Sometimes I imagine myself back in this spot on the earth; the Zen garden at Ryoanji Temple in Kyoto, Japan. There’s something about it that is enigmatic and mysterious and at the same time really grounding and simple. Zen gardens are very precisely designed to bring you into the present moment and yet elevate your awareness simultaneously. I sat there for hours, taking it all in, imbibing its essence, sometimes alone, sometimes other people came and went. Breathing in, breathing out, merging with the essence of the place. Then I smiled, thinking how clever and mischievous the designers were, because in that particular garden, wherever you sit, whichever vantage point you have, you can see only 14 stones, but the garden has 15. It’s like the garden is silently telling you that you can go deep, but you never have the full picture. There’s always room for a little mystery, for imagination, for wonder. Therein lies the magic. I felt like the message was that to see the full picture you have to close your eyes, go within, expand your awareness internally, and there and only there, within you, is the answer. See with the eyes of your heart. It made me laugh out load. Maybe a bit of mystery is necessary in life to keep us wondering, questioning, discovering, and to keep us  humble.

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