Japan art, China, and Zen Buddhism: Hakuin Ekaku (1686-1769) 

Japan art, China, and Zen Buddhism: Hakuin Ekaku (1686-1769) Lee Jay Walker  Modern Tokyo Times  Hakuin Ekaku (1686-1769) was a highly revered Zen Buddhist who utilized art, calligraphy, and other cultural angles to promote Buddhism. Rinzai Buddhism was stagnating because many ordinary people felt isolated. Therefore, Hakuin – and Sengai Gibon (1750-1837), a fellow Rinzai…

Japanese Buddhism and art: Hakuin Ekaku and Chinese philosophy

Japanese Buddhism and art: Hakuin Ekaku and Chinese philosophy Lee Jay Walker Modern Tokyo Times The revered Zen Buddhist, Hakuin Ekaku (1686-1769), understood the importance of connecting with ordinary people. Hence, under his tutelage and wisdom, he helped to restore the vitality of Rinzai Buddhism that was stagnating.  Hakuin was born in Hara in the province…

Japanese art: The desolate Japanese Buddhist path

Japanese art: The desolate Japanese Buddhist path Lee Jay Walker Modern Tokyo Times Sawako Utsumi is a gifted contemporary Japanese artist. In her latest art piece, titled “The desolate Japanese Buddhist path,” Utsumi once more fuses culture, nature, and Buddhism. Ironically, she does this despite being a follower of Shintoism.  This concerns her connection with old Buddhism that…

Art of Japan: Beauty in simplicity!

Art of Japan: Beauty in simplicity! Lee Jay Walker Modern Tokyo Times The delightful school of rinpa (rimpa) art covers a notable art form that hails from Japan. Rinpa spans many centuries and in modern times this art form continues to represent Japanese high culture. Therefore, international and internal exhibitions continue to inspire. Nichiren Buddhism…

Art of Japan and the legacy of Buddhism and culture

Art of Japan and the legacy of Buddhism and culture Lee Jay Walker Modern Tokyo Times The impact of Buddhism on the art of Kaihō Yūshō (1533-1615) is abundantly obvious and the same applies to the role of this faith throughout his life. Of course, Yūshō isn’t alone when it comes to the enormous impact…

Buddhist Art, Sesshū Tōyō, and entrapment of time: Is Huike paying respect to Bodhidharma?

Buddhist Art, Sesshū Tōyō, and entrapment of time: Is Huike paying respect to Bodhidharma? Lee Jay Walker Modern Tokyo Times The Japanese artist, Sesshū Tōyō (1420-1506), never questioned the Buddhist faith but in an artistic sense, he felt constrained by the time of his day. Indeed, the stunning and intriguing art piece titled Huike Offering…

Art of Sengai Gibon and Rinzai Buddhism: Buddhist Contemplation and Artistic Outreach

Art of Sengai Gibon and Rinzai Buddhism: Buddhist Contemplation and Artistic Outreach Lee Jay Walker Modern Tokyo Times   The inner-soul of Sengai Gibon (1750-1837) was always multidimensional and the flow that linked all fusions was Buddhism. Artistic wise, we will never know the real capabilities of Sengai because his art and writings were based…

Japan and the Spirituality of Mountain Art: Buddhism, Shintoism, and Reflections

Japan and the Spirituality of Mountain Art: Buddhism, Shintoism, and Reflections Lee Jay Walker Modern Tokyo Times Mount Fuji in Japan is a national symbol that signifies many things to respective individuals. Yet, irrespective of the ideas generated, it is clear that national identity and spirituality predominate. Therefore, the mystery of mountains in Japan –…