Treading lightly the path to enlightenment.

Posts tagged ‘zen’

Immortality, however brief

Joy In Motion

 

By Land, Sea or Air,

I wish to live my life

To leave no trace 

But the tracks of 

Wonder and Adventure.

A vapor trail of laughter.

A wake of smiles.

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

Zen in our Techno-Monetary society

This journal entry was originally posted in 2012.

It seemed worth repeating.

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

Sunset Moon

It wasn’t easy choosing a name for the blog Armchair Zen, though that’s how I’ve referred to my personal philosophy for some time. Names like “Zen in the modern world” and “Everyday Zen” and the like seemed to be taken. I guess everyone has the same idea.

Mostly the idea of ACZ is to share thoughts and philosophy with those that want to seek enlightenment, peace in their daily lives, harmony with the world, nature, the cosmos and life itself. It’s not about achieving perfection or some higher plane or a place in the next life or eternity. It’s about understanding our capabilities and limitations in this life, it’s about acceptance, understanding, compassion, forgiving and letting go.

As it says in About, these things are nothing new. Applying them to today’s world is not always that easy. We live in a world I term a Techno-Monetary society. We’re surrounded by wonderful technologies from life-saving medicine, global communications, electronic entertainment, space exploration and productivity greater than mankind has ever known, bolstered by the machines and artificial intelligences of our modern world.

In ancient times and old days, individuals and whole communities were isolated, and did not have the benefit of the vast volumes of knowledge mankind has compiled since. Their lives were filled with strife, at the mercy of the elements, filled with superstitions, fears, and lack of understanding of things that seem simple to us today. The sun, the solar system, what makes rain, thunder, tornadoes. They had more time, and perhaps a greater need, to seek peace within their lives.

We are also slaves to the monetary system. In all the developed countries (probably 90% of the globe), we need to work at something to earn money for rent, taxes, clothing, food, transportation, and the list goes on. This is really not new, nor does it strictly apply to developed countries or societies. Go back a couple thousand years and we find people did not live the simple agrarian lives we might imagine. Subsistence farmers & ranchers, mountain-men and even minimalist communities of today need to barter goods or trade cash for the things they can’t make. Cooking kettles, sewing needles, broadcloth, tack supplies, sugar, salt, bacon.

Finding our personal zen and peace within our lives seems like a considerable challenge after negotiating traffic, signing in at work, talking to customers, clients or co-workers that are not seeking enlightened ways, and any number of non-zen, non-nature, non-peace-encouraging things we must do.

Still, I find my ACZ to be pervasive. It hasn’t always been that way. I was “Two Jakes” for many years, seeking solace in nature and creative expression during my precious evenings and weekends, and turning off the peace machine when going to battle with the world. After some years of concentration, practice and informal self-cognitive behavioral therapy, the zen has spread to all hours of the day.

Nowadays there are few interactions with others wherein the conscious-competence of ACZ does not rule. Filter-monitoring, managing emotions & reactions, thinking forgiveness & acceptance, seeking to navigate all situations for the best outcome of all under the guidance of enlightened thought & behavior. Spread loving compassion by being loving and compassionate. Spread forgiveness and acceptance by being forgiving and accepting. Appreciate the beauty of the world around us by opening our eyes and minds and truly seeing. It’s not always easy, but it’s always simple!

That’s really all for this post. Perhaps it’s not a lot of meat, but an encouragement to those that may be seeking the path to peace. Sure, it takes a little time and concentration, but it can be done without extensive training or effort or money or social status or massive brain power.

You don’t have to be rich, you don’t have to be beautiful, you don’t have to be perfect. Everyone is welcome.

The cosmos, and I, love each and every thing without judgement.

That includes you!

Be at peace,

Paz

Constant of Joy

Sunset Moonrise

Someone asked about happiness.

“Can you be truly happy if you are alone?”

I replied as follows:

For me, there is peace. It’s not so much about happy or sad, really. Life is a long, long road for most, and it is bound to be pock-marked with tragedy, sadness, loss and boredom as well as elation, excitement, gains and triumphs.

Having come to understand my place in the cosmos, my perspective has become one of simple reality. Like so many other beings on this planet, my existence is but a flash in the context of the universe. This existence, by its very nature, will be visited by laughter, joy, pain and sorrow in varying measures, until my light goes out. It is the knowing that all things here are transient that brings peace. Cherish the highs and endure the lows, and it’s gone before we know it.

I feel I am never alone. Wherever I go the Great Cosmos is all around me. I am a part of it as a grain of sand is a part of the beach. I feel comforted, secure. In constant company. And it is this that brings me joy (happiness) always.

Any place, any time, the Cosmos assures me, “I’m right here.”

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

Beholder

Gray and Blue

Gray and Blue

Is the songbird more beautiful perched among the cherry blossoms?

Is the songbird less beautiful perched upon a heap of trash?

Is the game bird less beautiful than the songbird?

And the mealworms on which it feeds?

In this Great Cosmos, their beauty is equal.

-Paz

Wonderlife

 

 

Unbridled

Unbridled

A life of

Wonderment

will not simply

Come to you and 

Adorn you like a ray of

Magic Sunshine.

It requires your 

Direct and Vigilant Participation.

You must believe it,

Believe it is and

You can make it so.

Herein lies the

Magic.

-Paz

Moments

September Sunrise

September Sunrise

It is a Sunday morning in July.

I look out the window through a gentle rain upon the green field.

A blackbird rummages about, bobbing its head.

 

This is what the bulk of our lives are made of.

Cherish every moment.

 

It is a Sunday morning in February.

I look out the window through snow falling silently upon fields of white.

A cardinal lights.

February Window

February Window

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

White Butterfly

Spirit

Spirit

Like the white butterfly

you came into my life

dancing about a wandering course gleefully,

occupying the senses totally.

Silently, the butterfly

flies on,

and I am left smiling.

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

Sandcastle

Cape 027

Little Bit on the Cape

We build these castles of sand

With those we love,

With our favorite companions,

Though we know our constructs are to be

Reclaimed by the eternal tides,

The joyful feet of passing children,

The loyal paws of joggers’ dogs.

 

The joy is in the building.

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

 

 

Chow Zen #2

Portrait

Portrait

One of the greatest joys and comforts of life

Is to have someone you trust implicitly.

Hang on tight to them as long as you can.

Make it mutual.

– Chuy The Wonderdog

Reach

Zen lesson while fishing with son Ryan.

Bass, Corporation Pond, and Ryan

Bass, Corporation Pond, Ryan on the Far Shore

My grandfather set a pretty high bar.

It’s been my driving force, my goal throughout my adult life, to reach that high.

Make no mistake, it’s not my grandfather’s bar for which I reach, and neither shall you.

That bar is a hard-earned badge of honor, a talisman that he will take with him into future lives.

Dominic Trimarco’s legacy was not to leave us an arbitrary list of criteria by which a man shall be judged.

His gift to us, across the generations, is much more enduring.

He taught us, by silent living example, that those altruists enlightened to these ideals will seize this opportunity.

That we have a right, a near-sacred duty, to determine,

each of us,

how high we shall set the bar for ourselves.

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

 

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