Yoshizen's Blog

Sound of the Earth

BBC R3-A09A7501
In the past year or so, the BBC Radio-3 is sounding the birds song in the morning.  Birds song from the countryside and from all over the world.  

Being ex-climber myself, those kinds of sounds are rather familiar.  Not mention in the mountain, when I was traveling on the Eurail-Pass, I often used long distance overnight train.  Train will reach the destination early morning (5:00 ~6:00 kind), before the town get up.  I waited the shops to open, sitting in a park where the air was filled with the birds song. (in fact, mostly the Black Bird) 

So, that was my start of the day.  (What’s my day then was = first, buy a bread and the fruits drink etc, then go to the tourist’s information to get the map of the town — and start the tour of the town visiting / listen the church pipe organ, and so on.  Often go up the back hill of the town to have an over all view of the place. ( = We can have a great view from the hills of the Rhine River.)

—– Anyway, and what so ever the life you have.  Just enjoy those sounds.  (Listen the Radio is straight forward but if you are in the office etc, the other choice is on the Net — “sound of the earth, BBC, radio-3” though, you may asked to register / DL the Flash player etc a bit cumbersome.) 

Have a good morning listen. 

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Tea Ceremony — 茶の湯、侘び助

In relation to the Sazanka post, I was looking around the Camellia flower items in the Wiki.    There are many funny stories about a mystical rare variety of the Camellia called Wabi-suke.  

You may vaguely know about Japanese Tea Ceremony — how it was refined and sophisticated etc and saw many photos of the Tea bowl, Tea room and its garden, though you may not having any idea, who actually taking part of those gatherings in the time of Samurai era.

—– In reality, if you imagine a kind of political, financial salon or a gentleman’s club = it must be the closest.  The Tea master, who host the ceremony, was THE power dealer pull the string.    The higher the reputation of the Tea master, the guest or friend is high in the position.  The Load of the country could meet the other lord in a completely isolated, safe environment such as a Tea hut in a temple.  (Anybody go into the room has to take off their sword and kneeling into the small room.)  Tea master arranged the meeting in certain intention.  So, an alliance deal could be made or needy War Lord could meet rich merchant and able to borrow lots of gold for a war operation etc etc.

Naturally, there was an ugly battle between the Tea masters, Who is the most prominent.   So, to have more valuable Tea bowl in “Wabi” became a harsh competition. = Who could offer the highest price for a bowl, kind of the battle. 

—– then, a new variety of Camellia, which doesn’t fully open its small flower was introduced into the cercle.  The flower got instant hype “This flower shows really held back humble shape.  This is THE flower to be seen in the supreme tea place”.  The particular flower was named “Wabi-suke”.  Imagine, if the Lord was greeted by a bunch of flower worth thousand of gold — guess, its effect. 

So, the shady battle to get hold the flower was fought among the Tea masters which involved even fraudulent flower growers who try to trick with sham branch with huge price.  (Think, the Black Tulip hype in the 18C Europe = when the big money involved, it creates crazy hype.) —— The trouble was that the “Wabi-suke” was not an established variety, (even worse, the definition was rather vague, such as “Smaller” and “Flower wouldn’t be fully open” kind = such flower could be just a result of a malnutrition or lack of water, and similar flower could be produced by temporary hybrid — but never repeated again and so on — etc !) —– So, even today, some says “I believe this is “Wabi-suke” but others sees not or “My one is Wabi-suke” but others doesn’t agree —– People could see every DNA of the “reputedly” or “claimed to be” Wabi-suke though, no-one is shure which one is true Wabi-suke.   It’s so funny.)   😀

(Now you must become aware, Tea Ceremony, Tea Masters are not necessary peaceful decent kind. — could have been a center of conspiracy.   In real histories, the association of War load (even Shogun) and the Tea master, Zen monk as an Adviser or Strategist was well-known.)    😀  

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Ideally ~~~~ or Typical

Think, about your own life, — how can it be “Ideally” re-organized.    Then think about how is your typical daily life ?  —– In either case you may need to think quite deep.

—– So, how about, can you imagine “Typical Buddhist” or “typical Muslim man” ? You may say that you don’t know about them deep enough, or you might draw an image of a caricature = funny exaggeration based on the popular stereotype.   As those Notion of Ideal, or Typical kind were artificially created abstract notions for the convenience of communication or try to show how I am intelligent, they never represent a reality.    Real truth is always stays few steps behind of “Ideal” or “Typical” —– and we all know it.

So, the obvious FACT is, what so ever the imagination you have made-up here just now, in the actual daily life, you ARE just carry on your same old daily Life = You must be realized here, extreme or exaggerated idea came up when you INTENTIONALLY THINK = otherwise you are not having such image or notion = In a real daily life, you ARE living without any artificial conscious of “I AM carrying out my living operation”.  —– As a matter of FACT, while reading this blog, you are even NOT aware of YOU are reading this.   While away from intentional thinking, we ARE naturally following the way of the commonsense or what the Buddhists call Dharma.  Of which we unconsciously follow.

This IS what all about of SELFLESSNESS, and the real situation of the Middle way. (Both extreme were created by the intentional thinking = live without such thinking  (Selfless Mushin)  we can follow the Dharma and it IS the very Middle Way.

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Bach — Bernstein — Gould — Zen

Oh my Goodness.    I bumped this old film clip, on Youtube = Leonard Bernstein and Glenn Gould talked about J.S.Bach.
Film was shot on 57 years ago, 1960 then Glenn Gould was 28.   Naturally the film showed the two’s younger looks but what surprised me most was, on that time Bernstein was already “the Educator Bernstein” and Gould was “the Only one, Gould”.

(Other nearby Youtube posts, Gould or Bernstein posts are very educative and highly recommended to watch !)
In fact, me to encounter Bach first time was in the Fellini’s film, “La Dolce Vita” —– in the film, a gossip journalist, Marcello met a church organist and the organist played Bach’s music, Toccata and Fugue in D-miner (the most famous and popular organ music — famous still it was the first encounter to my 15-years-old ear)   (incidentally, that the same actor who played the organist later appeared in the other film “Emanuel” as a sex-gulu ! )

I think, it was the early 90s, I listened a BBC annual radio 3 event, the Christmas Lecture, Bernstein talked about the structure and the music language.  It opened my eyes. —– in fact, it taught me more about our emotion than of the music. —– If the music could expect the same effect, it is the proof of that our emotional pattern is much simpler = such as how we feel from major or minor key, even B-miner is associated with the feeling of death ! — how accurate his view was the other matter, but such a view-point to analyze the relation of us to the music was a shock to me. 

So that, that was the same stance, how and why I adapted my view toward the Zen = instead to see it as a holly spiritual mumbo-jumbo but the scientific / medical phenomenon of the neuro-physical function.

Amazingly looks ordinary young man, Gould was already a master of the finger of a Harpsichordist and already know what is the Bach = mean what he is going to do with him = the man aware of his own karma.  (People became aware of their own karma on their later life —– I wonder how he found it in such early life ?)

***** PS:   Related post (following links)  J.S.Bach,  Aaaaaa~~~~~!  are highly recommended post to go. (They clearly explain what I said here.)

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Baby Corn

Baby Corn-DSC07161

While taking the husk out of the corn (on the cob = maize = indian corn) I found something the addition on the bottom of it. —– They were the baby corn.    I’m not sure whether this is the way how baby corn was grow (and harvested)   Then I realized that they are just a miniature version of the normal corn = nothing else.  They are not wearing a wig for the weekend.  They carry the exactly the same task = fertilize the each grain of the corn.  Same as the human foetus having all the organs = heart to the brain, baby corn expect and prepare to become full-sized corn.  Baby corn is not a joke.  (Don’t you know, if you give enough water and the sunlight, the each sprouts will grow to full size cabbage ! —– I’m just kidding.   😀 )

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August Moon


August Moon   (In few days time it would be a new moon —– so, a solar eclipse is coming.)      In Japan 15th August is the Moon Festival though, in the Moon Calender, it is in the September.  But I’m not sure how many people still remember this.  —– They might be thinking more if north korean missile is coming, when they see the sky now. —— Lunatic isn’t it.

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PS : The photo above which was taken by the Tamuron SP 500 mm F8 Mirror lens shows the Red and Blue fringe = it is a chromatic aberration.     This is a reputed to be one of the best 500 mm mirror lens in the history, —– I couldn’t accept such flaw in this lens = I may need to check if any loose element in the lens occurred ?   (By the way, why this photo is not as sharp as the other photo “Red Moon” is, this one was taken through the double grazed window —– Red Moon was taken while window was fully opened.  😀  )

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Onion Business


Some time, I had to buy the onions from a street open stole, which has been wet by the passing shower.   Of course I have a choice to go to super market but I’m not such fussy.  (The same onion could be half of the price on the street — still, it would be only a matter of 10P 20P kind of money.) —– Then what will happen to that wet onion IS a bit different story. = I peel off all the wet skin and made them dry.   With wet skin, onion would get rotten easily = so, why not to make them naked. —– You might say why DO I choose to have so much trouble,  just because I didn’t buy dry onions from a roofed shop while paying 10P more. —– Is that true ?    AM I doing  more with wet onions ?    Whether it is a dry one or wet onion, we need to peel off exactly the same number of the skin = only the difference IS to do it now in advance or later.     Without seeing this, most of the people who saw my naked onion just got shocked.  Very Very funny.   😀    This IS the typical sample of,  how our mind was stacked with a preconception and couldn’t see even a plain truth. —– Open your eyes.   😀

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July Moon

I don’t think I got any obligation to follow the moon — still, as I saw it, and I took pictures.  ( but very brief moment.)  I think may be I saw it less than a minuets or two. 

And when I mounted my 500mm lens onto the camera, soon she disappeared behind the clouds and never come out again.) —– ?  so, what’s the problem ? 

Nothing.    (I just missed the photo. —– What’s the problem ?   Nothing )

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Throw a stone

The words here “Throw a stone” is a metaphor or a symbol indicating that there is a meaning behind of such action — in Zen term, a Direct Transmission.  Why Direct Transmission ? — Because the words couldn’t convey the meaning behind or such meaning would be lost if it was expressed in the words. 

After many years, I suddenly realized that Lord Buddha never spoken about the Concept or the Idea conceived in the mind other than in the metaphoric stories.  His teachings were doing or show what or how to do.  And never explained what its action for or meanings of it.  So that, the Disciples were guessing or making their own interpretation if not their own understanding. —– The most of the scriptures were such kind of interpretations or guess-works and very little real teachings of Buddha was recorded because of very few could manage to catch the meaning behind, let alone describe them in the scripture.  (So that, the Buddhism has been surrounded by the mountain of buzz-words created by a superficial capturing such as Selfless, No-thinking, Mushin, Dedication, Self-sacrifice, Detauchment, No-greed, No-emotion, No-fear, Mindfulness, Middle way, — etc etc.)

In deed, Lord Buddha didn’t teach  the meaning or the intention behind of his teachings.  BECAUSE to explain such meaning WILL destroy the teaching itself. (It was recorded in the scripture typically as “Unanswered Questions” =  the abstract, imaginary notions such as an idea of  SELF or theoretical existence like an Infinity, were completely ignored by him.)

—– Do something, JUST do something without do other than DO, = such as to take a bicycle and ride, and go shopping.  When you do such riding, you ARE not thinking how to ride, how to push the feet or take a balance = because, you do it without any conscious “Let alone any conscious of I’m DOING the bicycle ride” = In fact, you ARE doing it without your SELF.  AS this IS the evidence of that the SELF IS not exists, and the idea of the SELF was a creation of your conscious or IMAGINATION.  Since the SELF is not exists, the notion or its word is not exists either (in other words, they were INTENTIONALY created to deal with those notion.) = Therefore, it IS not possible to explain the idea of “There is no SELF” = you can’t explain this without using the notion or the word SELF other than you yourself realize that you ARE riding the bicycle without the conscious of SELF.  Lord Buddha taught his followers to learn it through the action (or a kind of repeating practice — mind you there wasn’t a bicycle then.  😀 ) —– still, how his teachings was successful or succeeded was quite questionable = AND as he was aware of it, he had to leave the very last words “Don’t take the other’s words, learn it by YOURSELF” —– The history of the Buddhism showed nothing but the silly misunderstanding or more precisely the lack of understanding among the followers since then.   (I’ll show it with the most typical sample of “Middle way” in the next post.)

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Ultra Wide Angle Lens (Sony 12~24mm F4 Zoom)

I had an opportunity to test an ultra wide-angle lens, Sony 12~24mm F4 lens.  With its spec, the lens was amazingly light (in comparison to similar Nikon or Canon lens, it only half of the weight.  And smaller.)  Mounted on Sony A7R body, its handling balance was very comfortable. And function well.

Though, the image itself, the 12mm lens’ 120° view is not so new to the man using 15mm lens or fisheye lens almost like an everyday occurrence for the past 40, 50 years, looks nothing special.

Sony-12(3)-DSC06720

To make the view with a big distortion of perspective or looks more natural is not difficult at all. (in fact, it would be only few degree of the camera angle or move the position few steps away.)

Sony-12(3B)-DSC06721The lens was supposedly a rectilinear, not fisheye though, having rather prominent barrel distortion.  (Both Nikon and Canon seems to have about the same distortion) (All the pictures here showd quite of a vignetting (corners getting darker) because of they were taken with fully open F4 = so, the shutter speed was 1/3000th kind and the water splash became the dot ! )

Sony-12(4)-DSC06728

The lens said to have some measure of dust and water protection though, we better not to trust them.  Simply because, we the user will be the one who suffer with the trouble, and the service charge of the Sony is three times more expensive (Any service start with £90 deposit and another £90 for repair — even for just tighten-up a screw !)

The image which give you the impact or pressure may not necessary be created by the lens, it is simply the matter of subject or the landscape.  (You have to find the “impressive subject” first.   😀 )

But I’m not implying you to feel any impact here.    😀

(You know, it IS a joke = Ultra wide-angle or Fisheye is easy to make a joke as they can twist the view very easily.  In other words, often it is very tricky to show the natural view without any exaggeration.  Such as, that the lens can take a picture of very confined place though, it would give a false impression, as if it was a wide space.)

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