I've been reading this blog, as well as a few other Buddhist blogs, pretty regularly lately. I've been practicing zazen every morning. I read dharma books in my spare time. I think about Zen a lot. I'm not sure that this is so great.
I am a beginner. I started meditating about eight months ago (I had some basic instruction and used breath counting, then a mantra, then watching my breath to get started). I read Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind more recently and it made a big impression on me. Very recently, I changed my meditation practice to a Zen/just sitting approach. It has felt natural and I like it very much. Again, this may not be so great.
I find myself thinking about Zen a little bit obsessively. When sitting in the mornings, I get caught up in a thought from time to time; often these thoughts are about meditation itself. Ironic, I know. Sometimes I wonder what more I can do to deepen my practice, what more I can read, who else I can talk to, and so on.
Shunryu Suzuki warns against getting too excited about Zen. I agree and understand why this is important, but I am excited about it anyway. I know Zen is "nothing special." It is simply a part of my day, a normal thing. Still, I have to admit that it seems pretty special to me right now.
These are the classic signs of a phase. Is this just a passing interest for me? I don't think so, but who knows?
I suppose I am writing this to see what you will say, what advice you will have... though I suspect that I know the answer... keep it up, simply practice, sit with my excitement without adding too much more fuel to the fire. And that sounds like really good advice, but right now I find it easier said than done.
So I'm putting it out there. Zen is great. Zen is interesting. Zen is nothing special. Zen is ordinary. This is all true. Got any pointers for me?