Tea as we refer to it now has undergone many transformations from the original tea plant, an evergreen shrub grown in East Asia and China where its buds and leaves were used to make this brew.
Tea has spread to be grown in many other countries and now encompasses a variety of plants that can be added to boiled water and/or ‘milk’ and presented as ‘tea’. From astringent almost bitter tastes we can now be greeted with floral aromas and light scented tastes. There are those teas which are naturally caffeinated and those mixed with spices that offer a relaxing sojourn.
Our ancestors would have boiled water with roots, leaves and other parts of the plant to produce a medicinal tincture or a warming nutritious nourishing brew. Tea, broth, soup can be interchangeable when referring to the ingredients used.
The Shaman performed ceremony and ritual when preparing, mixing, combining and finally ingesting or providing to be ingested the medicinal properties provided in the ‘tea’ drink.
Ceremony and tea go hand in hand. Throughout the ages in many cultures the Tea Ceremony has played an important role. It is the respect for the brew and the qualities within the tea that manifest magical healing properties. It is also, in many cultures, a time for coming together and partaking of this drink in thoughtful celebration and ritual.
Plants have healing properties and certain plants when brewed together offer a powerful potion.
If water is the nectar of the gods then tea must be the gods true essence. A gift provided to mankind to offer up for ceremony, ritual and gratitude.
For centuries drinking tea has been part of ceremony and ritual. Drinking tea for pleasure and for ingesting plant medicine. Whether cooled or taken as a warm drink. Tea is referenced as a tincture or potion.
The leaves, roots and flowers combined with water, milk, honey, citrus, alcohol, oil or other combinations are a conduit for the essential active ingredients within the plant to be stimulated and awakened.
The ceremony of the tea is just as important as the ingredients and components of the tea being prepared.
Freshly picked or dried tea leaves, flowers, roots offer an intense flavour. The energy is concentrated and potent. Fresh plants maintain a special power, and affect the body and mind directly. They contain strong focussed healing power.
Connect with the spirit of the plant the evening before you are to pick its leaves or bud and ask permission to take some of its leaves or bud for tea the next day.
Listen to the plant you will be guided which part to take.
The next morning at sunrise whilst speaking in your light language and connecting with the plant spirit ask the plant again if it is still okay to go ahead with taking some of its leaves or bud. Listen ..
If the permission is given using scissors (secateurs) cut the leaves. Do not pull or pick the leaves off. Cut only the mature leaves and as many as you will be using for the tea. Depending on the plant or potency sometimes you need take only one flower bud in the case of Bergamot.
Give thanks to the plant spirit for allowing you to partake of its nectar (fruit), spiritual energy and become one with it.
Be respectful when collecting the leaves or bud. Be present.
This plant is now part of your Plant Totem.
You can journey with the plant when consuming the tea or by connecting to it in the garden.
Place freshly picked parts of plant to be used for tea in a brass, glass or clay vessel.
Pour boiled water directly onto plant in vessel.
Now cover and allow to sit for 10 minutes. During this time give thanks to the elements and all in nature that assisted in the growth of this plant.
When ready to drink turn the handle slowly to each of the four directions giving thanks and offering gratitude for what you are going to partake.
Think on the energy you are consuming. From the sun (our father), the earth (our mother), lunar (grandmother). The elements of water, air, ether/space. The energy from the four directions and the wind. Other beings that pollinated the flowers so the plant could grow and flourish ..
Pour tea straight into a brass, glass or clay vessel from a height creating a flow of energy and incorporating the element ‘air’ and ‘space (ether)’.
Sit in nature connecting to all around you, giving thanks and enjoying the tea.