Walking Meditation – Kinhin

Our At-Home meditation day is coming up this Saturday and I hope there will be many of you who can sit for some of the day. We start at 8.00 am GMT and end at 4.00 pm with an on-line ‘Tea’ using a conferencing facility called GoToMeetings. If you would like to join in the tea please drop me a line either directly to my email address if you have it or via the contact form if you don’t. I can then send you the invitation to the meeting with details of how to join it.  If you would like to do a no-stress trial run connecting using this facility I can do that with you on Friday. Just let me know a range of times you can do that.

As promised I have found instructions for doing walking meditation (Jp.kinhin) which means one doesn’t cover much ground during one ten minute walking period. Helpful for those who are sitting and walking in a small space. I’ve copied and pasted the instruction from  the Japanese Soto Zen site. All thanks and recognition to their efforts. Please note: we do not tend to practice kinhin like this in any of our temples, priories or meditation groups. So this is really for the purpose of those walking in a small space at home. It is a bit tricky to keep ones balance moving with such small steps by the way.

How to do Zazen-17When doing kinhin, walk clockwise around the room, holding your hand in shashu position. From the waist up, your posture should be the same as that in zazen. Take the first step with your right foot. Advance by taking only half step for each full breath (one exhalation and inhalation).

Walk slowly and smoothly as if you were standing in one place. Do not drag your feet or make noise. Walk straight ahead, and when turning, always turn to right. The word kinhin means to go straight. When you finish kinhin, stop and bow. Then walk at a normal pace around the room until you return to your seat.

The schedule for the day, Saturday 20th is to sit twenty minutes on the hour and half hour with 10 minutes walking meditation following the meditation periods. I’ll be scheduling in a break for food and probably a couple of rest breaks. With this lovely weather I can see no reason why we could not do the retreat outside. A park bench in a secluded spot would work OK.

Please leave a comment to this post letting fellow sitters know you will be doing part or all of the day and where in the world you will be! If you are in North America I will endevour to sit with you after the tea at 4.00 pm staring at 9.00 am PT as I know on the West coast you will just be starting your Saturday.

One thought on “Walking Meditation – Kinhin

  1. Sadly, this time round family commitments got in the way making it next to impossible to join in the online schedule. However there were moments when I could pause for reflection in the knowledge it was going on so all was not entirely lost.

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