The Morning Latte … A Sacred Ritual… The Importance of Ritual In Our Lives…



Rituals not only construct reality and make meaning;
they help us fashion the world as a habitable and hospitable place…

~ Herbert Anderson & Edward Foley ~

Brewing The Espresso…

Anyone who knows me well knows that the morning latte is sacrosanct. I’ve made jokes about it but it is absolutely true. When I sit down with my latte the day has actually finally begun, for me.

But you see first I must get up and walk the dogs. Then there are all the birds to feed and get fresh water and treats, and oh don’t forget the dogs treats too. Then of course the beta fish are all staring at me waiting to get fed.

There are plants to check and water and I have to check the feeders on the patio to make certain that they are all full. Nothing is more disconcerting than sitting here looking out on my lovely patio with many, many feeders and small antique sky blue spatterware buckets filled with water for drinking and bathing for the wildlings not tended to. I like to watch them from right here at my computer desk, with sleeping dogs now lying all around me and birds, inside and out, eating, frolicking, and starting their day. Then, and only then, do I go into the kitchen and fire up the Sacred Latte Machine.

I bow, do the Benevolent Latte Dance, speak well of it’s ancestors and pray, on my knees, that it might one more day serve me in its always gracious, lest not forget abundant manner… And it’s a lovely things to see, as above, the steam whistling out the top as the little pot fills with that fragrant strong coffee. Every nerve in my body tingles, my nose twitches, I am up on my tippy toes with excitement, a new day has begun…

Ritual is a statement of what we want and a
remembrance of the great cycle of things.


~ Brooke Medicine Eagle ~

Frothing The Milk…

Of course next comes the fun part and while I do blush to admit this I am very nearly an expert frother. You can’t really see it in these pictures because I had a heck of a time making the latte and taking pictures with my teeth, but I can put a 2 inch head of foam on that baby. I love to froth. Something about all that whooshing and watching the milk’s head rise and rise and rise. It’s so exciting…

Hold each moment sacred … give
each its true and due
fulfillment.

~Thomas Mann ~

Espresso in Bowl, Waiting For Frothed Milk…

At some point while I am frothing I reach over and pour the espresso in my big espresso bowl. These are actually large soup bowls. My son told me if my latte bowls got much bigger I should just go ahead and use a waste basket. Well he might be right but it would be aesthetically wrong. (Shudder) I’m all about aesthetics. It would give me nightmares… (Don’t pay any attention to the espresso that splashed on the counter. I’m sure I didn’t do that. I’m almost certain it was one of the household gnomes and let me tell you we’ve got more than our share around here…)
There is nothing so secular
that it cannot be sacred…

~ Madeleine L’Engle ~

The Perfect Latte, the size of the great state of Texas…

Finally, the hot, frothed milk is poured into the espresso and it is a moment like no other. It is in keeping with all of my other rather odd ways that I will very likely take the next two hours to drink it while I write. Some people cannot abide cold coffee, but you see, I enjoy all the stages.

At first, of course, it’s too hot to drink. Then one gingerly blows a little and takes tiny sips until finally courage takes over and a nice big sip is just right. Ahhhhh…. nothing like it. Then I settle in with my latte, answer (or make a stab at answering) the mountain of e-mail, start uploading pictures from my camera from the day before for this blog, work on sketching fiber projects and perhaps sit here and spin yarn while I think, or work on something in my lap (I’ve always got a basket of fiber projects right next to me.) while I think. There’s a lot of thinking and drinking going on. I love to hold the latte bowl in both hands, so warm, so comforting, and the days I wake up headachy it feels good to hold it against my forehead. Before I know it I’m off and running, pugs snoring all around me and sweet Moe sleeping silently on the couch. Sampson, as always, is directly under my chair here and his warm soft teddy bearish pug self keep my feet warm. Babs is sleeping daintily on her movie star bed and the parrots have settled down and are quietly playing. Except for Henry. Henry is with me where he mostly is when I’m sitting here working. On my shoulder, the back of my chair, or he sits on my forearm bobbing up and down while I type. Of course he likes his bit of latte…

Ritual is a sort of metaphysical house-work
intended
to sustain some continuity in
the world…

~ Mary Catherine Bateson ~


Henry and I would never attempt the
morning meeting before out latte…

(Please note: Coffee may be deadly for birds.
He gets a tiny nip of milk foam. That’s all!)

Finally, the day has begun. The espresso machine was cleaned before I ever left the kitchen. Very important because the milk jet can get clogged up and then you’re sunk. I may be a lousy housekeeper but I take sublime care of that which I care about. My animals, and the espresso machine. Well, we all have our priorities…

Friends exist side by side, absorbed in some common interest or vision for the world. Others may join such a friendship because they share the same vision. Understood this way, friendship is potentially the most inclusive of all relationships…

~ Herbert Anderson & Freda A Gardner ~


Here, I made one for you. Won’t you join me?

It seems only fair at this juncture to offer you a latte so I made another one, just for you. There it is above. It’s HOT now, so be careful. And perhaps you can tell me about your days, and what you’re thinking, and what ritual means to you? I’d love to hear. I love it when people leave notes in the comment section. Henry and I read them every morning over our latte…

Happy Days, and May the Great Mother
Latte Machine Smile Down On You…

Maitri

Make this the year your resolutions come true!

Make this the year your resolutions come true!

Comments

  1. My main ritual occurs at the end of the day…
    There is the “click” of the lighter, or the “snap-hiss!” of a match as I light the candles in my room. Then I turn off the light, and enter into Sacred Time. I take my time changing into pajamas, folding up clothes not needed anymore, and squaring things away in the mystic twilight.
    More often than not, I then move to my altar, lighting the candles there as well. I sit before it, and grab my “prayer beads” – a string of cheap plastic beads, in truth, that glow beautifully green in the candlelight. I wrap it around my left hand, and rub my hands back together, back & forth, moving into quiet mind. Eventually my hands slow, then stop, and I pray.
    After a time, I unwind the beads and place them back in their shell, to await their next use. I will sit at my altar for a while longer, then move through sacred gestures, blow out the candles, and arise.
    I can tell when I need to sit before my altar when I feel disconnected and rushed…and after, I always feel that I’ve “checked back in” with Reality.

    (didn’t mean to write a novel!) 😉

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