December 24, 2012. 118-minute dharma talk given by Thich Nhat Hanh from Upper Hamlet at Plum Village. The sangha is in the 90-day Rains Retreat (Winter Retreat) and this is the special Christmas Eve dharma talk (and the fourteenth dharma talk of the retreat with the theme Are You The Soulmate of the Buddha?)
Begin with a teaching on listening to the chant. Learning to recognize our own suffering and the suffering of the other person. We can then generate compassion. The monastics then chant the name Namo ‘valokiteshvaraya.
The practice of going home is a very deep practice. We need the energy of mindfulness. We don’t need a plane or train ticket to go home. There is a station – Radio NST – (non-stop thinking) and this doesn’t help us arrive home. Walking and breathing allow us to arrive. The more you are mindful and concentratesd the more pleasant. Help you stop the thinking and the worrying. Just walk and heal.
“I have arrived. I am home.” This is the best dharma talk we have in Plum Village. We do not have to force ourselves to breathe or to walk. It can be really pleasant. There is no way home, home is the way. The Buddha taught about the island of self.
Loneliness is an illusion. It is a wrong perception. Every breath and every step can help us see this. The teaching on “going home” is very strong.
Thay explores the living Christ. We reflect of the birth of Jesus into this world as the son of man. Did he exist before this time? What do we mean by birth?
Science and Buddhism. Matter and energy. Nothing is born. Nothing dies. Our true nature is of no birth and no death. This is the ultimate truth.
There is no being, no non-being, only Interbeing. When we celebrate the birth of Christ, we can look deeply into this teaching of no birth and no death.
October 11, 2012. 118-minute dharma talk given by Thich Nhat Hanh from Lower Hamlet at Plum Village. The sangha is enjoying the Autumn Retreat and this is a Day
Teaching of suffering and the transformation of suffering. We don’t speculate on philosophical questions. We don’t only use our intellect. Buddhism is practical. How to handle a painful feeling? A strong emotion?
There is an insight on Interbeing. Non-self. Emptiness. What is true happiness? What is understanding and love? Practical application of the Four Noble Truths. When we are able to see our own suffering, we are better able to see the suffering of others.
Thay shares a few more stories from the time of the Vietnam war in terms of hope and despair. Generating joy and happiness through the exercises on mindful breathing.
August 24, 2012. 100-minute dharma talk given in English, with simultaneous translation into German, with Thich Nhat Hanh. This is the fifth Dharma talk offered by Thay on in the German Retreat, theme of Body and Mind Are One, at the European Institute of Applied Buddhism in Waldbröl, Germany.
Can the body be without the mind? Can the mind be without the body? By looking deeply, we see this is not possible. Without the body, we cannot take care of the mind. And vice versa.
The sixteen exercises on the full awareness of mindful breathing. Teachings on impermanence and nirvana (story of the wave). Three doors of liberation.
August 20, 2012. 103-minute dharma talk given in English, with simultaneous translation into German, with Thich Nhat Hanh. This is the first Dharma talk offered by Thay in the German Retreat at the European Institute of Applied Buddhism in Waldbröl, Germany.
In a talk for the children, Thay talks about how to be fresh, not be angry, and how to love. We can use meditation to be fresh, beautiful, and loving. We can use Pepple meditation.
Listening to the bell to be in touch with our breathing, connect with our ancestors, and release tensions and worries. This can be a very deep practice. Freedom can be attained with mindful breathing and the Buddha has provided an outline for practicing mindful breathing.
August 28, 2012. 130-minute dharma talk given in English, with simultaneous translation into Dutch, with Thich Nhat Hanh. This is a public talk given at World Forum Theatre in The Hague, The Netherlands spoknsored by the Mindful Living Foundation.
Inner peace is possible and mindfulness helps us take care of our body, feelings, and perceptions. There is a practice called mindfulness of suffering. Mindfulness is always mindfulness of something. Our suffering has often been ignored and the energy of mindfulness can help touch our suffering. The chanting of the name of the bodhissatva of compassion and deep listening – Avalokiteshvara. The monastics chant at 28m into recording.
How do we listen to the bell? How do we take care of our body and our feelings? The exercises of mindful breathing as outlined in the sutra in the Full Awareness of Mindful Breathing. A short teaching on the noble truths and Right View.
The talk concludes with a song from Sr. Chan Khong.
August 26, 2012. 137-minute dharma talk given in English, with simultaneous translation into German, with Thich Nhat Hanh. This is a Day of Mindfulness at the European Institute of Applied Buddhism in Waldbröl, Germany.
A day of mindfulness is a day of practice so that we can live each moment of our life very deeply. Anyone can generate the energy of mindfulness, bringing our mind home to our body. There are many wonders of life. And mindfulness is always mindfulness of something – drinking your tea. This can bring freedom and joy and happiness.
A couple of sweet moments when a local church bell is ringing and then a rain downpour. Every moment can be a pleasant moment. A miracle happens when you breathe in mindfully.
On a day of mindfulness we have time to sit and breathe together. We can stop our thinking every time we hear the sound of the bell. Enjoying the here and the now is the address for the pure land of the Buddha. Instruction on listening to the bell. Walking meditation and the country of the present moment. Instruction on walking meditation. This is followed by true communion and eating meditation.
Mindful listening and mindfulness of suffering. Many of the things we do in life are to cover up out suffering. How we help each other to suffer less? The chant of Avalokiteshvara can help touch suffering with mindfulness. When we listen to the chant, we should sit and listen and try to stop our thinking. Allow our body to relax. Chant begins at 1:20m into recording and the talk resumes again at 1:41m.
If a relationship had become difficult, there is always a way to transform it. In order to heal a relationship, you must heal yourself. We have Sutra on the Full Awareness of Breathing to help us heal ourselves.
July 14, 2012. 111-minute recording given at Upper Hamlet, Plum Village by Thich Nhat Hanh. This is the sixth dharma talk of the Summer Opening and the beginning of the second week. We begin with instructions on listening to the chant, followed by listening to the name Avaloketeshvara. The main talk begins about 40-minutes into the recording.
The third exercise of mindful breathing is about our body. Getting in touch with your body. True life is only possible with concentration and mindfulness. We learn to stop thinking so we can feel. The secret of meditation is to bring the mind in touch with the body. In the here and the now.
Mindfulness is the first energy. This bring concentration. Followed by insight. Three kinds of energies. They are within. Breathing in, I get the insight that I am alive. There are many insights like this.
When we each practice like this, we develop a collective energy and we can change the world. Just these three kinds of energy.
The second exercise is to follow your in breath all the way through. And the first is to be with your breath.
At 1:25 into the recording, Thay responds to a few questions on the topic of fear submitted by Self Magazine. How do you make good use of the energy of fear to produce good things?
Finally, tips on how to participate in a peace walk.
June 7, 2012. 99-minute dharma talk by Thich Nhat Hanh from New Hamlet in Plum Village during the 21-Day Retreat with the theme The Science of the Buddha. The talk is given in English and this is the fifth dharma talk (of 15).
This is an excellent session of questions and answers.
What is the difference between feelings and mental formations?
Is euthanasia okay? Is it Right Action? Can we relieve physical Pain?
How do I practice with the teaching of inferiority and equality complexes?
How can we support out dharma teacher when s/he is not so skillful?
How do I practice with the last four exercises from the sutra on the full awareness of breathing?
Question on consciousness and impermanence.
What happens to the mind after the body dies?
How can you take refuge in the sangha if you don’t trust? How can we build trust?
Severe mental illness, such as bipolar, requires medicine to balance emotion. Can you clarify this as it relates to the practice?
June 6, 2012. 114-minute dharma talk by Thich Nhat Hanh from Upper Hamlet in Plum Village during the 21-Day Retreat with the theme The Science of the Buddha. The talk is given in English and this is the fourth dharma talk (of 15).
We begin with chanting followed by the main talk about 10-minutes into the recording.
June 3, 2012. 103-minute dharma talk by Thich Nhat Hanh from Lower Hamlet in Plum Village during the 21-Day Retreat with the theme The Science of the Buddha. The talk is given in English and this is the second dharma talk (of 15).
Sutra on the Full Awareness of Breathing – exercises 5-8