Getting into Zen Meditation

Following a period of struggling with a mental condition, Kouji Miki turned to Zen meditation, a practice that played a pivotal role in his recovery. This transformative journey inspired him to establish his own venture, Zen 2.0, as a sincere expression of gratitude.

Healing through Zen meditation

Nick: We connected on LinkedIn a few months ago, and you were busy promoting your Zen 2.0 conference that's obviously on Zen and mindfulness. And that attracts speakers from all around the world.

And a few of your speakers have been guests on my podcast: Ken Mogi and Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu. So do you want to talk about that conference? How long have you been holding it? And what is the goal of that conference?

Kouji: Actually, the project start from 2015, and I lost my job because of the huge economic shock in 2009, and I had a bad mental condition. I have to recover from my mental illness, so I started Zen meditation in my house.

After three months meditation, I became fine. And I started my own business. So I feel great gratitude feeling for Zen Buddhism. That's the reason why I started Zen 2.0 to express my gratitude for them.

Nick: That's quite an amazing story. The financial crisis came along, you lost your employment, you fell into some depression or had struggled with mental health issues. So why do you think you moved to Zen rather than, let’s say, maybe other options like medication or counseling? What was appealing about Zen?

Kouji: I felt when I had a mental illness, I think I should go to the hospital, but I was afraid of addiction of mental drugs. That's the reason why I started searching how to cure by myself. And I start searching with many keywords like mental illness, how to stabilize my mind or something like that.

And I found some books and also found Zen meditation on the internet. So I searched YouTube about how to do meditation. First I have to find some meditation videos of Japanese monks. But in and Zen Buddhism tradition, there is a rule that they don't know talk about Zen itself.

So I don't know how to definite meditation. But I finally found that the video about how to do Zen meditation; it was created by an American guy, he was living in Japan for maybe more than 10 years. And in this video, he talked much about how to do Zen meditation. It was a very attractive way, so I started to learn how to do Zen meditation.