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Shakyo – Tracing the Sutras
27th June 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm UTC+1
Peaceful practice following the inspiring Four Vast Bodhisattva Vows
The practice of Shakyō is a meditative and spiritual practice offered in many temples in Japan. It often starts with reading or chanting then a bow before beginning to slowly trace the original text of a chosen Buddhist Sutra.
We will trace the famous Mahayana Buddhist vows (or wishes) which are short (just five lines including the title) but deep and expressive.
They convey the will to engage with Buddhist teachings and practices and help all beings to end suffering. 四弘誓願文 Shiguseiganmon is known in English as the Four Vows or Four Bodhisattva Vows, and is chanted around the world in many groups and temples.
People do this with care to mindfully copy each character, and often people find the experience is peaceful, and nourishes wellbeing. It doesn’t matter whether your writing is good, and you don’t need to have faith in Buddhism or knowledge of Japanese at all. Sutras can be copied in Japanese or English. For many people Shakyo can also be a dedication to their ancestors. And for monks it is a regular part of their temple activity.
This is a quiet practice harmonising body and mind, dating to around the 7th century Tang Dynasty, where you can grind your own ink and use a small calligraphy brush and Japanese paper, or alternatives.
No previous experience is needed. You don’t need to have calligraphy materials, you can take part with basic paper and either a brush pen or simply a pen or pencil. We will email you about what you can use in advance of the event. If you would like to find out more about previous Shakyo events please go to the Shakyo pages.
It will be led by Blair Thomson, a Glasgow Zen Group member who was instructed in Japanese temples.
Booking is through Eventbrite, after you book we will email you the Zoom link and details for the group. Sorry but tickets are non-refundable. Feel free to come early for a cuppa and settle in.
Blair organises, runs and co-runs several events, many of which are art and meditation related. Some are free community groups and others have an admission charge, most are through the D+P Studio and some Glasgow Zen Group. Please have a look at each event and feel free to come along and join!