Leading spiritual teacher warns that if people cannot save themselves from their own suffering, how can they be expected to worry about the plight of Mother Eart
Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh, one of the world's leading spiritual teachers, is a man at great peace even as he predicts the possible collapse of civilisation within 100 years as a result of runaway climate change.
The 86-year-old Vietnamese monk, who has hundreds of thousands of followers around the world, believes the reason most people are not responding to the threat of global warming, despite overwhelming scientific evidence, is that they are unable to save themselves from their own personal suffering, never mind worry about the plight of Mother Earth.
Thay, as he is known, says it is possible to be at peace if you pierce through our false reality, which is based on the idea of life and death, to touch the ultimate dimension in Buddhist thinking, in which energy cannot be created or destroyed.
By recognising the inter-connectedness of all life, we can move beyond the idea that we are separate selves and expand our compassion and love in such a way that we take action to protect the Earth.
Equal parts breath is also called Sama Vritti in Sanskrit and yoga practice, which translates to square breathing (equal on all sides, with four sides). To practice: Inhale for three counts and feel energized and rejuvenated by the breath, like spring.Hold for three counts at the top, reveling in the pregnant pause of summer.Exhale for three counts, as you let go like autumn leaves falling to the ground.And hold for three counts on empty, feeling the stillness of winter. Do at least five rounds of this but more if you need to, in a quiet space where you can steal 10 minutes away to yourself.
”Breathing in, I know I am breathing in. Breathing out, I know I am breathing out." After saying these sentences, we can abbreviate them by saying "In" as we breathe in, and "Out" as we breathe out. We don't try to control our breathing. Whether our in-breath is long or short, deep or shallow, we just breathe naturally and shine the light of mindfulness on it.