Lessons from the Tea Room

Lessons from the Tea Room

These four principles have been handed down over the centuries to provide guidance in the tearoom and can bring serenity to our daily lives.

To this day, they offer a gentle framework for approaching our relationships with others, both in everyday considerations and in times of particular conflict.

Wa (Harmony)

This is the ideal nature of the interaction between the host and the guests, and the interplay of the season, utensils used, food served, and prevailing mood at the tea gathering. It can be considered the ideal nature of the interaction between people in everyday life. It is a feeling of oneness with nature. and others, and a sensitivity to each other. Harmony leads to comfortable, drama-free relationships that can bring us a sense of peace. 

Kai (respect)

This comes from accepting other people, as they are, where they are.  It's also something we receive when we offer kindness and humility. Both, the hosts and the guests, treat the tea utensils with care and respect, and the guests gratefully appreciate the setting and details, which the host has prepared with them in mind. The host and guests are considerate of and present with one another, as we can be in our daily life. 

Sei (purity)

Purity refers both to the importance of cleanliness and the attention to detail in the tea ceremony. As they walk into the tearoom, guests transition from the noisy, dirty world of everyday life into the pure, quiet space of the tearoom. Sei also refers to a purity of heart and freedom from attachment to things and status, reminding us to seek out the best in one another in a trusting, caring, nonjudgmental way. 

Jaku (tranquillity)

Jaku is an active state of stillness - a feeling of serenity. Remaining calm, whatever is going on in our lives, allows us to think clearly and respond appropriately. The bamboo tree thought to the Japanese culture how flexibility is strength. The bamboo is growing all the time, and is also sensitive to its dynamic environment. It's firmly rooted, but flexible. When the wind blows, the bamboo doesn't resist;  it lets go and moves with it. And still, the forest grows. The ones that survive the shaking are those that can move when the trembling begins. 

Stability can make us feel safe, but it is a misguided assumption that things won't change because everything does. 

Now, start your daily routine with a delicious cup of tea, and remember to be mindFULL!




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