Dohshi


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Photograph of Dohshi.

I feel like clinging to something I know will change me, but I don't know
how. I decided I"d try by living in an impoverished place where there was
no water supply, no electricity, and a subsistence unchanged from that of
thousands of years ago.

I'd wake up every morning in house with a dirt floor, where there was no
way to completely escape the elements. The water I drank was muddy and
scarce. The food I ate was plain. When I become sick, there was no
medicine or hospitals to look to for help. People locked in a daily
struggle for mere survival can rarely escape this kind of existence.

Where do they differ from me, I thought.

They have many siblings, though half of them will not live long.
For this reason, perhaps, they don't live in fear of death, nor are
obsessively attached to life. They simply live.

I even wonder if they do not regret having been born?
They live in a reality void of material assets except for their own bodies.
Life is lived fervently in hopes of someday arriving at that eternal place
where there is no suffering.

How do I appear to them?
Who am I? Who is Yamanaka?

I was moved by the sight of children covered in mud, dirt and scratches.
They didn't appear the least bit miserable, but live robustly. Their eyes
were marvelously pure, like incarnations of the Zenzaidohshi, children of
ancient times who had rid themselves of all desire in pursuit of the Way of
the Buddha.


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