I'm homebrewing a high level monk NPC and stumbled on the intriguing feature Tongue of the Sun and Moon:
Starting at 13th level, you learn to touch the ki of other minds so that you understand all spoken languages. Moreover, any creature that can understand a language can understand what you say.
Now I'm not sure how to interpret the word "touch" in this case. The description of ki implies that this magical energy is closely related to the body of living beings:
[Ki] is an element of the magic that suffuses the multiverse—specifically, the element that flows through living bodies.
Is the feature's description meant literally, as in: touch another creature('s ki) and therefore understand their language? Or is this actually meant figuratively, leaving it open for interpretation how this ki is being touched? In the latter case, I can even imagine that by just being in touch with living creatures around you, you passively understand all languages. This seems immensely powerful, hence my confusion. In the literal interpretation it could perhaps be limited to just the languages a specific individual know, and requires touching the head of a (N)PC for example. So in short, by RAW:
Does a monk need to physically touch a creature before using Tongue of the Sun and Moon?