It's been almost 2 months since we welcomed the new year. After hectic December (in Japan December is said to be the busiest month in a year as we wrote on this blog) and the hustle-bustle days in January, then February. Now that Valentine's day has totally become a part of Japanese culture, February becomes another shopping month for that event in Japan too. However in the light of original Japanese traditional customs, there's no major events in February.
In this month we are supposed to spend peace and quiet before "Sakura" cherry blossom season when many people look forward to. We are always busy and hurried along by any kind of celebrations, and the marketing battles on the coattails of those. That is also part of fun and delight, but it also could be great to have an opportunity to face yourself peace and quiet at least once a year soon after we welcomed the new year.
The other day in the tea room at my regular tea ceremony lesson, my teacher introduced some "Zen" word on the wall scroll written "心静茶味香". This means if you clear your mind of unnecessary thoughts and then serenely enjoy a cup of tea, the taste is clear and fresh. The taste and flavour of a cup of tea is depending on a state of mind.
What if we put this word into our daily life?
We all have got caught up in our everyday life. Always keep running without stopping in the middle of haste. Things not always work out as we expected, and then we get upset about each thing and stress out.
In the sprit of the tea ceremony, we try to avoid artificial/intentional things and accept thing as it is. By accepting what accidentally occurs, we try to enjoy and cherish what comes your way as "scenery". The scenery allows us to discover something new about yourself and also tells us a new prospective or approach to the things.
This lesson sounds quite a common but it's actually pretty hard to incorporate into our daily life. It is not easy to keep this lesson in mind all the time, but why don't we try to stop think twice then we give ourselves room for the unexpected and enjoy different scenery in your sight?
Where does that "room" come from?
I guess it is from silence. When you stay away from the midst of daily haste, tone down restlessness and quiet your mind. Having those spare time leads you to have room to enjoy different scenery.
Tiny little things that you have always taken for granted or barely even noticed becomes to strikes you as a joy or delight. Time claws along provides the ultimate pleasure for me.
The time in the tea room is definitely essential to my weekly routine. That is very precious moment when I can feel stillness in the midst of my haste. Without that lesson, I would have spent this month hassle-bustle as usual.