Teaism and Happiness


Completely off the Topic of Tea

Teaism and Happiness

Postby Libertatis » Dec 8th, '05, 05:13

First off i just want to say that discovering White Tea has changed my life (for the better :)) I know that is a weird thing to say, but hear me out! The first time i tried white teas I disliked the taste. (thanks for nothing bagged supermarket tea!!!!) When i finally obtained some high quality white tea i was very uncertain about the flavor. It was very light indeed, almost too light for my unsophisticated palate. I did not give up though and continued to experiment. I was determined to discover why so many philosophers and connoisseurs heralded its purity.

Then one quiet evening i was drinking some white tea (white peony) and suddenly everything fell into place for me. It was during this epiphany that i realized the reason i was unable to understand this subtle tea was because my philosophy on life had become convoluted. Like most americans (and people from wealthy countries in general) i have lived my life surrounded by a sea of hedonism and escapism. The reason that i could not understand white tea was because i was expecting instant gratification (in the form of sugar, or other arresting flavors). Because of my arrogance i had completely missed the subtle beauty that lies in this tea.

It was at this point that i realized i must change my approach to tea; and to life in general. For me drinking tea is no longer about feeding a caffeine addiction or demanding instant pleasure. Drinking tea is a way of accepting reality, of coming to terms with your own being and appreciating the beauty of nature. White tea is the antithesis of escapism. It is the celebration of existence. Now that i can understand this beautiful tea my taste buds have been awakened to sensations and flavors i never dreamed were possible. Each cup is a journey filled with beauty and new discoveries. The complex and reflective nature of Yinzhen tea is truly an experience to behold!

The most wonderful thing about teasim is that the benefits and insights gained from drinking tea are flowing forth in every aspect of my life! I am a much gentler person now, and i am much more receptive to the feelings of others. I am also a happier person. The meditation spent while drinking tea has given me great insights into the meaning and enjoyment of life.

(I should mention i have only been drinking white tea for 1 month, and i am amazed at how far i have come. After a few years of drinking white tea i feel i could write several books on the subject. And who knows, after a few decades of meditating on this tea i could probably open my own monastery!)

also, since i know someone will ask, I did not put any hallucinogens in my tea! I drink only pure, beautiful, and truthful tea.
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Postby PeteVu » Dec 8th, '05, 14:09

<tear>
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Postby Libertatis » Dec 8th, '05, 15:47

Thanks for the kind comments! I wrote it last night, i wasnt aware how long it was LOL i bet the length scared most people away! :roll:
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Postby jzero » Dec 8th, '05, 16:09

Hmm...for me, the tea _is_ the escapism. When work gets frustrating or tiresome, someone on my team is sure to call in a tea run. "We've got a meeting at 3...let's make some tea first!"
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Postby Alexis » Dec 18th, '05, 23:08

That was awesome! It's amazing the wisdom that comes forth from the simple act of drinking tea.
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Postby jogrebe » Dec 19th, '05, 03:55

Libertatis, I found your philosophy of tea insight to be very interesting. Like yourself (to a certain extent), as time goes on I've found myself shifting from the stronger Ceylon and Indian teas to the lighter and more subtle Chinese teas as time goes on. While I am still drinking mainly black teas, I have started to dabble with a few green and oolong teas (Dragonwell, White Monkey and Ti Kuan Yin) and after enjoying them, I plan on picking up the white tea sampler as well as some other green and oolong teas with my next order with Adagio. Although I'd say that my discovery of Pu Erh tea (I take that stance that Pu Erh is also a type of tea in of itself) mirrors your discovery of white tea to a certain extent. For me Pu Erh has changed my outlook towards tea and my ability to appreciate it as it is, (as compared to dumping in a teaspoon or two of sugar to cover things up) as the mellow and earthly flavor of Pu Erh really grew on me as time went on and it soon became the first tea that I started drinking without sugar. As time went on this outlook carried over to other teas as now for the most part I view any tea that it not drinkable without sugar as not being worth reordering when it runs out, with very few exceptions (primarily Chai which I make the traditional Indian way with milk and honey).

I must agree with you that there is a certain spiritual element to tea that can not be denied if one takes the time to slow down enough to really enjoy it. At the same time as a Christian, I believe that God clearly knew what as it is undeniable that God knew what He was doing when He created Camellia Sinensis as a gift for us to enjoy. In a similar sense, I believe that it is possible for one to worship God while enjoying fine tea, just like while appreciating the beauty of nature. I also see a bit of a connection between tea and the Christian value of sabbath, as just like one has to slow down to enjoy tea the same holds true for life in general. All too often we Westerners are literally killing ourselves trying to live the fast pace life, while viewing slowing down and stopping to rest as a sign of weakness, when in fact its a necessity to be able to maintain one's spiritual, physical and mental health. At the same time, I must admit that I am a bit confused by the nature of the insights that talk about gaining through your meditations on white tea. Are you referring to the value of slowing down to rest, such as your comment about white tea being the antithesis of hedonism and escapism? If not, or if there is more to it than this would you mind explaining as I would like to better understand where you are coming from.
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Postby AlTeavious » Jan 22nd, '06, 22:17

I first started drinking tea as an outgrowth of practising martial arts. Wooed by the health benefits I began drinking nothing but green tea - from tea bags, with boiling water. 50 or so painful cups later I had developed a taste for green tea and thankfully had stopped using boiled water ;-) My first white was pai mu tan. One day I was sitting drinking a pot when I realised that I was smiling, I was completly content and probably the happiest I had ever been. Tea has become a major part of my life. Now that I've moved to the U.S. I am very happy to have so many great sources of tea to draw on :-)
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