Zen and the art of doing chores...

Washing up is always like therapy, and difficult doctor that I am, I try to evade it for as long as I can stand the ever growing reality of dirty dishes. But there is nothing that creeps up on you quite like something you are trying to ignore, and dirty dishes are no exception.

It is times like these that I bow in the wake of grease and grime and dirt. I roll up my sleeves, clean the sink of everything but the cutlery, arrange the wash in categories, clean the kitchen and pour a me a hot tub with suds.

I have come across many a way to wash the dishes, but none that come with such a sense of accomplishment and Zen as starting the process by washing the glasses, and ending the journey with a satisfying slurp as the last water drain from the sink.

What comes between is nothing less than a miracle as the cleansing ritual unfold, and more and more pans and pots, containers, utensils and modern living brick-a-brack join their kind in their designated spot. First the glasses, then the cups, followed by the plates, cutlery, pots and pans. Tupperware normally require that you pour a fresh batch of bubbles.

Everything in order, everything in place, and from beginning to end my mind is free to travel where it may in flow and serendipity. For some it may be a mindless task, but washing up for me, opens a rift in time and space. It allows my mind to roam without fetter, free to find the joy and peace there is in the tranquil flow of ritual and task, and it rewards me with a spanky-clean and sparkling kitchen, and the deeply satisfying knowledge of a task well done.

Washing up is like Zen if you do it the right way, just like all the menial tasks we indulge daily as a byproduct of technology and modern living. So why not treat yourself to a mind spa at every task you can? Who knows, your dirty dishes may end up as the pause you need and never knew you wanted. And it's fun!
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