“You look very pretty today!” Every day, they tell her. And she wonders why they tell her this. Tomorrow? She thinks, will they say I am pretty again tomorrow? In Japan no one ever told her how pretty she looks. Especially not every day. She wonders if it is because she is Japanese. She wonders if tomorrow they will still think she is pretty. Though she has doubts about their sincerity, she accepts what they say, and secretly, it makes her feel good.
Looking at this cup of tea, I think: “This cup of tea looks delicious.” Before long, I find myself telling each cup of tea that it looks delicious. Every day, I look at the tea and say to it, “You look very delicious. This tea is good. This tea is delicious."
When you look at your cup of tea, tell it how it is. Say, “You are a wonderful cup of tea.” We taste the tea every day, but the taste sometimes differs from what we say. The real flavor, differing from the perceived flavor, is more beautiful because it is real. This connection to reality is more important and resonates with us on a deeper level. So even though, sometimes after telling the tea how wonderful it is, upon tasting the tea we find it to be bitter, or strong, or light, this connection to the reality is more beautiful to us than any perception of tea.