Tenkara Grasshopper Central

Wabi-sabi thoughts

Wabi-sabi thoughts

by January 5, 2012 3 comments

Recently I posted on the concept of wabi-sabi and I felt like I wanted to elaborate on things after the recent violation of my personal space by some karmically uncool bum(s).

I was thinking last night how angry I was by someone coming into our home uninvited and taking what was not theirs including items that had very little monetary value but more the intrinsic personal value such as my grandfather’s watch.

I was mulling this over all night while I was laying in bed and came to the conclusion that yes I felt violated but what mattered more was that both Elizabeth and our roomie Kasey were OK. I don’t know what I would have done had something happened to them. Well I do and I can tell you things would have been extremely ugly to say the least.

I have come to the conclusion that stuff is really just stuff and that things can be replaced but in the spirit of wabi-sabi I can do without and that not having an item doesn’t change who I am one iota. Yes it hurts to lose something of value either emotionally or financially but we can recover.

Having gone fishing with Karel on Monday helped me to come to a few conclusions as well before my home was burglarized.

Standing in the South Platte, with Karel up the river from me, I watched him casting across the water so some unseen hole and saw the beauty of motion and lack of unneeded movement. Karel epitomized to me the quintessential Tenkara fisherman out fishing in hopes of catching a fish. What I found the most amazing is that he exuded and air of relaxation and confidence that you seldom see on a river these days.

I was greatly impressed by the fact that no fish were caught but neither one of us seemed terribly bothered by the fact that we had been skunked. Ok, so we caught a few floating ice chunks and Karel scared a few fish but that happens to the best of them. Yes, Karel it does!

After watching Karel for a while I continued my fishing and tried to focus on my casting and targeting different spots around me. I was aiming at one whole in particular that looked promising from my vantage point. As I was casting to it, I experienced an amazing sense of calm when I hit the hole as I planned.  I was truly amazed that I felt happy but not elated by my placement of my fly. I watched the fly float down the river  to the end of the drift of my line. It was at the end of the drift that I got a sense of why I enjoy fishing Tenkara.

It is the beauty of the technique and the overall simplicity that occurs while fishing Tenkara that I live for when I am holding my Tenkara rod. I also realized that I was carrying the smallest amount of gear necessary for a day on the river. It was the most liberating experience being able to do what I love without a lot of extra stuff include emotional stress or angst.

I look forward to more experiences like this in the future and hope that I can share my experiences with more people not just online but in person on the river or whatever body of water I might find. I hope that I have not bored any of you with this but I felt like this was the best way to express my feelings right now. Please feel free to share your own personal thought on what wabi-sabi means to you. And if you are not a fisherman but are reading this blog for some reason please feel free to join in the conversation as well.

When the grasshopper is ready his abilities will awaken.

Photo credit: Dean Hochman via Foter.com / CC BY

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3 Comments so far

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  1. Graham Moran
    #1 Graham Moran 12 January, 2012, 03:30

    Yes I agree with you and I think that is what I was trying to say when I wrote this.

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  2. Tenkara USA
    #2 Tenkara USA 12 January, 2012, 01:22

    Very interesting post. I think there is an intriguing parallel between losing stuff and not taking a trout. Can't put my finger on it right now, but something like we can't lose what is not ours and nothing is permanent.
    I love the idea of having nothing and letting go of everything, but man, is that hard to do. And, it's also hard to have stuff and have to worry about it!

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  3. goneflyfishing
    #3 goneflyfishing 5 January, 2012, 03:27

    Graham, I feel terrible for what has happened to you. The loss of objects that are dear to you is tragic and the feeling of being violated unsettling. I am also looking forward for another trip soon, fish or no fish. And maybe the only ice will be the one in our drinks.

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