Five Basic Forms Used at Ashland Zen Center


"Bow of Gratitude"

Palms together, finger tips even with nose; Used to enter/exit the zendo, bow to cushions, bow to each other.



Posture for Standing/Walking in the zendo

Called "holding onto the pillar of zen"; Left hand wrapped around thumb, right hand wrapped around left hand with right thumb on top of left thumb.



Sitting Meditation

Leg Positions: seiza, Burmese, lotus, bench, chair;
Tripod: knees supported, sit on edge of zafu;
Posture: straight back, chin pulled in, nose in line with navel, ears in line with shoulders; Eyes open and relaxed;
Cosmic Mudra: hands form oval with thumbs barely touching;
Breath: through nose, natural, count (1-10) on exhales.

Full description of the "Art of Zazen".



Walking Meditation

Shashu posture; Walk in rhythm of breath. Start with left foot, using half steps for balance; Take step with each inhalation.


Formal Bow

During Service... "Laying down the ego, raising Buddha Nature"

Start in gassho, kneel down touching forhead to floor; Open palms above ears; lower hands to floor; rise and stand