Most of us can’t imagine a morning without a hot freshly-brewed cup of joe spreading aroma all over the house. Millions of people drink coffee every day all over the world, engaging in a certain ceremony of coffee brewing, drinking, and socializing with other people. The history of coffee dates back hundreds of years and, believe it or not, has quite a religious origin. It is loved by Muslims, Sufis, Christians, and Pagans alike. Here is what you need to know about the fascinating history of coffee.
It all started in Ethiopia
There are no records of the first use of coffee beans, but we know for sure that it happened in Ethiopia. After all, this is the place where coffee originated from! That region is called Kaffa and it’s hard to say whether coffee got its name from there, or it was named after it. Of course, Ethiopians didn’t consume coffee as we do now – they crashed the coffee cherries, mixed them with some animal fat, and created a type of energy balls. All this happened around 850 AD.
Yemen, located on the Arabian Peninsula, acquired coffee plants from Ethiopia as they grew only there. The first coffee plantations were created in Yemen around 15th century and Sufi monks were the first ones to create a hot coffee drink by boiling coffee leaves and cherries. It was nothing like the modern-day coffee, but its energizing properties soon made it an all-time favourite of Sufi mystics, who drank it during their evening prayers. Their practices of chanting God’s name were lengthy and coffee helped them stay awake.
According to historians, coffee played an important part in Sufi ceremonies. It was served in a big clay vessel and the head of the meeting used a ladle to pour it into a small bowl, which was then passed around. Men, women, and children drank it together during the course of ceremony. The objective was to unify people and help them focus on the spiritual aspect of the world. The drink was energizing, but also helped attain the peace of mind.