As we steep and pour this first cup, welcoming you all to the Global Tea Hut, let us introduce ourselves and get comfortable. It will take a minute for the kettle to boil, anyway...
The tea hut is out in the forest for two reasons: solace and guidance. We travel up the winding path to the hermit's hut to share some tea, finding a bit of quiet in a turbid world, solace from the storm and peace in that space. We also, sometimes, go for wisdom and direction, cultivated in that loving-silence. Beyond quiet or wise words, however, a tea space has a magic way of transforming people; and it's more than just some time by themselves or the words of power the master speaks. A true ceremony of Cha Dao brings about change in people. And it is our goal to facilitate such transformation, and to afford you the tools you need to map out and ultimately build your own hermit's hut, right in the center of your mountain-chest, forested heart.
Your energy will help manifest our dreams physically: of building a mountain retreat center all tea lovers can call home, a place of meditation and solace, as well as community and service; a place to come to be transformed, and more importantly to learn the tools you will need to make that transformation lasting by taking it home with you.
It is very important that we treat this giving of money and mailing of tea as a gift exchange. If you feel like you are purchasing tea, you may feel entitled or disappointed with the tea or amount. If we exchange gifts, however, we both find joy in the process, and grow closer to each other: you in giving charity and us in sharing some of the spirit of our center.
The tea is almost ready, so let's slip into a love for the silence that surrounds tea. Before we do, please keep in mind that in drinking this tea you are entering a giant, global hut of tea brothers and sisters. Raise your bowl to them. As we all drink this wonderful elixir, may the barriers of time and space break, and may we find ourselves seated next to all our fellow tea-wayfarers, past and present: from the great mystics that cloudwalked ancient China to the Zen masters of Japan, from the great Gong Fu masters to all the wonderful tea people alive now, who from Russia to LA are sharing this same tea with us all.
May you have a thousand, thousand bowls - Each one the Morning Dew