Maintaining the Body

We awaken via our body. Without our body we cannot do spiritual practice. In Buddhism we often hear the expression “The body is a temple”. So we have an obligation to take good care of our body, in the same way that we take good care of our automobile if we want it to run trouble free.

Many people don’t want to have to think about their body. They want their body to perform well and support them without being given any attention. They expect their body to tag along, regardless of how many demands they put upon it, what they feed it, or how much they abuse it.

When you think about it, this doesn’t make much sense. What is there in life that will perform well for many decades without being given regular maintenance? Certainly not our bodies. Some people will get away with this when they are young, but once they get into their forties and fifties the body is not as resilient as it used to be, and health issues begin to appear, sometimes suddenly and mysteriously. We can prevent many of these older-age symptoms if we begin taking care of our body while we are still in good health.

If we make a firm commitment to our spiritual practice, then we have a responsibility to take care of the vehicle via which we practice. Here at the Zen Center we teach our practitioners to cultivate both body and mind.