Thursday, February 26, 2009

Food is for thinking

Sometimes I stumble across interesting things when I do research. Here's a quotation from Marguerite Yourcenar's historical novel, Memoirs of Hadrian:

Do not do me the injustice to take me for a mere ascetic; an operation which is performed two or three times a day, and the purpose of which is to sustain life, surely merits all our care. To eat a fruit is to welcome into oneself a fair living object; which is alien to us but is nourished and protected like is by the earth; it is to consume a sacrifice wherein we sustain ourselves at the expense of things. I have never bitten into a chunk of army bread without marveling that this coarse and heavy concoction can transform itself into blood and warmth, and perhaps into courage. Alas, why does my mind, even in its best days, never possess but a particle of the assimilative powers of the body?