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An Ancient Tale - The Emperor Fairy, Shen Nong

It is said that the Yellow Emperor and the Emperor Fairy were both admired tribal leaders by ancient Chinese people. That's why all the Chinese people have claimed to be the off springs of the Yellow Emperor and Emperor Fairy since ancient times.

The Emperor Yellow, also called Xuanyuan, ruled the Central Plain area of ancient China and was said to be the inventor of boat and vehicle, Chinese characters, music, iatrology, sericulture and arithmetic. His mausoleum now is in Huangling County, Shanxi Province.

The Emperor Fairy, also known as Shen Nong (the Sage Farmer), was said to be the inventor of Chinese agriculture and pharmacy and the first person who discovered tea and the usage of it. In Ancient times, people lived a life of hunting, fishing and fruit picking, which was quite simple due to low social productivity and people were often suffering from illness and epidemic plague. The Emperor Fairy used wood to create the farm tools Lei and Si, which initiated China's agriculture.At the same time, he went almost everywhere, climbing mountains and reaching into waters, looking for medicinal herbs for preparation of traditional Chinese medicine treatments for people. He cared about his people so much that he tasted the wild plants with his own mouth to check their medicinal value.

It was said in the legend, once the Sage Farmer inadvertently tasted a toxic plant and became so painful that he collapsed under a small tree. After he woke up a while later, he felt thirsty, and started sweating and his heart beat fast like a fire burning in his stomach. The strong desire to survive motivated him to struggle to sit up and pick the leaves off a little tree to consume to stop the thirst. To his great surprise, the pain just disappeared after he ate the leaves from the little tree. He then ate more of that leaves and the juice from chewing the leaves made his mouth feel clear and exhilarated. "What a treasure tree!" The Sage farmer was so pleased that he jumped up and called this magical plant "tea". The Sage Farmer's Herbal Classic the story as well. In The classic of Tea, Lu Yu accordingly said: "tea as a drink originates from the Sage Farmer". The Sage Farmer initiated tea drinking. What's more, the spirit of "being people-oriented" and the unification of "life saving" and "life cherishing" were well revealed through his brave herbal research, which was full of courage to practice and innovation. These all serves as the precious sources of the Chinese Tea Ceremony.