This tea ceremony set includes a cast iron teapot, a hishaku (bamboo ladle), a sasara (whisk), and a ceramic chawan (tea bowl). This small teapot is decorated in relief on the sides with a landscape image featuring a temple, trees, and a stupa on one side. On the other side is an inscription in Japanese with a rectangular seal shape near the spout. The base is slightly narrower than the sides at the widest point. The kettle has a fixed handle and a removable lid with a red seal/sticker on the inside. A separate metal tea strainer can be inserted into the pot for brewing. This bamboo ladle (hishaku) is intended for scooping water for Japanese tea. The node of the bamboo stalk forms the bowl of ladle. A narrow slit for the handle is cut into the bowl. The handle can be removed; the curve of the handle secures it in the slit of the ladle's bowl. This small bamboo tea whisk (sasara) is for making types of Japanese green tea. This small ceramic chawan is a reddish/brown color with white and black/gray marks due to glazing. The shape is round but slightly irregular in spots, allowing the glaze to pool and add to the decorative effect and the sense of wabi-sabi. There is a small circlar foot at the base of tea bowl with angled sides of the base tapering to the sides of the bowl.
The tea ceremony is a tea-making ritual from Japan (and practiced less frequently in China and Korea). At a very basic level, tea ceremonies are a formalized way of making a hot drink, through a process that has been refined to yield the best taste. In Japanese, the tea ceremony is referred to as the chado, literally "the Way of Tea," or cha-no-yu ("tea water"). In keeping with this Way of Tea, in the ceremony, tea essentially becomes more than just a drink: the tea ceremony is understood and practiced to foster harmony in humanity and with nature, and to discipline the mind, quiet the heart, and attain the purity of enlightenment.
The term wabi-sabi derives from Zen Buddhism and is often used when speaking of the ritual of the tea ceremony. Difficult to translate literally, wabi may be said to mean "without decoration or visible luxury," while sabi connotes "old and atmospheric." In essence, the term embodies a sense of beauty in the imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It derives in part from the Buddhist concept of impermanence--a belief that nothing (not even the self) is fixed, and therefore that attachment leads to only suffering. The aesthetic of wabi-sabi often includes: asymmetry, roughness, simplicity, austerity, and an appreciation of natural qualities/the effects of natural processes.