Four Steps to Enlightenment
The ancestors tell us there are four steps to enlightenment.
Purity because we must purify ourselves and our tools.
Tranquillity to ensure we have achieved peace and to centre our energy.
Harmony with our surroundings, with nature and the universe.
Respect for both parties, the yin and yang, the guest and the host.
The intricate, meticulous, art of hours. Time is still. A foreign country to the statued dancers.
Concentration induces trance, channelling auspicious prosperity and luck.
Only the finest tools, cleansed in purest silks, often handed down by generations, years past.
Some say the antique heightens the experience, that the tools hold the magic, lift the mortal to the immortal. Man to the Gods.
The finest ingredients, harvested by the moon.
A bamboo brush whisks powder, to frothy stew.
Matcha the bubbled elixir of the gods.
The sugared delicacies to offset the bitter.
A bow to the bowl, deep and low, before lifting to consider.
Two turns, clockwise, with poise and attention.
Finally the drink, long and slow, to appreciate the tea.
The task to describe something as if a foreigner seeing for the first time, in terms which make the purpose unclear until the very last sentence.