Quotes from No Death, No Fear by Thich Nhat Hanh

Quotes from No Death, No Fear by Thich Nhat Hanh

Quotes from No Death, No Fear by Thich Nhat Hanh

We read this book for our book group and we had a good discussion about it. I am not a Buddhist, and have read things I like better than No Death, No Fear by this author. Even so, I feel there are threads worthy of consideration from every faith tradition, even though the language and word definitions may vary. Here are the bits from this book that I flagged to share with you:

  • “Like a match turning into a flame, when conditions are sufficient, you manifest yourself.”
  • “The Buddha has a very different understanding of our existence. It is the understanding that birth and death are notions. They are not real. The fact that we think they are true makes a powerful illusion that causes our suffering. When we understand that we cannot be destroyed, we are liberated from fear. It is a great relief. We can enjoy life and appreciate it in a new way.”
  • “Reality is free from all concepts and ideas.”
  • “The word ‘nirvana’ literally means ‘the extinction of all concepts’- freedom from all ideas and notions.”
  • “If you get caught in one idea and consider it ‘the truth,’ then you miss the chance to know the truth. Even if the truth comes in person and knocks at your door, you will refuse to open your mind.”
  • “Buddhist teachings guide us to look deeply and develop our understanding and compassion. They are not doctrines to fight, kill, or die for.”
  • “In Zen we like to ask the question, ‘What did your face look like before your grandmother was born?'”
  • “What we carry with us determines in which dimension we dwell. If you carry a lot of sorrow, fear, and craving with you, then whenever you go you will always touch the world of suffering and hell. If you carry with you compassion, understanding, and freedom, then wherever you go you will touch the ultimate dimension, the kingdom of God.”
  • “Have not one day when you do not walk in the kingdom of God. If you can do this, your life will become an imspiration to many people.”
  • “The practice of resurrection should be taken up by each of us.When we practice it with success we will also help other people around us. This is the true practice of being alive. Whatever we do in our daily practice– walking, sitting, eating, or sweeping the floor– the purpose of all these things is to help us become alive again. Be alive in every moment, and by waking up your self, you will wake up the world.”
  • “We can only accept teachings we have put into practice with our own awakened understanding and that we can see with our own experience to be true.”
  • “When I drink it, oolong tea is going into me. If I put in more hot water, making a second pot of tea, the tea from those leaves continues to go into me. After I have poured out all the tea, what will be left in the pot is just the spent tea leaves. The leaves that remain are only a very small part of the tea. The tea that goes into me is a much bigger part of the tea. It is the richest part. We are the same; our essence has gone into our children, our friends, and the entire universe. We have to find ourselves in those directions and not in the spent tea leaves.”
  • Meditation to try: breathe in, thinking: “I have arrived;” breathe out, thinking, “I am home.” Repeat until at peace.


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1 Comment

  1. Sue+Krevitt 7 months ago

    Death? Overcome for our Example by
    The Great Teacher, Christ Jesus.

    But to neglect or abuse the human body in the present awareness of “no death” is not to affirm this, but to deny it. Wrong path!

    Thank you for this post, Polly. Makes me remember to love Life! Fear not Its opposite!

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