A form of Zen meditation which involves sitting in an asana position (commonly the lotus position) and clearing the mind.

The word literally means "sitting meditation".

If you wish to be realized in Suchness, immediately practice Suchness.

A quiet room is good for zazen. Eat and drink moderately, don’t entangle yourself in delusive relationships. Just leave such things to themselves. Don’t think about good or bad, right or wrong. Don’t give rise to the mind’s common concepts, the judging of thoughts and observations. Don’t sit to become an Awakened One because you can’t fabricate a Buddha out of sitting or lying down.

In the place where you practice spread out some thick matting and place a round cushion on top of them. Sit on the cushion with your legs crossed in either the full lotus posture or the half-lotus. This means place your right foot on your left thigh and your left foot on your right thigh, loosen your clothes and belt keeping them neat. Then put your right hand palm up on your left foot and put your left hand in the palm of your right, the tips of the thumbs touching lightly. Find your posture, leaning neither to right nor left, forward or back. Your ears should be aligned with your shoulders, and from the front, your nose in a direct line with your navel. Place your tongue against the roof of your mouth keeping mouth and lips closed. Your eyes should be open and you should breathe gently through your nose.

Once you have found your posture, breathe in and out deeply, sway left and right and then settle firmly and steadily. Think of not-thinking. How do you think of not-thinking? Be Before Thinking. These are the basics of zazen.

What I call zazen is not developing concentration by stages and so on. It is simply the Awakened One’s own easy and joyful practice, it is realized-practice within already manifest enlightenment. It is the display of complete reality. Traps and cages spring open. Grasping the heart of this, you are the dragon who has reached his waters, the tiger resting in her mountains. Understand that right here is the display of Vast Reality and then dullness and mental wandering have no place to arise.

from "Fukanzazengi: How Everyone Can Sit"
by Dogen zenji

translated by Yasuda Joshu Dainen and Anzan Hoshin, "Progress Into The Ordinary", Great Matter Publications, 1996

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