On Saturday, October 15, 2016, eight senior Isshin Kempo yudansha sat around a traditional Chinese tea house table in
Boonton at Sinofilia, for a two-hour, ritual tea guided by the gently
entrancing, Feng Xiao, to celebrate Tom Lyons
twenty-five years as a black belt.
Collectively, we represented over 200 years of martial arts experience.
It’s no small feat today to sustain one’s martial path for a decade, no
less two and a half decades.
We filled and emptied our cups of Fermented tea, White tea and an
aromatic, Jasmine. We paused in brief meditations, taking in the fragrance of
our surroundings, pausing at every refill to inhale our empty cup’s fragrance.
We tasted both the bitter and the sweet in our circle of friendship,
familiarity and shared passion for our discipline.
Our server, Feng Xiao,
a former Buddhist nun, delighted us with
the revelation of her past Kung Fu and Tai Chi practices and enchanted us with her Cha’an wisdom on this special occasion.
Martial life is always sweetest when you fill and empty your cups in