Q52. What shall I do when I don’t seem to make any progress in my Zen practice?

A. That is a very common feeling novice practitioners can have. You don’t have to think you are not making progress because you don’t know what progress is like, and I wonder what your standard of making progress is. If you can keep good focus on the question, you are doing well regardless of whether you feel a change or not. If you can’t make concentration on your question, ask yourself what thinks you can’t make concentration and you are not making progress. In other words, trace back your negative thinking to its root.
Your negative thinking is the very form of your final goal.

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All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway.

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