I hope you find these articles as articulate and inspiring as I did. I had to smile as one after another mentioned Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up. Now I know it is time for me to buy that book! My general rule is that when a book has been recommended to me by three different people, I know it is time to get it. When you read the articles I think you will agree with the accurate use of the word magic in relationship to tidying.
While it is not specifically mentioned, we can certainly imagine the delight a home or a classroom experiences once it is tidied. It is not unlike the feeling a garden has when it is tended. In fact there is a similar energy within the creative forces that inhabit a garden as to those that inhabit a home. And just as a garden withers away when not tended, so also can the life forces of the home. And we begin to feel an energy drain. Funny, isn’t it? You would think just the opposite. Wouldn’t all the work that goes into tending and cleaning things tire us, wear us out? Kerry’s suggestion to change the wording (and consequently, our thinking) from housework to home care makes sense when you think of how the word “caring” uplifts the soul. When you care about something you want to tend to it.
When you consider, as Jerilyn points out, the Shinto practice that there is life in everything, even inanimate objects like your furniture or clothing, perhaps that makes it easier to love those things. My daughter-in-law and I were sharing our thoughts this morning about cleaning and caring. We just had a marvelous surprise party for my son’s/her husband’s 40th birthday. So we were cleaning and tidying like crazy in the weeks and days leading up to the party. We noted how we each feel attached now to the upkeep of certain things that we gave special care to in our preparations.
Blessings on your spring cleaning and on your everyday caring! On another note, I am delighted to share with you the announcement of Part Two of our training program. Many of you have been asking for this for years, and our work with the Kimberton Waldorf School, and particularly with Chinyelu Kunz, made us realize that now is the time. Having Rena Osmer, an amazing and long-time Waldorf early childhood educator, agree to be the Co-Director sealed the deal!
The good news from the Aldinger household is that my husband Michael took his first steps since September last week! He is back in physical therapy and starting to walk with a walker. So many thanks to all of you who have held us close in your thoughts and prayers. I am hopeful that within a year I may be able to start teaching again in some of the trainings. I would love to see some of you at Kimberton for the Completion Program!
Cynthia Aldinger is founder director of LifeWays