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Ikebana (Japanese style flower arrangement)

The classes are scheduled Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 11:30am, at Kent Florist in Paddington Brisbane, $60 (flowers and a vase are provided.)

Please make your reservation at least 3 days beforehand.
07-3368-2609


 
Blog Welcome to the Kent Florist blog, where Mikiko writes about Japanese culture and Brisbane life with flowers

Miyamoto Musashi Dokkodo

2013-11-20 at 16:43PM by Mikiko

In modern days, we have many choices to become any profession. Just we need to do is getting education and test(certificate). So our aim is tend to get the profession whatever we choose. For that, we study hard and do the best. But after we get the profession, where is our aim going? Making lots of money? Having good family and nice house?
What kind of person we become to be is the right aim for children to have, not what kind of profession we get.
In feudal society, we have status system in Japan. It was before Meiji Restoration 1867. Then, Japan was far behind from other western countries about economy and technology.
If we were born in Samurai family which is highest class in the system, we have no choice, have to live as Samurai in our whole life, in the warrior class even we don't like fighting.
Everyone in Samurai class try to become a great Samurai. That is the aim. To be great Samurai, they train Kendo(swordsmanship) hard to develop their physical strength, and practice Zen and Tea ceremony to develop their mental strength. Their aim is to become ideal Samurai. As a result, their willpower grew enough to do Harakiri(Seppuku) to justify themselves or to protect others..
We use the phrase "Hara ga Tatsuiabdomen stands up)"which means "get mad", "Haraguroi(black abdomen)" which means "evil spirit", "Hara wo watte hanasu(spilit abdomen up)"which means "talk honestly".  Japanese consider our mind and spirit are situated in abdomen. That is why we prove innocence to show others inside of abdomen by Harakiri.   

Samurai who lost masters are classfied Ronin. Musashi Miyamoto is well known as Ronin.
He did not have a master. He had a great sword master as his father, but left home at his age 8. It is his choice to isolate himself from society.
The Go Rin No Sho he imparted with all of his samurai martial arts. The Dokkōdō contains his very own soul.

Lines of Wisdom

The Dokkōdō means "The Path of Aloneness" or "The Way to be Followed Alone" . Musashi wrote this work a week before his death. It is 21 lines long, each line containing a different idea one would live by.
  1. Accept Everything Just The Way It Is.
    Beautiful advice. Rather than worry or fret about what's going on around you, accept it. The time you've spent dwelling on it is better spent improving yourself.
  2. Do Not Seek Pleasure For It's Own Sake.
    I've seen many men not heed this warning; just hit the lobby at MGM. Anyone who has lived a few years understand the pains of losing friends to addictions and watching the problems that come with them. If it makes you happy; go for it. Just make sure that when the feeling fades you're a couple steps farther ahead.
  3. Do Not, Under Any Circumstances, Depend On A Partial Feeling.
    You must be sure of where you put your foot before you step. The meaning here is not to get confused, to keep your head clear, and only act when you're certain.
  4. Think Lightly Of Yourself And Deeply Of The World.
    Being humble. How are you to hear wisdom if you only hear yourself? If you only walk around with eyes for yourself, you'll miss the details of the world around you. Paying attention to the world let's you better appreciate the results of your actions, as well as giving you insight into things you would otherwise miss.
  5. Be Detached From Desire Your Whole Life Long.
    If you spend your life chasing a dream you may be running forever. Live your life to be content, have goals but don't let them rule you. Don't dwell on what others have when you can make your own.
  6. Do Not Regret What You Have Done.
    Understand your actions. If you disprove of how you are, don't constantly regret the past and be bitter. Work to understand yourself, put it past you, and live your life how you should.        7. Never Be Jealous.                                                                                                    It's a waste of time. Spend your energy productively. All that time scheming could achieve a lot of other things.
    8. Never Let Yourself Be Saddened By A Separation.
    Just by living life people will come and go. It's not the distance that matters but how you remember them. Keep them close to your heart and they are always living in your footsteps.
    9. Resentment And Complaint Are Appropriate Neither For Oneself Nor Others.
    Better to focus your energy on bettering yourself or them then causing useless grief. Pissing and moaning at the world doesn't make it spin faster.
    10. Do Not Let Yourself Be Guided By The Feeling Of Lust Or Love.
    Act with respect to yourself. Love will come and go, Don't do something for someone you wouldn't do for yourself. Don't burn a bridge you've spent years building.
    11. In All Things Have No Preferences.
    Have an open mind, be ready to try all things and desire none.If you always act a certain way you will never experience anything new.
    12. Be Indifferent To Where You Live.
    Living is living. If your unhappy with where you are, move, but in time you'll realize it's not where you live but how you live. A palace or a parking garage; be happy of shelter and warmth.
    13. Do Not Pursue The Taste Of Good Food.
    You can see this in evidence today. Eat for nourishment and eat to be full. Living the life of a ronin Mushashi learned the value of appreciating a full stomache. A taste for good food can be as harmful as any addiction.
    14. Do Not Hold On To Possessions You No Longer Need.
    If it no longer benefits with you, part with it freely. Give it to someone who can appreciate it. It's easy to get a bunch of junk that will just weigh you down. Have a yard sale and hit the beach. You'll feel better for it.
    15. Do Not Act Following Customary Beliefs.
    Think and act for yourself. Act how you think you should act not how others say you should. You only have one chance to decide for yourself.
  7. Mushashi fighting against a whale.
    Mushashi fighting against a whale.
    16. Do Not Collect Weapons Or Practice With Weapons Beyond What Is Useful.
    A tribute to his time but apt advice depending on how you apply it. It's better to be a master swordsman than an apprentice in many weapons.
    17. Do Not Fear Death.
    This may be the hardest one for some to do. Easier as the years past for some, harder as they do for others. Everyone dies, Everyone comes to terms differently. The best way to do it is identify what scares you the most about it and work from there.
    18. Do Not Seek To Possess Either Goods Or Fiefs For Your Old Age.
    What good will they do when your gone? You want wine to wet your bones? Apt advice as well, Live usefully and collect what is useful. Don't waste your time when you can spend your time bettering yourself.
    19. Respect Buddha And The Gods Without Counting On Their Help.
    Count on yourself, Don't count on luck or gods to pull you through. Tackle the endeavors you know are within your capabilities. If you pray to them for strength then they will put you in situations to find it.
    20. You May Abandon Your Own Body But You Must Preserve Your Honor.
    Don't do anything you can't live with for the rest of your life. Your actions make you. If you become old and weak, not far from the drink; live still with the actions and character that made men respect you.
    21. Never Stray From The Way.
    If you live a certain way, Either devote yourself wholly to it or cast it aside. If you can't bring yourself to place complete conviction in your actions then why do them?
Duel between Miyomoto Musashi and Tsukahara Bokuden
Duel between Miyomoto Musashi and Tsukahara Bokuden







KENT FLORIST is a Brisbane florist offering a variety of fresh or artificial flower arrangements for business or home display, events and weddings.

Kimono

2013-09-17 at 22:42PM by Mikiko

Kimono

Kimono is a Japanese traditional garment worn by men, women and children. Today, kimono are most often worn by women, and on special occasions. Traditionally, unmarried women wore a style of kimono called ]Furisode with almost floor-length sleeves, on special occasions. Japanese people wear the kimono only at the special occasions, weddings and funerals. And when we perform Japanese tradition  such as tea ceremony,  traditional instruments, traditional dance.  and other very special or very formal occasions. Professional sumo wrestlers are often seen in the kimono because they are required to wear traditional Japanese dress whenever appearing in public.

Kimonos are made of silk, and traditionally made from a single bolt of fabric called a tan. Tan come in standard dimensions—about 14 inches wide and 12½ yards longand the entire bolt is used to make one kimono. The picture pattern is drawn by professional artist by hand. No printed pattern is allowed in expensive Kimono.

A woman's kimono may easily exceed US$10,000; a complete kimono outfit, with kimono, undergarments, obi, ties, socks, sandals, and accessories, can exceed US$20,000. A single obi may cost several thousand dollars. However, most kimonos owned by kimono hobbyists or by practitioners of traditional arts are far less expensive.

In Japanese good family, parents buy many Kimonos for their daughter before her wedding. It is one of our tradition. They are for summer, winter, for wedding, funerals, for going out traditional events, It may cost between $50,000 and 100,000. The daughter will go to Kitsuke school to learn how to wear Kimono. And it costs extra to learn it.

I oersonally think that we should keep this tradition. If we keep spending money for these traditional clothes, the artisans can maintain their traditional skills. It is very important that we should keep active our traditional culture which has been kept for thousands years to respect our ancestors.  





KENT FLORIST is a Brisbane florist offering a variety of fresh or artificial flower arrangements for business or home display, events and weddings.

The spirit of Martial Art

2013-08-26 at 11:37AM by Mikiko

Martial art is a sport in which the objective is not simply to defeat your opponent, but also to learn courtesy and train your own mind. It is important to shoe respect not only to your teachers, but also to your opponents. In fact, all Japanese martial arts starts and end with a courteous bow, never display a victory pose.

The famous sword master Miyamoto Musashi wrote in his book,  Five Rings,      The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Perseverance in training is essential. Be better today than you were yesterday, and then strive to become better still. Continue training so as to develop unwavering self-discipline.

Musashi’s philosophy is still very relevant in the world of martial art today, where emphasis is placed not just on technical refinement but also on the training of the mind.

In federal times in Europe, the heavy swords of knights were designed to hack with blow away from the swordsman. Western saws and planes all cut with a pushing movement. Meanwhile, the Japanese blades are designed to be used with a pulling movement, just like Katana. It is designed to slice with a pull towards the swordsman. It would seem that pulling is in Japanese DNA, and pushing is in western DNA


KENT FLORIST is a Brisbane florist offering a variety of fresh or artificial flower arrangements for business or home display, events and weddings.

Tea Ceremony

2013-08-24 at 12:40PM by Mikiko

Tea began as a medicine and grew into a beverage, originated in the mountainous region in southern Asia and brought to China and Japan. This powdered tea is used for ceremonial purpose.

Until 12 centry, drinking of tea in Japan was confined to the court aristocracy and Buddhist ceremonies. It became popular among warrior class later. Samurai drunk tea before and after going to war to keep calm and tranquil in their mind.

The principle is Harmony, Respect, Purity and Tranquility.

Senno Rikyu is a well known tea master in the history. In 16th centry, he served great unifier samurai Hideyoshi as a tea master. Rikyu designed tea hut entrance so small and narrow that any Samurai cannot bring arms into tea hut. The special small entrance is called “Nijiriguchi” Everybody had to leave their swords outside of tea hut and crawl into hut regardless the ranks, which is the idea of everyone being humble and equal. Rikyu intend to eliminate the social distinctions and tried to bring peace to his tea hut. Sadly, Rikyu was forced to do Harakiri by Hideyoshi in the end. 

 

 





KENT FLORIST is a Brisbane florist offering a variety of fresh or artificial flower arrangements for business or home display, events and weddings.

Ikebana : Japanese Art of Flower Arrangement.

2013-08-22 at 11:07AM by Mikiko

The first classical styles of Ikebana started in the middle of the fifteenth century; the first students and teachers of Ikebana were Buddhist priests and members.  

It is a time to appreciate things in nature that people often overlook because of their busy lives. One becomes more patient and tolerant of differences, not only in nature, but also in general. Ikebana can inspire one to identify with beauty in all art forms. This is also the time when one feels closeness to nature which provides relaxation for the mind, body, and soul.


KENT FLORIST is a Brisbane florist offering a variety of fresh or artificial flower arrangements for business or home display, events and weddings.

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