Great Thich Nhat Hanh Quotes on Mindfulness, Peace, Love, and Happiness

  1. Smile, breathe and go slowly.
  2. Our own life has to be our message.
  3. My actions are my only true belongings.
  4. Peace in ourselves, peace in the world.
  5. Because you are alive, everything is possible.
  6. To be loved means to be recognized as existing.
  7. Walk as if you are kissing the Earth with your feet.
  8. We are here to awaken from the illusion of our separateness.
  9. You must love in such a way that the person you love feels free.
  10. Many people are alive but don’t touch the miracle of being alive.
  11. May our heart’s garden of awakening bloom with hundreds of flowers.
  12. Working for peace in the future is to work for peace in the present moment.
  13. Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.
  14. I promise myself that I will enjoy every minute of the day that is given me to live.
  15. Mindfulness helps you to touch the wonders of life for self-nourishment and healing.
  16. Every thought you produce, anything you say, any action you do, it bears your signature.
  17. The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.
  18. For things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them.
  19. If you love someone but rarely make yourself available to him or her, which is not true love.
  20. The amount of happiness that you have depends on the amount of freedom you have in your heart.
  21. The practice of peace and reconciliation is one of the most vital and artistic of human actions.
  22. Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.
  23. To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.
  24. When you love someone, the best thing you can offer is your presence. How can you love if you are not there?
  25. Breathing in, I calm body and mind. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment I know this is the only moment.
  26. Many people think excitement is happiness. But when you are excited you are not peaceful. True happiness is based on peace.
  27. People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar.
  28. The seed of suffering in you may be strong, but don’t wait until you have no more suffering before allowing yourself to be happy.
  29. People suffer because they are caught in their views. As soon as we release those views, we are free and we don’t suffer anymore.
  30. Life is available only in the present. That is why we should walk in such a way that every step can bring us to the here and the now.
  31. Mindfulness helps you go home to the present. And every time you go there and recognize a condition of happiness that you have, happiness comes.
  32. Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the world earth revolves – slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future.
  33. The mind can go in a thousand directions, but on this beautiful path, I walk in peace. With each step, the wind blows. With each step, a flower blooms.
  34. We have to continue to learn. We have to be open. And we have to be ready to release our knowledge in order to come to a higher understanding of reality.
  35. Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today.
  36. Waking up this morning, I smile. Twenty-four brand new hours are before me. I vow to live fully in each moment and to look at all beings with eyes of compassion.
  37. Without fear, we are able to see more clearly our connections to others. Without fear, we have more room for understanding and compassion. Without fear, we are truly free.
  38. When we are mindful, deeply in touch with the present moment, our understanding of what is going on deepens, and we begin to be filled with acceptance, joy, peace and love.
  39. Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything – anger, anxiety, or possessions – we cannot be free.
  40. The source of love is deep in us and we can help others realize a lot of happiness. One word, one action, one thought can reduce another person’s suffering and bring that person joy.
  41. Life can be found only in the present moment. The past is gone, the future is not yet here, and if we do not go back to ourselves in the present moment, we cannot be in touch with life.
  42. Every day we do things, we are things that have to do with peace. If we are aware of our life, our way of looking at things, we will know how to make peace right in the moment, we are alive.
  43. Freedom is not given to us by anyone; we have to cultivate it ourselves. It is a daily practice. No one can prevent you from being aware of each step you take or each breath in and breath out.
  44. When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over. He does not need punishment; he needs help. That’s the message he is sending.
  45. In order to rally people, governments need enemies. They want us to be afraid, to hate, so we will rally behind them. And if they do not have a real enemy, they will invent one in order to mobilize us.
  46. Suffering is not enough. Life is both dreadful and wonderful. How can I smile when I am filled with so much sorrow? It is natural – you need to smile to your sorrow because you are more than your sorrow.
  47. It is possible to live happily in the here and now. So many conditions of happiness are available —more than enough for you to be happy right now. You don’t have to run into the future in order to get more.
  48. Enlightenment is always there. Small enlightenment will bring great enlightenment. If you breathe in and are aware that you are alive —that you can touch the miracle of being alive —then that is a kind of enlightenment.
  49. By eating meat we share the responsibility of climate change, the destruction of our forests, and the poisoning of our air and water. The simple act of becoming a vegetarian will make a difference in the health of our planet.
  50. Every morning, when we wake up, we have twenty-four brand-new hours to live. What a precious gift! We have the capacity to live in a way that these twenty-four hours will bring peace, joy, and happiness to ourselves and others.
  51. You who are journalists, writers, citizens, you have the right and duty to say to those you have elected that they must practice mindfulness, calm and deep listening, and loving speech. This is universal thing, taught by all religions.
  52. You can practice deep listening in order to relieve the suffering in us, and in the other person. That kind of listening is described as compassionate listening. You listen only for the purpose of relieving suffering in the other person.
  53. We must also be careful to avoid ingesting toxins in the form of violent TV programs, video games, movies, magazines, and books. When we watch that kind of violence, we water our own negative seeds, or tendencies, and eventually we will think and act out of those seeds.
  54. This is a very important practice. Live your daily life in a way that you never lose yourself. When you are carried away with your worries, fears, cravings, anger, and desire, you run away from yourself and you lose yourself. The practice is always to go back to oneself.
  55. People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the black, curious eyes of a child — our own two eyes. All is a miracle.

thich-nhat-hanhThich Nhat Hanh (born as Nguyen Xuan Bao on October 11, 1926) is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, teacher, author, poet and peace activist. He lives in Plum Village in the Dordogne region in the south of France, travelling internationally to give retreats and talks. He coined the term “Engaged Buddhism” in his book Vietnam: Lotus in a Sea of Fire. A long-term exile, he was given permission to make his first return trip to Vietnam in 2005.

As of 2016, Thich Nhat Hanh has published more than 100 books, including more than 40 in English. He is active in the peace movement, promoting nonviolent solutions to conflict and he also refrains from animal product consumption as a means of nonviolence towards non-human animals. (from Wikipedia)

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