From the slow deliberate ritual of making a cup of tea, to the conscious and sensual soft sips from a beautiful tea cup – A Tea Meditation is organically occurring.
When you consider a meditation practice I’m pretty sure drinking tea doesn’t automatically spring to mind. For me an image of a buddah like pose with finger tips turned upwards, legs crossed and eyes closed is far more accurate. And I do this. Often. Although my position isn’t always quite so perfect. Often I just lay down and feel my belly moving with each soothing breathe.
And thats the thing, meditation can come in all forms. It isn’t rigid or perfect. You can’t get it wrong. It is a sweet act of presence and tuning in. A chance to settle internally and create a space which wasn’t there before.
Gradually you ease into it whatever the form. It evolves into mindfulness and doing every tasks with care and peace. From lovingly cooking a delicious meal full of chosen ingredients and laying it down on a table with a simple white cloth and shining candle flame – the act and the chore has completely changed and shifted. It has become mindful and meditative in its own right because that is the state in which you prepared it. Your body will welcome and appreciate the vibration in which this gift was delivered. I believe your cells will respond better too.
For how else do we explain the experiment where 2 plants are spoken to differently each day? One with whispers of love and affection. One with harsh distaste and criticism. The former always thrives. The latter always fails.
There is more to this world than science. A whole lot more.
Which leads me to my little contemplation of whether the act of drinking tea can be deemed a meditation practice?
I believe so.
It is a ritual.
Make it what you will. You have that power.
Next time you fancy a cuppa try to do so with desired intent and consciousness. Get grounded into your body. Take a few deep belly breathes whilst the kettle boils. Observe your surrounding and the sounds which float about you.
Choose a tea cup or mug which feels aligned to your mood. Which feels right for this moment.
Pour the water into your desired flavour teabag and watch the alchemy of a few simple herbs and basic water.
Creativity will always fill you up.
Take your little cup to a place you can relax in. A favourite chair maybe. For the next 10 minutes enjoy the delicate and deliberate act of sipping and swallowing. Carefully. Gently. Softly and with gratitude and love. Give thanks for this time.
This moment. This flavour. Embrace it.
It feels comforting and it is certainly an easier beginners meditative practice than deeper work. It negates the resistance which occurs often when faced with meditation. Minfullness (in whatever form) can lead you gently into a meditative (om type) practice without resistance or effort.
Have a go and I’m pretty sure you will find yourself craving this 10 minutes of sanctuary each day. Make it a scheduled date with yourself and your tea bag.
For me, I started this beautiful practice when I gave up junk food. I missed the emotional rewards of devouring a big bar of chocolate. It was not so much the taste I missed so much as the experience. And whilst I admit that tea is no chocolate – the ritual and date aspect adds a whole new dimension to this experience. I have built a little stock cupboard of tea – some sounding nicer than they taste. And I started to collect vintage tea cups. They are beautiful and ornate and make me smile.
I am deliciously surprised how choosing to do anything with care and thought changes it so much. Intent is so powerful and we can put it into anything we choose. All we have to do is do it from that place.
So, let me know if a cup of tea has become a sacred ritual for you? Or if you like the idea of adding it into your day, or maybe as a bedtime routine? I would love to hear from you.