Be awakened

Don’t be lazy. We have been lazy and ignorant for millions of years, and we are now lucky to hear the bell of Buddha.

Meditate all day and night while lying, sitting, standing and walking. Always be awakened and mindful. That is the message from Zen Master Vien Hoc. But how can the lazy body be conquered? It is a hard work, and only you can do it to save yourself. You should observe your body carefully. Eat healthy, eat little. Work and exercise everyday.

Always remember that the law of impermanence is drifting us swiftly all day and night, and we have very little time in this life to practice Buddha Dharma to reach the shore. So don’t be lazy.

That doesn’t mean that you have to punish your body. The body is a raft, a vehicle; you have to take good care of it for a really hard trip.

Observe all your bodily movement; that’s a part of meditation. In a certain way, this kind of meditation might have originated some forms of martial arts. Also, you can have your own style Tai Chi Chuan for fun while meditating.

Try this: breath in and out gently, move your right hand very slowly in any way you want while you observe and feel all the bodily movements. Then, with both hands. Then, with eyes open, stand up and move gently while you observe and feel all the bodily movements. It is so much fun for the children to practice their own style Tai Chi Chuan while meditating.

Ask them to try it around five minutes a day. The practitioner would some time see that the mind and body become one.

Watchful

Watch yourself everyday, constantly. Watch yourself, be mindful, be alert. In this dream world, do not search for Dharma counselor; Watch yourself, and see the Buddha’s face on your face.

Watch yourself, and see you are impermanent, no-self. Watch yourself, and see whether you are living in a dream. You are changing swiftly, endlessly. Yesterday, you had millions of different bodies, millions of different feelings, millions of different thoughts – just like a stream flowing swiftly.

Look back and see all those bodies, feelings, and thoughts just like dreams, like echoes, like mirages. Then look at the day before yesterday. Do you feel just like millions of lives away? Are those dreams? Think nothing, just observe.

Just be alert, feel the breath, observe the body breathing. And feel the life and death flowing swiftly, endlessly in your whole body.

Taming the mind

Outwardly, stop all involvement; inwardly, stop all fabrication. Be alert – have a mind unmoved by the form you see, by the sound you hear, by the odor you smell, by the flavor you taste.

Constantly, watch the ox moving, listen to its hoofbeats.

Constantly, in any movement, never keep your eyes away from the ox. Constantly, keep your mind on the ox while lying, sitting, standing and walking.

Meditation is like taming an ox. How can you have a mind unmoved while living in this world? Just be like a water, not like waves or bubbles; the water is unmoved, uncreated, unconditioned while the waves rise and fall, the bubbles form and pop endlessly. Look at your mind – an endless stream of thoughts. Keep watching the mind, and be like water, which equally flows all things thrown into that stream

Sitting

There are three ways of sitting on meditation. First, sit and keep your mind on breathing; second, sit and chant the sutras;

And third, sit and happily listen to the chanting of sutras. Sitting has three levels. First, sit in union; second, sit in peacefulness; And third, sit without fetters. What does it mean to sit in union? That means your mind becomes one with your body. What does it mean to sit in peacefulness? That means your mind has no thought. What does it mean to sit without fetters? When all fetters are destroyed – that means to sit without fetters.

When mindful of your breathing, you are also mindful of your mind. Later, you will see your mind becoming one with your breath. When mindful of your bodily movement, you are also mindful of your mind. Later, you will see your mind becoming one with your body. Looking at your mind, you see thoughts coming and going, just like waves rising and falling. When you see no thoughts occurring, your mind is peaceful just like a still lake.