Tea: fast facts
– Tea has been used as medicine for thousands of years
– If your tea is not organic or known to be from a wild and clean source it is almost guaranteed to have been grown in fertilisers and pesticides – this is bad for you and your environment
– Organic tea is a base level option tea (never non-organic) and if you can find wild, living tea choose that
– Tea is more than just a warm beverage, unless it’s just a warm beverage
– All tea comes from one tree, Camellia Sinensis (*)
– Sitting in silence drinking tea for a few moments each morning is a kind of meditation that can calm and direct your mind before you take on the day
– Tea for many is a meditation and way of calming, healing and feeling the inherent connection we have with this planet (unless it’s non-organic tea then it’s just hypocrisy. More on that in this blog post 😉
– British tea is not black tea in China, it’s red tea
When I ‘officially’ started out on the Rich Eats world travel extravaganza I was more focused on fat burning and vanity than holistic health and wellbeing. Well, tea was a HUGE part of this shift. In this article we are going to find out how tea is so much more than a dried and ground up leaf in a cup of hot water…
Tea is medicine (living tea that is…)
As well as the innate physical healing properties of tea, the X factor comes when we stop and think about what it stands for. Taking a moment out of the day to shut up, sit, think through the leaf to the mountain, to the sun energy growing the 500, 1000 even 2000+ year old tree, and how that tree is nourished by some of the cleanest water on the planet; it breathes the purest air and is a living part of a mountain ecology. As you sit and think about how one tree gives its leaves once per year and one family go to the tree to retrieve its gifts and guide them through this journey before being ready for your bowl (or cup), there is no deadline, no bill, or car that needs fixing… stress disappears and the feeling of peace and connection re-emerges. That is healing.
The tea ceremony – shhhhh…
When I arrived in LA I’d already had a taste of the real deal… teas from wild trees that is. t was at a tea bar in London where she first ‘spoke’ to me; unfortunately that great place no longer exists. (More about ‘talking tea’ here.)
With this knowledge of a tea world outside chemically grown bagged powders, there was no turning back, and like experiencing world travel outside the packaged holiday resort, that all inclusive convenience will never taste or feel the same. Back to LA, I found the tea world in Venice Beach, invited in.
The tea ceremony is about feeling the ever present connection with each other and nature, it is about drinking a healing medicine, allowing the qi energy to work its magic through your body and soul, letting go of judgement, the material man-made world disappears, financial status disintegrates into that which it is – just a number, in the ceremony we acknowledge and feel each other as equal living beings.
There is silence, sometimes hours (it’s a rarity in this day and age to sit with another person in silence and just feel), sometimes people cry from the emotions that are released (maybe that’s the tea working its magic), we engage in conversation (sometimes about tea, or whatever comes up), and as a wise Chinese Emperor once never said: it’s a moment to shut up and be.
Thinking bigger, choosing organic (foods as well as tea) is not about saving the planet but about preserving our place on this blue and green rock.
A nice interview with tea master Wu De… Watch it to find out more about this beautiful leaf!:
I want to give a big shout out to my amigo Colin who travels to Taiwan to meet the families and farmers who look after the living trees trees and process the leaves. He has an amazing company Living Tea and is my first port of call for everything tea!! Legend!! Thanks mate!