My girlfriend and I did zazen laying down this afternoon. I almost fell asleep once or twice. Just breathing in and breathing out. Feeling the bed shake from the dog's panting breath and listening to all the sounds and staring at the air toward the ceiling (when I wasn't asleep). The sounds were fresh for me today.
Zazen is also listening, it's very deep listening along with concentration and focus. But when I do laying down zazen it's so hard to not fall asleep. Maybe this taught me that I should keep to the floor on a yoga mat or something when I'm doing laying down meditation.
Laying there, I longed to bow. I touched the striker to my forehead and rang the bell three times to begin zazen (the bell invites us to turn our concentration and focus on Awareness). I'm practicing shikantaza and one of my favorite teachings from Mujo, she says it's concentration without elimination (T.S. Elliot's?). So, I'm hearing all the sounds of the whole room and also outside in the yard and the street and everything that happens the whole time. It's effortless to hear it all. It makes me think, what is it? It's effortless.
Eventually all of it kind of mixes up, I mean my concentration gets all jumbled and mixes with Awareness itself along with the sounds, smells, feels and the inner world of thoughts, feelings and emotions. All that mixes together. So I listen and concentrate on all of the senses as well as the inner world and I am aware of it all. I focus and concentrate and I'm aware and I hear it all and I focus and concentrate and I'm aware, I'm aware of it all.... and keep going and going. Eventually it's one zazen and there is no more "I" in the sentence.
Vowing to come back to the moment, each moment, all moments is the practice. Even 24 hours a day. I try.
After about 15 minutes I grabbed the striker and touched it to my forehead and rang the bell twice. Slowly emerging from zazen, I longed to bow again but it was a little more okay this time. I put my palms together and felt a oneness with my girlfriend after all of a sudden seeing her hands together like mine. I guess my eyes were closed again.
Full bows to all you Buddhas sitting still and listening to the bright light of Awareness. Even for an instant recognized or an hour long zazen in full lotus it is all such amazing and important work. Just listening.