Tea legends — what the ancient Chinese already knew about #mindfulness
There Was once a famous Chinese master named Zhao Zhou. People visited him to seek enlightenment. One day two young wanderers looking for wisdom knocked on Zhou’s door. Master welcomed them into his home and asked them to sit down at a table where an old monk Was already sitting. „Please tell me the meaning of Buddha,” the first wanderer asked. Zhao Zhou replied, „Drink some tea!” The second one asked, „What is truth?” and master’s answer Was again „Drink some tea!” The old monk sitting quietly at the table wondered to himself, „Why Master tells them to drink tea instead of answering their questions?” Zhao Zhou read the monk’s mind and said to him, „You drink tea too!”
This story symbolizes how important is tea for Chinese and Japanese cultures. It is an integral part of both cultures stemming from Buddhist influence. It also tells us quite simply how to achieve a very #instagramatic state of mindfulness. We habitually live in the world of ideas instead of the present. We are constantly planning the future or remembering the past. What Master Zhou teaches by drinking tea is to focus on now — trying to be in the present. This is exactly how Zhou would teach you how to fight off every day’s stress. What better way is there to remain in the moment than to drink tea?
Why Tea is that important to Chinese and Japanese tradition? Both Buddhism and Taoism stress that a life of simplicity brings great peace and harmony. Tea is something very simple and subtle in the Eastern world dominated by strong tastes. Buddhist view on life is to keep it simple. We may desire fame and fancy cars to make life more thrilling, but if we relax into a more simple, boring life, we often find a key to happiness.