Hong Kong LEI 2015年 11月15日 号 にて
当協会幹事長の 齋藤 幸子先生が特集されました。
Over 1,200 years ago, tea was introduced into Japan from China as an herbal medicine. It was first brought into Buddhist temples and the court aristocracy exclusively, and later to the warrior leaders. Along the way, the original ceremonial way of drinking tea in temples gradually transformed to entertainment among the high class people. As tea becomes popular in Japan, tools, furnishings, and even a garden outside of the room started to be recognized as a part of tea gatherings. The herbal medicine from China started to develop as a comprehensive culture of tea in Japan. The 16th-century tea master, SEN Rikyu established a new form of tea, influenced by Zen Buddhism. Having witnessed overly luxurious tea gatherings, SEN Rikyu sought simplicity in every corner including architecture, tea utensils, and the way of tea serving. His world of the way of tea, Chado is recognized as the important principle of Japanese tea today.
The Urasenke Tradition of Tea is one of the direct lineages of SEN Rikyu headed by the sixteenth master in Kyoto. The Urasenke Tradition of Tea introduces the Way of Tea to wide public not only in Japan but also in overseas. The oversea branches offer lessons and also act as cultural ambassadors between Japan and the designated areas. Through a bowl of tea, we aim to promote intercultural friendship and understanding. Currently there are 84 official associations spread over 34 different countries outside Japan.
Chado Urasenke Tankokai Hong Kong Association is one of the 84 official oversea associations established in 1997. Over the 15 years, a small group with just over 10 members has now grown to register nearly 80 members both from Hong Kong and Japan. We are also glad that people in Hong Kong are increasingly interested in learning Chado. Now almost 40% of our members are Hong Kong’s.
In Hong Kong, we participate in various cultural events to share the joy of tea drinking with people here. On regular basis, we actively take part in monthly tea gathering demonstrations organized by the Consulate-General of Japan in Hong Kong. We also work closely with cultural and educational institutions to demonstrate tea serving in various occasions. Through these activities, we aim to introduce Chado to the Hong Kong public, as well as to share the heart of hospitality, appreciation of the seasonal blessings from the nature.
For our tea lessons, we gather at our newly erected tearoom in the City University of Hong Kong. In addition to weekly lessons, we also organize seasonal tea functions called Chaji (茶事/Chaji), Chado’s important festive events such as the rite of switching to a winter furnace (炉開き/Robiraki) and the first tea gathering in the New Year (初釜/Hatsugama), and workshops with instructors from Junior College of Urasenke Way of Tea, Tianjin University of Commerce in China.