Monday, June 6, 2011


“The art of tea Way consists simply of boiling water, preparing tea and drinking it.” Sen (No) Rikyu (1522-1591)

It may sound rather niave, but I have long been fascinated with Rikyu’s assessment of the tea ceremony. Not since Julius Ceaser’s commentary, “Vini, Vidi, Vici” has a statement been so simple and to the point though in the case of Rikyu, the actual accomplishment of tea is anything but simplicity. With all of the formality, aesthetics and the grace and posture involved in chanoyu, the art is the absolute definition of the “complexity of simplicity”. In the end, like a great chawan, the art is to make it look simple and uncontrived. It is this simple “Way” as Rikyu puts it,that can take a lifetime.