How to Achieve Zen Enlightenment in Your Life
The term Zen "enlightenment" and "awakening" are used interchangeably. This awakening so to speak is a spiritual enlightenment and is a fundamental achievement among Zen practitioners. The basic premise behind Zen enlightenment is that whatever will be will be. It is said that the more we "embrace" the moment, the more enlightened we are. This is like saying that we can't control the circumstances of our lives, so instead of dwelling over them, we have to learn to become okay with them. This is a pretty big feat as some of the things that you should be okay with are pretty powerful. For example, imagine somebody asking you if you were okay with dying, or if losing a limb or an eye would bother you. Also imagine losing the love of your life and being able to say that you're okay with that. My answer to these questions would be a resounding no, but it is not until you can do this when you will be considered truly enlightened.
The real question that remains is how to achieve this fundamental aspect of Zen Buddhism. How is it possible to not be upset by some of these life changing questions, the most serious of all would be, are you okay with dying? The text book answer to this is to be able to stop running away from the moment at hand and instead, embrace it. This does not mean that it will be easy or even enjoyable but is a must if you intend to grow to your full spiritual ability. It is a state of mind where no matter what type of curveball life throws your way, your able to take it in stride and have enough inner harmony to just say okay, not a problem.
This brings us to a staple of Zen enlightenment, meditation. Meditation is when you sit for long periods of time, bringing along certain difficulties, which in turn you will enable you to handle any and all situations that come your way and get through even the worst type of difficulty that one can face.
Finding Zen enlightenment can be a challenge. For most people, it can be a great struggle to discipline their minds in order to achieve a state in which enlightenment can occur. With so many negative distraction in the world, how can a person successfully block all of the negative thoughts. This is why effective mediation is so important to the Zen lifestyle. And not just a once in a while kind of practice. Meditation should occur each day, just like eating, breathing, sleeping, etc. Daily meditation is an efficient way of "cleansing" the mind, making the possibility of Zen enlightenment more likely to happen.
Although extremely difficult the achievement of Zen enlightenment is the pinnacle of the Zen lifestyle. It is something that its teachings drive home from the very beginning and when finally achieved is the ultimate in freeing up your mind, which in turn allows deeper thoughts. The impact of this accomplishment far outweighs the sacrifice that one must make to become more patient, understanding and loving.