Ikkyu Sojun’s poetry is irreverent and iconoclastic, bitingly critical of false piety, hypocrisy, and formalistic religion. His poetry is often frankly erotic, sometimes. convolutions of fourteenth-century Japan and the organizational shenanigans of the official Rinzai Zen sect—was the legendary Ikkyu Sojun (). Browse through Ikkyu Sojun’s poems and quotes. 8 poems of Ikkyu Sojun. Still I Rise, The Road Not Taken, If You Forget Me, Dreams, Annabel Lee.

Author: Gale Digar
Country: Haiti
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Travel
Published (Last): 18 March 2006
Pages: 132
PDF File Size: 7.56 Mb
ePub File Size: 1.73 Mb
ISBN: 318-1-87182-237-9
Downloads: 69530
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Akijas

Sex, Zen, and Poetry. The Life of Ikkyu Sojun

Wu-an’s strength of mind is illustrated by a story related in Collcutt, “Zen Monastic Institution in Medieval Japan,” p. By age eleven he was studying the Vimalakirti Sutra and by thirteen he was intensively reading and writing Chinese poetry.

Everything grows out of empty space from which all forms derive. Ikkyu’s enlightenment occurred in his twenty-sixth year when, while meditating in the boat, he was startled by the cry of a crow. He notes that the “red strings” of the second line refer to the ties of physical attachment to women that drew Ikkyu from the temple to the pleasure quarters. This Chinese monk, merely one of many in his native China, had become head of the leading Zen temple in Japan.

In the Mongols launched another invasion force, this timemen strong, but they were held off several weeks by the steel-nerved samurai until a typhoon later named the Kamikaze or “Divine Wind” providentially sank the fleet. That old madman from Chen reallty startled the crowds. His antics, parading through the streets waving a sword or carrying a human skull, and his numerous affairs with prostitutes celebrated in his poems, were presented as methods of understanding true Zen.


The ceremony began to be used in religious rituals in Zen Buddhist monasteries.

Ikkyu Sojun – Ikkyu Sojun Poems – Poem Hunter

But the gozan priests seemed to concern themselves more and more with trivialities. The realm of sights and sounds is endless, Yet, imperceptively, a sojjun note crystallizes. When his purse “went flat,” he would ikkyk to the capital and sell incense or cheap clothing to poor housewives—afterwards returning to the monastery in the same straw sandals, hat, and cloak.

Jan Covell Zen at Daitoku-ji, p. In her only surviving letter, written shortly before her death, she urged Ikkyu to become such an outstanding priest that he might consider Shaka and Daruma, fathers of Zen Souun, his servants Keene, ; Qui, The man drove him away, but when he returned the following day in the luxurious robe of a Buddhist prelate, he was invited in for a banquet.

But his feelings about being an abbot remained mixed as his bitter poems from this period shows. He iikyu under a newly arrived Chinese master whose limited Japanese necessitated their communicating through a translator.

In Rinzai Zen tradition, he is both heretic and saint. Each Oiemoto also receive a Zen name from Daitoku-ji, this is often the ikkyyu they are known. Ikkyu favored brothels over temples as places to meditate. Then she ran him off and burnt his hut to the ground. Shock served Ikkyu well. The man who is concerned only with expedients is no better than a dung-fly.


He is also known as Ikkyuu Zenji. Historical information on Ikkyu and his writings is spread among various documents of uneven reliability.

He was not alone, however, as he had a regular circle of notable artists and poets from that era. Blows”, which depicts Tozan becoming enlightened when Ummon rebukes him for wandering from one monastery to the another. A number of his poems touch on these images.

His verse is immediate, poignant, insightful, and at times moving. Lost among refugess, the rural priest takes comfort.

Ikkyu Sojun

Thus began the next phase of early Japanese Zen, fueled by the invasion of Chinese Ch’an monks. Additionally, Ikkyu painted with ink. It was used among the barbarians on the borders of China and was renowned for its sad sound. Retrieved from ” https: Use the code “daniele” at checkout for a discount here’s the awesome Datsusara animation of a Drunken Taoist episode by Paul Klawiter: For somun questions, email me at bodhi yahoo.

However, although Rinzai Zen had made much ikoyu headway in Japan—the ruling classes increasingly meditated on koans, and Chinese monks operated new Sungstyle monasteries—the depth of understanding seems disappointingly superficial overall. In many ways, Japanese Zen became decadent almost from the start.

Author: admin