We tell you what Zen Buddhism is and 20 phrases to understand its philosophical dimension and its practical method. Because unlike other doctrinal traditions of Buddhism, Zen Buddhism is a method of reaching truth and awakening.
Zen Buddhism consists of a series of meditation practices to connect with our mind and our consciousness, and thus reach the truth.
- You can also read: Taoism: the doctrine of the path of perfection.
Zen Buddhism: what it is
Like all the traditions of Buddhism, Zen Buddhism starts from the teachings of Master Buddha, in this case oriented towards “awakening”, in the sense of guiding others towards a direct and personal understanding of the truth. The key to Zen is in the predominance of experience over abstraction through the mind.
Thus, Zen Buddhism is concretized in a practical method of spirituality , experience, meditation and connection with the internal actions of our being.
Buddhism is an Eastern philosophy that preaches the path to liberation and the transcendental overcoming of the self through the renunciation of the material, the practice of meditation, and the cultivation of wisdom., kindness and compassion.
Two traditions emerged from this non-theistic religion between the 6th and 4th centuries BC, one of which is Mahayana (Great Way ). This was more a method than a doctrine , since it was intended to be a method to discover the truth, and from there came Zen Buddhism.
According to Zen Buddhism, the mind or consciousness is identical to what it perceives. To achieve the full experience of awakening one must directly contact the nature of mind and consciousness in its deepest sense, and this is achieved through meditation.
All Buddhist philosophy includes meditation, but only Zen Buddhism uses it as a direct tool to awaken. The word Zen, of Japanese origin, refers to the meditative absorption that arises from the exercise of concentration. Therefore, Zen consists of concentrating and meditating to open what we have inside . How Zen Buddhism is practiced The key to the practice of Zen Buddhism is zazen . This methodology is the most common and effective for meditation, and it needs some time to consolidate its exercise and its effectiveness. Although it is not as easy as it seems, there are some interesting keys that can help you practice it: 1. Preparation of the space
All the practices of Zen Buddhism require a favorable environment that helps us connect with the deepest part of our being. For zazen we need a space free of bad energies , relaxing and that makes us feel comfortable.
For Buddhism, also in its Zen version, the connection of the individual with nature is essential. You can do Zen Buddhism in your home without any problem, but it is recommended that you decorate the meditation space with herbs, flowers, incense, sea shells or stones . Candles and low lighting can help you. 2. The position
The most important thing to do well in zazen is the body posture. To do this, sit on a round cushion and cross your legs in a lotus position.. The most important thing is that your body is relaxed and you get a comfortable position.
Therefore, the position of the neck and head is very relevant. Keep your spine upright and in line with your neck . The neck should be stretched and the chin tucked in. It is very important to relax the jaw and the muscles of the face, while we relax the arms by placing the hands with the palms facing up. 3.
Breathing Zen breathing is one of the oldest techniques and has a very refined technique. Always breathe through the nose, starting with a slow, strong and natural breath. The key is to breathe in long and deep, with a force that goes down to the belly , and expel the air slowly and silently.
The technique requires an apprenticeship with Zen masters , who compare this type of breathing to the mooing of a cow. 4. Meditation
By relaxing the body and deepening our breath, our subconscious awakens, generating images, thoughts and memories spontaneously and naturally. We have to let these images cross our mind without causing or stopping them, until little by little and by themselves they disappear.
Then the mind goes blank, thoughts disappear. The conscious part of the brain rests, and thanks to the body position and breathing, the blood irrigates the deepest parts of the brain, generating a state of well-being, relaxation and harmony.at the same time that we are waking up from the state of drowsiness.
Thus, we find peace and well-being in a fully conscious way through the subconscious. Zen masters say that zazen is difficult to understand and much more difficult to achieve: it requires a lot of practice and patience. 20 phrases of Zen Buddhism Zen
philosophy and its masters have written phrases that help meditation, in addition to being a path of knowledge that makes us better understand what it consists of. These are some of the most inspiring. 1. The more you know, the less you need.
It was pronounced by the master Yvon Chouinard and it perfectly sums up the message of Buddhism of the search for the immaterial to achieve spiritual fulfillment.2. You have to learn to let go.
Inaction is one of the essential principles of Buddhist philosophy: man has to find his harmony with nature and the natural flow of things. 3. Zen is liberation from time.
The key to Zen is to reduce the temporal space to the now. That is why all efforts have to be aimed at freeing oneself from the past and the future, and focus on the momentary. 4. True love is born of understanding.
According to Buddhist philosophy and Zen, love is a concept closely linked to the ability to understand, understood as discovery, awakening. 5. Three things cannot be hidden: the Sun, the moon and the truth.
It was a phrase originally expressed by Master Buddha, which summarizes the message of Buddhism: reach the truth by connecting with the cosmos. 6. Better than a thousand empty words, a single word that can bring peace.
One of the main messages that Master Buddha conveyed was the importance of silence as a means of expression. 7. It is better to travel well than to arrive.
The importance for the zen methodology is to enjoy and make the most of the process of an action, without worrying about the final result. 8. The meaning of spiritual life is to realize the truth.
It expresses the sense of truth as the discovery of what we carry within, which can only be realized through spiritual activity.9. If you want to learn, teach; If you need inspiration, inspire others. If you’re sad, cheer someone up.
Zen is based on discovering the truth within us so that it can be revealed to others. We can all be teachers when we reach Enlightenment. 10. Feelings come and go like clouds in windy weather. Breathing is my anchor.
It’s a great metaphor expressed by a Zen master: we have to get rid of the swing of emotions through meditation.
Phrases of Zen Buddhism to understand this philosophy. | Image by: Honey Kochphon Onshawee/Pixabay. 11. Walk like you’re kissing the ground with your feet.
Pronounced by one of the greatest teachers of Buddhism, it is a claim to reinforce the here and now, to focus on the present moment and the place where we are. 12. The maximum victory is the one that is won over oneself.
The ultimate goal of Zen Buddhism is to reach the truth through self-exploration and meditation, and for this reason the victory is to reach ourselves. 13. Do not be afraid to delay, be afraid to stop.
One of the keys to meditation is to be patient and act without stress. Being relaxed and finding time to do it helps us reach our goal. 14. Your home is where your thoughts are.
For Zen Buddhism the spirit is in the mind, because this is the center of everything. Through thoughts (and meditation) we reach our being. 15. Just as parents take care of their children, you should take care of the universe.
It reminds us that we and the cosmos are connected, we just have to find a way to connect with it and become universal. 16. A good teacher opens the door for you, but you must go through it.
This phrase highlights the importance of mastery, but even more so how relevant personal action and willpower are. 17. Open your eyes to change, but don’t let your values escape.
Observance and analysis are essential to start the process of spiritual mutation, but without losing what we carry inside. Dalai Lama quote. 18. When you reach the top of the mountain, keep going up.
This is a phrase that highlights the overcoming character of Buddhism, its understanding of life as a cycle of perfection that never ends and always regenerates. 19. Life consists of dying young, but as late as possible.
This phrase reflects the importance of having a long life in which we can also maintain a young spirit through its constant renewal. 20. Every morning we are born again, what we do today is what matters.
Master Buddha’s phrase about the importance of focusing on today, on what we can do in the present, and taking life as a gift.
- It may interest you: 75 Buddha phrases about peace and love.