Water has always been a central aspect in the consciousness of mankind. The interesting fact is that the Four Substances, Air (or ethers), Earth, Fire and Water are all bound up into life. We cannot exist without them. Feng Shui refers to the elements of Fire, Water, Earth, Metal and Wood. However you want to look at the elements, they all possess the same powers of providing nourishment, life, cleansing, rebirth or regeneration and death. They move through our lives in such a way as to be overlooked until one or the other is out of balance and we are faced with the consequences. Each of the elements has deep and lasting metaphysical and spiritual properties and could, in their own right, be a book in and of themselves.
But here we are dealing with water for a Japanese garden, or for that matter, any garden. We cannot separate ourselves from water since we are vessels for and of it. Our cells are literally little floating islands on an ocean of creation. The Tsukubai represents our lives as being the vessel that the Universal Creative Force pours forth its Light. We are the receivers. In Life we must pass this gift on or the water stagnates and ceases to flow. Water sets the example for us through its Chi or energy of moving from one state to another then to another and so on. Water, when placed in the Roji garden, is one of the reminders to those who walk it paths, that they must first cleanse the body by a ritual washing of the hands(the outside cleansing) and then drinking the water, the life force itself (the inside cleansing). This is letting go of that which is within us that needs healing and cleansing. Then as the person enters the celebration of the tea ceremony they are ready to receive, to be an open vessel. It is a meditative ceremony meant to focus our eyes inward and connect with all that is holy.
A Japanese inner Roji garden always has a water basin with flowing water ready and waiting for those who seek enlightenment. It is an important feature and one that should be treated with reverence. Our Tsukubai are hand carved to insure that there are natural differences in each piece giving an old world appearance. Some are carved from antique barn and bridge stones and some are carved from granite boulders. They are hand selected for interesting characteristics and are chiseled by our Amish Partners.