A great Zen Buddhist master, who was in charge of the Mayu Kagi monastery, had a cat which was his true passion in life. So, during meditation classes, he kept the cat by his side – in order to make the most of his company. One morning, the master – who was already quite old – passed away. His best disciple took his place. – What shall we do with the cat? – asked the other monks. As a tribute to the memory of their old instructor, the new master decided to allow the cat to continue attending the Zen Buddhist classes. Some disciples from the neighboring monasteries, traveling through those parts, discovered that, in one of the region’s most renowned temples, a cat took part in the meditation sessions. The story began to spread. Many years passed. The cat died, but as the students at the monastery were so used to its presence, they soon found another cat. Meanwhile, the other temples began introducing cats in their meditation sessions: they believed the cat was truly responsible for the fame and excellence of Mayu Kagi’s teaching. A university professor developed a thesis – which was accepted by the academic community – that felines have the ability to increase human concentration, and eliminate negative energy. And so, for a whole century, the cat was considered an essential part of Zen Buddhist studies in that region. From the Book: Like a flowing river~
When I meditate I my cat usually ends by my side, or in my lap, as I sit cross-legged on the floor. I call this practice Cat Meditation. As others have said, cats don’t come looking for attention, they simply approach and settle in. It’s quite powerful. The cat’s purr has a healing vibration and I find it one of the most soothing sounds and sensations. What’s better than having a peaceful, warm and loving companion who is an expert at meditation to accompany one’s practice? I’ve always been fascinated by how incredibly sensitive to energy, cats are.