Z is for Zen

Textures by Kim Klassen: Reveire and Little Things

Man is the product of his thoughts.
What he thinks, he becomes.
~Mahatma Gandhi

Well, we started ABC Wednesday, Round 10 with Attitude, so maybe it’s fitting we end it with a Zen moment. After all, Zen is the art of concentrating on the true self, and visualizing that true self in daily life. In Zen, no words or necessary. It’s harmonizing the body and mind and mentally letting go of the things that disturb our inner peace.

Of course official Zen Buddhism is way more complicated than this explanation, but it sounds an awfully lot like deciding to have an attitude adjustment.

Change the attitude, change the outcome. Or at least, change the perception. Self-examination and self-reflection is necessary in helping us figure out why we do what we do…even when we don’t want to do what we end up doing! Clear as mud and definitely not very Zen-like, right?

 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. (Romans 7:15-19)

It’s only when we can admit responsibility for what we’ve previously thought, felt and done that we can we begin to make ourselves better people. When we humble ourselves and be open about our thoughts, we really discover who we really are. And, if we don’t like that person…well, an attitude adjustment is necessary.

So, here’s a recipe for self examination and discovery:

Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.

How very Zen.

Linking up with ABC Wednesday

PS: Some­thing is amiss with my com­ment box. If you are having prob­lems posting, please refresh the page and your com­ments may mag­i­cally appear. I’m working on it, but a little bit of knowl­edge is dan­gerous and I’m not a techie. I do so look for­ward to your com­ments and hope you’ll be patient while I cuss rant scream bitch figure out the problem. Please let me know if you had issues posting a comment.


12 thoughts on “Z is for Zen

  1. Interesting. One of our ABCers was wondering if there was some contradiction between being Christian and Zen. Altho Zen Buddhism is a religion, I always took zen as attitude, as you’ve shown.

    ROG, ABC Wednesday


    • There’s a lot more to the actual practice of Zen Buddhism as a religion. Some of the tenants can complement Christianity, some cannot.


    • Just off the top of my head: the golden rule, divesting yourself of worldly possessions, and judging not, lest thee be judged strike me as rather Zen. If only institutionalized Christianian sects adhered to them. 😉 My entry for ABC Wednesday this week is Ziplocked


  2. So if I think hard enough that I really do like to cook and clean, will I become a happy cook and cleaner? A bit of sarcasm there, but I do think the zen attitude is a good one and I liked your post.


  3. The concept of Zen does indeed complement Christianity, but I would not embrace Zen Buddhism as my personal belief system. Great series, Lisa! Look forward to seeing you in Round 11.

    abcw team


  4. My dear Lisa,
    My 3rd try in leaving a comment for you. I knew I spoke about the quote. Very powerful and TRUE indeed!! Thank you also for the information on Zen. Take care my friend.


  5. Sometimes I feel just like Paul did. I work on my attitude and thoughts daily as a christian. I like the unknown quote, never saw this one before. Look forward to your next round of posts.


  6. Thank you for the great quotes, especially the one by Mahatma Gandhi.The quotation from Romans 7:15- 19 is too cryptic for me. The last one is very good.
    Thanks for your comment! I too read the horoscope with a giggle.


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