thich nhat hanh

  • Fear of Silence Paid Member

    I have the impression that many of us are afraid of silence. We’re always taking in something—text, music, radio, television, or thoughts—to occupy the space. If quiet and space are so important for our happiness, why don’t we make more room for them in our lives? One of my longtime students has a partner who is very kind, a good listener, and not overly talkative; but at home her partner always needs to have the radio or TV on, and he likes a newspaper in front of him while he sits and eats his breakfast. More »
  • Good Earth Day Paid Member

    Hello Earth. What can we say to you on a day like today—your day—when the glaciers are melting and the rivers are rising? That we're sorry? We know that you're sick. We know that we've taken advantage of you, that we're responsible for your dangerously high temperatures. Should we apologize to you on your big day? At a moment like this, would it be awkward if we said "Thank you"?On this Earth Day I'm thinking of something that Kurt Vonnegut wrote towards the end of his life. The crucified planet Earth, should it find a voice and a sense of irony, might now well say of our abuse of it, “Forgive them, Father. They know not what they do.” The irony would be that we know what we are doing. When the last living thing has died on account of us, how poetic it would be if Earth could say, in a voice floating up perhaps from the floor of the Grand Canyon, “It is done. People did not like it here.” More »
  • Four Takes on Impermanence Paid Member

    This body, bhikkhus, is perishable, consciousness is of a nature to dissolve, and all objects of clinging are impermanent, suffering and subject to change.-The Buddha Impermanence is chosen as a worthy object of meditation in Buddhism because, although we may understand it intellectually, we mostly do not behave as though we have integrated this awareness. A combination of analysis and concentration on this topic brings the insight to life so that we appreciate the preciousness of every moment of our experience.-The Dalai Lama If we are not empty, we become a block of matter.We cannot breathe, we cannot think.To be empty means to be alive, to breathe in and to breathe out.We cannot be alive if we are not empty.Emptiness is impermanence, it is change.We should not complain about impermanence,because without impermanence, nothing is possible.-Thich Nhat Hanh More »
  • Labor Day Special: The disease of capitalism? Paid Member

    In an August 26 post, I noted 5 recent comments from Thich Nhat Hanh on the occasion of his visit to the UK. One of the quotes refers to "the disease of capitalism" (Thay's words), and I thought perhaps some would object. No one did. One, did, however, find that phrase particularly felicitous. Seedoubleyou writes: Thay’s messages are fantastic, particularly in relation to the poison of capitalism. I remain hopeful that his words stretch beyond Buddhist circles and to the ears that need to hear. In the Guardian today, the question is posed: More »
  • 5 recent quotes from Thich Nhat Hanh in today's Guardian Paid Member

    In the current issue of Tricycle, contributing editor Andrew Cooper recounts his travels with Thich Nhat Hanh, the much beloved Vietnamese teacher, poet, peace advocate and environmentalist. Cooper's view is unique; charged with attending Thay, as he is called, on an early visit to the United States, Cooper offers an up-close-and-personal view of a man who changed—in fact, helped to shape—Buddhism in the West. Today's Guardian features a nice piece on Thay on the occasion of his visit to Nottingham, where he led nearly 1,000 people in walking meditation (above). Here are five outtakes: 1. "The situation the Earth is in today has been created by unmindful production and unmindful consumption. We consume to forget our worries and our anxieties. Tranquilizing ourselves with over-consumption is not the way." More »
  • Buddhist Teachers on Facebook Paid Member

    A 10-second history of the internet: First, there was a Big Bang (millions of individual little websites spewing out randomly into a vast virtual cosmos) followed by a Big Crunch (everybody slamming together onto social networking sites) then evolution (various websites fighting for survival and the top spot in a brutal Darwinian mess). In recent years, Facebook, having all but slain its feebler and shallower rival MySpace, has emerged the victor in this evolutionary struggle and now boasts over over 500,000,000 active users, about one eighth of the entire planet's population. More »