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“Tea and Zen” Cultural Workshop Lightens up through the fragrance of tea

As an indispensable part of Chinese Culture, Tea Zen, also known as Tea Chan, is considered a daily life Chan practise through the integration of tea and meditation.

Organised by China Cultural Centre in Sydney and instructed by Venerable Juefang from Nan Tien Temple, a hands-on experience of Tea Chan practise was offered to those who are keen to enjoy an unwinding and relaxing environment amidst the rush of daily life. 

With a thorough introduction of the tea utensil sets, Venerable Juefang also presented the process and method of Tea Chan practise, which included the appreciation of tea, the warm-up of tea kettle and tea cups, tea leaves soaking, and tea tasting. She also emphasised the similarity between Tea and Chan through taste and philosophical perspective.

“Tea Chan culture is the specific embodiment of traditional spirituality of Chinese people in daily life. The core philosophy of Tea and Chan Culture is summarized into four Chinese characters – Zheng (正, Justification), Qing (清, Purification), He(和, Peace) and Ya (雅, Elegance), all of which represent the main philosophical essence in Buddhism,” said Venerable Juefang.

“I hope everybody can have a chance to explore Chan through tea while embracing harmony and feeling rejuvenated,” she added. 

Unlike drinking water, coffee, or even normal tea, Tea Chan aims strongly at peacefulness and purification, and ridding of egoism. Zen & Tea culture is a special form to cultivate the nature and temperament of people. To the popular explanation of Tea Chan Culture, four aspects will be included, gratitude, tolerance, sharing and the relationship establishment with benevolence, friendship and Buddhism.

Participants were also given the opportunity to serve each other and practise Tea Chan ideology, adding much jollity and a deeper sense of Chan culture.

“It’s great to come here and relax during a weekday, my mind feels very peaceful and refreshed after the workshop”, said one of the participants. 

Situated at Berkeley, New South Wales. Nan Tien Temple is one of the branch temples of Fo Guang Shan, founded in 1965 by Venerable Master Hsing Yun. With the literal Chinese meaning of “Paradise of the South”, Nan Tien Temple is the biggest Buddhist temple in the southern hemisphere. Since the opening of the temple in October 1995, it has been dedicated to promoting Chinese culture overseas, and become a new venue for local and international tourists.
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