For those not familiar with Portland, Oregon, the city’s Japanese Garden is one of the finest and most beautiful in the world.
According to His Excellency Nobuo Matsunaga, Ambassador from Japan to the United States at the time when he visited Portland in 1988, he proclaimed the garden to be ‘the most beautiful and authentic Japanese garden in the world outside of Japan.’ Ten years later, His Excellency Ambassador Kunihiko Saito exclaimed over the beauty of the Garden and also agreed to its authenticity stating, ‘I believe this garden to be the most authentic Japanese garden, including those in Japan.’ "
The garden is comprised of 5 separate gardens. This shot was taken in the upper flat garden. It is a place of meditation and contemplation and is said to be a place of “pleasure—spiritual and temporal” as well as a site that denotes “happiness and hospitality” as well as “enlightenment”.
I love the balance of the upper and lower images connected by the adjacent lines. To me, the dark centers represent an idea or action. The ripple effect is that which occurs from those thoughts or actions and the lines are what connect all of those thoughts, actions and their subsequent after effects together. My understanding of Japanese rock / sand garden design, however, is that they are not meant to have or convery one particular meaning, and so it is left open to each person’s own interpretation. Each time one sees it, he or she may have an entirely different response.