Thoughts on Engaged Buddhism

Here are a few quotes from Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh containing his thoughts on engaged Buddhism. It was Thay, as he is affectionately called by his followers, who coined the term, “engaged Buddhism” in 1954.

Now, it is more important than ever before for us to take action to do what we can to reduce global warming, climate change and the destruction of the ecosystem. Many diverse groups are forming and coming together to discuss what can be done.

“We have to begin with ourselves, from the grassroots. The School of Youth for Social Service was founded on the spirit that we don’t need to wait for the government.”

“The Order of Interbeing was born as a spiritual resistance movement.”

“Engaged Buddhism is the kind of wisdom that responds to anything that happens in the here and the now — global warming, climate change, the destruction of the ecosystem, the lack of communication, war, conflict, suicide, divorce. As a mindfulness practitioner, we have to be aware of what is going on in our body, our feelings, our emotions, and our environment. That is Engaged Buddhism. Engaged Buddhism is the kind of Buddhism that responds to what is happening in the here and the now. “

Thich Nhat Hanh from the  Dharma Talk: History of Engaged Buddhism, Hanoi, Vietnam – May 6 -7, 2008

Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh in Plum Village in 2000, Photo by Jerome Freedman

Now, Buddhists all over the world are gathering together to see what we can do to be Earth Holders and caretakers of Mother Earth. One of the major efforts is being spearheaded by the Buddhist Climate Action Network (BCAN). Other Buddhist organizations include Ecological Buddhism, One Earth Sangha, and Earth Holding. Then three is also

What are your thoughts on Engaged Buddhism? Do you have any interest in joining our efforts? This is important for our children and our grandchildren.

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