One of the legends about the origins of coffee is that a goat herder in Ethiopia watched his goats frolicking about after eating from the coffee plant. Soon, one legend says monks nearby began enjoying the drink and found that it increased their concentration when doing religious studies.
I’m glad to hear that monks were in on the beginning of our love of coffee. Deep down, I’ve always felt there is something transcendent about holding that endless ring of porcelain heat in your hands, about tipping the cup to your lips and gauging when it will not burn, about feeling the heat go immediately to your brain, bathing your prefrontal cortex with clarity. Of course one can “see” better when reading a text with a cup of coffee. A friend sent me a poem by the mystic Rumi on my birthday. Part of it said, “Inside your face the ancient manuscripts seem like rusty mirrors.” I suppose that anything, if we take it seriously enough, can point us to something deeper, larger, clearer–something less like manuscripts and more like rain.
Upside Down Devotion