Japanese kodo master Souhitsu Hachiya performs a traditional incense ceremony in Beijing, Oct. 21, 2016.
(ECNS) -- Japanese kodo master Souhitsu Hachiya offered culture lovers a feast for the senses on Friday afternoon in Beijing.
The kodo master performed a traditional incense ceremony at the Japanese embassy, captivating the audience with his precise gestures and consummate skill.
"Seeing Master Hachiya sifting and decorating ash in a ceramic pot, burying a burning charcoal in the ash and putting fragrant wood on top was definitely an enjoyment," a Chinese incense fan said.
The audience also experienced olfactory satisfaction as they took turns ritually twisting the pot and sniffing the blend of scents coming out of it.
"This was the first time I ever smelled fragrant wood like this, and I would like to learn more about the art," a young woman said.
Kodo, or the art of appreciating incense, is considered one of the three classic arts of refinement in Japan, along with kado, dedicated to flower arrangement, and sado for tea.
In his speech, Master Hachiya said kodo offers a way to communicate with nature, and when we smell the fragrant wood gently warmed by the charcoal we should try to listen to the incense as well.
Souhitsu Hachiya is the designated Head Master of the 21st generation of Shino-Ryu, one of the two largest kodo schools in Japan.