Is a Japanese Zen Garden Right for You?

creating zen gardens Our lives are go, go, go. We’re always plugged in, and, very often, our backyard gardens do not provide the kind of relaxing, sacred space one needs to unwind after a busy day at work. Our Western gardens stand in stark contrast to the serene, contemplative spaces known as Japanese Zen gardens. Westerners tend to design gardens with a wide variety of color, a broad palette of plants and materials, and for the purpose of doing things like barbecuing and entertaining.

In contrast, Japanese Zen gardens, sometimes referred to as Japanese rock gardens, are designed with the purpose of Zen meditation in mind. They are meant to cultivate a sacred atmosphere and create a space in which to sit and meditate for hours. In other words, Japanese Zen gardens are designed as places in which to do nothing, to empty the mind of one’s thoughts, and just sit.

Some of the best Japanese Zen gardens are located in Kyoto, Japan, but the closest thing most of us ever get to a Japanese Zen garden is the miniature, sand-filled, desktop version – with the tiny Japanese rock garden rake for pushing the sand into various patterns. While these desktop versions probably hold some meditative value, it seems safe to say that the depth of one’s Zen meditation is probably directly proportional to the size of one’s Zen garden.

So, is a Japanese Zen Garden right for you? Even if you’re not a person who has a regular meditation, yoga, or tai chi practice, we all need a place where we can go unwind, relieve the stresses of the day, and just sit.

Tips for Creating Zen Gardens

Where Zen gardens go wrong in Western gardens is when people try to create literal copies of Japanese Zen gardens. When you see an old, two-story craftsman home, with a Tuscan pergola, and yes, over in the corner, a Japanese Zen garden, it creates chaos to the senses and ends up looking like a theme park. The best way for your landscape or garden to add value to your property is for everything to work together to create a cohesive design. This is a basic design tenant of Japanese Zen garden design: How the garden looks from the inside is just as important as how the garden looks when outside. The windows and doors of the house create frames from which to view the garden. That’s one of the many reasons pictures of Japanese gardens are so beautiful. They’ve been planned that way.


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Again, not enough infornation

What do you consider "moderately priced"--10K, 20K, 500K? How big is the lot: length, width? Are there any trees on the site. Where is the house on the site? What activities does the yard support? Are there kids at home? Do you want a bocci ball court? Volleyball? Do you have pets? What kind and how many? Are there privacy concerns? What style are you looking for--English Garden, Japanese Zen Garden, Veggies...?
Are you looking for a plan, and then you will do the actual construction--or are you looking for someone who will implement the design, or some hybrid of the two? There isn't much in the way of info in your post

Zen Beliefs

Zen is the Japanese form of the Sanskrit word dhyana, "meditation," and is a school of Buddhism which has had significant impact in Japan and Europe and America. Founded in China in the 6th century CE as the Ch'an school of Mahayana Buddhism, it was exported to Japan in the 12th century CE and gradually developed its own unique, indigenous character.
The Indian scholar/monk Bodhidharma is traditionally attributed with transferring the tradition from India to China. The essence of Bodhidharma's teachings is that one does not need to study sacred texts, worship deities, or do elaborate religious rituals to achieve enlightenment

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Creating a Japanese Zen Garden
Creating a Japanese Zen Garden

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  • Avatar Tim B How do I build a Japanese rock garden?
    Jun 11, 2010 by Tim B | Posted in Garden & Landscape

    I am referring to the ones where people use the rakes to create ripple designs that encircle larger rocks, and create ripple designs at the edges of the garden.

    I need to know the following things:

    What materials are needed to build such a garden?

    If it takes up an entire backyard, how much would the cost be estimated at?

    • There is not much done about building a Japanese Garden. You an easily do that by yourself or even can hire the professionals to make a beautiful garden. An expert of furniture can easily do that. you can find them online without any hassles. No permit from government is required .. You just need few rocks and garden furniture to build such garden for your home. You can take help from the website link given below..