Learning from Tea Ceremony Dialogues! The Value of Communication

In the tea ceremony, dialogues take place during the gathering. These dialogues are not merely to confirm etiquette but also serve as an important time to reaffirm one’s mindset towards tea and share the worldview of the tea ceremony. Let’s consider what we can learn from tea ceremony dialogues.

Discussing the surroundings (tea utensils, etc.) to convey the background of why things are done a certain way

First and foremost in the dialogue is discussing the surrounding situation in the tea room.

For example, the host introduces the types and characteristics of tea bowls and tea scoops used in the ceremony, as well as the meaning of hanging scrolls. This allows sharing the background of why these items are used or placed in a certain way. Each tea utensil embodies the spirit of its creator. Through dialogue, one can connect with this spirituality.

Respect and gratitude for those who made the tea utensils and hanging scrolls

The dialogue also provides an opportunity to renew expressions of respect and gratitude towards those who created the tea utensils. Using a tea bowl or tea scoop while reflecting on the skill and feelings of its maker is part of the tea ceremony’s etiquette. Through dialogue, participants can reaffirm these sentiments with each other.

Reconfirming mutual understanding through dialogue

By engaging in dialogue, the host and guests can gain common perspectives and reconfirm their understanding. Listening to others’ thoughts and re-examining one’s own perceptions deepens the understanding of tea.

Learning how to communicate effectively so that others understand

In the dialogue, communication takes place through the act of conveying information to one another. Speaking slowly and clearly, while being considerate of the other person’s position, is practiced. This is an essential skill for smooth communication with others.

There is much to learn from tea ceremony dialogues. Recognizing the deeper meaning of things by understanding their background and maintaining a sense of gratitude; the importance of communicating from the other person’s perspective. These are not only relevant to the tea ceremony but are also mindsets for living a better life.

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