piece together the path

The more you try to escape the present moment, your body numbs
Stop the cycle of running, come back to the here and now
Feel your body, feel your breath
You are here

The way you carry your body will carry your mind
Develop concentration, become one with your breath
Establish stillness within yourself
Your anchors are the in- and out-breath
When you understand your own pattern
Use your attention to care for your pain or unhealthy habits
Identify where the pain is coming from, let go in order to move forward
When you are attached, there is no space for experience

Study the story of your ancestors
What were the key moments in your parents life?
It is helpful to understand the experiences that shaped them
And therefore shaped you
Piece together the path

When you walk fast, who is it who’s walking fast?
You are a multitude, you remember

Revise and elaborate teachings so your practice becomes visible
Recognize what is wrong
If you can’t recognize the suffering, you can’t stop the suffering
If the diagnosis is correct, the treatment will work very well
It will be the end of ill-being
And you will walk on the path of well-being

Train every day and you will see gradual progress
Take refuge in those who show you the way of mindfulness
The practice of mindfulness is non-religious
When you have a non-dualistic view, you protect nature

A gatha is a short poem
You can only welcome and receive when you are open
Through maintaining mindfulness, you arrive in each moment in your body
When you take care of yourself, you take care of your beloved ones
With eyes of compassion, you communicate
You wake up and you smile

Plum Village is a buddhist monastic community founded & guided by Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay). We were both greatly inspired & moved by Thay’s teachings. We often read to each other his words to soothe, relax and remember. His translation of reality is simple, accessible, yet rich with deep wisdom, truth and poetry. A language that our hearts readily understood. He would often speak about Plum Village in his books, sharing the benefits of walking meditation or praising his beloved community.

We took part in a 2-week chapter of their yearly Rains Retreat, which offers optimal conditions for contemplation and peace, experienced as a time of healing and slowing down. From the moment we entered the beautiful rustic hamlet nestled amongst vineyards and tree groves, we felt an inner breeze of refreshment and a deep sigh that sounded like coming home.

We highly recommend you to visit their website to learn more and perhaps plan your own visit, www.plumvillage.org

Thich Nhat Hanh
1926 — 2022


The discomfort before stillness dapples the inner light
I desire a calm fluid body
My ghostly mind wanders in despair for stories
Why do I dream a world less colorful then the present moment?
I notice my shallow breath
Present moment, where are you?
I pause and invite the wind in my palms