Asahikawa to Furano – Haikus

Today we had to options for riding from Asahikawa to Furano.
One group the focus was on flower watching: Hana-mi 花見
(花 – Hana -flower, and 見 – mi – see)
And the other one the focus was hard Pedaling in the mountains.

I chose to be a 花見 today.
And on the way I heard several Haikus:

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Colorful flowers on the side of the road
Came out to say Hi!
Lifting spirits high.

Being the mind in the here and now,
The Haiku brought a flower,
Now the Haiku, the flower and I are Pedaling together.


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Coasts of illusion

“There is no Garden of Eden and the Hesperides never were. Yet, in our very search for them, we touch the coasts of illusion and come into contact with other worlds.”

D. H. Lawrence

I admire people who have the gift of words and are able to skillfully “paint” the world with their stories…

In my flight to Tenerife, I looked out through the window, and took a picture of Mountain Teide emerging through the clouds… An inspiring view… A gate to illusions, a foundation for stories…

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In Tenerife we are pedaling up Mount Teide, the highest peak in Spain. We are bicycling also in La Gomera…

As Summer turns into Fall

As Summer turns into Fall,
And leaves start changing color
Turning brown, red and gold,
And as the hair turns grey,
Or starts to fall,
Do you ponder,
Which is the trail
To go yonder?
In search of not searching,
In need of not needing,

As the crossroads you reach,

without doing much math,

You choose the poet’s path,

Towards the kingdom
of peace, Harmony and wisdom,

Ksemendra in Kavikanthabharanam, a thwefth-century verse treatise on poetic training, compared poets to Nature Sentinels:
With his own eyes a poet
Observes the shape of a leaf.
He knows how to make
people laugh
and studies the nature of each living thing.
The features of oceans and mountains,
The motions of sun, moon and stars.
His thoughts turn with the seasons.
He goes among different peoples
Learning their landscapes,
Learning their languages.

And to you, Dear One who are reading this simple words of dreams and love, may the following Apache Blessing be fulfilled for you:

May the Sun
Bring you energy by day,

May The Moon
Softly restore you by night.

May the Rain
Wash away your worries,

May the Breeze
blow new strength into your being.

May You Walk
Gently through the world and know
It’s beauty all the days of your life.

Japan through Japanese expressions

花見 – Hana mi – For viewing – Flower watching.

花見宴 – Flower viewing party – hanami utage

森林浴 – Shin Rin yoku – Forest bathing

自転車 – Bicycle – self moving vehicle – ji ten sha

Every day my bicycle became stronger and learned to climb mountains…

幽玄 – Yugen – subtle grace; hidden beauty; yugen; mysterious profundity; elegant simplicity; the subtle and profound.
An awareness of the Universe that triggers emotional responses too deep and mysterious for words.

木漏れ日 – Komorebi – sunlight filtering through trees.

Suiseki (水石) are small naturally occurring or shaped rocks which are traditionally appreciated. They are similar to Chinese scholar’s rocks.

Saikei (栽景) literally translates as “planted landscape”.

Wabi Sabi. In traditional Japanese aesthetics, Wabi-sabi (侘寂) is a world view on the acceptance of transience and imperfection.

According to Leonard Koren, wabi-sabi can be defined as “the most conspicuous and characteristic feature of traditional Japanese beauty and it occupies roughly the same position in the Japanese pantheon of aesthetic values as do the Greekideals of beauty and perfection in the West”.[3]

Whereas Andrew Juniper notes that “[i]f an object or expression can bring about, within us, a sense of serene melancholy and a spiritual longing, then that object could be said to be wabi-sabi”.[4]

For Richard Powell, “[w]abi-sabi nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect”.[5]

Buddhist author Taro Gold describes wabi-sabi as “the wisdom and beauty of imperfection”.

Some Chinese expressions

跑香 – Pao xiang – sweet smelling running – walking meditation

禪坐 – Chán zuò
prolonged and intense contemplation; deep meditation; dhyana

坐禪 – zuòchán – sit in meditation

The sagging bird’s thoughts about togetherness

O sagging bird
Who flies high
and from above
every thing can see.
Your bird’s eye panoramic view
Allows you to see
The old as new
as you fly over the sea.
How can you stay with the flock
If you fly at your own pace?

The old and wise sagging bird said:
Togetherness does not require
Constant physical proximity
What does this mean?
You may inquire.
This is simple,
The flock and I
See with the same eye.
In Chinese and Japanese,
Together means , 一道, ー島

一道 – one path, yīdào in Chinese, ichido in Japanese
ー島 – one island, yi Shima

We fly in the same path,
We perch on the same island,
But some in the flock
Flap energetically their wings,
Propelled to the night’s 島 (perching island)
They want to arrive fast,
And none wants to be the last…

As I fly and everything under the sun I see,
People pressed by time I have seen,

As I fly and the beauty and wisdom of nature behold,
The Japanese expression 幽玄 – Yugen – flies together with me…

幽玄 – Yugen – subtle grace; hidden beauty; yugen; mysterious profundity; elegant simplicity; the subtle and profound.
An awareness of the Universe that triggers emotional responses too deep and mysterious for words.

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As I fly I contemplate the clouds in heaven and Earth:

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As I fly, I stop and make a pause…

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I perch on top of a tree,

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And immerse myself in 森林浴 – Shin Rin yoku – Forest bathing

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I stop and talk with people, they do not see many multicolored birds flying over these parts, and are curious to know on which islands I’m perching…
But I only chirp and quack, and they speak Japanese but neither chirp not quack, but somehow we understand each other and share a smile…

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I briefly land by a waterfall…
And then continue my flight towards tonight’s perching Island, where together with the rest of the flock we perch and dine…

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Toyako to Onuma – Pedaling together as a group

Six birds high in the air,
Were requested to stay together as a group,
But what does it mean to stay together?
The answer my friend is flying with the birds.

One bird is laggnig slightly behind,
What do you do to fly as a group?
We ask the sagging bird…

Chirp Chirp, Quack Quack, here I come!
He said…

Enjoying the beautiful view as I fly, he added…

In the midst of beautiful surroundings,
Shall we bypass Wonder
By speedily pedaling yonder?