Tea & Me
Telepathic Space, in which we reconnect and find ourselves
"Tea is way out there in space. In Zen we say know who you are, be who you are."
▪ Wu De ▪
I love what my beloved tea sister has named it: Telepathic space - our energy, our vortex, may be invisible, but it is more discernible than anyone can ever imagine. It affects people in our field. It changes the atmosphere of a room.
We often see ourselves as an infinitesimal being in the whole of the universe, but this infinitesimal is made of stardust and we shine our own light in our own way. When we sit with discomfort - as I would do once in a while in meditation - we allow ourselves to sit with stillness, and in stillness we can find means to clarity and acceptance. With the Tea spirit I can accept the beauty in simplicity and come back to my heart space with no judgement, because Tea teaches us always. She humbles us and has filled my roots, drawing them deeper and deeper into the soil of my inner being.It is always when I am sitting in silence with Tea that I feel this immense gratitude, love and light, as my third eye chakra opens up to absorb the bright, endless abundance of light showering down on me, transmuting from sip after sip of this hot steam and dark liquid. I don't know what it is, but She never fails to weave Her magic, quietly, to allow the essence of my higher self come through - our higher selves that always know that we are abundantly blessed and loved, our higher selves that resonate with the Universe's unconditional love for each and every one of us. We may feel so alone and forlorn in this world at times; we may feel like we need to keep giving and compromising to be loved and acknowledged: how about instead of all that pandering, we choose to sit still and root in?
Not too long ago, I became disillusioned with my own life.
I had everything I ever wanted － a job of which I had always dreamt, working in a highly reputable media organisation of which I had always dreamt; an amazing boyfriend, a beautiful albeit humble flat in an area of Hong Kong I absolutely adored.
A feeling that this was not it began to grow stronger and stronger.
I threw a huge request up to the Universe: "Please show me the way!" 🌃
There were conversations and thoughts I would have loved to share with a community I know would get it and not judge me.
And yet I was not surrounded by people who understood me.
It brought my self-esteem down low, to the point where I didn't dare to write the way I would have loved to write on social media, to the point where I simply shoved that romantic, spiritual side of me into a closet.
🚨 "Foolish girl, head in the clouds!"
🚨 "Oh please don't talk to me about those woo-woo sh*t."
And then one day, an invitation landed in my email inbox:
✨ "Would you like to come for a Tea Ceremony?" ✨
Why not, I thought, I love Tea. 🤷🏻♀️ Never heard of a Tea Ceremony, but why the hell not.
I walked into the new space, which was merely a couple of floors above my office, and was instantly overcome with a veil of calm and otherworldly aura.
As the door to where the ceremony was held drew open, I was mesmerised by the grace of the woman sitting behind the table, one hand on the lid of a teapot.
Incense was drifting up into the air.
The room was filled with people gathered around the table, but all were silent.
I took my seat on the cushion laid out for me and I watched as she prepared the tea, hands dexterous and intentional with every turn she took.
Finally, when I was served with a smile and the bowl straight from her heart to me, something tugged me from my core.
I took my first sip.
And suddenly, I realised, the search has ended.
I was no longer feeling inadequate and never good enough.
I was no longer feeling like there was something more out there for me to achieve and prove.
And from within the bowl, as I took another sip of the wonderful fragrant liquid, I heard:
"You must be brave. You must serve Tea."
After that transcendental experience, I was not sure what it all meant. All I knew was I had to speak to the woman who served me Tea.
I wanted to learn everything from her.
And yet I was scared.
It felt like a major turning point. I felt deep down in my intuition, which was still slumbering then, that this was going to change my life forever.
It took me ONE WHOLE MONTH before I finally got in touch with her.
We had another round of Tea and when I plucked up the courage to ask her to teach me everything she knew and introduce me to her teacher, she said:
"Start from drinking Tea and learn Her language. That is all."
And I did.
I went to sit in her Tea Ceremonies everyday, sometimes twice a day.
I eventually began to serve alongside her as her cha-tong · 茶童 ·, water-bearer.
I listened as she spoke about the nature of Tea and Cha Dao.
I cleaned the Tearoom with her and various other students of the same lineage as hers.
I began to realise that I was going to leave my current job and this was going to be my destiny － to become a keeper of Cha Dao · 茶道 ·, The Way of Tea.
When I first started I would try to guess what Tea it was she was serving. I would ask questions of why she did this in this way, or how one Tea should be brewed.
Always, she would say, "It doesn't matter what Tea it is. How did you FEEL when you drank the Tea?"
Pretty quickly my mindset transformed. All else began to fall into place.
Divinely timed, her teacher came to Hong Kong and I got to sit with him before I pursued my life-changing course to the next phase of my life: a move to Edinburgh to live with my now-husband.
Everyone thought I was crazy.
Everyone still didn't quite get why I was so "obsessed" with learning something that seemed antiquated.
But I have finally found my centre of stillness, and there is no turning back.
I have since served over 100s of Tea Ceremonies online and am gearing up to serve in person even more now and launch epic programmes that will take you from surviving life to absolutely loving life.
And who knows where the Way will lead me next? But this time, I am at peace with change and the unknown, because I have an amazing practice, a lodestar to guide me... 🌠
I used to lie awake in the wee hours of the morning.
Wondering how I could change the world. 🤔
But now I know how. 🌟
And I know I don't need to try or do more.
I simply am already changing the world for its highest good! 💗
💃 By accepting all of me, the whole me.
🧜♀️ By simply being me, the whole me.
💫 By owning my voice authentically.
♥️ By loving me entirely.
🧳 By willing to put down the story that weighs me down.
🩸 By willing to close up the bleeding wound and stop blaming others.
🤐 By willing to step out of the cordons of fear my mind likes to draw between what feels comfortable and familiar and what is not.
🎐 So know this: your dream career/life doesn't have to be the be all end all, and life is ever changing so be open to where it leads you! And no, you don't have to work in a job that you hate because it is "life".
Life is what YOU choose it to be.
The day I chose to stop arguing for my smallness and go for what I truly want, I chose to choose me, forever and always. 🥀