Q178. Isn’t Zen meditation against Christianity? Do I have to cease being Christian in order to practice Zen meditation?

A. I never ask people to change their religions or cease keeping their religions, but encourage them to be better adherents of their religions than before. I tell people to realise what the object of their faith is, whether God or Buddha in order that they may be better followers of their religions.

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Saying that you believe in Buddha or God without knowing what or who they are, is affronting them, not paying homage to them. Let’s suppose there is a person who always says that he loves you. He doesn’t know you, and never tries to find out where you are and what you are like. However, he always wants you to help him. Does his love for you make sense? That is blind faith and idol worship. There is an old saying, ‘Seeing is believing’. Only when you can see them can you have true faith in God or Buddha and be a genuine believer in your religion.

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

 

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