Chado: The Way of Tea exhibit (Photo by Stephen Morrell)

Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut is presently internet hosting an exhibit referred to as Chado: The Way of Tea by means of Nov. 30 in its College of East Asian Studies Gallery. The exhibit’s focus is on tea’s origins, the medieval interval in China, Japan and Korea and the way tea’s function advanced in East Asian society.

“What most people take away from the exhibit is how remarkable the results of this plant are,” mentioned Exhibit Curator Stephen Morrell. “It explores tea’s impact on cultures.”

The exhibit exhibits how Camellia sinensis was found by Chinese emperor Shennong in 2737 BCE in southeast China and initially used as a medicinal plant; and the way its use later unfold north and west.

Tea’s reputation picked up momentum as Buddhism grew to become established in China. It grew to become used as a beverage and a wholesome various to alcohol. Morrell spoke of how tea enhances Buddhist practices, “Buddhism cultivates presence of mind—your ability to live in this moment. This ritual of making and serving tea became an extension of the practice.” Cha Dao means “the way of tea,” and pertains to tea as an extension of religious observe.

Morrell went on to say that the publication of the primary identified publication about tea, Cha Ching, created by Lu Yu in 760 CE, additional bolstered consciousness about tea. The textual content coated preparation strategies, totally different utensils, the place tea was grown, the significance of water high quality, and many others. “That really caught the attention of the imperial family, and from that point on, tea really took off and became a very significant commodity,” Morrell mentioned of the Tang dynasty (618-906) by means of the Song dynasty (960-1127).

Chado: The Way of Tea exhibit (Photo by Stephen Morrell)

The exhibit additionally covers how tea unfold to Japan, initially to the aristocracy and warrior class. Then with the publication of KissaYōjōki (Drinking Tea for Health) by Japanese Buddhist monk Myoan Eisai in 1214, tea ingesting unfold to the lots.

Several artifacts utilized in historical tea preparation have been loaned to the college for the exhibit, corresponding to tea pots, tea caddies, tea scoops and traditional Chinese, Japanese and Korean bowls, water vessels, bamboo ware, incense containers and extra. There are additionally pictures overlaying tea plantations and various kinds of tea processing.

Tea samples are supplied at the exhibit’s applications, the following of which is Sung Poetry and Tea with Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies Ao Wang and Curator Stephen Morrell, Tuesday, Nov. 6 at 4:30 p.m.

Morrell plans to curate further tea associated reveals at Wesleyan University sooner or later.

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