Many people think of zen as some weird mystic mumbo jumbo and don’t put much truck in it, which is fine.
For me, though, zen isn’t about meditation and ‘ohm-ing’, about converting to Buddhism and shaving your hair off, about throwing away all your possessions and living like a minimalist nomad.
Zen is about trying to achieve a more relaxed, mindful and happy life. It’s about recognising the ups and downs of life and rather than battling against them, trying to allow yourself to flow with them and see them for what they are: a part of life’s journey.
Nothing sums up my view of zen against other people’s frequently misconceived ideas like this quote from D. T. Suzuki, a father of modern zen teaching:
The truth of zen is the truth of life, and life is to live, to move, to act; not merely to reflect.
I don’t stop my life for zen. I don’t stop myself doing things because they are ‘un-zen’. I simply try to live my life with a mind geared towards seeing the best of all things and all people as much as I can.