Q & A With Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh

We are starting a new feature in our Blog.  Each week, we will share with you a question that has been posed to Thich Nhat Hanh and his answer to the question.  We welcome your thoughts on the question and his response.

Question:  How can we incorporate the practice of mindfulness and living in the present moment with making plans for our lives?

Thich Nhat Hanh’s answer:

The practice of mindfulness doesn’t forbid us to plan for the future.  It’s best not to lose ourselves in uncertainty and fear over the future, but if we’re truly established in the present moment, we can bring the future to the here and the now, and make plans.  

We’re not losing the present moment when we think about the future.  In fact, the present moment contains both past and future.   The only material that the future is made of is the present.  If you know how to handle the present in the best way you can, that’s all you can do for the future.  

Handling the present moment with all your attention, all your intelligence, is already building a future.  

From Answers from the Heart (2009) by Thich Nhat Hanh. With permission of Parallax Press, Berkeley, California. www.parallax.org.



What an outstanding idea for the blog. The reality of the present moment handled with all your attention, as Thay says, is building a future. As for me, the here & now has brought wonderful freedom from stress from the past & future.