Sister Thuận Nghiêm (Sister Harmony) takes us along her life-long journey of transforming her way of thinking and speaking with the practice. She shares many true stories about the importance of checking our perceptions and speaking more humbly and lovingly.
The impact of our speech is immediate and wide. The quality of our relationships and of our inner peace depend a great deal on our way of speaking. This is also true of peace in the world. “We can start a war with words.”
Speaking, as well as listening, is an art. Thanks to our daily practice and the support of our community, we can learn to speak in a completely different way. Our words don’t need to come from a place of hurt and blindly follow our habit energies anymore. They can become an expression of our mindfulness and love, inspiring and touching the hearts of many people.
Reflection Questions (approved by Sr. Thuan Nghiem)
1. Words that inspire confidence, joy, hope
During the day, note three occasions when your words inspired confidence, joy, or hope. How did you feel afterwards? What were the conditions that allowed you to speak lovingly?
2. Shedding leaves
As we observe the dancing Autumn leaves around us, what are the leaves we can shed in our life to lighten our load? Perhaps certain possessions, ideas, projects, habits…?
3. A day of “Forget-you-not”
When you come together with sangha friends for an Evening or a Day of Mindfulness, how do you help each other to cultivate a concentrated energy of mindfulness, rather than a dispersed energy of a “flea market”?
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