Inside the history of Bonsai Symbolism is found in abundance.
Bonsai Symbolism – The Meaning of Bonsai
In definitions and the practice itself of Bonsai as well. The word bonsai is a Japanese word which literally translates to ”Tree Planted in a pot”. However, the meaning of Bonsai is so much more than that. This comes from the Chinese word Pen-zai. When the Japanese monks made pilgrimages to china they brought these miniature potted trees back to Japan as gifts. When it arrived in Japan this living art began to evolve to new levels.
See Bonsai was the ideal art for Japanese Culture. For example, look at the meaning of beauty in the Japanese language. There are three different words for beauty. Shizen no utsukushi-sa, beauty found in nature without the man’s influence. Hito ni yotte tsukura reta utsukushi-sa beauty created by man such as a painting or beautiful architecture. Finally Shizen is defined as Man interacting with nature but has an emphasis on respect for the natural world. It is the harmony of man and nature. Cannot be properly translated to English, but this is the beauty found in bonsai symbolism.
What Does Bonsai Mean to Me? Bonsai Symbolism in My life
I had two customers ask me this week about the symbolism of Bonsai. As I though about it, I realized Bonsai has multiple meanings to me, that it represents certain experiences and lessons in my life. Events in my life can often be represented by lessons found in various bonsai techniques. I remember my Mother always being very interested in eastern culture. When I was 11 years old I learned about the art from her.
Traditional Bonsai symbolism has certain fundamental concepts. Many of the same lessons apply to my life. These lessons of patience, balance, and harmony are replaying themes throughout my adult life and spiritual evolution as a human on this planet. Also I look back to my youth and remember my mom working hard but always working for herself. Being a small business owner often means working much harder than if you worked for some one else. I remember seeing her asleep at her office computer, working 14 hour days 6 days a week at times. I see this drive in myself and understand why she always emphasized such an importance on technology. She saw way back then that the world would be run by computers by the time I was an adult. That my proficiency in this area would play a big role if I was successful.
When I see the path of my life unfolding to include so many of my desires , I can’t help but feel she is watch over me. My Aunt and business partner Nandi helps make this possible. Although her and my Mother never met I can only imagine how well they would have gotten along. I don’t know where I would be today if it wasn’t for her support and guidance.