The Buddha once said that the problem of life and death is itself the problem of mindfulness. Whether or not one is alive depends on whether one is mindful.
In peace-serving communities, we must follow the same principle. Don't worry if those around you aren't doing their best. Just worry about how to make yourself worthy. Doing your best is the surest way to remind those around you to do their best. But to be worthy requires the continuing practice of mindfulness. That is a certainty. Only by practicing mindfulness will we not lose ourselves but acquire a bright joy and peace. Only by practicing mindfulness will we be able to look at everyone else with the open mind and eyes of love.
I thought about the garden tended by a monk living in mindfulness. His flowers are always fresh and green, nourished by the peace and joy which flow from his mindfulness. One of the ancients said,
When a great Master is born, the water in the rivers turns clearer and the plants grow greener.
We ought to listen to music or sit and practice breathing at the beginning of every meeting or discussion.
Only if we are mindful, we are really alive. That's why Thay advises us to be mindful through music or sitting (mindful breathing) at the beginning of the session. When we are mindful, we can touch the wonders of life and recognize what is going on inside and around us. And we can attain insight by deep looking (concentration).
Thích Nhất Hạnh