Sunday, 8 June 2008

Myths, rituals and symbols

In one of sessions today we were encouraged to think more deeply about culture and to share with others about the myths and stories of our own culture, its rituals and symbols.
This was quite a challenge for me - what is my own culture - Britain, France, parts of Germany?
And in any of those cultures I've only myself been part of minority cultures, Protestantism in France, non-conformity in England. I am very much a child of post-modernity with my French Protestant Huguenot cross round my neck, my German surname and my BBC radio programmes playing in the background of my life.
Then I thought about cups of tea and how even though I now drink mine without milk I would still even now more naturally think about making a cup of tea when I come home, than preparing an apéritif.
The offer of a hot drink is often the welcoming ritual into a British home - it's not as religious or formal as the Japanese tea ceremony nor as ritualised as the Pacific Islands Kava ceremony - but it is a way of saying welcome. Some may find the coffee or tea rather undrinkable but it's still a way of saying make yourself at home.