Japanese tea ceremony masters should stop using smoking chest on serving tea
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Koganji Temple, Tokyo, Japan
Akinori Kuruma   

Koganji Temple, Tokyo, Japan
Publication date: 2021-09-02
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2021;19(Suppl 1):A110
The author blows the whistle on using smoking chest in Tea Ceremony (TC). TC, well known worldwide has been brought by a Buddhist monk and has been an important part of Japanese culture. However, smoking chests "tobacco bon"(sets of smoking supplies including pipes, cut tobacco, lighter and ashtray) are always prepared in formal tea parties. That is because TC masters ~400 years ago started smoking, made it a rule and glorified it. Now smoking chest often plays an important role of a sign of the superior guest seat in tea room rather than mere smoking supplies. Therefore, TC masters nowadays never take it for granted that smoking chest should be removed, even though they do not smoke and they teach children how to serve tea. This trend helps tobacco industry to justify smoking itself as a traditional hospitality, and to make use of the authority of TC for evil purpose. e.g. Japan Tobacco's TV commercial featuring TC was broadcasted nationwide in 2016 (

The author had have uploaded an article entitled "put smoking chest away in TC" through JSTC magazine available in the website ( that is now easily accessible via Internet search. Also, The author had sent the article to some of TC masters/secretariat.

One school reprinted of the whole article on their annual journal and the head master wrote "it is about time to stop". But it seems to be a long way to go before all the TC school masters stop using smoking chests and put them away in the warehouse of museum.

TC world is extremely feudalistic where "Iemoto (head master)" rules his whole school. The author urge the readers to make a loud voice and keep claiming the use of smoking chest as a wrong way for TC.