For those new to our meditation practice community, our practice is may seem very straightforward and to the basics.
There are no bells, whistles, chants,and the like. Just zazen. (Not that there aren't any bells, whistles, chants and the like in
Soto Zen) ;) ,
It's a practice rooted on the core of Zen Buddhist practice. But it's a practice that goes back all the way to the Buddha.
One of the great teachers of Soto Zen, Dogen, wrote the "Fukanzezengi" (http://wwzc.org/dharma-text/fukanzazengi-how-everyone-can-sit). It's a short work meant to describe how to practice zazen and what it is.
Dogen wrote: "A quiet room is good for zazen. Eat and drink moderately, don't entangle yourself in delusive relationships. Just leave such things to themselves. Don't think about good or bad, right or wrong. Don't give rise to the mind's common concepts, the judging of thoughts and observations. Don't sit to become an Awakened One because you can't fabricate a Buddha out of sitting or lying down.
In the place where you practice spread out some thick matting and place a round cushion on top of them. Sit on the cushion with your legs crossed in either the full lotus posture or the half-lotus. This means place your right foot on your left thigh and your left foot on your right thigh, loosen your clothes and belt keeping them neat. Then put your right hand palm up on your left foot and put your left hand in the palm of your right, the tips of the thumbs touching lightly. Find your posture, leaning neither to right nor left, forward or back. Your ears should be aligned with your shoulders, and from the front, your nose in a direct line with your navel. Place your tongue against the roof of your mouth keeping mouth and lips closed. Your eyes should be open and you should breathe gently through your nose.
Once you have found your posture, breathe in and out deeply, sway left and right and then settle firmly and steadily. Think of not-thinking. How do you think of not-thinking? Be Before Thinking. These are the basics of zazen."
That's zazen. That's our practice.
Hope you can join us in this practice.