Thich Nhất Hanh

Thich Nhất
Hanh
1926

Vietnamese Peace Activist, Zen Buddhist Monk, Teacher, Community Leader, Author, Chair of Vietnamese Buddhist Peace Delegation to the Paris Peace Talks, Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize, Author of more than 100 books

Author Quotes

We who have touched war have a duty to bring the truth about war to those who have not had a direct experience of it. We are the light at the tip of the candle. It is really hot, but it has the power of shining and illuminating. If we practice mindfulness, we will know how to look deeply into the nature of war and, with our insight, wake people up so that together we can avoid repeating the same horrors again and again.

Whenever anger comes up, take out a mirror and look at yourself. When you are angry, you are not very beautiful.

You who are journalists, writers, citizens, you have the right and duty to say to those you have elected that they must practice mindfulness, calm and deep listening, and loving speech. This is universal thing, taught by all religions.

Enlightenment is always there. Small enlightenment will bring great enlightenment. If you breathe in and are aware that you are alive, that you can touch the miracle of being alive, then that is a kind of enlightenment. Many people are alive but don't touch the miracle of being alive.

Guarding knowledge is not a good way to understand. Understanding means to throw away your knowledge.

I would not look upon anger as something foreign to me that I have to fight. I have to deal with my anger with care, with love, with tenderness, with nonviolence.

If you look deeply into the palm of your hand, you will see your parents and all generations of your ancestors. All of them are alive in this moment. Each is present in your body. You are the continuation of each of these people.

In true love, you attain freedom.

Live in such a way that you embody true peace, that you can be peace in every moment of your daily life. It is possible for everyone to generate the energy of peace in every step.

Nonviolent action, born of the awareness of suffering and nurtured by love, is the most effective way to confront adversity.

People deal too much with the negative, with what is wrong. Why not try and see positive things, to just touch those things and make them bloom?

Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.

The miracle is not to walk on water. The miracle is to walk on the green earth in the present moment, to appreciate the peace and beauty that are available now.

The true miracle is not walking on water or walking in air, but simply walking on this earth.

To consume in order to cover up our suffering does not work. We need a spiritual practice to go deep into our suffering.

We all have the seeds of love in us. We can develop this wonderful source of energy, nurturing the unconditional love that does not expect anything in return.

When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over. He does not need punishment; he needs help. That's the message he is sending.

Wherever we are we have the capacity to enjoy the sunshine, the presence of each other and the wonder of our breathing.

Your breathing should flow gracefully, like a river, like a watersnake crossing the water, and not like a chain of rugged mountains or the gallop of a horse. To master our breath is to be in control of our bodies and minds. Each time we find ourselves dispersed and find it difficult to gain control of ourselves by different means, the method of watching the breath should always be used.

Every breath we take, every step we make, can be filled with peace, joy, and serenity. We need only to be awake, alive in the present moment.

Happiness does not come from consumption of things.

If a child smiles, if an adult smiles, that is very important. If in our daily lives we can smile, if we can be peaceful and happy, not only we, but everyone will profit from it. If we really know how to live, what better way to start the day than with a smile? Our smile affirms our awareness and determination to live in peace and joy. The source of a true smile is an awakened mind.

If you love someone but rarely make yourself available to him or her; that is not true love.

It is best if we do not listen to or look at the person whom we consider to be the cause of our anger. Like a fireman, we have to pour water on the blaze first and not waste time looking for the one who set the house on fire. Breathing in, I know that I am angry. Breathing out, I know that I must put all my energy into caring for my anger. So we avoid thinking about the other person, and we refrain from doing or saying anything as long as our anger persists. If we put all our mind into observing our anger, we will avoid doing any damage that we may regret later.

Live your daily life in a way that you never lose yourself. When you are carried away with your worries, fears, cravings, anger, and desire, you run away from yourself and you lose yourself. The practice is always to go back to oneself. You have a wonderful vehicle. And you don't have to buy any gasoline. Mindful breathing and mindful walking are wonderful ways to go back to oneself.

Author Picture
First Name
Thich Nhất
Last Name
Hanh
Birth Date
1926
Bio

Vietnamese Peace Activist, Zen Buddhist Monk, Teacher, Community Leader, Author, Chair of Vietnamese Buddhist Peace Delegation to the Paris Peace Talks, Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize, Author of more than 100 books