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Huike's Wall Meditation

In the story of Bodhidharma, he finds a monk named Huike in a cave, who takes part in his own kind of meditation where he would sit facing the cave wall, staring at it. Does anyone know why he did this, and does anyone practice this form? I am very curious and have my own thoughts, but I want to hear from you all first.


  • GuiGui Veteran
    edited September 2013
    This is zazen (just sitting) used in soto zen, and perhaps other traditions I have not heard of. I have heard the reason is to emulate Bodhidarma. Just not in a cave nor for 9 years. I find it reduces visual distraction. I find it comfortable. This is the method I choose.
  • I'm not sure I understand your answer. The main question is "Why did he choose to meditate staring at a wall?" Is it so he's not visually aware of anything that has the ability to physically move?
  • I don't know. You would have to ask him.
  • I think it is a form of sensory deprivation. Sitting facing the wall in a cave, there is minimal visual and auditory bombardment. What you have then is mainly mental stimulation in the form of thoughts, feelings and emotions.

    You observe those thoughts and feelings arise and cease thus developed detachment from them to gain freedom.
  • I've tried this technique too. I prefer to normally meditate with my eyes closed. However, I've noticed that sometimes I can see simple shapes and colours (usually one of the cats sitting in my lap...) unless I scrunch my eyes up really tight. Sometimes sitting in front of a blank wall helps with that. It's a bit of variety if nothing else.
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