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Thursday, December 6, 2007

Staying Awake

The history of tea is literally steeped in legend. No one really knows if all of what you're about to read is really true, but the story is definitely entertaining — so read on.

An alternative legend claims that an Indian prince named Bodhidharma who converted to Buddhism in the sixth century, he was the one responsible for discovering tea in the 6th century. He had left India to go North preaching Buddhism along the way, when visiting China to spread Buddhism, he vowed never to sleep during his seven year meditation. At the end of five years he was overcome with lassitude and drowsiness, but a providential chance made him pick and chew some leaves of an unidentified tree which acted as a stimulant, helping him stay awake.

There is a grisly variation to this myth that comes from Japan. The Japanese version claims that Bodhidharma was so frustrated with his efforts to stay awake that he literally ripped off his eyelids and threw them to the ground. It was there, according to legend, that the first tea plant grew, providing Bodhidharma with the leaves with which to make an elixir that kept him awake and refreshed, for the remaining years of his mission.

References::
history of tea

Tea palace
Serena tea

tea in the beginnings

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