The Zen of Sorting: Beyond Marie Condo and Into Chi


The Zen of Decluttering and Sorting.  This is a real thing.  I love Marie Condo and I always give her a nod of gratitude when I start to clear my clutter.  

But, this time it goes deeper than asking myself “does this give me joy”  before I toss it or keep it. This time, unintentionally I entered a new realm of happiness and apparently moved my Chi around when I tackled my left over coin collection that had accumulated over the past 20 years in random corners of my house.

The Chinese mastered an understanding of energy flow centuries ago with the practice of Feng Shui which now has become synonymous with creating balance in your home. But another layer, deeper than Feng Shui is the study of energy patterns known as “Chi”.

What is Chi?  “Chi is the main reason of existence of human life and a proponent that dictates the quality of health of the human body. It is believed that there is a healthy balance of chi in every one of us and health is determined by harmonious flow of chi. (Click on the link to learn more). In essence, Chi is energy and when Chi is stagnant or obstructed, as it is when we have a cluttered environment, it affects us on a number of levels, particularly energetically.”

Removing obstacles increases the flow of Chi in our lives. When we declutter we feel lighter and more balanced and happier and that’s what’s been happening this past week as I reclaim my home in a new way.

Besides filling trash bags, donating and painting, the biggest Chi release happened in the simplest of ways.

For some reason I have tons of loose change everywhere. I collected it in jars, tins and old backpacks. My husband and kids did too. And, no one ever rolled up those coins although we talked about doing it.  

Maybe I was inadvertently saving them for trick or treaters for Unicef. Who knows? But for some reason, the dreaded sorting exercise turned out to be an exercise of sheer joy.

Yesterday I was pooped. I decided to gather all my cans of coins together and sit at the kitchen table and sort them. I had no intention of doing this for more than a few minutes.

I took out 5 ceramic bowls and as I began sorting the change my mind became very calm and I felt incredibly peaceful. Thirty minutes had passed and I did not want to stop sorting. 

This dreaded task became a soothing and  meditative zen exercise. Pennies go there, quarters in that bowl, the bowl of dimes as light as feathers overflowed. Change from France and Spain were separated out. When would I ever go back to there again? I sorted and thought about how this is a thing. And I started to research it.

Zen sorting. It’s real. (Check out this link and read about it.)

Today I have just one large can left to sort. I’m not ready to let this exercise go. Maybe I will attack the CD’s next or all the pens, pencils and art supplies,  but I ‘m thinking nothing can top sorting loose change.

It’s the gift that keeps on giving. The other day, when I went to NYC for the first time in 6 months I was overwhelmed by the number of homeless. I searched deep into my fanny pack for dollar bills and change but I didn’t have much to share. So next time, when I get asked for spare change, I will be ready. I will no longer be digging for loose change as I plan to carry a baggy of sorted change to give away on my walks in the city.  And when I hear those amazing street  musicians I will seamlessly toss my  contribution in to their hats or music cases. And so it goes, paying this sorting of loose change forward released my chi into the world.  I gotta believe It’s all good.

 

 

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