Five exercises Zen meditation

Inspired by the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh

Walter Lucchesi (2/1/2018)

Find a comfortable posture, either seating or laying on a mat…
Slowly come in touch with our body and its present state…
Gently move the shoulders to release tension…
Relax the neck, and gently move the head side to side
Bring relaxation in the throat… and feel the rhythmic movement of your ribcage…

The first exercise is conscious breathing:
I breathe in: I am aware I am breathing in…
I breathe out: I am aware I am breathing out…
In… out…

The second exercise is becoming a flower:
Bring your attention to the eyes and the eye sockets…
Let them soften…
Feel the increasing heaviness as they relax…
The corners of your eyes gently push down, towards the corners of your mouth with further relaxation…
Now let a smile form on your mouth… and feel the corners of your mouth moving up, almost trying to reach the corners of the eyes
As you smile, you offer 3 flowers: your eyes… and your mouth
See your 3 flowers as you offer them to the Sangha and to the people you wish to…
I breathe in: I see myself as a flower
I breathe out: I am fresh as a flower
In…. out…
The Lotus of the Buddha is always available to us

The 3rd exercise, is becoming a tree:
Emotions, suffering, anxiety, worry, craving, anger…
All can make us feel unstable, fragile and vulnerable.
Like a big tree in the wind, the leaves are shaking, and so the small branches….
But the trunk and the roots hold solidly…
Our root is the lower abdomen and the sacral region…
Lets tune in with this area of our body… our root…
Breath with your lower abdomen and gently feel the strength of this root…
I breathe in: I am a strong tree
I breathe out: I feel solid
In… out…

The 4th exercise is becoming a lake:
As we created compassion with a smile, and we feel our root being strong, we allow clam in our mind, to bring a sense of security…
As a mountain lake… still.. flat.. clam..
Reflecting the sky and everything around…
Imagine your mind reflecting all thoughts like in a mirror…
They are there, but just reflected by your clam mind…
I breathe in: I become a clam mountain lake..
I breathe out: my mind is still…
In… out…

The 5th exercise is allowing space to obtain freedom:
As you breathe, feel the smile on your face.. the solidity of your root and the calm of your mind…
We will now create space…
Like the fleeting clouds on top of a mountain top… your thoughts come and go… inconsistent and volatile..
Like the fleeting clouds leave behind a blue sky… your fleeting thoughts leave space in your mind…
This is practicing letting go…
without engaging with them.. see how the thoughts leave and create space….
Let them go…
I breathe in: I create space…
I breathe out: I let go…
In… out…

Stay with this image of increasing space and letting go of all that no longer serves you…
Until you hear the sound of the bell

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