Of Rice and Words

Facebook Feed

Featured Posts


“You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it courageously.”

Follow Us

Mind Family

Of Rice and Words

by Kelly Corbet
Intention Energy Positivity Parenting Love

I have a middle schooler now, which provides more opportunity than I thought I needed to practice the power of words and intention (this is, after all, my second go ’round!) What I find helpful in times when, ahem, we aren’t quite communicating at our highest levels, is to think of rice. Not just any rice, but rice that has been subjected to negative or positive words (like the rice pictured above).

What? How could rice be affected in any way by the mere uttering of words? Fortunately, there is proof, thanks to (among others) work by the brilliant Dr. Emoto: he creatively illustrates how words visually alter things our eyes can see. He conducted a try-this-at-home experiment with two containers of white rice. One was “treated” with kind words, the other with unkind words. The rice that received loving vibes stayed beautifully pristine. The rice that essentially “got yelled at” became schmutzy. You can find varying degrees of shmutziness-proof if you Google “Emoto rice experiment,” but the results mostly lean the same direction.[1] Rice prefers being treated kindly (just like the rest of us).

At first, it seems surprising—impossible, even—that rice could respond to emotions (AKA our energy). We do know the human version, though. We’ve all probably felt the downward energy shift after a blurted salvo of accusations or any form of not-so-kindliness blasted our direction. We’ve also, no doubt, basked in the energetic afterglow of generosity, gratitude, and Love (given and received…they’re actually the same thing). Though we are not able to see the response changes inside our body, what we can feel alerts us that something is definitely different.

Remembering all this makes it even more meaningful that I do not bombard my beautiful pre-teen son with my own inability to witness his un-schmutziness, despite what things look like in the moment. So, when my darling, hilarious, joy-filled, glorious son forgets his innate perfection in loud and spiky ways, I remember the rice and try to remind myself to look past the forgetful behavior to his Real Truth!

It is not always easy, and I am not always greeted with success. And let me be clear: by “success,” I do NOT mean that my redhead has suddenly experienced a personality transplant and skips downstairs, while whistling, to pick up the backyard dog poop before the need even crosses my mind. Success has nothing to do with his momentary behavior. “Success” in this scenario is me maintaining an unwavering focus and my own equanimity (or, finding it quickly if it had thoughts of taking a vacation!) By doing that, I can model behavior that precludes yelling as default mode, and, moreover, keep myself in a Loving place, which is so much more the Truth of me than anger (ahh, the irony of this lesson!!!)

I’m hoping to report soon that my constancy of attitude and imperturbability have (finally!) been practiced to the point of mastery. Read: my son no longer provides me with frequent chances to remember our Truth. In the meantime, I will attempt gratitude (rather than irritation or self-censure) for the opportunities to hone my skills, and think of the rice! 


[1] Very interestingly, there are also experimenters who set out to disprove the power of sent Love. I’m not sure why people feel threatened by information that demonstrates our ability to change the world with our Loving thoughts...

Kelly Corbet is a writer, a long-time meditator, and quite a loud laugher who loves teaching Mindfulness 2.0. This mindfulness upgrade includes meditation instruction and practice, of course, but also tips and “peace hacks” to wrap all that mediation-induced peace around our dailyness and mobilize joy.

Though Harvard-educated, she’s learned that the most valuable information comes from within, and believes Love is the most real thing about us. Through her talks, workshops, and books, she hopes to help others remember just that!

-Already Here: the matter of Love, was published a few months ago.
-Love Lessons from My Mom: Important Stuff I Hope I Never Forget, was published by Celestial Arts in 2001.