Saturday, January 30, 2016

Carpe Diem #907 meditation

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

It's a bit sad, but also a little joy I think, because this is our last episode of January and we are going in to another month in which we will sharpen our senses together with Hamish Managua Gunn (a.k.a. Pirate). Next month will not be an easy month I think, but it will for sure be a challenge to work with all those wonderful senses. If you like to see what February is bringing than you can find the prompt-list in the menu above. I am looking forward to February and I hope you all will do ...

Today we have our last prompt of January in which we explored classical and modern kigo for winter and it was a joy to make this month. Our last prompt is meditation and it's a modern kigo for winter extracted from Jane Reichhold's "A Dictionary of Haiku" (the online version).

What is meditation? I can tell that myself, but my ideas are different as it concerns meditation. To me it's just a way to find peace in my heart, soul and mind and to me it's not
necessary to do that in complete silence or with the use of a mantra or something. So I have sought the Internet an ran across a wonderful explanation of meditation on Wikipedia:


Meditation is a practice where an individual trains the mind or induces a mode of consciousness, either to realize some benefit or for the mind to simply acknowledge its content without becoming identified with that content, or as an end in itself.

The term meditation refers to a broad variety of practices that includes techniques designed to promote relaxation, build internal energy or life force (qi, ki, prana, etc.) and develop compassion, love, patience, generosity and forgiveness. A particularly ambitious form of meditation aims at effortlessly sustained single-pointed concentration meant to enable its practitioner to enjoy an indestructible sense of well-being while engaging in any life activity.

The word meditation carries different meanings in different contexts. Meditation has been practiced since antiquity as a component of numerous religious traditions and beliefs. Meditation often involves an internal effort to self-regulate the mind in some way. Meditation is often used to clear the mind and ease many health concerns, such as high blood pressure, depression, and anxiety. It may be done sitting, or in an active way—for instance, Buddhist monks involve awareness in their day-to-day activities as a form of mind-training. Prayer beads or other ritual objects are commonly used during meditation in order to keep track of or remind the practitioner about some aspect of that training.
Meditation may involve generating an emotional state for the purpose of analyzing that state—such as anger, hatred, etc.—or cultivating a particular mental response to various phenomena, such as compassion. The term "meditation" can refer to the state itself, as well as to practices or techniques employed to cultivate the state. Meditation may also involve repeating a mantra and closing the eyes. The mantra is chosen based on its suitability to the individual meditator. Meditation has a calming effect and directs awareness inward until pure awareness is achieved, described as "being awake inside without being aware of anything except awareness itself." In brief, there are dozens of specific styles of meditation practice, and many different types of activity commonly referred to as meditative practices. (Source: Wikipedia)

I think you all will have ideas about meditation and every one of you will have experienced meditation through haiku composing. To me creating haiku is a kind of meditation and that is (in my opinion) what Jane meant with this modern kigo for winter. Meditation is not specific for winter, but the air of winter is maybe the purest to breath and makes your mind clear and open for the influence of the "haiku spirits".

Jane gives several wonderful examples and I love to share a few of her haiku on meditation here in this post:

incense burns
inside a moon shell
whorls of smoke

monks chanting
the crooked pine
wind straightened

the balance of chi
in two hands

ascending heaven
monks chant

alone in the forest
closing one gate
opening the other

tapered prayer
a lone pine points
into heaven

Zen garden
patterns raked by falling rain
still the dust

© Jane Reichhold

All beauties I would say and I think these are great examples on meditation.
Credits: Meditating Monk
We are all haiku poets and we are all one with nature, with the seasons, with the elements ... we are all one with our ancestors, our past, our present, but also one with our future ... so I think this prompt can be great one ...
deep silence
sunbeams breaking, fresh snow diamonds -
the silence deepens

© Chèvrefeuille

Sorry ... I am a little bit to late with publishing ... enjoy the read and let your muse inspire you to create new and wonderful haiku, tanka or other Japanese poetry forms.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until February 2nd at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, hearing, later on. For now .... have fun!


  1. As soon as I saw this prompt ,I could not resist to upload a haiku written a few months back for I like the prompt meditation too much and the haiku I wrote that cool morning is not publish yet . so here it is ...

    milan rajkumar


  3. This month was a pleasure to write for. Thank you. These prompts helped me through a difficult time.