Writing about silence seems self-defeating.
In the midst of the manmade silences that we often experience now – ones with white noise constantly humming away in the background, the ones that get a surprise intrusion by an aeroplane flying overhead – i have discovered true silence that transcends space and time and takes us into the unknown, in the midst of strangers, connected through the virtual space with which we all are, by now, surely, well-acquainted, Zoom.
At this point, I have been practising Cha Dao daily for about nine months now, and have experienced so much beauty and connection through Tea.
But I am getting ahead of myself now.
Hello, precious being.
My name is LiYing.
I am also a student of Tea and facilitator of Tea Ceremony, bridging the sacred and mundane and carrying beings in anxiety overdrive to a place of calm joy in The Way of Tea.
Holding space with reverent silence for Tea with precious beings who come to still their minds and drop into their hearts, Cha Dao (The Way of Tea) became more than a daily practice － it became my devotion. As I come back to this space to learn to unlearn, to listen without judgement, I also lift the veil that so often separates us from each other.
Before Tea and I met, I have come to know silence in Her many forms. The silence on a static line. The silence that precedes anger. The silence that I can sit with forever with bowls of Tea. Silence encompasses all the emotions. In silence we find ourselves, and in silence we may lose ourselves.
Silence may suffocate; silence may uplift us. Silence can be revealing. Silence can be suspenseful.
But when silence is held with the presence of Tea, silence is a softening towards the soul and a path to the heart centre.
“Walking the Way of Tea” would mean building up from a veneration of all things － from the simplest to the most profound. We find calm joy (安樂) in things with no names; in simple silence, in falling leaves, in boiling water, in taste buds refreshed by sips of Tea.
In my work I also help women who are seeking to heal their disordered eating to get out of fearing weight gain, obsession with food, destructive loop of negative self-talk, relapsing over and over again so they can live feeling good about their bodies unconditionally, eat without any guilt and be guided through life by an inner intuitive compass － without spending years and years in therapy.
This work takes me into a deep, dark cavernous womb, the underbelly of past anguish and current warped states of mind and emotions.
I allow silence to guide us. I weave silence that comforts, that sits gently to soften these women’s hearts, so that they remember the great sacred joys of the Mysterious Feminine energy we all possess.
We remember our infinite self, and through this remembering we become as peaceful as the sea in the morning. We remember a land before time, the Inner Earth that connects us all with the roots of Mother Gaia and all the celestial beings around us. We remember the temple that resides within us. We remember we are the light, the stars, the moon and the sun, the Thousand Things, as the sages called it centuries ago.
It is with this harmonious coexistence with silence that I now go into each ceremony that I hold.
Recently I had the grace to join WanderWomen‘s Full Moon Wander, this time in person, linking hands with beautiful women who came together to find camaraderie and inner peace.
I walked through the tracks and the sandy beach, lay on the grass in meditation and listened to nature move and reverberate through the skies above us.
A different quality of silence.
It is through such beautiful silence that our minds could quiet down and our souls could get to work.
Within this silence is the surrender that is required before our souls could get to work – in other words, this is where we can get into the zone, the no-mind’s land where we could allow the presence beyond us to flow right through us. Inspiration is after all, In Spirit.
Ever since then, I have felt a profound transformation in me.
I hold space now for silence – comfortable and uncomfortable alike – for how powerful is the medicine of unconditional, non-judgemental love for one? This is what I hope for you. This is what I hope for all who come to share in this space with me.
Drop from your head into your heart through a meditative tea ceremony experience guided by The Way of Tea facilitator and founder of When Still Waters Speak, LiYing Lim.
After a relationship breakdown, years of battling eating disorders and lack of self-love, LiYing first found her spiritual awakening in sound healing bowls, which has subsequently led her to a kundalini awakening and embracing a lifestyle steeped in daily meditation and yoga.
When she found tea in Hong Kong through Fivelements, and began to serve in the lineage of Tea Sage Hut. Through Tea, she found that sitting in reverent silence with tea can take her meditation and manifestations to greater levels. It was inevitable – she answered the call of the Tea Spirit by devoting herself to the teachings of The Way of Tea, Cha Dao.
Since then, she continues to absorb the teachings of various Tea teachers and masters, include Master Lin, tea master of Wu De based in Malaysia, as well as the teachings of the Dao and history of Tea Ceremonies in various cultures.
Under the tutelage of Pause Place founder Katie Abbott, LiYing has also come into the limitless space of working with various modalities – nevertheless, always leading with Tea – to bring forth love, poetry, presence and connection for spiritual freedom.
LiYing is currently training to become a Certified Facilitator for The Energy Codes with Dr Sue Morter.
Connect with her through www.whenstillwatersspeak.com