Think about the last time you showered. Removing your clothes, adjusting the water to the perfect temperature, the sound of it rushing from the faucet. Were you rushing too? Sometimes, this will be the only solitary time we get in a day.
So much of creating our spiritual experience is tied to learning the truths, half-truths and not-truths of our parents and our parents’ parents. They probably told you at some point you needed to bathe because you were dirty. They meant it literally. Dirt under the fingernails, layers of sweat and mud from playing.
Bathing has been a thing since always. The ancient Romans built giant bath houses. These served as community centers where courtships were sparked and business deals were made. During baptism, participants are immersed and proclaimed spiritually new, as in a birthing. Ritual purification is a part of all wisdom traditions including Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and Native American. At Tirta Empul (Holy Spring) in Bali, offerings of flowers, fruit and incense are made to the gods in hopes that dreams will come true and luck will be bestowed. Cultures all over the world hold water in reverence for its healing and cleansing properties. Symbolically, water is the source of life itself.
In our western culture, it’s no longer the community experience it once was and the spiritual element is non-existent. For the most part, we shower once a day. We develop routines and preferences built around physical cleanliness. Removing dead skin cells, clearing away the dirt of the day. That’s lovely. Feeling fresh is lovely. But there’s more going on in those daily suds.
The work of Dr. Masaru Emoto shows us how water carries energy. It responds to words and music. Beautiful crystalline shapes, like snowflakes, form when words like Love and Gratitude are used. Imagine! A waterfall of love in your bathroom!
Ceremonial Showering is an opportunity to harness this power. Harnessing the power of restoration and rejuvenation as a daily practice is a way to connect with the feminine and take a super-power-pause. When we show up for ourselves in these small but mighty ways, it allows us to show up more powerfully in the world. Taking time to absorb the experience enhances the fullness of self-connection.
Turning your shower into ceremony means being fully present. Next time you’re getting ready pay very close attention…
Tune In to the sound of the water. Notice where it hits your body first. Is it the curve of your calf, the pebbles of your toes, or the dip of your collar bone?
Play with setting intentions before that first foot hits the tub. Take deep breaths as you turn on the water and take off your clothes. Have fun exploring these sensations.
Shift the Routine. If you always start the water and then take off your clothes, try removing your clothes first. Routine lulls the brain to sleep and these small shifts will signal to your subconscious that something special is happening. If you always use a loofah, switch to a wash cloth or sponge. Buy a new shower curtain for a change of scenery.
Stimulate Your Senses with texture and smell. Really feel that loofah, the squishiness of it. What color is the soap? Mine’s green. The same shade as pistachios and praying mantises. What does yours remind you of? Listen to meditative drums or the Acoustic Concentration station on Spotify. Put drops of eucalyptus oil in a small dish. The steam will disperse it. A natural opening happens in the warm water. Your skin actually relaxes. Be conscious of your enhanced ability to receive. Many have aha or clarity shower-moments. Partly for this reason.
Let your shower be a Holy Tub. Use the time to drop into the Sanctuary of Yourself.
Some examples of Shower Intentions:
May I feel Stimulated and Enlivened.
May I feel Warmth, Rest and Rejuvenation.
May I feel Invigorated and Refreshed
Hold the intention in your mind or say it out loud and let the water carry your words into the Universe.