Friday, February 6, 2009

Chicken Soup

"The meat taken should be that of hens or roosters
their broth should also be taken
because this sort of fowl has virtue
in rectifying corrupted humours."
Rabbi Moshe ben Maimonides

Fr. Georges was with Anne when she drew her last breath (See "We Are Spirits" post below) That night at church, Georges was visibly worn out. Even when you believe that death is not an end but a beginning, letting go is no easy task. "I felt it in my heart," he told me as we sat together in the quiet church. Because he cared so much, I think he felt a physical pain as well as an emotional one.

A few days later Georges was sick. Sore throat, coughing, sneezing, aching, fever sick. He needed a nurse, or at the very least a good dose of chicken soup. Merry ME to the rescue!

I talked to Georges yesterday and he was feeling better. He said he was sure it was the soup. I wonder what it is about chicken soup that restores a person to good health?

According to an article by Nanci Baren* healers began prescribing the broth of the fowl as long ago as the 12th century. Noted Jewish philosopher and physician "Rabbi Moshe ben Maimonides used his 'fowl brew' to treat such things like hemorrhoids, constipation, and even leprosy. He strongly believed and especially praised the brew's healing power for respiratory illnesses like the common cold."

Breaking chicken soup down to its natural essence, scientists will tell you that chicken soup is full of amino acids, beta-carotene, Vitamin A, and anti-oxidants. But one doesn't need a Bunsen burner to know that it is the warm, chickeny goodness of the soup that makes you feel better. When heated to perfection the broth keeps you hydrated, while the poultry vapors open up stuffed sinuses.

However, the combination of chicken, carrots, onions, and celery is no pharmaceutical elixir. No, the fowl broth needs a little something extra to work its magic. Georges says he thinks the special ingredient is love. I think he may be on to something.

Merry ME

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