After Pope John Paul and the Dalai Lama, Zen Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh is the best-known world spiritual leader. In Creating True Peace, he presents his teachings on peace, nonviolence, and peacemaking. Applying Buddhist precepts, this Vietnamese monk reformulates and extends the lessons articulated in his bestselling Anger. The ecumenical message and accessible writing style make this, like all his works, uncommonly readable.
In narrating Nhat Hanh's spiritual guide, York did not have an easy task. The text is an accessible, solid introduction to Buddhist principles. Since Nhat Hanh is committed to what he calls "engaged Buddhism," he takes basic Buddhist practices (mindful breathing and walking meditation) and shows how they can transform not only a soul, but a family and even a nation. But can a narrator find drama in a series of meditation instructions? York does. While there is very serious drama in the text at times-Nhat Hanh was a young monk in Vietnam in the 1950s and '60s and brought his faith and his work with refugees right up to the front lines-this is a book of reflections, and York manages to find the poignancy in these reflections. Indeed, York's reading stays so close to the spirit of the text that listeners can practically hear the inflection of the monk himself. His voice is soothing, yet never hypnotic-a great match for a work that urges its listeners to wake up to their true natures. Simultaneous release with the Free Press hardcover (Forecasts, July 14). (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
This Vietnamese-born Buddhist monk and leader of the Paris Peace Talks' Buddhist delegation during the Vietnam War must be one of the most revered and popular representatives of the Zen Buddhist tradition today, as well as one of the most effective exponents of "engaged Buddhism" in life and in print. Thich Nhat Hanh has already written several much-read and much-praised books, including Anger and Peace Is Every Step. This latest volume addresses the questions of world peace directly, through another-but still needed-explanation of the Buddhist Noble Truths and of the meaning of true compassion. "The secret of creating peace," he says, "is that when you listen to another person you have only one purpose: to offer him an opportunity to empty his heart." Too often, he says, negotiation arises out of fear instead of "deep listening" and "loving speech." Whatever one's religious or political commitments, the author's advice seems sound, and his counsel comes from inner experience. Highly recommended. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.