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Zazen - Zen meditation

We’ll try Zen meditation ‘Zazen’ at Iyama Hofukuji temple today

It takes place in the special room for it, ‘Zendo’.
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We visited a building called ‘Hojo’ first. A priest welcomed us with a warm smile.

We followed him, he led us to Zendo.
It’s located behind Hojo.
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禅堂内部_補正 
The aim of Zazen is to attain enlightenment and be free of desire and attachment.

Originally, it used to be taken as a spiritual exercise to be relaxed and keep calm in India.
However, after Buddha attained enlightenment, it spread as a training for Buddhists from India to China, Japan, to other parts of Asia.

These days, Zazen is getting popular among people who want to maintain their health, and people who want to be released from the stress.

Actually, Zazen has no religious meaning for some people, since they enjoy Zazen as an exercise for their mind and bodies.



When you enter Zendo, you have to act in the appropriate manner

First you are supposed to bow, putting your hands together
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Next, step forward with your left foot, then the right foot
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And bow again after entering the room.
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We are beginners, so we chose a trial course.
It takes about 1hour20min sitting, a short break, another 20min sitting and a explanation for Zazen at last.

Before we started, the priest explained us how to do Zazen.


You need to sit on the ‘Zai’ first
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Don’t forget to arrange your shoes beautifully after you take off them

There are two ways to cross your legs.

‘Hanka fuza’ could be easier, lift up your one ankle with your hands and put it on the thigh of the opposite leg.
It doesn’t matter which ankle comes the top.

‘Kekka fuza’ is more difficult, you need to put your right ankle on your left thigh, and put the left ankle on the right thigh. 

Yan tried Kekka fuza, but unfortunately it was unsuccessful
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Finally he gave up, and crossed his legs in Hanka fuza way
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Then, put your right palm near your berry button, and turn the palm up.
Next, place your left palm on it, and make a circle with your both thumbs.
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Look ahead, with your eyes half closed
After that, shift your eyes to the floor 1m ahead.
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Please try not to close your eyes completely since you wouldn’t concentrate on Zazen or you might feel sleepy if you closed your eyes


After that, straighten your back, and start doing meditation.
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When it started, the priest rang a bell and lighted incense.
I felt it helped me to switch to the world of Zazen.


You are not supposed to talk or make noise during Zazen
Clear your mind, and relax...
Take breaths and count it…1,2,3…it makes you feel calm.

After that, you’ll feel you are in the perfect silence out of this world.



Can you see the stick the priest has
It’s called ‘Kyosaku-bo’ to hit our shoulders.
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It’s not for the punishment, it helps us to be successful in Zazen
For instance, when your shoulders get stiff, it could be good to be hit by Kyosaku-bo
Or, when you feel sleepy, it will help you.


The priest will hit your shoulders when you asked him to do that.
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Of course, we tried it
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It didn’t hurt as I expected It even relaxed my tense muscles
I’ve heard there’s a misunderstanding for Kyosaku-bo, some people believe it’s a sort of violence. But it’s not true


The first part of the meditation finished How time flies

During the break time, we massaged our legs and shoulders.
Actually, my legs were numb… It seems difficult to keep sitting for a long time...

According to the priest, monks on the training have to keep sitting for a week
They don’t move at all except the case they eat or go to the toilet.
What a surprise

The bell rang to tell us the end of Zazen

I really enjoyed it After Zazen, I felt refreshed
The only problem was it was a bit cold in Zendo

You might think Zazen seems complicated, but it’s simple in fact.
The most important thing is not to think anything.

Zazen is usually practiced in a seated position on the floor, however, it’s also possible to practice seated in a chair, a bed, wherever you like.
Because the purpose of Zazen is not to be able to sit with your legs crossed.

It’s said Zazen helps you to control your emotions.
I’m fairly sure it would be useful for our daily life and our work

How about trying Zazen I bet you’ll enjoy it



Iyama Hofukuji temple
Address: 1968 Ijirino, Soja City
Tel: 0866-92-0024
iyama-hofukuji.jp/zazen

A regular Zazen practice
Place: ‘Zendo’ in Iyama Hofukuji temple
Date: the second Sunday (every month)
Time: 7:15-9:30
Price:500yen

A trial Zazen practice
Place: ‘Zendo’ in Iyama Hofukuji temple
Date: according to the booking
Time: according to the booking
Price:1000yen



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上記広告は1ヶ月以上更新のないブログに表示されています。新しい記事を書くことで広告を消せます。