Even Children Know This!

These words of wisdom come from Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay) from his book, Being Peace. Even children know this!

Even Children Know This!Children understand very well that in each woman, in each man, in each child, there is capacity of waking up, of understanding, and of loving. Many children have told me that they cannot show me anyone who does not have this capacity. Some people allow it to develop, and some do not, but everyone has it. This capacity of waking up, of being aware of what is going on in your feelings, in your body, in your perceptions, in the world, is called Buddha nature, the capacity of understanding and loving. Smiling is very important. If we are not able to smile, then the world will not have peace. It is not by going out for a demonstration against nuclear missiles that we can bring about peace. It is with our capacity of smiling, breathing, and being peace that we can make peace.

As my teacher since 1985, I have always admired the way Thay treats the children when they attend his dharma talks and days of mindfulness in Plum Village and around the world. When he offers question and answer days, the children always go first. For example, on August 9, 2012, one small child asked, “Why did you become a monk?”

As for smiling, Thay is always encouraging us to do “mouth yoga” and keep a slight smile on our faces at all times.

What do you think about the capacity of children to develop understanding and love? Please share.

Being Peace
by Thich Nhat Hanh
Introduction by Jack Kornfield

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