Lara. J. Fuller :I have been writing poetry for a year and taken part in public poetry readings as well as joining a poetry group on a monthly basis. Also I have a poem published in a local magazine called ‘Seaside News’. My favourite poets are Wordsworth, Dylan Thomas and a few other classics as well such as Shelley. To extend my love of poetry I write, manage a poetry Facebook page and have received positive comments as well as a growing number of followers. Here is the link below if you wish to have a browse. I recently had a haiku published on ‘Anna’s Poetry Live’ blog in aid of a Haiku walking Tour for Charity (Please note the name ‘Beasley’ is my maiden name but I wish to be known under my marital name ‘Fuller’). Also I have an Author’s Profile on ‘Tales from Wales’. https://www.facebook.com/churchwrite/
Haiku is Mindfulness
The purpose of this article is assessing whether there is a direct link to Haiku and Mindfulness as we explore different theories. Haiku has existed in Japanese and Chinese culture for many centuries. It began with ‘waka’, which were lyrical poems linked to ceremonial rituals, performed by Buddhists and Shinto. Over the sixteenth century began a new formation called Hokku, which were a three triplet poetic form, until it was shortened to the Haikai, where the season word (Kiji) and cutting word (kireji) were beginning to take shape. (http://www.webexhibits.org/poetry/explore_famous_haiku_background.html).
Eventually, this beautiful form of poetry became accessible to the peasants as well as those considered of importance and Bash leading a simple but spiritual life learned from his Master called Matsunaga Teitoku about such values. Today people are still turning to forms of meditation to help ease the stresses of everyday life, and whichever God you worship the context is still the same: returning to nature.
The reason I became interested in Haiku was to bring about a sense of peace within my own soul whilst observing the world around me, as I am living in an age where technology tends to leads us away from those very things. Some theologists believe we are living in a world which is hallmarked by instant gratification and by not looking ahead. We only need to look at nature, though it can be inward as well as outward: a seed to a sapling, a sapling to a full grown tree, and we ourselves take time to blossom. Here is my Haiku below to explain my point further;
creasing joint and limb
Within us are inbuilt schemas where we all share different beliefs and have goals that we wish to achieve in life. Plato described mankind as ‘Man is made of an eternal soul trying to break free …’ (http://www.gospelconversations.com/the-theology-and-psychology-of-hope/).
Hope is something that is a common goal mankind often shares. According to studies carried out by Lesia Aitken, who is a Clinical Phycologist and Christian, she now believes that hope is made up of these three things;
• A narrative of future possibilities.
• Connecting certain emotions to that outcome.
• Needing an agency, for example, either yourself or someone else to solve those difficulties.
Lesia also devised a questionnaire for her research and asked people what they thought was the meaning of hope was, and the most common answer was a relationship. Basically, we need each other, human companionship, to know that we are not alone in this world. That can also take on the form of a religion and if that were to be the case, a higher power is sometimes needed.
I attend a local Valley and Vale Art Club every Wednesday morning with my husband and it very much feels like one big family. Having facilitated a few basic Haiku workshops within the group, we all felt a sense of achievement, which can continue forwards for the rest of our lives. We have a default network in our brains where memories create an impact, twice as much as fear. (http://www.gospelconversations.com/the-theology-and-psychology-of-hope/). As Tertullian quoted ‘Hope is patience with your lamp lit’.
Information can be stored in other ways, such as repetition, as the more we carry out tasks, the more likely we are to remember them; patterns such as words that can trigger certain stimulus that enhances our memories. (http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/science/add_ocr_pre_2011/brain_mind/memoryrev2.shtml). Words themselves can create shapes and a Haiku and a Tanka are perfect examples of that, as they conjure certain images within our minds.
By looking at the evidence we see there is a connection, no matter how direct or indirect, to each individual. Wherever we decide to plant our roots, nature is all around. I believe one of the most important things we can do in life is to give each other hope and whether that is in writing Haiku or in any other form of media, it is a path towards that very goal.
Since we are very big on ‘feelings’ it is surprising how technology is helping us to avoid this very subject. According to an article supplied by Vox, Michael Bess, a Historian and Scientist declared ‘…I think it’s going to force us to reassess who we are and what it means to be human’ such as exploring genetic modification and bioelectric implants. (https://www.vox.com/technology/2018/2/23/16992816/facebook-twitter-tech-artificial-intelligence-crispr). Our brains are the most natural and greatest form of machinery and should be used to our advantage for the sake of present and future.