zen garden with pebble detail on raked sand canvas print
closeup of zen garden pebble detail on raked sand. Copyright: Asia Images
The Japanese rock garden (枯山水 , karesansui ? ) or "dry landscape" garden, often called a zen garden , features carefully-composed arrangements of rocks, moss, pruned trees and bushes, and uses raked gravel or sand to represent water. It is usually relatively small, surrounded by a wall, and is usually meant to be seen while seated from a single viewpoint outside the garden, such as the porch of the hojo , the residence of the chief monk of the temple or monastery. Classical zen gardens were created at temples of zen Buddhism in Kyoto , Japan during the Muromachi Period . They were intended to imitate the intimate essence of nature, not its actual appearance, and to serve an aid to meditation about the true meaning of life.
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