What is the effort in meditation? To notice.
It takes a while though, to realize this practice of noticing. This is due to our habit of trying to understand life by way of objects—self-defined objects based entirely on thought. As soon as we notice a “thing” we can’t seem to let it alone. We name it, give it a value, accept or reject it. This is mental grasping. Actions that are based on this grasping bring pain, and more grasping.
In the dictionary, notice is a transitive verb, meaning it requires an object to become active. In Zen, we use notice in a manner that doesn’t require an object. Zen is the practice of objectless awareness.
To simply notice, is already not to grasp.
In the world of the relative, we can say the habit of grasping will fade, but this is not our concern. Zen practice is simply to pay attention now.
© 2011 Bev Forsman and Letters from Emptiness. If you share this material, please include direction to the original content. Thank you.