The Same, but Different- Tea Culture in Taiwan and China
History of tea
Tea drinking has become diverse and widely accepted for its health benefits. The origin of this product is said to be in China where its use was discovered accidentally. Tea in Taiwan grew wild in the Mountain regions of the Red Sprout and Taiwan mountains and is largely made up of oolong, green and black tea. Cultivation of these trees started from around 1796 to1820 when they were transplanted tree seeds from China’s Fujian Province and grown in Taiwan on the northern mountainous regions in Taiwan because the climate and soil was favorable for tea growth and production.
Tea in China was discovered by an emperor who lived 5000 years …show more content…
These tea ceremonies are usually carried out in tea houses with those who are involved with the ceremony are either in a sitting or kneeling position. These ceremonies are used to create an act of cohesion, humility, discipline, calmness, and enlightenment. The Chinese ritual involves the use of a special teapot, tea pitcher, brewing tray, towel, spoon, cups, and strainer. Spiritual ceremonies call for a person to shed all his worldliness and become a clear vessel. The ambiance of the ceremony should be calm and serene. In both ceremonies there is a lot of attention to detail like the temperature of the cups, how much each cup is filled, which should be equal, to the quality of the tea. The ritual in both countries calls for six procedures of preparation, brewing, serving, getting the aroma of the teas, ending of the ceremony, and cleaning of the tools and workspace used. After this has been done, the ceremony can be deemed as complete.
Tea ceremonies like the Chinese four seasons ceremony are used to commune with nature by having four participants to represent the four seasons. Another common ceremony is the wedding tea ceremony held on the wedding day. This ceremony has a particular order in which tea should be served honoring each member differently. The bride and groom both kneel in front of guests when serving as a form of pious expression. (Chow, Boey …show more content…
People who are of a lower economic status are supposed to pour tea for those who are seen as influential in society. In the same way, younger members of the society are supposed to serve the elder members. Tea is used as a way to bond a family by using these ceremonies to schedule family meetings in teahouses. It is also used as a way of expressing an apology in case of wrongdoing, tea ceremonies are used as a way of apologizing. In weddings, sweet tea is used to represent the sweetness of the bride. To show respect there is an order to which the tea is served during weddings, starting with the parents to show gratitude. (Dawn, 1995)
In low-income areas where tea is scarce, the ceremonial aspect of the tea ceremony is still celebrated but with the serving of ‘white tea’ which signifies a lack of the necessary ingredients but the willingness to commune with guests.
Oolong tea has many health benefits and is sought after worldwide for its effectiveness at prevention of diseases like cancer, diseases associated with cholesterol, and diseases related to the digestive system. This has greatly affected the community since people living in Asia are known for their virility and