TeaLife Audio – Episode 65 – Gomei

– Marius
– Aaron
– Adam
– Anthony

Translation 1:
The rule is to set the winter kettle [so its lip is] six to seven bu (approx. 2 cm) higher than the ro frame.

Translation 2, by Adam:
In the colder months
Set the kama so its mouth
Rests higher than the
Hearth frame by six or seven bu
Learn this well at practice

Main Topic: Gomei

Information Referenced:
Book: Braiding Sweetgrass



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  1. Thank you for this work which is very helpful for me as I live far from a centre of tea studies. Upon listening to this episode #65, I thought it might be possible to participate. In particular, you discussed not changing the gomei for particular objects so I expected to hear about the creative practise of preparing a gomei for the chashaku during each lesson. I was encouraged to do this in my lessons and it seemed like a great way to develop my Canadian tea mind. It was and remains a very difficult challenge but greatly facilitated by internet information like the wiki.chado.no/Gomei! It would be interesting to know if this creative activity is common. Where I live, we can remember the loon song, cracked ice and snow diamonds.

  2. I like the idea discussed in this episode of an abbreviated sumi temae in cases where a standard sumi temae can’t be done. I’m curious, would you use a sumitori to carry in the kogo, kan, haboki, and hibashi? If so, would you include charcoal in the sumitori (even though it won’t be used)?

  3. When I was first thinking of this I imagined using the entire sumitori. As you need many of the items in the sumitori. I would probably even put the sumi into the sumitori, so that it looks the propper way, and do sumi temae but skip past all the moves connected to sumi or ash (unless you have your heater element surrounded by ash that is)

    Anthony, how is your teacher doing this?

  4. When doing this with Allan Sensei we have not been using sumi inside the sumitori. Though I normally wear kimono, we practiced this as if you had no kimono to put the kami-kama-shiki into the sumitori. So we had the kami-kama-shiki flat down in the sumitori with the kogo on top of it and the kan, hibashi and haboki in the usual place. Now that I am thinking about it, not only to solve not being in kimono and having no place for the kami-kama-shiki, but it is also nice so you have a place for the kogo, just as it would be in the tokonoma. Otherwise it feels like you’d need at least the one piece of sumi to place the kogo on. This is good motivation for me to really document the procedure the next time we do it at class.

    One problem I’d love to solve is how if you put the incense in the wrong place on the heater it can flame up or not really heat/burn. I wonder how putting the Silver-lined Mica Sheet gin-yō that is used in incense appreciation onto the heater and then the ko on top of that would work. Any other ideas or recommendations on where to put the ko? But maybe just as with charcoal, this is a nice random variable in the tea?

  5. Placement of the ko will change a lot with the type of heater that you have. On my infra read the only place I can put it without burning it is next to the gotoku leaning up agains one of the “legs,” but on my regular heater I can put it ontop.

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