The English vocabulary is famous for having so many descriptive terms, but every language has words that are hard to translate into English and yet would be an interesting addition.
The Japanese language reflects the way Japanese people have a great respect for nature and the changing seasons.
Komorebi means ‘the sunlight that filters through the leaves of the trees’ and shinrinyoku is ‘to go deep into the forest to experience the peace and beauty of nature’. It literally means ‘forest bathing’. Hanafubuki means ‘a blizzard of cherry blossom petals’, when the flowers come floating down en masse.
Yuugen is an awareness of the world around us that triggers deep emotional responses.
Then there are the terms reflecting the politeness and sensitivity of Japanese culture.
Ojama-shimasu is said whenever you enter someone’s house, acknowledging that you know you are going to be a bother and you apologise in advance. Itadakimasu is said before every meal in appreciation for all the work that went into making the meal. It means ‘I humbly receive’ and conveys a respect for all living things.
Ikigai means your motivation, or what makes you tick. It comes from iki ‘being alive’ and kai (which changes to gai) ‘worth or use’.
Ichi-go ichi-e is a Japanese proverb meaning ‘treasure every meeting with a loved one, for it will never happen again quite the same.’
Wabisabi is a way of looking at and appreciating the beauty of the world and accepting that’s it’s not perfect.
Kintsugi is the art of repairing cracks in pottery with gold or silver, ie taking something that is broken and making it more beautiful than before.
Japanese social values and culture are entangled within the language and translation of these terms into English is not easy.
I like the Japanese name for your own mother – haha. The mother of other people is okaasan.
The nearest I can get to saying ‘Happy Puzzling’ is
Watashi wa anata ga kurosuwādo o o tanoshimi kudasai! (At least I hope that’s what it says)