Chop Wood Carry Water

May 03, 2022


"Before enlightenment, chop wood carry water, after enlightenment, chop wood carry water" zen proverb.

This video reveals the secrets of chop wood carry water. What does it mean to be present? We have the great opportunity to learn this when doing mundane tasks that are necessary in life. Many of us don't love doing mundane things and even resent doing them. To use them as a tool toward stilling the mind and accumulating higher energies requires practice .

It does not mean focusing the mind on the task alone but learning expanded awareness. Maintaining presence demands certain things of us and it is easiest to learn it through mundane tasks.

The Awareness School offers retreats to practice this in a concrete way. One develops skills that can then be brought home and applied in every day life..

Once one has acquired freedom, it is necessary to return to ordinary life. The ego then is longer there striving to accomplish something...even enlightenment. One is able to "be" while chopping wood and carrying water, instead of doing. 

For more information on spiritual retreats and these practices, visit

Molly Knight Forde is the founder of the Awareness School and author of Be Present: Reflections Along The Way.

If you are interested in meditation and practices of presence consider taking the Practical Awareness 8-Week Course offered twice a year. For information or current registration, visit:

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