Japanese Zen in your garden

Summer is finally here and this means you can finally relax with a beautiful garden furniture sets. Summer is the best time to set up your backyard and really give your garden the love and care it deserves. There are many ways to achieve that ideal and relaxing garden atmosphere. Here are some ways you can create your very own beautiful and peaceful setting in your own private backyard. Creating that all important relaxing garden atmosphere, is essential to your enjoyment of the sunshine this summer. There is no better way for creating that all important garden ambiance than with Asian or Japanese infused design. Here is how you can create your very own beautiful, relaxing and harmonic heaven in your private yard.

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Let’s Study in Japan!

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Visiting Japan in spring is one of my fondest dreams. Studying in Japan would be my second dream dearest to my heart. Becoming an exchange student or a scholar abroad has been an idea that I have toyed with in my college days. Unfortunately, I’m now past the age where I can avail of scholarships in Japan or anywhere else. For those who are still considering where to study abroad, here are some things that just might entice you to take a chance on studies in the land of the rising sun.

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Meditation and memory

Meditation is a wonderful method of helping the entire body to relax. Through some simple breathing exercises the body naturally feels the stress being released and for many people it allows them to be much more open and receptive. Meditation can also aid in helping with memory. When a person feels relaxed the memory seems to function much better. Through the use of breathing and concentration the memory feels alive and vibrant once again.

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The many benefits of meditation

While meditation is traditionally viewed as a spiritual practice, its physical and psychological benefits are enormous.

Reduce the stress in your life

There’s no doubt that the biggest threat to our physical, psychological and emotional well being in the modern age is stress. It’s a proven fact that meditation helps to reduce stress; leading to deeper levels of relaxation.

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Penjing: Philosophy, Meaning, and Style

Penjing, the ancient Chinese art of creating landscaped scenes with miniature gnarled trees and mindfully arranged rocks can be traced back to the Tang Dynasty of the seventh century.  Miniature stands of tall, narrow trees were displayed in colorfully decorated pots or trays (pen) presenting scenes (jing) of natural wilderness. The earliest drawing of penjing on record (706 A.D.) illustrates a maid carrying a tray of fruit trees and stones.

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Simplify

The tendency of life in our society is to become more complicated: Internet, television, shopping, work, family commitments, possessions, eating, debt … these things pile on top of each other endlessly.

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Wagashi, a simple Japanese gift

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Wagashi are Japanese confections served with tea that evolved through many centuries ago from the Chinese tea-house snacks called ‘dim sum’.  The word wagashi, derived from the words Japanese (Wa) and sweets (gashi), originated during the Meiji era (1868-1912) to distinguish the confections from European sweets.

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Bamboo Bonsai

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Bamboo, an evergreen plant that can be found growing in the woodlands of South and Central America as well as Africa and Asia. The Chinese see the Bamboo as a symbol of honesty, of eternal youth and Buddhist use Bamboo to help them achieve inner peace.

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Ikebana, the art of Japanese flower arranging

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A Tokonoma is a time-honored architectural detail of many older Japanese homes. These alcoves occupy a corner in a room, and often hold a scroll, an ikebana flower arrangement or other artwork. More than a display area, a tokonoma is seen as a sacred space that is not to be invaded, and the seat closest to it is often reserved for the most honored guests.

Ikebana is an important part of such a display. First developed by Chinese monks in the 1500s, its principles were a closely guarded secret for many centuries. When the art arrived in Japan, this method of floral arranging was practiced only by Japanese royalty and samurai families. Much later, it became better known to more people, spreading eventually to the West.

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