Zen and the Art of Saving the Planet, by Thich Nhat Hanh

The way out is in. Mindfulness and the radical insights of Zen meditation can give us the strength and clarity we need to help create a regenerative world in which all life is respected.

When you wake up and you see that the Earth is not just the environment, the Earth is us, you touch the nature of interbeing.
And at that moment you can have real communication with the Earth... We have to wake up together. And if we wake up together, then we have a chance.
Our way of living our life and planning our future has led us into this situation. And now we need to look deeply to find a way out, not only as individuals, but as a collective, a species."
~Thich Nhat Hanh

Filled with Thich Nhat Hanh's inspiring meditations, Zen stories and experiences from his own activism, as well as commentary from Sister True Dedication, one of his students, Zen and the Art of Saving the Planet shows us a new way of seeing and living that can bring healing and harmony to ourselves, our relationships, and the Earth.

Learn about "engaged Buddhism," and how to encompass both the spiritual and the material aspects of your being, to align your thoughts and actions with the highest principles while not losing sight of everyday life. At this moment, collectively we face a potent intersection of circumstances: ecological destruction, rising inequality, and the lasting impacts of a devastating pandemic. To face these challenges, we need to find ways to strengthen our clarity, compassion, and courage to act.

Beloved Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh is blazingly clear: there's one thing we all have the power to change, which can make all the difference, and that is our mind. Our way of looking, seeing, and thinking determines every choice we make, the everyday actions we take or avoid, how we relate to those we love or oppose, and how we react in a crisis. Mindfulness and the radical insights of Zen meditation can give us the strength and clarity we need to help create a regenerative world in which all life is respected.

Excerpt ~ Waking Up

"To wake up first of all is to wake up to the beauty of the Earth. You wake up to the fact that you have a body and that your body is made up of the Earth and sun and stars. You wake up to the fact that the sky is beautiful and that our planet is a jewel of the cosmos. You have an opportunity to be a child of the Earth and to make steps on this extraordinary planet.

Second, to wake up means to wake up to the suffering in the world. You wake up to the fact that the Earth is in danger and living species are in danger. You want to find ways to bring relief, healing, and transformation. This requires a tremendous source of energy. If you have a strong desire in you, a mind of love, that is the kind of energy that will help you to do these two things.

If you see the suffering in the world but you haven't changed your way of living yet, it means the awakening isn't strong enough. You haven't really woken up. In Zen, sometimes a teacher will shout, or hit you, so you can wake up--they'll do whatever it takes. The Zen master's shout is like a crash of spring thunder. It wakes you up and, with the rains that follow, grasses and flowers will bloom."

~from Zen and the Art of Saving the Planet

Meet the Creators

Thich Nhat Hanh, known to his disciples as "Thay" or teacher. Thay is a world-renowned Buddhist Zen master, poet, author, scholar, and activist for social change, who was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He is the author of many bestselling books, including the classics Peace Is Every Step and The Art of Living.

Through his books and retreats at the monasteries he has founded in the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Australia, he has become a pre-eminent figure in contemporary Buddhism, offering teachings that are both deeply rooted in ancient wisdom and accessible to all.

Sister True Dedication is a former journalist and monastic Dharma Teacher ordained by Thich Nhat Hanh.

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