“Zen Buddhism is a straightforward and practical teaching, which when understood and practiced is capable of liberating man from his deep seated fears and anxieties so he can live with peace and dignity.“
~ Philip Kapleau, Roshi
A definition of Zen: to be at peace… back to wholeness, often through Meditation.
“A mother is someone to shelter and guide us,
To love us, whatever we do,
With a warm understanding and infinite patience,
And wonderful gentleness, too.
A mother possesses incredible wisdom And wonderful insight and skill – In each human heart is that one special corner Which only a mother can fill!”
~ Katherine Nelson Davis
What is a Zen Mama? She is a devoted mother who has tried to stop worrying, who has let go of the attachment of an outcome and in doing so has become closer to her children.
How do you stop worrying? Well, you don’t! You just change how you worry. You change your attitude. You don’t worry about the small stuff. You don’t worry out loud. (Nothing turns off a child more than too much worrying. It tells them you don’t accept them as they are.) Don’t worry about what others think. For instance, here’s some things you can stop worrying about:
• If your baby is still using a pacifier.
• When preschooler chooses his own clothes and he’s wearing plaid with stripes.
• If your elementary student doesn’t always do well in spelling.
• When you’re middle schooler’s pants are riding too low.
• If you sophomore in high school can’t decide where to go to college.
You may have real worries like speech problems, learning disabilities, illness or abuse problems. Seek professional help instead of worrying. Solving your problems or working towards solving them will make your worry seem more manageable.
How do you let go? This is difficult! You’re so attached to your worry. It’s like a crazy making friend. You know you have to let go, yet your brain keeps thinking about the worry. Thinking makes it so. So the first thing you need to do is to pretend that you’ve let go. As Wayne Dyer says, “Change your thoughts, change your life.” Eventually your brain will believe your new thoughts, then finally you’ll see changes. Letting go of attachments and outcomes is a freeing thing.
How do you become closer to your kids? When you’re not worrying that their life is a mess, you stop criticizing and being mad at them. Slowly they feel that you’re trusting them more and they open up and want to be around you. It’s amazing and it does work.
By the way, being a Zen Mama doesn’t mean you don’t set limits. It doesn’t mean you don’t care. It means you care but you’ve stopped being controlling. You’re not as attached to the outcome. It means setting limits with calmness, not anger and trust, not worry.
Hope this clears up the Zen Mama definition a little! Try being a little more Zen! You’ll be happier and so will your kids.
“If you change the way you look at things,
the things you look at change.”