HASEGAWA | 長谷川
The name Hasegawa is Japanese for ‘long valley river’. It does not take a lot of imagination to see a flowing river in the Kanji symbol for gawa 川. From this letter my Japanese ancestors have derived the family crest which you find with me today.
In Japanese Buddhism Water represents the fluid, flowing, formless things in the world. Outside of the obvious example of rivers and lakes, plants are also categorised under Water, as they adapt to their environment, growing and changing according to the direction of the sun and the changing seasons. Water can be associated with mental and emotional tendencies towards adaptation and change; emotion, flexibility, suppleness, and resilience. In many ancient civilisations Water was equivalent to Life, as there is no life without water. The ancient Egyptians knew this better than any other, revering the Nile and building their cities along it and the fertile soil it provided. Water is sometimes also seen as a symbol for Destiny, as it has no control over the direction in which it flows, and even so, the largest rocks get eroded down in its path.