Z is for Moments of Zen

I believe that moments of Zen are not exclusive to Buddhists.  According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Zen is the Japanese form of Buddhism that aims at enlightenment by direct intuition through meditation.  Hence, centuries ago Zen Buddhist priests designed their austere sand and rock garden configurations to enhance meditation and as an appreciation of beauty in simplicity.

NOLA - Summer 2015
iPhone 4 Photograph
Our Beautiful World #128 - Calm
Ramona's Inspire Me Monday #209
Denise & Roger's ABC Wednesday - Z is for Moments of Zen
It is my understanding that Zen is a sensory experience that allows a person to be fully aware of the "here and now."  It is about being so totally focused introspectively, that time and space are irrelevant.  It is about filling the present with profound joy, peace and clarity, so that it may become a peak experience.

2 Corinthians 5:17 - The old has gone; the new is here!
CaranD'Ache Watersoluble Wax Pastels; Cray-Pas Oil Pastels; Gelli Prints; Hand Carved stamps; and More
Alexandra's Sunday Sketches
The Mixed Media Challenge #20 Time Flies
Julia's What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday - #344
Kristin & Eva's Paint Party Friday - Week 44 Year 5
Kim Dellow's Show Your Face
I believe there are other ways to achieve moments of Zen.  Quality time spent with loved ones, recreational reading/writing, and quiet nature trail walks are just a few examples.  Even in the hustle and bustle of daily life, I have achieved moments of Zen when looking through the eye of my camera lens or sketching in public areas.

Neighborhood Christmas Celebration
Tim Holtz Artful Dwellings, Mini Openings, & Tiny Shapes Dies; Cardboard & Paper Scraps; Plaid Royal Coat; Hand Illustrations; Words&Crafts Word Stamp Kit; Martha Stewart Sequins; Fiskars 1/16" Hole-Punch; and wire.
Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge - Winter Wonderland
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - Party
Karen's Word Art Wednesday #217
As a Christian, I believe that a major moment of Zen is Epiphany, which is observed on January 6th, and commemorates the coming of the Magi as the first manifestation of Christ to the gentiles.  I can only imagine the feeling of awe the Magi experienced when realizing they were in the presence of the King of Kings.  Wow!

Anyway, thank you for stopping by.  I also want to take this opportunity to thank all my followers, as well as everyone who took the time to leave a thoughtful comment during 2015.  May 2016 be filled with moments of Zen for everyone around the world!


Christine said…
Lovely pieces Arnoldo, and Happy New Year!
Rachel said…
gorgeous pieces arnoldo. i love the art journal spread and especially that it seems like you drew yourself. beautiful. have a wonderful three kings day.
Thank you so much for playing with the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge! Happy New Year!

Kirsty Vittetoe said…
Awesome, wishing you a wonderful new year too!
I love the concept of Zen and as a Christian I love the mixture you added to your pieces.Beautiful art Arnoldo.
Happy New Year.
Wow! You really outdid yourself with these pieces! It's always so enlightening and refreshing to see what you've been up to and I enjoy your words as much as I enjoy your art. You are so talented in both areas! I really liked your journal art and how thoughtful it is. It is so expressive and makes me pensive and reflective about what I'd like to focus on for 2016. And your neighborhood art piece is wonderful in every way! I adore how each building/scene is so unique and lovely. Together, they really have a powerful impact! Excellent work here and thanks for supporting our Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenges. I wish you many hours of happy crafting in 2016!
Valerie-Jael said…
Beautiful work as always Arnoldo. Happy New Year to you an yours, with many zen moments to guide you through. Regards, Valerie
stefanie stark said…
It is such a pleasure to read your text about moments of Zen. Yesterday I had to sit on my sofa for a while with a hot water bottle in my painful back and couldn't do anything else. So I closed my eyes and suddenly I felt this moment of Zen inside as you have described it here. I love your artwork and I totally fell in love with the little houses you made. They are gorgeous! A happy and healthy new year to you and your family!
Hi Arnoldo, hope you had a lovely Christmas and it will be an even better New Year naturally with lots of crafty moments too my friend. Angela xXx
Jackie PN said…
Arnoldo, This is my first visit to your blog, and I am happy to have come!
Such a lovely post filled with gratefulness and love as well as beautiful artwork ,both-painted and photographed!
Thank you so much for sharing and a very big welcome to our Google Community!
Lovely post - and I'm in agreement that zen moments can come to anyone, especially those who walk in the here and now through art, meditation, and presence. Many thanks for this post!
Ros Crawford said…
Happy New Year!! Wonderful photos and a lovely post! So glad you could share with us at OBW!!
Helen said…
Fantastic artwork and I loved reading about your thoughts on Zen. I hadn't really thought about it before, but I do agree that the recreational things we do can also be zen like.

Happy SS x
Lisabella Russo said…
What lovely thoughts and such beautiful art! It's always so wonderful to see your art and read your words! Happy new year to you and your family!
What a lovely, well written post, Arnoldo. I really enjoyed reading your thoughts and perspective on zen and how we can tie it in to our faith. Beautiful journal page and Christmas houses. Happy 2016!
carol l mckenna said…
Wonderful post on Zen which I agree with so much ~ Lovely creations here ~always a delight to see and feel the Zen alive and working!

Happy Week to you, ^_^
Unknown said…
What a wonderful choise for this weeks letter...and to end the alphabet with too...and as usual, we agree again ;-)

Stay blessed in Zen as much as you can.

Have a nice abc-day / -week
♫ M e l ☺ d y ♫ <abc-e-team)
Melissa Bove said…
Amazing creations Arnoldo! You are a true artist!!

Happy New Year!

Thank you very much for joining us this week at the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge Blog!

Beverley Baird said…
A lovely post - great description of zen. Love your art as well.
Indrani said…
I agree with your interpretation of the word Zen.
The art work is fantabulous!
Happy new year to you and all your loved ones.
Happy ABCW! :)
Leslie: said…
Thanks for dropping by with your lovely comment, Arnoldo. I find my "Zen" by writing and the ABCW site encourages me to really dig deep within myself. I'm at peace now that I am setting out on another new path of singledom, knowing that I can and will succeed on my own. No more zags for me - only zigging! Love your perspective on "zen" and when I'm out for a walk with my precious Tegan, I take the time to smell the roses - well, the trees, the air, etc. It's a wonderful feeling to bond with nature. Hope you and your family had a wonderful and blessed Christmas season. I will remember the magi tomorrow!

abcw team
mandysea said…
I feel a sense of peace just reading your post... its a poignant reminder.... the photo of the garden is very beautiful. Art journal page shows an expressive soul and message. Wonderful art work.. and your little Christmas houses... just gorgeous! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, photo and artwork with Our Beautiful World too.
Robyn Oliver said…
Hi Arnoldo, I enjoyed reading your post, finding ones inner peace is vital for ones happiness. Have a great 2016 RobynO#21
Shoshi said…
I love what you wrote about Zen, Arnoldo. As a Christian myself, too, I do not find any conflict between Zen and my Christian faith - we can "borrow" from other traditions within limits, and I believe that the Zen approach of being entirely in the present moment is like being the little child we have to become in order to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Children have a wonderful knack of enjoying the present moment, not sullied by regret, or worry for the future. It's all about trust, and we can have a true "Zen" moment, just resting in the presence of God and enjoying Him and His love.

Zentangle drawing is a wonderful way to get "in the zone" and enjoy putting pen to paper in a simple, repetitive way that dispells the stress of so much of modern life. I am so glad you like my efforts! I love to immerse myself in this sort of art. Since having cancer, I am much more conscious of the preciousness of every moment and the desire to immerse myself in it and enjoy it.

Thank you for your lovely comment. My mojo is returning with baby steps and isn't in full flood yet but I live in hope! The tidying in my studio is ongoing - lots more to do before I feel back in control in that space. So many nice things to look forward to doing in the coming year.

Wishing you a very happy New Year and all God's blessings, and happy WOYWW,
I think you are correct!
CraftygasheadZo said…
Such a great post! Take care Zo xx 42
Barb said…
Very beautiful work Arnoldo and I enjoyed reading your post. Wishing you a happy and healthy 2016. Barbx #28
Bubbles said…
I love your artwork - it has a serene feel to it and, as one who looks upon it, I feel quite peaceful. Thank you so much for sharing.
Have a wonderful Wednesday and the rest of the week,
Bubbles #47
Hello, my friend! This is absolutely WONDERFUL. What a lovely little village. Thanks SO MUCH for sharing your talents with us, Arnoldo. I am grateful to have you share your art in our challenges. It means the world to me. Have a blessed week, and please join us again soon. I hope your whole family is doing well.
Word Art Wednesday
Sharon Madson said…
Well said! I love your paste of "everything is new". Happy New Year! #58
Anonymous said…
I already started worrying about you, but relieved when reading the last two paragraphs! A great explanation where we in art have to deal with constantly. Still a happy New Year to you, filled with art and pleasant surprises:)
Ginny Maxam said…
HAppy New Year Arnoldo! I love your article on Zen and even more your Art about the New is here, It truly is- not just an ideal but a tangible Now! Your art work and heart for God are always a light house! Thank you for sharing you thoughts and gifts with us at Word Art Wednesday! Ginny M, DY WAW
I had planned to visit sooner, but soon after I linked to Julia, my electricity went off. It came back on a short time ago, so now I'm trying to catch up with everyone.

I was in awe of the NOLA photo, but really loved the Magi. That was fabulous mixed media. Happy WOYWW on Thursday from #1.
Su-sieee! Mac said…
Finding clarity and centeredness is how I think of zen and prayer. It's also taking a step forward with faith, not worried of what was, is, or what will be. You surely got me thinking, Arnoldo. Happy New Year!
The View from the Top of the Ladder
Anonymous said…
Valerie-Jael said…
Happy PPF, regards, Valerie
Dea Lenihan said…
Nice to meet you. I am new in the community and and glad to have found such a nice blog. :)
sirkkis said…
Impressive and beautiful art, Arnold.
Wishing you blessings and happy New Year xx
Fantastic art Arnoldo! Happy blessed New Year!
I like your post today. Like you, I think you don't have to be a Buddhist to get the idea of zen. I think we all can be in the moment so completely. You put it much better into words than I ever could. Beautiful pieces today also! Have a great weekend.
JKW said…
Interesting thoughts and beautiful art. Happy New Year and Blessings, Janet PPF
EG CameraGirl said…
I enjoyed reading your thoughts on Zen, much to ponder in your words.
Linda Kunsman said…
Well said regarding zen Arnoldo, and I feel the same as you do about it. Your illustration is so beautiful as is your Christmas neighborhood! Happy new year and many blessings to you and yours.
sheila 77 said…
I felt more peaceful just reading your post about Zen, thanks.
Superb painting with your pastels and I loved to see the line of colourful oil pastels next to it.
And I seriously love your 3D piece at the end, such joyful art.
Happy New Year, Arnoldo.
DVArtist said…
A truly beautiful expression of Zen. I love how you bring it all together. Happy New Year.
Giggles said…
Lovely artwork. There is no doubt we achieve zen moments every single time we are creating anything...be it a cookie, music, or artwork. For me it's the spirit moving through me!! Beautiful heartfelt post! Bless you and your kind heart!

Hugs Giggles
Julie Lee said…
Beautiful art work! I love the spirituality of all that you create. I understand totally how we can experience Zen through the natural world. How important that we take seriously our stewardship of this planet. xx
Jo said…
Beautiful post! Love the Neighborhood piece. Wishing you joy and peace this new year and always.
Yes, I can only imagine the feeling of awe the Magi experienced when they first laid eyes upon baby Jesus! I loved reading your post and would like to wish you many moments of Zen in 2016! I also want to thank you for visiting my blog this past year. I am so happy that I came upon yours through "Our Beautiful World." Your photography, works of art, and your writing have enlightened me! Thank you!
Faye said…
Thanks for your ideas on Zen. As a Christian I have always avoided anything that looked Zen-ish. But your explanation does make sense. Your paintings as always are inspiring.
Neesie said…
Firstly Happy New Year to you Arnoldo,
I found your words and artwork both fascinating and beautiful.
I try to remember to keep in the here and now as much as possible.
Have a wonderful weekend and Happy PPF to you
Lorraine said…
Beautiful post. Your artwork is so wonderful. I love the tryptch are project.
A lovely post about finding Zen in life and beautiful art work.

Gloria j Zucaro said…
I always enjoy your commentary as well as your artwork, Romero. Yes, being in the moment and not in the future or the past is not always easy, but as you say there are times when we are there and it is restful.
Cheryl Boglioli said…
Yes!! Love how you find your Zen! We have to learn to live in the moment. All your artwork is heartfelt and gorgeous. Thanks for playing with the MMMC.
sandy said…
Nice post and I really love your art. Just the word "Zen" always brings me to the present moment and at least anchors me there for a bit. I would like to always live my life with moment to moment awareness and gratitude.