Peaceful Action, Open Heart shines 60 years of study and practice upon one of the crowning scriptures of the path of the Buddha, and is destined to be known as one of the most significant writings by Thich Nhat Hanh.
The Lotus Sutra is one of the most revered of Mahayana sacred texts and is sometimes called "the king of sutras." Despite this fact, there are very few commentaries in English available today. Thich Nhat Hanh explores the Sutra’s main theme-- that everyone has the capacity to become a Buddha, and that Buddha-nature is inherent in everything--but he also uniquely emphasizes the sutra’s insight that Buddha-nature is the basis for peaceful action. Since we all will one day become a Buddha, he says, we can use mindfulness practices right now to understand and find solutions to current world challenges. In his interpretation of the sutra, he suggests that if the practices, views, and insights of the Lotus Sutra would find application not only by individuals but also by nations, it would offer concrete solutions to transform individual suffering and the global challenges facing the world today.
Stamped with his signature depth of vision, lucidity, and clarity, Thich Nhat Hanh’s insights based on the wisdom of the Lotus Sutra invoke a wide range of contemporary topics and concerns, such as the Palestinian-Israeli war, the threat of terrorism, and the degradation of our environment. In proposing radical new ways of finding peaceful solutions to universal, contemporary conflicts, he not only challenges the U.N to change from an organization to a real organism working for peace and harmony in the world, but also encourages all branches of all governments to act as Sangha. In so doing, he demonstrates the practical and direct applicability of this sacred text to today's concerns.
This book has been re-released with a new title, Peaceful Action, Open Heart. The earlier hardcover edition was entitled Opening the Heart of the Cosmos.