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The Coffee Ceremony and Zen Practice


Connecting continents and cultures. Bringing together spirituality, tranquillity, love and respect.

Although coffee has become synonymous with legal stimulants that help us cope with the rapid pace of modernity, in some cultures, the coffee ceremony is to this day performed as a ritual act of welcoming the guests.

The Urban Nun ZENDO conducts the coffee ceremony as an awareness practice that follows the principles of mutual gratitude and respect between guests and host. The ceremony, which may be of short or long duration, is offered only to invited guests.

Modern culture cultivates less and less respectful behaviour, and when respect is expressed, it is usually associated with prosperity, success or popularity. Everything that is not spectacular or significant enough remains unnoticed, thereby the meaning of the small and ordinary disappears, and the threshold of gratitude rises.

The coffee ceremony usesthe ordinary (modern coffee culture) with extraordinary (ceremony) as a practice to restore thevalue of the insignifican, the ordinary and the small andto regain feelings of gratitude and respect in daily life.

The guests would initially tend to accept an invitation to the coffee ceremony as a non-binding get-together. They may come too late, cancel at the last minute, or just not show up. Even the host can fall into a trap of perfectionism, what would lead to frustration if even the smallest detail gets out of control. All this can not only ruin the purpose of hosting – gratitude of giving and receiving - but can also destroy inner peace and damage relationships.

The aim of the coffee ceremony is to wash away the boundary between guests and host, between me and others. This can not be achieved through trivial conversations that are usually considered conducted in the coffee shops.

Idle speech has no place in the ceremony. Instead, there is tacit recognition and respect for the mutual act of kindness: the utmost respect of the hosts by offering the most precious she possesses - time and full presence, which is no less that life itself; and the unconditional respect of the guests by accepting the invitation and being fully attentive to the coffee preparation and serving.

Ceremony is more than a set of defined steps that are performed automatically. It is a total immersion in the present and a complete awareness of everything to which the sensory organs, every cell, and every fiber in the body exposes us. The ceremony teaches how to integrate the spiritual aspects into ordinary affairs, and how to develop gratitude for even the simplest things. Paradoxically, one learns to use coffee for internal slowdown instead of speeding up. When performed with complete awareness, all interpersonal and intrapersonal boundaries are dissolved, transforming ordinary into extraordinary.

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Email: urban.zen.nun@gmail.com

HINOTORI

The Urban Nun Zendo

8006 Zürich

Switzerland

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