Winter Is Here

Winter is here in the Pacific Northwest! In the old Japanese calendar, this period is known as rittō (立冬, “first winter”). My gardening book mentioned that historically frost comes around here typically on November 17th, and I was quite surprised to see that it really happened:

The trees around my son’s elementary school were beautiful in the winter frost too. I started keeping a gardening journal to keep track of local weather patterns, how the plants in the garden are doing, what works and what doesn’t.

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of activity, both good and bad. I celebrated my birthday recently, and got some great history books, but I also managed to back my car into the garage door (it was opening, but hadn’t fully come up when my car clipped it). We’ve seen some pretty rough rain storms lately, but also the winter weather has been beautiful too. I pulled a muscle pretty badly last week, but on the other hand, I’ve been getting plenty of exercise.

I’ve seen plenty of ups and downs lately, but such is the eight winds of life.

On a spiritual note, I enjoy focusing on devotional services to Kannon Bodhisattva (my other favorite Buddhist figure) lately. Because Kannon is popular among nearly all Buddhist schools and traditions, it doesn’t have some of the dogmatic “baggage” associated with other deities, so it’s easy to take up devotion practices to Kannon while allowing you to pursue other Dharma Gates within Buddhism.

Taken in 2011 at Daienji Temple (大円寺) in Tokyo, Japan. It is still one of my favorite works of Buddhist art that I have seen in Japan.

So, namu kanzeon bosatsu and best wishes to readers!

Published by Doug

🎵Toss a coin to your Buddhist-Philhellenic-D&D-playing-Japanese-studying-dad-joke-telling-Trekker, O Valley of Plentyyy!🎵He/him

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