Just Sitting

“There is no expression with deeper meaning than that of the word “just” in “just sitting.” No matter what, throwing away the activity born of ignorant doings, you sit there, which means you are not being fooled. You stop delusion and sit.

“But most people can’t do that,” you say. That’s because they hold onto delusion. “Delusions rise again. There’s nothing I can do.” You shake your head and shake off deluded thought, thinking, “Now it’s fine.” Then, “They’ve risen again.” For an hour you keep shaking your head, but there’s nothing you can do. Grasping delusions and trying to push them away, you think they will disappear.   Just stop that, stop deluded thinking. Because you give these delusions your attention, they keep coming back.

Just cease deluded thinking and sit. The highest work a human being can do is to cease deluded thoughts. Zazen means just sitting. Don’t be deluded. Don’t think “good”, don’t think “bad.” It is said, “Clarify life, clarify death, that is the most important meaning of Buddhism.” Truly, just sit. That is all there is.”

— Motoko Ikebe


About Kokuu

Novice Zen priest and haiku poet. I am a tea drinking father to three teenagers living in Kent, UK. I have a chronic illness and far too many books. Sometimes I grow plants.
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