Mind of Zen Calendar

Translation of the calligraphies of the "Mind of Zen" Calendar.


Often the actual words in the writiings are only hinted at, so by looking at the picture or by knowing the background story, 

can a well versed person imagine a translation of the art piece.

January - February

by Yamamoto Genpo

Matsu kokon no iro nashi



There is no past or present in the green of the pine.

The green of a pine tree does not change.
of course, there is no green that will stay green for eternity, yet it is about Buddha Nature. There is no past or present in Buddha Nature. That which is unchanging, is Buddha Nature.

March - April

By Suio san, Hakuin´s student


Sunawachi (hamaguri ) wo arawasu




The shell is bringing forth Kannon Sama



May - June

By Torei san

Shin no daimyo jin


The farmer brings forth all - as God does


Be thankful for the work of the farmers


July - August

By Hakuin Zenji

The wick of the candle needs to be cut at times for it to shine brightly

(it was made from paper in the past)


According to the cutting of the wick, the candle burns brightly


Old thoughts in our mind need to be cut as well for our mind to be fresh and bright again


September - October

By Genpo Roshi

Tsuki nagarete, mizu nagarezu


The water flows but the moon does not


Even if the surroundings change, your mind does not


November - December

By Hakuin Zenji


Everyone wants a good name and position


Which is no more than the name of some grass

(play with words in Japanese)