Bonsai growing in Australia: Practicing Ikigai and Kodawari within a hobby

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Abstract

This paper presents early findings of an ongoing project about bonsai growing hobby in Australia. The project is a phenomenological study to explore the lived experiences of bonsai growers and aims to identify to what extent bonsai growing can contribute to the overall wellbeing of the participants. This study employs the Serious Leisure Perspective (SLP) as its theoretical framework to conceptualise and contextualise the collected data. The study also adopts phenomenology to inform the data collection and data analysis. The early results show bonsai growing is a rich source of wellbeing for the participants, and they find joy and pleasure in this hobby. Furthermore, bonsai provides a space for the participants to practice Ikigai, the notion of a life worth living, in their daily life. Ikigai is a Japanese concept which means finding purpose and meaning in life and what makes life worth living. The participants frequently refer to their bonsai hobby as one of the main reasons to wake up in the morning and engage in their everyday life activities. Besides, bonsai growing is an excellent example of Kodawari, which means the persistent pursuit of perfection through deep attention to details in a particular practice. Moreover, most participants showed interest in the richness of Japanese culture and philosophy. They believed bonsai growing is an open window for them towards the horizon of Japanese culture and traditions. Therefore, bonsai growing is a valuable opportunity to foster intercultural ties between Japan and Australia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages1-1
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 29 Mar 2022
EventAnnual Symposium of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Alumni Association in Australia (JSPSAAA) - Sydney, Australia
Duration: 29 Mar 202230 Mar 2022
Conference number: 4
https://aas.eventsair.com/catalysing-australia-japan/

Conference

ConferenceAnnual Symposium of the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Alumni Association in Australia (JSPSAAA)
Abbreviated titleCatalysing Australia–Japan Science and Innovation
Country/TerritoryAustralia
CitySydney
Period29/03/2230/03/22
Internet address

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