“A kitchen chore will often tether us to a place: the sink, the chopping board, the stove. This is a good thing. On the surface, this tethering may feel like a restriction but it’s actually really helpful to restrict our options sometimes. This is in part what seated meditation is all about: quieting the external distractions so we can turn our attention inward in order to see more clearly what is happening there. Standing at the stove or a sinkful of dishes, it is possible to touch some of this stillness and insight while still in the midst of activity, especially if the task is simple or repetitive or one we know very well. Like chopping celery or stirring a sauce.

Think of this chore-doing as time for integration, where we can fold in the experiences of the day and assimilate the lessons learned – the mistakes, the triumphs, and all the mundane stuff, too. Taking time to allow the day to settle and register like this is a key component to a happy, richly experienced life. Rushing through a dreaded chore just to get it done is a missed opportunity; relaxing into the rhythms of simple work and allowing the body and spirit to align after a busy day is golden.

This is how when you wash the dishes, the dishes also wash you.” (Dana Velden-Finding Yourself In The Kitchen)

Neal J. Sivula @nealjsivula