Otis Gordon ’20 studies the art of Japanese Bonsai

Mia Feizbakhsh

Otis Gordon ’20, a recipient of the Asia Initiative Fellowship, traveled to Japan for three weeks to study of the art and culture of Japanese Bonsai.

During his trip, Gordon visited Osaka, Takamatsu and Tokyo, where he visited a temple and meditated with a monk.

“He taught me this type of meditation called Zazen meditation, where you keep your eyes open the entire time and allow thoughts to wander your mind,” Gordon said. “He gave me insight into how Japanese people perceive nature and their surroundings.”

In Takamatsu, Gordon said he worked at a nursery, where he pruned a tree, a task that can take up to 15 hours to complete.

“When I was finally [finished], I was like ‘Thank God’, but also felt a huge sense of accomplishment,” Gordon said.