Just a couple of weeks into this season, there’s still time to do your spring cleaning, that is, if you’re so inclined.
I was raised by a very squeaky-clean type of mother. My sister and I did a lot of the grunt work – basically taking our house apart – scouring, scrubbing, and sluicing it down, until there was a sheen and a shine on everything.
If you really knew me, you could see how this sort of upbringing has made spring cleaning anathema to me. I’ve rebelled against it for years until now. Until we moved into this beautiful, new, lustrous house on Mitchells Island.
Now I’m more motivated. As I de-cluttered and dusted shelves today, I found some treasures today. Those sorts of things that went missing after we moved in which I put down to: “Well, they’ll turn up one day.” I also found a dead green frog, inappropriately located, and sadly green no more.
It’s very yogic to launder and lave. It’s in keeping with the precept Saucha, one of the Niyama, the one that suggests that you have your things be unsullied and unsoiled. It’s true that when we and our stuff and our environment are all clean and wholesome, they feel re-invigorated. We feel energised.
If you’re a director of a yoga school, you probably have it written into your calendar to, once a year, take a broom to everything. You’ll wash all the equipment and maybe even put a lick of paint on the walls, or at least take the handprints (and footprints!) off them.
At the Yoga Shed, we’ll have our cleaning ritual at the end of the year, and, hopefully, we won’t find any more dead frogs, or mice or or skinks.
When cleanliness is developed it reveals what needs to be constantly maintained and what is eternally clean. What decays is the external. What does not is deep within us.*
*Patanjali’s Yogasutras, translation and commentary by T.K.V. Desikachar.