Health & Wellness

Wabi-Sabi: The Art of Wisdom

“Wabi-sabi teaches us to be content with less in a way that feels like more. Less stuff, more soul. Less hustle, more ease. Less chaos, more calm. Less complexity, more clarity. Less judgment, more forgiveness. Less resistance, more resilience. Less bravado, more truth. Less control, more surrender. Less head, more heart.”

Beth Kempton


Wabi Sabi: Japanese Wisdom for a Perfectly Imperfect Life

Wabi-Sabi is an interesting aesthetic tradition born in Japan. This aesthetic is best known as an understanding of the imperfections in the world and a love for capturing those imperfections to view them with wonder and adoration. But where does Wabi-sabi originate from and why is it so important to countless people throughout the world? Let’s dive into the history and power of wabi-sabi together.

Wabi-Sabi: Lifestyle and Origins.

Wabi-sabi has its origins in Zen Buddhism and has been a tradition in Japan for centuries. It engages and connects us with the aesthetics of simplicity and imperfection. Our current reality is that perfection is a burden that carries immense pressure, always thinking others are more beautiful, more intelligent, lucky, courageous, and worthy. Wabi-sabi is a lifestyle reset, to constantly search for the beauty in imperfection, and the inconspicuous. 

That is the natural cycle of life, one well affirmed in the study of the mycelium, and plant life. It reminds us that all things including us and life itself, are impermanent, incomplete, and imperfect. Wabi-sabi accepts the natural cycle of growth, decay, and death, reminding us that everything has a process of emerging and aging. It honors the often unnoticed beauty that comes with appreciating the simple joy of quiet observation. 

From this understanding that wabi-sabi is an overall love for the world around that is and will remain imperfect. the idea of striving for perfection is in fact disregarded within the scope of wabi-sabi. Instead, we should strive for imperfection, because that is where true beauty lies.

Wabi-Sabi in YOUR Life

The application of wabi-sabi in one’s life should be inspired by the world we see around us. It will stimulate more desire for transparency in understanding the sources of our food, the clay used for our tabletop, the wax for our candles, the fabric for our clothes, even the essences for our fragrances, and the ingredients for our medicines. 

Wabi-Sabi appreciates the fermentation that heals our liver, the bruises on a banana, and the taste of the fruit when too ripe. Can you imagine this perspective blossoming in what we choose to surround ourselves with and rekindled in your heart?

Apply wabi-sabi aesthetics throughout your life by simply allowing imperfects to live and let be. Don’t worry if the cake you’ve baked is a little lopsided- that’s just a part of life! Decorate it as you and eat it with friends. The point of this traditional aesthetic is to stop relying so hard on your life being perfect because perfection is impossible to achieve. Be happy with what you can achieve, perfect or not, and you will find happiness has come to you. 

To change everything, we need everyone.

To continue your path towards wisdom and enlightenment, consider checking out The Path to Joy, a guided meditation class that is sure to brighten your life!

Published by
The Alchemist's Kitchen

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