28 January 2012

Crochet as Spiritual Practice: What is it? & Getting Started

Having moved recently, my partner and I decided we'd check out a new spiritual/religious community. Upon visiting our chosen new fellowship, I learned that they had a set of free classes coming up. While a number of them were interesting, I was immediately drawn to 'Hooking the Spirit, Knitting Community'. It's about using crochet and knitting as part of a spiritual practice.

A spiritual practice is anything you do regularly (even when not feeling like it) that helps to quiet the busyness of the mind and for a short time takes you out of the regular flow of life, either into your inner space or connecting outward with the larger universe. Meditation, attending church, going for walks, writing poetry, and reading a specific book are all examples. Meditation brings you to your inner self, allowing you to reflect on life or to just find a moment of silence. Going for walks lets you experience the world around you and get in touch with something outside of yourself.

The class which I'm attending incorporates creating a blanket for charity. Each person works on at least one 7"x9" afghan block (usually in coordinating colors of donated yarn). Once we've got 49 blocks, we decide how to lay them out, pin them in place, and sew them together. Somebody crochets on an edging, and then the blanket is donated. Knowing that what you're making is for some one else, some one you will never meet, adds a special dimension to the spiritual practice of it.

When starting out with crocheting as spiritual practice, you'll want to pick out a pattern that's just difficult enough you won't get distracted. Be in a quiet place and do nothing but crochet for 10-15 minutes, preferably daily. Do your best to focus only on the pattern and yarn at hand. It may not be easy, but it's called 'practice' for a reason.

Try that out for a week and see how you do. Leave me a comment if you're struggling, enjoying yourself, or curious about how I'm doing in my practice.

1 comment:

  1. You know...you're on to something. I LOVE to crochet and it does bring me peace. I don't think about my job or something that disturbs me. It really is a blessing to be in that state of mind. Hope you have a JOYful day!!