Religion and Food

“Business underlies everything in our national life, including our spiritual life. Witness the fact that in the Lord’s Prayer the first petition is for daily bread. No one can worship God or love his neighbor on an empty stomach.”

Woodrow Wilson on Poverty in America – (Speech, 1912)

When I first read this food quote, I agreed full heartily since Maslow’s hierarchy of needs came to mind. I tend to agree with his pyramid stating shat one can not begin to worry about religious needs until his or her physiological needs are satisfied. But, then I stopped and remembered my experience with impoverish people both here in the States and abroad, many poor people seem to be very religious; it obviously assists the hunger. Also, many cultures practice fasting as a form of devotion in their religion. Could have that come from scarcity or abundance of food?

I see that food has tight connections with religion, but why would I make this my food studies focus? Anyone out there studying the topic of food in religious studies? What other things should we focus on when we talk about food and religion?

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Food is an important part of religious observance and spiritual ritual for many faiths including
    Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism. The role of food in cultural practices and
    religious beliefs is complex and varies among individuals and communities. Any introduction to
    such a diverse and complex topic will not be able to include everything. Instead, here is a sample
    of some ways in which various religious groups include food as a vital part of their faith. for more information feel free to browse http://holy-food.org

  2. Dan Argonauta says:

    It’s interesting study the importance of food on the Camdomblé in Brasil. They offer especifics foods for each Orixá, like Yemanjá, Oxum, Iansã, Nanã, Omulu. Since the blacks came from africa and they introduced their faith in Brazilian ground that their Gods became part of this lands. For the Orixá’s son (Filho de Orixá) there are some restrictions of food they can’t eat. It’s what they call “quizila”, something you can`t do because if you do it, during the transe your body will not fell good to recieve the Orixá.

    1. Asiago says:

      Do you have a site were we can learn a little more about this “quizila”, because it sounds really interesting!

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