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Tapas Squared

28 Jan

(or The Joy of Letting Go)

In Sanskrit, tapas means the suffering you feel as you learn to surrender to the Divine. It’s the cosmic fire that burns away the impurities that make us chase, manipulate, and grab. Tapas can be painful as all heck cuz it’s actually the purification of the ego. But as the small self offers itself to that Divine flame, over and over, it begins to let go, like a hard fist that opens.

Or a flower.

In Spanish, tapas are another deal. You know, they’re those little dishes from Spain that are so delicious :))

Last spring when I was in Mexico, someone suggested I go to the far edge of town to a tapas bar run by a renowned chef from Barcelona. She said for thirteen dollars you could get his ‘special’ and taste the whole menu.

Well, I hiked all the way out there, and when I arrived it had just opened for lunch and was still empty. I was excited to order that special.

But the waiter said brusquely, shaking his head, “No, no, senora, absolutamente not! Too much work, we can only make for two people.”

“Ok,” I answered, “No problema, I understand. It is a lot of work!” I was a little disappointed and hungry after that trek, but I didn’t really care. In the big scope of things, it didn’t matter. So I just offered it all to the Divine. And I asked the guy if they could make me ‘whatever’ for the same cost. I said I trusted him to pick.

He was gone a long, long time. I started to wonder if they’d totally forgotten me.

Then suddenly the waiter returned, beaming, and carrying a huge tray of tapas, each one a tiny, perfect gift. A few mushrooms grilled with garlic, a couple sauteed pink shrimp, a miniature Spanish omelet, a little seared tuna, a ruby-red tomato salad, a bite of roasted monkfish, some spicy potatoes with salty olives, exquisitely charred calamari, on and on.

And on.

Each dish was more delectable than the one before, a culinary aria to Abundance.

“Wow! Que paso?” I asked. “What on earth happened? I thought you said no!”

“Well,” he said. “You were so relaxed about it and didn’t complain, so we figured why the heck not?” He started laughing, “ An American who didn’t complain, Dios mio, oh how we loved that! Once we started making them, we couldn’t stop!”

I swooned my way through the first platter and then... oh my god, he arrived with another! I was so full I couldn’t take another bite so I brought the second batch home for a Mexican friend.

Which just goes to show, sometimes (even often) when you TOTALLY let go, stop bitching, moaning, and pushing, give it ALL to the Divine.. and have NO idea what the freakin hell might happen next, you get more--much, much more--than you EVER could imagine.

Even with tapas :))

-Tosha Silver

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