Thursday, August 2, 2007

Enjoying a Cup of Tea

Yesterday when I went for a cup of tea with my colleagues, as usual we started chatting about office, about work etc.. We stayed there for nearly half an hour and we did not even know when we had finished drinking tea.

Most often than not, all of us do various things without even being aware of what we are doing. Our physical body is probably doing whatever it needs to but we are not there in totality. We drink a cup of tea without even knowing what is going into our system. We are busy in our own world, the dream world, the fantasy world.

Even if we are not with someone with whom we talk, even if we are alone and drinking a cup of tea, we are least bothered about tea. We call it a tea-break but just think about it. Is it really a tea-break?

What do we mean by a break? We would ideally like to relax ourselves, our body and mind. But what do we do? When we are doing something as simple as walking to the canteen, we are constantly thinking about work. Our stress and worry which was at the office desk are being carried by us as we are walking, as we are drinking that cup of tea and as we are going back to the desk.

So where have we taken a break? Swami Nithyananda says - when we wake up, our mind is already in office; when we are at office, our mind is already at lunch break; when we are in the lunch break, our mind is already thinking about 5pm and when we are back at home, our mind is already thinking about office...

Our mind is never there where we are. In our previous post, we gave you three techniques. When we apply those techqniques, we start to build an awareness about whatever we are doing. When we start living in the present moment, with our mind and body together, we start to see a complete relaxation happening automatically. We do not need any other kind of relaxation, even our work becomes a relaxation (more on this in another post...)..

When we are aware of our mind and body, we start to enjoy every single act. When we are drinking a cup of tea, we enjoy the very drinking. When we have a plate of food with full awareness, we enjoy every bite of it. The same goes with work.

What else can be relaxation? Conventionally, when we say we want to relax, we mean we want to enjoy being completely stress free, being completely thoughtless. This is exactly what meditation helps us to do. It helps us to be in the present moment and enjoy every second. How easy to relax, isn't it?

Just by being aware of what we are doing, just by bringing our mind and body together, we eat when we are eating, we drink when we are drinking, we work when we are working. The entire day becomes a relaxed extended break!

- Sri Nithya Arpanananda

6 comments: said...

Read this comment in a Buddhist discussion board:

"My brother's dog is the most zen-like being I know. He totally lives in the moment. He doesn't think about the past or the future. He doesn't think about what he just did or what he's going to do. When he plays he plays. When he eats he eats. When he craps he craps. When he sleeps he sleeps. When he chews a bone, his entire focus is on that bone. And that is his entire life. I wish I could do that."

Being human, I wish I not only could do that all the time, but also realize that I am doing that! :)

Ma Nithyananda Arpana and Sri Nithya Arpanananda said...

Hi Rajendra

Nice one.. Thats the difference between us and the dog .. isn't it? :)


Suchitra said...

Rajendra, an interesting discussion.. Earlier I had spent some good amount of time internalizing this. Tell me, when you are truly aware that you are doing something.. let's say 'reading', even the thought that 'I am reading' disappears. The awareness is there but the thought isn't. Perhaps this thought is the bridge to the no-thought zone of awareness.

Now, when a dog chews a bone, completely immersed in it, there are no thoughts again, but just complete involvement in the action.. completely in the present moment. Why is this any different? The dog is fully alert, immersed and in meditation when it chews the bone... isn't it?

Ma N'Arpana said...

Ma N'Arpana...

Meditation is a spiritual introspection, at least that's wot the Dictionary says.

If you are asking whether the dog has buddha-nature, then I can't answer any better than Joshu: Mu!

But if you are stating that the dog is meditating while being in present state, I would like to differ on that. A dog doesn't have the capability to self introspect. Yes, to some extent it is aware of itself, but not to the extent needed to meditate.

The dog while performing its actions, is also equally involved in reacting to the outcome of the actions. It's true that it is in the present moment and is not wandering its mind in past/future thoughts (simply because its incapable of doing otherwise), but its not a yogi, a karma yogi to be precise! In the future, may be, if Darwin's theory stays good, you might have a dog which starts thinking "Who am I?" Then, you might see a Great Swan rising from the dog-world!

Until then just be grateful that you are still human and are capable of meditating! (That's what Adi Sankaracharya says in Vivekachudamani... don't waste this precious human life by not seeking for the Ultimate!)

In Nithyananda...
Rajendra from the Dog-eat-dog-world!

Ma Nithyananda Arpana said...

Nithyanandam Rajendra!

Thanks for the comment and bringing clarity to the discussion. As you put it rightly, awareness is the key. Penetrating the present moment "with awareness" is what is missing in the dog!

And yes, let us not waste this precious opportunity - of having this human birth and of being in the company of a living enlightened Master. :)

As N! says in the video (that you just linked us to), look up before the swan is gone!

In Nithyananda,
Ma N!Arpana said...


"These three things are hard to achieve, and are attained only by the grace of God - human nature, the desire for liberation, and finding refuge with a great sage. 3

"He is a suicide who has somehow achieved human birth and even manhood* and full knowledge of the scriptures but does not strive for self-liberation, for he destroys himself by clinging to the unreal." 4


*Please don't think Sankara was a male chauvinist and lose the purport of his message. His audience had been men, and that too from a patriarchal society, and hence, he had to put a convincing argument! ;) If you are on the path towards liberation, then you surely have the guts, usually attributed to men, to shed your lower self for the Higher!