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The Sound of One Hand: Reaching Beyond the limits of Traditional Ink Painting

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Be Like the Buddha Cat

Buddha Cat 

Most animals are full of gratitude for the present moment. Our feline friends just might be among the greatest Buddhist teachers on the planet. Cats embody Buddhist qualities and principles in a natural, effortless way. The following are six examples of Buddhist wisdom from cats:

1. Embrace and Savor the Moment

Embrace and savor the moment and  cats are no exception. Cats sleep when they are tired and eat when they are hungry; conversely, the unenlightened human mind tends to think a hundred thoughts before sleeping and while eating. Strive to embrace and savor each moment without distractions or mind chatter.

2. Make Use of Koans

Some Zen masters have been known to meditate for years on a single koan. The cat’s favorite koan is a simple one: Meow. The definition of koans lies beyond logic, and diligent repetition just might lead you to the gateless gate.

3. Move Mindfully

Cats are known for their ability to walk gracefully over cluttered and challenging terrain. Even if they stumble, they always seem to land on their feet. Remember to move softly and mindfully in your life with each step, and you will be on the road to Enlightenment.

4. Be Focused and Patient

A cat can watch a mouse hole for as long as it takes to pounce at the perfect moment. They embody the one-pointed mind, right concentration and “maintaining evenness.” While waiting, they are alert, still, and present in the moment. Strive to enjoy the fullness of waiting, anticipation, and the gaps between activity – and between thoughts – in your own life as well.

5. Be Unwavering In Your Faith

There are stories of lost cats traversing hundreds of miles to find their way home. The precious jewel of Enlightenment may seem elusive, but it is the destiny of us all. Whether in this lifetime or another, our awakening is assured and progress can be made each day. Be unwavering in your faith in your journey toward Enlightenment.

6. Chant For the Joy of It

In addition to meditation, chanting can be a valuable element of a Buddhist practice. It quiets the mind, centers the spirit, provides a focal point and exudes a positive intention. Cats tend to purr when they are happiest, and the sound is at once joyful and peaceful. Strive to bring joy and equanimity into your Buddhist chanting practice.

There are Zen masters among us, and many of them are cats. Whether you are a cat owner or just appreciate them, there is much to learn from these sleek, graceful animals. Strive to remember and embody these six gems of Buddhist wisdom from cats. 
* From Buddha Groove 

Here is a great book to guide you and your  Zen Cat within. Meditate along with the verses to gain a greater understanding of you, your life and your purpose. Find the meaning of truth in these verses and how to find it in the world around you. Let your inner Zen Cat guide you to enlightenment.

Casey Shannon
Director of North America Branch ~ ICCPS
International Chinese Calligraphy and Ink Painting Society

国際中国書法国画家協会アメリカ支部:Ms. Casey Shannon アメリカ現代水墨画家
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