Chado Urasenke Tankokai- Melbourne Autumn Tea gathering report
Chado (literally: ‘The Way of Tea’) is a quintessential representation of Japanese philosophy and culture. While many are familiar with the Japanese ‘tea ceremony’ – the art of preparing, serving and enjoying green tea (matcha) – the rituals and significance of Chado run much deeper.
At the core of Chado are the four principles of ‘Wa-Kei-Sei-Jaku’…
和 敬 清 寂
… meaning Harmony, Respect, Purity, and Tranquillity.
On April 22 this year guests were treated to a wonderful example of the art of Chado at the Autumn Tea Gathering conducted by the Chado Urasenke Tankokai Melbourne Association.
Urasenke is one of the main Chado schools of Japan, and the Melbourne Chapter is one of many around the world actively practicing this peaceful and beautiful Japanese art form.
Chado embodies many aspects of Japanese culture, foremost of which is a deeply heartfelt expression of the Japanese spirit of hospitality.
Under the direction and guidance of Ms Yuko Jensen, Urasenke Melbourne put on a splendid performance and display true to this spirit.
In their beautiful kimono, the graceful friendliness of the Urasenke ladies provided an atmosphere of warmth and generosity throughout the ceremony. The venue itself was suitably peaceful - meticulously presented with autumn-themed flower arrangements (ikebana), Japanese artwork and scrolls, and featuring a traditional Chabako Set by Unryuan Kitayama Tatsuo, from the Pauline Gandel Collection of Japanese Lacquer works.
Special guests included the Consul General of Japan to Melbourne, Mr. Kazuyoshi Matsunaga, and the President of the Victorian State Legislative Council, the Hon. Bruce Atkinson.
Participants enjoyed a fascinating demonstration of the traditional practice of preparing and serving matcha, and learned how to appreciate and enjoy the tea served in bowls of exquisite pottery and with accompanying sweet (Okashi).
This was followed by a sumptuous traditional Japanese meal, presented with beautiful table arrangements showcasing a fine selection of Japanese delicacies.
The Autumn Tea Gathering in Melbourne was truly a memorable reflection of the depth of Japanese culture, the tireless dedication of the Urasenke team to “the Way of Tea”, and the spirit of peace and beauty that it engenders.