Finish the Tea Ceremony Step-by-Step

Announce ending the Tea Ceremony

If Shokyaku asks Teishu to finish, with the Chawan still in the left hand, the right hand is placed on the Tatami and a small bow in recognition of the Shokyaku’s wish is made. Then the Chawan is placed in front of the knees again. Teishu will now properly bow and announce that he or she will finish the tea-ceremony.

Clean the Chasen

To finish, cold water will be ladled into the Chawan with the Hishaku from the Mizusashi. Pick up the Chasen with the right hand, and hold the Chawan with the left. Stir the water in the Chawan gently from the right side down to the left and back. Put the Chasen down facing to the right. Slowly bring it toward the face while turning it. (This is to check whether the Chasen and its tines are clean or not.) Repeat two times, and then gently whisk the water to further clean the Chasen. Place the Chasen next to the Natsume again. Discard the water into the Kensui, place the Fukin in the Chawan, put the Chawan down with the right hand. Place the Chasen in the Chawan.

Cleaning the Chashaku

Remove the Fukusa from the Obi and fold it in order to wipe the Chashaku. Take the Chashaku from the Natsume with the right hand. Hold the Fukusa in the palm of the left hand and place the Chashaku on top, first wipe top and bottom, slide back and wipe the sides. And one more time the top and bottom. Place the Chashaku on the Chawan facing down. Now there might be some Macha green-tea powder stains on the Fukusa, so above the Kensui, gently whipe twice with the right hand. Now the Fukusa can be folded and attached to the Obi. Lift the Chawan with the right hand on from the top of the rim, and then hold it shortly with the left in order to switch position of the right hand to a grip which is more from the side. Place the Chawan in front of the Mizusashi.

Ladle fresh water into the Kama

According to the number of guests to whom tea was served by the Teishu, about the same amount of water has to be returned to the Kama. Let’s assume three guests were served tea, and then usually two scoops of fresh water are ladled from the Mizusashi to the Kama with the Hishaku. When done, place the Hishaku on the Kama again. Now the Mizusashi will not be used anymore, so the lit can be put back. Take the lit with the right hand, and bring it closer to the chest. Grab it with the left hand above the right and turn it horizontally. Hold the ear of the lit and place it on the Mizusashi.

Close the Kama

Pick up the Hishaku again, with the left hand, hold it at chest height so that you can see into the cup of the bamboo-ladle (Kamaeru). With the right hand pick up the Futa of the Kama and place it on the Kama.

Take Kensui back to Mizuya

After the Futa has been placed on the Kama again, the Hishaku is still held in the left hand. Grab it from above with the right hand and pick up the Futa-oki with the left hand. Now, with thumb, index, and middle fingers of the right hand, hold the Futa-oki under the Hishaku. The Hishaku is held horizontally in front of the chest. With the left hand, lift up the Kensui and stand up holding the Kensui at hip height beside the body. The Kensui is considered unclean and is kept out of the guests’ sight for as much as possible. So when holding the Kensui the Teishu will turn anticlockwise in order to not show it to the guests. In front of the door, Teishu sits down diagonally and places the Kensui in front of the knees. The Futa-oki is placed next to the Kensui. The Hishaku is laid on top of the Kensui with the cup of the ladle facing down. The sliding door is opened in two stages again, two-third then one-third. When the door is opened, hold the Kensui, Hishaku, and Futa-oki in the same way again and walk to the Mizuya.

Take Chawan and Natsume to Mizuya

In the same way the Chawan and Natsume were brought into the room, they are now carried back to the Mizuya. Take the Chawan in the left hand and the Natsume with the right. These are high-ranking utensils so turn clockwise when walking to the Mizuya.

Take Mizusashi to Mizuya

Last is the Mizusashi. Kneel down in front of the Mizusashi and pick it up with both hands as low as possible. When outside of the sliding door, turn around and kneel and sit down, place the Mizusashi in front of the knees. Now it’s time to officially part from your guests, so place both hands onto the Tatami and bow thanking the guests for coming. Close the door.


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