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Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life Paperback – March 1, 1992
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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 the MP3 CD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Hanh's insistence that we do so, and thereby "return to ourselves" is the real value of his work, particularly for those of us prone to angst, or it's less sexy name, anxiety, his work can improve our lives.
Recommended to those of any spirituality.
I find this book to be greatly inspiring. As someone who has worked for peace much of my adult life and now feels anger and disappointment at a world that is not at peace, it has great meaning for me. I suggest that you not only read it, but also keep it with you throughout the day so that you can be continually inspired by it.
TNN's writing style is simple and clear. His humble and caring nature shines through his writing. The ideas are simple and I imagine that were I to apply them they would be quite powerful. That said, all the ideas would be quite useful if applied to our daily lives.
This is not a book for someone looking for deep insights in spirituality (like those of Krishnamurti, Nisargadatta and others) or for any complexity in structure. Nevertheless, his ideas are deep despite their simplicity and are good reminders that can help make anyone's life richer and increase our appreciation for the small things. An approach that reminded me of St. Theresa of Avila (the Saint of small things), in which even eating a tangerine can be spiritualized and thus appreciated greatly...