This month at Carpe Diem I’m exploring the “Motherland” of haiku, Japan.
We are studying Japan and discovering some awesome kinds of Arts of Japan.
Ikebana (“arranging flowers”) is the Japanese art of flower arrangement, also known as kado (the “way of flowers”).
The tradition dates back to the 7th century when floral offerings were made at altars.
Later they were placed in the tokonoma alcove of a home.
Ikebana reached its first zenith in the 16th century under the influence of Buddhist tea masters and has grown over the centuries,
with over 1000 different schools in Japan and abroad. The most well-known schools are Ikenobo, Ohara-ryū, and Sōgetsu-ryū.
More than simply putting flowers in a container, Ikebana is a disciplined art form in which nature and humanity are brought together.
Photo Credit Ikebana exhibition
Ikebana is a disciplined art form in which nature and humanity are brought together.
Contrary to the idea of a particolored or multi-colored arrangement of blossoms,
ikebana often emphasises other areas of the plant, such as its stems and leaves, and puts emphasis on shape, line, and form.
The spiritual aspect of Ikebana is considered very important to its practitioners.
Some practitioners feel silence is needed while making Ikebana while others feel this is not necessary.
It is a time to appreciate things in nature that people often overlook because of their busy lives.
This is also the time when one feels the closeness to nature, which provides relaxation for the mind, body, and soul.
The first students and teachers of ikebana were Ikenobo Buddhist priests and members of the Buddhist community.
As time passed, other schools emerged, styles changed, and ikebana became a custom among the whole of Japanese society.
There are many styles of Ikebana – Jiyuka and Rikka are a couple of them.
Jiyuka is a free creative design. It is not confined to flowers; every material can be used.
The Rikka (standing flowers) style was developed as a Buddhist expression of the beauty of landscapes in nature. The key to this style is nine branches that represent elements of nature.
Photo Credit Drawing of a Rikka arrangement.
Tanka based on my study of Ikebana
the art of japan
nature and humanity
spiritual and rewarding