Meditation is a treasured discipline within Buddhism. Guests at the Shukubo Ekoin Temple can experience Ajikan, an important style of mediation within Shingon Esoteric Buddhism.
“Ajikan is a meditation method in Esoteric Buddhism that involves gazing at ‘Aji’ (Sanskrit letters expressing Buddha Daiichi Nyorai written in a moon),” was the helpful explanation from deacon, Norihiro Miyama, as I began to take part in the experience.
“For those who cannot cross their legs we have cushions, and it is fine to keep your legs straight,” he said, and since there is also explanation in English for overseas visitors, everyone who takes part can relax and enter meditation.
By stabilizing the pelvis and adjusting balance in the backbone, strength concentrates below the navel, the spine becomes straight and it feels pleasant.
The correct posture involves crossing the legs with right leg above, making a circle with the hands with the right hand on top and placing them in front of the belly.
Gazing at the Aji with slightly opened eyes, you enter meditation while taking deep and slow breaths.
It was only 15 minutes, but the task of aligning my feelings in the tranquil Main Hall was a wonderful experience.
“In addition to the Main Hall, there is a room called the Ajikan Dojo. The Ajikan experience is carried out with Japanese and overseas guests separately. This is in order to explain the experience to overseas visitors in English,” said Mr. Miyama.
The Ajikan Dojo is a large room where around 50-60 people can meditate at one time.
Before COVID, there were many overseas guests, and it seems the Ajikan experience for overseas guests used to be carried out here.