Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on love, peace, and compassion.
Thich Nhat Hanh was born on 11 October 1926 and passed away in January 2022. He was a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, founder of the Plum Village Tradition.
He was a Zen Master, spiritual leader, poet, and peace activist, revered around the world for his pioneering teachings on mindfulness, global ethics, and peace. He was the founder of the largest monastic order in the West.
Thich Nhat Hanh spent most of his later life residing at the Plum Village Monastery in southwest France, but he traveled to various countries to give retreats and talks. He coined the term “Engaged Buddhism” in his book Vietnam: Lotus in a Sea of Fire.
In November 2018, he returned to Vietnam to spend his remaining days at his “root temple”, Tu Hieu Temple, near Hue.
Thich Nhat Hanh has published over 130 books, including more than 100 in English, which have sold over 5 million worldwide.
He was active in the peace movement and deep ecology, promoting nonviolent solutions to conflict.
Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes
Here is a collection of Thich Nhat Hanh quotes to inspire and awaken love, compassion, and understanding.
“Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today.”
“In true dialogue, both sides are willing to change.”
“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.”
“At any moment, you have a choice that either leads you closer to your spirit or further away from it.”
“Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything – anger, anxiety, or possessions – we cannot be free.”
“We can all practice beginning anew. We can always start over.”
“To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.”
“Anger is like a storm rising up from the bottom of your consciousness. When you feel it coming, turn your focus to your breath.
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“We are here to awaken from our illusion of separateness.”
“The seed of suffering in you may be strong, but don’t wait until you have no more suffering before allowing yourself to be happy.”
“Every thought you produce, anything you say, any action you do, it bears your signature.”
“Many of us have been running all our lives. Practice stopping.”
“When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over. He does not need punishment; he needs help.”
“We are all the leaves of one tree. We are all the waves of one sea.”
“Every breath we take, every step we make, can be filled with peace, joy and serenity.”
“Many people are alive but don’t touch the miracle of being alive.”
Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on Spirituality
“No one has ever lived in the past or the future, only the now.”
“To think in terms of either pessimism or optimism oversimplifies the truth. The problem is to see reality as it is.”
“If you touch one thing with deep awareness, you touch everything.”
“People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar.”
“I have the impression that many of us are afraid of silence. We’re always taking in something – text, music, radio, television, or thoughts – to occupy the space. If quiet and space are so important for our happiness, why don’t we make more room for them in our lives?”
“Breathing in, I calm body and mind. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment I know this is the only moment.”
“Happiness does not come from consumption of things.”
Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on Love
“Patience is the mark of true love. If you truly love someone, you will be more patient with that person.”
“When you love someone, the best thing you can offer is your presence. How can you love if you are not there?”
“If you love someone but rarely make yourself available to him or her, that is not true love.”
“Love is the capacity to take care, to protect, to nourish.”
“You must love in such a way that the person you love feels free.”
“they will bloom like flowers.”
“If we do not know how to take care of ourselves and to love ourselves, we cannot take care of the people we love. Loving oneself is the foundation for loving another person.”
Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on Peace
“Peace in the world starts with peace in oneself. If everyone lives mindfully, everyone will be more healthy, feel more fulfilled in their daily lives and there will be more peace.”
“Peace is present right here and now, in ourselves and in everything we do and see. Every breath we take, every step we take, can be filled with peace, joy, and serenity. The question is whether or not we are in touch with it. We need only to be awake, alive in the present moment.”
“If in our daily life we can smile, if we can be peaceful and happy, not only we, but everyone will profit from it. This is the most basic kind of peace work.”
“The mind can go in a thousand directions, but on this beautiful path, I walk in peace. With each step, the wind blows. With each step, a flower blooms.”
Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on Compassion
Quotes on compassion to awaken sympathy, understanding and kindness.
“Look at flowers, butterflies, trees, and children with the eyes of compassion. Compassion will change your life and make it wonderful.”
“Waking up this morning, I smile. Twenty-four brand new hours are before me. I vow to live fully in each moment and to look at all beings with eyes of compassion.”
“When you have enough understanding and compassion in you, then that amount of understanding and compassion will try to express itself in action. And your practice should help you to cultivate more understanding and compassion.”
“When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over. He does not need punishment; he needs help. That’s the message he is sending.
“A bodhisattva is someone who has compassion within himself or herself and who is able to make another person smile or help someone suffer less. Every one of us is capable of this.
Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on Meditation
“Meditation can help us embrace our worries, our fear, our anger; and that is very healing. We let our own natural capacity of healing do the work.”
“Total relaxation is the secret to enjoying sitting meditation. I sit with my spine upright, but not rigid; and I relax all the muscles in my body.”
“Meditation is to get insight, to get understanding and compassion, and when you have them, you are compelled to act.”
“Sitting in meditation is nourishment for your spirit and nourishment for your body, as well.”
Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on Happiness
“There is no way to happiness – happiness is the way.”
“The source of love is deep in us and we can help others realize a lot of happiness. One word, one action, one thought can reduce another person’s suffering and bring that person joy.”
I hope you enjoyed these quotes from Thich Nhat Hanh.
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