In sixteenth century Japan, Sen no Rykiu codified the tea ceremony, setting the essence of the Japanese Way of Tea as it’s still practised today. I like to think that in four hundred years from now, somewhere on Earth, a few eccentric souls will gather around a bottle of wine and, losing themselves in the beauty, grace and delight of the senses, will marvel again, rediscovering the eternal link that unites them to the Universe, the source of life and the Mystery of things... Then, they will experience a joy beyond words, then they will be children, then they will be gods. That’s the Way of Wine.
— Thierry Forbois, The Way of wine manuscript, fragment.
In this age, experiencing a pure moment of joy is rare. Inundated by self-imposed demands, beguiled by an orgy of modern-world distractions, most of us let our lives pass by without ever tasting or knowing, in the delight of our bodies and minds, an authentic moment of abundance.
Fortunate are those who have experienced, at least once, a moment’s grace in which suddenly, like a pause in the chaos, the world reveals itself in a dreamlike flash. Colours become so intense that you can almost feel them. Sounds no longer enter through the ear, but reverberate directly in your head. Smells are so intense that you taste them. Details appear, leaping suddenly out of the void. The world awakens inside you in all its subtlety, vitality and richness. Leaving the golden cage that you have made for yourself, you pierce the world’s veil of appearances and become the movement of life itself. Awe is a profound spiritual experience. It is the soul breathing beneath our masks. It makes our faces open the way sunflowers open wide each morning. At its most intense, awe is resurrection. It revives our senses to their original sensitivity. It revives our intelligence to its vitality. Feelings of awe are triggered by a wide range of phenomena and circumstances, such as natural beauty, impressive art, divine epiphanies or the vastness of space. During the years when the ritual of the Way of wine was gestating, a single thought guided Thierry Forbois as he developed his art: create a moment as an open path to experience the ‘sublime’.