One day a visitor asked Sen no Rikyu to explain the secret of performing the Japanese tea ceremony. Rikyu answered: “In summer suggest coolness, in winter a feeling of warmth. Lay the charcoal so that it heats the water, and make a pleasing bowl of tea. That is all.” The guest was disappointed, however, and complained, “But everyone knows that.” Rikyu only replied, “Serve tea in this way and perhaps I will become your student.”

Taken from Seeds of a Birch Tree by Clark Strand



Published by Gavin Whyte

I am the author of the modern-day fables The Girl with the Green-Tinted Hair, and Happiness & Honey, plus several other works of fiction.

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