Hi everyone, how are you?
As you might have noticed already, the sub-title of this blog is “Inspired by Yamato Gokoro”.
Do you know what does “Yamato Gokoro” mean?
It means the spirituality or character that more or less we Japanese have deep inside of our hearts from ancient times.
It is not too much to say that based on this “Yamato Gokoro”, all the Japanese traditional cultures or arts were created, such as traditional Japanese tea ceremony (SADŌH), flower arrangement (KADŌ, also known as IKEBANA), Japanese manners (REIHŌ), dyeing and weaving (SOME-ORI), the ceramic art (TŌGEI), Japanese poem (HAIKU and WAKA), Japanese musical instruments (WAGAKKI), festivals (MATSURI), Japanese gardens (NIHON-TEIEN), temples and shrines, EDO cultures, Japanese colors, rites of passage, Japanese annual events and of course KIMONO too.
You too maybe glimpse, in each of these, a completed technique and knowledge as well as unwavering policy and pride of Japanese people of old days.
Their relentless pursuits of beauty have been descended generation to generation, creating really amazing and priceless things.
Such strong preference for authenticity might be the basis of the character of Japanese, and the spirit which makes it principle is called “Yamato Gokoro”, I suppose.
So, setting a new category “Yamato Gokoro”, I decided to try to introduce such sensitivity and the view of the world characteristic of Japan by picking up some events or topics from my daily life.
I myself have been always with Japanese traditional cultures and arts since my childhood by the way.
I was leaning KADŌ (Japanese flower arrangement) and SHODŌ (Japanese calligraphy) under my aunt’s instruction when I was a girl, then after grown up, I learnt SADŌ (Japanese tea ceremony).
In SADŌ, I had many opportunities to wear KIMONOs, which woke me up to the wonderfulness of this Japanese traditional clothing, then KIMONOs became my job after discovering furthermore its profundity.
Once started working in the KIMONO field, obviously I had more chances to touch upon the Japanese traditional cultures. I practiced CHIRIMEN-ZAIKU (silk crape crafts) and NIHON-GA (Japanese painting) and also obtained, a couple of years ago, a qualification of instructor for “Japanese manners and protocol” where I learnt demeanor peculiar to Japan including its history and origin.
During this course, you can learn Japanese table manners, conventions at ceremonial occasions, rites of passage, dress code, etc…
Thanks to this experience, I fully understood that “OMOIYARI (a consideration)” for others including deities and divinities is the key element forming the basis of Japanese manners, conventions, proprieties, etiquette and OMOTENASHI (Japanese hospitality).
With all of my knowledge and experiences, in this new category, I will challenge to unveil the essence of Yamato Gokoro.