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  • Summary

  • Audible presents "Zen: A Way of Life", an Audible Original. Om Swami's thoughts, in Om Swami's voice.

    In this series, Om Swami shares the essence of the Zen Living, combing the various branches of Zen and its associated techniques, to help the listener master the Zen way of life.

    There are 8 core episodes and 4 Bonus ones covering the following: Zazen, Wall-gazing, Osoji and many more to calm and center the mind while living in the world. Whether you are searching for peace, or have a desire to attain Satori (instant realization), or merely wish to increase your competence and effectiveness, the Zen perspective to daily living has all the answers. The wisdom shared in the series is drawn from Om Swami’s personal experience and rigorous practices.

    Disclaimer: This show is meant for Listener’s entertainment. The opinions expressed on this show are personal to the individuals appearing in the show, and not those of Audible. This show is not intended to outrage, insult, defame or wound or hurt any religion or the religious sentiments, belief or feelings of any person, entity, class or community or to denigrate any institution or person, living or dead. This show is not a substitute for a professional’s advice. Listener’s discretion is advised.

    ©2020 Audible Singapore Private Limited (P)2020 Audible Singapore Private Limited
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Episodes
  • Introduction & Background

    Zen: A Way of Life, Episode 1
    Sep 21 2020
    This episode covers the introduction and philosophy behind the Zen way of living. Om Swami touches upon the first discourse of Buddha and the highest wisdom one can possess. The core principle of Zen and how it is different from traditional path of meditation. The key feature of this episode is the unique exercise of the ‘Silence of the Mind’.
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    35 mins
  • Bodhidharma & Zen Sutra

    Zen: A Way of Life, Episode 2
    Sep 21 2020
    This episode covers the story of Bodhidharma and how he developed and propounded the insightful technique of Wall-gazing. Om Swami shares with us his personal experience of Wall-gazing, and it’s many benefits. The key feature of this episode is Wall-gazing and its variations.
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    51 mins
  • Elements of posture

    Zen: A Way of Life, Episode 3
    Sep 21 2020
    This episode covers the foundation and preparation needed to practice the techniques of Zen. In his trademark humorous style, Om Swami shares the importance of maintaining the correct posture while meditating and it’s various aspects. The key feature of this episode is the role of Om Chanting in improving meditation, and its connection with the three states of consciousness.
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    38 mins

What listeners say about Zen: A Way of Life

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  • GwP
  • 28-10-21

I dig the Swami lectures -he is unique!

Kind of disagree with the other review because I think the Swami is not being all that serious in his lectures. He laughs often and his approach is unique and interesting to me as a person who has deepened my meditation practice.

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  • Brian P.
  • 19-10-21

Good info on Zen Buddhism, so hokeyness though

I enjoyed and learned something from the first 3 or 4 episodes (skipping through the chanting and zazen sessions because I wasn’t looking to actively participate). The audio is descent considering it’s a recorded lecture series during a retreat. However, I decided to skip ahead to the Q&A episodes and couldn’t help but immediately lose confidence in Om Swami when I heard him purport that occasionally, to some (but importantly not all) dedicated followers in need, Swami will, upon his own volition, enter the dreams of those followers and offer advice to help them achieve the breakthrough they’re seeking. It’s a shame because I’ve recently been really digging into Buddhism and establishing my own lay practice, and I was enjoying this podcast and how much it jived with what I’ve learned so far. But if Swami is going around convincing followers he can enter their dreams if he chooses and they’re dedicated enough, I can’t help but start to suspect a rat. To be honest, this feeling/suspicion started in the episode about proper seated meditation posture. I’ve read the 12 points before, and all that was fine. But then he started telling about how, before leaving on a 2 month trip, he gave a monk a koan on which to meditate, and GUARANTEED a breakthrough within like 4-6 weeks. When Swami returned, the breakthrough hadn’t happened. Swami was incredulous, and immediately figured the problem, of course, lay with the monk. After all (in contrast to the Buddha’s advice to use what works for you and dismiss what doesn’t) if it worked for Swami it should work for everyone. So he nitpicked the monk’s seated meditation posture, and found a tiny positional error. The monk left, and within like 24 hours reported he’d had the breakthrough—the sense of his body dissolving into a million pieces (sounds rather cliché white lie to get out of some homework to me). To be fair, I haven’t studied the stricter sects of Buddhism, and I feel like Swami may lean toward or come from that lineage, but I also sense some pernicious ego at work. I may be wrong, and apologize if I am, but I still call bulls#*t on entering people’s dreams, and therefore, I’m out. I highly recommend Thich Nhat Hanh and anything from Plum Village for a better introduction to Zen Buddhism. Thay doesn’t claim to be semi-omnipotent.