Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Wisdom for cooling the flames...

Often when I get discouraged I seek the calming words of a wise soul to control my emotions and understand the pain. This book has been a tremendous help in that area:

Pops let me borrow it a while back, and I keep flipping it open every now and then just to read a couple chapters over again. You can pick it up anywhere, start at any section, and get something useful and encouraging out of it. It is all about being mindful of what we are doing at all times, whether eating, walking, speaking, etc. It deals specifically with becoming aware (mindful) of our anger and the way we interact with it and others. He doesn't feel it is healthy to ignore or bottle up our anger, on the contrary, he wants us to love our anger, and nurture it as if it were our baby. Once we understand where it comes from, only then can we begin to calm it in ourselves and others. I love the metaphor he uses about watering the positive seeds and starving the negative seeds. It makes so much sense, especially in terms of a relationship. We must encourage the positive behavior, and find a way to turn arguments and negative energy around. By doing so the flower (and the relationship) grows healthy and beautiful.

Learn more about the fascinating life of Thich Nhat Hanh by clicking the picture below.

Here is his home:


  1. Yeah, he is an amazing teacher. I was close to joining Plum Village at one point in my life. The plane ticket was burning a hole in my jeans but the universe had other plans for me. My personal favorite of his is The Heart Of The Buddha's Teachings. I keep it close by at all times. He has an amazing grasp on language that helps to transmit his ideas in a beautiful way.

  2. Beautiful! I imagine Plum Village would be an incredible journey full of awakenings and self-discovery...but I guess I would be too afraid of getting home sick and wanting to be near my family and friends. We never know where life will take us, though...thanks for sharing!

    I agree about his grasp on language (all 7 or 8 that he speaks fluently). He has a way of speaking (and writing) that is simple, profound, and peaceful. It is very powerful, yet still calm and understanding.


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