A Cup of Zen is a new series I have begun on my blog. The following is
The Cup of Life’s second post for the series featuring Katherine Bellman, lifestyle blogger. For more information and to be featured, please visit its page.
I am a student of tea, that will never change. After graduating from OCAD University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, I craved to learn more about the drink I had while I worked. I became infused in the tea community in Toronto and graduated from a Tea Sommelier program. My studies continue everyday as I am learning from the leaf and learning Urasenke Japanese Tea Ceremony from a local teacher. On my blog I am sharing a world that tea can take you to as tea is not just a beverage. It is a life and journey that continues on though time itself.
Sunday afternoon I decided it was time to take out my Japanese Tea Ceremony gear. To take time to reflect and practice. I had not practiced at all for almost a year at that point. Let me tell you that it went from just being a practice to a moment that shaped my thoughts for the rest of the day
I set up my yoga mat for after and placed my tools on top. With everything placed together, it reminded me of when I first practiced with my teacher in his tea room. It became very nostalgic.
Sen Rikyu once said when you “make tea, to make tea” and this moment reflected that. The world faded away with my worries as I followed each step. Cleaning my tools each way that was required and finally placing the tea inside the bowl. I had a laser focused practice to do just as Rikyu said, to make tea.
Drinking the tea again as part of the practice took me away. I felt like I was in a small tea room being taught again. Even without my teacher by my side I knew each step and what came next. As I cleaned the tools and the moment ended, that feeling stayed. Bliss and stillness. The moment developed after my yoga practice, I eagerly practiced again with a different matcha. As I folded my fukusa (silk cloth for “cleansing” dry tools) nearing the end of this round of tea, I wanted more.
It is funny how tea can take us away and leave us wanting more. For me I craved my Japanese Sencha. The moment continued into the evening as I filled my kyuusu, a very small side handled pot, and steeped until there was no more. But there always is more, for another evening.
Where to find Katherine…
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