The Flowering Spirit

Filming Cooperation Tessen-kai
Presented by Jiichi.Asami

14, November, 2015
Contents of STORY Photography JAPAN Vol.5:2015 Autumn

Noh is the traditional Japanese performing art.
Founder, Zeami wrote books of esoterica.

One of the genius could change the world.
Noh (Nogaku) is a major form of classical Japanese musical drama that has been performed since the 14th century.
Developed by Kan’ami & his son Zeami, it is the oldest major theatre art still regularly performed today.
Zeami is one of the genius that changed the world.
Flowering Spirit wrote by him that best way of thinking and behavior for the art.
That has been read in the world, many people called origin of the art.
If it is hidden, it is the flower, If it is not hidden, it is not the flower.
There is flower naturally without arguing.
If flower arguing loudly, will be lost worthiness.
How the audience feel stage ?
Value of the flowers are determined by only it.

I feel photographs in the same way, No need to talk about something.
Some photograph told me a lot of emotions , I think it just is all.

I met Zeami about 10 years ago,
I’ve many sympathy, Noh was a theme that take some time.
However threshold that culture had a high of portrait rights issues & such a variety of problems.
Negotiations to difficulties, Also Mr. Asami & Tessenkai agreed after the presentation.
“Japanese culture to the world for 2020”, we had a same vision.
 Repertoire is the story of a warrior named Lady Tomoe.
Coincidentally, my origin is the same family as her.

The monk have come from Kiso, the woman tells them that the warlord Kiso Yoshinaka is enshrined here, and calls upon him to pray.

She requests that the party stay under a pine tree and recite a sutra for the consolation of Yoshinaka mentioning the bond they must have since they’ve come from the same region. The temple bell tolls in the gathering dusk, the sound mingling with the murmur of waves on Lake Biwa.

As loneliness embraces the surroundings, the woman announces that she is ghost and without revealing her identity disappears into the twilight.
A local villager appears.
When questioned by the monk, he reveals that the woman they’ve just met must be the spirit of Yoshinaka’s companion.
He advises them to pray for the lady. The monks proceed to pray for the deceased.
As darkness falls the spirit of Lady Tomoe reappears, and recounts her suffering.
The monks see the lady clad in full battle armor.
The Lady reveals her name and speaks of her resentment since she was a woman she was not permitted to be at Lord Yoshinaka’s side during his final moments.
Her resentment has tied her to this world.

Lady Tomoe desired to die in battle with Yoshinaka, to brandish her bow and pass bravely while achieving a feat to be remembered.
She speaks of her obligation to her lord, and tells the story of his last battle…


I asked to Mr. Asami about point of this stage.
Noh performance set to mask, also mask have a lot of feelings & expressions.
Stage of Lady Tomoe has brave battle scene in stage.
But the point is quiet scene in stage.
Returning to the pine tree, Tomoe discovered Yoshinaka had indeed taken his own life. Lying beside him were his kimono and amulet.
Gathering up these tokens, she bade farewell, but overcome by grief could barely move. Eventually she departed, stopping at the beach of Awazu and cut the belt from her armor, and placed her armor on the ground.
She removed her headdress, and donned the kimono.
Hidden near her breast was Yoshinaka’s short sword.
Wearing kimono and rain hat she escaped to the village of Kiso with tears as her only companion.
Lady Tomoe finishes her story, and begs the monks to pray for her release from the obsession of regret and guilt.


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