Uncover a Deeper Connection to Ikigai

Due to the significant amount of time spent on work, some individuals are finding it challenging to discover additional sources of ikigai in their lives. Consequently, Kouji Miki’s Zen school aims to assist people in identifying more ikigai sources in their lives.

Pursuing a profound ikigai

Nick: This is interesting. So I've interviewed someone specifically about leisure time on my podcast several times. His name is Dr. Shintaro Kono, he's a leisure researcher. So I think leisure is a very strong source of ikigai.

And you believe that with AI, we will have this increase in leisure time, and that can improve well-being. But in a country like Japan, where many people work, and maybe their work is their ikigai, and they don't know what to do with their free time.

If there is an increase in free time, do you think they might struggle with this free time? If they don't have an ikigai outside of work?

Kouji: Definitely. I'm worrying about if free time goes up, not well-being because they don't know how to do their leisure time. That's the reason why we have to find our ikigai. So in our Zen school, we are helping how to find each person's ikigai.

Nick: I see. Do you think a person can have several ikigai sources or many. So I think Ken Mogi spoke at your event, and his book is about ikigai, The Little Book of Ikigai. And he describes ikigai as a spectrum—it can be many small things.

But I've also read other Japanese authors. There was an author called Tsukasa Kobayashi, and he said that ikigai is jiko-jitsugen, like ikigai is only self-actualization. So there are many different opinions even in Japan about ikigai. But I think if we have more sources of ikigai, that's probably more beneficial. Do you think?

Kouji: Yeah, I think my idea is across to Ken Mogi’s. I think kigai is many spectrums, many small things. I think one should have very big ikigai and other small ikigai, too.

Nick: I see.

Kouji: So I'm helping to make bigger ikigai for people.

Nick: I understand, I think that's important too. And maybe with the big ikigai we have that strong sense of purpose and creative expression as well. And that might also involve helping other people.