Jul 23, 2012

Obonfest at Oregon Buddhist Temple

Obon is an annual Buddhist event for commemorating one's ancestors. It is believed that each year during obon, the ancestors' spirits return to this world in order to visit their relatives.

Traditionally, lanterns are hung in front of houses to guide the ancestors' spirits, obon dances (bon odori) are performed, graves are visited and food offerings are made at house altars and temples. 

At the end of Obon, floating lanterns are put into rivers, lakes and seas in order to guide the spirits back into their world. The customs followed vary strongly from region to region. 

Oregon Buddhist Temple will be celebrating Obon on Saturday August 4, 2012.  The program gets underway at 3:00 pm until 9:pm.  Obondori dancing starts at approximately 6:30. Admission is free.

Location: 3720 SE 34th Ave, Portland, OR 97202

Join us for food, gifts, entertainment and dancing. This year's Obonfest features -- 
Food items: yakisoba, yakiniku, yakitori, shave ice, manju, chirashi sushi, beer garden, soft drinks, Spam musubi

Program: Tanuki Taiko, Portland Taiko*, Martial Arts Demonstration, Temple Talks, Bon Odori (public dance)

Vendors: Michiko Selby (Oshie art using chiyogami paper), Miwa McCree (massage), Kaori Oya (Shiatsu massage), Hiroshi Ogawa (Japanese Pottery), Margie Yap from Sweet Persimmon (handmade purses and meditation products), Karen Fullerton (notecards and art), Kinokuniya Bookstore (Japanese books, music, misc items) Others: Omiyage shop, T-shirt sale, children's corner, raffle

I will be there with a booth to sell handbags, meditation seats, incense, matcha, and basic tea ceremony utensils. And I tell you, the spam musubi can't be beat.

Jul 18, 2012

Presentation at the Portland Japanese Garden

Issoan Tea School will be presenting Chado, the Way of  Tea at the Portland Japanese Garden this Saturday, July 21st at 1 and 2 pm.

Please join us for a presentation of the Tea Ceremony at Kashintei, the "Flower heart arbor" tea house at the Portland Japanese Garden.  The presentat6ion is free with admission to the garden.

Chado 茶道, the Way of Tea, is the practice of preparing, serving, and drinking Tea. Since the 15th century, it has been a study in preparing a bowl of powdered green tea (matcha 抹茶) as well as incorporating many of the arts of Japan. This elegant yet simple practice reflects the philosophy of the four principles of Tea:

Harmony: Wa
Respect: Kei
Purity: Sei
Tranquility: Jaku

Where: Portland Japanese Garden, 611 SW Kingston Ave, Portland, Oregon 97205
When:  Saturday, July 21, 2012 at 1 and 2 pm
For more information: Chado the way of Tea, (503) 223-1321

Jul 16, 2012

Tanabata Chakai

A wonderful day of tea Saturday at the Issoan Tea School.  Students celebrated the Star Festival with a chakai put on the advanced class who invited the new students who had never attended a chakai before.

We went through the planning process from choosing a theme, utensils, poetic names, hand made invitations to making sweets.

Students arrived at the school very early to clean everything, top to bottom tea room, mizuya, machiai and walkway outside.

They washed and dried all the utensils and trays and bowls for the light meal.  We cooked the food and arranged the trays.

The tea room and mizuya were then set up and we rehearsed the order of the gathering.

Then everyone changed into kimono and the guests began to arrive.  Even though it was a lot of work, I think everyone had a good time.

Thank you guests and thank you hosts for a wonderful tea day.