Matcha originally began as a drink for Zen practitioners during their ascetic training. It was drunk to maintain concentration, nourish the body, and calm the mind during the rigorous ascetic training.
Later, matcha was also consumed by samurai, giving birth to the culture of chanoyu that has continued to the present day. The warriors who risked their lives in battle sought relief from the stress and pressure of battle through the tea ceremony, and even built a hypothetical tea house on the battlefield to drink matcha.
Many businessmen in New York, like the Samurai of the past, may be looking for spiritual healing. Bringing the spirit of chanoyu into the office and drinking matcha tea can help them regain a brief moment of peace of mind.
In this lecture by tea master Yoshitsugu Nagano, participants will learn about the history of chanoyu and the benefits of matcha using slides in the first half of the lecture, and in the second half, they will actually use authentic tea utensils to make and drink matcha together in a practical lecture.
In this lecture by tea master, Yoshitsugu Nagano, a presentation on the history of Chanoyu and the health benefits of Matcha were explained in the first half. In the latter half, using actual tea implements, the guests prepared their own bowl of Matcha and enjoyed drinking it together.
First, Mr. Atsushi Ueda gave a short speech thanking employees for taking time to immerse themselves in Japanese culture and learning more about important traditions. Then Mr. Nagano explained that Matcha, like coffee, also has caffeine but the effects are more gentle and less damaging to the body with additional benefits like relaxation which comes from the chemical, theanine. He also explained that the spirit of Chanoyu is rooted in Zen Buddhism. If one brings that into the office setting and drinks Matcha at work, one can quickly regain spiritual peace. Guests were enthralled by Mr. Nagano’s talk.
In the latter half where guests were able to prepare their own bowl of tea, careful instruction was given starting with proper posture and breathing, how to use the tea scoop and tea whisk and finally the etiquette on how to drink.
Participants commented, “When I was whisking the tea, I could feel myself calm down.” “I think I’m going to change from coffee to Matcha.”