Kendo’s Healing Message for August

One of the most popular experiences for our guests at the Nagasaki Retreat is being in the grounds. They are treated much like the gardens in Buddhist temples in Japan – they are not over-cultivated, and there is nothing artificial or contrived – nature is left to express itself, and all that’s done is to keep things neat and tidy.

Because of this approach, the grounds are as close as possible to the most natural expression of themselves. Kendo is faithful to the Shinto ideal of being as hospitable as possible to every living thing in the grounds – it’s the best way to honour the spirit that each one possesses.

In many ways, this attitude is an act of humility towards nature – it’s also a gesture of respect. Kendo makes this clear when guests come to our Events, and a parallel is drawn to our own spirits; we cannot expect to be treated harmoniously by the universe around us unless we have that same attitude towards it.

Thus, the simplest thing in nature is a reminder of the potential we have for the most positive and complete relationship with the world around us, if we choose it to be so. Kendo recommends that making such a connection should be wordless – it should be intuitive, free from reasoning, unhurried, and mindful, like a good meditation.

Thus, Kendo advises, everything from a single cherry blossom to a mighty Atlas Cedar has the power to take us out of ourselves, to give us a deep peace through connecting with it as an equal in the whole of nature, and thus, Kyu Shin Do detachment and objectivity about our lives.

Kendo points out that you don’t need to be here to practise this healing detachment – taking a moment to contemplate anything in nature, from the smallest to the biggest, can re-connect us with the most natural and most powerful part of ourselves – our intuitive selves. Doing so regularly is powerfully enlightening and healing.

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