Preparing for Zen

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gavenv
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Preparing for Zen

Post by gavenv » Tue May 03, 2016 11:48 pm

What do you do to prepare for sitting Zen?

frank123
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Re: Preparing for Zen

Post by frank123 » Wed May 04, 2016 12:54 am

gavenv wrote:What do you do to prepare for sitting Zen?

You're cushion.

AlexMcLeod
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Re: Preparing for Zen

Post by AlexMcLeod » Wed May 04, 2016 1:20 am

I spent 9 years getting to perfect health and decent mental clarity before I seriously approached seated Zen.
Relax! Smile From The Heart!
There is a difference between the Mundane and the Transcendental. If you purposefully confuse them, I will ignore you, you nihilist.
There is no Emotion, there is Peace. There is no Ignorance, there is Knowledge. There is no Passion, there is Serenity. There is no Death, there is the Force.

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Dan74
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Re: Preparing for Zen

Post by Dan74 » Wed May 04, 2016 1:24 am

All sort of practices can be beneficial, and I hope a teacher or at least someone more experienced can help. Chanting the repentance chant, the Vows, Refuge, the Heart Sutra, dedication of merits, for example. Doing some yoga to stretch and bring the attention to the body. Prostrations - to the countless masters for passing on the teachings, to the Universe for supporting our practice, etc. Some people have an altar that they look after before sitting, light incense, etc. Basically whatever helps one focus and develop the right attitude.

_/|\_

AlexMcLeod
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Re: Preparing for Zen

Post by AlexMcLeod » Wed May 04, 2016 1:40 am

I think I may have read the question with the wrong emphasis. :jumping:

I have a meditation room, so I just go in there and sit down. Although, it is also for kung fu, so sometimes, I do that first, then sit down.
Relax! Smile From The Heart!
There is a difference between the Mundane and the Transcendental. If you purposefully confuse them, I will ignore you, you nihilist.
There is no Emotion, there is Peace. There is no Ignorance, there is Knowledge. There is no Passion, there is Serenity. There is no Death, there is the Force.

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kirtu
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Re: Preparing for Zen

Post by kirtu » Wed May 04, 2016 2:10 am

There is no real preparation for Zen. It's like asking how can I prepare to drink water?

You can, of course, prepare to sit zazen. I know of people who trained sitting in lotus posture for 30 minutes to an hour. However this kind of training (esp. nowadays) in not necessary and misses the point. One actually relevant point would be to do crunches as this does actually help with physically sitting.

The things that will actually help in Zen are raising the Bodhi Mind (the determination to become a Buddha and save all beings from their suffering) - this is the really essential point in fact. Then after that - cleaning your apartment and washing dishes, cooking mindfully. Training in kindness and compassion. Reading sutras esp. the Heart Sutra. However if you are going to do this things then you will begin to do them after you have begun Zen training (possibly except for the cleaning part at home and cooking mindfully).

IMO the preparation for Zen is receiving some minimal instructions, sit and come back. So the preparation for Zen is Zen.

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Even if you practice only for an hour a day with faith and inspiration, good qualities will steadily increase. Regular practice makes it easy to transform your mind. From seeing only relative truth, you will eventually reach a profound certainty in the meaning of absolute truth."
Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche

tingdzin
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Re: Preparing for Zen

Post by tingdzin » Sun May 15, 2016 2:53 pm

Dan74 wrote:Basically whatever helps one focus and develop the right attitude._/|\_
This is about it. Just pay attention to what you are doing when you begin to sit. If you chant, chant mindfully. Once settled, try not to move. If you have had no Zen instruction, you can pay attention to inhalation and exhalation to start with, and that will take you a long way if you do it carefully. Do a little every day -- 15 minutes per day is better than an hour once a week.

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