Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Cleanliness and Godliness

Did you ever spend time in someone's house that was so clean and tidy it was scary?  My grandmother, who was always up to her and everyone's ears in the clutter of projects, i.e., not tidy, would comment about their neighbors whose home was always manicured perfectly, but dead (in my words), not a book or magazine, no pets, no children.  My grandma liked it wild, like a pea patch in her foresty gardens.  

In Patanjali's yog sutras he invites us to consider shauch on the path to self awareness.  It means cleanliness, and refers to everything from our homes, our streets, our bodies and our minds.  The dark side of this we've seen in the most extreme historical examples, such as Hitler, who was a vegetarian trying to rid the species of impurities.  His ability to kill to attain such results shows the deep fear that motivated him.   

If fear drives our efforts to be orderly and pure, it can be deeply wounding to ourselves and those around us.  Being aware of this,  we can drop the fear (simply be aware of it, stare it in the face) and learn to love the fruit of our  efforts to practice  shauch, for example the time we save from knowing where our keys always are, or enjoy the wellbeing we experience through self care and good eating.   And sleeping, right.  Do you think we actually need sleep?  What do  you think?


Anonymous said...

i like your blog;)

have a nice day:)


Natalie said...

I need sleep and a clean house. I get neither and I survive, but i am miserable. :(