Since High School I have been on a spiritual journey. Most of the time I did not identify it as such but it was there. We are all going through one and they are just as unique as us. They start out magically and grow inside us and foster in reality. They can be started through simple meditation, yoga class or even attending a Tea Ceremony with a zen teacher. How ever it starts it will continue to grow and connections will form. It is a given that at some point you will connect with , what I will call, Pillars of Zen.
From experience as a child we unknowingly start practicing yoga. There is a large amount of play that happens and we test out our body’s ability to balance and bend. Slowly we become
focused on the task and get very involved in discovering new “poses”. It is the focus that is also part of meditation.
But for meditation it can manifest in another way depending on your lifestyle. I was brought up Roman Catholic and would intently focus on my prayer during mass. Through this experience I believe that any sort of prayer from any religion is a form of meditation. While they each have a differnt form they are all under the umbrella of meditation.
Where does tea come into this? While I understand that not everyone has the ability to find a tea teacher who also has learned zen, there are other ways to learn from the beverage itself. It does not need to be real tea it can also be an herbal blend. From this we learn to focus on making it. every step has to be attended to. Even if we are just putting on the kettle and pouring the boiled water over a tea bag, it is still a process that is very meditative. If you did not take out the tea bag from its package, fill the kettle and put it on, place the teabag in your cup and pour the boiled water over top. There would be no tea.
If you do not currently see one or more aspects in your life, then perhaps it is time to try them out or take another look. Yoga may not be called by name but you may be doing a series of stretches that are truly yoga poses. The same goes for meditation. Do you try to look inward and tame those pesky voices of the ego on your subway trip home? Then this is also meditation. As for tea, perhaps it is not tea that you drink. It could be juicing in the morning for your green juice, putting together a mix of lemon juice and ginger or even going through the process of making your cup of coffee.
They key thing is that you are still going through a series of movements to obtain a result. A lovely beverage that calms you and makes you feel good.
Do you see this connection between these pillars?