Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Being Peace (Being Peace, #1)” as Want to Read:
Being Peace (Being Peace, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Being Peace

(Being Peace)

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  12,154 ratings  ·  619 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. ...more
Paperback, 115 pages
Published March 1st 1988 by Parallax Press (first published 1987)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Being Peace, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Being Peace

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.30  · 
Rating details
 ·  12,154 ratings  ·  619 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Being Peace (Being Peace, #1)
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: buddhism
Being Peace

I keep Thich Naht Hanh's books in my book case
but anymore I do not read them.

I think of him often, ever since he had a stroke.
He made it though, but I can't find out how he is.
As far as I know he is still alive
and still a very wise but old man.

Some days when I walk in the woods I try to breathe in peace
and breathe it out again,
but it has been so many years that now I think more about what people are going through in the world and the changes that are taking place in this earth,
Nov 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gen-nonfiction
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
Jul 10, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: buddhism
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. ...more
Michael Armijo
Nov 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
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
Feb 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Extraordinary in its simplicity and humanity, clearly outlining the very personality needed for our species to evolve. Gentle and practical in its approach.

“A smile makes you master of yourself. "

“Recently, one friend asked me, ‘How can I force myself to smile when I am filled with sorrow? It isn't natural.’ I told her she must be able to smile to her sorrow, because we are more than our sorrow. A human being is like a television set with millions of channels. If we turn the Buddha on
Iona  Stewart
Apr 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I didn’t find this book to be as easy-to-read as ”Peace is every step”, which I previously reviewed. I feel that it goes more deeply into things and thus is more challenging.

Thich Nhat Hanh is a Buddhist from Vietnam who now lives in exile in France. He recently had a stroke at the age of about 90 and was seriously ill, but survived.

This book is a collection of talks he gave to peacemakers and meditation students in 1985.

He tells us of the importance of walking meditation and smiling, and offers
Jul 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing
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
Jan 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: self-help
I've spent the last 3 days listening to the audio version of this book and felt peaceful and calm ever since. Some of my most favourite quotes from the book:

“For things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them.”

“Do not say that I'll depart tomorrow because even today I still arrive.”

“We have to be in the present time, because only the present is real, only in the present can we be alive. We do not practice for the sake of the future, to be reborn in a par
Jun 26, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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.
Dec 16, 2014 rated it it was ok
This is a quintessential 'good book' - in the sense that it has nothing that you can disapprove of, but again, nothing that you don't know already. Yeah, one must be good, the book says. But how, the book doesn't talk more about that. Yeah, you shouldn't get angry and value others' opinion as much as yours, the book says. But what if you are dealing with a certified moron and unarguably and irrefutably absurd opinions, the book err.. doesn't talk about that.
At times, I felt like the author start
Jan 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
1st Read: Worth reading several times over. I have direction on how to deepen my Buddha practice. I will need to read this book numerous times. Fortunately, such a short book, only 115 pages.

2nd Read: I will read this book repeatedly and practice a bit here and a bit here my Buddha nature until it becomes my usual nature.

His books when I purchase them, find a special place on my personal bookshelves for a lifetime. I find his words of wisdom bring me inner peace and serenity which I can read over and over. I found his words in this book particularly healing and guiding as we here in the US go through such a turbulent time of fear, anger, hostility, and violence. How do we find compassion within ourselves, how do we find compassion within another, how do we create the bridge of resolution. These are some of the q ...more
Mar 21, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: buddhism
Like most Thich Nhat Hanh books, this is a very sweet and very simple book. Good advice. Not complicated. Just clear and direct. Maybe too simple on a couple of points -- not sure. He seems to say that we won't change things by demonstrating. Not sure about that. But being peaceful, clearheaded and calm while planning and participating in a demonstration seems like a good idea. ...more
Apr 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spirituality
In which I learned that Thich Nhat Hanh's way of offering Buddhism to westerners is one of those simple-but-difficult, deep ideas. Just breathe and smile. ...more
Sep 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: religious
Peace: not a new concept. But, today, it does seem novel. Smile. Breathe. Be mindful. Repeat.
Originally published in 1987, Being Peace outlasts its post-Vietnam, Reagan-Era milieu for the most part. No doubt the many references to nuclear proliferation will seem a bit dated, but the wisdom is that suffering is indeed universal and timeless, so we need not jump far to find the proliferations and crises of our own time. Further, anyone aware of Nhat Hanh's work with the Vietnamese boat people will understand that this is not some monastic who sat on a cushion away from society, but instea ...more
K.A. Ashcomb
Feb 19, 2022 rated it really liked it
The past me would have been skeptical about the benefits of simply breathing and being in the present moment if I hadn't started meditating every day a few years ago and seen firsthand that the studies praising the practice of mindfulness are spot on. Yet, even when I say this and say such a thing as simply, there's nothing easy about being present to breathe in and out. Lately, my mind has been wandering around in novelty of all that is going on, and my breath has gotten shorter and shallower. ...more
Dec 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I read this book years ago when I took a grad school class on Buddhist meditation practices. I liked it then. I liked it even more this time around, 15 years later. Thich Nhat Hanh is often quoted, because he's pithy and truly excellent as a teacher. However, in larger doses...he's even better. I'm coming to this book as a traditionally observant Jewish yeshivah/rabbinical student. I think, along with Thomas Merton and several other teachers from a variety of religions, that Thich Nhat Hanh's te ...more
Peter Upton
Feb 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Over the years I have read many spiritual books that are all very similar and generally manage to annoy me by telling me that if I were truly advanced in understanding and in meditation practices I should be detached enough and wise enough not to mourn for the loss of those I love. Yet elsewhere I have read psychologists warning that one of the dangers of meditation is the risk of depersonalization. A state of flattened emotions where you are no longer able to empathize with others. So what to o ...more
Brian Pond
Oct 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Great book with inspiring insights and info about Zen Buddhism. I honestly think I like this more than Peace Is Every Step. There are actually many anecdotes and lessons in Being Peace (1988) that appear essentially word for word in Peace Is Every Step (1992). I found Being Peace more informative in providing techniques and methods for meditation.
John Stepper
Jul 15, 2022 rated it really liked it
Each book by Thich Nhat Hanh is both the same and different. Familiar and surprising. The themes are (of course) consistent and worth repeating. And yet the stories and examples change, and I find myself appreciating nuances I hadn’t quite grasped before.

Being Peace offers wonderful reminders, affirmations, and inspiration to keep practicing.
Sep 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars (liked it)
Fatimaeliza Gonzalez
Mar 23, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A lovely quick read about enjoying the present moment to find peace and bringing you meditation practice into everyday things you do.
Matt Jaggi
I recently saw a psychic medium who suggested I invite Buddha into my spiritual practice to help sort out some of the drama in my life. (Me? Dramatic? Never! Haha.)

I knew nothing about the dude, so I read this book to learn more about Buddhism. I must say, altho not everything tickled my fancy, I did learn some really insightful meditation tips. And now I have a joyful Buddha statue who lives among my house plants.
Nov 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: meditation, buddhism
A lovely simple intro to Thich Nhat Hanh, to buddhism and to meditation.
Aug 25, 2016 added it
Shelves: living-now
A treasure trove beyond any stars.
Being peace is as the name suggests about creating a peaceful, caring, joyous,compassionate,humane individuals, society and world.
A synopsis of the essential rubies in the chapter will be quite useful for the aspiring reader and practitioner:
1. 'suffering is enough '
Life has joys and sorrows. We look generally in a skewed manner to the dark. There is also a tendency to escape by TV , telephone etc.Thict suggests being present in the moment while drinking tea,
Indran Fernando
Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was ok
Can't quite give this a 3. Found it to have fewer ideas than I expected. Some things in this book are debatable but they are presented with what I took as an almost smug matter-of-factness. In general, it's a book that could resonate more or less depending on one's mood, and right now my mood is more of a no-BS one. For example I noticed Hanh likes to use the mystical-sounding construction "A is B. And so to we may recognize that B... is A!" Or something like, 'we need to not just sit in silence ...more
Feb 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Everyday life is at times filled with stress, confusion, worrying and even suffering. People tend to live their lives in a rush; going for one place to another without ever truly noticing or appreciating the world around them. Thich Nhat Hanh’s book "Being Peace" is all about the importance of being in synch with the wonders of the world, living in the moment, and most of all the effect of being happy and at peace with oneself and how this affects the lives of the people around us.

Thich Nhat Han
Aug 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Beautiful poem that has greatly impacted my own life: "Please Call Me By My True Names"

Do not say that I'll depart tomorrow
because even today I still arrive.

Look deeply: I arrive in every second
to be a bud on a spring branch,
to be a tiny bird, with wings still fragile,
learning to sing in my new nest,
to be a caterpillar in the heart of a flower,
to be a jewel hiding itself in a stone.

I still arrive, in order to laugh and to cry,
in order to fear and to hope.
The rhythm of my heart is the bir
Dec 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mindfulness
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
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: book edited as a different book than original edition 2 10 Sep 15, 2022 07:31AM  
Paths to Wholeness: Thich Nhat Hanh 4 23 Jan 16, 2017 05:30AM  
Reading Peace : December's Pick and Mindful Monday Sale 13 74 Dec 06, 2014 10:31PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Buddha Is Still Teaching: Contemporary Buddhist Wisdom
  • Teachings of the Buddha
  • Good Life, Good Death
  • Bringing Home the Dharma: Awakening Right Where You Are
  • Smile at Fear: Awakening the True Heart of Bravery
  • Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind: Informal Talks on Zen Meditation and Practice
  • The Beginner's Guide to Buddhism
  • Food for the Heart: The Collected Teachings of Ajahn Chah
  • Getting Unstuck: Breaking Your Habitual Patterns & Encountering Naked Reality
  • The Heron
  • Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness: Walking the Buddha's Path
  • Breath by Breath: The Liberating Practice of Insight Meditation
  • Meditation in Action
  • The Path Is the Goal: A Basic Handbook of Buddhist Meditation
  • Training in Compassion: Zen Teachings on the Practice of Lojong
  • The Essence of the Heart Sutra: The Dalai Lama's Heart of Wisdom Teachings
  • The History of the Bible: The Making of the New Testament Canon
  • Being Nobody, Going Nowhere: Meditations on the Buddhist Path
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Thích Nhất Hạnh was a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, teacher, author, poet and peace activist who now lived 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

Other books in the series

Being Peace (2 books)
  • Touching Peace: Practicing the Art of Mindful Living (Being Peace, #2)

News & Interviews

Celeste Ng’s new novel, Our Missing Hearts, depicts a disturbing version of the United States, set in the vaguely distant future, rife with...
19 likes · 0 comments
“Breathing in, I calm body and mind. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment I know this is the only moment.” 636 likes
“For things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them.” 544 likes
More quotes…