Thursday, December 15, 2011

Day of Mindfulness December 17, 2011, 10-4:30pm

Dear Friends,

In our Day of Mindfulness, this Saturday December 17 at Riverside Church, room 430-MLK, we will explore ‘non-clinging,’ impermanence and emptiness.  We will begin with stopping, calming and resting through mindfulness of breathing and of the body.  Then, sitting with full body awareness, we will practice what Thay calls active concentration: 
            “In Active Concentration, the mind dwells on whatever is happening in the present moment, even as it changes.
            A Silver Bird flies over the Autumn Lake.
            When it has passed,
            The lake’s surface does not try to hold on to the image of the bird.”

            As the bird flies over the lake, its reflection is lucid.  After it is gone, the lake         reflects the clouds and the sky just   as clearly.  When we practice active concentration, we welcome whatever comes along….We just dwell in the present       moment with all our being.  Whatever comes, comes.  When the object of our         concentration has passed, our mind remains clear, like a calm lake.”

We will enjoy eating together in mindfulness, Dharma sharing, mindful movements and walking, singing, total relaxation and resting.
Chairs and cushions available.  Beginners welcome.  Bring a vegetarian lunch.  Please do not wear fragrances.  Attend the whole Day or any part of the Day.

10-4:30pm: At Riverside Church, Room, at 91 Claremont Avenue in Manhattan, in room 430-MLK [walk past security desk and turn left, walk across lobby to elevators and go to 4th floor.]

Schedule [may change]:
1. 10-10:10 mindful movements
2.  10:10-10:45 Sitting/Walking: breath awareness
3.  10:50-11:15-sitting: whole body/ease
11:20-11:30: walking: whole body/ease

4. 11:40-12:05: Sitting--Active concentration

5.  12:10-12:30  [If staying inside]: Walking meditation/mindful movement

6.  12:35-12:45: silent sitting.

7.   12:50-1:15-Dharma Sharing

OR if going outside for walking meditation
12:20-1pm: outdoor walking: mind is clear blue sky.

Lunch: 1:20-2:00

Total Relaxation: 2:10-2:50

3pm-3:10-walking meditation

3:15-3:45: Sit: active concentration

3:50-4:20: Dharma Sharing.

 Thich Nhat Hanh on meditation practice:

Mindfulness of Breathing

Breathing in, I know I am breathing in.  Breathing out, I know I am breathing out.”
“The object of mindfulness is your in-breath and your out-breath, and nothing else.  Observe the reality of your in-breath all throughout its duration.  Stay at one with your out-breath all the way through”

“You don’t need to make an effort to stop your thinking.  Just by concentrating on your breathing one hundred percent, your thinking will quiet itself.  You don’t need to force yourself to be mindful.  Just enjoy your breathing.”

“A period of sitting meditation is time worth living.  Don’t interfere with your breathing.  Breathing takes place by itself.  Just light the lamp of mindfulness and shine it on your breathing.  Don’t modify, bend, or make your breathing the way you think it is supposed to be.  If your in-breath is short, let it be short.  If your out-breath is long, let it be long.  Become aware of your in-breath and out-breath as they are….After a few minutes you will notice an improvement in the quality of your breathing, and a feeling of well-being will be born in you.”

Mindfulness of the Body and calming/ease
“Breathing in, I am aware of whole body.  Breathing out, I am aware of my whole body.”
With this second subject, we embrace our body with mindfulness rather than just embracing our breathing…. We recognize the presence of our body and “return home” to be one with it…. If we do not come back to our home and care for it, who will?  When we come home to it, our body breathes a sigh of relief and says, “She has come back at last.”

“Breathing in, I calm my whole body.  Breathing out, I calm my whole body.”

“Now that we have observed and accepted our whole body, we can bring peace and calm to it.”

 “If you practice this way for ten or twenty minutes, the flow of your breathing and of your bodily functions will become very calm, and your mind will feel quite released… It is like drinking a glass of cool lemonade on a hot day and feeling your body becoming cool inside.  When you breathe in, the air enters your body and calms all the cells of your body.  At the same time, each “cell” of your breathing becomes more peaceful and each “cell” of your mind also becomes more peaceful.  The three are one, and each one is all three.  This is the key to meditation.  Breathing brings the sweet joy of meditation to you.  It is food.  If you are nourished by the sweet joy of meditation, you become joyful, fresh, and tolerant, and everyone around you will benefit from your joy.”
[Breathe!  You Are Alive, by Thich Nhat Hanh.  Pages 45, 49-50.]

“In Active Concentration, the mind dwells on whatever is happening in the present moment, even as it changes.

A Silver Bird flies over the Autumn Lake.
When it has passed,
The lake’s surface does not try to hold on to the image of the bird.”

As the bird flies over the lake, its reflection is lucid.  After it is gone, the lake reflects the clouds and the sky just as clearly.  When we practice active concentration, we welcome whatever comes along….We just dwell in the present moment with all our being.  Whatever comes, comes.  When the object of our concentration has passed, our mind remains clear, like a calm lake.”  [Heart of the Buddha, p. 96-7]

The Buddha:
"Then, Bahiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen. In reference to the heard, only the heard. In reference to the sensed, only the sensed. In reference to the cognized, only the cognized. That is how you should train yourself.

When for you there will be only the seen in reference to the seen, only the heard in reference to the heard, only the sensed in reference to the sensed, only the cognized in reference to the cognized, then, Bahiya, there is no you in terms of that. When there is no you in terms of that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two. This, just this, is the end of stress."  [Bahiya Sutra, Thanissaro Bhikkhu,

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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Day of Mindfulness Nov 19: Creating Peace in Ourselves, Creating Peace in the World: When Turning Inward isn't Turning Away

Dharma Teacher Joanne Friday leads Day of Mindfulness November 19, 2011

Community of Mindfulness New York /Metro
Inspired by the Teachings and Practice of Thich Nhat Hanh

Invites us to practice together :
Day of Mindfulness
with Dharma Teacher Joanne Friday.

Saturday, November 19, 2011, 10a.m. to 4:30p.m. (Please Arrive by 9:45).
The Riverside Church
91 Claremont Avenue, 8-T (Betw. 120-122nd Sts, one block W of Broadway)
South Hall [first floor]

Creating Peace in Ourselves, Creating Peace in the World: When Turning Inward isn't Turning Away
Joanne Friday, leads retreats and workshops throughout New England. She received the Dharmacharya Lamp Transmission from her teacher, Thich Nhat Hanh in 2003.

Joanne considers the transmission of the Dharma to be the most wonderful gift she has received and her greatest joy is passing it on. It will be our joy to receive it on this day along with her beautiful presence and deep practice.

Donation and Dana Appreciated

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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Sept 17 Day of Mindfulness; Month of Collective Practice: Peace, Healing and Reconciliation

A Month of Collective Practice
Peace Healing and Reconciliation: An Invitation for September 2011

"There is no way to Peace,Peace is the Way"  Thich Nhat Hanh

 Our tradition offers many practices to help us meet life's challenges from a place of peace, compassion and joy... and not out of fear, violence, suffering or worry.

This month let us collectively plant seeds of peace, with our Sanghas and in our daily lives.  We encourage local Sangha members and local Sanghas to explore  peace, healing and reconciliation practices from our tradition in our personal and collective practice during this month.

September 17 InterSangha Day of Mindfulness
Riverside Church, 8-T, 91 Claremont Avenue, NY, NY

To support this intention,  there will be an InterSangha Day of Mindfulness offered on Saturday September 17th, from 10 to 4:30, at The Riverside Church.  The Day will focus on  teachings, study and practices that have inspired our local teachers as they reflect on this month which holds the 10th Anniversary of September 11th.

To help support the collective energy please arrive on time, plan to stay for the whole day and bring a vegetarian lunch.

Let us take this this month to strengthen our intention to plant seeds of peace and healing in our own hearts, the hearts of our families, communities, and society.  May all our actions send peace, compassion, reconciliation and healing for the benefit of all Beings throughout space and time. 

in peace
David, Jeanne, Marjorie and Dennis

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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Thich Nhat Hanh Returns Home

 Dear Friends,
Here is a link to video of Thay returning to the Tu Hieu Temple:   .  Below this  is the announcement of Plum Village of Thay's return to Vietnam to live his remaining Days.
Take care,
David Flint 

Dear Friends,

Below is a posting from the Plum Village Website, about our Dear Teacher Thay.

Take care


Thich Nhat Hanh Returns Home


Friday 2nd November, 2018

Plum Village International Practice Center
Le Pey, Thénac 24240, France
The monks and nuns of the Plum Village International Community of Engaged Buddhists stand by our beloved teacher, the Zen master, global spiritual leader, peace activist and poet Thich Nhat Hanh, as he returns again to his homeland. Since celebrating his 92nd birthday last month, he has expressed a deep wish to go back to reside at his “root temple,” Tu Hieu Temple in Hue, Vietnam, to live his remaining days. Thich Nhat Hanh has turned formidable physical challenges arising from the major stroke he suffered four years ago into a powerful teaching by continuing to live each moment peacefully and joyfully, with great presence and meaning.
Tu Hieu Temple is where Thich Nhat Hanh first became a monk in 1942, aged sixteen. After nearly sixty years spreading the teachings abroad, Thich Nhat Hanh’s final homecoming is a source of peace and happiness for his students, Tu Hieu Temple and lineage. It is very precious for Thich Nhat Hanh’s large international following to maintain this deep and enduring connection to our spiritual roots in Vietnam. Thich Nhat Hanh, who coined the term “Engaged Buddhism” and who has dedicated his life to renewing Buddhism so it can help individuals and societies address the challenges of our times, has always seen the roots of his teachings in the engaged spiritual life of the distinguished Buddhist patriarchs during Vietnam’s ancient Ly and Tran dynasties.
Although since his stroke Thich Nhat Hanh has no longer been able to speak, he remains powerfully alert and present. After summoning his senior disciples to a meeting on 24th October in Plum Village Thailand, where he has been residing since December 2016, Thich Nhat Hanh clearly communicated his wish to return to Vietnam using gestures, nodding and shaking his head in response to questions. The necessary arrangements were made for his return and he landed at Da Nang Airport, Vietnam on the afternoon of 26th October. His arrival was celebrated by a receiving party of senior Buddhist venerables, monks, nuns and lay followers.
After resting for two days by the ocean to recover from the journey, Thich Nhat Hanh arrived at Tu Hieu on the afternoon of October 28th, where he was welcomed with a traditional formal procession and the sound of drums and bells. As he entered, he took a moment to reach out and touch the cool stone of the ancient gateway: a seal of arrival and return. Everyone present remained silent as he contemplated the half-moon pond, where he had spent many memorable moments as a young monk, and then made his way to the Buddha hall to pay his respects and offer incense at the ancestral altar.  
Since his arrival, Thich Nhat Hanh’s health has remained fragile but stable. He has joined his community in walking meditation at dawn, visiting every corner of this temple that was his home and where he was nurtured as he embarked on his spiritual path. On the evening of October 26th in Da Nang, as the current Abbot and Head of Tu Hieu lineage, Thich Nhat Hanh directed his disciples to draft a letter inviting all the monks and nuns of the Tu Hieu lineage (disciples and descendants of Zen Master Thanh Quy, his teacher), to a joyful family gathering and homecoming celebration at Tu Hieu Temple on Saturday November 3rd. As Thich Nhat Hanh said when he first returned to Vietnam in 2005, after four decades of exile, “There is no religion, no doctrine higher than brotherhood and sisterhood.”
Even at this moment, Thich Nhat Hanh remains steadfast and energetic in using every breath and every action to build and strengthen the “beloved community of compassion,” and to cultivate healing, reconciliation and transformation in his community, society and the world..
Future reports on our Teacher will be posted officially at, and

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Day of Mindfulness July 16, 2011

Breathe! You are Alive: A Day of Mindfulness

July 16, 10-4:30pmAt Riverside Church, 8-T, 91 Claremont Avenue, Manhattan

Breathe and you know that you are alive.

Breathe and you know that all is helping you.

Breathe and you know that you are the world. Breathe and you know that the flower is breathing too.

Breathe for yourself and breathe for the world.
Breathe in compassion and breathe out the joy.

Breathe and be one with the air that you breathe.

Breathe and be one with the river that flows.

Breathe and be one with the earth that you tread.

Breathe and be one with the fire that glows.

Breathe and you break the thought of birth and death.

Breathe and you see impermanence is life.

Breathe for your joy to be steady and calm.

Breathe for your sorrow to flow away.

Breathe to renew every cell in your blood,.

Breathe to renew the depths of consciousness.

Breathe and you dwell in the here and now.

Breathe and all you touch is new and real.

[Written by Sister Annabel]

In this Day we will enjoy the meditation exercises proposed by the Buddha in the Full Awareness of Breathing Sutra [Anapanasati], as shared by Thay in Breathe! You are Alive, and The Blooming of a Lotus. Together we can stop,calm, rest and look deeply into impermanence, breath by breath. Several weeks ago the Rock Blossom Sangha hosted a Day of Mindfulness with this theme and we are inspired to continue exploring these practices.

Our Day will be simple: sitting and walking meditations, mindful movements, noble silence, total relaxation, time for Dharma Sharing, a song or two or three! We eat together in mindfulness and silence from about 1-2pm.

Everyone Welcome. No experience necessary. Come for all or part of the Day. Chairs and cushions available.Please do not wear fragrances.

At 91 Claremont Avenue, between 120-122nd Street, one block west of Broadway, Riverside Church, 8-T.

David Flint and Walter Lyons, of the Riverside and Morningstar Sanghas will facilitate.

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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Day of Mindfulness June 18, Riverside Church

Community of Mindfulness New York Metro
Inspired by the Teachings and Practice of Thich Nhat Hanh

Dear Friends,

Saturday June 18 is our Day of Mindfulness at Riverside Church, room 8-T, from 10-4:30pm. Ishmael Wallace and Marjorie Markus of the Riverside Sangha will facilitate the Day.

"The Day will be an opportunity to spread out into majestic meditations from the Lotus and Flower Ornament Sutras in which visualization helps us savor interdependence. We will walk, sit, lie down, enjoy a meal together (bring a vegetarian lunch), and share our experiences, in such a way as to vividly experience our interconnection with all."

Chairs and cushions are available. No experience necessary. Please do not wear fragrances. Come for all or part of the Day.

At Riverside Church in Manhattan, 91 Claremont Avenue, between 120-122nd Street, one block west of Broadway.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Touching Reality: removing notions and concepts to embrace life's wonders: May 21 Day of Mindfulness

Touching Reality: removing notions and concepts to embrace life's wonders.

Dear Friends,
Please Join us for a Day of Mindfulness May 21, 10am-4pm, at Riverside Church, room 8-T, 91 Claremont Avenue in Manhattan.

The theme of the Day is "Touching Reality: removing notions and concepts to embrace life's wonders." We will practice sitting and walking meditations, total relaxation, dharma sharing, and singing. We will also listen to a dharma talk on the Avatamsaka Sutra* by Thich Nhat Hanh. Everyone welcome--no prior 'experience' necessary.

The day will begin at 10:00 and end at 4:00. You are welcome to join us for any part of the day. Please arrive before 9:50 if you intend to start the day with us.

Please bring a vegetarian lunch. Our practice of mindful eating will take place between noon and 1:00 pm. Chairs and cushions are available.

"If you realize the importance of going beyond concepts of birth and death, self and other, inside and outside, you will be liberated from the desire to use reason to prove your understanding."
"Understanding interbeing can cure this illness (of superiority, inferiority and equality complexes) and establish perfect harmony between so-called self and so-called other."
- from Transformation At The Base by Thich Nhat Hanh.

Our Day will be facilitated by Nina Teng. Nina practices with the Morningstar, Riverside, Green Island and Rock Blossom Sanghas.

* The Avatamsaka Sutra is also known as the Flower Ornament Sutra. Thay addresses this Sutra inCultivating the Mind of Love and in other talks and writings. The Sutra focuses on the idea of universal connection and interpenetration - "the one is in the all, and the all is in the one".

May 20-22, 2011 New York Sanghas Weekend Retreat at Blue Cliff Monastery

For All NYC Metro Area Sangha Practitioners At Blue Cliff Monastery, we will enjoy being wonderfully together at Blue Cliff Monastery. Sunday morning there will be a Five Mindfulness Trainings Transmission Ceremony.

Blue Cliff Monastery requests that participants REGISTER in advance. Please fill out the registration form on line at To Room Share Please include the name/s of your roommates on the registration form All registrations will be confirmed by e-mail directly from Blue Cliff Monastery. Questions? E-mail Blue Cliff Monastery at

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Lamp Transmission!

2011 Feb 21-Lamp transmission -Plum Village

In our tradition the Great Ordination Ceremonies

begin after the annual winter retreat.

This year is particularly auspicious for those of us in the Northeast because Four long-time OI members and Sangha builders have been invited to receive Lamp at Plum Village for ordination as teachers. This includes Green Island Sangha'sJeanne Marie Anselmo, Rock Blossom Sangha's Dennis Bohn and Riverside Sangha's Marjorie Markus and David Flint.

Thay offering Incense with the High venerables

Elder nuns paying respect to the Buddha and the ancestors

Chân Tuệ Quán

True insight looking

Marjorie Markus

Quản đại trí tuệ quán Hạnh nguyện Quan Âm xưa Hiểu thương là sự nghiệp Thành tựu pháp chân thừa.

Chân Bản Thiện

True Good Nature

David Flint Đường về thấy lại bản nguyên Bàn tay thiện hữu trợ duyên vững bền Tăng thân tìm lối đi lên Nguyện xưa ân trả nghĩa đền đẹp sao

Chân An Sơn

True mountain of peace

(Dennis Bohn)

Năm tháng an cư trên đất Tịnh Ngắm nhìn sơn thủy cảnh thần tiên Nắng xuân về lại trên quê cũ Hạt giống đầy gieo thửa phước điền.

Months and years residing in the Pure Land Observing and enjoying the heavenly scenery of Mountains and rivers The Spring sunshine has come back to the old path The Seeds has been fully sown all over the fertile land

Chân Bảo Thủ

Jeanne Marie Anselmo

Tam Bảo nương về mỗi bước chân An ban thủ hộ cả thân tâm Chùa xưa trên đỉnh non mây trắng Trăng sáng hiên ngoài hiện pháp thân.

8 new Dharma teachers: Sr Thang Nghiem, Marjorie Marcus,Phap Tap,David Flint, Dennis Bohn,GlenSchneider, Br Phap Vu, Jeanne Anselmo

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day of Mindfulness March 19, 2011 at Riverside Church



SAT, MARCH 19, 2011

10:00am-4:00 PM


Our past is with us, but it need not limit us. Thich Nhat Hanh offers us a generous range of techniques with which to re-frame our actions to live joyfully in the present.

Please join us for a day of healing, using silent, guided and walking meditations, relevant readings, Touching the Earth, deep conscious sharing and journaling–all designed to help us look at our past with compassion and new eyes of understanding.

We will also have a potluck vegetarian lunch. Bring something for yourself, and, if you like, something to share. To support your healing, you might want to bring a food which has strong associations with your past–a peanut butter and jelly sandwich? green jello with marsh mellows? Oreo cookies?

Facilitated by David Ostwald and Birgitte Moyer-Vinding.

Chairs and cushions available. Please do not wear fragrances.

In room 8-T, Riverside Church, 91 Claremont Avenue, between 120-122nd Street, one block west of Broadway in Manhattan.