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Q280. Why is Zen meditation selfish?

A. What makes you think Zen meditation is selfish? Do you happen to think so because Zen doesn’t emphasise compassion during the teaching, that is to say, that we should help the poor or those in trouble? Zen expresses the same message in a different way.


Zen teaches people that we are one with the poor and the weak, that is, they are part of us and we are part of them by getting people to realise the truth that we are oneness with all the universe, rather than say that we should help them.




Which is the more appealing and more persuasive of the following two scenarios, “This boy lost his parents and has no food to eat and no shelter to live in. We should help him because he is likely to become a criminal and harm our society in the future if he is left uncared for now” or “Take a close look at this boy. This is part of you.”? This is what the Biblical scripture, ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’ means.



©Boo Ahm


All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway