The Zen Garden Zen gardens definitely hold the place of the world's most beautiful gardens, with the layout of the average Zen garden being both purposeful and exotic. Also known as Karesansui, these Zen gardens were originally conceived in ancient China, though they were adopted by and are most commonly associated with the Japanese. The purpose of the Zen garden is very simple, but it is very spiritual as well. The purpose of the Zen garden is to represent different aspects of a person's life and mind through plants, trees, ponds, animals, rocks, sand, and soil. The Zen garden is created according to the desire of each person, and each Zen garden is unique. Many Zen gardens contain no life at all, while others simply contain one type of animal or plant life. Some Zen gardens are exclusively designed as habitations for birds, while others are designed to attract animals. Every Zen garden has a couple of things in common: Garden Buddha statues are featured in the place of honor in the middle of a pool of lotus flowers The paths of the garden are designed as a representation of the paths to enlightenment There are seats and a number of places to sit and be still in quiet meditation Many Zen gardens are filled with sand, and that sand is moved with a rake into a number of patterns and designs. The rocks strewn purposefully among the sand is designed to be seen as mountains or islands, and the sand is moved in such a way as to appear to be water moving through the landscape of the sand. Many Zen gardens are filled with green plant life that is abundant and verdant, with the garden Buddha statues in the center of the garden. The plant life that grows in the garden is used as a representation of the teachings and instructions of Buddha growing in the minds of the owners of the Zen gardens. The larger the variety of plant life that grows in the garden, the wider the range of understanding the person is trying to comprehend. The paths of the garden, as mentioned above, meander throughout the entire garden, and these paths are designed for two purposes: 1. They are representative of the path that the Buddhist must walk to achieve true enlightenment, which is represented by garden Buddha statues in the center of the garden 2. They are also used as a path for those who are practicing meditation while walking can take advantage of to stroll through beauty and focus their mind on contemplation The best thing about creating your own Zen garden is the fact that you need very little to create it. The only requirements for Zen gardens are garden Buddha statues, which are easily acquired. The rest of the garden is to be designed exactly how you want it, and each aspect of the garden will reflect the state of your karma. Read More About Buddha Statues.