Wabi Sabi – the Art of Imperfection

April 8, 2010

Wabi Sabi Vase

Wabi Sabi Vase

Recently I read an interesting article on the  Japanese art of Wabi Sabi.

Have you ever heard about it?

It is a term that symbolizes beauty found in change and imperfection.

Wabi Sabi is an approach to life and art that originated in 16th century Japanese culture.  It symbolizes, on one hand, a recognition of harmony with nature, and on the other, an appreciation of constant state of flux, transience and decay. In fact, the very essence of beauty is to be found in life’s impermanence and the process of metamorphosis.

This philosophy finds beauty in aging, both in things and in people. It encourages us to be content with what we have, rather than to always strive for more. Many of us live in a state of constant dissatisfaction and unhappiness with the way things are right now. But think how liberating it would be to admit that there is no such thing as perfection! This doesn’t mean that we should settle, or not work hard to improve our lot in life. Wabi Sabi is about finding balance and contentment in what we have, at the same time that we strive for discipline, self-control and enlightenment.

Japanese artists often leave imperfections in their art. A delicate fractures in the glaze of a vase, a rough patch on the surface of a bowl, an unexpected brush stroke in an ethereal watercolor. These purposeful blemishes are a vivid reminder that nothing in life is perfect – nor does it need it to be.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Sue April 8, 2010 at 12:37 pm

Liliana,

This zen philosophy resonates with me too.
You would probably enjoy reading this article about life as a gift (see below – hope the link works). The writer also talks about generosity at work & since you also include a lot of tips from your work this ties into that aspect of your blogging too:

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/practicing-generosity.html

Practicing Generosity
Everything we think of as ours, our bodies and minds and all the material things that make up our lives, has been given to us. The air we breathe and …
posted by Marc Lesser Apr 7, 2010 11:59am

I subscribe to this newsletter, which is informative & has articles/advice on varying topics & from reading your entries I think that you might like to subscribe too.

http://www.care2.com/newsletters/

I loved reading your entry about your check-up! It got me right in my heart. You write eloquently & I am glad that you are well. That is a gift to all of us.

Here’s to many healthy years ahead!
Sue

Reply

Liliana April 8, 2010 at 3:25 pm

Sue,
I enjoy hearing from you very much. Thanks for the article, I will read it tonight. It looks like something that I will enjoy.
I have also signed up for the care2 newsletter. Thanks for both.

Also, I appreciate you words of encouragement. I wish you and your family all the best.
Please keep writing.
Liliana

Reply

Liliana April 8, 2010 at 3:26 pm

Sue, I enjoy hearing from you very much. Thanks for the article, I will read it tonight. It looks very much like something that I will enjoy. I have also signed up for the care2 newsletter. Thanks for both.

Also, I appreciate you words of encouragement. I wish you and your family all the best. Please keep writing. Liliana

Reply

Joe Holtzman April 13, 2010 at 12:11 pm

This is well done. So many of us are never content with what we have now. It’s always about something better in the distant future. Accepting imperfection is a critical step we all need to take on the path to happiness.

Reply

Liliana April 13, 2010 at 12:50 pm

Hy Joe,
I agree that we all tend to be way too critical of ourselves and of others. It’s good to stop and pay attention to the beauty of this moment. Hugs to you.

Reply

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