Aparigraha means “non-hoarding” in sanskrit. It’s one of the disciplines listed in the yamas & niyamas (which I’m not going into now, but will try my technological best to link you to here) in the (enormous) greater body of yoga philosophy.
I like another definition of Aprigraha as a “loose grip”. So, I could say I have a loose grip on my car. It is my car, but if I lose it, or if it breaks; Grrr!Shoot!Crap! – but, okay. The practice of having a loose grip obviously applies to our stuff such as a car, clothes, home, kitchen appliances, whatever YOUR STUFF is.
But, it of course has to crawl under your skin and get you where it counts. It also applies to your emotions, beliefs, regrets, moods, pride, shame, memories, all that thinking/feeling stuff going on inside of you that only you know about. How do you have a loose grip on that you ask? Well, por ejemplo, my husband and I got into a fairly familiar, routine argument last night. My side of the argument was so brilliantly crafted I amazed myself. And would not let it go. I kept wanting to show it to my husband even after the argument had started to evolve into growth and healing, and my husband was suggesting we make a different kind of plan to help things. I was smugly resistant. He said, “Rachel, you can either decide to stay mad or move on so we can work towards something better.” I was humbled, felt myself melt into an exhale, and gratefully accepted the help in loosening the vice grip on my mind.
And of course the loose grip (or lack thereof) on our external stuff is usually about “our stuff” on the inside. Like the jeans in my closet that I ROCKED (before I got married and had a baby). Like the box full of bank statements of regret from a time that is long done and gone in my life. Like the books I should have read long ago had I ever really been that authentically interested. Hm.
Aparigraha. Non-hoarding. Loose grip. Letting go of what no longer serves you and holding on (loosely) to what does (for the moment). Allowing myself (and my closet) to evolve, change, and transform as I am, have been, and always will change.