- Views The World of Zen
- The Language of Zen: Words for a World of Change
- [2017.03.25] Read in: 日本語 | ESPAÑOL | العربية |
Familiar people and places surround us, but we should recognize that each encounter is different. The first of a series introducing the language of Zen through easy-to-understand manga strips tackles the phrase 一期一会 (ichigo ichie).
Ichigo Ichie: Newness in Every Encounter
The phrase 一期一会 (ichigo ichie) means a single meeting (一会; ichie) in the course of a lifetime (一期; ichigo), or a “once-in-a-lifetime encounter.” It derives from the tea ceremony.
A tea ceremony may take place many times in the same room, perhaps even involving the same host and guests. Yet participants should infuse themselves, body and soul, with the thought that the day’s particular event will only occur once. When we meet people in other situations, considering each time as unique makes these opportunities precious.
Even with people we see regularly—like parents, brothers and sisters, or friends and colleagues—we will treat them with more care if we think of each meeting as only happening once. And going beyond people to dogs, cats, and other animals, or to trees and other plants, we can view all encounters as never to be repeated. This will surely foster a new sense of connection with the world.
Cast of Characters
Noriko, a selfish junior high school student
Her father, a baker
A young baking apprentice
(Originally published in Japanese on March 22, 2017. Manga by Mokutan Angelo.)
Born in Brazil. Inspired by Japanese manga at the age of 14, he decided to become a manga creator himself. Studied manga and Japanese and attended Tokyo Zōkei University as a graduate student from 2007. After graduation, worked at an IT corporation for five years. Was a manga representative at the opening ceremony for the 2015 Tokyo International Book Fair. Produces many manga works based on Zen, including the Mai zen daiarī (My Zen Diary) strip for the Japanese business magazine President Next.
- Other articles in this report
- The Roots of Mindfulness: Hakuin Ekaku and the Art of ZenZen Buddhism has had a profound impact on Japanese society and culture. Today the influence of Zen “mindfulness” is felt throughout the world. In this article we look at the human side of the great Zen masters of the past and the ways in which Zen continues to be relevant to people in contemporary society.
- Steve Jobs and the Rediscovery of ZenComing of age at a time when the counterculture was embracing Eastern mysticism, Steve Jobs ended up as a lifelong practitioner of Zen meditation. Through the lens of Jobs’s amazing life, career, and posthumous impact, we examine the evolution of Zen-style meditation from a spiritual pursuit into a practical health-maintenance tool.