A few months ago, I was listening to the radio and heard an interview with Madhar Jaffrey. I wasn’t really paying close attention, but followed that she was a famous Indian Actress who became a famous Indian chef.
She talked about her career as a famous actress, but talked mostly about her cooking, which started as a hobby and has led to a couple of books and worldwide renown as a chef! Toward the end of the interview, she said this about her cooking:
“I have had trouble taking it seriously, but I consider both of them to be my professions now. But one was the one I sought and studied for, and the other dropped from heaven.”
I found that statement fascinating. What are the gifts that you studied and sought and what are those that dropped from heaven?
How do we perceive those kinds of innate gifts that are in all of us…intuition, an eye for design, love, a sense of responsibility, compassion, fashion sense? Do we take them as “seriously” as the degree we racked up student loans for or the career we spent a small fortune developing?
This is the picture of one man’s gift and it left a big impression on me. He was in one day at Starfire, teaching a class on sculpting with metal. As he left, we struck up a conversation about it, and he told me that he started working with metal as a way to overcome his addiction, and he has been clean for ten years now.
He said that working with the metal – bending it, shaping it, handling it, feeling its weight – grounds him and gives him something to focus on when he feels the pull of his addiction. He didn’t really take any art classes (or spend a bunch of money getting his BFA). He just started collecting scraps and molding it. And now, he is teaching that gift and talent to others and creating elaborate and beautiful pieces of art.
The piece he gave me is a simple and terrific reminder of the gifts that “drop from heaven” and are inside each one of us…And they rarely cost anything! How about that?