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Photo Copyright Suresh Gundappa 2006

The Japanese word haiku means the beginning. Since time immemorial, the haiku poets conveyed the message that We only begin and never end. What a poet began, the listener had to complete.This bond is in keeping with the true tradition of Zen thought. The state of Zen is achieved through dhyan and Japanese poets wrote out their experiences after meditation as haikus. Some haikus especially the ones written before death were remembered for centuries as their last words. Haikus of Basho, the most famous Japanese master, should be savoured. Repeat it, sing it, swallow it deeply and then sit silently, waiting for the meaning to be revealed.

Let me share with you one of my favourite haiku:

“Strange how a teapot Can represent at the same time The comforts of solitude And the pleasures of company” -zen Haiku

Drinking tea with awareness is one of the meditations of zen. Tea ceremony has been the most meditative phenomena of Zen. The above sentence says it all. If you can drink tea with all awareness sipping slowly then you can be in meditation. Just drinking tea is enough to be in Meditation. Zen has a significant message when they say drinking tea, you can be aware. What they are trying to tell you is that you do not have to be sitting in meditative pose to be in meditation. You can bring Meditation in every single act of yours or you can be meditative irrespective of your act. This is what it means when you hear teapot can represent comforts of solitude.

However if you are living in your mind thinking through past and future, then you can be non-meditative also while drinking tea. Just observe your own tea drinking- you will know that tea is only mechanical need for you. Your mind is always somewhere else while drinking tea and that’s what it means when you hear teapot bringing pleasures of company.

try some classic haikus at follwing link
http://buddhism.kalachakranet.org/resources/zen_poems.html

I hope some haiku may ignite your spiritual calling

Love and it’s nice to be back

Suresh

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