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Tea Talk: Tea Whisk Japan
Tasting and Workshop on the Japanese Tea Ceremony

Souheki Mori of Tea Whisk - photo by May Hao Wang


by May Hao Wang

 

The second Tea Talk workshop on Japanese tea was given by Souheki Mori in the Wang Asian/American Center on March 29th,. Mori, who trained with the Japan Association of the Tea Ceremony, performed a tea ceremony and gave an excellent talk about the history and symbolism of the practice. She created the organization Tea Whisk in 2011. It introduces the beauty of the Japanese Tea Ceremony to America.


The whole process is like a well-produced movie. This was my first time watching a live Japanese Tea Ceremony. It is fascinating and it makes participants want to learn more about the tea practice and Japanese culture.
 

Dressed in a kimono, Japanese traditional dress, Mori started with the cleaning and preparation of the tea serving utensils. She prepared the tea by adding three scoops of matcha green tea powder to a tea bowl. Then, hot water is ladled into the bowl and whisked into a thin paste. The whole practice was really peaceful and involved with her full concentration and graceful movements.

 

Mori said that the practice of the tea ceremony is a path of spiritual growth. It gave me the chance, through quiet meditation, to re-discover and correct myself. She would like people to feel peace during her tea ceremony and hopes people can relate to the importance of the tea ceremony for relaxing. 

 

She also introduced some Japanese tea rituals. When participants enter the tearoom, they have to purify their hands and mouth. Then, they come through a small entrance by bending their body, which signifies the equality of all the participants involved. She said, Theres no difference in race, gender, ethnicity or social rank in the tearoom. Everyone shares the moment in the tea ceremony as an equal.

 

I went to the tea ceremony by accident and Im so glad I was there. I really regretted I did not go to the Chinese Tea Talk. But fortunately, the Wang Asian/American Center will hold another Tea Talk, The Korean Way of Tea, on April 12th. Here's a link to check it out:
www.stonybrook.edu/wang/other_programs/workshop_programs.html

 

Its a good chance for you to go to a peaceful and leisurely event on a weekend, sitting down to taste teas, and by the way, learn a bit of another culture, or even more of your own. Check out the many faces of Japanese Tea Talk with Souheki Mori at
aasquared.org/gallery/sbu-wang-aac-tea-talk-japanese-2014


Tea Whisk: www.tea-whisk.com

 


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