The drinking of healthy beverages has increased in popularity in recent years. People have begun to appreciate the health benefits while also appreciating Asian tea decor. While some of these new drinkers may benefit from the effects of the drink, few of them realize the drink has a diverse, cultural history. Frequently, the ceremony feature items; specifically used for drinking. The practice of consumption is based on a desire to achieve tranquility. Asian decor and ritualistic practicesadd to the ceremony.
The ceremony is frequently elaborate and needs a great deal of preparation. There are varying methods of ceremony from which a party planner can choose, and the ceremony embraces the uniqueness of the specific ceremony. In a regular ceremony the tradition is usually held inside of a teahouse outdoors. A lot of the planning is on purifying the site of the ceremony and the vessels used to prepare and serve the drink. Included in this purification is the cleansing of the host, which includes washing of the hands and mouth with fresh water.
The guests invited to the ceremony is usually small. Prior to the beginning of the ceremony, a main representative is chosen from the guests. The guests are then taken to an area of the garden that is sprinkled with water. They silently sit waiting for the host, ritualistically removing the debris and buildup of the outside world. When it is time to go into the room, the guests are greeted with a silent bow. Each of the guests clean themselves as the host has done, and the last person to enter shuts the door.
There is both water and fire in the ceremony, meant to stand for the philosophy of yin and yang. Ceremonies during daylight hours start with a gong and ceremonies at night start with a bell. The area is often filled with beautiful kettles, floral arrangement, and a decorated hearth. The host presents the paraphanalia associated with the making of the drink consisting of the whisk, the cloth, and the scoop for the leaves. Each of these items has a special Japanese name.
The items are purified and then the vessel is filled with the hot liquid. The host empties the bowl and dries it with the towel, known as the chakin. Each guest is presented with three scoops of leaves and this is placed into the communal bowl. It is whisked into a paste and then additional hot water is added. When the drink has reached the texture of cream, it is given to the main guest. The main representative bows and accepts it, observes the vessel and bowl and tastes from it, and then following wiping the rim, sends it to the next person. Once each guest has had a sip, the vessel is returned to the host for cleaning. At the end of the ceremony, the guests enjoy conversation about the ceremony.
A ceremony consists of more than the drinking of the beverage. It is spiritual and honors the materials used for making tea, as well as the drink itself.