Hozenji Shrine, two blocks south of the neon and noise of central Dotonbori, is a last remnant of a temple founded in 1637. Its diety of Fudomyoo is splashed with water to guard against evil and grant any wish, and is now covered with moss as a result.
Osaka – Fact Check

What’s the point of the Japanese tea ceremony?

Photo by Ton Koene

Osaka – Fact Check What’s the point of the Japanese tea ceremony?

Wabi-sabi is an aesthetic that was established by the monk Sen-no Rikkyu (1521-1591), who is largely responsible for the form of the traditional Japanese tea ceremony.

Kieran Meeke
Kieran Meeke Travel Writer

Often called untranslatable, some of the confusion comes from treating wabi-sabi as one word when it is two – with different meanings. Wabi refers to a simple life, albeit one made so by choice, and with a strong link to nature. It is the life of a Zen monk, or the philosophy espoused in Walden Wood by Henry David Thoreau. Sabi refers to the beauty of imperfection caused by time passing. So the wrinkled skin of old age has beauty, as does a well-worn tea cup or a well-thumbed book.

The tea ceremony is built around wabi-sabi, with every repetitive gesture being significant – as are details such as how the flowers are displayed. The point is to find happiness in the simple act of making tea. The words have been joined together partly because of their similar sound, but together they have added meaning. A wabi-sabi home is simple, but in a very human way, with every item being of beauty or significance.

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The "furisode" kimono worn by unmarried women has longer sleeves than the "tomesode" of a married one, which has a pattern only on its lower half. There are also "homongi" for formal visits and "tsukesage" for parties or weddings – all in colors and patterns to match the seasons. Photo by Ton Koene

Ton Koene

Ton Koene

Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Aperture
ƒ/1.4
Exposure
1/320
ISO
320
Focal
24 mm

The "furisode" kimono worn by unmarried women has longer sleeves than the "tomesode" of a married one, which has a pattern only on its lower half. There are also "homongi" for formal visits and "tsukesage" for parties or weddings – all in colors and patterns to match the seasons.

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