Zen and Yamabushi

It’s all about acceptance

Yamabushi and Zen are extremely similar. Both are about acceptance.

Zen monks sit in lotus position as this puts them in the position where they can best receive. Their legs stay put so as to not move about the world, and their arms are held in one position so as not to manipulate it.

All that’s left is acceptance.

Haguro Yamabushi even have acceptance as a sort of mantra that is constantly repeated. Uketamo literally means ‘I accept’.

As far as I understand it, Zen acceptance comes through meditation. Meditation is seen as the best way to come to terms with reality, by focusing on being in the moment and all that exists: here, now, self, and that alone.

Yamabushi acceptance comes about through being out in nature and absorbing her lessons. It’s hard not to accept being in the moment when you’re put in precarious situations where one foul move could prove fatal.

Yamabushi do also partake in meditation called Tokogatame, literally ‘hardening of the ground’, where you solidify your place in the world.

Both practices are extremely beneficial. In fact, anything that teaches you to accept your current self for who you are is. Zen and Yamabushi are just two extremely practical ways at achieving that aim.



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Sakata City, Yamagata, Japan 


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