Sweeping Together

I just finished Tara Brach’s ten day Radical Compassion challenge with Sounds True. There’s a Buddhist saying about meditation that you’re either sitting in meditation or sweeping the garden courtyard. She spoke about how some people who meditate have meaningful practices that bring them peace and that’s important but they never leave their mediation cushion so to speak. So their practice doesn’t go much beyond themselves and their own inner peace. Tara says just as important as our sitting meditation is sweeping the courtyard, striking a balance between being and doing, much like the balance between inward and outward energy of Yin and Yang. ☯️
It’s hard to see sweeping as a form of meditation, and yet when we’re bringing a sense of mindfulness to sweeping it’s its own transcendent grace. I didn’t have money for heat in the winter when I was in college, and my Dad a long time meditator would brightly tell me “If you sweep your apartment, it’ll make you warm.” He’d given me old bank carpet with blue stripes that was DIY laid over our dingy carpet and linoleum in my brother and my cheap college apartment. On Friday nights in the winter when I was cold and feeling left out of the party college scene I’d sweep and get warm. Dad basically ruined me for vacuuming for the rest of my life. I still love to sweep. The vacuum doesn’t hold the magic of sweeping for me.
Tara’s call to action is that we sweep together. And that’s exactly how I see this 28 Day meditation course. We’re collectively taking Sharon’s meditation guidance and bringing it into our everyday lives, sweeping together.