Kou-dou 香道 (Way of Fragrance)
Koh-dou [香道/こうどう] is one of the Japanese famous traditional art. The Kanji in itself mean: “Way of the Scent”
“Koh-dou” is the art which enjoy the aroma from the fragrant wood. “Kou-dou” is developed with the tea ceremony and the art of flower arrangement in Muromachi period.
How to enjoy “Kou-dou” is that owner start the incense ceremony and then censer(fragrant wood) will pass to the customers. Customers are enjoy the aroma and silence. It has been repopularized during the Edo-Period (1600-1868). There are several types of Koudou. These are either called kumikō, genjikō or monkō and have several minor differences
There are also game elements in “Koh-dou”, like incense-identifying and incense-rating. The reason why we do that is to refine one’s sensitivity and enrich one’s soul. And the game called “Kumi-kou” is to enjoy the classical poem and literary works while scenting the aroma.
What I want to say is that “Kou-dou” is the composition art which includes extensive knowledge of literature, incense utensils and aesthetic recording paper.
In order to perform a good “Koudou” you need a set of tools which are called “Koudougu”(香道具)
These include among others depending on type:
A container which holds the incense 香炉 (Koro) –
ash pressure tool
The manners of “Kou-dou”
1. How to handle the incense burner
After the censer come, place the burner horizontally on your left hand and cup your right hand over the top of the burner, then enjoy the aroma between thumb and forefingers.
2.How to enjoy the aroma of incense
Straighten yourself, keep the burner upright, inhale incense three times to embrace its aroma and exhale incense gently aside.
Keeps a calm mind and helps with relaxing.