We are very fortunate to have food to eat and we are even more fortunate to have the opportunity to eat with a community of fellow practitioners. Eating in mindfulness can benefit our spiritual life and physical health. We allow our body and mind to be at ease while we eat. We do not rush to finish, but we enjoy every morsel with awareness. We become aware of the rain, the sunand the green earth as we chew slowly. We are aware ofwhat we are chewing and do not let our mind beoccupied by meaningless thinking. We chew every mouthful at least thirty times so the saliva has a chance to aid the digestive process. Our full awareness during the meal is a way of showing gratitude for the nourishment and for the countless supporting conditions that have come to sustain us. We can look at each other from time to time with compassion and smile. We take time to enjoy our meal as a community, as a family. We wait for the whole community to be served before the bell is invited three times to start eating. The first 20 minutes we eat in silence. After a double sound of the bell we may converse or serve more food.