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Harada Roshi

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What is the best way to quieten the mind during zazen? Thoughts just drive you crazy at times.Please advise.

In daily life we live a life based on thoughts. That is why we constantly think in the midst of our busy life. And then when we sit, it is as if we concentrate on creating even more thoughts. To cut those, isn´t that zazen ? If you pay attention to them, they are overwhelming and there is no end to them. Yet sitting and seeing how overwhelming they can be at times, if you decide it gets too much and give up, that is the end to this. So concentrate on your breathing, feel your actual breathing. To not pay attention to the thoughts is correct zazen. You cannot sit half thinking half breathing. You need to put your life on the line, or else you are wasting your time. From the top of your head to the ground under your feet, you need to throw all of it into your concentration. Like Shido Muman Zenji said: "While being alive to die and to die completely and then everything you do is good." Please keep repeating this to yourself and I pray for your continued efforts.

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