Get Zen

This morning I attended a zen meditation at Shunkoin Temple; pictured above.
I’d never done any kind of meditation before, so i wasnt really sure what i was in for. I just had the recommendation of my friend to go by.

The theme of the class was, learn how to live in the moment. 

The instructor talked about how each moment that passes presents us with the most opportunities we will have in our lives.
Each moment that passes immediately becomes our past, and something we cannot reclaim. Considering this, we should live for each moment and shouldn’t separate the big events in our lives from everyday things.
Every moment is full of possibility and is as important as the next.

During the class we did two fifteen minute sessions of meditation. Afterwards we had an interesting tour of the temple.

I especially enjoyed learning about the meaning behind zen gardens.
Zen gardens represent peaceful settings, with a focus on rocks and stones rather than plants and flowers.
Raking precise patterns takes significant focus,  a meditative state. It calls for tranquility and complete presence in the moment. Initially zen gardens were as much about meditative achievement as there were aesthetics.

Another thing that I find interesting is the many disillusions surrounding meditation.
So many people (including me before this morning!)  believe that to meditate you must fight your thoughts and empty your mind.
Today we discussed, that in order to clear your mind you must let your thoughts flow. Meditation isn’t about fighting againt yourself, but rather about discovering yourself. To do this you need to think, to find your peace.

I think today’s class was a fantastic introduction to Zen Meditation.
Let’s see where it takes me….


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