daruma is the father of zen buddhism. as with many religious figures, his "likeness" is represented across a variety of icons. for the first time last week i learned some very interesting facts about one type of icon -- the daruma doll.
in japan, daruma dolls hold special significance for those embarking on new ventures or who find themselves in a period of transition (here's a short blog post i wrote on the subject). i particularly like the fact that new daruma dolls lack pupils. new owners fill in one pupil (usually the left) to mark the start of their journey toward achieving a goal. the second pupil is filled in upon attaining that goal.
to say this struck a chord within my own soul would be a serious understatement. not only is the zen bungalow a relatively new venture itself (less than 4 months old as i write this), but the environment we are establishing is intentionally focused upon nurturing businesses and individuals embarking on new paths. this makes the tradition behind daruma dolls particularly relevant to our purpose. so relevant that i have decided to make them an integral part of our own culture.
starting this month, new members of the zen bungalow will receive a daruma doll to mark the start of their journeys. though we may start with many winking (one-eyed) darumas, it is my hope and desire to house a host of wide-eyed darumas in the months and years to come.