“one meeting, one life”
Each moment is unique. It will never happen again. I will never be exactly who I am in this moment. And I think this concept has made it a little harder to return to the keyboard. I get caught up in those moments that I didn’t capture, those perspectives that I had, but are now forgotten or changed by the perspective of who I am now.
And from who I was before, I jump ahead to the future and worry that I have nothing to say or that what I say won’t matter. So, I don’t write and this person who I am right now is then someone else who mourns the missed opportunities of the past and fears the opportunities of the future.
But, I’d like to flip that because it is making me unhappy. Ichigo ichie is the Japanese expression for “one meeting, one life.” It refers to the tea ceremony as a microcosm for life. Even if we gather in the same place and time with the same arrangement, something would be different. Current me would be sad that I couldn’t recapture the moment again and worried about the next one. I wouldn’t stop and enjoy the experiences I am having because I’m wrapped up in my imagination.
Ichigo ichie isn’t meant to be an admonition but simply a reminder of the truth: that when we look around us carefully, we observe that this is how things really are. I am who I am right now. You, dear reader, are who you are right now. Neither of us is the same as the first line and, if we each make it to the end of this essay, we will no longer be who we are right now, but someone new.
So, this essay for me, is a reminder to pause and be (in the immortal words of Fatboy Slim) right here, right now. Right here. Right now.
And just write, damn it!