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02 July 2006 @ 11:03 am
Intro's  
Seems like quite a few people have become active on this forum in the past few months. Many of you I know and exchange with off the forum, but others I know very little about. I find that when I am discussing tea, it helps me to know a little about the other participants. Especially the extent of your experience with tea, background, other interests, etc. I'll start with a quick bio of myself.

Bearsx3, if this thread is successful, could you create a frontpage link to it for easy access?
 
 
 
hobbesoxon on July 3rd, 2006 09:06 am (UTC)
Great thread - thanks!

I'm a 29 year old into A.I. at Oxford University in the UK. I've been drinking Indian and Ceylon teas for a long time, but have only really explored the wonderous world of Chinese teas since meeting my wife (a Chinese national) two years ago.

I'm definitely no expert, but have spent a good month or so digging around in south-west China, and in Beijing, talking (through my wife!) to various owners of tea-houses, and drinking a lot of their tea.

Since leaving school ten years ago, I have been immersed in Chinese philosophy and culture (Daoism, Taiji, Zen/Chan Buddhism, &c.), and have found that the gongfu style of taking tea matches this very well. Or maybe they are all inevitable given a certain kind of spirit. I think that everyone that reads this LiveJournal must have that already. :)

Has anyone ever read "The Importance of Living", by Lin Yutang? There's a great chapter on tea drinking, written by perhaps one of the last of Mainland China's traditional scholars.
psychopuncture on July 3rd, 2006 02:59 pm (UTC)
Has anyone ever read "The Importance of Living", by Lin Yutang? There's a great chapter on tea drinking, written by perhaps one of the last of Mainland China's traditional scholars.

read it many years ago. thanks for the reminder--i'll have to go back to it for another visit.

[ugh, still can't believe i'm old enough to be able to say "many years ago." jeez, i graduated from high school the year <lj user="bearsbearsbears"] was born...]
psychopuncture on July 3rd, 2006 03:01 pm (UTC)
but the way, in what style of taiji are you training?
hobbesoxon on July 3rd, 2006 03:30 pm (UTC)
What a great book that is. The entire work is very much "in the spirit of tea drinking", of course, and Lin has a gentle, almost naturally Taoist humour that is very appealing to me. I definitely only drink tea "when the concubines are slender" - how about you? :)

As for taiji, I've been working on my Yang-style since starting my undergrad degree which must be (argh!) twelve years now. Now I feel old, too. The style I do is Chen Man Ching's version (Zhen Manjing), which is, as I'm sure you know, one of the most popular in the West, given his penetration into the US consciousness. I'm also working on my sword form, but that's straight Yang-style.

Alongside the taiji, I make the most of that frame of mind to do some qigong beforehand. I'm sure you're familiar with its benefits yourself, but they are particularly useful in preparing the spirit for taiji.

This could turn into a very long thread, so don't get me onto meditative subjects. :)
psychopuncture on July 3rd, 2006 03:56 pm (UTC)
slender, but not too slender. :)

it might be nice to start a whole new thread on the philosophical-spiritual aspects of tea and other practices!

i'd love to chat further about taiji and related areas; however, so as not to derail this thread, feel free to email me at psychopuncture at earthlink dot net.

mike