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Only the phrase, "shikin..."

Posted on: 2003/3/25 19:25
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I recall Hatsumi Sensei once wrote an extended piece on just the word, "shikin". He pointed out that shikin could mean "the epicenter of an earthquake" or "place in which something originates". He mentioned that during taijutsu training, a shikin could originate from the cochlea or inner ear, when the rhythm of true combat has entered the person.

He seemed to be outlining a sort of satori "sudden enlightenment" as they call it in the Zen tradition. I recall one Zen parable where the student and master were having a fierce debate. The master was standing on a balcony, and the student was standing on the ground below. The master suddenly leapt off the balcony to land on the student and broke both of the student's legs. At that moment, so the story goes anyway, the student attained enlightenment.

Posted on: 2003/4/4 4:20
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Hocus Pocus
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Quote:
my friend told me that the phrase just means
"Hoccus poccus" or something (he's japanese)
and couldnt explain it in a better way.

It certainly sounds like the meaning of the phrase is a bit obscure even to the Japanese. Actually, the words Hocus Pocus probably originally comes from the mass - Hoc est corpus... so in a way, your friends translation maybe was more accurate than he thought it was.

Posted on: 2004/2/16 21:13
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Re: Shiken Haramitsu Daikomyo!
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Can someone enlighten me on the signicance of the clapping?

Around the world the prayer posture is widely seen, but clapping I dont recognise.

Is it the noise itself that is significant, or does it stem from the symbolic embrace (like applauding).

I know this isnt language specific but I also wondered if the clapping had a special name?

Domo arigato

Posted on: 2004/2/22 0:41
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Re: Shiken Haramitsu Daikomyo!
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To Ethos-T:

Your question is fully answered by the very good answer of Tokumei (see at the bottom of his long posting).



Posted on: 2004/2/22 1:11
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Re: Shiken Haramitsu Daikomyo!
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I'm not sure if it is true, but I heard that part of the phrase is a Japanese conversion of an original Sanskrit phrase. That might be why native Japanese speakers do not understand it? My Japanese teacher in college didn't understand it either when I asked her.

- Joe

Posted on: 2004/2/22 7:31
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Re: Shiken Haramitsu Daikomyo!
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Quote:

Ethos-T wrote:
Can someone enlighten me on the signicance of the clapping?


In the book "A Year in the Life of a Shinto Shrine," the 2 claps/bow/clap is explained thus (at least in that particular shrine):

2 claps: yin and yang
bow: reverence
1 clap: integration of yin and yang into one

Pretty cool. Don't know if it's the same reason we have the same sequence or not.

Posted on: 2004/2/23 7:31
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Re: Shiken Haramitsu Daikomyo!
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I have also heard that the clapping is done to awaken/alert the kami/spirits so that they may hear your prayer.

- Joe

Posted on: 2004/2/23 8:12
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Re: Shiken Haramitsu Daikomyo!
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Quote:

muzosa wrote:
In the book "A Year in the Life of a Shinto Shrine," the 2 claps/bow/clap is explained thus (at least in that particular shrine):

2 claps: yin and yang
bow: reverence
1 clap: integration of yin and yang into one

Pretty cool. Don't know if it's the same reason we have the same sequence or not.


Interesting enough. It is just another sign of the fact that shintô and buddhism, as well as other asian phylosophies, aren't seperable in the Japanese ways of viewing.

1. Clapping = shintô
2. Shikin haramitsu daikomyô = buddhism (haramitsu is, btw in sanscrit "paramita")
3. In yô (Jap. for Yin Yang) = tao


Posted on: 2004/2/23 9:49
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Re: Shiken Haramitsu Daikomyo!
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Jeff,

You mentioned A Year in the Life of a Shinto Shrine. I'll look that one up.

I always wondered why the two claps, one bow, one clap rule was observed. That explanation sounds good, but maybe that's not the only explanation. Often there are variations of the clap and bow ritual at the shrines. For instance, at Chiba Shrine in Chiba City, you are to bow twice. I couldn't read the whole instruction (my kanji is spotty), but maybe somebody else knows the significance of paying reverence twice.

The first written source in English that I read that covered the topic of syncretism (a blending of philosophies or religious systems) was Carmen Blacker's The Catalpa Bow. She treats on the history of the blend of Buddhism and Shinto. She cites lots of examples of Shinto shamans and Buddhist priests working together. These threads get so tangled up that they're hard to extract one from the other.

About the prayer itself, as far as I know, the word haramitsu is a Japanified version of paramita, a Sanskrit word which means something like `supreme quality`.

Does anybody know the kanji for Shikin?

Posted on: 2004/2/23 10:56
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