Ikebana translates as “living flowers”, meaning to appreciate the life that is, was, or will be in any plant, or part of a plant, from a seed to a whole tree. Another name for this practice is kado, “the way of flowers”.
There are many qualities to learn on this path:
Like a flower opening, the path keeps unfolding, and ikebana students regard it as being a life-long study.
Ikebana in Boulder owes its existence in large part to Chogyam Trungpa, the founder of the Naropa University. He studied ikebana in England with a high-ranking teacher of the Sogetsu school of ikebana and saw it as what he called a “dharma art”: art that can lift the practitioner, the viewer and the environment to a meditative level. In the early 80’s he started Kalapa Ikebana, a society for the practice and appreciation of flower arranging. He realized that there were many dharma arts: chado, “the way of tea”; kyudo, “the way of archery”, etc., and began to invite teachers of these arts to teach at Naropa. The search for a kado teacher led to finding Kyoko Kita, who taught in Boulder from 1983 until her death in 2010. She held the title of “Riji”, the highest rank in the Sogetsu school. She had hundreds of students and was inspiring to the thousands of people who came in contact with her.
Sanghamitra studied with Mrs. Kita from 2002 until 2010 and holds a second Sanyo teaching certificate. In April, 2010 she completed a three day workshop with the Sogetsu headmaster, Akane Teshigahara, in Tokyo. She has participated in the annual Sogetsu Colorado show in Denver for many years. She creates arrangements for the entry table and for the meditation room here at the Osho Boulder Meditation Center.
– Mitra Adams
“Each flower is an invitation, an appointment with god.”
Osho, The Path of Love, Chapter 1