There is nothing to achieve in Zen meditation. To have a goal or target is to imagine something, and to strive for it. Trying to achieve is what we call busy-ness of mind. Trying to achieve is not Zen meditation.
So do we sit zazen without care, without interest? To take up the posture in this way, also cultivates an active mind. Daydreams, fantasies, and memories fill the posture.
Sit zazen simply—unadorned by goals and ideas. How is this possible? It is possible when effort transforms into wholehearted participation in this life. Zazen is full participation in posture without ideas of me or posture.
With thorough straightforward interest, we do not find a persistent self with which to identify. Nor do we find a separate activity to call mine. We do not set ourselves out in array with goals and agendas, but fully participate in a life so vast, so thorough, that goals, reasons, and explanations can find no space or purchase. The fabricated counterfeit known as my mind has faded a w a y … no trace.
How then, do we live life in the world of beliefs … including the one of self and other? Thoroughly. As compassion.
Life is constantly expressing—unhindered and without regard for our beliefs. This can be known directly in meditation, but meditating to know will not bring knowing.