The Clear Water Zen Center hosts Beginning Meditation every Wednesday evening from 7:00-8:00. We do two rounds of seated meditation (about 15 minutes each), separated by a round of walking meditation. Basic meditation instruction is offered. While we are a Zen Buddhist group, we welcome individuals from all faiths (or no faith at all).
The Japanese word "Zen" derives from the Sanskrit term "dhyana", which refers to non-dualistic, meditative absorption. Zazen, or silent Zen sitting, is the essential practice of Zen. By helping to free the mind of all thoughts and images, this practice allows our innate wisdom and compassion --our own "buddha-nature"--to come up to consciousness, so that we can awaken to it and actually live the wholeness and perfection that is our birthright.
We practice a form of meditation known as counting the breath, where you breathe naturally and count each exhalation as it happens, focusing your mind exclusively upon your breath. When you reach the number ten, return to one. If you daydream and forget what number comes next, simply go back to one, without self judgement or self criticism. Visitors are encouraged to show up a bit early to get oriented to the Center and the practice, and to wear clothing which is comfortable, muted, and plain so as not to visually distract others.
The Clear Water Zen Center is located behind the Unitarian Church at 2476 Nursery Road in Clearwater, between Belcher Road and US 19, and follows the traditions and teachings of Roshi Philip Kapleau (1912-2004), founder of the Rochester Zen Center and whose book The Three Pillars of Zen was instrumental in introducing Zen Buddhism to the West.