Here the practitioner sits in a chair that is cushioned in the back in order to provide support. Proper alignment and stability are achieved by moving the hips all the way to the back of the seat and placing a cushion behind the mid-back. In this way, the trunk is positioned slightly forward of the hips. The cushion under the feet is added as needed to align the knees just lower than the hips but so as not to cut off circulation to the lower legs and feet. Hands are in the traditional universal mudra.
This is another view of the chair sitting posture that shows the back and foot cushions from a different view.
For some people with shoulder or arm pain, placing the hands in a “diamond mudra” on the upper thighs relieves pain. In this mudra, the hands are placed with index fingers and thumbs forming a “diamond” and fingers spread to provide dynamic tension. It might also be helpful to press slightly against the thighs to take pressure off the shoulders.
Zazen Instruction In Person
Everyone who provides Zazen instruction at Santa Cruz Zen Center is knowledgeable in these postures and can assist you in finding a comfortable posture in the Zendo. Please feel free to contact Zen Center at 831.457.0206 if you would like more information.
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