Kimono Flea Market ICHIROYA's News Letter No. 485



When we asked a young staff to write description of this fukusa, she wrote that she didn't know what this picture means.
Probably it must be same in any countries that youg people don't know well about classics and ancient events.
Young people must know and study more about classics!
How can we overcome the succession of hardships we will face in our lives without wisdom of the classics?

And it may be useful to you Westerners.

A giant jar is placed under the pine tree, and a Chinese boy is groveling. Wave and stream of water are around him. The figure on the left the jar looks happy, and he may be dancing. Another figure is looking into the water surface, which swirls.

Do you know the meaning of this picture?

The bureaucracy of The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare killed many people to protect pharmaceutical companies' interests and the government offices' stature.
Sports coacher inflicted corporal punishment to make his team strong, and made his studen to kill himself.
Businessmen are addicted to win competitive battles with co-workers, and forget the customers' satisfaction.

We hope to let them see and enjoy this fukusa.
This fukusa may be able to open their eyes.

This picture is called "Kame-Wari-No-Zu" ( Picture of a boy breaking the jar).
It is said that the anecdote of Sima Guang, who was Chinese historian, scholar, and high chancellor of the Song Dynasty, jinshi 1038.

In his boyhood, when he was playing with his friends, one boy dropped into the giant jar. The jar was very big and slippy, and the boy couldn't get out of it. He was drowning, but friends were too shaken up to do anything else.
However, Sima Guang picked up a stone, and threw it on the jar.
The jar was broken, and water and the drowning boy ran out, and he was helped.

In the ancient China, giant jar and water had to be very valuable.
Parents and adults had to tell their children strictly, " Never break the jar. Use water carefully."
So most boys couldn't get the idea to break the jar because they were bound by the words.
Only Sima Guang thought that the life of the friend was way valuable than the jar and water, and could take the stone.

Especially here in Japan, there are many people whom I want to show this picture.
They need the courage to break the jar and lost water.
And must remember the most valuable thing to protect.

By the way, I learned this anecdote when I was over 40 years old through antique kimono business.
So I may not have the right to pretend to know all the answers, but anyway, classics and ancient events are wonderful!

Don't you think so?