Now that these cherry blossoms have vanished, the videos I took while lying beneath them remain as a reminder of Roshi Pat Enkyo O’Hara’s words to me:
“The Japanese see cherry blossoms as a symbol of our lives,” Roshi explained. “They come at the very early part of the spring, when it’s cold. Their beauty makes you want to cry.”
I thought of how I’d meditated in my front yard, under thousands of cherry blossoms.
“One of the reasons why we cry is that these blossoms are so ephemeral,” Roshi continued. “They will fall,” she said simply. “And to watch the cherry blossoms fall is like watching ourselves die. We start off young and beautiful. Then we become middle aged and beautiful in a different way. Eventually we’re old and beautiful, and finally we’re dead and beautiful.”
(If you watch carefully, you can catch a couple of petals falling early on in the video)
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