茶道入門


"Kyougoku" or The Highest Capital at the Tokugawa Museum of Art.

“Kyougoku” or The Highest Capital. At the Tokugawa Museum of Art.

Kaki no Heta (Persimmon Calyx) is a type of Korean tea bowl fired during the Early Joseon Dynasty.

The name “Persimmon Calyx” comes from how the colour and shape of the tea bowls resemble the calyx of persimmons.

A thin glaze is laid over the body that is made of a clay full of iron and mixed with sand. The dark brown colour of the glaze gives the bowl an earthy sheen. While the bowl is fairly thick, it is light to handle and has a feeling of somber refinement.

As for the shape, the mouth of the bowl has line, called a toikuchi, cut around it with a spatula . The hips of the bowl are stepped, and the bust of the bowl is wide. It’s tall foot is called a bachi-koudai and the inside of the foot is shaved in a circle. It is considered a type of Totoya tea bowl.

Famous Kaki-no-heta bowls include Kyougoku at Tokugawa Museum, Bishamon-dou at Hatakeyama Memorial Museum, and Ootsu at Fujita Museum.

One of my first tea bowls was a kyogen-bakama style bowl

Unkaku Chawan–a type of kourai chawan–is also called Unkakude. To distinguish it from Gohonunkaku of later generations, it is also called Old Unkaku (Kounkaku). Unkaku is a type of inlaid celadon porcelain from the latter part of the Goryeo period. Various works such as dishes, bowls, and altar fittings have been made in the unkaku style, but of all of these the tea bowl is selected by tea masters.
The name Unkaku (lit. Cloud-Crane) comes from the common pattern depicting cranes among clouds.
The inlaid patterns, which began with floating clouds and wheeling cranes, include various things such as peonies, chrysanthemums, arabesques, thunder crests, grapes, pomegranates, and circles. The pattern similar to the circle crest on the clothes which are worn by Tarou Kaja of kyogen fame is called “Kyougen Bakama”. A bowl without any pattern is called “Muji Unkaku”.
Many unkaku chawan are cylindrical in shape, but there are bowl shaped ones too.
A pattern is carved out the hardened dark red clay using the nobori or kataoshi techinique. After this, the bowl is coated in a white or black mud which is wiped off. Then, it is entirly glazed to the inside of the foot with a muddy celedon glaze.

The exceedingly charming Nomura Mansai as Tarou Kaja. Notice the crests on his hakama.

Taken from this informative Sado Nyumon.

Chasen (tea whisk) is a tool made of bamboo and used for whisking together matcha and hot water poured into a tea bowl.

A thin thread is plaited through to seperate (the tines) half way up the approx. 10 cm long bamboo tube, and there are various versions according to school and purpose. Omotesenke uses susutake, Urasenke in the beginning of the school mostly uses shirotake (hachiku), and Mushanokojisenke uses shichiku (kurotake).

The shape of the tip varies according to the school. In Mushanokojisenke, the tip of the chasen is straight, and the outer tines are curved inward. In the Urasenke school, at first the tip was curved, but it seems it departed from Rikyu’s style. Kankyuuan school (Mushanokojisenke) has the closest shape to the Rikyu’s style.

Of whisk shapes, the soft “kazuho” is used for thin tea and the “araho” with a firmer and tighter tip and about half as many tines is used for thick tea. There is also a tenmoku chasen used with a tenmoku chawan (Chinese tea bowl) and a naga chasen (long tea whisk) used with a tsutsu chawan (cyclindical).

The word chasen first appeared in “A Treatise on a General Survey of Tea” by the Emperor Huizong of the Song Dynasty.

「筅、茶筅以筋竹老者為之。身欲厚重,筅欲疏勁、本欲壯而未必眇、當如劍瘠之状。蓋身厚重、則操之有力而易於運用。筅疎勁如劍瘠、則撃拂雖過而浮沫不生。」
A whisk, or a tea whisk (chasen) is made from aged bamboo. The best have a thick, heavy base with a light, strong top. The strength of the whisk’s base and top must not be little. Also it should have the shape of ridges on a sword. When the base is thick and heavy it is easy to apply power when using it. When the top is light and strong with sword ridges, even over beating it, the floating foam is not produced.

But during the Ming Dynasty of the 15th century, matcha declined and the chasen was lost. In the “Graphic Tribute to Tea Utensils” of the Southern Song Dynasty (1269), an image of a chasen is included in “The Director of Bamboo”. The whisk shape is long and doesn’t divide the inner and outer tines. The tool used with a type of tea porriage called “furicha (okecha)” remaining in various places such as the Bote Tea in Aichi Prefecture, Botebote Tea in Shimane Prefecture, Batabata Tea in Toyama Prefecture, Bukubuku Tea in Okinawa Prefecture and Fi Tea in Kagoshima Prefecture bears a resemblance.

It is said that the modern chasen with seperated inner and outer tines was developed by Takayama Souzei (1455), a retainer of the lord Yamana Danjou and the teacher of the Kitano Renga Society, at the request of Murata Jukou who was cheif preist of the nearby Shoumyou-ji Temple.

This is the original Sado Nyumon in Japanese.

The Posture of Seiza, How to Stand, How to Sit

The Posture of Seiza

Omotesenke
For men, both knees are set apart to the degree they are stable. Women set both knees apart so a fist can be placed in the space between. Usually, only the big toes overlap, the left foot’s big toe beneath and the right foot’s big toe above. Be sure to stretch the hips and chest to sit correctly. The host places both hands on the lap. The guest, folding the hands, places them on the lap. Whichever hand is natural–right hand or left hand–is on top.

Urasenke
For men, the space between both knees is two fists. For women, the space between both knees is opened so one fist can be placed (between). As for the feet, the heels are opened to the degree the big toes overlap, and the hips are set (on that). Both elbows are slightly spread to the degree that the shape of a horizontal fist for men, a vertical fist for women, can be placed (between). To sit correctly, stretched your spine straight, be sure to pull the chin a little, and the face looks straight forward. The host seperates the elbows on both sides to about the degree of having one egg (between). Both hands are placed naturally on the lap, fingers uniform. The guest folds (the hands) slightly on the lap, with the right hand on top.

Mushanokoji
To sit correctly, men make an allowance of about (enough to) place one fist space in the space between both knees. Women do not really seperate their knees. Straighten your back, With the feeling of hanging your center of balance a little to the back, the fellow big toes on both feet overlap to the degree they are slightly touching. As for the hands, the host places them above both knees. The guest places both hands slightly overlapping (left hand on top) on top the lap.

Yabunouchiryu
Men sit correctly opening both knees with about (enough space to) place two fists in the space between. Women with one fist placed in the space between both knees. Both hands are overlaped on the lap so that the fingertips are covered.

How to Stand

Omotesenke
Both hands set on both knee caps respectively, do not move without changing the position of both feet. Raising your hips half way slowly, be sure not swing your body, and stand up. When standing up, be sure that both feet are uniform. (You musn’t draw one foot back).

Urasenke
Leaving both hands set lightly on the knees, simultaneously rise to tuck the toes under of both feet, set the hips above both heels. Making sure not to pull down the upper posture from the hips, make the heels of both feet uniform. When standing up, because the general rule is standing with the knee in the direction of geza, at a normal tea party, stand a little with the right knee. As you stand up, lower both hands to both sides, and stand straight up. In this case, because the right foot is half a foot forward of the left foot, advance forward with the left foot.

Mushanokojisenke
Simultaneously tuck the toes under both feet, set the hips above the heels, and move (one of your feet) forward half a foot. Raise that foot’s knee a little, steady the upper body for a moment on both the left and right heels, and being sure to push up the upper body, stand up. When standing up, make the feet uniform.

Yabunouchiryu
Bend the toes inside, and set your center of balance on top of the heels. Now, pull the right knee, and then pull the left knee, and once more pull the right knee, and raising your hips halfway, tuck the toes under (the feet). Stand up from the right knee. This time, the heels of both feet remain fixed together on the inside. At once standing up, pull the left foot and make both feet uniform.

How to Sit

Omotesenke
Sit with both feet lined up naturally. You musn’t sit by pulling (one of your feet back) half a foot.

Urasenke

Mushanokojisenke
Sit by putting one of your feet a little forward, lowering your upper body, setting down in turn the knee of the foot behind and then the knee of the foot put (forward), and making both knees uniform. *You musn’t sit making both feet uniform from the knees.

Yabunouchiryu
Making both feet’s toes uniform, pull the right foot half a foot, then full the left foot half a foot back. Once more, pull the right foot back and quietly bend both knees and lower the hips. Place in turn the right knees, then left knee. Lower the hips to the heels and sit by pulling back your left knee.

You can find the original text at this Sado Nyumon.

How to Walk

You shouldn’t step on thresholds or edges of the tatami mats.

Omotesenke
One tatami mat is about six feet long and half a tatami mat is three feet long, so walk planning on advancing forward at only a foot’s length. When you are not carrying anything, both hands should hang naturally in front. The position of the eyes is slightly lowered, rather than straight ahead.
Entering the tea room, enter with your left foot (first).

Urasenke
Walk as one tatami mat is about five steps (natural steps). Settling the hips, and putting strength into the lower abdomen, stand up straight. Pull the chin to the degree (as when) you look forward. As for the hands, if you are a man, the tips of your thumb and index finger meet, making a little circle. Then lower them to your side. If you are a woman, arranging your fingers naturally, lower them to the front. With each step, you should walk like you are slightly raising the tips of your toes and do not seperate the heels from the tatami.
Entering the tea room, enter with the right foot. Leaving, leave with the left foot.

Mushanokojisenke
You should aim to walk one tatami with six steps. Also, so that you interpose the center line of the tatami, walk both sides straightly. Shift your balance from one foot to the other. For example, when you step forward with your right foot, leave your balance in your left foot with the tip of the toe to the right foot you stepped forward with a little unsteady. Gradually shift your balance to the right foot as the right foot falls behind. At the same time, the left heel becomes unsteady. Next, the right foot holds your balance and the left foot advances. When the right foot passes right beside (your left), the tips of your feet appear level for a moment. As you continue forward and leave, the tip of the left toe becomes unsteady. If you repeat this movement, you can walk in a smooth manner.
Entering the tea room, enter with the foot (closest) to the pillar (supporting the wall). When you leave, there is no established rule.
NB: According to the matter of entering with the foot closest to the pillar, it is for the sake of turning your upper body in the direction of the guests. Therefore, according to the tea room, which foot–right or left–you enter with changes.

You can find the original Japanese text with pictures at this Chado Nyumon.

How to Bow

Sitting Bow

Omotesenke
Press both hands (against the floor) in the shape of 八(8).This time, women have both hands about 7 to 8 centimeters apart. Men have them no more than 20 centimeters apart. Don’t just lower your head, you should lower forward your whole body. Bow naturally at about a 30 degree angle.

Urasenke
Arrange both hands’ fingertips.
As for bowing, there are three kinds of bowing, “formal”, “semi-formal”, and “informal”.
For the formal bow, quietly put down both hands before your knees. As you lower the hands, deepen (into a bow) the upper half of your body forward naturally, fixing your whole palm against the tatami mat. Keeping your back straight and sort of fixing your abdomen to your knees, bend you upper body forward. Do this during the admiring of the scroll, the communal bow between host and guests, and when as guest you partake of the tea.
For the semi-formal bow, straightening your back, bend the upper body forward. Lower and fix your fingertips up to the second joint before (yourself) on the tatami. Do this when greeting your fellow guests.
For the informal bow, fix the fingertips on the tatami before your knees. Lower the upper body slightly forward. Do this as host when in the middle of a temae.

Mushanokojisenke
Both hands meet slightly, so that the left hand is in the front. Fix the fingertips lightly to the tatami. Straightening the back, lower the head carefully.

Yabunouchiryuu
Both hands meet with the left hand in front, the fingernail of the index finger overlaping (the other). Fix the palms of the hands on the tatami and slowly lowever the upper body.
The most important thing is to bear in mind that when raising the head, you do not raise it too quickly or too early so that you do not seem thoughtless. Even compared to when you lower (the head), raise (the head) with a slow feeling. If you are sure to do this, you will naturally give a courteous impression.

The original text with pictures can be found at this Sadou Nyuumon.

How to Place the Fan

In chanoyu, the fan is carried throughout the four seasons. When greeting, or when admiring the tokonoma or tea utensils, it is used by placing it before your knees.

Omotesenke
Until the host is greeted, the fan is placed by the side of the right knee. When greeting the host, greet by putting out the fan before your knees, (the top) facing the left. When the greeting is finish, place it behind yourself. This time, the first guest’s fan is placed with the top facing the direction of the second guest. For the second guest and below, the top is facing the direction of the first guest.

Urasenke
After entering the tea seating, and arriving at your permanent seat, place it behind yourself with your right hand. This time, the first guest’s fan is placed with the top facing the direction of the second guest. For the second guest and below, the top is facing the direction of the first guest.

Mushanokojisenke
The fan is always placed on the right side. When greeting the the host, greet place it out before your knees. When the greeting is finished, place the fan vertically on your right side. Only when standing to admire during the sumi-temae is it placed horizontally behind you.