I want to feel ‘hope’… hopeful… that hopefully… one day…

I sit in front of my Gohonzan, candles lit, incense burning, legs folded, plant, water, beads. I stare at the mandala in its white wooden Butsudan (cabinet for mandala; Gohonzan) hoping for some strength to return to my being. Hopeful if I chant for long enough I will be able to manifest the universal energy, the mystic ‘myo’, into being, into my reality of existence. I begin this daily ritual (after six months of not practising) with silent prayers and then chant ‘Nam-Myo-Ho-Renge-Kyo’ for 20 minutes. It calms me and  I reflect on the smiles on my children’s faces in the picture I have of them on the shelf below, where the singing bell sits on its white satin cushion. I am filled with less hope than I need for the day and I reach for a quote in one of my many ‘quote of the day’ books. The first I reach for is about our relationship with death and how that shapes how we live. I imagine dying, ending it but the picture of my kids is a reminder that is not an option or a desire really but I do wonder about it sometimes, when the pain won’t let me shake it off. I sit in silence, close my eyes and remember my small purple knife and it’s sharp release as it smooths across my skin and I think of how many times this week I have resisted it’s allure. I cry. I cry. I cry for what seems an age. Not sure why I am crying but I cannot stop. It feels good. The tears, their warmth feels good against my skin. I sip water from a glass that had sat there from the night before, pour the rest onto the plant that sits by the red wooden table that holds the Butsudan. I watch the water sit on top of the soil and then seep in, like my tears which have now dried.

I need to feel hope… hopeful… hopefully… that one day… I will be fixed and not broken as I am or at least able to love the me I have become

Saatchi Art Artist Helena Wierzbicki; Painting, “Hope”


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