Although I've never been formally trained in tea ceremony I've been greatly inspired by what I've learnt about Chinese, Taiwanese & Japanese traditions in developing my own personal tea ritual.
My ritual changes daily, sometimes I drink tea alone and other times I serve my partner or other family members. Depending on my company and location it transitions from being a meditation to more of a social experience. I thought I would share an example of my personal practice using some of our carefully curated tea wares...
The preparation for the ritual is the ritual.
First I boil my kettle. If I'm drinking Chinese or Taiwanese tea then I boil to 100°. If I'm drinking Japanese teas I only boil to about 80° (drinking many types of green or herbal tea too hot can cause it to taste bitter).
Then I prepare my tea ware. If I'm drinking a Chinese or Taiwanese tea I use my Cloud Hidden Teapot. If I'm drinking Japanese tea I use the Susumu teapot, there are a few key differences between tea wares for different types of teas, but if you only have one teapot then it should be fine to use for whichever tea you're drinking.
To prepare my teapot and bowls (or cups), I rinse them by filling them with boiling water and pouring it straight out.
I select my tea; You can view our selection of traditional Chinese teas here and Japanese teas here. Here is a guide to the different types of Chinese Teas.
I find a comfortable place to sit. I use the T-42 Meditation stool, but you can also create your own set up with a cushion and tea table you have at home.
I place the tea leaves in my teapot. If I'm drinking Chinese or Taiwanese teas, I rinse the leaves first by pouring hot water into the pot over the leaves and pouring it straight out again into a bowl or the garden if I'm outside.
Watching my breathing and using slow, deliberate movements I pour the water from my kettle into my teapot, waiting a few breaths and then pouring from my teapot into my bowl. I slowly lift my bowl and drink from it. As I do this, I am focusing my attention on the present moment... the flavour of the tea.. the steam dancing around my bowl.
I continue this practice, noticing how the flavour of the tea changes and evolves as I drink each new bowl.
The way that most of our traditional teas have been processed makes them perfect for this practice, as the leaves will continue to make strong, flavourful tea for many pours.
When I'm ready, I stop pouring and sit in meditation or I get up and begin my day.
I find the Bel Meditation candle is a wonderful tool for bringing me out of my meditative state gently after a specific time.
Whilst we can take inspiration from others, I believe that we can all create our own rituals. If you feel inclined, please share yours in the comments below.
Shop our collection of teas & teawares. All the teas that we source are high quality and are free from chemicals in their growing and processing.