guide to: tea meditation
“Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the world revolves, slowly, evenly, without rushing towards the future. Live the actual moment. Only this moment is life.” - Thich Nhat Hanh
A tea meditation practice is a very special, personal thing. We encourage everyone to find what suits them, and explore their minds, bodies, and love of tea individually. We often get asked “how do I meditate with tea?” or comments like, “I thought you were supposed to think of nothing when you meditate, how can you have tea?” So, we wanted to break down the steps we take when we truly focus on a moment of meditative silence with tea.
Prepare your set up: We like to choose our teaware and tea with intention. Being tea fanatics, we have many pots, bowls and types of tea to choose from, and each one feels like a different day. But, even without pot or mug choices, we recommend placing everything in order on the table or floor before doing anything else. Use teaware that makes you feel provides positive vibes to your moment in peace. This way, once you get going, everything is exactly where you need.
Focus on the sounds of the water: Starting with pouring the water into the kettle, listen to the sounds the water makes. The sound of the kettle filling up, the sound of the early stages of a boil, the roaring sounds of a full boil. Each step of the way, you’ll hear the water evolve if you pay attention. Focus on that, and that alone until the water is at the desired temperature.
Watch the tea unfurl: Depending on how you brew, will depend on how you experience this part. But, regardless of the method, we like to pay close attention to the color changes of the tea, the opening of the leaves, and generally just give all of our energy and focus to the leaf itself.
Give thanks: Once the tea is brewed, while we wait for the perfect temperature for our liking, we like to go through a few notes of gratitude. Each time, we are thankful to the earth for providing the leaves, water, and craftsmen who created the tea; ourselves for prioritizing our mental health and creating the time to have this tea; and a few other always changing list of what we’re grateful for.
Drink up: While we’re drinking each cup, we focus fully on its taste, the way our mouth feels, the way the liquid feels going through our bodies, and the lingering sensations that are left on our tongue afterwards. Keeping our attention specifically on the tea itself and the way it enters us, allows us to be fully present and get the most out of the tea, as well as out of the meditation.
Care for our teaware: We always make sure to clean each piece of the tea set well after use. It’s important for the longevity of your pieces, as well as is a therapeutic and meditative end to your session. Rinsing everything off, and putting it away to its “home” is part of the process for us.
We hope you enjoy your time practicing tea meditation if this is something you are interested in trying! We’d love to see photos of your set ups and hear about your experiences on instagram — give us a shout @onetea.co!