Daruma, TJ & me


Daruma Dolls: Symbols of Perseverance and Good Fortune in Japan

Daruma dolls, with their distinctive rounded shape and determined expression, hold a prominent place in Japanese culture. Modeled after Bodhidharma, the founder of Zen Buddhism, they have transcended their religious origins to become powerful symbols of perseverance, goal-setting, and good fortune.

Symbolism of the Daruma

  • Perseverance: Daruma dolls are designed to be bottom-heavy, always returning to an upright position when knocked over. This symbolizes resilience, an ability to overcome challenges, and the Japanese proverb “Nanakorobi Yaoki” (Fall down seven times, get up eight).
  • Goal-Setting: Daruma dolls are often purchased with blank eyes. The tradition involves making a wish or setting a goal, then painting in one eye. Upon achieving the goal, the other eye is painted, completing the Daruma and signifying success.
  • Good Luck Charm: Daruma dolls are seen as good luck charms across various aspects of Japanese life. They are given as gifts to encourage success in exams, business ventures, elections, and personal endeavors.

Daruma Dolls in Japanese Life

  • New Year’s Resolutions: Daruma dolls are a popular purchase around New Year’s, as people set goals for the year ahead.
  • Temples and Shrines: Large Daruma dolls are often displayed at temples and shrines. Visitors may purchase them, write their wishes, and leave them at the temple as an offering.
  • Daruma Festivals: Some areas in Japan hold “Daruma-Ichi” festivals where vendors sell thousands of Daruma dolls. There are also ceremonies where old Daruma dolls are returned to be ritually burned.

Beyond Religion

While the Daruma doll stems from Buddhist tradition, its significance has permeated mainstream Japanese culture. It represents the quintessential Japanese spirit of striving for goals with relentless determination.

Important Note: It’s crucial to recognize that while Daruma dolls are widespread in Japan, individuals will have varying degrees of attachment and belief in their symbolism.

Daruma, TJ & me

Here is my story with TJ and daruma.

In the heart of loss, where the silence of absence hangs heavy, the Daruma doll became more than just a decorative figure. It transformed into a symbol of resilience, strength, and the unwavering spirit to reunite with someone cherished. This is a narrative fueled by hope, echoing the philosophy etched within the Daruma’s round, blank eyes.

Embracing the Daruma Spirit

As I stand before the daunting task of reclaiming what was once held dear, I allow the Daruma to become my silent companion. Its unpainted eyes, reflecting unspoken desires and unwavering determination burning within my soul, urge me to set a clear objective – the joyous reunion with my loved one.

Setting the Goal: A Vision Bathed in Hope

I close my eyes and envision the day of reunion. Laughter echoing in the air, the warmth of an embrace, and the shared moments waiting to unfold. The Daruma becomes the embodiment of this vision, its presence serving as a constant reminder of the ultimate goal, no matter how distant it may seem.

Navigating the Landscape: Legal and Emotional Obstacles

The path ahead may be riddled with legal complexities and emotional hurdles. Yet, like the Daruma that remains steadfast in the face of adversity, I too must persevere. Each legal hurdle overcome, each emotional struggle conquered – these become the brushstrokes that paint the canvas of my unwavering pursuit.

Coloring the Eyes: Celebrating Progress

As I make progress towards my goal, I acknowledge and celebrate the victories along the way. Whether it’s a breakthrough in legal proceedings or a personal triumph over emotional challenges, every step forward stands as a testament to my unwavering resolve. I take a moment to color one eye of the Daruma, marking the milestones that pave the path towards reunion.

The Complete Daruma: A Symbolic Victory

The culmination of my journey will arrive, and on that day, the Daruma will serve as a witness to the realization of my dream. With both eyes filled with color, it stands as a symbolic testament to the power of hope, resilience, and the enduring strength of the human spirit.

Conclusion: The Unbroken Circle of Hope

In the spirit of the Daruma, may my journey be illuminated by the unwavering flame of hope. Through the trials and tribulations, the triumphs and setbacks, I remember that every challenge overcome is a step closer to completing this circle of resilience. May the Daruma guide me towards the day when my reunion becomes a reality, and the unbroken circle of hope is cemented forever.

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