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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Enso’u・Ta’iki Tachibana


Enso’u” is a circle drawn with an ink brush in one sweep, and is one of drawing designs associated with the Zen Buddhism.  It is also referred to as “ichi enso’u” or “enso’uzu.”


It is believed that the circular shape symbolizes enlightenment, truth, Buddha nature,  the cosmos, etc.  “Enso’u” is sometimes associated with a different kanji (円窓)(circular window) to mean that it is a window that reflects one’s own heart.






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清流無間断・Se’iryu’u ni kandan nashi

Se’iryu’u ni kandan nashi

清流無間断  せいりゅうにかんだんなく、
Se’iryu’u ni kandan naku,

碧樹不曾凋  へきじゅかつてしぼまず。
Hekiju katsute shibomazu.

清らかな水はさらさらと絶える事なく流れ、また常緑樹はいつも青々として凋む事なくみどりを保つ、とされています。英語の「A rolling stone gathers no moss(転石苔を生ぜず)」の一意のごとく、常に活動するものは新鮮さを持ち続ける、という意味だそうです。

Clear water gently runs without ceasing, and evergreens stay green without withering.  Similar to one of the meanings of an English expression, “A rolling stone gathers no moss,” it means that those who are in constant motion retain freshness.


Because of the refreshing imagery of this word, the scroll is often displayed around this season.  However, as a zen word, it also carries a deeper message about the Buddha’s teaching has been passed down from one’s heart to another, from the moment of his enlightenment until now without interruption.


Originally published June 19, 2015

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和敬清寂・Wa Ke’i Se’i Jaku

The scroll’s calligraphy was done by Archbishop Nitten Ishida who in 1930 founded the San Francisco Nichiren temple.

About Wa-Ke’i-Se’i-Jaku:

It is a word that represents the principles  of chanoyu.  According to a tea-related writing from the mid Edo Period, wa-kei-sei-jaku was pronounced by Juko’o Murata.  However, evidence supporting that view is scarce, and it is apocryphal.  Rather, it is likely that the terms seen in Buddhist sutras, wa-kei (和敬) and sei-jaku (清寂), were widely adapted in the early Edo Period.  “Wa” (和) signifies the host and guests achieving the ultimate level of unity and harmony (ichiza konryu’u)(一座建立), which requires mutual respect and consideration as expressed by the principle of “kei” (敬).  “Sei” (清) relates to the spirit of chanoyu that calls for the purity of heart, as well as the mindfulness for purity that is symbolized by fukusa sabaki (steps of purifying utensils with silk cloth).  “Jaku” (寂) means the state of tranquility as an expression of “wabi-tea” aesthetics that emphasize rustic simplicity and subdued refinement.



[茶の湯]の理念をあらわした言葉。江戸時代中期の茶書によると,和敬清寂の語を唱えたのは村田珠光であるとされるが —,その根拠は薄弱で,伝説にすぎないであろう。むしろ,仏典にみえる〈和敬〉〈清寂〉の語を転用し,江戸時代初期から広く使われだした言葉と思われる。和は亭主と客が和合し,茶会において一座建立が果たされることを指し,互いの思いやりが敬という理念に表されている。清は心の清らかさと同時に袱紗さばきに象徴される清めの意識にも通ずる[茶の湯]の心であり,寂は閑寂枯淡の美ともいうべきわび茶の美意識を示して心静かな姿を意味している。

Originally posted May 7, 2014