The Resurrection and The Stranger


Today is Easter Sunday and it is a regular day of mindfulness in Plum Village. This talk is from the Lower Hamlet and is dated Sunday, April 20, 2014. The talk is in English. We begin with two chants from the monastics.

Mindfulness practice of the sequoia tree, the sky. Thay talks about Albert Camus’ book called The Stranger. Here too the prisoner talks about truly seeing the sky. This is awakening. Camus called this a moment of consciousness. Many people are living as if we are dead. The blue sky is a wonder of life. Awakening. Can we wake up?

Mindful breathing. Resurrection. From forgetfulness to mindfulness. The miracle of the resurrection. This is not dogma. When we wake up then we can get in touch with the wonders of life. Joy and happiness are possible. How? Waking up to our suffering. Jesus was aware of his suffering and the role of suffering. In Plum Village, we say this bread is the body of the cosmos. Similar to the breaking bread by Jesus. To wake up is to see no birth and no death. It is not because of birth or death that Jesus exists. The same is with mindfulness.

Birth and death. This is our true nature and highest awakening. And Nirvana is the same. We can go back to ourselves and touch our true nature. If we have time to look deeply, we can see the connection between suffering and happiness. Jesus himself realized the role of suffering. As a practitioner of mindfulness we should know how to handle our suffering. Most of us are afraid of suffering. Through the energy of mindfulness, concentration, and insight we can be strong enough to touch and embrace our suffering. When we can do it for ourselves, we can help people around us do it as well. Joy and happiness are possible and transcend anxiety and fear. We don’t need to be afraid of suffering.

If you understand the art of suffering, then you understand the art of happiness. If you understand the art of happiness, then you understand the art of suffering.

By Chan Niem Hy

Dharma Teacher.


  1. On the subject of the Resurrection: Is the resurrection of purely the mind and consciousness? If its truly for sound mind, body, and the spirit; then is it true that consciousness awakening is not enough? Is bodily awakening not enough? Is spiritual awakening not enough? What is enough, enlightenment?

  2. @michael rogers ….i think all answers are in this talk if you listen carefully…happy resurrection..

  3. Thank you for your response. May I call you Maria? And thank you for wishing me a, happy resurrection. But I must say my questions were rhetorical. I have listened to his speech in the recording above and I have read of his books. One I do like is the art of communication. Have you read it?
    What I am asking you now, is why is he relating Jesus’ struggles of life and the suffering that He went through because of our forgetfulness of God? Or, our, missing of the mark; which is sin?

  4. Hi Michael, thak you for your answer
    I don’t know the book about communication, but i have been listening many many of His Dharma Talk.
    I am christian and i am buddhist so i know what it means to struggle with it ..
    if you have strong faith in Jesus as tought by your christian tradition you should also have deep joy and peace in yourself and you don’t need buddhism nor Thich Nhat Hanh teachings.
    But if don’t have strong faith then you need a lot of praying or mindfulness….according to my experience they are not different but mindfulness can lift the spirit even without faith and that makes it more useful for our society….
    I know i didn’t answer your theological questions sorry for that…i don’t have answers…but i finally came to conclusion that what it really matter is having love and comassion in my hearts regardless to whatever religion i belong ….
    Happy continuation of resurrection 🙂

  5. Maria, you did not answer my questions in this discussion. Therefore you are not continuing the conversing of understanding what is true.
    In which, we all know there is value in truth, which is of pure common sense of today.
    What is true is C.R.E.A.M, cash rules everything around me, by that I mean, no matter what you say……even the BUDDHISTS!! believe this; either we retreat into nature; like Buddha did; due to rejecting all the religions of the earth, or, other gods, or a man, but that man will either lead you astray or attempt to control another man or woman or child or you by creating religions out of everything or the cosmos or the universe or a sequoia tree, or the blue sky, just like Thich Nhat Hanh and Buddha, just to use The Power of The King’s resurrection and to take His great work and tell us its just a religious fact, or, something of the theological. That’s just an easier way of saying everything is alright if we are mindful because life is good and were gonna die You are a follower who doesn’t even know your masters You are being lead by the blind. I know about it but you don’t. I even read his book but you didn’t. The Art of communication. First chapter is Essential Food.

    If you didn’t know well now you know. May Jesus come into your life and bring life and may you have it more abundantly because of Him, not mindfulness or consciousness. You need to do an awakening ceremony or something because its not working.

  6. And you edited your first response saying you were a Christian and a Buddhists. Well, hopefully Catholism will work for you because Buddhism isn’t. Sounds to me your just doing what someone else tells you because you’re too lazy or scared to find out the truth. Or you’re just being mindful of the cosmos as the article says, just like it says were made of the cosmos. Which is what I was pretty sure I understood very well what it I saying. And you don’t, obviously said by yourself.

  7. Well, you should read my comments fully and not pick them apart and be a judger. The whole reason for me replying to this discussion is for one reason. Do not use Jesus as a reference by comparing what He has done to mindfulness or the stars and the sky and sequoia trees. Jesus was loving, compassionate, and very very mindful of how people are, we put Him to the cross. Our race as human beings. Not black. Not white. Not European or African. Not buddhists and not Christians. But as the human race. And He died to pay for my sins so that you and I could have life. That’s what this was all about. You and just decided to respond and I responded to what you and her are saying. I love you just the same as the first responder. I’m not a judger because we as people have judges in the court rooms and in the court of public opinion. But the true Judge is the one that can take your life and mine. So why would I judge? Just standing up for the truth my friend.

    Just to make sure you understand, this is merely a discussion to me. Let us discuss what is true. Thank you for your addition my friend because it is much need as well as mine and the first responder.

  8. Mindfulness is a word that few understand because it requires mastery to fully appreciate it. Every thought is the most simple and first act of creation, like a pencil sketching of reality, it can be changed but whatever is sketched can also be created if all the parts of the creation fit within the structure of reality by self and all other creators. To feel and feed that pencil sketch thought is to make a blueprint and the Universe or God or Master creator without judgment will construct according to your blueprint. Repeated thoughts create stronger feelings and faster and more powerful creations therefore to be mindful is to consciously be aware of one’s individual creative power and to consciously create according to your mindfulness. To open to the great door of infinity and eternity is to set apart all desire and create according to God or Universe directed creations only, to be in flow with evolution and enlightenment of all people creators.

    Being mindful requires that one knows and understands each and every thought and has the power to alter them for increased joy etc. Jesus a living master creator perfectly aware of every single thought and feeling from birth stands apart because he had no karma, no baggage to work through to purify his thoughts and feelings. And in so being, Jesus created the crucifixion and all his life and ministry in perfect peace and joy. Jesus was born knowing and joyfully accepted his chosen vocation. He is the supreme example of mindfulness since he had the power to stop it all from becoming a reality but chose to be a sacrifice rather than think and feel as he was entitled to feel, a King. A King who is born knowing and willingly lays down his life to slaves is the greatest example of pure love, faith and truth. At that time in human evolution and consciousness that was what the people needed, sought and created and he filled in that open space willingly.

    Today the people do not need a lamb to the slaughter as those people did. We have evolved beyond human sacrifice and are learning to create a new. The lamb of yesterday will be the King or Queen of today because the people of this world and for a long time have been creating it. Find mindfulness and you will be on the path to finding self and your path to freedom.

  9. Dear friend,
    Peace on Earth
    and Good will to all Men and Women 

    Peace in oneself
    peace in the World

    I am sorry, please forgive me, thank you, I love you <3


  10. Dear Michael, I want to share with you a wonderful video…Father Tadej was a Orthodox elder monk, i love him , He was what I call a Saint and he remindes me so much of Ven.Thich Nhat Han
    Father Tadej 1/6:

  11. MICHAEL , it is important to have a personal truth. Yours may be different than mine. For you, coming home may mean something different than it is for me. Jesus did know suffering, he knew joy as well. Buddha knew this as well. That is a truth we may share. I choose to believe that we must know suffering to know Joy. I don”t think you understand more just because you read That”s book. How many have read the Bible and still do not understand what Jesus taught us.
    I say defend you truth to yourself. Live your truth to help others.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.