Wabi sabi is the Japanese art of finding beauty in imperfection. That statement in itself makes me happy. Observing it is a meditation and a tool for keeping life cool. And whimsicaly creative. I’m playing with it at the moment as I write. It’s proving a nifty little tool!

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Image by tamara lichtenstein

Wabi stems from the word wa, which refers to harmony, peace, tranquility and balance. Sabi, by itself, means “the bloom of time. Through wabi-sabi we learn to embrace our scars, rust, uneven finishes and the “bloom” of time they represent.

I found this post on eco salon about living a wabi sabi life: “Wabi-sabi is flea markets, not warehouse stores; aged wood, not Pergo; rice paper, not glass. It celebrates cracks and crevices and all the other marks that time, weather, and loving use leave behind.”

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Ways to get wabi sabi with it today?

  • pick some flowers from the side of the road and play with them until you find a nicely discordant arrangment. Stick em in a jam jar.
  • take 2 or 3 old toys or heirlooms you’ve hung onto, stored in a box, and arrange them on the mantlepeice.
  • make a “still life salad”I’ve been collecting herbs from the garden and arranging them on a plate and putting random, favourite ingredients from the fridge that need to be eaten on top. To see how the flavours mix. Anchovies and thyme. Shitake mushrooms cooked in butter on sage. A mound of leftover pumpkin mash with roast cashews.
  • This from ecosalon: “Focus on what you drink your coffee or tea out of in the morning. If it’s a cup that you picked up that has advertising on it, try to find something that you can really appreciate that’s kind of heavy in the hand, like handmade pottery that you interact with and use everyday.”

“Anything that you interact with on a regular basis you want to have soul.”

Being wabi sabi is mostly about getting still and appreciative with the life around us. Shutting off the nagging pull of perfection-seeking. And observing what is. The process of doing this gets me into a lovely focussed space. It’s meditative, it feels special and true.

But most importantly it drives us down, down, down, into ourselves to a space where little flourishes of creativity emerge. Creativity takes practice. Getting wabi sabi with life is a nice way to get the hours up!

This is all. As you were. Be well today. xx

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