Whether you have a long sacred relationship with “the leaf” or are an experienced drinker with a propensity for minimum-25-year-aged sheng puerh, the very fact that you care that much reflects greatly upon modern society.
Being a quiet observer, I’ve noticed that just about everyone around my age range of 18-35 communicates differently than our immediate elders. I grew up in Beverly Hills and experienced the shift from pagers to cell phones just within my years at Beverly Hills High. Today, laptops, smartphones, and tablets abound. It’s now getting more and more difficult to remember what life was like without them. The presence of my iPhone has drastically altered how I connect to the world and how I communicate with it. As a sensitive individual, I am blessed with being self-aware (most of the time) and will consciously keep my time with my devices limited to appropriate environments. I try to be brief, as I don’t want to miss out on being present at any given moment. So when I’m out and about in public and am not temporarily engaged with my phone, I notice how many people are on their phones and especially in the presence of others. People on dates, friends out for a meal, even families all seemingly glued to their devices and plugged into alternate realms of communication and information.
The multi-faceted culture of tea undeniably brings people closer together. My introverted nature begins to bloom externally when preparing tea for others, especially perfect strangers. The wisdom I receive from Cha Dao and being with tea while relating to others is tremendously special to me. I encourage the self-discovery of any tea culture for that matter.
So to those who plug away at their devices and might be starving for actual experience and communication, try preparing tea, look into a tea ceremony, or develop a practice of your own. The benefits are innumerable.
Contributor Adam Yasmin has permission to use the photo in this post by Luna 13.