Questions and Answers

This is a 117-minute session of questions and answers with Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh in Hanoi during the “Engaged Buddhism in the 21st Century” retreat. The date is May 10, 2008 and the questions and answers are offered in English. 

Questions

  1. How would applied Buddhism look to the healthcare professional? (3:25)
  2. How do we deal with guilt? (8:07)
  3. My father cares about no-one and has no interest in life. He also has lots of anger. How can I help him? (17:50)
  4. A question on mindfulness of joy. Can you explain a little more about joy as it relates too attachment to the joy? (23:30)
  5. Experiencing suffering in not being able to conceive a child. (32:30)
  6. A question about medication and depression. In reference to what Thay taught in a previous talk. Sometimes there is also a physiological aspect to depression. Concern that Thay’s teaching may be misunderstood. Can you clarify? (41:24)
  7. Why does life exist? Why are we here? (56:33)
  8. As a young person, how can I use the practice and be able to share with other young people? Is there some more creative language that might speak more to young people? (1:00:00)
  9. How do we forgive someone whom we have never known intimately and have no way of communicating? For the suffering they have caused. (1:08:15)
  10. Having recently traveled in Laos and meeting many people impacted by the war and areas where unexploded ordinance remains. This caused anger and sadness to arise in me. Is this karma? Is this a time when we can be righteously angry? (1:16:03)
  11. There are young people who grow-up in a loving and supportive environment, but when they travel for university or work, they will face really negative pressure. This is a challenge. We should vaccinate our mind. Should we give children challenges so they are better prepared? (1:25:50)
  12. What is your intention with offering the Five Mindfulness Trainings? (1:35:30)
  13. Question about the 5th Mindfulness Training. This training watered by feeling of fear based on my upbringing as a Catholic. (1:45:30)
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Children and their Experience of Divorce

July 11, 2013. 82-minute dharma talk given by Thich Nhat Hanh from Lower Hamlet in Plum Village during the 2013 Summer Opening. This is the third talk of the summer and it is a session of questions and answers.

Children

  1. Why does the world exist?
  2. I don’t understand about love because my parents got divorced and they yelled at each other.
  3. What does God look like to you?
  4. How long are you/I going to live?

Teens and Adults

  1. When parents get divorced, why do they fight in front of the children and also say they love the children?
  2. I have a friend who is always unkind to me and then later he is concerned about me. Why does he do that?
  3. How can have stillness and joy?
  4. How can transform the guilt inside for my parents getting divorced?
  5. I don’t know how to deal with my anger, especially when I am angry. What can I do?
  6. How do I practice with my parents/grandparents when I haven’t met or seen him?
  7. A friend is on drugs. How can I deal with being overwhelmed by this person?

French Television

  1. What is the meaning of prayer in Buddhism?
  2. What are the different kinds of prayer in Buddhism?
  3. What can prayer offer to humanity?

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Questions and Answers – German Retreat

June 15, 2013. 85-minute dharma talk given by Thich Nhat Hanh from the European Institute of Applied Buddhism in Waldbrol, Germany. The talk is given in English with consecutive translation into German. This is the fourth dharma talk, a session of questions and answers, of the German Retreat on the theme Are You Sure?

Questions

  1. Who are we if we are not our feelings, body, perceptions, or consciousness? What is left?
  2. Is it okay to suffer and feel for my son who was paralyzed in an accident?
  3. What makes a man a man and what makes a woman a woman? Is it important to know the distinction? What should we teach our children?
  4. If there is no thinker then how can there be a doer?
  5. How do work with feelings of pain, guilt, and shame?
  6. I want to reconcile, how can I call my father if he’s dead?
  7. How can you help someone who is suffering from violent emotions, especially if they can’t see it themselves?

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