Happiness is Made of Non-Happiness by Thich Nhat Hanh

The following is a talk given by Thich Nhat Hanh. I am passionately in love with Thich and his words, although my relationship with him wasn’t love at first sight.

Thich’s delivery is slow, …and soft, …and methodical. For the first year of our relationship, I found myself frustrated (almost even angry) with him because I wanted to consume his words at my pace. I even went so far as to increase the speed of his audio recordings; however, I wasn’t pleased with the resulting female-like, higher pitched voice.

What took me a year to realize and understand is that the pace and softness of Thich’s talks is just as important to his message as the words he says.

I’m only human, and still get frustrated occasionally with Thich; however, being forced to overcome my frustration, and settle into his pace, has become one of the many, many reasons that I love him. I suggest that you do your best to receive his message. And if you do, I promise that you will fall in love with him too.

Here is a tip: I find it really helpful to listen to him while walking or jogging.

The following is an audio recording of a talk that he recently gave from his monastery in France called Plum Village. The talk is very long, so I suggest just listening to as much as you like. You can listen to many more of his talks on the Thich Nhat Hanh Blog, or find out more about him on his website, Plum Village.

Click the triangle to listen to Thich’s talk:
[audio http://tnhaudio.org/audio/2011/2011-07-22.mp3]

If you are really adventurous, the following is a video of the same talk:

One thought on “Happiness is Made of Non-Happiness by Thich Nhat Hanh

  1. Krishnabai

    The video of Thich Nhat Hanh delivering this talk allows the viewer to absorb its most important dimension. Seeing him speak, one can easily perceive that he is formulating his slow, deliberate, carefully articulated thoughts from a deep level of consciousness. He conveys the sense that he is drawing the concepts he presents from an all-knowing higher source of intelligence. His ability to tune into this realm is evidenced by his calm and soothing style which verifies that he is functioning through the profound peace of his Inner Self, absolutely devoid of any sign of an individual, contracted ego-self.

    Further proof of this comes from observing his audience. It is said that when one immerses himself in this higher power, he becomes contagious to everyone and everything around him. As the eye scans the many people gathered to hear Thich speak, there is not a muscle moving on anyone. Throughout the talk,they are sitting totally motionless, drinking in his profound words, and bathing in the powerful positive energy emanating from him..

    Watchig Thich and his audience dwell in this world, the viewer is also elevated into this higher plane of Peace. Thich’s very meaningful message through words has been indelibly imprinted upon the listener’s mind, but that becomes secondary in importance to the overwhelming feeling of peace and quiet that watching Thich and his audience has evoked, This, too, has also been fixed indelibly in the viewer’s mind in a way that will allow him to always draw upon it for strength.

    Thank you for making Thich and his messge readily accessible. Beings like Thich and the words of wisdom that they can give to the world are far too rare.


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