Ram Dass, The Only Dance There Is, Part 3
What I mean by the word consecration is bringing into consciousness the nature of the act in a cosmic plan. For example, in the old days people would say grace. Grace was a thing you waited for before you ate the turkey.
Norman Rockwell characterizes the kid reaching while everybody’s head’s bowed. It’s that time, “Let’s say grace.” “Grace.” Now, when I bless food, the statement I say, when I say grace, is an old Sanskrit one. It means “This offering of this little ritual I’m performing, this is part of it all, part of Brahma, part of that which is eternally all. He who is making the offering means, that which is being offered is part of it all. The hunger to which you are feeding . . . the fire which you are feeding, that’s all part of it all. Whoever you are offering it to is part of it all, too. He who realizes that all of it is interrelated, all of it is one, becomes one with it all.”
There is a very lovely short story by J. D. Salinger calledTeddy, in which Teddy is like an old lama who has taken a reincarnation in a kind of middle class western family by some quirk of cosmic design. He is about ten years old and on a ship with his sister and his mother and father.
He’s out on deck and he is meeting this man who has begun to see that this little boy isn’t quite like a little boy, and he says to him, “When did you first realize that you … how it was?” And Teddy says, “Well, I was 6 years old. I was in the kitchen and I was watching my little sister in her high-chair drink milk. I suddenly saw, that it was sort of like God pouring God into God, if you know what I mean.” Well, that’s exactly the same thing as that Sanskrit mantra.