Finding Zen

Zen resides within

It’s a typical day in the world. It’s a lot like yesterday. Or tomorrow. It’s a lot like our life. There’s always something going on, but in the end we wind up pretty much where we started.

Then again, it’s not typical at all. It’s unique. A new day with people, places and experiences that’ll never be exactly the same again.  Even in our ordered and predictable routines, every experience is unique. Mundane or new and interesting; it’s all how you look at it.

Sometimes, for seemingly no reason, you see it. You see the moment for what it is. Perhaps you see something for the first time that you’ve been looking at for years. You stop and see the wonder. How could I have missed that?  Not yesterday, not tomorrow. Just now. That’s Zen. The moment you didn’t expect. The moment when you see that life isn’t ordinary at all.  

Many people think Zen is something mystical, the domain of monks living in mountains with vows of poverty and silent reflection. You can have a Ferrari, or anything else for that matter, and still experience Zen. The basic idea is very simple: we experience the world through a filter of expectations and preconceptions accumulated over the course of our lives – as a result we fail to see the world as it really is.

With practice and clarity, called mindfulness, we can overcome the veil of illusion and see through to our own true nature. We can learn to see the world as it is and understand our place in it. Our lives are not so different. We all have concerns, stress, good times and bad. We all get lost at times. And we can find ourselves when we try. Sometimes we just have to get out of our own way.

So to find Zen we simply head off on a journey of everyday discovery. Set your ego aside. Open your soul and see where it goes. Stop looking for Zen. No robes required. It’s been inside you all this time.


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