Vietnamese Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh is one of the most renowned Buddhist teachers in the world, and a prolific author on mindfulness and Engaged (or Applied) Buddhism. His international community of over 500 monks and nuns apply his teachings on mindfulness, peace-making, community-building and serving society in practice centres in France (Plum Village in the South West and Maison de L’Inspir’ in Paris), Germany (the European Institute of Applied Buddhism), America (Deer Park Monastery in California, Blue Cliff Monastery in New York, Magnolia Village in Mississippi), Hong Kong, Australia and Thailand.
Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh and his students have given public talks, and led peace walks and retreats at the United States Congress, the Parliament of India, UNESCO and at the World Parliament of Religions. Every year Plum Village teachers lead retreats on mindfulness in dozens of countries world-wide, including—beyond Europe—South Africa, Botswana, Brazil, Japan, Taiwan, New Zealand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Canada.
Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh is not just committed to teaching mindfulness, but also to applying mindfulness and peace to the wider issues facing humanity today. He has led retreats and published books on ecology (The World We Have, 2008), peace-making in the Middle East, mindfulness in prisons, interfaith dialogue (Living Buddha, Living Christ, 1995) and on Buddhist Psychology and neuroscience. In 2009 Thich Nhat Hanh released a new text towards a universal Global Ethic, the Revised Five Mindfulness Trainings. These simple, inspiring tenets express, in non-religious terms, a vision of an ethical way to live at peace with ourselves, one-another and our planet.
Plum Village retreats and practices have long had a very young following. Plum Village’s annual Summer Opening attracts over 2,000 families and young people from all over the world to come and practice mindfulness in a peaceful atmosphere alongside monks and nuns. Plum Village monks and nuns, the majority of whom are under 35 years old, follow the path of personal transformation and joyful, engaged service expressed in the Fourteen Mindfulness Trainings.
Every year these monastics lead retreats for young people in Plum Village and across Europe. The Wake Up Movement, an active international community of young people practising mindfulness in the Plum Village tradition, was formally established in 2008.