Zen- is a Japanese school of Mahayana Buddhism emphasising the value of meditation and intuition...
A search for tranquility and mindfulness is a common theme. We look to have peace in our everyday lives; look for different ways on how to incorporate it into our busy routine, and sometimes...even yoga & meditation can seem like a lot. How to go from here?
Wanting to learn more about simple meditation acts for daily life, I have discovered the world of teas (herbal, green tea, oolongs) that ultimately replaced coffee for me (although, I remind myself about coffee on some weekends).
The act of drinking tea can surprisingly, be meditative too! And as I was reflecting on this idea, I eventually learned about the tea ceremonies of Japan; and their power to connect individuals to harmony and serenity.
Kyoto is at the center of the Japanese tea ceremony culture, and Matcha tea is the heart of it. Matcha tea is a high-grade green tea, finely grounded into powder. During harvest, only the finest tea leaves are picked. It can be of ceremonial (the best of the best);regular (standard, usually labeled as "bio"/"organic") and cooking-grade (mainly used in desserts) types.
Having bought a bio matcha and having prepared it at home (there was a whole list of inventory to go with), I was astonished at how much it did for me! Instant relaxation, and peace of mind. Looking to find more of it, I came across a place called aux mille pinslocated in central Geneva, where a tea ceremony could be served.
A picture speaks a thousand words, but a video I guess says it all. I have prepared a video for you where you can see how Emiko Okamoto, a host of aux mille pins, tea masterand ambassador for Japanese tea in Switzerland has acquainted us with the tea traditions of Kyoto and modern variations on these traditions!
I look forward to finishing my matcha tea at home, going back to Mme Okamoto to replenish the supplies and this time, ask for a Matcha tiramisu recipe; to have this mouthwatering dessert accompany me in moments of relaxation while sipping a tea.:)
And how do you find time for meditation in your life? Let me know in the comments below!
Some more materials about matcha & tea:
Mei Leaf: Amazing channel to learn more about different types of tea, how to drink it, and just generally about tea culture
You can see how to make so-called shot of matcha (a concentrated matcha drink; though still not the most concentrated one) in my video above. You can top it up with more hot water to taste. To have the most concentrated option, you will need to make a paste (more matcha, less water and no foam)
A bit more about Kyoto tea ceremony