In this installment of “Gifts from My Teacher” we are sharing more about traditional Japanese items that are often part of martial art dojos (schools). This article is about the Dharma Doll and the Shiminawa Rope and Origami Lightening Bolts.
The red face doll is called a Dharma Doll. It is a Buddhist item which the Japanese people adopted into their Shinto practice. This doll represents the Buddha. The practice is to fill one of the blank eyes with black ink and make a wish. If the wish should come true within the year, you fill in the other blank eye with ink. Each new year you are to burn the doll and start again.
Above the Shito Shelf is a Shimenawa (twisted rope) holding Origami paper. This Origami paper is folded into shape representing lightning bolts which border between the spiritual realm and the material realm. Meaning anything on the shelf is of the spiritual world, while this side of the shelf is of the natural world.
Our discussion so far has been merely a cursory look at the Kamidana and its spiritual facets. We encourage you to take a deeper look with an open mind, if you are so inclined. You may find a lot of fascinating concepts.
In our next installment, we will share details about the emblem of Ten Chi Wa Taijutsu. Sensei Chadwick Minge designed the emblem for his dojo patch, and gifted us the plate template, which is now proudly displayed in our dojo located in Liberty Hill, Texas. The design features a Mythical Dragon, a Tiger, and the Kanji Wa.
Watch for the next installment soon!
You can see previous installments in this series by going to our Martial Arts Blog page.
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