Kobo Daishi is a most founders Japanese calligraphy.
“Kobo does not choose a brush” is one of the famous stories of Kobo Daishi. It is said that Mr. Kobo will write any character brilliantly regardless of the brush, and it is generally used to mean that “a master has an skill that is not influenced by tools”.
People who not enough learn blame easily the tools quality and others, so it seems to be often used as a word to warn them about that.
I have a bitter experience myself.
I will never forget it
A dexterous person is good at imitating a model and can easily “make it nice “. I was a disciple like “the sample”. My teacher said to me often “you are dexterous”. The words, It is looks like a Praise but also despise.( laugh )
My grades were good, my colleagues were interested in me, and I was proud of myself. One day, when I had my teacher correct it, I blamed the brush only once. Then the teacher said, “Bring your brush,” and he wrote a wonderful letter in front of me with that brush.
Speaking of embarrassment at that time … I will never forget it.
After that, I firmly vowed, “Never blame the tools again!”. It went a little too far, I didn’t change my brush until the teacher pointed out, and my teacher gave me a ink-stone that he made it by himself, because I used a chipped ink-stone very long time.( laugh )
As a result, I can now write with most tools. Now that I’ve done that, I’ve become very interested in the taste and orientation of tools.
The meaning of polishing your skills
There are actually good and bad tools. Brushes that are mass-produced and whose brush tips are not aligned. It may be interesting to use for avant-garde paintings that do not require a brush tip, but it may not be suitable for making penmanship, calligraphy works, or learning SHO. But that’s it.
I think that polishing your skills means having diversity.
When a person encounters a defect, he or she first wants to blame the other person’s fault. I think it can’t be helped because it come from one of the self-defense. However, if I can find my own improvement points through the defects, I’m sure there will be better and also fun things to do, in learning calligraphy and also for other .
By the way, the real point of “Kobo does not choose a brush” is that “Mr. Kobo knows which brush is suitable for which character and immediately selects a brush and writes the character nicely ,In the eyes of an amateur, he seemed to be able to write without choosing a brush.”
The scenery you can see from the top of a high mountain cannot be seen from the foot of the mountain (laughs).