Let’s dive a bit deeper into the relationship between Nagoya Castle and Chanoyu. For that, we need to rewind to the Warring States period, a short time before the completion of Nagoya Castle, to take a look at “Wabi-cha,” a style of Chanoyu created by Sen-no-Rikyu.

Most Wabi-cha tea rooms are very small, frugal, and gloomy. Patrons enter through the “Nijiri-guchi,” an entrance built so that every patron, regardless of social status, must stoop their head to enter. Hommaru Palace, by comparison, is the polar opposite to this sensibility. The world of Wabi-cha embodies Yūgen by separating one from the material world where power and appearances are everything.

Additionally, Wabi-cha tea rooms served as places for military commanders to meet in secret during wartime; handling stately affairs in the castle on one hand, and conducting clandestine meetings and negotiations in the tea rooms on the other. The barren space allowed them to focus on the matters at hand without being distracted by trifling adornments.

You can imagine how Hommaru Palace, despite appearances, could have actually been in a sense inseparable from Chanoyu.

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