In light, ten meant to go

The idea of the New Year’s card was to show images of my experiences during the past year, a personal review so too speak.  I usually find myself  beginning with images I think will impress others, then feeling uncomfortable, slowly start exchanging different images until it feels more like myself.

Obviously I did not make one of these images, that is me in the group image,  upper left, light teal shirt, grey hair —we had attended an afternoon performance of a Japanese story telling, , the woman in kimono is ”the teacher”  in the back on my left is my sister and next is my son. In the front wearing the orange  jacket is Tomoko, a long time family friend.


Entering Yasukuni Jinja, approaching the large stone torii feels like entering a sanctuary for the power and the glory.


In Tokyo where many people walk, a lot, temples and shrines are ubiquitously  integrated into the everyday experience, where people not only pass them every day, they often take shortcuts through the temple/shrine grounds which generally  are a pleasant sensual experience.


Just outside the shrine a natural landscape amidst river and tall buildings.


Al Capone pizza early on an early  Sunday morning,  Haymarket (Boston), about 1972.


The business is now Haymarket Pizza and the neighbor is Dirty Molly’s Pub (Google maps, 01-04-20).


San Francisco: Would  you suppose that these people posed separately?  Both appear visually as if the viewer is right in front of the person, but you cannot be in two places at one time. The same can be seen in many Renaissance paintings which are less stylized with more definitive visual information, and the camera obscura was used as a tool of painters to reduce production time and probably model  costs.


The streets of San Francisco, some people love to have their “photograph taken,“  here I took it from UN Plaza to the WWW.


Musician performing for free  in the UN Plaza . . .


Musician hawking his sounds on Market Street . . .


And another texting himself  to “Feel HIs Spirit.”


Woman waiting for her son on Telegraph Hill. Walking down the hill towards Grant Street  I saw her, and stopped to watch, she was like this for about 30 minutes, her son pulled up in big black  Benz, on the phone, busy, busy, busy.

He got out of the car, dressed in business suit, opened the trunk, put the bundles in, shut the trunk,  helped her get in the front seat, went back around, got in the driver’s seat and drove away, all the while talking business on the phone.

Multi tasking with mom.


Young boy hangs out on  Market Street, he could be sitting zazen—why not?, or then again, or maybe for the first time   Why? Where else does he have to be.


Haight-Ashbury character right out of a Dickens Hollywood movie. Books require a different kind of  participation than movies,  It takes many years to learn how to read while during that time people experience film, TV and now videos. How much does the childhood film experience alter the ability of the adult reader experience, say in reading Dickens?  or about Greece or Rome? or the Bible, or history?


One day this image came out, a reflection off-of , and through, a store window  . . .


And again of-off and through .


Spending a  romantic afternoon, coffee away from the bustle, hanging out together, but still in the neighborhood.


And tea . . .  and chawan.

There was  a little shop in Japan town tucked away in around a less traveled corner, almost what you could call a “pop up,” —it was there awhile and then gone.

He sold tea—matcha, sencha, genmai . . . and had some beautiful tea bowls. There was an oribe tea pot I often wish I had bought, yet I enjoy the memory of  wishing I had bought it, maybe the memory is better than actually owning it.


What I do own, hagi


and kuro-oribe . . .


There is everyday art, such as pottery or textiles, things which you have to use in your everyday life and because of the “Art” your benefit from using goes beyond the functional purpose and becomes a pleasant part of your daily life.

On a short-cut path,
Stepping through water to cross
In the summer rains.
Haiku by Buson, translated from Japanese by Yuki Sawa and Edith Marcombe Shiffert

Below you can see bizen, hagi, mashiko, oribe, seto-guro, shino, setoyaki, and some local  potters. I wash the dishes by hand,


Is there a difference between the enlightened and non enlightened person? Would the enlightened me recognize my nonenlightened self? If I see myself on the road, would I kill him.

Here is a site offering enlightenment through a one word mantra— still even the title of the book is two words, the description is paragraphs of  words and the “personal testimonial recommendation” is 42 words.


It just like zen with all its books telling you how to be enlightened, how to discover your own Buddha inside of you, how to tell you what cannot be told, except for the 6th Patriarch, he was not literate, he could not read, or he did not knead to read, is there any difference if you are enlightened?

Is there a true process and a false process to get there, which is not here, or maybe it includes here— here and there are no different, the same time, the some place, the same thing.

I just need to convince myself to be enlightened, or at least stop meeting myself like this.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s