'Wabi-sabi:' The Japanese philosophy of embracing imperfectionism

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By Lucy Dayman

In a time of perfectly curated social media feeds, endless barrages of new products, services, and people who can help you become the better you, it’s hard to take a step back and appreciate what we have. How can we be satisfied with what we’ve got if we’re always wanting what’s unattainable? Well, maybe the traditional Japanese ideologies of wabi-sabi can help.

The concept of wabi-sabi, despite being wide and almost impossible to distill, can easily be applied simply to moments of everyday life. Wabi-sabi stretches to everything from the aesthetic, to temples, to classic gardens, and to ceramics — but we’re going to leave that for another time. For now, let’s look at wabi-sabi as lens with which we can use to focus on our everyday life.

What is wabi-sabi?

If you’ve come across the term wabi-sabi, chances are it was in relation to Japanese aesthetics, that old teacup worn rugged from years of tea ceremonies. A great example of wabi-sabi is the art of kintsugi, where cracked pottery is filled with gold dusted lacquer as a way to showcase the beauty of its age and damage rather than hiding it.

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© Savvy Tokyo

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Click Here... Been there done that. Not my WabiSabi of life choice.

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