the next step

I finally went and sat with a local meditation group this week. It's a Korean zen lineage, and they were friendly and humble folks. Although the several other people there on that week night were all white Americans, we met in an actual Korean Buddhist temple. The temple was about the size of your average home, with a pretty blue ceramic tile roof. Inside there was just one large room, with a polished wood floor, and three large gold seated-Buddha statues in the front. On the wall behind the large Buddha statues were shelves from shoulder-height to the ceiling with hundreds of the same seated gold Buddha figure, each about ten inches tall.
It was a very visually impressive scene. However, I have to admit that as an American coming to Buddhism from a mostly psychological approach, all of this ornate design made me a little wary. It just seems much more... religious. But as I said, the people were friendly and humble, and I enjoyed it.

I had sat with a vipassana meditation group before, but this was my first sitting with a zen group.

We chanted, we sat for a half hour, we did walking meditation, then we sat again for another half hour. Afterwards there was a brief reading and discussion.

I really liked it, and plan to return. I've been working on a daily meditation practice on my own for almost two years now, and look forward to adding a weekly group sitting.

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