Chaki (茶器) refers to the collection of various tea utensils used in the traditional Japanese tea ceremony. These meticulously crafted tools play a crucial role in preparing and serving tea, embodying the principles of harmony, respect, purity, and tranquility.
The chaki set typically includes several key items, such as:
- Chawan (茶碗) – Tea Bowl: The chawan is a ceramic bowl used for whisking and serving matcha, the powdered green tea.
- Chasen (茶筅) – Tea Whisk: Made from bamboo, the chasen is used to whisk and froth the matcha, creating a smooth and vibrant tea consistency.
- Chashaku (茶杓) – Tea Scoop: The chashaku is a bamboo scoop used to measure and transfer the matcha powder into the chawan.
- Natsume (棗) – Tea Caddy: The natsume is a small, lidded container traditionally crafted from wood or lacquer. It holds the powdered matcha and is often decorated with intricate designs.
- Kusenaoshi (草瓶押) – Whisk Holder: The kusenaoshi is a stand used to hold and maintain the shape of the chasen when it’s not in use.
- Kensui (建水) – Waste Water Bowl: The kensui is a bowl used to collect wastewater generated during the tea preparation process. It symbolizes cleanliness and serves as a vessel to dispose of used tea leaves and water.
Each chaki item holds significance in the tea ceremony, contributing to the aesthetics, functionality, and ritualistic nature of the practice. The careful selection and appreciation of these tea utensils are integral to creating a harmonious and memorable tea experience.