WATCH: Japan House tea ceremony

By Connor Kennedy

Japan House holds a monthly traditional Tea Ceremony. The Japan House is tucked away by the Vet-Med building and Arboretum southeast of campus. It is a cultural center that while is affiliated with the university, attracts many residents of the CU community. Here people from on and off campus gather to celebrate and take part in the ancient tradition and Japanese culture. Led by tea student, volunteer, and ceremony organizer Marc-Anthony Macon, students and Urbana-Champaign natives use the peaceful time to not only drink the tea made, but enjoy each other’s company and reflect on life. The ceremony places emphasis on serving others before one’s self and finding the joy and tranquility in the minute-to-minute moments in life.

After the ceremony, the students are lead on a small tour of the building, complete with smaller, more traditional tea rooms, and then are free to walk the paths through the gardens outside.

“One of the philosophies of the tea ceremony is…’one meeting, one chance’ or ‘one life, one opportunity’… we only have now, and so it’s incumbent on us to make now as kind and beautiful and human as we can,” said Macon, “and tea is a great way to practice doing that.”