Concentrating on the Job at HandCulture Language
Have you ever had this experience? You have a task to do, like clearing up an untidy room or some kind of manual work requiring patience. Although it seems demanding at first, as you focus you gradually lose sense of time. Before you realize it, the job is almost complete.
The phrase 一行三昧 (ichigyō zanmai) means total concentration (三昧; sanmai) on a single task (一行; ichigyō). The Japanese term sanmai is taken from the Sanskrit samadhi, a concept found in various meditative traditions.
Whether it is something one wishes to do or not, putting idle thoughts aside—and even putting thought itself aside—allows for complete absorption, body and soul, in the immediate job at hand. On returning to the present moment, one understands what a precious and unique experience one has enjoyed.
Cast of Characters
Noriko, a junior high school student.
(Originally published in Japanese on August 22, 2018. Manga by Mokutan Angelo.)