Meditation Instruction

Zazen Instruction is the first Tuesday of every month at 6:30 p.m.

Please wear comfortable clothing.

You may sit on a chair, a meditation cushion or a bench.

Our style of meditation is called shikantanza, which means ‘to just sit’.

Dogen Zenji (the 13th century Japanese Zen Master, who transmitted Soto Zen to Japan from China) wrote about zazen in his text called Fukanzazengi.

In part he wrote…

Put aside the intellectual practice of investigating words and chasing phrases, and learn to take the backward step that turns the light and shines it inward. Body and mind of themselves will drop away, and your original face will manifest.

For practicing Zen, a quiet room is suitable. Eat and drink moderately. Put aside all involvements and suspend all affairs. Do not think “good” or “bad.” Do not judge true or false. Give up the operations of mind, intellect, and consciousness; stop meansuring with thoughts, ideas and views. Have no designs on becoming a Buddha. How could that be limited to sitting or lying down?

At your sitting place, place your right hand on your left leg and your left hand on your right palm, thumb-tips touching lightly. Straighten your body and sit upright, leaning neither left nor right, neither forward nor backward. Align your ears with you shoulders and your nose with your navel. Always keep your eyes open and breath softly through you nose.

Once you have adjust your posture, take breath and exhale fully, rock your body right and left, and settle into steady, immovable sitting. Think of not thinking. Not thinking – what kind of thinking is that? Non-thinking. This is the essential art of zazen.

For an online zazen demonstration:

global.sotozen-net.or.jp/eng/practice/zazen/howto/index.html

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