Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Enlightened Tea

“… Your own attention is what spiritualizes things. Attention to the meal you cook, the clothes you wash. Attention is love. And that’s transformative.”

Are you present when you prepare tea? Can you verbalize the steps involved in preparing the elixir that sustains you? I read this article from Body & Soul on the meditative possibilities of housecleaning [“The Meaning of Cleaning” by Amy Marlin, April 2010] and thought about my morning tea routine. How many steps are involved? Do I take advantage of the in-the-moment opportunity?

Here's what it looks like
Each morning at the behest of the cat or the alarm clock, I pad down to the kitchen. Almost always, I prepare the cat’s food first, fill the tea kettle and turn it on. While it cycles through its two minutes of preparation, I measure out two teaspoons of loose leaf tea, typically Earl Grey,  and though I love the smell I rarely stop top savor it in the morning. The tea drops into my glass French press. Often I spill a few leaves on the counter.

Save or Toss?

I move between spacing out and watching the steam to billow our of the kettle, a sure sign that the cycle is nearly complete.
“Click” says the kettle indicating its doneness.
A sound I recognize with almost Superwoman-like power from almost every room in the house.  I pour water just to the silver band ¼” from the edge of the top of my glass press. The plunger top on, the long silver plunger erect and ready and pull out a cup. On this morning I skip heating the cup—conserve water.

By wrote I add sweetener, then a squirt of organic milk. I’ve tried many times to break the sugar fix in my tea, but nothing doing. A quick peep at the clock to determine if its time to plunge. When preparing tea for others, I am a meticulous timekeeper, but for myself—a little weak or strong  is no biggie. Did I start at 8:06 or 8:09? Well, it looks done enough! My favorite part, I slowly press doe the plunger. The steeping successfully stopped, I pour the brew into my prepared cup.

Stir and enjoy!

Taking time to really ponder the steps I’d have to admit is enlightening.

Sharing the love of enlightened tea,


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