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Zen is a unique feeling in which you are completely at one with yourself and the world around you. You feel total harmony as you whole being experiences clarity and inner peace that seem to be out of this world.

These moments of sublime tranquility can be likened to the moments when you are all alone by yourself, watching the sunset and listening to the rhythmic lapping of gentle waves at the shore.

Zen can be a journey rather than a religion. As a matter of fact, Zen is a philosophy of healthy living - a healthy lifestyle in which daily life problems are minimized, though not eradicated. Zen is a journey to relative truth. However, Zen does not alter any truth: it merely changes the way you perceive it. According to Zen, truth is relative, and the way you perceive it makes the difference. Just as John Milton, the famous poet, says: "The mind is its own place, and in itself can make Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven." It is all in your mind.

One can intuit the essence of Zen, but can never "consciously" pursue it. Because Zen emphasizes spontaneity of all matters, it does not encourage any conscious effort to achieve anything; even the essence of Zen has to be intuited, not to be acquired or pursued. The essence of Zen comes naturally to an individual through enlightenment or intuition.

Intuition is self-awakening: it may be attained by reflection of the four Noble Truths of Zen.

(1) The first Noble Truth is that human suffering is natural because you become what you are through your own experiences. Accordingly, you have to live within the constrains of your own experiences, and these constrains cause suffering.

(2) The second Noble Truth is that attachment further constrains you. You are impermanent, and everything around you is also impermanent, including your emotions and all material things. Buddha once said: "Attachment to anything impermanent is the source of human misery." The reason is that human craving is an attempt to make permanent out of what is impermanent.

(3) The third Noble Truth is that there is another way - the way of Zen, which is a way "through" rather than a way "out." In other words. Zen does not and will not get you out of your problems: you can only intuit through self-enlightenment the wisdom of knowing "how" to live with your problems.

(4) The fourth Noble Truth is that Zen does not have any hard and fast rules for you to follow, neither does it provide any direction or guideline. Your becoming enlightened - how, when, or if - uniquely depends on you. What Zen offers is a way of life based on spiritual virtues, which are the facets of human wisdom interacting with one another. These spiritual virtues include: saying the right thing, taking the right action, earning a living the right way, making the right effort, paying the right attention, having the right concentration; developing the right perspective; and getting the right thought.

The wisdom of Zen is profound: it offers tranquility amidst a world of turmoil; it makes sense out of the nonsense of this world. It is healthy living at its best.

About Author Stephen Lau :

For more information on healthy living, go to "The Seven Pillars of Wisdom" to find out what the seven pillars are: <a href="" target="_blank"></a> Stephen Lau is a writer and researcher. He has published several books and many websites on health, healing, depression, eating disorders, and golf. To get a FREE copy of his 143-page e-book "All-Round Weight Loss", go to: <a href="" target="_blank"></a>

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Article Added on Thursday, July 30, 2009
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