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Thread: ATTENTION: Our Treeleaf SHAKYO Practice Circle has Opened!

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    ATTENTION: Our Treeleaf SHAKYO Practice Circle has Opened!

    Dear All,

    Just a note that our Shakyo Pactice Circle has opened, hosted by Geika. It is simple, easy, peaceful, and I recommend it to everyone to try.


    What is "Shakyo"?

    The practice of Shakyo (写経, which literally means "Copying Sutras") is a simple yet focused, relaxing yet powerful meditative practice that anyone can do, offered at many temples in Japan. Millions of people in Japan have practiced Shakyo, either just occasionally when visiting a famous temple as a tourist, or regularly and more seriously as part of a particular temple's Shakyo club.

    Shakyo typically starts with a bow in Gassho, before one picks up one's ink brush or pen and begins to slowly trace the original text of a chosen Buddhist Sutra. We will trace the Heart Sutra as our first Sutra for tracing, but hope to practice with many other Sutras and Chants too.

    Although Japanese and Chinese calligraphy are a true art form, and one can spend a lifetime to master traditional brush skill, one does not need to be a master calligrapher at all in order to practice and enjoy Shakyo. Nor does one need to be able to read Chinese or Japanese. In fact, it is often undertaken by children in Japan, by elderly persons with shaking hands, or by those simply wishing to enjoy the practice without their writing being judged or criticized in any way.


    If one wants, one can study a bit about what the particular Kanji (Chinese Characters) that one is tracing mean, as well as the proper order and direction of writing strokes, looking at examples of nicely written Kanji. However, none of that is necessary in order to benefit from the practice of Shakyo, which does have some similarity to "paint by numbers" painting ... except with Buddhist Sutras in Chinese and Japanese. We will provide some information and resources on what the Kanji mean, the meaning of the Sutra being written, some basic rules of Japanese writing, and the like, but studying the same is purely up to each person. In fact, tracing the shape of the Kanji silently, without the slightest idea what the lines mean, simply tracing for tracing's sake, can be a wonderful Zen practice too.

    To participate you will need some simple and inexpensive items.

    Gassho, Jundo

    Last edited by Jundo; 03-11-2021 at 05:27 AM.

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