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The name Zazen in Chinese / Japanese...

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Personalize your custom “Zazen” project by clicking the button next to your favorite “Zazen” title below...

Sit in Meditation


 zuò chán
 za zen
Sit in Meditation Scroll

坐禪 describes the act of sitting in a state of deep meditation.

You'll notice that the second character is Chan/Zen (often used to title the meditative form of Buddhism).

In Korean Hanja, this means “religious meditation” (roughly the same as the Chinese definition).

Buddhists may define this as sitting in dhyāna, abstract meditation, fixed abstraction, or contemplation.

座禅Japanese note: This will make sense in Japanese but the Kanji shown to the left are partially in ancient/traditional Japanese form. Japanese Buddhists may use 坐禪, 坐禅, 座禪, or 座禅. The most standard/modern Japanese form of this word is shown to the right. Click on the Kanji to the right (instead of the button above) if you want this specifically Japanese version.

Hishiryo / Not-Thinking

 fēi sī liáng
 hi shi ryou
Hishiryo / Not-Thinking Scroll

Hishiryō (非思量) literally means not-thinking.

Hishiryo can be described as a state of mind beyond thinking and non-thinking during the practice of Zazen.

Shiryō (思量) means “thinking,” and hi (非) is a prefix for negation and opposition.

Therefore, hishiryo amounts to “unthink” or “not the matter of thinking.” The word hishiryo appears in Dogen Zenji’s Fukanzazengi, Shobogenzo Zazengi, Shobogenzo Zazenshin, and Keizan Zenji’s Zazen Yojinki. It is one of the most important words used to describe zazen. Hishiryo in these writings comes from a dialogue between Yakusan Igen (745-828) and an unnamed monk, which is described in Keitoku, Dentoroku, and other Zen texts.

The above is an abridged except from School of Shodo: Hishiryo
I suggest you visit that page for a full explanation.

 zhǐ guǎn dǎ zuò
 shi kan ta za
Shikantaza Scroll

只管打坐 is the Japanese Buddhist term shikantaza which represents zazen meditation in which one focuses on sitting without actively seeking enlightenment.

Sometimes this is translated as “meditation of just sitting” or “meditation practice where one stays intensely focused without focusing on any particular object.”

Sometimes written, 祗管打坐 with the same pronunciation and perceived meaning.

 jiē xīn
Sesshin Scroll

接心 is a Japanese Buddhist term meaning concentration or a period of intensive zazen.

While 接心 is the most common way to write this, other variants include 攝心 (Traditional Chinese), 摂心 (alternate Japanese), and 摄心 (Simplified Chinese). If you need any of these alternate forms, just let me know and I will set it up with the calligrapher for you.

While this is a Japanese term, it will be recognized by most Chinese folks at a Japanese Buddhist term and they will pronounce it as “jiē xīn” in Mandarin.

Not the results for zazen that you were looking for?

Below are some entries from our dictionary that may match your zazen search...


If shown, 2nd row is Simp. Chinese

Simple Dictionary Definition


see styles

More info & calligraphy:

Sit in Meditation
(Buddhist term) zazen (seated Zen meditation, usu. in a cross-legged position)



see styles
zuò chán
    zuo4 chan2
tso ch`an
    tso chan

More info & calligraphy:

Sit in Meditation
to sit in meditation; to meditate
To sit in dhyāna, i.e. abstract meditation, fixed abstraction, contemplation; its introduction to China is attributed to Bodhidharma (though it came earlier), and its extension to Tiantai.


see styles

More info & calligraphy:

(noun/participle) (1) (Buddhist term) concentration; (2) period of intensive zazen


see styles
zhǐ guǎn dǎ zuò
    zhi3 guan3 da3 zuo4
chih kuan ta tso
 shikan taza

More info & calligraphy:

(Buddhist term) shikantaza (zazen meditation in which one focuses on sitting without actively seeking enlightenment)
meditation of just sitting


see styles
dǎ chéng yī piàn
    da3 cheng2 yi1 pian4
ta ch`eng i p`ien
    ta cheng i pien
 tajouippen / tajoippen

More info & calligraphy:

Merge / Unify
to merge; to integrate; to become as one; to unify together
(yoji) {Buddh} (See 座禅・ざぜん) intensive zazen meditation on a subject; knocking all into one
To knock all into one, bring things together, or into order.


see styles
(Buddhist term) zazen (seated Zen meditation, usu. in a cross-legged position)


see styles
    shoushin / shoshin
(noun/participle) (1) (Buddhist term) concentration; (2) period of intensive zazen


see styles
(1) (See 座禅) room for zazen meditation; room for Buddhist practices; (2) Zen monk's quarters; (3) head priest (of a Zen temple)


see styles
jǐng cè
    jing3 ce4
ching ts`e
    ching tse
 keisaku; kyousaku; kouzaku; kyoushaku(ok) / kesaku; kyosaku; kozaku; kyoshaku(ok)
    けいさく; きょうさく; こうざく; きょうしゃく(ok)
(1) (abbreviation) (called けいさく in Rinzai Zen, きょうさく in Soto Zen) (See 警覚策励,座禅) Zen stick (used by a Zen priest to strike an inattentive zazen sitter); warning stick (Rinzai Zen); encouragement stick (Soto Zen); (2) (けいさく only) horsewhip
A switch to awaken sleepers during an assembly for meditation.



see styles
zuò chán yí
    zuo4 chan2 yi2
tso ch`an i
    tso chan i
Instructions for Zazen



see styles
zuò chán táng
    zuo4 chan2 tang2
tso ch`an t`ang
    tso chan tang
The monks' assembly room.



see styles
sān shí zuò chán
    san1 shi2 zuo4 chan2
san shih tso ch`an
    san shih tso chan
 sanji zazen
The thrice a day meditation— about 10 a.m. and 4 and 8 p.m.



see styles
zuò chán fǎ yào
    zuo4 chan2 fa3 yao4
tso ch`an fa yao
    tso chan fa yao
 Zazen hōyō
Essentials of Seated Meditation


see styles
(Buddhist term) shikantaza (zazen meditation in which one focuses on sitting without actively seeking enlightenment)


see styles
 keikakusakurei / kekakusakure
(See 座禅) Zen stick (used by a Zen priest to strike an inattentive zazen sitter)



see styles
zuò chán yòng xīn jì
    zuo4 chan2 yong4 xin1 ji4
tso ch`an yung hsin chi
    tso chan yung hsin chi
 Zazen yōjin ki
Admonitions for Zazen


see styles
 sesshin; shoushin(摂心) / sesshin; shoshin(摂心)
    せっしん; しょうしん(摂心)
(noun/participle) (1) {Buddh} concentration; (noun/participle) (2) (See 坐禅) period of intensive zazen



see styles
pǔ quàn zuò chán yí
    pu3 quan4 zuo4 chan2 yi2
p`u ch`üan tso ch`an i
    pu chüan tso chan i
 Fukan zazen gi
Universal Promotion of the Principles of Meditation



see styles
xiū xí zhǐ guān zuò chán fǎ yào
    xiu1 xi2 zhi3 guan1 zuo4 chan2 fa3 yao4
hsiu hsi chih kuan tso ch`an fa yao
    hsiu hsi chih kuan tso chan fa yao
 Shushū shikan zazen hōyō
Essentials of Practicing Śamatha and Vipaśyanā Meditation


see styles
{Buddh} zazen (seated Zen meditation, usu. in a cross-legged position)

The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...

Title CharactersRomaji (Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Sit in Meditation坐禪
za zen / zazenzuò chán / zuo4 chan2 / zuo chan / zuochantso ch`an / tsochan / tso chan
非思量hi shi ryou
hi shi ryo
fēi sī liáng
fei1 si1 liang2
fei si liang
fei ssu liang
Shikantaza只管打坐shi kan ta za
zhǐ guǎn dǎ zuò
zhi3 guan3 da3 zuo4
zhi guan da zuo
chih kuan ta tso
Sesshin接心sesshin / seshinjiē xīn / jie1 xin1 / jie xin / jiexinchieh hsin / chiehhsin
In some entries above you will see that characters have different versions above and below a line.
In these cases, the characters above the line are Traditional Chinese, while the ones below are Simplified Chinese.


Lookup Zazen in my Japanese & Chinese Dictionary

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A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

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single-character wall scroll.
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A professional Chinese Calligrapher

Professional calligraphers are getting to be hard to find these days.
Instead of drawing characters by hand, the new generation in China merely type roman letters into their computer keyboards and pick the character that they want from a list that pops up.

There is some fear that true Chinese calligraphy may become a lost art in the coming years. Many art institutes in China are now promoting calligraphy programs in hopes of keeping this unique form of art alive.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

Even with the teachings of a top-ranked calligrapher in China, my calligraphy will never be good enough to sell. I will leave that to the experts.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

The same calligrapher who gave me those lessons also attracted a crowd of thousands and a TV crew as he created characters over 6-feet high. He happens to be ranked as one of the top 100 calligraphers in all of China. He is also one of very few that would actually attempt such a feat.

Check out my lists of Japanese Kanji Calligraphy Wall Scrolls and Old Korean Hanja Calligraphy Wall Scrolls.

Some people may refer to this entry as Zazen Kanji, Zazen Characters, Zazen in Mandarin Chinese, Zazen Characters, Zazen in Chinese Writing, Zazen in Japanese Writing, Zazen in Asian Writing, Zazen Ideograms, Chinese Zazen symbols, Zazen Hieroglyphics, Zazen Glyphs, Zazen in Chinese Letters, Zazen Hanzi, Zazen in Japanese Kanji, Zazen Pictograms, Zazen in the Chinese Written-Language, or Zazen in the Japanese Written-Language.

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