In the West, philosophers write long non-fiction books, often using incomprehensible words
and limit their involvement with the world to lectures and committee meetings.
但在东方 尤其是禅宗派的哲人们 他们写诗
But in the East, and especially in the Zen tradition, philosophers write poems, rake
耙地 朝圣 射箭 在卷轴上写下警世格言 吟诵
gravel, go on pilgrimages, practice archery, write aphorisms on scrolls, chant and, in
而禅宗中最伟大的哲人之一 千利休 则是
the case of one of the very greatest Zen thinkers, Sen no Rikyū, involve themselves in teaching
people how to drink tea in consoling and therapeutic ways.
Sen no Rikyū was born in 1522 in the wealthy seaport of Sakai, near present day Osaka.
Show map of this place.
其父 田中与兵卫 经营鱼问屋(批发) 进行鱼品贸易 他希望
His father, Tanaka Yohyoue, was a warehouse owner who worked in the fish trade and wished
his son to join him in business.
但是 利休却远离商业 转而求索智慧与自我认知之道
But Rikyū turned away from commercial life and went in search of wisdom and self-understanding
instead. He became fascinated by Zen Buddhism, apprenticed himself to a few Masters and took
to a life of wandering the countryside, with few possessions.
Zen Buddhism was founded by traveling monks, who believed that people best could find spiritual
有所壮举才能获得精神上的意义 相反 最好的方式是通过
meaning not by thinking complex thoughts or performing great deeds but by doing (often
全神贯注做日常极简之事 譬如 智者菩提达摩
very simple) things with intense thoughtfulness and concentration. The wise Bodhidharma, for
example, is believed to have stared at a wall for nine years to improve his focus.
Rikyu chose to focus on something that was a little more refreshing than staring at the
品茶 今天他为后人所记住的是 他对茶水品鉴改革做出的贡献
wall: drinking tea. Today we remember him for the contributions he made to the reform
and appreciation of the chanoyu (茶の湯) = Japanese tea ceremony.
It literally means “hot water for tea.” The Japanese had been drinking tea since the
9th century, the practice having been imported from China by merchants and monks. The drink
was considered healthy as well as calming and spiritual.
But it was Rikyū’s achievement to put the tea ceremony on a more rigorous and profound
他那个时代的日本 已经开始注重形象与财富 而利休推崇另一套
The Japan of his era had grown image-conscious and money-focused. Rikyū promoted an alternative
set of values which he termed
一个由”侘”——满足于简朴 和 “寂”——
a compound word combining wabi, or satisfaction with simplicity and austerity, with sabi an
appreciation of the imperfect.
Across fields ranging from architecture to interior design, philosophy to literature,
Rikyū awakened the Japanese a taste for the pared down and the authentic, for the
undecorated and the humble.
His particular focus was the tea ceremony, which Rikyū believed to hold a superlative
potential to promote wabi-sabi.
He made a number of changes to the rituals and aesthetics of the ceremony. He began by
首先 他改革了饮茶仪式发生的空间 之前
revolutionising the space in which the tea ceremony was held. It had grown common for
wealthy people to build extremely elaborate teahouses in prominent public places, where
they served as venues for worldly gatherings and displays of status.
Rikyū now argued that the teahouse should be shrunk to a mere two metres square, that
it should be tucked away in secluded gardens
and that its door should be made deliberately a little too small, so that all who came into
纵然显贵 无不躬身谦卑 以示与人平等
it, even the mightiest, would have to bow and feel equal to others. The idea was to
create a barrier between the teahouse and the world outside.
而通往茶屋的路径 青葱翠碧 奇石堆砌
The very path to the teahouse was to pass around trees and stones, to create a meander
that would help break ties with the ordinary realm.
Properly performed, a tea ceremony was meant to promote what Rikyū termed
wa (和) = harmony
which would emerge as participants rediscovered their connections to nature: in their garden
庭院寒舍 木气清幽 青苔遍布 茶叶飘香
hut, smelling of unvarnished wood, moss and tea leaves, they would be able to feel the
人们侧耳听风 鸟鸣啾啾 恍惚不觉在人间
wind and hear birds outside – and feel at one with the non-human sphere.
Then might come an emotion known as kei (敬) = respect
the fruit of sitting in a confined space with others, and being able to converse with them
free of the pressures and artifice of the social world.
A successful ceremony was to leave its participants with a feeling of
即 “寂” 宁静
jaku (寂) = tranquillity
sei (静) = purity
central concepts in Rikyū’s gentle, calming philosophy.
Rikyū’s prescriptions for the ceremony extended to the instruments employed.
He argued that tea ceremonies shouldn’t rely on expensive or conventionally beautiful
cups or teapots. He liked worn bamboo tea scoops that made a virtue of their age and
bamboo flower vases like this one, which he carved himself.
禅宗认为 万物皆是暂时的因缘和合 不能完美圆满
Because in Zen philosophy, everything is impermanent, imperfect and incomplete, objects that are
利休认为 时光雕刻过器物所留下到偶尔印记 蕴含了一种独特的智慧
themselves marked by time and haphazard marks can, Rikyū suggested, embody a distinct wisdom
and promote it in their users.
It was one of Rikyū’s achievements to take an act which in the West is one of the most
routine and unremarkable activities and imbue it with a solemnity and depth of meaning akin
to a Catholic Mass.
Every aspect of the tea ceremony, from the patient boiling of the water to the measuring
out of green tea powder, was coherently related to Zen’s philosophical tenets about the
谦卑为人的重要性 爱护尊重自然 以及
importance of humility, the need to sympathise with and respect nature, and the sense of
the importance of the transient nature of existence.
It’s open ended where this approach to everyday life may go.
It leaves open the possibility that many actions and daily habits might, with sufficient creative
就能同样变得高尚 重要 有所裨益
imagination, become similarly elevated, important and rewarding in our lives. The point isn’t
so much that we should take part in tea ceremonies, rather that we should make aspects of our
everyday spiritual lives more tangible by allying certain materials and sensuous rituals.
Rikyū reminds us that there is a latent sympathy between big ideas about life and the little
比如某种饮品 杯子 器物 气味——之间有一种潜在的共情
everyday things, such as certain drinks, cups, implements and smells.
These are not cut off from the big themes; they can make those themes more alive for
us. It is the task of philosophy not just to formulate ideas, but also to work out mechanisms
by which they may stick more firmly and viscerally in our minds.