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Connecting Through the Ritual of Tea

Tea has an innately ritual quality to it. 

Do yourself a sweet favor. Take a breath, brew a cup of tea brimming with justice, and share the world’s oldest beverage with someone you love, even if it’s only in spirit. 

Below is a simple ritual you can try, and you can find out more about Thistle Farms’ justice teas here.

A Basic Tea Ritual

A basic ritual for serving tea I learned from friends and my family is always have a heated kettle that lives near the burner as a prologue to the visit.

Then you begin the ritual by choosing a tea based on the ambiance you want to create. Make sure its leaves and roots are linked to the kind of justice you want to be a part of. Many people believe a basic black tea is the only only tea to serve. I am by nature and constitution drawn to the lighter green teas. Take a little scalding water from the kettle, pour it into the pot, and swirl it around to clean and heat the teapot. Then dump that water out, fill the teapot with the hot water to the top, and add teat Let the tea steep for 3 to 5 minutes and pour it into the cups. This ritual will prepare and steep the group as well as the tea.

The kettle itself is a signal that there's time to talk. People can slow down and wait as the minutes unfold slowly enough that you can hold them, When the tea is steeped you can start the real conversation; otherwise you have rushed things. The best part of the simple tea ritual to me is the first sip and the anticipation of the temperature and taste. You watch the people you are sharing tea with for judgment or affirmation. If the tea is bitter, it might be a sign. If it’s mellow, that might be one, too. Drink the broth and make conversation with thoughts that can be as mellow or as bitter as the tea before you.

Drink it knowing that the water that courses through your body has been transformed. It is still water, but now it holds the fragrance of earth and people.

It holds healing, and it holds history. Learning to serve tea and participate in the ritual of tea drinking is a fundamental part of the way of tea.

It opens the gifts of tea's ability to connect and restore us.

Adapted from The Way of Tea & Justice

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