My Zen Experience

In my early thirties, I was reading two books alternately: "Existentialism" by John MacQuarrie, and "Zen Buddhism and Psychoanalysis" by Erich Fromm, D.T.Suzuki and Richard De Martino. At that time, I knew nothing about Zen Buddhism. I was familiar with Psychoanalysis, having read a bit of Sigmund Freud's work; in fact, that is the reason I bought the book.

One evening, I was sitting outside in a shaded area, reading one of the books. I think it was "Existentialism", although I am not sure since it happened so long ago; besides, both books were playing in my mind as I was reading them alternately. I was trying to get an understanding of Existentialism based on the following quote by the author from the work of John Paul Sartre:

"Man's existence precedes his essence. Man first of all exists, encounters himself, surges up in the world - and then defines himself afterwards.

If man is not definable, it is to begin with, he is nothing. He will not be anything until later, and then he will be what he makes of himself."
- Jean Paul Sartre

At the same time, the following quote from the lectures on Zen Buddhism by D.T.Suzuki in the book, Zen Buddhism and Psychoanalysis, came to me:

"When I look carefully
I see the nazuna blooming
by the hedge".
- Basho

"Flower in the crannied wall
I pluck you out of the crannies:-
Hold you here, root and all, in my hand,
Little flower - but if I could understand
What you are, root and all, and all in all,
I should know what God and man is."
- Tennyson

Somehow, I had a marvellous insight into a dimension that was so beautiful and soul-filling that words cannot describe it; at least, I cannot find the words to describe it. The sky was bathed in brilliant sunshine. The fleecy white clouds appeared fluffier and whiter, and the clear azure blue sky bluer than usual. It was a state of pure feeling and joyous emotion. Looking up int the sky, I felt as if I was being transported to another world. Time appeared to stand still and thought-activity seemed to be suspended. At least, I was not aware of any thoughts at that time. It was a direct realization of some unique and unusual dimension of consciousness that transcended the ordinary day-to-day reality.The most amazing and enjoyable part of the experience was the deep feeling of ecstasy that I felt, and which stayed with me for quite a while. I did not want to leave the spot where I was sitting, but to stay there and to continue to experience the beauty of the feeling. Unfortunately, I had to leave and get on with the matters of my daily life.

I can assure everyone that this was not an LSD trip or a high due to any drug since I have never taken such substances.

Comments (3)

exterion
I believe you ..once i had similar feelings.i didnt think tht u had been under the effect on drug.
It's a gift from God :)
lemonsieur
basho does that : ) thanks for reminding me of things i used to read while at university, everyday life misleads us. be well, and thanks again :)
Dreamer1027
Beautiful! Guess which books I'm going to read next! Thank you.

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