We always have some intentions in what we are doing. And apparently, our parents, friends, and society always tell us: Set your objectives! Make a plan!
But today I will tell you a secret. Listen carefully.
“No intention” brings you faster there, where you want.
Ask a zen master, he will tell you that it’s a simple truth. Read further to know why and how.
The thirst of existence
No judgment, because we are all human beings. We have the Buddist-called “thirst of existence”. We always want to have more. New house. More money. Being younger when we are old. Being older when we are young. More time with children to enjoy. Less time with children to relax… “That’s how societies have become more and more engaged in the race for the ever-increasing” (Kanshoji teaching).
This “thirst of existence” apparently gives us some kinds of sufferings. Effort to “try” too much (sometimes to lose our integrity) to obtain what we want. Unhappiness and disappointment when our objectives are not met…
While life seems to function differently…
Our life is a badminton game
Remember when you play badminton? If you strike with a big intention to catch your adversary by surprise, you’ll most probably miss it yourself! When you love someone feverishly, you’ll possibly have his or her love the moment you.. give up!
So what is the best strategy to reach the fastest all that you desire? Here it is…
Know what you want, but enjoy mindfully what is
If you can have a vision of your future, while mindfully and deeply appreciate the current situation, life seems to pave the best way for you.
Why? Because if we are too much into our desires, we lose our balance. Stay deeply in the present moment helps you enjoy what is. Completely free from the “intention” of obtaining something, you can create the most positive energy. Who says “positive energy”, says “success”!
As soon as we think that it is better elsewhere, that it is better later, we do not make the effort to taste the existence that is given to usTaiun JP Faure
Cleaning dishes is a good example of success
When you wash the dishes or chop vegetables, don’t rush with an “objective” to finish it. Instead, enjoy the actions of chopping. Feel warm water on your hands. You will find that the actions are very enjoyable. And with your surprise, the result is brilliant. Your dishes will be much cleaner and well-arranged. Vegetables beautifully chopped.
You got it, the secret of success in everything is the same!
“No tension, no intention” with meditation
The same for meditation. Have you ever “tried” to reach a meditative state? You will see that it can only be reached when you don’t “try”. When you sit down simply, without the “intention” to reach it.
If you join a zazen (sitting meditation), “no tension, no intention” is what you will always hear in a “kusen” (oral teaching). No tension of the body, no intention of the mind. With meditation, one observes desires, thoughts, emotions coming and going, without worrying about them.
Burnout means too much “intention”
“No tension, no intention” is a great practice to overcome burnout. Burnout usually happens when you put too much effort into what you do. Your body and mind say feverishly: We need to stop. Mindfully relax our body and let go of our thoughts bring us a “pure existence”. We are free from all fears and anxiety.
Success is the “process”
How about success? Everyone wants to get “there”, to succeed. But can you tell me your definition of “success”? From evident views from society, success means more money, higher on the corporate ladder, love… Someone with more wisdom may say: “Success is the level of happiness you feel”.
But I would say, success is the “process”. Mindfully enjoy the “process” of going, to reach where you want, with “no intention” and no stress. You can absolutely be sure you’ll be successful. Remember, it’s the same as washing dishes…
A state of flow
When we reach this state of”no intention”, we are in a “state of flow”.
It is a state where we let ourselves effortlessly follow downstream, instead of struggling upstream. You feel good at any moment. You radiate positive energy around you. We return to our “original mind”.
Yesterday in a zazen, my teacher said something interesting. He said, the “present moment indeed does not exist”. This thin space between the past, and the future, indeed, does not exist in itself. When you think about it, it’s already in the past. Or it’s still to come from the future.
When you know how to touch the present moment deeply, you touch eternity. You touch the past, and you touch the futureThich Nhat Hanh
The present is eternity. Touching that moment deeply, we touch the “original mind”. We are in a ‘state of flow” with the whole universe.
Sweeping the dust from the mirrors…
So now you know the secret. “No intention” brings you faster there, where you want. As human beings, we all have our “thirst of existence”. But we can mindfully enjoy what is, at the present moment.
By that, we are free from greed and aversion. We uncover ourselves from the “intention” to obtain what we want. It is like “sweeping the dust from the mirrors, where the mirror is the truth, and dust is the millions and trillions of thoughts that stop us to see beyond ’em” (The zen universe).
Promise me to think about it today?
Equanimity: How to stand out with a perfectly still mind