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Renunciation of thinking is a declaration of spiritual bankruptcy.
People meditating on the fundamental carry out their ordinary tasks and activities in the midst of meditation and carry out meditation in the midst of ordinary tasks and activities. There is no disparity between meditation and activity.
The practice of meditating four times a day in Zen communities began in this manner during the 12th century.
God answered my prayer, for one night I had a dream, and in that dream a big black man appeared to me and told me what to mix up for my hair. Some of the remedy was grown in Africa, but I sent for it, mixed it, put it on my scalp, and in a few weeks my hair was coming in faster than it had ever fallen out. I tried it on my friends; it helped them. I made up my mind I would begin to sell it.
Madam C. J. Walker
Awareness of the ways of desire is self-knowledge. Self-knowledge is the beginning of meditation.
Zen is not effort. Effort is tension, effort is work, effort is to achieve something. Zen is not something to achieve. You are already that. Just relax, relax so deeply that you become a revelation to yourself.
Our concern in meditation is to know oneself, not only superficially, but the whole content of the inner, hidden consciousness. Without knowing all that and being free of its conditioning, you cannot possibly go beyond the mind's limits. That is why the thought process must cease, and for this cessation there must be knowledge of oneself. Therefore meditation is the beginning of wisdom, which is the understanding of one's own mind and heart.
Give up all desire for enjoyment in earth or heaven. Control the organs of the senses and control the mind. Bear every misery without even knowing that you are miserable. Think of nothing but spiritual freedom.
To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.
I pray on the principle that wine knocks the cork out of a bottle. There is an inward fermentation, and there must be a vent.
Henry Ward Beecher
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