World-renowned peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh arrives in Washington, DC to speak at the sold-out Living Mindfully, Living Peacefully event this evening at the Warner Theatre hosted by Omega Institute of Rhinebeck, New York. Tomorrow, he will deliver the Annual Walter Capps-Bill Emerson Memorial Lecture, “Path Toward Peace: Cultivating Clarity, Compassion, and Courage in Political Life,” which is a private event for Congress and not open to the public. Afterwards, the Zen master will be offering a unique overnight retreat for members of Congress in the House of Representatives and the US Senate. Both Congressional events are co-hosted by the US Institute of Peace and the Faith and Politics Institute.
Since taking monastic vows at age 16 in Vietnam, Thich Nhat Hanh has written more than 100 books and dedicated his life to promoting peace. The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., nominated him for the Nobel Peace Price in 1967. According to the New York Times, “Among Buddhist leaders influential in the West, Thich Nhat Hanh ranks second only to the Dalai Lama.”
According to Robert “Skip” Backus, chief executive officer at Omega Institute, “The Omega Institute has hosted Thich Nhat Hanh for more than two decades, and we are pleased to bring him and his teachings on peace to Washington at such a critical time in our nation’s life,” said . “Considering the country’s unrest, as demonstrated by social protests on Wall Street and at Freedom Plaza in DC, we think Thich Nhat Hanh’s message of compassion, and mindfulness offers a powerful recipe for change.”
Thich Nhat Hanh served as delegate to the Paris peace talks in 1973 that helped end the Vietnam War, and he preached nonviolence in a memorable speech in New York City just days after September 11, 2001. He is a lifelong advocate of mindfulness, a practice of directing one’s attention that scientists are researching in universities across the United States. From his home base in France to locations around the globe, Thich Nhat Hanh has taught mindfulness peace practices, including meditation, to hundreds of thousands of students and millions of readers worldwide. His books include Peace Is Every Step, Being Peace, Touching Peace, Living Buddha Living Christ, Teachings on Love, and Anger.
While this evening’s public event is sold out, citizens are encouraged to urge their senators and representatives representatives to attend the retreat later this week. Please visit http://plumvillage.org/events/events/321-how-u-can-help-congressional-retreat-11.html or contact Sr. Peace (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information.