It is said that shamans are brought back from journeying by the scent of cooking. Olfactory senses are the pathway between dimensions and even lifetimes. Just as shamans are brought forth into the body of their current incarnation so also are we transcended and ancestors or other passed loved ones invoked by way of smell.
Chopping ginger in her kitchen the scent of barley and rice wafted through conjuring a sensation that felt as if a tectonic plate of her brain shifted suddenly. Light shone into long-forgotten crevices, beaming on a discovery that is only conceptualized by some.
She was suddenly and very viscerally having the experience of being a monk meditating in a cave in Tibet as she stood at her kitchen island: a parallel life perhaps she thought as her rhythmic chopping became simultaneously the beads of a mala pushed between her thumb and index finger. Her clanking furnace became the sound of bells around the necks of a herd of yaks passing near the cave. A prayer resounded as if she where silently uttering the words from within, “May I return to this plane of existence until all sentient beings awaken.” An earnest wish from the deepest marrow of the monk caused a tear as she diced an onion, pushing forth bead after bead of the well-worn mala.
She then had the stark realization that it was from this prayer of the monk in the cave that her entire current existence arose: out of a single tear.
She began to wonder whether she is the monk in the cave in Tibet or the woman in the kitchen chopping.