Steeped In Tradition: Looking Into The Japanese Tea Ceremony
Updated : August 06, 2021 09:08 IST
From the dress code to the preparation of tea itself, we are tracing the tradition of the Japanese tea ceremony.
The Japanese tea ceremony is a ceremonial way of preparing and drinking green tea typically in a traditional tearoom with a tatami floor. The reason behind the tea ceremony is one serving and enjoying tea but mainly for the guests to enjoy the hospitality of the host in an atmosphere distinct from the fast pace of everyday life. Historically, tea has been around since the eighth century, and the tea ceremony started as a way for the rich members of the society to display their intricate knowledge of tea.
The ceremony to this day follows some important procedures. Read on to know about them.
The dress code requires individuals to wear modest clothes and fashion strong smells to take away from the tea fragrance.
To set up a tranquil environment, the tearoom is surrounded by a garden, though most modern tearooms lack a garden. The gardens, however, aren’t full of flowers because they would distract from the tea experience.
The tearoom is traditionally set up on the tatami floor, the entrance to the room is kept low so that entering guests have to bend over, symbolizing humility. The guests also bow once they take a seat in the room.
The host is the one who prepares the tea. The main equipment includes a tea whisk (chasen), tea container for the powdered green tea (natsume), tea scoop (chashaku), tea bowl, sweets container or plate, and the kettle and brazier, all of which have special use and meaning.
Drinking The Tea
A Japanese sweet is served before the prepared tea. Once the sweet is enjoyed, the bowl is placed in front of you on the tatami floor. The tea has to be sipped according to specific rules.
If you are ever visiting Japan, you can enjoy the setting of this traditional ceremony across the country.