Here's a timely instructional video that'll be useful in Zen Centres throughout the Western world. Trust me, beginners: this scant 5-minute seminar will get you as far as many Zenners do in as many years. (How about this Internet, eh?)
But the very best part is that JP Sears actually is one of those New Age life-coach types I'm always sneering about. This guy makes his living as a spiritual counsellor, ministering to people in pain from an (apparently) areligious-but-like-spiritual perspective. And given the long string of biting YouTube videos he's made lambasting his own schtick, I'll bet he's brilliant. I'd send a friend to him, if she needed help and were of that bent. (The fact that he's based in South Carolina may contribute to his groundedness.)
All of which goes to underscore a central pillar of the Buddha's teaching, one that we Zenners often forget: "If it works, it works." Enlightenment is its own justification. It's a hard pill for some establishment types to swallow, but if you get there by following a master and doing your billy-be-damnedest to be Japanese -- good. If you get there being a sardonic hermit in the woods -- just as good. And if you get there by being a hippy-dippy kale-eating bohemian -- just as good.
We're a results-based religion. Forget that, and you're not practicing Zen.
And if you see my man JP, ask him for me if he thinks he'd've turned out as awesome in California.