This cup of tea
In my two hands
Mindfulness held completely
My mind and body dwell
In the very here and now.
This is a gatha—a mindfulness verse by the Vietnamese monk, Thich Nhat Hanh. He has written many verses about daily, ordinary life, all of which are calls to be mindful, to be present in the life we are living.
I’ve always loved tea in its myriad forms! I drink it black—straight up, flavored, or with heavy cream; green—from genmaicha to plain to green mango (a favorite); white or oolong—both plain or with flavors; and all the many flavor profiles and subtleties of herbal teas (sweet, clarifying, floral, rich, fresh, spicy, malty, grassy, fruity…).
I bought my first tea pot and cups when I was in Vienna on a study-abroad program in college, I inherited some of my grandmother’s lovely collection (see yellow flower cup below), and the rest is history!! I seem to keep collecting… 🙂
There is something so satisfying about making tea and pouring it out of a beautiful pot into a beautiful tea cup. This beauty is a call to presence, just like the mindfulness verse above.
In fact, that’s what I love about mindfulness verses and tea. They are both about being present in and with the ordinary. Right here. Right now. Whether I am working on the computer, or taking in the outside air, or talking with a friend…they call me to present moment awareness.
Nothing fancy. No apps, no mindfulness bells, no expensive potions. Simple words. Simple tea. Simple beauty. Simple presence.
When I engage in mindful tea, it reminds me to come back home—to taste and savor the tea entering my body, to let go of habitual thoughts, to release stories, to drop into my heart and body and sense my embodied presence as it is right now. In this moment as I am holding or sipping my tea.
It’s a sacred reminder to take a sacred pause that brings us home to ourselves.
That’s why I created my new virtual program Tea Time with Katy. I use the metaphor of tea to welcome us home through seasonal teachings and practices as well as Q&A time. We’ll be gathering together on the phone 5 times per season during Winter and Spring as a way to practice opening to more presence together. Read more and sign up for the FREE Intro Call on December 10th, 2015 at 6 pm PT / 9 pm ET. (Note: This program is over, but see my current tea offerings–new Tea & Poetry Gathering coming soon!)
Give yourself the gift of up support to align your life around what really matters in the New Year!
What practices do you have that remind you to be mindful in your life?
p.s. Do you have friends who would love support in being more mindful? I’d love if you would share this link with them on Facebook!
2 thoughts on “Mindful Tea”
a beautiful cup.
thank you! which one? i love them both! 🙂