Shodo Harada

‘Of course, just sitting is not as easy as it sounds. All kinds of thoughts come up, all kinds of sayings, all kinds of delusions and ideas. All kinds of problems as always coming to interrupt zazen, one after another the thoughts come out: we question whether what we are doing is doing any good, or how long we have to do it, or if we are doing it right, or whether it is really going to work or not. Or we think about all the other things we still have to do, about whether it is really necessary for our legs to hurt this much, about how nothing will come of tomorrow if we only do this. All these things and more. Then, if our mind becomes quiet, we start enjoying the fact that we are feeling good. Our body may feel like it is floating in air or being pulled into the ground; all kinds of strange sensations may intrude. As they come up, one after another, we have to just cut and throw away, cut and throw away, on and on and on and on… and doing this we go deeper and deeper.’ (The Path to Bodhidharma)

This is in the section of the book about sesshin,  and what it describes will be familiar to anyone who has sat a long retreat. It happens during any period of meditation really, but it is much more pronounced and obvious over a longer sitting

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