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Teachings on Love

4.34  ·  Rating Details ·  863 Ratings  ·  70 Reviews
Relationships are always complex and challenging, but never more so than in today’s hectic, stressful world. Weaving together traditional stories, personal experiences, and a deep understanding of the Buddha's way of mindful living, Thich Nhat Hanh's Teachings on Love provides step-by-step practices that foster understanding and intimacy in any relationship and extend our ...more
Paperback, 195 pages
Published December 5th 2006 by Parallax Press (first published March 1st 1996)
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May 28, 2013 Rachel rated it it was amazing
The concept that really stuck with me is the metaphor that your partner is a garden with all different types of seeds -- seeds of jealousy, seeds of compassion, seeds of generosity, seeds of anger...and as their partner, you need to water the positive seeds so that they grow stronger than the negative seeds. BUT each person's garden is already planted with a certain amount of each type of seed so you should also pick the partner with a good garden.
Jul 14, 2011 Meg rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
If you've read something else Thich Nhat Hanh has written, then you've already read this. Unlike other books by Thich, this moves away from the general abstracts of love and instead focuses on specific B Buddhist doctrine. As someone who is not a constituent of Buddhism, I found it too narrow to be readily applicable to my life. I wasn't captivated by it, nor did I get very much out of it. Skip this one and read his other book True Love instead.
Josh M
Jul 14, 2009 Josh M rated it it was amazing
This book changed my life. That is all i can say...there isn't much better praise than that. The meditations and knowledge contained in this book will add so much vibrance to your life...whether you are single or not.

Buy it, borrow it, or check it is definitely a must read.
Jan 26, 2017 Volkert rated it it was amazing
This is the second book by Thich Nhat Hanh that I've read in the past month (the first one was Living Buddha, Living Christ). I began exploring the teachings of Hanh thanks to the writing of Jim Forest, founder of the Orthodox Peace Fellowship, and long ago affiliated with the Catholic Peace Fellowship and the Fellowship of Reconciliation. That is how Jim got to know Thich Nhat Hann back in the Sixties, as the War in Vietnam was still raging. Thich Nhat Hanh was welcomed to this country by, amon ...more
Robert C.
Oct 28, 2012 Robert C. rated it it was amazing
Shelves: knowledge
Lovely. Another book I started reading about 5 years ago and I stopped because the teachings were so deep that I wanted to read them very, very slowly and appreciate every single drop as it dripped into me like nectar. I wanted the whole experience to be a meditation on love. I found at the time that I was not able to devote enough time and attention to the book to do it justice, so I stopped reading and put it on hold... until now.
When I started reading again it was as if I never stopped. I ste
Mar 04, 2015 Liz rated it it was amazing
Although this book is written by a Buddhist monk, anyone can benefit from its teachings. Reading it is like receiving nourishment after being parched and starved in the desert for days. I am without religion yet I embrace any teachings from any religion that spread love and humanity. This book is a guidebook on how to treat ourselves in order to live better lives. It was gently suggested to me for study by a friend who saw that I suffered ills within my soul. It's packed with meaning behind ever ...more
Taylor Trauger
Compared to other books I've read of Thich's, Teachings on Love leaned more heavily on Buddhist religion and spirituality over the general, all-encompassing views on life and love he provides. It's still filled with great advice and practices worth trying, but while I appreciate mindfulness and compassion and am doing a lot of work around that in my life, I'm not a Buddhist, and I'm not a theist, and because of that, certain parts of this book alienated me, even though I usually find Thich's wri ...more
Mar 16, 2017 Fanfan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Un bonheur.
Apr 16, 2016 Veronica rated it really liked it
One of the more difficult picks for me on the Book Riot Read Harder Challenge list was to read a book by an author from southeast Asia. I don’t know much about literature from this area – and thus the purpose of the challenge, to expand literary horizons – so I felt that my choice would be fairly random and rather hit or miss. Then I saw that one of my GoodReads friends had saved a book by Thich Nhat Hahn, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk with a proliferation of writings on peace, mindfulness, and lov ...more
Sean Goh
Nov 20, 2016 Sean Goh rated it really liked it
Pretty packed with wisdom, but wisdom is dead unless put into practice.
When our hearts are small, our understanding and compassion are limited and we suffer. We can't accept or tolerate others and their shortcomings and we demand that they change. But when our hearts expand, the same things don't make us suffer anymore. We have a lot of understanding and compassion and can embrace others.

To love is to look at each other and to look together in the same direction.

Maitri (love) is the inte
Apr 25, 2008 Myriam rated it it was amazing
The last time I read this book in whole was two years ago; I first read it when it came out in 1997 or so. It is one of those books, like the Tao Te Ching, that one comes back to and again. Thich Nhat Hanh's delineation of the various types of love and their best manifestations, anecdotes and meditations on how to truly be in a place of love, practicing love that is compassionate, in tune with our inner selves, non-injurious to others and compassionate towards our ancestors and the earth are ins ...more
Sep 24, 2014 Emily rated it it was amazing
Teachings on Love was my first real exposure to Buddhist teachings. I marveled at the truths in this book that resonated with me to my core. I found myself thinking, "if all of us could just be MINDFUL in our daily lives, the world would be transformed!" I have incorporated some of the meditations in my life and they have lightened my heart immensely. This book is a truly remarkable "how to" guide to loving those around you and releasing anger from yourself. It is one I hope to read again and ag ...more
Oct 28, 2013 Bill added it
Thich Nhat Hanh offers a poetic and spiritual treatise on love from the Buddhist perspective. Again and again I was challenged in my own spirituality to be more mindful and connected. I was particularly challenged by the reminders to meditate on your "enemies" and to keep doing so until you can no longer see them as different than yourself and thus their suffering is yours. It's harder to hate somebody when you really do that...3.75 Martinie glasses.
Nikhil Sharathchandran
Dec 15, 2016 Nikhil Sharathchandran rated it it was amazing
After reading just one chapter from Thich Nhat Hanh's book, I fell in love with it. Not only will you have a different outlook on those close to your heart, you will also know how to make a difference..Tich Nhat Hanh is the most known writer of Buddhism of our time and he has done a stunning job talking about and teaching the Buddha's ideas on love. This is an inspiring piece of literature; one that should not be missed.
Nov 04, 2015 Marianne rated it really liked it
I really appreciated the stories of love, they are an insightful way into the heart of oneself and others. I was less interested in the religious teachings as they are not my own, and I believe we should be able to access and understand our hearts without changing religious practices. A beautiful book I have already highlighted for its lessons, it has already reminded me of the beauty of compassion, and how easy it is to make positive, critical choices for ourselves.
Zac Sigler
Aug 13, 2013 Zac Sigler rated it really liked it
I liked this, but I think I liked it more because I've never read a mindfulness book geared toward love before. If I had, I think much of it may have been repetitive. That said, I think the best thing about this book is that it includes many mindfulness/love meditations to practice. Some are long, so I need to find an alternative to memorization. I'm choosing not to spend the time it would take to memorize them word for word.
Thanh Huong
Dec 07, 2016 Thanh Huong rated it liked it
Reading this book while having some troubles with my boyfriend. I decided to open my heart to forgive everything and the result was really great, my boyfriend (after some days of bad mood) came back to me.

Thanks Master Thich Nhat Hanh for his easily understanding explanation on Buddhism. Really happy to read it.
Jan 25, 2013 Alice rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Listened to the audiobook, which is not a reading of the book, but instead a collection of recorded lectures Thich Nhat Hanh gave in New York. The lectures were okay, but disjointed and rambling. I was disappointed by the audio version of this title. I would like to give this title a second try, however, and read the print book.
Oct 24, 2008 Shirley rated it really liked it
Recommended to Shirley by: Mairi
Brilliant. It had been a long time since I'd read any Buddhist writings.

A great overview on love... its fundamental link to enlightenment. A broader picture than simply romantic chick-flick love... but LOVE. Self love, true love,... focusing on the real emotion, not mixing it with pleasure, for example, but with joy, altruism, etc.
Love is more than an emotion. Drawing on millennia of Buddhist wisdom and his own therapeutic methods, Teachings on Love further develops his practical notion of interbeing in terms of love. If all things are interrelated, what could be more paramount to negotiating those relations than love? And more than just a way of relating, love is a way of living..." --Brian Bruya
Dan Robinson
Jan 06, 2008 Dan Robinson is currently reading it
What is that group that buys books and then food if there is money left? I think that I should join. Picked up this one in the bookstore and had to take it home - think that I'll get out the highlighter and start marking it up. Thay really speaks to me personally and in regards to relationships re possesiveness etc.. looks really good so far.
Feb 05, 2015 Mahinn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Utterly benign and gentle. This book is not only a reminder to love but a primer on how to go about it. It's made real simple - no religion needed. No intellectual debating. No sacrifices, no fasts, no martyrs. Just faith, surrender, and the willingness to make peace with love and make love your way of life.
Dec 10, 2007 Heather rated it liked it
Recommends it for: everyone; especially those interested in meditation
Book has great mantras and good ideas for meditation and broadening one's perspective on what love encompasses. This book is not about sappy valentines day with flowers love but the love for one's self and everyone that if it grows will eventually spill over into all parts of life. I really found the excercises helpful and enjoyed reading the book on my way to work everyday.
Mar 14, 2008 Leaning-Good rated it it was amazing

evoL sI laeR : Real Is Love.

Love is NOTHING,
To Be Hurt.

Love is Such Thing!! ;
JOIN & JOY On Earth!


"We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly."
— Anonymous

Jan 19, 2008 Sara rated it it was amazing
for a few weeks in december, i began each day with my cup of tea and a brief excerpt from teachings on love. it was indeed the most perfect way to embrace the mornings, and the days felt all the more harmonious having thich nhat hanh's words with me...
...delicate and gentle wisdom found here...if you've not read it, you must!
Taylor Nelson
Nov 17, 2015 Taylor Nelson rated it really liked it
The book taught me a lot about buddhist views and beliefs. I enjoyed learning about healthy relationships and love. I loved the messages that it promoted but the author was a little repetitive with his preachings. I felt like after reading the first half of the book i didn't need to read the second half because his words were predictable.
Sep 30, 2008 Christine rated it it was amazing
I respect him very much as a Buddhist elder and author. This is both sweet and poetic while also giving some really practical suggestions about how to nourish your relationships. I've read it a couple times now and still pick it up and look at it sometimes for ideas about meditation.
Marty Babits
Mar 19, 2014 Marty Babits rated it really liked it
Well-done. As simple and evocative as a fairy tale but as tough minded and reality oriented as a Colombo tale. How's that for a combination? An enjoyable and insightful book on love relationships. As a couples therapist I have suggested that numerous clients read sections of this book.
Aug 06, 2008 Heather rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone.
Recommended to Heather by: Michelle Pace.
This book is a great book to help you feel more love for yourself and those around you I gained a lot from reading this. Every chapter leaves you feeling better about yourself and others then you did before picking up the book.
Dec 28, 2013 Kathryn rated it it was amazing
I love this book! My local sangha's book club read this book a couple years ago and I have returned again and again to be nourished by its wisdom. In my upcoming wedding we are using several excerpts from it, both of us resonating with so many concepts.
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Thích Nhất Hạnh is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, teacher, author, poet and peace activist who now lives in southwest France where he was in exile for many years. Born Nguyễn Xuân Bảo, Thích Nhất Hạnh joined a Zen (Vietnamese: Thiền) monastery at the age of 16, and studied Buddhism as a novitiate. Upon his ordination as a monk in 1949, he assumed the Dharma name Thích Nhất Hạnh. Thích is an honorary ...more
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“Through my love for you, I want to express my love for the whole cosmos, the whole of humanity, and all beings. By living with you, I want to learn to love everyone and all species. If I succeed in loving you, I will be able to love everyone and all species on Earth... This is the real message of love.” 595 likes
“Each moment is a chance for us to make peace with the world, to make peace possible for the world, to make happiness possible for the world.” 94 likes
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