International Students Sit Online Zazen

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Date & Time: Saturday, August 1, 8:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Spot: Online zazen via Zoom (The zazen session was mentored by a priest at Dokuonji Temple.)
Zazen instructor: Chief Priest Fujio
Participants: 6 international students, one student from each country of China, the Philippines, Russia, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, and Brazil and 19 KSGG members
Languages: English and JapaneseOnlineZazen2020Aug

Zazen Relieves Stress!

by Zili, Chinese student studying at Yokohama National University

I learned some basic zazen (sitting meditation) contents from Chief Priest Fujio on Zoom. In zazen, you can be comfortable by inhaling, exhaling, and doing simple hand movements. During the zazen session, I was relaxed and calmed down. I liked the way of zazen breathing most: inhale deeply and exhale slowly. By exhaling slowly, the rhythm of breathing was stable. Zazen gradually relieved my stress. What was uncomfortable was that my feet got numb. It might be because I had an incorrect zazen posture. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to participate in this online zazen session. I was very happy to experience traditional Japanese culture.

Zazen Has Healing Effects

by Emiko, KSGG member

I had wanted to take part in a zazen session. But I couldn’t do it due to my schedule conflict. Every time I read a report of a KSGG’s zazen session, I felt as if I had participated in and soothed myself for the experience of zazen. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the online zazen session started at Dokuonji Temple. So I got a chance to try out the session. When I joined the session for the first time, I didn’t know how to do it very well. But this was the second time, so I thought I was able to calm down and concentrate on my breathing. Chief Priest Fujio taught us, “When you fail to practice zazen breathing properly, you can resume it anytime.” I thought his gentle personality appeared in those words. I was healed by doing zazen for an hour and a half. During the second session, he prayed, “May people all over the world be happy.” I was also impressed by his prayer. I think experiencing zazen physically at a temple is better. However now, even people who are not interested in zazen can try it out online like this because they don’t have to visit a temple. I have a chance to increase Japanophiles through an online zazen and I would like to invite overseas friends as well.