By Gary Gach.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia -- VEN. THICH Nhat Hanh is one of the most beloved living spiritual leaders of our time - known to his followers as just Thây (pronounced “tye”, Vietnamese for “teacher”). The World Buddhist Conference welcomed him to the 2010 proceedings by standing up as one body. He was calmly radiant in his happiness to be there.
Following a dedicatory recitation of vows, several dozen of his monks and nuns, from his root sangha in Plum Village, France, treated us to a massive, lilting, heartfelt choral chant to Avalokiteshvara, Bodhisattva of Compassion. Then, after a truly sterling introduction by Datuk Dr Victor Wee, Malaysian Tourism Chairman and President of Buddhist Gem Fellowship, Thây took to the platform.
Thây began in his quiet voice by declaring the present moment as a happy moment. He smiled as he then recalled that when he was ordained at 16 as a novice monk, he was taught how to bow to the Buddha. He said: “One verse in classical Chinese which I had to memorize went: ‘The One who bows and the one who is bowed to, both of them are, by their nature, empty.’ That is why communication can be very deep.”
After elaborating on this a bit, he went on to typify our century’s thinking as still dualistic: “We believe there is a consciousness inside, reaching out to understand the world outside.” From this mis-taken view, stems separation: discrimination, anger, hate, violence, and war - within ourselves and within the world. That is why we need to go in the direction of Right Thinking, which is the direction of understanding and compassion.
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About Thich Nhat
Causes Thich Nhat Hanh Supports
Peace, Mindful Living