It's been 10 days since I started learning how to do zazen. I haven't done it every day, and not for very long each time, but I'm plodding along.
I am trying not to be bitterly disappointed about the local brick-and-mortar zendo closing, but I have to admit that sitting in a real-life zendo situation, with others around you, pushes me to do zazen longer than I would at home on my own, and with seemingly more ability to drop my thoughts. Plus the atmosphere in the zendo is peaceful and healing, with its beautiful altar and bells on their fine cushions. Home, in contrast, is distracting and un-serene to me in so many ways.
When I sit at home, I am especially bothered by one thing: I cannot resist the urge to look at the timer/clock and see how much time is left. I am not even sitting that long (10 - 20 minutes at a time), but I end up glancing at whatever time-keeping instrument I am using/is visible. I try to put it off, but I end up sneeking a peek once or twice (or more). ops:
I remember having my watch on during one of the real zendo sittings, and still, I didn't even think of looking.
I must be taking the wrong approach to zazen. I am so distractable and scattered. Trying to overcome a great deal of resentment and anxiety due to recent events in my life. Anyone have some thoughts on this?
Another thing, about my disappointment of the closed Soto Zendo: there are other temples in my area, representing other Buddhist schools (Jodo shinshu, Chinese pure land, non-Soto Zen, and a handful of Tibetan places). Some are less convenient than others in terms of schedule and location. Would it be beneficial for me to attend different ones, even if I don't feel a connection with/interest in/agreement with their teachings? But meditation in any real-life group might trump the disadvantages.
Ironically, it seems to me that the more interest I have in the teachings, the further away the temple is...or the less convenient their sitting times are :roll: