Now Offering Digital!

Now Offering Digital!

At long last, we are very excited to now offer you a digital subscription!

At a significantly lower price of $18 for a one-year subscription (3 issues), we aspire to support the practice of many more of you in our community.

We also now offer a combined digital + print subscription for $42 for a one-year subscription (3 issues), as well as single digital issues for $6 each.

(And of course, we will continue to offer our print-only subscription.)

Have a current print subscription that you'd like to switch to digital? We can do that, too!

For more info, please visit our subscription page!

2017 Lunar New Year “Parallel Verses”


We are very happy to announce the new Plum Village practice phrases to celebrate the upcoming Lunar New Year of the Rooster!

 The practice phrases are a traditional parallel verse (or “couplet”) for the Lunar New Year (“Tết”), which will soon be celebrated in Plum Village practice centers. This Saturday,  January 28th, 2016 is New Year’s day.

 The couplet can be combined with our breathing. For example, we can contemplate “Awakening the Source of Understanding” as we breathe in, and contemplate “Opening the Path of Love” as we breathe out. These words are not a declaration, but a living aspiration we wish to nurture.

 In Plum Village practice centers all around the world, we print out these calligraphies (keeping the diamond form), paste them onto colored card, and pin them up around the dining halls, meditation halls and living quarters in preparation to celebrate the Lunar New Year. We hang them (with the help of a little cotton thread) from early-blossoming Japonica and Plum branches that we bring in to brighten our rooms.

Ancient Tradition, Creatively Renewed

Poetic couplets for New Year are an ancient tradition in the East, especially in Vietnam and China. Often on red paper, they are pasted on door-frames, lintels, and even farm tools to bring good luck for the year to come. Calligraphies by spiritual masters are especially popular. The traditional couplet written in Chinese characters is a masterful art – a kind of profound and concise “written form of counterpoint”.

Thay has established a tradition, on the eve of the Lunar New Year, of offering the sangha a simple poetic couplet in calligraphy that can inspire and nurture our mindfulness practice. Thay’s innovation has been to offer the couplet in English, French and Vietnamese (rather than in Chinese characters). The Plum Village Community is very happy to continue this beautiful tradition.

Join Us in this Practice

You can print out and post the couplets on your fridge, doors or near light switches as an auspicious reminder to be mindful of their message, and renew ourselves by applying them into our life. You can get creative with how and where to post and practice the phrases. You could post them on the doorframe as you step out to face your day, or even on the bathroom mirror.

In Plum Village, we always post the two complementary diamonds as a pair, near each other (above, below, beside – it doesn’t matter which) – typically on doors, windows or walls.

We hope this brand new couplet will bring you and your loved ones inspiration and nourishment in the New Year to come.

Click on the following to download a one-page PDF of the practice phrases. Feel free to print them on colored paper.

English verses
Tiếng Việt

Don't miss out on our Winter/Spring issue #74!

  • Thich Nhat Hanh teaches about nirvana – "the extinction of all the categories that you try to put everything in" – and how we can extinguish our confusion, worries, and anxieties and step into freedom.
  • Bhikkhu Bodhi talks about the role of mindfulness in social activism and in challenging injustice.
  • Cheri Maples shares about her experience of being a police officer, how mindfulness changed her work, and ways to increase compassion in the criminal justice system.
  • Sister Annabel Laity offers a teaching on the Three Dharma Seals – impermanence, no self, and nirvana – and gives real-life examples to help us grasp the concepts.
  • Long-term practitioners give insights from their joyful encounters with Thay in Plum Village in 2016.
  • Two teens write about their moments of transformation at retreats.

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Deer Park Monastery's Prayer for a Happy, Peaceful and Free New Year

Deer Park Monastery's Prayer for a Happy, Peaceful and Free New Year

New Year Prayer to Mother Earth and All Our Ancestors

Dear Beloved Thay, Dear Beloved Ancestors, Dear Beloved Mother Earth,

We have gathered as a fourfold sangha in this solemn moment of the New Year to express our gratitude and aspiration as a spiritual family, and to begin anew. We know that you, our ancestors, are present in this very moment, and that you are always there for us to take refuge in. As we touch the earth tonight we feel deeply connected to all of you, and to our dear Mother Earth: our beautiful blue planet, the Great Refreshing Bodhisattva – fragrant and cool, kind and inclusive, accepting us all. Mother Earth, we are all your children and, despite our many mistakes and shortcomings, every time we come home to you, you are ready to open your arms and embrace us...

Message from Sr. Chan Khong: The Environmental and Human Tragedy in Vietnam

Message from Sr. Chan Khong: The Environmental and Human Tragedy in Vietnam

In early April, there was a serious toxic spill from a chemical plant that destroyed the marine ecosystem in central Vietnam. Our Respected Sister Chan Khong, with the support of the Earth Holders Sangha, compassionately shows us the way to support the people of this area who have lost their livelihood, food, and ecosystem.