Dogen and Gudo Wafu both advise one to hold their teeth together while sitting zazen (while the tongue is placed gently on the roof of the mouth, slightly behind the teeth). I have no problem with tongue placement, as I am *slightly* familiar in some Daoist practices, but the teeth placement causes me strain. I don't know if this is normal, or if it is because of some extensive orthodontic work I had when I was young, changing the interior alignment of my teeth, and also the size of my mouth! (It had to be expanded because my mouth was too small to house all of my teeth as they grew in. :lol
So, anyway, it feels awkward for me to place my teeth even slightly together while sitting. It causes a lot of tension in my jaw. It also gives me the sensation of grinding my teeth together, along with not knowing whether these teachers meant that all the teeth come together, or just the front or back teeth...
What does everyone do with their mouth?
I know that it is not the most important aspect of zazen, but I am curious, and it is starting to distract me from actual practice!
Edit: The most natural position my mouth falls into is having my entire tongue up against the roof of my mouth, causing a kind of vacuum seal once all the air is out of my mouth. My teeth are very close together, but they are not touching.
I'm sure this will be regarded as a very nit-picky topic. :roll: