Tea -- the ritual, practice and ingesting of it -- alters both our perception of and our relationship to Time.
Drawing paralells to fighting Taichi, and other internal forms of martial art, we practice slowly so that we might then in turn move at the speed of the mind.
Tea ritual which is often maligned by the confused and uninitiated as being slow, boring, or effete, has the power to move both heaven and earth -- bending reality to suit the whim of those who truly know their way around a teapot.
The amount of time, patience and practice required to attain such levels of great skill or gongfu, is dependent entirely on the individual. It could happen overnight, over the course of years, or even
several incarnations. As with most things worth learning, the main barrier to entry is the knowledge such power is available in the first place.
The Dao De Jing (a Chinese classic text which is also a foundational work of Taoism written around 400 BC and credited to the sage Laozi) implies it, the Upanishads proclaim it boldly. There is certainly time and place for both quiet and bombastic approaches.
The stated goal of the ancient arts, which here I extend to all worthy candidates -- art, music, poetry, gardening -- is to transcend the limits of not only the body, but of Time and Space. Far fetched perhaps to those still living a refusal to the call of the Heroic journey, commonplace for those brave enough to wreath themselves in life rich & effulgent tapestry.
To move forward quietly, humbly, nobly -- as if unseen -- this is often suggested as the safest rout up the mountain. The summit of which having once been reached, we may then walk upon the air, and soar with the ancient gods of thunder and wind at our backs.
Good tea beckons us to embrace our birthright of magnificence.
Written after drinking three small cups of Man Song.
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