Zen is a life journey that is practiced through actions and words. It is a way to help clear your mind and forge the distance between your body and your mind. It is a sense of enlightenment in one’s own life and has been practiced for over 2500 years.
However, the meaning of Zen cannot be summed up as a mere definition.
Many people enjoy the theory of Zen, yet reading books on the subject or placing a bubbling fountain on your desk is different from practicing Zen. By practicing, people can come to realize that happiness is not always receiving everything you desire, but a sense of comfort and acceptance from any situation. You will be able to find peace and objectivity through the practice of Zen. One expression of Zen comes in the form of poetry.
Basho Matsuo is often regarded as the first great poet of the Japanese style of poetry, Haiku. During his life, he had over 2000 students and continued writing poetry up to the time of his death. He wrote his last haiku in Osaka, where he lay dying:
Fallen sick on a journey
In dreams I run wildly
Over a withered moor
Haiku, in its traditional form consists of seventeen syllables. It can be written in one, two or three lines. The most common form of haiku is three lines. A line of five syllables, a line of seven syllables and a line of five.
In those seventeen syllables a person can relax and help find quiet reflection. Haiku can be used to help find clarity and guidance at the beginning of a day and relaxation at its close. By reciting a haiku in the morning before getting out of bed you will be able to reflect on its meaning and relate its meaning to the way you face the challenges that may arise.
A great way to start practicing this simple yet effective method is to write your own haiku. Start your weekend by writing a haiku and then recite your haiku every morning throughout your business week. An example of your haiku might be:
Autumn leaves fall
The ground unaltered hard
Moonrise bright and clear
In this poem are you the leaves and are your ideas, hopes or help constantly outpouring? On the other hand, are you autumn, fearing the hard cold of the impending winter? Does the ground represent your job or your own belief in your single-mindedness? Are you worried about things which seem unmovable or impenetrable?
Perhaps from the poem you can focus on the moonrise. No matter how hard things are or get, in time everything will become bright and clear. After the leaves fall, it is that much easier to see the moon. From all challenges or hopes, come brightness and clarity. After the leaves fall it is that much easier to see the moon through the branches. No longer are the leaves obstructing your view. Have you found peace and acceptance?
If you are not the type of person who finds it easy to express yourself in your own words, then perhaps you should purchase a book of haiku. The book you purchase should have an ample amount of haikus, at the start of the week read one, and start reflecting on its meanings.
When you think or contemplate on a haiku you enable yourself to relax and think of the future. You allow yourself the opportunity to realize your mindset is interlinked with your body and woven into your life.