Meditating with wine

You’ve got to watch out for the devil! I think that opening sentence calls for a sip of wine. Here’s a suggestion for you… Find a bottle of Louis M Martini Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, and notice the heft of the bottle. Look at the black glass, pop out the cork, smell the wine’s amazing rich aroma, taste the wine’s subtle velvety cherry lusciousness, and be amazed how fast the flavors disappear after you swallow the beverage. Be aware of what you just felt, smelled, saw, tasted, and be grateful. That, my friends, is meditating with wine! A few years ago I was conducting an adult education class on the topic of meditation. I was breaking some normal religious barriers by doing that, because to many in attendance, such a practice was not Christian. I introduced the class subject, and then we began on the path to discover what is this thing called meditation. After a few minutes of a deep breathing exercise, I asked the attendees to relax and empty their minds of as much stuff floating through their brains as possible. That’s when the devil entered the discussion. One of the class members very pointedly said she wouldn’t empty her mind because the devil would enter it. I can’t tell you how difficult it was to stop myself from saying that, apparently it’s already too late to worry about that happening. But I urged the class onward and we continued to practice the art of mediation. Meditation is about transformation. It’s about awareness. For us Northerners, the birds of summer have returned to us once again. It’s so pleasing to hear the varied bird songs, and to watch their nest building activities. Do these birds transform us in any way? Darn right they do! Through our awareness of them, they give us some peace and hope for the coming months. Beauty always does that to us. Birds are nature’s gift to us, and we need to be grateful for them. While on the subject of birds, why not try a bottle of Mendocino County “Rhys” Pinot Blanc? It’s a very pleasing dry white wine that will ask you to be aware of it so you can fully enjoy it. Imagine this: you are sitting in the park with a glass of this cold crisp wine and they birds are singing for you. Wow! Meditating helps one be aware of how full your mind is of the overwhelming stuff of life. It asks you to focus on one part of your being for just a few minutes. When is the last time you really felt a deep breath of air entering your lungs? Have you ever just looked at your hands, and be thankful for what they accomplish for you? Take a deep breath and study your eyes. What/who do you see? Don’t forget that glass of wine. While meditating on the beauty of family, try a glass of McManis Merlot. I think you’ll like the complex mixing of mild spices, vanilla and blackberries. Be aware of the toasty finish — pause for a second and be grateful. Therefore, be mindful of the goodness in life. It’s there for you. As you pause for that moment, don’t worry about the devil. No, El Diablo is not going to invade you. No, nasty thoughts aren’t going to flood you brain! If you’re anything like me, it’s probably too late already. As always, eat and drink in moderation but laugh with reckless abandon! Cheers!


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