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Brian Enos's Forums... Maku mozo!

a small explaination of zen


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–noun 1. Chinese, Ch'an. Buddhism. a Mahayana movement, introduced into China in the 6th century a.d. and into Japan in the 12th century, that emphasizes enlightenment for the student by the most direct possible means, accepting formal studies and observances only when they form part of such means.

that is the literal translation of zen. but to explain it take a more practical explination. I have done martial arts all of my life. one of the more recent ventures was into the art of Kendo Kenjitsu ANd YIJITSU ... (various sport and combat forms of sword fighting) Now while doing these sword fighting ventures with kendo sticks we would get into groups of five or ten and start with all swords touching in the center and stating various rules such as every man for ones self.. NOw when you get in the middle of this live game of "whack a mole" you are striking and block and doing various things at once. After which we all talk about this.. and there are many times when playing people were like "how did you see that strike coming?" and i would have no idea what they were talking about. i had blocked a shot with out knowing it was there .. the movement of the sword was just so fluid and a part of me i blocked a shot .. this became KNown as a zen block because you were in the zone..

another example of zen is being "in the ZONE" so to speak. for those of you who have done this for a while have you ever been at the starting gate and right before you start everthing seems to slow down due to adrenalin? well when you go and your shooting and moving does it seem like your pistol ever just seems to go right to the target and you reload just soo smoothly? then it is all over you get a perfect score and you were like that was amazing.

well this is zen you reloaded with out thinking .. your mind and body just became one.. now there is no way to really set yourself into a zen manner it just happens.. the best thing to do is relax. a term we like to use in sword fighting is "BE" you are .. that is it there is nothing else you seem to "JUST BE" you are what you are...

and when you are getting ready to go out remember master yoda's qoute to which i hold dear..

"There is no try There is only DO or DO NOT"

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Closer to the point, you were experiencing moments of the conceptual mind taking a rest for once and realizing its truest state. It is not actually "Zen", just a quiet (mind) moment. Remember the Buddha never wanted folks making Zen into some kind of "moment". It is all moments and all things without our concerns confortably making another compartment for it, as if to control and analyze. Analyzing is error in and of itself. It is quite hard to be without judgement as we all know.

I am also a life long martial artist. The only reason I started into buddhist studies 14 years ago was to make myself a better fighter. I was in the military at the time and very aggressive and was looking for anything to give me an advantage as I was street fighting a great deal. Years later I realize how I was fooling myself. Same mistake some Samurai made trying to use zen like some magic potion. Now, I have not had a fight in over a year and I really get more out of my martial arts than at any point in my life. Zen is a tool to redirect the minds energies instead of being at the mercy of societies perpetual conditioning. Martial arts, same as gardening, or tea ceremony, building a computer, or motor is the same tool technically for this type of gradual realization. Essence through repetition as the saying goes, keeping the mind without contrivance.

I don't post much on these forums, but have been registered for a long time, so I would like to offer you a hearty welcome!


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Zen is a process, a way of life, a method to achieve awareness. It is no thing.

A special transmission outside the scriptures;

No dependence upon words and letters;

Direct pointing to the human mind;

Seeing into one's own nature and attaining Buddhahood.


Edited by AikiDale
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  • 10 years later...

backwards is nez


I have found meditating easy


feeling unbound is rare and possible.

the explanation of how is difficult and not possible.


Flatland Shooter,

If the above didn't help...

go with this:

I dunno what he said either.



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  • 4 weeks later...

I think the closest I come to it on a regular basis is meditation. I'm an amateur though.


Other than that, sometimes in court, when the adrenaline is flowing and you get the right argument out there, that might be close to zen. 

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  • 2 months later...
  • 3 months later...

When I was in college I became interested in the concept of Zen when I read the "Art of" books on Zen (motorcycle maintenance, flower arrangement, archery).  They are not scholarly works but they are thought provoking and I recommend them.  Essentially, my concept of Zen is that in every moment what we do becomes us and we are what we do.  Our doing is not just an action.  it is us.  We become what we do and it becomes us.  If we try to force, that force becomes its own identity.  By allowing our actions to flow without force we are.

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On ‎7‎/‎17‎/‎2018 at 5:59 PM, benos said:

If you are not confused, you will never be wrong.


Sorry, Brian, I love your Forum, but have to come down on the opposite side of the fence on this one.     ?


Most wars are fought over two sides, neither of which is in the least confused, and one or both 

of them are totally wrong.


On a smaller scale,  most arguments are between people who feel they are not confused, and entirely

in the right, and yet they KNOW the opposite.


I've changed my mind on MAJOR topics over the 73 years I've inhabited this planet - and each time

I KNEW that I was correct   ….    at least until I changed my mind and KNEW I was correct again.      :) 


When you get to be my age, you realize that there is NO "right and wrong", or if there is, which is

which is not easy to discern.     :eatdrink:

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50 minutes ago, Hi-Power Jack said:

When you get to be my age, you realize that there is NO "right and wrong", or if there is, which is

which is not easy to discern.     :eatdrink:

I think you are more in agreement with Him than you think. Once you realize what’s going on and just focus on the moment or task at hand, you just become that what you already know which is true. 

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Slight revision... On the psychological plane, confusion is attachment to your thoughts. Which is often called attachment thinking. If you are fully attentive, fully absorbed in what is happening, you cannot think. Attention and thinking cannot co-exist. So if you are not thinking, you cannot be confused, therefore you cannot be wrong.

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