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"Za" is Japanese for "sitting." "Zen" is from the Chinese word "ch'an," which is from the Sanskrit "dhyana," which refers to a state of deep absorption in meditation. "Zazen," then, means "sitting in absorption," and it is the name of Zen Buddhist meditation practice.

There are two principal forms of zazen. The Soto school of Zen practices "shikantaza," or "just sitting." The Rinzai school practices koan study.

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