80 Zen Quotes And Sayings To Calm Your Mind

Looking for inspirational quotes about Zen living? We have rounded up the best collection of Zen quotes, sayings, proverbs, and captions (with images and pictures) to inspire you to calm your mind and bring stillness in your life.

Zen is the Japanese name for a Buddhist tradition practiced by millions of people across the world.

The term Zen is derived from the Japanese pronunciation of the Middle Chinese word (chán), an abbreviation of (chánnà), which is a Chinese transliteration of the Sanskrit word ध्यान dhyāna (“meditation”).\

Also See: Balance Quotes

Zen emphasizes rigorous self-restraint, meditation-practice and the subsequent insight into nature of mind and nature of things (without arrogance or egotism), and the personal expression of this insight in daily life, especially for the benefit of others.

These positive zen sayings will inspire you to start your mornings with meditation, peacefulness, and by being mindful.

Also check out our post on relax quotes and take a break quotes which will inspire you to have more mental clarity, focus, and give up the habit of overthinking.

Top 10 Zen Quotes

  1. “To seek is to suffer. To seek nothing is bliss.” – Bodhidharma

  2. “Do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.” ― Dalai Lama

    zen quotes
    zen quotes

  3. “When you realize nothing is lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” – Lao Tzu

  4. “Each morning, we are born again. What we do today is what matters most.” ― Buddha

  5. “Zen is not some kind of excitement, but concentration on our usual everyday routine.”– Shunryu Suzuki

  6. “Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” – Buddha                                                                                                                                 

    zen sayings
    zen sayings

  7. “All that we are, is the result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think, we become.” ― Buddha

  8. “Wisdom says we are nothing. Love says we are everything. Between these two our life flows.” – Jack Kornfield

  9. “To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.” ― Thích Nhat Hạnh

  10. “The true purpose of Zen is to see things as they are, to observe things as they are, and to let everything go as it goes.” – Shunryu Suzuki

Famous Zen Quotes To Set You Free

  1. “Life is a balance of holding on and letting go.” ― Rumi

  2. “Words are the fog one has to see through.” ― Zen Saying

  3. “If you realize you have enough, you are truly rich.” ― Lao Tzu                                                       

    zen proverbs
    zen proverbs

  4. “Change how you see and see how you change.” ― Zen Proverb

  5. “Get the inside right. The outside will fall into place.” ― Eckhart Tolle

    zen quotes images
    zen quotes images

  6. “If you are irritated by every rub, how will you get polished?” – Zen Thought

  7. “Surrender to what is. Let go of what was. Have faith in what will be.” – Sonia Ricotti

  8. “Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.” – Pema Chodron

  9. “The practice of Zen is forgetting the self in the act of uniting with something.” – Koun Yamada

  10. “The most important point is to accept yourself and stand on your two feet.” ― Shunryu Suzuki

  11. “Self-realization is effortless. What you are trying to find is what you already are.” ― Ramesh Balsekar

  12. “The feeling that any task is a nuisance will soon disappear if it is done in mindfulness.” – Thich Nhat Hahn

  13. “We sweep up the fallen leaves in the garden. But we don’t hate the trees for dropping them.” – Zen Master Mamiya

  14. “Let go over a cliff, die completely, and then come back to life — after that you cannot be deceived.” – Zen Proverb

  15. “Everything that has a beginning has an ending. Make your peace with that and all will be well.” – Jack Kornfield

  16. “It may look as if the situation is creating the suffering, but ultimately this is not so – your resistance is.” – Eckhart Tolle

  17. “To think in terms of either pessimism or optimism oversimplifies the truth. The problem is to see reality as it is.” – Thich Nhat Hạnh

  18. “As a bee gathering nectar does not harm or disturb the color and fragrance of the flower; so do the wise move through the world.” – Buddha

  19. “If you are depressed, you are living in the past. If you are anxious, you are living in the future. If you are at peace, you are living in the present.” ― Lao Tzu

  20. “Silence is essential. We need silence, just as much as we need air, just as much as plants need light. If our minds are crowded with words and thoughts, there is no space for us.” ― Thich Nhat Hanh

Short Zen Quotes To Inspire You

  1. “Act without expectation.” ― Lao Tzu

  2. “There is no mistake in nature.” ― Byron Katie

  3. “Love is the absence of judgment.” ― Dalai Lama

  4. “Think with your whole body.” – Taisen Deshimar

  5. “With our thoughts, we make the world.” – Buddha

  6. “Silence isn’t empty, it’s full of answers.” – Unknown                                                                       

     Zen Quotes to Calm Your Mind
    Zen Quotes to Calm Your Mind

  7. “Awareness is the greatest agent for change.” – Eckhart Tolle

  8. “Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.” – Alan Watts

  9. “The real meditation is how you live your life.” – Jon Kabat-Zinn

  10. “Wise men don’t judge – they seek to understand.” – Wei Wu Wei

  11. “Don’t rush anything. When the time right it’ll happen.” – Buddha                                                    

    Best Zen Quotes
    Best Zen Quotes

  12. “Life isn’t as serious as the mind makes it out to be.” – Eckhart Tolle

  13. “Watch what you say, and whatever you say, practice it.” – Soyen Shaku

  14. “In Zen, we don’t find the answers. We lose the questions.” – Zen Saying                                                                     

    zen quotes on life
    zen quotes on life

  15. “One must be deeply aware of the impermanence of the world.” – Dogen

  16. “Trying to define yourself is like trying to bite your own teeth.” – Alan Watts

  17. “Have the fearless attitude of a hero and the loving heart of a child.” – Soyen Shaku

  18. “She who knows life flows, feels no wear or tear, needs no mending or repair.” – Buddha

  19. “Nothing ever exists entirely alone. Everything is in relation to everything else.” – Buddha

  20. “Only when you can be extremely pliable and soft can you be extremely hard and strong.”– Zen Proverb

Best Zen Quotes To Calm Your Mind

Below are a few famous Zen quotes by Buddha, Thích Nhat Hạnh, Lao Tzu, Dalai Lama and more spiritual leaders that will help you, to train your mind so you can stay calm, be at peace, get perspective, and respond appropriately to those stressful situations…

  1. “Let go, or be dragged.” – Zen Proverb

  2. “Smile, breathe and go slowly.” ― Thích Nhat Hạnh                                                                           

    zen quotes on mind
    zen quotes on mind

  3. “Work out your salvation. Do not depend on others.” – Buddha

  4. “Be master of mind rather than mastered by mind.” – Zen Proverb                                                       

    Famous Zen Quotes
    Famous Zen Quotes

  5. “Enlightenment is when a wave realizes it is the ocean.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

  6. “The resistance to the unpleasant situation is the root of suffering.” – Ram Dass

  7. “Happiness will never come to those who fail to appreciate what they already have.” – Buddha

  8. “At the still-point in the center of the circle one can see the infinite in all things.”– Chuang Tzu

  9. “The noble-minded are calm and steady. Little people are forever fussing and fretting.” – Confucius

  10. “When thoughts arise, then do all things arise. When thoughts vanish, then do all things vanish.” – Huang Po

  11. “Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.” ― Dalai Lama

  12. “All true artists, whether they know it or not, create from a place of no-mind, from inner stillness.” – Eckhart Tolle

  13. “An idea that is developed and put into action is more important than an idea that exists only as an idea.” – Buddha

  14. “When we approve of ourselves, rather than always seeking approval from others, we find happiness.” – Unknown

  15. “To accept some idea of truth without experiencing it is like a painting of a cake on paper which you cannot eat.” – Suzuki Roshi

  16. “People don’t realize that now is all there ever is; there is no past or future except as memory or anticipation in your mind.” – Eckhart Tolle

  17. “In the end only three things matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.” – Buddha

  18. “It’s beautiful to be alone. To be alone doesn’t mean to be lonely. It means the mind is not influenced and contaminated by society.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti

  19. “Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts

  20. “Zen is not effort. Effort is tension, effort is work, effort is to achieve something. Zen is not something to achieve. You are already that. Just relax, relax so deeply that you become a revelation to yourself.” – Zen Teachings

Uplifting Zen Quotes For Love, Life, Work

  1. “Be like a tree, let the dead leaves drop.” – Rumi

  2. “Only the hand that erases can write the true thing.” – Meister Eckhart

  3. “Sometimes, simply by sitting, the soul collects wisdom.” –  Zen Proverb        

    zen Buddhism quotes
    zen Buddhism quotes

  4. “If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.” – Buddha

  5. “High understanding comes from not understanding at all.” –  Zen Proverb

  6. “Fear is a natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.” – Prema Chödrön

  7. “What the superior man seeks is in himself; what the small man seeks is in others.” – Confucius

  8. “And when they played they really played. And when they worked they really worked.”– Dr. Seuss

  9. “What day is it?” asked Pooh. “It’s today,” squeaked Piglet. “My favourite day,” said Pooh. – A. A Milne

  10. “Throughout this life, you can never be certain of living long enough to take another breath.” – Huang Po

  11. “Respect life, revere life. There is nothing more holy than life, nothing more divine than life.” ― Unknown

  12. “Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship.” ― Buddha

  13. “If you miss the present moment, you miss your appointment with life. That is very serious!” ― Thich Nhat Hanh

  14. “For things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them.” – Thích Nhat Hanh

  15. “Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order to the one in your mind.” – David G. Allen

  16. “Stop leaving and you will arrive. Stop searching and you will see. Stop running away and you will be found.” – Zen Buddhism

  17. “Have good trust in yourself … not in the One that you think you should be, but in the One that you are.” – Maezumi Roshi

  18. “When you do something, you should burn yourself up completely, like a good bonfire, leaving no trace of yourself.” – Shunryu Suzuki

  19. “It is not impermanence that makes us suffer, what makes s suffer is wanting things to be permanent, when they are not.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

  20. “I gained nothing at all from supreme enlightenment, and for that very reason it is called supreme enlightenment.” – Gautam Buddha

  21. “Zen does not give you anything; it simply takes away all the layers of the onion and then says to you, look, this is you – just pure nothingness.” – Osho

  22. “This dew like life fades away; time speeds swiftly. In this short life of ours, avoid involvement in superfluous things and just study the Way.” ― Dōgen Zenji

  23. “Your life is your practice. Your spiritual practice does not occur someplace other than in your life right now, and your life is nowhere other than where you are.” ― Karen Maezeu Miller

  24. “Old friends pass away, new friends appear. It is just like the days. An old day passes, a new day arrives. The important thing is to make it meaningful: a meaningful friend – or a meaningful day.” ― Dalai Lama

  25. “The more we stay in the dream of who we think we are, the less able we are to connect with what is actually happening in front of us and find some simple, fresh and alive way to respond to the moment. In a lot of ways, the simple way of Zen practice is a revolutionary act, because it alters a structure of what “we think” and allows us to drop into “what is”.” ― Zen Master Bon Soeng

Powerful Zen Quotes To Bring Stillness In Your Life

  1. “Do not be afraid to travel slowly, be afraid to stand still.” – Chinese Proverb

  2. “Mindfulness isn’t difficult, we just need to remember to do it.” – Sharon Salzberg

  3. “Do not follow the idea of others, but learn to listen to the voice within yourself.” ― Dōgen Zenji

  4. “If you are unable to find the truth right where you are, where else do you expect to find it?” – Dogen

  5. “The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.” – Thich Nhat Hahn

  6. “To accept some idea of truth without experiencing it is like a painting of a cake on paper which you cannot eat.” – Suzuki Roshi

  7. “When I feel like dancing, I dance. I don’t care if anyone else is dancing or if everyone else is laughing at me. I dance.” – Rachel Danson

  8. “To follow the path, look to the master, follow the master, walk with the master, see through the master, become the master.” – Zen Proverb

  9. “Upon retiring, sleep as if you had entered your last sleep. Upon awakening, leave your bed behind you instantly as if you had cast away a pair of old shoes.” – Soyen Shaku

  10. “It really boils down to this: that all life is interrelated. We are all caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

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These famous calm quotes are collected from various sources, books, by famous authors, poets, leaders, spiritual gurus, who have always known importance of a calm mind.

Being calm is very important to maintain your mental healthy, inner peace, and happiness in life. With meditation, yoga, and deep breathing techniques you can be successful in staying calm and worry less.

If you like these quotes about recharging yourself, also read our  enjoy your day quotes to deal with all the anxiety and stress you are going through.

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