What is the eatgood movement?
Everything about who you are is because of what you ate. And what your mother ate, and what your grandmother ate, and what your great-grandmother ate, and so on. Those women seemed to have found a rhythmic current traced in the outlines of their souls that led them to the foods that told them who they were. Those foods held a long lineage and supported those women to survive and thrive, and now that history is chronicled in your body. As a result of every decision they made, it tells a story of profound connection and creation of who they were. Those connections moved with them as they crossed oceans and moved them as they built their homes. Those connections acted as geographical blueprints imprinted into their DNA as codes of universal dialogues and the soundscape of brushing limbs as they move three quarters left, half-a-step back, a full turn, and hold. Those connections became artifacts embedded into their movements and gestures that held stories and memories of how cookery is more than just the preparation of food, but is the conjuring of spells. Cookery is an incantation that sets healing energy into motion and it is here that eatgood begins.
For me, eatgood is personal. It’s a single decision, made every single day which eventually becomes an agreement with progress.
Cookery requires a commitment to the conjure as you are creating, designing and disrupting all at the sametime. Those spells become the words we say and repeat which can bring the whole universe to its knees as you feed the secrets of the living and nonliving through each meal. It nourishes the body by feeding the mind as those words, eatgood, tether to an intimate memory that intertwines the complex conjectures of what it means to cast spells in favour of healing and freedom. And it is during this time that we search for anchors to remind us of what we are capable of.
I believe eatgood to be two simple words joined together to signify a union. A partnership that is based on a foundation of reciprocity. The words, ‘eat and good’ are often associated with a time, place and thing, and they can also encapsulate ideologies linked to privilege and access and used to exclude and disassociate from the human experience. Although these words may be used to speak about the individual, I believe that when they are placed together, lowercased, they can transform from just words to an expression. eatgood becomes timeless, placeless and formless, a shapeshifting spell designed to ignite the memories of the past by calling it forth as a mantra, a prayer or words of affirmation that root you in an energy of transformation. eatgood has become my deepest expression of self-love, as I am reminded every time I repeat it of the line of women before me who committed themselves to the conjure as they prepared each meal.
For me, eatgood is personal. It’s a single decision, made every single day which eventually becomes an agreement with progress. To not only cast the spell with words but to embody it as an energy of transformation. That that individual decision creates an incandescent jolt which will continue to be revealed through the generations to come as eatgood shapeshifts to become what exactly is needed. So allow yourself to say it eatgood
Where do you feel it? What do you see?
As you move through your day, allow those words to sink, like a spell cast, and allow the magic to happen.
Aisha Lesley Bentham MA, BFA, internationally trained artist-scholar and vegan chef from Toronto, studied Devising Theatre and Performance at Arthaus.berlin, founded RootReach; a multi-disciplinary residency for artists, and has a vegan food and lifestyle brand called choosing.hue. Her research and passion looks at the intersections of cooking and performance and looks to integrate notions of care, eco-somatics and cookery. She is currently a Black Arts fellow at Wildseed centre for the Arts and Activism, writing her first book and is a sessional-professor in the Performing Arts department.