Newsletter 01/29/2015 ”Zazen”

Posted: 2015/01/29 in Uncategorized

Proverb of the week:

“Without consequences it is just training”

Sensei Sornstein

Contents this week

Story of the week:

“Zazen Practice” Written by Ronald L. Riedell

“Quote of the week

Story one

Zazen Practice

Sitting Practice

Zazen is meditation in a prescribed, cross-legged posture. In Zen Buddhism, zazen means, “Seated meditation, a meditative discipline that is typically the primary religious practice.”


Some people might translate the practice of the repeating Jesus Prayer (Lord Jesus Christ Have Mercy On Me A Sinner) by Orthodox monks on Mt. Athos as a “Zen-like” practice, as with the writings of the desert fathers in the Philokalia in contrast to the Buddhist writing of Siddhartha both are attempts of man to find the divine..

The desert fathers did not teach Zen and unlike Buddhism, the Philokalia has nothing to do with reincarnation or Buddhism unless you consider the resurrection of Christ a reincarnation.

However, prayer of the heart as the desert father taught does involve emptying one’s mind of worldly distraction and focusing on the Jesus Prayer.  Therefore, some people might use “Prayer of the heart” as a way of describing Zen meditation.


The practice itself of meditating on the Jesus prayer while holding a prayer rope is considered very devout by some Christians, just as sitting quiet in the practice of  Zazen, and repeating a mantra on a mala or prayer beads.

In my opinion, it is dangerous to introduce Catholic or Eastern Christian forms of mysticism using the word “Zen” to describe them because, the problem is with the terminology, not the practice, and it might be confusing to some mistaking one for the other.

As far as I know, meditation is prayer, sitting quiet and clearing the mind of thoughts relating to our busy society can only be useful for seeking G-d and finding the Divine Nature.

That is why I find a quiet place, and close the door.  My consequence of sitting quiet will be training for what truly matters to me, finding a connection to G-d or a union with the divine.

Below is a simple design and instructions for making your own cushion to sit on in your room I found on line. Have fun making a cushion for yourself and sit quietly you will be surprised in the results, no matter what you call it.

  1. Cushion (Safu) 7”x 14” about 7 pounds filled with Kapok fiber or buckwheat hulls 4.5 pounds, consider using recycled materials, such as old clothing, towels, or similar.  (Do I need one?  Nope.)th (5)


  • Length of cloth 59 inches long, 6 inches to 9 inches wide.
  • Two circles of cloth, each with a diameter of 11 inches to 13 inches.
  • Optional zipper
  1. Rosary (Mala) Prayer Beads (Do I need one? Nope.)
  2. Square Mat (Do I need one? Nope.)
  3. Quiet room with the door closed I just close my eyes. (Do I need one? Yep.)




Quote of the week:


We have practiced virtue and done what is right, turning our desire towards God and His will, and directing our

incensive power, or wrath, against the devil and sin.  What then do we still lack?  Inward meditation.

St Isaiah the Solitary

BR Voive of an Outsider Newslettr


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