A Guest Post by Baz
In 2012, I authored The Practical Buddhist, a spiritual memoir that chronicled my journey from what I call ‘Big Religion.’ My journey from organized religion to what I later termed Practical Buddhism was focused on rejecting Big Religion’s focus on the assumption of truth from another’s perspective (in my case, the Bible and all it includes as literal fact) in favor of the Buddha’s emphasis on living with honest, mindful intention and accepting as truth only that which you experience.
Not long after I made this change, my entire world view morphed from one that simple preached doing good and the consistent need to be redeemed for something for which I played no part whatsoever (original sin), to one that allowed me to discover my own truth.
I soon composed a sense of mission for my life as it represents what I’d most like to accomplish in the years I have left. It’s included above as an image.”
ZenJi and I worked together to reframe this new path in what we now call ‘Walking the ZenJo Path™. You can read about the path here. ZenJi also asked me, as a non-monastic, to share my thoughts about what it means to me to be walking this path. I’ll attempt to answer that, and why I think you should also, in the paragraphs below.
Part I – What Walking the ZenJo Path™ Means to Me
In short, this path brings the most meaning to my life. If I had to limit my post to just one statement, that would be it. But, I’m a writer and a blogger and there’s no way I can ever reduce my feelings to just one statement. 🙄
So instead, I’ll mention three of the most beneficial ways Walking the ZenJo Path™ brings meaning into my life.
1- The ZenJo Path™ provides the framework to make nearly everything a spiritual practice
The path’s daily practices include :
- spending time in silence
- embracing simplicity
- engaging in compassionate-kindness;
- and using my Zen-Journal Notebook to track and organize both my personal and professional lives
Therefore, nearly everything action I undertake can become a mindful, spiritual practice. This is the opposite of a ritual. In the past, I’ve referred to this as the “path of consecrated action,” whereby each action, no matter how small, is completed with reverent attention to all that it involves.
- Need to wash the dishes? – Do so with rapt attention and awareness of the water temperature, the scent of the dish soap, the feel of both.
- Going for a walk? – Do so without music or a podcast in your earbuds on occasion, and take note of what you see, smell, and hear.
- Commuting to work? – Smile at the person next to you in the subway, train, bus, or stopped in traffic.
Walking the ZenJo Path™ keeps me mindful of what I’m doing, what I’m feeling, and why.”
2- The ZenJo Path™ fits my introverted personality
If you’re familiar with the Meyers-Briggs Personality Indicator (MMBI), I score as an Introverted iNtuitive, Feeling, Judgement or INFJ Type. (A great blog post that outlines the INTJ can be found on IntervertDear.com in this post.) As an introvert, I struggle with being too out-there, being too public where I feel exceptionally vulnerable. It’s the main reason that I haven’t started a YouTube Channel for Zen-Journal.com. That’s definitely outside my comfort zone.
As an introvert, I naturally migrate to writing over talking: which is why there is so much content here on this site and why I’ve written so many books and manuals. However, because an INFJ requires solitude in order to deeply think about what he/she feels (I often say that I “feel at full volume.”), I work through most life issues in my Zen-Journal Notebook™. Because writing is a solitary undertaking, it actually reinforces my introverted nature. Still, it’s what works best for me.
Walking the ZenJo Path™ puts every thought, every action, and every motive into perspective.”
3- The ZenJo Path™ unite my Zen-Journal, my life’s endeavors, and my spiritual practices
The problem I had with using the Bullet Journal® system was that it was very cramped and required me to think smaller than I desired. Zen-Journal™ is un-designed to allow you all the space you need; space in calendars (because we use our smartphones for appointments and collections, thereby saving space), space to write, space to plan for the future beyond what BuJo® offers in the future planning mod, and much more.
Because Zen-Journal uses several Discipline Task Lists (DTLs) instead of one very long master list; We all have different Areas of Focus (AoF) and breaking them apart into DTLs not make organizing our thinking and planning, but reflects that we’re more than simply a To-Do list.
Life is complicated and I need a task and life management system that accommodates them. Zen-Journal brings them all together in one convenience place.
The Bottom Line: Walking the ZenJo Path™ unites my life instead of dividing it
When I used other analog task and life management system, I always felt disjointed somehow. Because my Zen-Journal Notebook links all facets of my life together— body, soul, and spirit.
It will do the same for you.
P.S. Did You know that ZenJi’s Dojo is free?