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moon in the water Blog Tools Rating: Rate This Blog
Creation Date: 04-26-2010 10:46 PM
the water does not try
to reflect the moon
and the moon has no desire
to be reflected
but when the clouds clear
there is the moon in the water
Blog Info
Status: Public
Entries: 155
Comments: 1,111
Views: 1,009,334


In Miscellaneous Ever green Entry Tools Rating: 5 Stars!
  #35 New 12-24-2010 02:00 AM
Ever green The pine tree lives for a thousand years
The morning-glory for but a single day
Yet both have fulfilled their destiny

quoted in D T Suzuki, Zen and Japanese Culture

Change your Christmas trees into Kadomatsu!
When I heard my doorbell and opened my door
There stood Santa
With a pistol in his hand

Kurisumasu Tsurii O Kiritaose!

Kadomatsu means gate pine. In Japan kadomatsu arrangements of pine and bamboo and plum are placed in front of doors for the new year. Pine means long life and good luck, bamboo means prosperity and plum means strength or courage. There are different layers of meaning too. Pine can also mean youth or happiness. Bamboo can mean resilience. Or honesty - when bamboo is cut it is hollow and hides nothing. The plum in Asian culture symbolizes winter but also that the spring will come. There was a discussion about some of the meanings after they appeared in one of the poems of O Sensei, the founder of aikido: http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=19040.

The kadomatsu in the snow is almost like a Christmas tree. The evergreen pine tree is a universal symbol of renewal. It's a good thing to remember. To be ever green. Always fresh. Always young.

I wish you happiness for the season and for the year ahead. And may you stay forever young.

Great version of Bob Dylan's song Forever Young by Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam:

Kadomatsu on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kadomatsu

cool winter photo: Kadomatsu in Snow by Timothy Takemoto http://www.flickr.com/photos/nihonbunka/4229777880/ photostream http://www.flickr.com/photos/nihonbu...th/4229777880/ used under creative commons licence and with his very kind permission

niall matthews 2010
Views: 4514 | Comments: 24

RSS Feed 24 Responses to "Ever green"
#9 12-27-2010 02:22 AM
Makochan Says:
Very nice blog Niall, your blogs capture the moment in a most enjoyable way. Quite complex thoughts presented in a sympathetic and assessable way. I endorse Takahshi Sensei and Carina's comments about writing for a wider audience. When we trained together in Japan, you always said that you would write a book. Before we met again on the net, I looked for it. I am a customer in waiting. Kindest as always, Happy New Year; Billy
#8 12-26-2010 07:06 PM
niall Says:
Takahashi Sensei thank you for your kind words. Carina thank you too.
#7 12-26-2010 11:22 AM
guest1234567 Says:
Niall I agree with Takahashi Sensei. I hope you'll find time to consider writing on a larger scale, and for a major audience... But only if it does not change your normal life,only as an hobby. You know what your priorities are
#6 12-26-2010 09:03 AM
aikishihan Says:
Again, your unique and welcome talent for making the sublime appear so reachable, and so easy to comprehend, makes me implore you to consider writing on a larger scale, and for a major audience. No need to change customs, as the traditional "tannenbaum" remains beloved and familiar to so many. Rather, by glimpsing through yet another portal of the Aiki kaleidoscope, we may expand again our appreciation for O Sensei's marvelous gift to us.
#5 12-24-2010 07:41 AM
niall Says:
Thanks Carina! That doka/poem by O Sensei we talked about before was very deep. Thanks for the interesting comments about the pine and the plum blossom.
#4 12-24-2010 06:35 AM
guest1234567 Says:
"the plum flower that blossoms once in three spiritual worlds." First, the five petals of the plum blossom represent the five forms of universal energy: earth, water, fire, wind, and sky. If you think of the plum blossom in this way, you will discover in this phrase a lesson about the universe itself.....
#3 12-24-2010 06:32 AM
guest1234567 Says:
A very nice post, the photo is great and the video emotive, yes we have to stay forever young in our hearts. About the pine I'd like to add it means renewal like in aikido fall down and stand up like in life, never give up if you are down. About bamboo be flexibel and strong at the same time also like in aikido and in life and for the plum I like to quote http://aikidoalive.co.uk/London/O_Sensei.html
#2 12-24-2010 05:15 AM
niall Says:
Thanks, Dave. Same here - your ukemi is excellent. Great job on your test too.
#1 12-24-2010 04:56 AM
Dave Thomas Says:
Merry Christmas Niall.hope to train with you again soon. Dave.

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