How about a little good karma with that snack?

Artist Koshi Kawachi is offering just that. The artist carves images of Buddhas into these corn sticks, using what looks like a dental tool.

(SOUNDBITE) Artist Koshi Kawachi saying (Japanese):

"The Buddha simply exists inside it and what I am doing is just carving the shape out. My mind is empty when I look at the snack and carve."

Kawachi was inspired by a17th century Japanese Buddhist monk named Enku, who sculpted Buddha out of wooden sticks and then gave the statues to people who took care of him.

(SOUNDBITE) Artist Koshi Kawachi saying (Japanese):

"What's great about using snacks is that it is just a snack. If you use stone or metal, it becomes kind of preachy, a bit like a sermon you don't want to listen to. It starts to become authoritative and you go 'ehh'. But if it is a snack, people will just say it is a snack and it becomes casual."

But these divine delights come at a price. Kawachi is hoping to get 300 thousand yen - that's about 3000 U. S. dollars - for the lot. Luckily he says, there's enough oil and salt to keep these crunchy until an enlightened buyer comes along.

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