Abundant blessings

IB is home. He landed in Chicago about 10:30 last night, after almost 27 hours of travel. He looked tired, but fit and bright. We met him with some friends, a large banner supported by our efforts on Google Translate, personalized flags, and John Philip Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever” powered by bluetooth speakers. He craved the taste of a hot dog on the way home so we stopped at a late-night diner near his old apartment where he ordered two of them and lots of fries.

This morning he was up early and we have worked most of the day to make his old room, for the past several years a gallery for JB and me, a space he can live in for a bit. We have reorganized boxes of his possessions that he left behind, crammed into the garage and his old closet. He has many creative plans for his life and will move out again after those plans have clarified and solidified more.

Before breakfast this morning he gave us a most amazing gift, something we looked at when we were in Japan– a sacred Shinto/ Buddhist miniature chime/ gong. These are used on buddhist and/or shinto altars after lighting a stick of incense. Then one claps ones hands together twice and prays as long as the sound lasts. The gong is a half sphere which hangs upside down, balanced on a pin whose base is nearly the rest of the sphere. The hammer with which one hits the sphere is wood, whose tip is weighted with brass.

We have placed this sacred instrument in the sitting space upstairs near Basho’s banana tree. I will strike the gong each morning to start my day, reminding myself of the beauty and kindness of Japan, the need to still and center self, the joy in a journey’s homecoming, and the abundant blessings of the meaningful and loving relationships in my life.

This entry was posted in Buddha, family, Japan, sacred and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Abundant blessings

  1. Beautiful chime. Exactly how long will you have to pray?

  2. Jerome Bloom says:


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