Zen Meditation

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s mind there are few.” – Shunryu Suzuki Roshi
The Zen Meditation consists of zazen (sitting meditation), kinhin (walking meditation) and sutra chanting. It is conducted in silence. We sit 30 – 40 minutes, followed by a short period of walking meditation, chanting and zazen again. During the morning meditation (last Saturday of the month 9:00 – 12:00) there is also a reading of a spiritual text and a discussion about it.

As Enkyo o’ Hara says: „Zen practice is not about getting away from our life as it is; it is about getting into our life as it is, with all of its vividness, beauty, hardship, joy and sorrow. Zen is a path of awakening: awakening to who we really are, and awakening the aspiration to serve others and take responsibility for all of life“. We honour the present and are aware of the „miracles of each moment“.

Zen meditation developed in India and China, Japan and Korea as part of the 2,500 year old tradition established by Siddhartha Gothama. He came to be known as the “Buddha”, which simply means “awakened”. He lived and died as a human, not as god to be worshipped. The Japanese monk Dogen brought the teaching of the Buddha about 1230 from China to Japan and is known as the founder of Soto-Zen.

Meditation can bring both physical and mental benefits to those who practise it regularly. These benefits, according to medical studies, range from improvements in concentration to improved immune system activity, stress relief and can help with conditions such as insomnia and high blood pressure.

During meditation it is not necessary sitting in the lotus position – for most people quite impossible. Just find a way to sit with a straight back in a posture that you can hold comfortably for about 30-40 minutes. This can be on a chair, on a bench, kneeling or in a simple crossed leg position.

The participation of the zen meditation is free of costs. Anyhow we appreciate a donation to cover costs.

Please contact us if you want to try it.

 

MEDITATION on Sunday mornings:

Inspired by the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh,the Almond Blossom Sangha comes together for a Sunday morning of Mindfulness and picnic lunch once a month. During these mornings we practice full awareness in all that we do: with each step, with each breath.

Activities may include: guided and silent sitting meditation, listening to a Dharma teaching, mindful movements, Qi Gong stick exercises, guided Deep Relaxation, Touching the Earth practice, walking meditation and mindful sharing, followed by a mindful picnic lunch.

If you are interested in joining, please let us know in advance by email, hulshoffpol@sapo.pt, or telephone, 919 784 792.