CM: In his capacity as President of Yakumo-kai, The Hearn Society of Japan, Koshin Kawatsu contributed to The Open Mind of Lafcadio Hearn exhibition his calligraphic ideogram of 'En', the Japanese word for 'karma', which translates variously as fate; chance connection; and blood ties. Being a Sanskrit word meaning wilful action that is fateful rather than incidental, karma became one of Lafcadio's favorite words. In 1890, while still in New York, before travelling to Japan, Lafcadio wrote his novel entitled Karma. To the ordinary Buddhist, karma serves as a deterrent, while to an intellectual it serves as an incentive to make good. I n its Japanese version En is symbolic of the Izumo (Matsue) province. The Gods of Izumo are well known as 'go-between', which describes a metaphysical connection that brings an awareness of transcending to a sacred beyondness. Lafcadio visited and loved these gods' shrines: the Izumo-Taisha, one of the biggest Shinto shrines in Japan; and the Yaegaki-Jinjya, well known as the shrine of 'go-between'. Today still, young people make pilgrimages to both these shrines. In the context of Lafcadio, Kawatsu's En is the 'go-between' of Greece and Japan.
[Megakles Rogakos 07/2009]
ROGAKOS, MEGAKLES The Open Mind of Lafcadio Hearn 2009 The American College of Greece - ACG Art, Athens