One of the best known and most respected Zen masters in the world today, poet, and peace and human rights activist, Thich Nhat Hanh (called Thây by his students) has led an extraordinary life. Born in central Vietnam in 1926 he joined the monkshood at the age of sixteen. The Vietnam War confronted the monasteries with the question of whether to adhere to the contemplative life and remain meditating in the monasteries, or to help the villagers suffering under bombings and other devastation of the war. Nhat Hanh was one of those who chose to do both, helping to found the "engaged Buddhism" movement. His life has since been dedicated to the work of inner transformation for the benefit of individuals and society.
The store always has at least 5 or 6 of Thich Nhat Hanh's many many books available, and he is a personal favourite of mine. His simple and straight forward explanation of mindful techniques are so accessible and make so much sense, that even those sceptical of the practice of meditation will find themselves becoming more mindful.
Considered his seminal work, Peace is Every Step is just such a book- full of simple, easy techniques to slow yourself down and become more centred. But Thich Nhat Hanh's oeuvre doesn't stop there, his books encompass the importance of social action (Good Citizen), ecumenism (Living Buddha, Living Christ), dealing with negative emotions (Fear; Anger), teaching children about mindfulness techniques (Planting a Seed) and the slow food movement (Savor).
Stop by the store and take a glance at the top shelf of our Buddhism section- chances are it will be populated largely by books by Thich Nhat Hanh. Whether you're going through a hard time and need some solace, or you have always been curious about meditation but weren't sure where to start, we'll have something by this lovely man to suit you needs.
To learn more about Thich Nhat Hanh, visit http://new.plumvillage.org/