TEA MEDITATION

by EMILY KASMAN

Tea

Being able to set time aside for mindfulness in the morning can trickle into everything that you do through your day. One of the best ways that I've found to do this is a Tea Meditation. Allowing the process of brewing tea to be the only thing that you focus on brings your mind and body to the present moment. This ritual helps to relieve stress and promotes the revitalization of the relationship with yourself. When you choosing to find time to take a break from the chaos, you acknowledge how wonderful the present moment truly is.

Engaging all five senses during the steps of boiling water, steeping the tea leaves and savoring the intricate flavors creates a powerfully mindful practice. We begin with choosing a tea that you enjoy. The senses of smell, sight, and touch can be enlivened in this step. Once you've chosen the perfect tea for your meditation, you'll next want to boil the water. However you choose to heat your water doesn't matter, but please don't do anything else while in this step. Listen to the sounds of the bubbles rising. Watch the steam evaporate. Feel your own breath as you enjoy marinating in the sensational adventure. It's all about the little things that capture our attention in the present moment.

When the water is at the accurate temperature, it is time to steep the tea leaves that you've chosen. Place about 1 teaspoon of tea (per 8 ounce cup) into a strainer. Pour the hot water over the leaves and watch as they unfurl. Smell the scent rising. Notice the natural shifts that take place when the hot water and leaves intertwine. Enjoy the delicate changes. After the appropriate steeping time, remove the leaves. Sit with the steaming cup of tea for a minute or so and soak up the warmth in your hands. Inhale the gentle stream of steam. Take in the color of the brewed tea and give thanks for everything that happened for the tea to arrive in your hands.

Begin to sip in your meditation. Observe the temperature. Pay attention to the flavors. Are they earthy, floral, or spicy? What do you taste on your tongue. How is the body of the tea in your mouth? Creamy, thin, full, heavy? Give your total awareness to each sip and savor the experience until your cup is empty.

Let this practice be absorbed into your body, mind and memory. You may just notice that it enriches all other activities that you choose to participate in throughout your day.

Tea Ready
Water Heating
Tea Steeping
Tea Pour
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