茶の湯 in サンフランシスコ ・ Japanese Tea Ceremony を San Franciscoで

表千家四方社中の茶の湯ブログ Japanese Tea Ceremony Blog for Shikata Shachu – Omotesenke

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November 24 was a U.S. holiday known as “Thanksgiving.”  What are you thanksful for?  We have many things – big and small – to be thankful for.

このお 軸はお茶室定番の「日々是好日」、大徳寺黄梅院小林太玄和尚のお筆です。「今日も明日も毎日良い日」などと「Don’t Worry, Be Happy」という古い歌のような感覚かと思っていましたが、実はもっと奥がふかいんですね。たとえどんなことがあってもその日その日はまた二度とない一 日であるから、全身全霊を傾けて一日一日を大切に生きなければいけない、という教えなのだそうです。

This scroll is a staple in tea rooms: “Nichi-Nichi-Kore-Kounichi” (or alternatively, “Hibi-Kore-Kounichi“) by Rev. Taigen Kobayashi of Koubai-in at the Da’itokuji temple.  I used to think that it simply meant something like: “Everyday is a good day” or “Don’t worry, be happy” (as sung in an old song).  Wrong.  It has a lot deeper meaning.  Each day, regardless what happens – good or bad, is a day that will never be repeated.  It happens only once.  You have to live each day with all your heart and all your soul.  That’s the real meaning.


This scroll reminds me of a friend who unexpectedly passed away a few years ago.  He went to sleep one day, and did not wake up.  I am thankful for each day as a gift.





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風炉から炉へ・From Furo to Ro


It is rather easy to lose touch with seasonal changes in our modern lifestyle, especially during this period of global warming.  “Robiraki” once was done around the time when “your breath turns white.”  Here is an interesting passage I read that I would like to shre:


Originally in China, it was furo all year around.  Consequently, the “sho’in-style” tea (as exemplified by the tea practice of the Muromachi shogunate) naturally used furo all year long.  During the process of adapting the Chinese tea culture for Japan, there emerged two seasons: furo and ro.  In those days, the typical Japanese dwelling was a farm house, where you find a hearth (ro).  When it turned chilly, and the breath turned white, light fire in the hearth and entertain guests.  That age-old tradition was incorporated into the tea culture.  “Incorporated” may sound like it was just added on – but I think this incorporation of “ro” transformed the tea culture into the true chanoyu.  In other words, the tea culture of foreign origin took root in Japanese culture and customs.

「宗心茶話」(堀内宗心)世界文化社 2010

Originally published December 3, 2015


炉開き茶会2016・Robiraki 2016



Robiraki Tea Event was hosted by the Northern California Domon-kai at the Nichibei Kaikan building.  There were three (3) sessions of usucha in hiroma (large room) and four (4) sessions of koicha in koma (small room).  It was unseasonably warm for mid-November.  It felt almost too hot inside the tea room.


The scroll is “kotobuki” (felicitation, long life).  How auspicious!  “Robiraki” marks the beginning of a new year for tea world – and for that occasion, it was the appropriate scroll.


Thank you for your efforts in organizing the event.