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The Seed Has Traveled Far
Whenever we have a retreat, people from different religions practice together without any discrimination. Our teachings have been received easily, enthusiastically, and happily. Our method of practice seems to be applicable for many schools of Buddhism as well. Whether practitioners come from Japanese Zen meditation, Korean meditation, vipassana meditation, or Tibetan Buddhism, they all practice together and feel at ease in our retreats.
Business people who participated in a retreat held in Plum Village reported that, a few months after the retreat, they continue to have more insight into what they learned. The seed that were planted in the retreat continue to sprout bit by bit, offering deeper understanding. We have been able to present the teaching in such a way that young people and Westerners can understand them, accept them, and apply them. That is a big success of Plum Village, but it is not the work of one person alone or just the work of few years. It is the work of thirty –five years that includes twenty years of Plum Village and the work of the entire Sangha.
We have been able to present the Five Mindfulness Training in non-Buddhist terminology. The Five Mindfulness Training are very true and very deep expression of the practice of Buddhism. They are a concrete way of practicing mindfulness—not restrictive commandments. We have also presented the Fourteen Mindfulness as the essence of the practice of Buddhism. Many people who do not call themselves Buddhist like to recite the Fourteen Mindfulness Trainings. We have established more than eight hundred local Sanghas all over the world. In large cities like London, there are over ten Sanghas. Small towns also have their Sanghas. In Israel, there are Sanghas. In Australia and in Germany, there are many Sanghas. In Vietnam, there are numerous temples and Sanghas following the mindfulness practice of Plum Village. If you do not see these eight hundred manifestations all over the world, you have not seen Plum Village.
One day while sitting in London during a retreat, I was very moved to receive letters from practitioners in Edinburgh, Scotland, who wrote thoughtful letters about their practice and about their Sangha and shared their happiness. I have never been to Edinburgh, but the seed of Plum Village has traveled to Edinburgh and it has made me very happy. This is just an example of one of the many places I have never been, but where the seeds of our practice have flown. Here in France, there is a plant called pissenlit, the dandelion. When the dandelion plan ripens, it produces seeds, which the wind carries very far. In the same way, the seeds sown by Sangha of Plum Village have spread very far. They have traveled into prison, into Catholic cloister, into schools, families, hospitals, and communities around the world, and they will continue to go far in the future.
Last Updated (Friday, 23 November 2012 14:54)