* From 21:11
People may be used to distinguish between contemplation and action. But I think in Buddhism, these two things can not be separated. To meditate is to be aware of what is going on, not only in your body, your feeling, your perceptions, but in the world. Because the world is object of your mind. And if you know what is going on, how can you avoid acting in order to change the situation to make the situation better.
For instance, if I sit a meditating in my temple, and if around me people cry, suffer a lot because of the bombing, just like the situation of Vietnam just a twelve years ago, you understand the suffering. That is why you have to go out, to get out of the temple in order to come to the people who are suffering, in order to help. And we have been doing that in Vietnam. I mean the Buddhists try to live in awareness, meditating why you act in order to help your own people in the situation of suffering. Therefore, that kind of Buddhism, that is called 'Engaged Buddhism'. It's worth very real during the war. And since the people continue to suffer, it continues to be real in nowadays.
* From 35:55
The first function of conscious breathing is to go back to the present moment to cut through all thinking and to cut through all forgetfulness. The past, the future constitutes prison and continues to tear us apart. (our to empty than earth?) Conscious breathing means you want to get away to be liberated from these forces and go back to the present moment. And then, the other function is to stop the thinking. Sometimes we think too much.
Thinking might not be the best thing because it's only a thought. But being with your breathing, being with the flower, being with the awareness of the sunshine, is more of life than a thought. Therefore, we have to select. We select what we want to be. And for the time being, we want to be our breathing.
The breathing is somehow the medium that connects our body and our mind and make these two separated parts into one again. And therefore, it can realize the oneness of our being. And to practice meditation is to be one to be alive. The capacity of being alive is the capacity of getting in touch with life in the present moment.
Breathing in, I calm my body and mind.
Breathing out, I smile.
Dwelling in the present moment,
I know this is the wonderful moment.
* From 45:04
"Gentlemen, just observe us, smell us and enjoy us. All our characteristics are on display."
* From 48:15
I think the greatest gift you can make to the world is your happiness, your peace inside. I think to be kind with other people to be peaceful, to be in harmony with nature and with other people, I think, is the greatest contribution you can make for peace. I mean just being peace is the greatest contribution for peace. And then, any actions that follow would be very meaningful. But if you don't have peace in yourself, you don't have that smile, that loving-kindness, anything you do will not have a value of a peace making.
Therefore, to practice Buddhist meditation is to engender peace within yourself by way of breathing, of smiling, of sitting, and then the source of a joy of our peace can spring out from that kind of practice. And when you go out and meet the people, you meet with the loving-kindness, acceptance. understanding. And I think that is the base of peace. And if you really understand, you can not avoid that kind of actions, that will help change the world. And therefore, sitting in a meditation hall may be a very drastic peace action if you sit correctly, practice correctly.
A famous French philosoper: "I think, therefore I am."
A horse: "You are what?"
This conversation is funny but very deep. The answer is ego. Ego thinks, therefore ego is. Awareness never thinks. If ego thinks, awareness is not. (I think, therefore I am not.)
This wonderful sound
brings me back
to my true self (home).
The last word of this verse is usually 'home' instead of 'self'. But Thay said 'self' in this video. So, it is clear that 'true home' means 'true self'. And 'true self' is equal to 'non-separate self', 'awareness', 'the whole cosmos', or 'the Dharma body (Dharmakaya)'.
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