Cinnabar - Vintage Wild Tree Sheng Puerh 1.5 oz
This tea is about transformation. In flavor and energy, it maintains a strong wood-fire quality with slight pleasant astringency and layers of cinnamon, nutmeg and spices in the later steepings. The body has good structure and thickness, but not as oily as many teas with this age. Cinnabar is incredibly patient, just like the process of self-refinement, and you can find new qualities in it for many years.
In Taoist mind-body-spirit cultivation, or inner alchemy, the human being is seen as a microcosm of the universe. By harmonizing the five elements in the body, the practitioner is lead to greater alignment with operations of the Tao, the great cosmological principle of everything. This quest for immortality involves practices of purification, as well as the consumption and use of various concoctions known as alchemical medicines or elixirs. One essential elixir was cinnabar, a mineral with a reddish-brown vermillion colour, and the most common source of mercury in nature. The particular color and energy of cinnabar in Chinese culture is considered to be the zenith, representing the sun, fire, royalty and Yang energy. Cinnabar could also be roasted and refined in a complex process, which produced a liquid form of silver known as quicksilver, which we know to be mercury. This substance was ingested but it could also be combined with sulphur and burned again to return to its natural form of cinnabar. Cinnabar was the yang to quicksilver's yin. This process of refinement and transformation is the means by which the alchemist transforms him/herself and thus merges with Life itself. Alas, we arrive at the name of this tea, gaining its appellation for the strong Yang Qi that moves from the core throughout the body, unblocking stuck Qi, opening and enlivening, as well as for the Mahogany red liquor with gold vermillion edges.