Tag Archives: suffering

If We Could Poll the Dead Iraqis-Poem, Music, and Interview with Thich Nhat Hanh

I wrote this poem this week after listening to an American soldier talk about his deep regret over his part in the Iraqi war and his sorrow over his role in the destruction and loss of so many lives. After the poem, please have a listen to John Gorka’s powerful song, “The Road of Good […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh and Children

Thich Nhat Hanh on Healing the Wounded Child in Us

From the great heart of the Buddha, and from the great heart of Thich Nhat Hanh, to the wounded child in each of us: “In our childhood we may have been through stages of great difficulties. We have been wounded, we have had traumas and we generally do not want to remember those stages of […]

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The End of Suffering-The Light at the End of the Tunnel

This is the third in a series of articles sharing  insights of some spiritual thinkers on the First Noble Truth, the truth of suffering. The first article shared insights from Ken Wilber and can be read here: Dissatisfaction with Life—the Start of Discovery The second shared insights from Daniel Ingram and can be read here: […]

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Dealing with Suffering *is* Spiritual Practice

This is the second in a three-part series of articles sharing the insights of some spiritual thinkers on the subject of suffering and the First Noble Truth. In the first article, I shared insights from Ken Wilber’s No Boundary. You can read the post here: Dissatisfaction with Life-the Start of Discovery This excerpt in this […]

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Dissatisfaction with Life-the Start of Discovery

The Buddha is often quoted as saying he taught one thing: “I teach suffering and the end of suffering.” Sounds kind of limiting and simplistic, no? Where’s the joy and liberation in that? Since the First Noble Truth is the truth of suffering, and since this insight is so often misunderstood by non-Buddhists, and even […]

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What Actually Happens Inside Us When We Are Hurt By Another?

We feel that someone has hurt us, but is the hurt we feel caused by the other person?  Or are the actions of others merely the “approximate cause” of the suffering—in other words, the trigger, but not the actual cause of the suffering itself? Put that way, it might seem obvious. Others can’t really make […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh-The Five Mindfulness Trainings

I still remember vividly taking the Five Mindful Trainings vow in 2002 from Thich Nhat Hanh at Stonehill College in Massachusetts. By now, the Trainings are written in my heart, but I still look at them once a week, renewing my vow and sending to Thây, his monks and nuns, and his students, any merit […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh-The Holy Truth of Suffering

Dear friends, the Buddhadharma is described as something that you can come and see by yourself. You don’t have to believe something through another person, even the clergy, the priest, the mediator. The ultimate dimension of reality is something you can touch, you can see by yourself. And you can do it now, and here; […]

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The Karma of Not-self (audio)

Here’s another skillful teaching from Thanissaro Bhikkhu on how to use the idea of “not-self” skillfully. The teaching on “not-self” is some esoteric, metaphysical idea that we think about. It’s an immensely practical teaching that helps us look at how our thoughts and actions create a sense of self that determines our happiness or our […]

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Healing the Body with Mindfulness of Breathing

This excerpt from a talk by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh explains how to use mindfulness of breathing to bring loving-kindness to our dear bodies. The physical effect of this can be truly remarkable. As Thây says, “You should really love your body. You should really take care of your body. Mindful breathing, with rest, […]

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There’s More to Dying Than Death-A Buddhist Perspective

“It is understandable that those who do not believe there is any reality deeper than this life, and the death that ends it, do not want to dwell on the fact of death. But if you suspect there is a way to awaken to a deeper, timeless reality that lies beyond birth and death, there […]

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Some Helpful Buddhist Meditations on Death (audio)

Of all the challenges we face as humans, none is more difficult than death. Whether it’s the death of a loved one, the death of thousands in some natural disaster, or the fear of our own eventual demise, death is the terrible problem that won’t go away. Nothing causes more suffering. Confronted with age, sickness, […]

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How Insight and Loving-kindness Free Us from Mental Parasites

In an earlier post entitled “Taming Elephants-How To Transform Negative Habit Energies,” I shared teachings from Thich Nhat Hanh on how to deal with what he called “habit energies.” As Thầy, as Thich Nhat Hanh is affectionately known by his students, writes: “We know how strong, how powerful the habit energy is. We notice that […]

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Samsara-It’s a Verb not a Place

If you read “Nirvana is a verb, not a place,” and it helped your practice, then this short article will probably make a lot of sense too. One of the things I love about Buddhism is that it makes us look at our actions—what we do and don’t do—as the literal creator of our individual […]

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