Haiku Essay by Robert Epstein (USA)

Each day, I realize more and more how much I don’t know or understand about haiku. This essay by Robert Epstein will deserve many rereads.

Charlotte Digregorio's Writer's Blog

Presence, Not Practice, in Haiku

by Robert Epstein

When I meet with a person in psychotherapy who is seeking support for some personal challenge or interpersonal conflict, I am as fully present as I can be during our time together. This being present––which is not based on any theory or approach––includes mindful awareness, compassionate non-attachment, openness, genuineness, humor (where appropriate) and intuition.

I used the term “mindful awareness” above because I do not have “a meditation practice,” as some students of meditation like to say. This is because I personally regard “practice” in the realm of meditating to be stultifying and confining. For me, meditative awareness can happen anywhere rather than in a meditation hall or in front of an altar. Because meditation and haiku parallel each other in some ways, I likewise view the notion of practice as it relates to haiku writing as both unnecessary and a…

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2 thoughts on “Haiku Essay by Robert Epstein (USA)

  1. I used to teach a teaching course for post grad students, and I always included a panel session with undergrads as part of the course. One year one of the undergrads, when asked if there was anything else she wanted to say, said to the class “we know you’re busy, we know you want to be back in the lab. But when you’re in class, we’re there with you. Be there with us.”
    That article reminded me of that. I think it was the best thing any of my students ever heard in that course.
    Thanks for sharing it.

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