Author: Si Nghiem

Three Mountain Poems

Br. Phap Bieu reflects on three poems by Master Ham Son (Zh. Hanshan)and shares his own experiences of being in the mountains and of the practice.

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The Old Pear Tree

What’s in a pear tree? On a foggy, dark night in the Upper Hamlet, a brother discovers the nature of mind with the help of a beloved old pear tree.

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Armfuls of Poetry, Drops of Sunshine – a poem of Thich Nhat Hanh

Sunshine rides on space and poetry on sunshine.
Poetry gives birth to sunshine, and sunshine to poetry.

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Turning Darkness into Light on a Grand Scale – 10 years of the EIAB

Sr. Chân Đức expresses gratitude for our practice center the European Institute of Applied Buddhism, Germany to celebrate it’s 10 year anniversary. She tell us how Thay and the sangha have turned a place with a dark history into a place of peace and joy.

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Cultivating Compassion and Understanding

When you produce a thought of compassion, of understanding, of forgiveness, you are on the same frequency as the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. You can tune into the energy. When you are capable of pronouncing something in terms of forgiveness, in terms of compassion and understanding, you are in tune with the world of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas.

A Love Letter from Young Novices

We are novice brothers and sisters from France, Germany, Italy, the U.S., Vietnam, the Netherlands and other countries who live in Plum Village, France. We have grown up in Buddhist, Jewish, Catholic, Protestant and other traditions, and now we have found our new spiritual home in the beautiful international Plum Village family.

Froglessness – poem by Thich Nhat Hanh

The first fruition of the practice
is the attainment of froglessness.

Walking Meditation – poem by Thich Nhat Hanh

Take my hand.
We will walk.
We will only walk.
We will enjoy our walk
without thinking of arriving anywhere.

Expressing our Gratitude to Thầy on the Lunar New Year Day

Today we your students, monastic and lay, have gathered on the first day of the Lunar New Year to celebrate our togetherness and to express our gratitude to you and all our ancestral teachers. We are happy that you are being embraced by the fourfold community there in Plum Village Thailand. As we breathe mindfully, we also know that you are here with us as well.

90 Days at Plum Village – reflections from lay practitioners

Why would you spend a full 90 days in a mindfulness practice centre during winter, living with many monastic and lay sisters? How did you make it possible to have that time from your “real” life? What were the challenges? How have you changed? Our long-term friends at the New Hamlet candidly responded to these questions.

Shedding my hair completely, I vow to transform all my afflictions

On December 14 at 9:30 in the morning, nine young men and women entered the community of monks and nuns at Plum Village France, receiving the Ten Novice Precepts. At the same time in Thailand, 22 novices were also “born” at the Thai International Practice Centre.

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New Year Prayer to Mother Earth and All Our Ancestors

The Plum Village fourfold Sangha offered this New Year Prayer at the midnight ceremony to enter 2018.

Our True Home

Christmas is always an opportunity for us to meditate on the topic of home, our true home. Have I got a true home? A true home is a place where you feel comfortable and at ease. You don’t want to go anywhere else anymore. You feel so at home, so at ease. Have you found such a place?

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Our Environment

Sister Annabel (Sister Chan Duc) It is a lovely day in May in EIAB, Waldbroel. How lucky we are to have eyes that can enjoy the wonderful colours and forms of spring and two good legs to take us out into the woods and pastures and the time to enjoy the beauties of nature.  We

Mother, Hear Our Call

Sister Chân Mai Nghiêm Mother, hear our call, Here we stand. No matter where we stand, We are your children. And we stand for the Truth of our Oneness. Drawing by Sister Chân Hài Nghiêm May we stand in the steadiness of your Love To protect you, Mother, On your lap, we stand To protect

Two Families, One Heart:
 A Western Bhikshu Comes Home

Br. Chân Trời Phạm Hạnh I still remember vividly my community as a young boy. We had to go up the stairs and into a big hall with stained glass windows. It was full of older and younger brothers and sisters, or uncles and aunts, as we called them as children. As a little boy,

Alms Round – The Practice of Love, Humility, and Gratitude

Br. Chân Trời Nguyện Lực “The mind can go in a thousand directions, but on this beautiful path, I walk in peace. With each step, a gentle breeze blows. 
With each step, a flower blooms.”  Alms round is a beautiful practice that I like very much. Of all Plum Village centers around the world, only

Healing the Past, Transforming the Future

Br. Chân Trời Đức An Dear respected Thay, dear sisters & brothers, dear friends, My name is Chan Troi Duc An. I am a baby novice monk in the Plum Tree family. We ordained on December 14th in France, and some on the 15th in Thailand. I was born in France in 1988 and grew

I Am in Love with Mother Earth

“Every morning in winter when I wake up, I put on some warm clothes and go out to take a walk around the Upper Hamlet. It is usually still dark outside, and I walk gently, in touch with the nature all around me, the sky, the moon, and the stars. One time, after walking, I

As if We Had Met Before – Remember to Look for Thay

Thầy has arrived in Thailand. That in itself brought quite a shock for countless people. What needed to be done was realized quickly. I could feel each brother and sister’s heart in anticipation of seeing Thầy. Hearing that Thầy would come, Venerable Giác Viên, currently receiving treatment in Vietnam, has arranged to come and visit Thầy.

As if We Had Met Before – Singing with Thay

We have many funny stories during the time of attending Thầy. Once, while aiding Thầy to walk, after a few steps he pointed to his feet. My brother and I were dumbfounded to see that we had put the right shoe on Thầy’s left foot and vice versa.

As if We Had Met Before – Thay’s Childhood Rain

“What event in this year was the most meaningful for me?” If you had asked me this question, without hesitation I would have replied that it was the opportunity to attend Thầy. In this process I have found myself and I have also found you.

Please be Abbess for Thay

Sr. Chân Hội Nghiêm     A few years ago, our former Abbess of the Dharma Nectar Temple, Lower Hamlet wished to rest and to find someone to continue her work. She asked me, but I did not accept. Anything but to shoulder this responsibility. I did not want everyone to have expectations of me.

Kitchen as a Meditation Hall

Sr. Chân Diệu Nghiêm (Sr. Jina) I would like to share an experience I’ve had in a Winter Retreat that has inspired me until today. This was in the early times of Plum Village, maybe in Winter 1991. Thay used to teach in the dining hall in the Lower Hamlet. The old dining hall. Some