thai monk daily cleaning in buddhist temple

For at least one Hindu monk in Japan, cleaning is the art of cultivating the mind — not just removing dirt, according to an article on The Hindu website.

Visit central Tokyo’s Komyoji temple in the morning and you might see a dozen business people in suits and ties doffing their jackets and grabbing mops and buckets. For the next 30 minutes, they clean in silence. Then, the group shares a cup of green tea with Shoukei Matsumoto before starting their work day.

Matsumoto, author of "A Monk’s Guide to a Clean House and Mind," began holding these cleaning activities at the temple when he discovered the benefits of transforming the meaning of cleaning. For the monk, it is not a chore but a meditation practice.

Matsumoto, who holds an MBA from Hyderabad’s Indian School of Business, explained that while sitting still in meditation is not for everyone, “cleaning is relevant to all people,” the article said.

According to him, cleaning is the art of cultivating the mind, not just removing dirt. He rejects the idea that dealing with dirt is, well, dirty.

At Komyoji, an office worker said spends his mornings sweeping the temple grounds because cleaning is as important as drinking water and eating food.

The toilet is an area that Zen monks put a great deal of effort into keeping clean, for instance. They believe the Bodhisattva, Ucchusma, attained enlightenment in the toilet, making it a holy space.

Read the full article here.