March 27, 2023

Why have there been so many apocalyptic Zombie movies and TV shows over the last several years? I think I have an idea. Photo by Simon Wijers on Unsplash When I used to teach beginning meditation in a yoga studio near me, I would ask this same question. As a set up. To show how Zen meditation might be useful to people in ways other than lowering blood pressure or stress reduction. I took the position that the reason there... Read more

January 23, 2023

A while back I was in New York City, a city famous for its sights, and not so famously for its smells. During our time in NYC there was one smell that seemed to dominate the rest in this bustling city. Weed. The smell of cannabis was everywhere. Now, for the record, I am completely in favor of the full and complete legalization and decriminalization of Marijuana. I am also in favor of the dismissal and re-sentencing of Marijuana convictions,... Read more

October 4, 2022

This is a piece on how the practice of Zen Buddhism can support and sustain a person on the journey of recovery. So to begin, how might we define recovery? The term “recovery” is increasingly used in connection with healing from mental illness, but it is perhaps most commonly associated with overcoming addiction to Alcohol and other drugs, as in my case. I hope to relate recovery to not just overcoming addiction to substances, sex, food, etc. but to overcoming... Read more

August 22, 2022

There’s a phrase I have heard in Zen circles that goes “Die before you die.” My understanding is that this idea has its roots in the Sufi spiritual tradition, but many Zen folk have picked it up as a teaching tool. I was thinking about this teaching recently because I had a moment where I experienced a little death. In my life these little death’s usually take the form of an emerging awareness that an identity, or ideology that had... Read more

August 10, 2022

How Might Zen Buddhism Support and Sustain Addiction Recovery? Welcome to the Zen and Recovery blog on Patheos. My name is Dr. Chris Kaishin Hoff, and I will be your liminal space tour guide on this journey of discovery that I hope you will join. A little about my Zen and Recovery journey. Saving all the dirty details, I entered recovery after years of alcohol and drug misuse at the age of 26. I discovered meditation shortly thereafter. A friend... Read more

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