though we meet daily
every time is the first time
each moment finite
haiku and photo by M. Nakazato LaFreniere
一期一会 Ichi-go, Ichi-e is a tea ceremony maxim which translates literally to One Time, One Meeting. It means that even though you have met someone many times, each time you meet is a new meeting because each moment is new and cannot be repeated. This moment, this meeting cannot happen again so it’s important to pay attention to each other, be respectful and to care for each other and what you are doing together. This applies to everyone and everything. No moment comes again.
We take each other for granted. We walk our neighborhoods, going through our routines, taking everything for granted and forgetting that this moment right now cannot happen again. When I have a camera, it opens my eyes. Suddenly when I walk through my neighborhood, it is a different place. The tree I pass everyday is suddenly filled with movement, shadows and colors I have not seen before. The camera teaches me to see.
Living fresh, living in the moment is hard. I take the people around me for granted, often forgetting to treat them as precious. It’s easy to say or do something that one would never say to a stranger we’re meeting for the first time.
If we treated friends and family as if we are meeting for the first time and they had our total attention, and what we are doing together has our focus without our thoughts sliding away to something in the future or past, something else we want to do or did; how different would the interaction be? Would we be kinder? More thoughtful? Learn something about someone we’ve known for years that we never knew before?
The Book of Tea by Kakuzo Okakura
Tea Ceremony books on Amazon. I love the Book of Tea by Kakuzo Okakura. Takako, who studied tea, gave it to me in when I was teaching English in Japan in 1989. Love that book.
Book of Tea by Kakuzo Okakura
The Japanese Tea Ceremony: Cha-No-Yu
Tea Ceremony by Seno Tanaka
Chado – The Way of Tea A Japanese Tea Master’s Almanac
by Sasaki Sanmi
I’ve been accepted as an Amazon affiliate. Last month I got my first “buy”. Haven’t gotten a second one yet. Still I’m happy. The first buy means they’ll review your site and officially accept you and I got accepted! Now, I’ll usually get a percentage if someone buys something by clicking a link — for books it’s 4.5%. Amazon disclosure: “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.”