Monday, November 28, 2011

Contemplative Monday

The following is Thich Nhat Hanh's response to the question: What can we do to help someone in a difficult situation without getting overwhelmed?

    "When you feel overwhelmed, you're trying too hard. That kind of energy does not help

  the other person and it does not help you. You should not be too eager to help right away.

        There are two things: to be and to do. Don't think too much about to do-----to be is first.

                  To be peace. To be joy. To be happiness. And then to do joy, to do happiness-----

            on the basis of being. So first you have to focus on the practice of being. Being fresh.

                      Being peaceful. Being attentive. Being generous. Being compassionate.

         This is the basic practice. It's like as if the other person is sitting at the foot of a tree.

   The tree does not do anything, but the tree is fresh and alive. When you are like that tree,

sending out waves of freshness, you help to calm down the suffering in the other person.

          Your presence should be pleasant, it should be calm, and you should be there for him 

             or her. That is a lot already.When children like to come and sit close to you, it's not 

            because you have a lot of cookies to give, but because sitting close to you is nice,

 it's refreshing. So sit next to the person who is suffering and try your best to be your best---

    Beach grass in winter.

pleasant, attentive and fresh." 

Taken from an interview by Andrea Miller in the January 2012 edition of the 'Shambhala Sun' magazine.


  1. sounds sensible!!
    comforting doesn't take too much effort if you do it right. People generally don't need much to perk up. Often, just knowing they're not alone is enough strength to face whatever they have to face.

    Have a good week!

  2. A good post with good, positive thoughts and energy to start my day. Its been an emotional few days and what has helped me the most, is the positive energy from others who understand.

  3. Jag uppskattar mycket din blogg.
    Dessa vackra tänkvärda meningar var sända till mig idag.

    I very much appreciate your blog.
    These beautiful thoughtful sentences were sent to me today.
    Thank you!


  4. One of the best non-technical descriptions of boundaries that I've ever seen -- thanks!

  5. How beautiful and it makes such perfect sense.

  6. Wonderful advice!
    I love these beautiful photos of beach grass.

  7. This is a refreshing post, with your lovely photographs and the beautiful teachings together. Thank you, Jim. I wish I had read this a few days ago!

    It's surprising to see the brilliant sunshine and snow on the sand in the same photo. You live in a really beautiful place.

  8. Comforting and wise words coupled with your stunning shots!

  9. Comforting words-just when needed x

  10. I've been using this method on my sister who has been trying to help someone else. Her methods were more intrusive and often rejected. Since my sister has been staying at my house for the last month, her temperment has changed and she is starting to calm herself which in turn is calming her friend.

    Proof positive.

    And the sweet pics help too.

  11. sometimes just being there is better than doing anything or saying anything at all...

  12. Every time I visit you, I find such peacefulness and deep thinking. Thank you.

    I enjoyed your photos too. Love the symbolism and use of depth of field.

    Thanks so much for your kind words over at my blog. You and Ron are a wonderful pair.


Hey, I really like your comments and appreciate the time you took to do so.

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