Zen is not something that can be taught. It is not something that can be "understood" because it lies outside the realm of subjective thoughts and notions, it lies outside the realm of the conscious. Zen is neither here nor there, like water which assumes any form that presents itself as an obstacle. While I know that zen is not something to be grasped at and made concrete with a designated formula, I often find myself wondering "what is zen?" After a long-short time of wondering, I found the answer.Zen is beautiful. Zen is, in its purest form raw inspiration.
Once upon a time, when talking about or describing zen (a futile effort that even masters have undertaken, knowing that words are temporary) I would try to sound wise by essentially reciting what Ive read about zen in my own words (which is basically what I've done in paragraph one, though any practitioner of zen would understand that dilemma, and there is no wrong in it.) This though, is not zen. Zen is to me two things. Firstly, it is that which happens throughout life, events, more or less, which are real, and honest feelings before any thoughts have come to describe it (i.e. the exhilaration of standing in a rainstorm) I can tell you about that rainstorm now, but the feelings connected with it just aren't the same, they aren't real. Secondly, Zen, to me, is anything I say or do or think or feel that came from my heart, not a second hand recital of someone elses thoughts. It is not being governed by what im told is the way, and making a decision for me, of me, about me.
Is that to say that zen is none of the things in paragraph one? Not at all, because zen is all of those things, but its more about questioning, is that what "I" believe, a real soul searching find that I readily accept for myself, or have I come to believe that because it was said that it is so.
In the case of the latter, I guess its no better than Christianity, but, really, what is?
I thought was a state of mind.... a peaceful feeling... a oneness inside with the oneness of external sources.... a connectedness with all that is...
Personally, I take all ideas about anything spiritual and try to find how the idea overlaps with other similar ideas.....
It is like the addage about the blind men and the elephant (they are all touching the elephant, but describing different parts... each thinking the other is talking about something completely different)
what you are referring to is "Satori" not Zen.
but without satori, there is no zen...therefore every contrivance, disciplinary and doctrinal, is directed towards satori --D T Suzuki
satori is considered a 'first step' to reaching nirvana
This view is typically held by Rinzai, which emphasizes satori
Thank you for the correction of terms Marie :)
Thank you for further 'enlightening' me ;)
I can admit when I do not fully understand. I had to look up satori to be honest :p I learned a small bit of Zen Buddhism in highschool, but that was over a decade ago now, so I forget a lot of it lol
how would you discribe it FM?
It is in doing, not in talking. Like any other spiritual practice that wants to be taken serious.
The first thing that jumps into my mind is the concept of Awen, or Om, or...aw crap I can't think of any other way to word it without writing three pages of crap that won't make much sense anyhow... All that is, no matter how we percieve it, everything and nothing at once... Uh...I can't think of any other ways to word it?...O.o
I both do and talk, snow. I dont believe I am enlightened, and maybe I dont understand it as some here claim, but zen is awakening, an awakening to reality and to self, what i said is "my" zen, a small step in my spiritual journey, a small step in me understanding myself, and that is why, to me, it is a beautiful thing, that zen
I wasn't offending you, it is just that I noticed myself that for instance the more I try to talk about Daoism, the more pointless all the babblery appears. I also do not claim you don't understand it or any other arrogant crap.
When I think of the word Zen I think of Bushido. I don't know why... I just do. I don't think I have ever experienced Zen on any level.
I also don't think I am a warrior by any standard but when I wake up every morning, I accept that I may die that day (literally or emotionally). In fact, I almost met my maker twice in the past week. Once via a Diamondback Rattlesnake and another via a spooked horse who went bananas during my ride. I look at Zen as maybe being like that place between life and death. A place of peace but not without first enduring suffering of some sort (imo). I'm no philosopher about Buddhism or Zen but I would like to think it exists to some level that is obtainable.