Being Peace
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Being Peace

4.37 of 5 stars 4.37  ·  rating details  ·  4,824 ratings  ·  202 reviews
Since its publication in 1987, "Being Peace has become a classic of contemporary religious literature. In his simple and readable style, Thich Nhat Hanh shows how our state of mind and body can make the world a peaceful place. We learn to transform the very situations that pressure and antagonize us into opportunities for practicing mindfulness.
Paperback, 115 pages
Published March 1st 1988 by Parallax Press (first published 1987)
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Even though some references are a little dated (Cold War), this book is entirely relevant now: in order to achieve peace, we each have to become peaceful. We can't wait for peace to happen, we must live it.
i found this book far more rewarding than i had expected it to be. thich nhat hanh, vietnamese poet, peace activist, and buddhist monk, has written dozens of books, many that incorporate the related themes of non-violence and zen buddhism. being peace, originally published some twenty-five years ago, is a slim affair, but contains a wealth of practical insight. nhat hanh focuses his book on the subjects of suffering, perception, non-duality, interbeing, meditation, and peace work, offering a str...more
This book is simply beautiful. If you've never read any of Tich Nhat Hanh's work I highly recommend it. A Vietnamese Buddhist monk living in France his words are moving and insightful without being preachy or full of indoctrinated messages about how Buddhism is the right path for all. What I admire about his writing and his person is that he's not afraid to admit that he experiences anger and the myriad of other human emotions that fill our lives and make it difficult for us to find a peaceful p...more
A great book! It's a collection of Thich Nhat Hanh's lectures that he gave to peaceworkers and meditation students during his tour of Buddhist centers in 1985. Among many things, he talks about walking meditation, sitting meditation, how our environment affects us and the manner in which we handle situations affects not only us, but those around us. Definitely a book that should be read several times throughout a lifetime...and should be given as a gift to others.
This book, recommended by my then therapist, skewed my vision for the better. Instead of seeing black & white, I started seeing and understanding all the shades of grey. The Middle Way. A little hokey, but whatever, it works if you want it to.
Mar 27, 2011 Holly rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2011
What a beautiful, quiet, insightful and enlightening book. As soon as I finished this book I wanted to read it again immediately. I got so much out of it the first time through, and I have a feeling I will get more out of every re-read.

I haven't read much about Buddhism, so I didn't start this book with a lot of preconceived notions or expectations. However, I did read this book in the middle of taking an extended yoga workshop, and reading about meditation really helped my yoga practice, and m...more
Michael Armijo
This book was recommended by a 'fellow photographer' friend named Beth Lambert of CANADA. It's an EXCELLENT read for any one. I also introduced it to a young man in France (who was still 'finding himself'--Frederic Deltour) and he often tells me that the book changed/improved his LIFE.

This is the perfect book for MINDFULNESS TRAINING--something we ALL need from time to time. ;)

Words that impacted me in this book:

If we are peaceful, if we are happy, we can blossom like a flower, and everyone in o...more
The more we see, the more we understand. The more we understand, the easier it is for us to have compassion and love. Understanding is the source of love. Understanding is love itself. p.107

This book is incredibly inspiring and insightful. Thich Nhat Hanh writes in a simple and beautiful way and introduces us the teachings of Buddhism and how to use these teachings and guidelines in our daily lives. He educates us on how to be more peaceful and work for peace in order to make our society more li...more
Not as much of a favorite as Mindfulness in Plain English or Full Catastrophe Living, but still very good (and no doubt this is the direction those other books would take if they hadn't been so Westernized). This book is more what I would describe as an introduction to radical Buddhism. I agree with a lot of what Hanh says in terms of making mindfulness and loving compassion part of a daily practice that's not confined to a meditation space, and also what he says about the interconnectedness of...more
Simply put, "let peace begin with me" and "let me begin with peace." I always find Thitch Nhat Hanh's writings to be simple, inspiring and refreshing. His messages are so powerful that they stay with me, and I find myself coming back to them or realizing them in my daily life. While he often references Buddhist teachings, his writings are about life, about love, about understanding. The teachings and stories transcend Buddhism and offer simple ways that everyone in the world can find peace in th...more
Hmm. It's funny to only give three stars to a book by someone who I think deserves 5+ stars for his actual work in the world...but I think I like Pema Chodron better, at least for easily accessible writings about embodying Buddhist ideals out in the messy real world. It's not that this wasn't easy to read--it was--but felt a little toooooo easy at points. Like, if you've never read anything about engaged Buddhism, here's a good starting point. I still found it a thoughtful and warm review/introd...more
This was one of the best books I've read in Buddhism. I liked that it gave practical and applicable meditation tips and weaved in the current state of global affairs. The way Hanh writes -- his sentence structure, word choice, flow -- emanates peacefulness. I found myself feeling peaceful whenever I was reading it and for a little while afterwards. Really great read for someone trying to practice Buddhism (might be confusing for someone trying to learn the basics of Buddhist philosophy).
A.H. Haar
This book was lent to me at a very difficult time in my life. I was having severe anxiety related to... well everything basically. It kept me house bound, bed bound, bound period.

This book is a treasure. It will help you if you want it to help you.
Lorraine Norris
Multiple amazing bodhissatvas for daily life. Insights into how to be a better person through breathing, mantras, and re-formulating your mind to see more positive things in the world around you.
This is a beautifully written book about the practice of Buddhism and meditation in every day life, particularly in the cultivation of peace.
Fred Kohn
I found this book far more rewarding than Living Buddha, Living Christ, the only other book I have read by this author. I also enjoy books by the Dalai Lama, but Thích Nhất Hạnh is more accessible to the Western mind, I think. In this book I found many insights that I will try incorporating into my own practice, as well as a lot of quotable material that I have written into my notes.
My 33rd birthday present from one of my favorites. I have a few of this other books, but had not dove into them yet. I'm sure this will be a catalyst for exploring the others. What's fabulous about his books are that the chapters are short, which allows the reader to take it piece by piece---read a chapter and then journal/think. Here are a few key themes that resonated with me.

Breathing in, I calm my body.
Breathing out, I smile.
Dwelling in the present moment
I know this is a wonderful mom...more
This is the best book by Thich Nhat Hanh I have ever read. I have almost every other page bookmarked. He is such a clear writer, and he doesn't make Buddhism complicated. Highly recommend this as a beginner's guide to Buddhism and mindfulness. Some of my favorite quotes:

"In the same way, the individual is made of non-individual elements. How do you expect to leave everything behind when you enter a meditation center? The kind of suffering that you carry in your heart, that is society itself." (p...more
Sarah M
Sep 29, 2008 Sarah M rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Sarah by: a friend
I recently read the book 'Being Peace' by Thich Nhat Hanh. I found the book captivating and compelling. Thich Nhat Hanh is a Buddhist monk and a peace activist. His words in this book were inspiring. Being Peace is a book that shows average people how they can achieve peace in their lives. I enjoyed this book for many reasons, while this brilliant man gave you steps on how to find your inner peace he told you about his life, which i found intriguing.
Thich Nhat Hanh showed me that no matter how...more
Taymara Jagmohan

:) This book begins in my heart, and concludes there too. It's armors are peace and meditation, which many forget to involve in their wars of living each day. We must personally honor ourselves, then we'll conquer the art of listening and understanding people. Sometimes, we hate humanity, but within our knowledge we know we must gratify it. We learn too many things each day, and it is often the power of the serendipitous knowledge that makes us wake from our beds. Know what I mean cham...more
Keith Willcock

Thich Nhat Hahn was born in Vietnam in 1926. He trained as a Buddhist monk from the age of six and was actively involved in helping his people in Vietnam recover from the war.

After visiting the U.S. and Europe on a peace mission in 1966 he was banned from returning to Vietnam and settled in southern France where he established Plum Village, a Buddhist community in exile. In 2005 he was given permission to return to his country and has visited regularly ever since.

He has published over 100 books...more
"Being Peace is a timeless and eloquent introduction to Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh and his most important teachings. First published in 1987 and translated into more than thirty languages, this spiritual classic reveals the connection between our own personal happiness and the state of the world around us.

"Thich Nhat Hanh's key practices are presented in simple and clear language, offering practical suggestions for how to create a more peaceful world 'right in the moment we are alive.' Being Pea...more
If you are a burned out activist, this is a book you will need to purchase. It is a short read, but the messages may take a lifetime to process and understand fully. In this book, unlike many of his other books, Thich Nhat Hanh offers more concrete ways of approaching world problems from a perspective of peace. He is more direct in pointing out our learning tasks to be truly effective as activists. Even as I was reading, I kept thinking, "Oh, I'll need to read this again and again for the rest o...more
Amy Leigh
thich nhat hanh is my new crush. this is a man who lives in exile from his native country (vietnam), who has spent his life helping victims of the vietnam war as well as refugees from other wars, someone who could easily be ... harsh. justifiably harsh. and yet instead he says, "if we are peaceful, if we are happy, we can smile, and everyone in our family, our entire society, will benefit from our peace."

this particular book is sprinkled with whimsical drawings, lovely poems by the author, essay...more
The first chapter was interesting, then it only went downhill for me. I have never been a nonfiction reader so that may be the reason that i disliked it. But to me it got quite boring by chapter 3. The author failed to make you excited about his writing. Every chapter seemed to be the same basic shell with a different lesson plugged in. It seemed to me that he used a lot of stereotypical phrases in the book (i.e. be one with _____, or understanding is love and love is understanding). Then he wou...more
Laurie Buchanan
I recommend it on my top-ten list of Peace resources. In order to achieve peace, we must be peace. This simple truth is the theme of this inspiring collection of lectures, given by Buddhist monk, scholar, poet and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh. If we are to change the world, he explains, we need to begin with ourselves, and awaken that eternal part of us where true peace resides - our own Buddha nature.

His straight forward writing style helps a person to realise how easy this awakening can act...more
An excellent, clear path is illuminated by Thich Nhat Hanh in this excellent little book. A collection of thoughts and meditations on mindfulness, non-duality, and the nature of peaceful existence, this is a book to enrich any spiritual tradition.
Some nice little gems in this book. For example, even though it may just be because I'm reaching 30 and don't have kids yet, I especially liked the part about smiling for your future baby.

"Please don't wait until the doctors tell you that you are going to have a baby to begin to take care of it. It is already there. Whatever you are, whatever you do, your baby will get it. Anything you eat, any worries that are on your mind will be for him or her. Can you tell me that you cannot smile? Think of...more
After picking up this book years ago, I finally finished it this year. Thich Nhat Hanh is a wise man whose ideas make a lot of sense. He brings mediation into everyday life by encouraging people to be in touch with ourselves, focusing on joy, our breathing, and being aware and alive in the present moment. He teaches "emotional literacy" by emphasizing showing compassion to others and ourselves, understanding people so we can love them, and converting destructive energy into constructive energy....more
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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
More about Thích Nhất Hạnh...
Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life Living Buddha, Living Christ The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation The Heart of the Buddha's Teaching: Transforming Suffering into Peace, Joy, and Liberation Anger: Wisdom for Cooling the Flames

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“Breathing in, I calm body and mind. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment I know this is the only moment.” 351 likes
“For things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them.” 260 likes
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