Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Dominican Vegan: Featuring some of my Living Food Dishes Part 1

A popular American dish served in diners are home-fries, sliced potatoes that are sauteed in pan, for breakfast. I made my own dinner version, which included yam home fries and a Caribbean style veggie fish. The veggie fish itself is made out of soy protein and I seasoned with my Caribbean spices.

This dish is my own adaptation of Caribbean and Indian/Chinese flavors all in one. The Chinese broccoli was flavored with sesame oil, among other spices. The tofu was cubed and flavored with curry. The rice and beans were made with herbs from the Caribbean.

A popular Dominican dish (from the Dominican Republic) is to cook the rice and beans together in a pot, seasoned with flavors. It is common to serve it with chicken, but my version includes veggie chicken, made of out soy protein. I cooked it Dominican style. The side dish is potato salad, which includes vegan mayonnaise providing texture.

Yucca is a root vegetable used by the Tainos in their diet. It is still widely used today. I boiled some yucca cut it into pieces, topped it with some soy butter, and added my own tofu scrambled with soy salami. Scrambled eggs with pieces of salami, green italian peppers, tomatoes, and red onion are common plates. I made my vegan version.

Inspired by the West Indies (Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, etc) whose foods are very similar to the Spanish Caribbean, I made curried potatoes with an Asian style sauteed broccoli, spinach, and carrot dish.

Perhaps one of the most popular Dominican dishes to Dominicans is the Mangu. A dish that's made by mashing the platanos with soy butter, topping it with fried red onions, and eating it with whatever meat or dairy product you want. I, of course, made it with sauteed tofu and some leftover beans. Yummy!

I love Mexican food and I am learning more about their unique historical dishes. One of my favorites is the guacamole side dish. I made my own. The chips you can also make them yourself out of corn flour, but I bought them at the store.

I am a vegan, who stopped cold water fish after deciding to obtain Omega 3's and other important brain nutrients from plant sources, like Flaxseed. However, if you still want to eat cold water fish, they are very important because of the Omega 3 oils, which is an important element for the brain. I cooked the veggie bacalao with some brown rice, and as side dishes aguacate sprinkled with lime juice and fried sweet plantains.

My own Caribbean lentil soup.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Teaching Philosophy Part 3

Education as a way of Life

Lost-Found Lesson #2 1-40

18. “What is the duty of a civilized person?
Answer: The duty of a civilized person is to teach he who is savage civilization, righteousness, the knowledge of himself and the science of everything in life…”

The Egyptians of the later dynasties had educational systems deeply founded on oral traditions with high regards and respect to elders within the community. In his book, Ancient Future, Wayne B. Chandler, describes the process in which concepts of truth become mythologized. It is through the assigning of human qualities to abstract concepts that one can comprehend its meaning. This knowledge was learned through interactions between the older folks in the community with the younger folks. Unlike Western society, the educational world of the child was not separated from that of the adults'. Children laid a helping hand to the adults while gradually adapting the skills and knowledge necessary for their growth. All this acquired knowledge and skill came from the elders of the community. This clearly shows how elders, unlike Western society, where elders are regarded as useless and put into secluded homes, hold a very important role within native/ancient/indigenous civilizations. Basic education for youth started at the home. Parents were in charge of instilling within their kids moral attitudes and views of life. Parents taught their children their community's ideas about the world, their ethical values and principals, as well as the application of other concepts. Through the use of through the use of science and concepts studied in existing philosophical works, such as the Book of Instruction, which contains information about how to lead a good life and which details the different aspects of morality (justice, wisdom, obedience, humanity, and restraint), kids drew out their understanding and talents.

Going by the Egyptian example, one can see how education is not merely designated to an institution; rather it is a process in which all members of a community are involved. There are no set structures, no separation between teacher and students. Education here is seen as a way of life, rather than as a part of life. Once people start viewing education as a process that should extend beyond the dedicated 6 to 8 hours a day, real learning takes place. It is important that students are socialized with knowing that education is not confined to a building. Learning takes place in all places, at all times, with different people.

Learning the truth about ourselves, our birthright as God and Earth/Allat, leads us into a deepening of our reality. Within my concept of education, students will learn through writing, reading, physical/spiritual development, and creative enrichment. This will be done through specific classes as well as the independent application and study of the student. The student is to question reality at every turn so that they are able add understanding to their lives. Those who are ready will use the Supreme Mathematics to further prove their creative reality. In the end, the focus will be on the students deepening of understanding and the drawing out of their natural talents. Students should then be prepared to share & contribute a unique aspect to the living truth of the original man and woman.