The early religions may have been an unguided confused experiment with personality. Did the earliest upright humans have personalities? How did these evolve?
The natural world; geological, botanical, and animal perform unpredictable behaviors. The observing man casts these things, based on his emotional reaction, onto people in his life. A dangerous man is like a wolf. The ill-tempered man is a volcano. The animal may trot with a certain tempo, may have a mouth curvature like a smile. Our minds fill in patterns, things are compared to things.
We of course ate these animals.
Flavor can be used interchangeably with personality.
Plants may have distinct smells, infusing a set atmosphere on the senses.
Things geological, botanical, and animal could either support life, or take it away.
Flavors tasted and fears provoked churn a spectrum of feeling. Feeling works its way into expression. Into story. Into tapestries and mythology, fueling the feeling and regurgitating power into worship.
Taste gives a distinct character to something life sustaining. This has a most powerful effect on endorphins compared to any character one may read in a story.
Things that sustain life, they are divine, right?
Flash forward to our "rational"-esque culture. We like to think we're objective, we're not savages worshiping sun and thunder gods. We have refined tastes. We eat at nice restaurants. And we celebrate personality.
The chef tends to have a large personality. As we see on TV shows. The chef, like a fine renaissance artist, cultivates flavor through concoctions of foodstuff, life sustaining foods, and when flickered as an image in fire, or the TV set, invoked is a tendency towards reverence. The burning bush. Moses may have snacked on the mountain. We poke our plates in front of these intense cooking competitions.
We don't fear the character of lightning anymore. Unless we're out swimming. We're too busy practicing chef worship to concern ourselves with the elements. We're inside, eating, mmm, fucking good.
The ancient Gods were full of personality. Yahweh, what a loose cannon. Chef Gordan Ramsey, boy can he rip into you.
God is more-so a little tepid and faceless now, to balance monotheism with a touch of scientific reasoning. But we're back to our roots. Like a religious ceremony, food brings people together. And that bad-ass chef is on a higher plane, a colorful human being that is more holy than average office man munching.
Celebrities that make damn good food; our new pantheon.
The old testament God may have been a little too pissy for many to swallow (If only he made food though, we could all still swallow his presence). But a raging restaurateur on Iron Chef or the like is one that we fear. The parade of Instagramed pics of complex cuisine is a sign of devoutness: A commemorative kaleidoscope of foodie photos is a digital crucifix dangling necklace or Jesus fish young adults can get behind. An icon they'd proudly hang in their living room and adopt into their newly reinvented heritage.
The styles, airs, ambiances and renderings of ethnic cultures may be a bleed over, an aftertaste influenced by native spices and seasonings. The early cooks that collectively contributed to the Chinese cuisine, Indian cuisine, Mexican, and other food styles we love, were they revered in their communities as so?
We are what we eat; goes deep into our blood.
A mad respect, yes, is deserved though by the chefs. They bust their asses and appease our taste buds.
Recently I learned how to make a sushi roll. It was a sloppy attempt, tasty however, and I felt like a creator. I was high on my own power and feeling full (of it).