Skip to main content

try not...

After a fun week in England with my sister and niece, I am back home. Only a week till my first sesshin(zen retreat) in Brugge. I must say I am excited and a little nervous-which is stupid. I should just relax and let things fall in place by themselves. However that part in me that constantly tries to control everything cannot relax and is afraid of making mistakes. While browsing the internet for "first sesshin experiences", I came across this article that answered several questions in my head.
Here is an excerpt:
"This public correction can be very uncomfortable as we usually rush to cover up our imperfections, but in Zen you eventually learn to accept yourself as you are by accepting that your failings are obvious, ordinary, and not special to you. At first I tended to only notice my own mistakes, but as this has become less painful I am seeing my mistakes blend in with everyone else's. Chanting is a good place to notice this as it is difficult for westerners to chant in Japanese, and even the English chants are long and hard to follow correctly. I don't think I'll live long enough to experience it - but they say a Zen master is one big mistake! In dharma talks sometimes Eshin says “we are all one big mistake”. This is a powerful antidote to getting stuck in the "I want to be special, So fuckin' special . . . But I'm a creep" song."
You can  read the whole article here:

I get a lot of questions as to why I do zazen. Am I a Buddhist? No. I am an atheist. I do not follow any religion/teaching whatsoever. Honestly I also do not know why I do zazen. I cannot give you concrete answers. Moreover I know I should not have any concrete goals for doing zazen either. After all, it is just sitting in silence isn't it? Not trying to achieve anything, a state of mind that is so different than what has always been taught to me. However I can say this: I like it. I love my dojo. I like going there and meeting the people there. I like sitting in stillness and I like "not trying" for a change. In my life I am always so busy with "improving" myself, "changing" and "trying hard". "working for a goal". In zazen I let go of all these, or maybe, I don't. I just sit there aware of all my inner struggles and my environment. That's all. I just like doing zazen. Simple as that.


Popular posts from this blog

Landelijk Atelierweekend

Since last year November, I have not been very active. Couple my grief with the corona quarantine, I stayed mostly indoors as many others and did a lot of self reflection. I cannot say that I did not enjoy it. I guess I needed all that me-time. However I knew I have to snap out of it somehow and therefore I decided to participate in this year's "Landelijk Atelierweekend".  "Landelijk atelierweekend" is a fun initiative where hundreds of artists open the doors of their studios to the public. The doors to my studio will be open for both the summer (this year postponed to 5-6 September) and the winter edition (14-15 November) to visitors.  My new work will be on display in my studio; namely my new paintings and digital illustrations. Through the atelierweekends I will be looking forward to showing my work and talking about them but also to visiting other artist dtudios in my area and talking to them about their works. My studio is tiny and therefore I will not be a

More over Alia Rachmanova

It has been a long time since I wrote my last blog. What made me want to write again are the reactions i still have been getting for my two blog entries about Alia Rachmanova ( Alja Rachmanowa and It arrived! ). Apparently there are several people on the internet desperately searching for more information about her. Here is the little information I have in my hands about this interesting woman. I hope it will be helpful to someone :) Meantime, you can find her books (mostly in dutch and german though) in second hand bookshops. Unfortunately it is almost impossible to find them anywhere else :( The following text is a compilation from the article "Alja Rachmanowa" published in the Flow magazine in Dutch. Thank you Flow, if you did not publish that article I could never learn about this extraordinary woman! Hope you do not mind my translation :P The Russian writer Alia (Alexandra) Rachmanowa (1898-1991) became world-famous with the wonderful trilogy “Love in the Red

in search of Komitas -2 Bibliography

Reading about the Armenian genocide is not at all an easy task. I keep reading about places I know, places I have been to, places I walked on without knowing that thousands had been murdered there. I have to stop every now and then to go out for a walk or open the window the let in some cool air to calm myself down. I also feel more irritable and have less tolerance for silly jokes that target groups of people or cash on stereotypes. It feels like there is so much hatred in this world. I think the more I read topics on sociology and history, the more I understand people and their motives. They are selfish and predictable. Animals driven with simple instincts. That gives one a strange sense of calmness, it is like coming to terms with human stupidity. You would then expect that it should not be news that there is so much hatred around-since that too is to be expected from our species. Nonetheless there is also so much good and greatness; like in music, harmony, in arts, in literature,