Why is Tea Used in Ceremonies?
Why is green tea used in ceremonies? Back in the day, a Chinese ruler once found that a green leaf had fallen into his cup of water. After this happened, the leaf had infused itself into the water, causing it to turn green from the chlorophyll of the leaf.
After this happened, the Chinese ruler became obsessed with the idea of green tea. The funny thing is, he was actually ahead of his time! While the idea of green tea first originated in China, the leaves used to make green tea were eventually exported to Japan, where green tea has become a staple of life for its residents.
There are many different grades of matcha tea, ranging from cooking grade all the way up to ceremonial tea.
What is a tea ceremony?
A tea ceremony, or Way of Tea, is simply a place of gathering for people in Japan during which special events are recognized and celebrated. Unlike the US, the Japanese culture celebrates special moments differently. Ever since green tea became popularized in China, the drink has become sacred for the people of Japan. Tea ceremonies can happen for any reason these days, but they used to be reserved for special events, such as reaching a special milestone or accomplishment.
There are millions of drinks out there, so do these celebrations involve green tea? The answer can be traced back to the roots of when green tea first arrived in the country. It was considered to be very special to the Chinese so, when it first arrived in Japan, it was treated in very much the same way.
Green tea comes in many shapes and sizes, so if you plan to hold a ceremony similar to the way it goes down in Japan, read closely. Japanese green tea ceremonies require a certain spec of green tea -- matcha. Matcha green tea is similar to traditional green tea, except for one slight difference.
While regular green tea is made by infusing a whole green tea leaf, matcha green tea is made by grinding up that same green tea leaf and whisking it in a bowl of water. The taste of matcha green tea is much stronger (and the drink is more fragrant as a result). But matcha green tea also has health benefits over regular green tea. Each sip of matcha comes packed with more nutrients and energy.
A big part of the matcha lifestyle has to do with gaining energy - - and there is a ton of it in matcha. Matcha contains a lot of caffeine which means that, after a moment of celebration, everybody who participated will feel both relaxed and renewed. Of the many grades of matcha powder, Japanese celebrations utilize the “ceremonial” grade of matcha.
Those who are fortunate enough to participate in Japanese ceremonies are gathering around a special moment, so it makes sense that they would drink a beverage that encompasses everything that is special. Ceremonial matcha powder can only be grown in a limited number of places, and it is of the highest quality. Anything less wouldn’t hold up to the ceremonial standard.
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