Sunday, February 14, 2010

Fiat lux


Ceaseless flows the river, water ever changing; bubbles in still pool gather and subside, impermanent: so in this world are we and all we devise.

–Kamo no Chōmei, Hōjōki

A couple of sunspot cycles ago, a soi-disant Zen teacher warned an old novice against high expectations when offering ego repatterning to help people withdraw from tobacco. His thesis: smoking encompasses a broad range of linked cognitive processes, internal states and overt behaviors, each providing some kind of satisfaction, relief or distraction, and all working to maintain the status quo. Unraveling the skein of social interaction, personal ritual and biochemical dependency therefore requires a superbly concerted effort. This assertion was delivered, somewhat ironically, within the pale of “Mad Russian” Yefim Shubentsov, who for decades has claimed to cure 80% of incoming smokers with one deft wave of a bioenergetic placebo.

While none tasteful enough to be reading this tastiest of blogs could ever be tagged an addict of any sort, it is true that for most of us, it is no single aspect of the tea experience, but a veritable congeries, that drives our ongoing engagement. Consider, for example, a few elements:
  • Learn: read, watch videos, attend workshops, sit with veterans
  • Buy: in shops, on-line, via telephone and post
  • Covet: un/pack, inspect, admire; look, sniff, handle
  • Exchange: share, trade, re-sell, swap samples
  • Criticize: write and speak, assess and review
–and infusing all of these, we hope: Drink! Alone in placid contemplation, convivially as a common focus, tangentially as a quenching and revivifying beverage, integratively as a complement to food, tactically as a stimulant, ritually as a foundation for or embodiment of some broader binding practice.

To hold a delicate creature too closely is to risk choking it, and to reify one transient experience is to constrain the space in which the next will appear. A great part of any mindful exercise of sensuality must therefore be what the Japanese recently call mono no aware, the bittersweet (like a good gyokuro) poignancy of the transient suchness of things. It is a benign expression of wabi-sabi, the gentle communion with transiency itself: the anicca of Gautama; panta rhei attributed to Heraclitus; tides of Tao that do nothing, but through which all things are done. Love each sip and let it go. This is one reason that so many of us, when the illusion of time permits, enjoy gongfu brewing: ten, twenty, even thirty thimbled aliquots of liquor taken in evolving, modulated yet never “controlled” succession from one broad pinch of admired leaf. Taste memory, unpacking the various synæsthesias and comparing this tongue-lave with the last, and the one before that, and many more previous—that is part of the maven’s pleasure. But even without the neurological renormalization that evicts unvarying stimuli into limbo, the limits of our attention make clutching at any one moment’s sensation futile. Better to accept Ovid’s dictum: omnia mutantur, nihil interit: everything changes; nothing is lost. Experiences we cannot remember, even in dream, retain the power forever to alter, amplify and enrich the experiences that follow. So let it be with this morning’s cuppa.

With taste and aroma evanescent, circumstance and company variably fugacious, and the mystic leaf itself a living thing whose maturation and senescence may encompass from weeks to a few score years at dry-stored best, where do we find our concrete exemplars, our durable symbols, the persistent artifacts of our chosen pleasure? Fortunately, perhaps, there requires but a minimal equipage for the heating of water, moistening of leaf and delivery of effusions. So little is enough, to warm a Dalesman’s pre-dawn fingers, lubricate a conclave of Odessan elders or Nyhavn knitters, take each of us—in mind, at least—to reclusion or refuge in our own ten-foot square hut. (Though Thoreau, in his splendid renunciation, apparently found no room for our leaf in his life: “...I did not use tea, nor coffee, nor butter, nor milk, nor fresh meat, and so did not have to work to get them...”) It is only the conspicuously wealthy, the bored and sated, those requiring expressions of formality to construe meaning in lives set too remote from Nature, who require more. But we are not a species that limits choice according to requirement, so...

With desiderata well in hand, we may wish more carefully or elegantly to store our leafy or lumpy taels, temper water, measure and manipulate the various substances at their various stages. Most often we provide drinking cups, rather than sucking from a common spout (or aiming streams throatward as camel-riders might pass a skin of koumiss), which in turn invites the fair-pot. And then a splashable tray or “tea ocean” on which to perform all these operations, and whisks, picks, funnels, spoons, scoops and other small tools, and perhaps dishes on which to display fresh and spent leaves. Und so weiter, right up to digital thermometers and scales and timers. As though the wings of savory camellia could be pinned to objective time! People of a collecting temperament will have favorite objects, favorite classes of objects, favorite materials, styles, countries of origin; and otherwise establish personal taxonomies of acquisitiveness. And in contrast to the plainsong European aesthetic, aficionados of the Asian schools are free to harmonize gear according to any modality, or none at all. At a certain state of tea-drunkenness, every object looks good; and even before that, the manifest exercise of discrimination and pleasure affords any soul’s accretion of gear its own special numen. My own favorite pieces, modest though they be, span five cultures, four countries and three centuries, and have little in common past a high silica content.

Yet while proclivities vary, as do budgets, access to suppliers, storage and display space, tolerance of cohabitors, threats from light-fingered adults and rambunctious pets or children, most “tea freaks” tend to focus their collecting on the core unit operation—brewing—and therefore acquire a multiplicity of pots and cups even when they have few or none of the many other optional items. In some cases, collecting is itself the main passion, to which the making and serving of potions is mere justification or occasional distraction. For techies, the search for that perfect pot (perhaps one for each type of tea, time of day, class of company, style of service, etc.) is both drive and excuse. For crafts appreciators, the elegance of shape and construction, melding of material to form and function, may incite a desire for great diversity, or conversely to subtler variations around a chosen sameness. (Someone in my past collected Art Deco photographic light meters. Go figure.) Utility, sensuality, investment... For whatever reason, ownership of teapots may quickly become a self-reinforcing cycle.

Though raised on free-leaf tea, with recent decades' reading and travel somewhat expanding scope of knowledge and appreciation, I have safely evaded that unseemly obsession. A recent inventory of my shelves showed just 46 teapots, of which a good quarter are mainly retained for the memories they decant, unusual form, specialist applicability or to complement other displayed items. To be sure, this does not count a smaller number of in-use gaiwans, plus a score or two of both kept on hand as gifts for neophytes who have yet to develop their own preferences. (I would no sooner give a pot or gaiwan unasked to a serious tea-drinker than I would an unsolicited reed to a saxophonist. On one hand, I would not presume to be able to guess another’s tastes, and would not want to put either of us in an awkward position; on the other, I cannot afford teaware of a quality that would constitute a meaningful addition to most of my friends’ collections. But that first Yixing pot or glazed gaiwan is almost always welcome.) Yet even with so sparse a collection, one may eventually find a piece to be surplus to my needs (and even wants). In this case, I usually give the spare to a friend. Like a piano or a sense of humor, a cared-for teapot improves with use. So there is collective benefit in acquiring many pots and keeping few.

Occasionally, though, a pot is not fit to be either used or donated. One such came my way during an expedition to San Francisco’s Chinatown incident to a nearby photonics conference. Not much attractive teaware to be found there at all, and tea of notable quality pretty sparse as well. So it is with our degraded Disneys; real people and the real tea they drink tend not to feature on the tourist maps. But my Geiger counter did perk up in a basement-level knicknack shop, where sat a bad implementation of a bad rendering of one of the most delicious pots I have ever had the pleasure to see, handle and use, at The Tea Gallery in NYC. (Alas, the proprietors of the latter establishment would not sell at any price.) The imitation: rudely trimmed after clumsy slip-casting, with an ill-fit lid and spout too narrow for our lightning steeps, I still found the form compelling. Not $32 worth, but the tag was marked down by half, and it was sitting on a half-price table. Before I could ask for both discounts to be applied, the clerk had performed another binary fission. For $4, it was beyond a bargain, even if not quite pretty enough to display or pourable enough to use.

So sat it alone on the counter for a few years, thirsting for a useful role.

Then one day I noticed a general resemblance to ancient Mediterranean oil lamps. Though for external vision I prefer electric lighting when the sun is in flight, a butane camping torch when the power is out, or a candle lantern if vapors be exhausted, there is something inwardly delightful about an old-style lamp. Especially if one happens to keep a lot of extra-virgin cold-press olive juice around; that makes for a rather pleasanter aroma than, say, kerosene, tallow, or rendered whale blubber. With needle-nose pliers, I carefully snapped out the internal clay screen. When a cotton string proved to transport fuel too slowly, and commercial fiberglass wicks were all too big, I teased a bundle of just the right size from a spare bit of wood-stove door gasketing (available anywhere that cold and cordwood meet, probably at no charge for the snippet required) and threaded it down the spout. Here is the result:

Is it perfect? Not hardly, at least in this relative world. Classical lamps often have a shallow cup surrounding the wick, so that oil—which, as we all know, tends to be pulled away from the flame by a thermal variant of the same Marangoni Effect that engenders wine tears—does not drip down the spout. You can see a hint of this in the photo; though it has not progressed beyond a slight slick, I still keep the lamp in a small saucer. (Japanese porcelain with a blue fugu design, per the crossing of styles mentioned above.) Is it useful? Useful‽ How did that get in there? It is pleasing to eye and nose. Alas, it would not suit for warming o-cha no mizu, or even brightening a brew-table: the aroma, though delicious, would overpower most infusions. Perhaps I’ll make another with an orange-yellow flickering LED in the spout and a fake-flame cellophane tassel above. Or perhaps not. Does tea-seed oil smell nicely when it burns?

In the Diamond Sutra, the Buddha reminds us that

... this is how to contemplate our existence
in this fleeting world:

Like a tiny drop of dew, or a bubble floating in a stream;
Like a flash of lightning in a summer cloud,
Or a flickering lamp, an illusion, a phantom, or a dream.
So is all conditioned existence to be seen.

Sometimes it takes a dream to reveal dream, an illusion to reveal that all is illusion, a flickering lamp to reveal a more persistent and immanent radiance. It is said that of the four million words put into Buddha’s mouth since the Council of Arhats, the only surviving ones that actually came out of it were his last, beginning with

Atta dipa viharatha: You are the light itself; here abide.

Until we each and all arrive at that non-place of no-attainment, we need all the illumination we can find. In that spirit, this Yankee-thrift tip for turning an object of limited utility into another of equally limited but different utility—like Gaiman’s werewolf who treasured “a small bone that he had carved into the shape of a small bone”—is offered in humble hope that it may bring pleasure and, in these parlous times, help to generate honorable employment for out-of-work teapots everywhere.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Yi Mok and the Ch’abu 茶賦


When Yi Mok wrote the Ch’abu 茶賦 (Korean Ode to Tea) in the late fourteen hundreds, the Ode joined the long and illustrious history of tea. For centuries, Korean court annalists wrote of tea in the kingdom’s earliest records, and scholars and poets filled their literary compilations with belles lettres devoted to the herb. But until the Ode, there was no formal Korean treatment of tea. Yi Mok was the first to write in detail about tea on behalf of the literati, and for his contribution to the distinctive peninsular culture of tea, he is known as the Father of Tea Koreana.

Yi Mok lived during a time when the Korean throne and state were governed by a staunchly neo-Confucian ruler and bureaucracy. With the destruction of the Koryō dynasty (918-1392 A.D.), the Chosŏn (1392-1910 A.D.) government discredited and disbanded the Buddhist establishment, its priests defrocked or driven into seclusion. Few monasteries were sanctioned under the Chosŏn, and the diminished Buddhist hierarchy was strictly controlled by the Confucianist government. Tea survived in the remaining temples where abbots and priests used tea in ritual and ceremony and employed the herb as a meditational aid. As an aesthetic practice, tea was preserved within Buddhism by individual priests and small groups of monks living in remote mountain hermitages scattered throughout the country, especially in the distant south where terrain, climate, and warm ocean currents were favorable to wild and cultivated tea.

By comparison, tea flourished greatly in the royal palace and at court. Like the Koryō before them, the Chosŏn adopted tea, and early in the dynasty routines of tea were administered daily by a special office staffed by bureaucrats with specific grades and official titles. In 1474, the rites of state included tea in the conduct of major ceremonies. As tea was maintained as a ritual necessity at the government level, society and common etiquette prescribed tea for ceremonies at the coming of age, weddings, funerals, and memorials. Although observed as an essential part of official and daily life, tea as a form of beauty or pleasure or spiritual attainment gradually faded, except among the literati such as Yi Mok.

Hanjae Yi Mok 寒齋 李穆 (1471-1498 A.D.) was a member of the governing class of Confucian scholar-officials (yangban 兩班). His father, Yi Yun-Saeng 李閏生 (active ca. 15th century A.D.), served the royal court of King Sŏngjong 成宗 (née Yi Hyeŏl 李娎; reign 1469-1495) with the title of Third Minister. Yi Mok was a brilliant student. At the age of eighteen, he passed the State Examinations and was awarded the chinsa 進士 degree. Even as a young man, he was known for his strong moral convictions and courage, suffering exile late in 1489 for his stands against the throne; the following year, he was allowed to return to Seoul. But in 1498, Yi Mok was caught up in the Muo sahwa 戊午士禍, the first of several violent “literati purges” ordered by Prince Yŏnsan (Yŏnsan-gun 燕山君; Yi Yong 李隆; reign 1494-1506 A.D.). Yi Mok was executed at the age of twenty-seven.

In his short life, Yi Mok experienced the art of tea from an early age as clan ritual as well as family ceremony and etiquette. The habit of tea was reinforced as a scheduled refreshment in the regimen of the Confucian academies he attended as a student and scholar. As an official, he took tea as a regular feature of government, an institutional nicety punctuating meetings throughout the bureaucratic day. He was likely taught to appreciate tea in the literati manner by his teachers and friends. But aside from the routine exposure to tea common to all Korean scholars of the time, Yi Mok admitted he did “not understand tea.” In the early Chosŏn, all major works on tea were from China. It was only after reading the Chajing 茶經 (Book of Tea, 780 A.D.) by the Chinese tea master Lu Yü that Yi Mok “gained a little” of tea’s “true nature” and came to “treasure it.” Through the Chajing and later Chinese writings, he gained a purely continental perspective on tea. In 1496, he was sent to China and spent some months in the Ming capital at Beijing where he learned more about tea from his academic sponsors, Chinese teachers and counterparts, and friends before returning to Korea. At some time between 1496 and1498, Yi Mok was moved to write the Ch’abu, a learned rhapsody of tea in a high literary prose that circulated among his family and friends in the scholarly and official communities in Korea as well as in China, where he undoubtedly maintained contacts.

As for the reasons why he wrote the Ch’abu, Yi Mok responded to critics who equated tea with burdensome taxes and the ills of the people, saying, “How can this be the intention of Heaven? No doubt, it is the fault of man, not tea.” He observed that the ancients made the things that pleased them better known. If viewing the moon or drinking wine were the source of pleasure, poets wrote rhapsodies and poetry about them; songs were sung and music composed about the delights of the zither or the beauty of chrysanthemums. Declaring that tea was the highest of all pleasures, he lamented that none thus far had extolled its virtues and likened the situation to the abuse of a worthy man. Luxuriating in the poetic moment, he waxed lyrical; warming with enthusiasm to his subject, Yi Mok exaggerated.

In truth, many Korean writers and poets had over the centuries contributed greatly to the art and philosophy of tea. The scholar Yi Kyu-bo 李奎報 (1168-1241) proclaimed that tea and the Way were the same, and Yi Saek 李檣 (1328-1396) promoted tea as as a spiritual discipline and a means to Enlightenment. Yi Kyu-bo and Yi Saek were intimately familiar with Chinese teas, referring to the many continental varieties in their poetry and writings. The poet Sŏ Kŏ-jŏng 徐居正 (1420-1488) wrote fondly of “birds’ tongue” tea and spent his time picking tender “buds of golden dew.” Brewing his tea in an ancient tripod, Sŏ Kŏ-jŏng compared his poems to the Song of Tea and himself to the Chinese Daoist Lu Tong 陸仝 (775-835). Tea had been cultivated in Korea since the ninth century and was sent periodically to the courts of China as tribute through the dynasties. In return, imperial Chinese emissaries presented to Korean kings gifts of tea and costly tea equipage and wares. Indeed, Yi Mok’s trip to Beijing was an example of the enduring relations between China and Korea, representing just a single instance amidst the countless cultural connections held in common by the empire and kingdom.

Returning home, Yi Mok resolved to write the Ode in order to “investigate the names of tea, examine their places of production, and judge their superior and inferior qualities.” He composed the Ch’abu in classical Chinese using an extremely elegant but highly literary style. Accepting completely the purely Daoist origins and uses of tea, Yi Mok referred exclusively to the apocrypha and ignored the proprietary claims of Buddhism on its practice. Such use of arcane Daoist figures and esoteric lore tested the knowledge of common academics: only the cognoscenti could fully comprehend the Ch’abu and appreciate Yi Mok’s scholarship and sensitivity to the art of tea. The literati were composed of members of the Confucian elite and, despite the intolerance of their religion in the early Chosŏn, included like minded Buddhist clerics and laity. The Ode was not only a work of literary merit, but also a rare fifteenth-century record of tea; moreover, it was on a par with the Chapu 茶譜 (Treatise on Tea, 1440) by the Chinese Ming imperial prince Zhu Qüan 朱權 (1378-1448).

Though thoroughly laced with Chinese allusions and imagery, the Ch’abu may be justifiably viewed as an essentially Korean expression of tea, a significant and distinguished work replete with the tastes, sentiments, and remarkable insights of the young but gifted master, Yi Mok.

Figure 1: Portrait of Cho Chae-ho 趙載法, Duke of Pungwon, 18th century
Korea: Chosŏn dynasty (1392-1910)
album painting: ink and color on silk
35.5cm x 27.3cm, Mounted: 44.4cm x 33.2cm
The Cleveland Museum of Art

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Korean Tea Texts, Classical and Modern [iii]: An Outline and Select Highlights of the Dongdasong《東茶頌》


[[EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the third in a series of entries by Warren Peltier on Korean tea texts. For the first and second entries, click here and here. This third entry is an examination of the Dongdasong of Seon monk Cho Ui 艸衣禪師.]]

Previously, we looked at a broad overview of Korean tea books both classical and modern. When we examine the contents of Cho Ui’s book Dongdasong (Praise for Eastern Tea) 《東茶頌》, we can learn many things about Cho Ui himself. It’s apparent that he was very well versed in Chinese tea classics. He must have spent a tremendous amount of time gathering tea references, studying them, and then being inspired to write poetic verses about them. He is one of Korea’s greatest tea scholars. We should admire him for his works and contribution to tea culture and tea history. Here I provide a closer look at the general contents of the Dongdasong, a 2,300-word essay divided into 31 parts.

Part 1 is a description of the tea plant and its characteristics. Cho Ui quotes the Classic of Tea 《茶經》where Lu Yu describes the tea tree for us: “The tea tree is like the Gualu, leaves like gardenia, flower like white rose.” Gualu 瓜蘆 is also called Gaolu 臯蘆, which we know today as Kuding cha or Ilex kudingcha; the leaves of which were also prepared and drunk as tea even in ancient times. (Gualu and Gaolu are ancient words for this plant.)

Part 3 quotes Shen Nong's Classic of Food 《神農食經》: “When tea is consumed for a long time, it causes one to gain strength.” Cho Ui records the quote as coming from Yandi's Classic of Food《炎帝食經》; the two figures are sometimes regarded as being the same person. This quote comes from Chapter 7 of Lu Yu's Classic of Tea. Shen Nong's Classic of Tea, if it ever existed, is a long-lost book; only fragmentary evidence of it remains in quotes such as these.

Part 4 cites Luo Da Jing’s 羅大經 Song-dynasty poem Tea Sounds 《茶聲》:

Pine winds and juniper rains first arrive; Quickly I lift brass bottle to leave bamboo stove.

Waiting until after voices heard all fall silent; One bowl of Spring Snow surpasses fine wine.

Note: 'Pine winds and juniper rains' is a poetic way to describe the sound of boiling water. It’s like wind soughing in the pines and light rain falling on juniper branches. This is exactly the moment to remove the brass bottle (kettle) from the tea stove, in order to prevent the water temperature from rising too high for green tea. When all sounds fall silent (as from the kettle), a bowl of powdered green tea picked in early spring is sipped in quiet contemplation -- a beverage to which not even the best wine can compare.

Part 5 quotes the Er Ya's 《爾雅》definition of Jia 檟, one of the ancient characters for tea: “Jia is bitter tu”. The Guang Ya 《廣雅》 dictionary is also quoted: “In the areas of Jing and Ba the leaves are picked as a drink; aids in sobering from alcohol. It makes one sleep less. Both of these entries are found in Chapter 7 of the Classic of Tea.

Part 6 cites an anecdote about tea in the Yanzi Chunqiu 《晏子春秋》which is also recorded in Chapter 7 of the Classic of Tea. The Yanzi Chunqiu is a record of taking tea with meals, and is important because it illustrates the use of tea as a food (rather than a beverage) early on in the history of China. Yanzi Chunqiu was written in the Spring and Autumn period, around 550 BCE.

Part 7 cites the Shen Yi Ji 《神異記》, which gives a tale of picking tea. This too is recorded in the Classic of Tea, Chapter 7 《茶經七之事》 .

Part 8 quotes a story from the Yi Yuan 《異苑》 which gives a tale of offering tea to spirits. Also recorded in the Classic of Tea, Chapter 7 《茶經七之事》 .

Part 9 cites Zhang Meng Yang’s 張孟陽 poem, 'Deng Cheng Du Lou Shi' 《登成都樓詩》. Yet again, this is recorded in the Classic of Tea, Chapter 7 《茶經七之事》.

Part 10 gives an account of Sui Dynasty emperor Sui Wen Di 隨文帝 drinking tea; found in Sui Shu 《隨書》; and finding it efficacious as a medicine. Sui Shu is a history of the Sui dynasty (581-618 CE), written in the Tang.

Part 11 cites another Tang Dynasty historical record, the Yun Xian Za Ji《雲仙雜記》 by Feng Zhi 馮贄. This contains an anecdote from yet another historical record, the Man Ou Zhi 《蠻甌志》, of the custom at the Jue Lin Temple 覺林寺of producing 3 grades of tea; the highest grade, “Purple Horn Velvet Fragrance,” was reserved and used as an offering to Buddha, while the lowest-grade tea was consumed by the monks.

Part 12 gives reference to Du Yang Za Bian 《杜陽雜編》 by Su E 蘇鶚; written in the Tang Dynasty. The tea served to Princess Tong Chang 同昌公主 had nicknames like “green flower” and “purple bloom.”

Part 14 mentions Cai Xiang of the Song dynasty. And mention is made of the green cake teas called Dragon Phoenix Ball (Long Feng Tuan) 龍鳳團 of what is now the Wuyi and Jianou area of Fujian. Dragon Phoenix Ball was an Imperial Tribute Tea.

The ideas in part 15 are cited from Cai Xiang's 蔡襄 Record of Tea 《茶錄》, written in the Song; the remarks repeated are found under the heading “Fragrance.” Tea has natural fragrance and taste. Anything added to the tea (to try to improve flavor or scent) effectively spoils it.

Part 18 cites Northern Song-dynasty references from the Chuan Ming Record《荈茗錄》, written by Tao Gu 陶谷. In this book, the Wuyi area is poetically described as “countryside of vermilion mountains and green waters.” The book, part of a larger work, is divided into 18 sections which describe some interesting anecdotes during this era in tea history.

Part 21 cites Su Yi's 蘇廙 16 Grades of Hot Water 《十六湯品》, written in the Tang Dynasty. This book describes the states or condition of boiling water for tea and classifies them into 16 grades. The book expands upon the states of boiled water as described in Lu Yu’s Classic of Tea.

Part 22 quotes the Classic of Tea: “Tea has Nine Difficulties; one is manufacture, two is distinguishing quality, three is utensils, four is fire, five is water, six is roasting, seven is powder, eight is boiling, nine is drinking....” These are what Lu Yu considers as the main points to grasp in producing a satisfactory, salubrious bowl of tea.

Part 26 cites Lu Yu's Classic of Tea 《茶經》and other sources giving reference to the best growing conditions (soils, mountains) necessary to produce the finest tea; while stating which types of tea buds make the finest tea.

Part 27 gives reference to Zhang Yuan's Record of Tea. He cites the section on picking tea. In Record of Tea, picking tea the first 5 days before Gu Yu (Before the Rains) is the finest tea; second in quality is the 5 days after Gu Yu (After the Rains); inferior is the next 5 days after this period. Then, Cho Ui states for picking Eastern Tea, before or after Gu Yu is too early. But after Li Xia (Start of Summer) passes, this is the proper time to pick it. So tea-picking times vary depending on growing area.

Part 28 also cites Zhang Yuan's Record of Tea, this time citing the section on tea manufacture.

Part 29 also cites the section on Brew Method from Zhang Yuan's Record of Tea. There is also some interesting commentary added to it.

Part 30 quotes Lu Tong’s 盧仝 'Tea Song'《七碗茶歌》.

Part 31 also quotes Zhang Yuan's Record of Tea, the section titled 'Tea Drinking Method'; but perhaps a better title would be 'Tea Enjoyment Method.' This section in Zhang Yuan’s book doesn’t specifically state how tea should be drunk, but rather, with how many guests to drink tea.