more than you can or want to. If you try or are able to convince the other person successfully, then you are a member of the unorganised movement against wastage of food. Just imagine as to how much of productivity is lost forever when most of us discard food on our plates and imagine all the time, energy and money put on that right from the farm place by the farmer, worker in a mill, godown and then carried away to the commercial outlets, sold by the givers and to the kitchen where the chef prepares and finally puts on to your platter. It’s no simple issue that such a big process comes to an end before you and you thwart it just in a second unmindful of all the countable, uncountable factors and transactions behind the food in front of your plate.
The root cause of this is lack of clarity of purpose of life and degradation of moral values. Also, we are in a race from birth to death, we don’t have awareness of our actions -good, bad, profit or loss (mostly from long term point of view) manners or bad habits etc.
We just keep running to schools, offices and lastly to super speciality hospitals but we do not have a moment to brood about all the valuable trivialities of life whether it be good or bad. WHY ALL THIS? Because we lost respect of food and no longer treat it as precious, holy or divine as God is.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)