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Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life
 
 


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Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life [Paperback]

Thich Nhat Hanh , Arnold Kotler , H. H. the Dalai Lama
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (378 customer reviews)

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Book Description

March 1, 1992
In the rush of modern life, we tend to lose touch with the peace that is available in each moment. World-renowned Zen master, spiritual leader, and author Thich Nhat Hanh shows us how to make positive use of the very situations that usually pressure and antagonize us. For him a ringing telephone can be a signal to call us back to our true selves. Dirty dishes, red lights, and traffic jams are spiritual friends on the path to "mindfulness"—the process of keeping our consciousness alive to our present experience and reality. The most profound satisfactions, the deepest feelings of joy and completeness lie as close at hand as our next aware breath and the smile we can form right now.

Lucidly and beautifully written, Peace Is Every Step contains commentaries and meditations, personal anecdotes and stories from Nhat Hanh's experiences as a peace activist, teacher, and community leader. It begins where the reader already is—in the kitchen, office, driving a car, walking a part—and shows how deep meditative presence is available now. Nhat Hanh provides exercises to increase our awareness of our own body and mind through conscious breathing, which can bring immediate joy and peace. Nhat Hanh also shows how to be aware of relationships with others and of the world around us, its beauty and also its pollution and injustices. the deceptively simple practices of Peace Is Every Step encourage the reader to work for peace in the world as he or she continues to work on sustaining inner peace by turning the "mindless" into the mindFUL.

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Thich Nhat Hanh's writing is deceptive in its subtlety. He'll go on and on with stories about tree-hugging or metaphors involving raw potatoes; he'll tell you how to eat mindfully, even how to breathe and walk; he'll suggest looking closely at a flower and to see the sun as your heart. As the Zen teacher Richard Baker commented, however, Nhat Hanh is "a cross between a cloud, a snail, and piece of heavy machinery." Sooner or later, it begins to sink in that Nhat Hanh is conveying a depth of psychology and a world outlook that require nothing less than a complete paradigm shift. Through his cute stories and compassionate admonitions, he gradually builds up to his philosophy of interbeing, the notion that none of us is separately, but rather that we inter-are. The ramifications are explosive. How can we mindlessly and selfishly pursue our individual ends, when we are inextricably bound up with everyone and everything else? We see an enemy not as focus of anger but as a human with a complex history, who could be us if we had the same history. Suffice it to say, that after reading Peace Is Every Step, you'll never look at a plastic bag the same way again, and you may even develop a penchant for hugging trees. --Brian Bruya

From Publishers Weekly

"Next time you are caught in a traffic jam . . . sit back and smile . . . a smile of compassion and loving kindness." While such sappy Zen advice from a Buddhist monk, a Vietnamese resident in France following his exile in 1966, could send Western seekers of enlightenment into overdrive, fortunately most of the suggestions offered in this slim guidebook are of more substance. In a series of vignettes and short passages, e.g., "Cooking Our Potatoes," Nhat Hanh outlines techniques for living mindfullly, that is, in the present. Emphasizing that all things are interconnected on personal and political levels, he notes, for example, that the wealth of one society is based on the poverty of others. This book of illuminating reminders bids us to reorient the way we look at the world, turning away from a goal-driven, me-first modality toward a humanitarian perspective.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 134 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam (March 1, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553351397
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553351392
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (378 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
(378)
4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
231 of 242 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Gem: Small And Precious December 15, 2002
Format:Paperback
Peace is not external, so we do not need to chase it. Peace is already present but we have to get in touch with it. This is attained through mindfulness: living in the present moment, in the here and now. Thich Nhat Hanh, Zen master and spiritual leader teaches mindfulness through conscious breathing and smiling. Connecting the body and mind, to find peace and happiness even in the most unlikely situations. Breathing and smiling! Is that it? You may be as skeptical as I was before practicing this exercise: breathe in, while reciting " breathing in I calm my body" then breathe out while smiling and reciting "breathing out I smile" do this three times! This is a very easy yet very effective exercise, do this often enough, in any position at any time (sitting, lying, driving, walking, before you eat, before you wash the dishes, when you hear the phone ring....) and enjoy being calm, relaxed and peaceful.
The author teaches us to be mindful of the people in our life, of the food we eat and of the environment around us.... Turn off the TV and instead walk in the park, visit a good friend, sit down for a meal with family or friends or even by yourself but before you dig in, breath smile, appreciate the food on the table, then eat mindfully, be aware of the taste, the smell, the texture, even if its only a bowl of rice, be happy, be thankful. He also teaches how to transform unpleasant feelings like anger for example into something more wholesome like understanding, using a 5-step method. By practicing understanding and loving speech instead of blaming and arguing we can help each other be happy. By knowing the true nature, the essence of the people around us we can enjoy each other. Mindfulness should lead to proactivity.
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76 of 80 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Peace Now is NOT Merely a Slogan January 19, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Hanh's book is a wonderful exhortation for all of us to find deep sprirituality in the midst of what we are NOW, what we do NOW, and simply the moment we call NOW. I greatly admire this Buddhist author's humility. He does not say "follow in my footsteps," but rather invites us to walk alongside him, and discover our own paths to "mindfulness." This is a very welcome change of pace from all the "spiritual" books that attempt to sell the author's own beliefs about God, or worse yet, attempt to promote the financial well-being of the author. Hanh has the resume to prove his sincerity -- having taken great risks to urge reconciliation at a time when the U.S. and Vietnam were torn by violent conflict. He adheres to the Zen tradition of making no demands on what people choose to believe, or what religion they should practice. "Peace Is Every Step" is a well expressed invitation to join him in this sincere spiritual quest.
A word of caution though -- you are not likely to benefit from the book unless you actually *practice* the techniques Hanh so eloquently describes. However, if you do, you will find peace, because it is already there inside of you. (And his other books are very much worth reading too!)
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99 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing July 19, 2000
Format:Paperback
This book was written by a Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk. But don't let that fool you, this book is for everyone. The author doesn't try to convert you to his religion, the only Buddhist principles in this book go hand in hand with many Christian beliefs. The author shows how easy it is to live a fulfilling life in harmony with yourself and the world around you.
Read this book if you ever feel depressed or if you feel you are getting lost in the modern age. This book will not tell you who you are, but it will help to show you how you can discover what it is you really want and find happiness.
Thich Nan Haht was even nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by none other than Martin Luther King Jr.
Highly recommended.
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60 of 65 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Begin Your Journey of Awareness April 3, 2002
Format:Paperback
This book seems very simplistic on the surface, with what appear to be standard Eastern metaphors encouraging inner peace and awareness. Some examples are stories about meditating on a falling leaf or retreating to a quite room in your house. But as you make your way through the book and think about what you're reading, you'll find that Nhat Hanh is actually using these simple stories to make very profound points about how you can embark on a journey of inner peace. And this is serious inner peace as the Buddhists continually strive for, not just the stereotypes that you hear from Western folks who only see this stuff as a fad. Nhat Hanh describes how you can find serenity in the most mundane of activities, such as washing dishes, walking, eating, and even breathing (the breathing techniques he describes are also a key component of Yoga). His techniques for managing anger, depression, and frustration are incredibly useful and should be practiced by far more Westerners. The only flaw in this book is in some sections of Part 3, in which Nhat Hanh attempts to move these techniques from your inner world to the outer world, and contends that these methods of inner awareness can help solve the world's problems or war, hunger, crime, etc. if everyone just practiced them devoutly. He may be right about that, but this is far too idealistic for the real world, even if his Eastern interpretation is far more humane and open-minded than the Western view. Other than that minor flaw, I highly recommend this book if you are looking for a way to cut down on stress or anger, and would like to improve your mental and emotional health.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Just Okay
Thought this book was a bit boring. Got the premise right away, then nothing else seemed inspirational.
Published 1 day ago by kit kat
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
this was a beautifully written book. the language was so simple and coherent.
Published 2 days ago by marci j batchelor
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Shopping Experience
Excellent product very pleased
Published 4 days ago by zelda
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this book
I love this book.. It's help me to understand the reason of beeing angry and how to stop from always beeing the one person that's ready to explode when something doesn't go my... Read more
Published 8 days ago by Mari Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars Peace can be in your life
This book is a very gentle yet powerful exploration of ways to process one's experience of life, leading to greater understanding of how to live one's life with compassion and... Read more
Published 14 days ago by Maureen Peters
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Thank you.
Published 16 days ago by Michael W. Johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars Full of Wisdom
A wonderful book full of wisdom that we all could follow.
Published 23 days ago by David Cardillo
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Very useful, helpful
Published 25 days ago by Maria Rosa Garcia Sole
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book. and great delivery time thank
Great book .and great delivery time thank you
Published 25 days ago by becky medina
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommend!
Great read!
Published 1 month ago by S Dvic
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More About the Author

Thich Nhat Hanh is a Vietnamese monk, a renowned Zen master, a poet, and a peace activist. He was nominated for the Nobel Prize by Martin Luther King, Jr., in 1967, and is the author of many books, including the best-selling The Miracle of Mindfulness.

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