I was able to make it out to Ryoanji Temple today, after a little uncertainty time-wise. Ryoanji is most famous for it’s Zen rock garden, but I was more interested in (you guessed it) the famous tsukubai there.
The tsukubai has a square carving in the middle of the stone, with pieces of Kanji written around the four cardinal directions from the center. By themselves they’re kinda meaningless, but read using the square basin as the 口 portion, the four characters form the words 吾 唯 足 知 (notice the square portion of each kanji).
Ware Tada Taru (wo) Shiru: “I only know what is sufficient" or as the dictionary says: "I am content with what I am (have)”
How very Zen, right? Hopefully those words will help get me through the chaji tomorrow (I will be participating as a guest in a tea ceremony at the Urasenke school of tea here in Kyoto).