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Zen Mountains, Zen Doorways

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article outlines two simple meditation techniques. ‘Zen mountain’ is a sitting form that I have been using in the recent Zen series as a basic practice.

In the spirit of  mountains and doorways,





Zen mountains, Zen doorways

This article outlines two simple meditation techniques. ‘Zen mountain’ is a sitting form that I have been using in the recent Zen series as a basic practice. ‘Zen doorways’ is a method to use in daily life to increase your sense of presence, and appreciation for what is available to you in each moment.

Sitting like a mountain
Sink your centre or gravity down into the belly & hips – Sitting comfortably with a straight back, as you breathe in, be aware of any tension in the upper body; head, face, neck, shoulders. As you breathe out, release the tension down into your belly and hips, so that you are lowering the centre of gravity in your torso down into your belly.

Breathe from the bottom of your lungs, focus on your belly – As you begin your inhalation, send the air down into the bottom of the lungs, so that you are filling them from the bottom up. If you do this you will notice the belly moving out a centimeter or two as you inhale, and moving back to resting position as you exhale.

Imagine your body like a mountain, broad at the hips and narrow at the top – Feel your torso to be tremendously stable and solid. If you like you can even imagine your body as a mountain that you know, so that you really get a feeling of it being like a mountain. If you want to take the image a stage further, imagine your belly as a cave in the heart of the mountain as you feel it moving.
Let your mind gradually settle as you focus your attention on your belly-breathing and mountain-like body.

Zen doorways
Each time you walk through a doorway, take breath, and breathe yourself into the present moment, with an appreciation of what the present moment is offering you at that particular time.
Another nice variation on this is, each time you pass through a doorway, imagine that you are in your Zen retreat, say, passing under the branch of a tree, stepping on pine needles, or through the temple doorway. This way every time you go thru a door, you take yourself back to the Spirit of Zen using your creative imagination.

Related articleBody-Mountain, Cloud-Thought, Sky-Mind

Article & content © Toby Ouvry 2021, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website   



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