Zazen Meditation: Finding Silence, Peace, and Bliss

Zazen meditation is a practice that invites us to simply sit and do nothing. It may sound simple, but it is actually one of the most challenging things in the world. However, once you develop the knack for it and commit to sitting for a few hours every day, remarkable transformations can occur.

During your initial attempts at zazen meditation, you may encounter various distractions. Sleepiness, dreaming, and a flood of thoughts may try to pull you away from the practice. The mind might even present you with a thousand and one arguments, suggesting that you are wasting your time. It may tempt you with the idea of earning money, seeking entertainment, or indulging in gossip. It will use every trick in the book to drag you away from simply sitting.

But if you persist, if you continue to listen without being bothered by the mind’s tricks, a breakthrough will happen. One day, you will find that the mind has grown tired of you, and it will give up its attempts to distract you. In that moment, there will be no sleep, no hallucination, no dream, and no thought. All that remains is silence, peace, and bliss. You have entered a state of godliness, a state of truth.

Zazen meditation can be practiced anywhere, but it is best to choose a location that is not too exciting or distracting. For example, watching trees is acceptable because they remain still and the scene remains constant. You can also focus on the sky or simply sit in a corner and gaze at the wall.

During the practice, it is important not to fixate on anything in particular. Instead, allow your gaze to rest on emptiness. Although the eyes naturally seek something to look at, you are not directing your attention towards any specific object. Instead, maintain a diffuse image, which promotes deep relaxation.

Another crucial aspect of zazen meditation is to let your breathing happen naturally. Don’t try to control or manipulate it. Allow it to flow freely, and this will further enhance your relaxation.

Lastly, keep your body as still as possible. Find a comfortable posture, whether it’s sitting on a pillow or a mattress. Once you settle into your chosen position, try to remain immobile. When the body is still, the mind naturally falls silent. Remember, the body and mind are not separate entities; they are one energy. By keeping the body still, you create the conditions for the mind to quieten.

In the beginning, zazen meditation may seem challenging, but as you continue the practice, you will start to enjoy it immensely. Layer upon layer of the mind will begin to drop away, and you will experience moments of pure presence without the interference of thoughts.

To practice zazen meditation, find a plain wall approximately at arm’s length away. Sit facing the wall with your eyes half-open, allowing your gaze to rest softly on the wall. Keep your back straight and place one hand inside the other, with your thumbs touching to form an oval. Stay as still as possible for 30 minutes.

While sitting, allow yourself to be in a state of choiceless awareness. Do not direct your attention anywhere in particular. Instead, remain receptive and alert, fully present in each moment.

Zazen meditation is a transformative practice that can bring you closer to silence, peace, and bliss. Through consistent effort and perseverance, you can enter a state of godliness and truth. Embrace the simplicity of just sitting, and let the profound benefits unfold in your life.