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Incense Games

The Games of Kodo


Kumiko (Ku-me-koh) are the incense games played during a Kodo ceremony. These games are a fun and enjoyable way to experience the pleasures of incense with your friends and family.

There are almost limitless variations of Kumiko to enjoy within the Kodo style of incense burning. Traditional Kodo includes the burning of three to six types of raw aloeswood, and occasionally, sandalwood.

The incense games are often based on seasonal themes, history, classic literature, waka poetry, or travel.

In Kodo, the term “listening to incense” is used and symbolizes the attention and mindfulness paid to each fragrant wood in the ceremony.

The idea of all of these incense games is to enjoy the process of listening to each fragrant wood. These are not contests but simply methods for enjoying the fragrances and reawakening our sense of smell. There are no winners or losers in Kodo, just the simple elegance of enjoying fine incense.

Here we introduce three Incense Games anyone can enjoy. Click on each title for instructions.