We have all been learning of the optimal way to brew the perfect cup of tea. But if sharing a pot of tea with friends or family and expanding the potential to add some entertaining ritual is on your agenda consider tossing out your strainers. Find that old teapot which doesn’t have porcelain perforations to obstruct the loose leaves and just relax and let some of those tea leaves find their way into your cup.

With my apologies in advance to anyone who takes the art of reading tea leaves as a serious paranormal endeavor, I highly recommend the delightful experience I had recently when family, ages 8 to 82, were encouraged to drink all but the last few drops of their tea in order to participate in an after-dinner reading. When everyone had finished, we were instructed to swirl the large green tea leaves in those few remaining drops, then flip over the cup onto our saucer and rotate the cup in a clockwise direction (counter-clockwise if you’re in Australia, I suppose) three times and then set it down again right side up.

But rather than passing the cups to a future-channeling mystic, we were each encouraged to examine the pattern of the leaves, and slowly rotate the cup in order to see anything and everything there was to see. Clearly a game that would have delighted Hermann Rorschach (and perhaps T Ching’s founders, too?!?), it was then time to share our observations and, if possible, weave them into a suitable future forecast. After everyone had made their assessments, each person was required to share their personal reading with the others, one at a time. The cup was then passed around to see if anyone could offer additional interpretations.

I highly recommend you try this at home. If smiles and laughter do not naturally ensue, it may be time to seek Dr. R or his followers for private or group sessions. You’ll find reading loose leaf tea is a more stable medium than reading the clouds and infinitely more satisfying and entertaining than reading a fortune cookie unless you are looking for lottery numbers. What a simple way to create some fun with family or friends and perhaps some magical appeal to the ritual of drinking tea!