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Posted on 11-30-2016

Ready to Wake Up? 

By Sam Nguyen

Are you ready to Wake Up? Zen meditation is about Waking Up from False mind so that you can return to your Awake mind and live truly happy and free in everyday life no matter where you are or what you are doing.

Have you ever felt stressed out by the chatter in the head that seems to always be judging, complaining, worrying, irritated, and commenting back and forth all the time? That is our False mind, full of perceptions and conflicts from the past that we still carry inside us, preventing us from being fully in the present moment and seeing things in a fresh way, without all the filters. Have you ever had moments where you felt really clear, open, and light, as if nothing could disturb you? That is your Awake mind, which has a capacity to be fresh, clear, stable and happy in every moment.  It is the original nature within ourselves, before all the habits, beliefs, and clutter of False mind covered it over. Through Zen meditation at Universal Door Meditation Center, you can Wake Up to the difference between these two minds, return to your Awake mind, and live with unconditional happiness and freedom all the time. Sound interesting?

Life can be very busy and unpredictable. Sometimes it may seem like you are on a roller-coaster that never ends and it can be difficult to know how to navigate the stormy weather we all inevitably face. What can give you the stability that is so important through life's ups and downs? What can guide you through any storm? Only Awake mind and the practice of Zen meditation will help you to recognize it and connect with the Awake that is already within. Truly, you are Awake, you are not your False mind.

“You are not the voice in your head;

you are what can recognize the voice in your head.”

-- Zen Master Thich Dieu Thien

  

Through Zen meditation, anyone can begin to build and strengthen their capacity to connect with Awake mind. This enables you to get to know who you really are and gives you a chance to choose a new path, one that brings us back to our true home to live happy and free in any situation, not relying on any external causes or conditions.

So often we live life controlled by our False mind, often looking to the future in search of our happiness, dwelling in the past and wishing it were different, creating unrealistic fantasies, or re-playing experiences long gone. When we do this, we are wasting this precious, present moment which is where we can access our Awake mind. It is so common for us to live outside of the present moment that many people just accept it and continue on and on, hoping and lamenting, not realizing this is actually a conflict-filled cycle that we are stuck in. This is where Awake comes in. You don't have to be swept away by all of that anymore. 

Awake mind is limitless in comparison. Since Awake is only in the present moment, it is unbound. It is like an “Ah-ha” moment that is always waiting for you; every moment can be an Ah-ha moment. Awake is always available and can be connected to in any situation. Meditation practice is not something that is only done while sitting still on a cushion or chair, although that is an important foundation level to help us get started. Zen meditation has a wide spectrum of application, from walking meditation, to eating meditation, to working meditation, to living with Awake in everyday life.

This practice has no prerequisites. It is available to people of all ages, cultures, religions, and backgrounds. Often people hesitate to try meditation because they mistakenly assume that they cannot do it. Sometimes they carry a picture in their mind that meditation is like this or that, or a meditating person has to be a certain way. You may be surprised to find out that with a little guidance and support you can bring your mind and body together, and experience the many life-changing benefits that meditation offers.

Another common misconception people have is that knowledge is enough to guide them through life. Although knowledge is important to help us understand things, understanding is different than realization. Only through application of practice can we actually Wake Up, and truly realize about our true self. Like someone who really wants to swim, they can watch others, study about the ocean, and understand the strokes, but then in order to really swim they need to jump in the water and apply for themselves!

The False mind is very cunning and sneaky, and we often don't even notice it is there. It is at these times that we are caught up in all of False mind’s stories and illusion, unknowingly blind to the fact that we are lost in the system of False mind. So someone may ask, “If this voice is your own voice, shouldn't you trust it?” Well, if we begin to look into it, we start to see that this voice is very fickle. It is always changing and going back and forth based on conditions, and often has very short-sighted logic and reasoning. It is easily distracted and drawn into situations. In short, the False mind can get us into a lot of trouble and in most of our cases, already has. It builds things as well; it builds fortresses of thought and reason around our beliefs, thinking that doing so will make us happy. And it will defend those fortresses fiercely, even when those are the very things making us suffer. It only knows a world of duality; good/bad, right/wrong, winning/losing, etc.  It is not flexible enough to see things or situations as they truly are. The False mind can only see things based on our stored perceptions, judgments, beliefs, etc.

The False mind also includes habit and addiction. Even though we may know something is not good for us to do, we continue on and on doing it, sometimes even unconsciously. Why do we do this when we clearly know better? This is an example of the power of the False mind and also shows how important it is to practice in order to break out of that cycle. The knowledge that we should not continue a habit is not usually enough to actually break that habit. Only Awake is stable enough to break long held habits and addictions, seeing clearly their root causes and knowing exactly what to do in the present moment.

But in order to do this, we need to return to our Awake, and that means practice and application. This False mind system is something that has been running for a very long time and often habits can be hard to release. But because Awake mind is already waiting within us, it is very possible! Awake mind can transform stress, struggles, health and conflicts that you thought were unchangeable facts of life. We can realize who we are and who we are not. We can Wake Up to live truly happy, fresh, open, and alive, with clarity and purpose.

So now, are you ready to discover the difference between these two minds for yourself?  And which is your real, original one and which is not? Isn’t it time to break free from the nonstop stressful cycle of False mind and find out how life-changing Awake can be? If so, try exploring Zen Meditation and discover for yourself the power of Awake.

Universal Door Meditation Center, 2619 Charles Lane, Sugar Land, TX 77498. 281-565-9718. 

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