When doing the temae Chaire Kazari, while the chaire is displayed in the tokonoma, is there tea in the chaire?

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When doing the temae Chaire Kazari, while the chaire is displayed in the tokonoma, is there tea in the chaire?

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In one of our Midorikai quizzes, we were presented with this question regarding Chaire Kazari: “How is the shifuku himo tied [when displayed in the tokonoma at the beginning of shoza]?”

The potential answers were:

A. As it would be when there is tea in the chaire

B. As it would be when the chaire is empty (yasume himo)

C. As it would be with a nagao shifuku

D. In a special knot like a butterfly

The correct answer was A (I put B and was marked incorrect). The way the question and the answers are worded, I would have the say the orthodox method is without tea inside.

Chanoyu Quarterly no. 62 also states, when setting up the temaeza after nakadachi, that “The chaire is filled with the proper amount of tea powder, reclothed in its shifuku, and set within the chawan” (page 52).

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In Omotesenke it is the same.

No tea but the knot used is as if full.

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Yes, there should be tea in the chaire.

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No!?!

I’m not sure about this answer, but my thinking is as follows.

During a kuchi-kiri chaji the host will allow the guests to chose which tea they want just prior to starting the kaiseki. At this time the chaire would already be displayed in the tokonoma if you are doing chaire kazari. Since the guest hasn’t chosen the tea yet and the host hasn’t ground the tencha into mattcha yet the chaire can’t be filled. It might be that kuchi-kiri is the exception, but I would still guess that it is the right way. Because of this argument I think the proper way is to not fill it before displaying it.

However, in practical terms I think I would have added the tea before displaying it in the tokonoma. The guests have no (appropriate) way of knowing whether it has tea or not in it, and by having filled it already I remove the possibility of forgetting to fill it when it is moved from tokonoma to its place in-front of mizusashi.

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If we look at the chaire kazari temae, the sequence of the temae is different between Omotesenke and Urasenke. In Omotesenke, the chaire kazari temae happens outside the koicha temae. Guests would ask to see the chaire in display at the shoza 初座, the host has the option to use the same or a different chaire for the koicha temae. In Urasenke, guests ask to see the chaire only at the end of the koicha temae.

Marius : at Kuchi-chiri chaji, would the tsubo (big tea jar) rather be be displayed in the tokonoma at the shoza and that be the kazari mono ?

  • Marius Frøisland
    Chaire Kazari in Urasenke is something the host decide to do because there is a connection between the host and the guest through the chaire. The host then places out the chaire in Tokonoma during the kaiseki, and place chakin, chasen and chashaku on top of the mizusashi and the chaire inside the teabowl infront of the mizusashi for the koicha service while the guests are in the guarden. Since Tsubo Kazari and Chaire Kazari both are special kazari temae in Urasenke, I would assume they are never done together. Also the feeling I get from kuchi-kiri is that this is such a special tea event that no other “specialness” is needed.
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