Thich Nhat Hanh

cameo_hanhThich Nhat Hanh (pronounced Tick-Naught-Han) is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk. During the war in Vietnam, he worked tirelessly for reconciliation between North and South Vietnam. His lifelong efforts to generate peace moved Martin Luther King, Jr. to nominate him for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1967. He lives in exile in a small community in France where he teaches, writes, gardens and works to help refugees worldwide. He has conducted many mindfulness retreats in Europe and North America helping veterans, children, environmentalists, psychotherapists, artists and many thousands of individuals seeking peace in their hearts and in their world. Despite the fact that he is in his eightieth year, Thich Nhat Hanh’s strength and impact as a global spiritual guide continue to grow. He has written more than eighty books of prose, poetry and prayers. Most of his works have been geared toward the Buddhist reader, yet his teachings appeal to a wide audience. His writing, which speaks to the individual’s desire for wholeness and inner calm, is natural, graceful and easily accessible.


“Peace is not simply the absence of violence; it is the cultivation of understanding, insight and compassion.”

“Aware of the suffering caused by the destruction of life, I vow to cultivate compassion and learn ways to protect lives of people, animals, plants, and minerals. I am determined not to kill, not to let others kill, and not to condone any killing in the world, in my thinking, and in my way of life.”

“Every day we do things, we are things that have to do with peace. If we are aware of our life . . . our way of looking at things, we will know how to make peace right in the moment.”

“Because of your smile, you make life more beautiful.”

“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.”

“Harm no person, animal, plant or mineral.”

“We have more possibilities available in each moment than we realize.”

“There is no enlightenment outside of daily life.”

“We really have to understand the person we want to love. If our love is only a will to possess, it is not love. If we only think of ourselves, if we know only our own needs and ignore the needs of the other person, we cannot love.”


June 2006 Netribution (UK) interview: