Zazen

Zazen: literally “seated meditation”

Zazen is at the heart of Zen Buddhist practice. The aim of zazen is just sitting in meditation and creating a state of mind where the mind is able to be unhindered by its many layers (our ego), one will then be able to realize one’s true ‘Buddha nature’ or ‘true self’.
In Zen Buddhism, zazen is a meditative discipline practitioners perform to calm the body and the mind and experience insight into the nature of existence and thereby gain enlightenment (satori).

The posture of zazen is seated, with folded legs and hands, and an erect but settled spine. The legs are folded in one of the standard sitting styles (see below).
The hands are folded together into a simple mudra over the belly. In many practices, one breathes from the hara (the center of gravity in the belly) and the eyelids are half-lowered, the eyes being neither fully open nor shut so that the practitioner is not distracted by outside objects but at the same time is kept awake.

The amount of time spent daily in zazen by practitioners varies.
Five minutes or more daily is beneficial for householders.
The key is daily regularity, as Zen teaches that the ego will naturally resist, and the discipline of regularity is essential.
Practicing Zen monks may perform four to six periods of zazen during a normal day, with each period lasting 30 to 40 minutes.

The amount of time spent daily in zazen by practitioners varies. Dōgen recommends that five minutes or more daily is beneficial for householders. The key is daily regularity, as Zen teaches that the ego will naturally resist, and the discipline of regularity is essential. Practicing Zen monks may perform four to six periods of zazen during a normal day, with each period lasting 30 to 40 minutes.

Successive periods of zazen are usually interwoven with brief periods of walking meditation (kinhin) to relieve the legs.

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