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Shodo calligraphy

Brushing mountains and waters at Shodo Japanese calligraphy

Brushing mountains and waters at Shodo Japanese calligraphy

At Zen Brush in November we brushed three kanji characters, each repeated twice with different versions, in the monumental zen phrase Yama wa kore yama mizu wa kore mizu 山是山水是水 which can be translated as mountains are mountains, waters are waters (from Zen master Dōgen’s… Read More »Brushing mountains and waters at Shodo Japanese calligraphy

Expressing the Way in Shodo Japanese Calligraphy

Expressing the Way in Shodo Japanese Calligraphy

We brushed the two kanji characters in the inspiring zen phrase Dōtoku 道得 (lterally way/express ; grasp/pick up/able to) which can be translated as expressing the way, expressing truth, or picking up the way. Blair discussed their Zen meanings and connection to calligraphic expression in… Read More »Expressing the Way in Shodo Japanese Calligraphy

Midsummer Zen Shodo Calligraphy

Midsummer Zen Shodo Calligraphy

At Zen Brush, our online Shodō calligraphy group (monthly on zoom) we brushed the four kanji characters in the heartful zen phrase Anjin-ryumyo 安心立命 (literally ease/peace ;  heart-mind ; stand; fate). This can be translated in various ways  such as peace and enlightenment, or letting… Read More »Midsummer Zen Shodo Calligraphy

Swirling inky clouds and water in Shodō calligraphy

Swirling inky clouds and water in Shodō calligraphy

At our online Shodō calligraphy group (monthly on zoom) we brushed the elemental zen word Unsui 雲水, literally meaning clouds and water, and more specifically meaning novice zen monks and nuns (it is shortened from going clouds-flowing waters), coming from a Chinese poem ‘to drift… Read More »Swirling inky clouds and water in Shodō calligraphy

Brushing Zen Calligraphy: Turning the Light Inward

Brushing Zen Calligraphy: Turning the Light Inward

At our zoom Shodō calligraphy in March, we brushed the beautiful zen phrase Ekō -henshō 回向返照, meaning ‘turning the light inward and illuminating the self’, or ‘turning facing, answering with light’. Blair talked about the meanings of the phrase and use in Master Dogen’s meditation… Read More »Brushing Zen Calligraphy: Turning the Light Inward

Brushing freedom at Zen Shodo Calligraphy

Brushing freedom at Zen Shodo Calligraphy

This month we brushed the expressive Omoi Yokoshima Nashi 思無邪, a Confucian and zenny phrase Blair’s first Shodo teacher Master Waskabayashi worked on. He was a great Granpa to Blair and gifted him several materials, books and lots of Shodo inspiration about Zen, nature and… Read More »Brushing freedom at Zen Shodo Calligraphy

Shodo Brushing the Winds of the Ancient Teachings

Shodo Brushing the Winds of the Ancient Teachings

At Shodō calligraphy for our first group this Tiger year (Tora in Japanese), we peacefully brushed the very airy and natural feeling Genpū  玄風 . This is a lovely zen word that can mean mysterious winds, meaning the profound teachings of the ancient zen teachers… Read More »Shodo Brushing the Winds of the Ancient Teachings

Brushing Shikantaza at Shodō Zen Calligraphy

Brushing Shikantaza at Shodō Zen Calligraphy

At Shodō calligraphy for our last group together in 2021, we had great fun brushing the lovely loose characters of Shikantaza  只管打坐 , about Zen sitting meditation (Zazen). We enjoyed exploring the kanji characters together in the semi cursive Gyōsho style and the quirky old… Read More »Brushing Shikantaza at Shodō Zen Calligraphy

Celebrating 紅葉 Autumn Colours in Sо̄sho Calligraphy

Celebrating 紅葉 Autumn Colours in Sōsho Calligraphy

At our Shodō calligraphy group (on the last or second last Monday monthly on Zoom), we brushed two characters Kōyo  紅葉 , meaning Autumn Colours. The kanji literally means crimson red leaves, so we celebrated and embraced the autumn season through Shodо̄ 🍁 We brushed… Read More »Celebrating 紅葉 Autumn Colours in Sōsho Calligraphy

Brushing Mind Here and Now is Buddha

Brushing Mind Here and Now is Buddha

At our monthly Shodo calligraphy group online on Zoom we brushed the four deep characters Soku Shin Ze Butsu  即心是佛 , a famous old zen saying –  heart-mind here and now is Buddha – about being together with all things. We brushed this in the… Read More »Brushing Mind Here and Now is Buddha