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Buddist Text- The Heart of Understanding Thich Nhat Hanh - Essay Example

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Buddist Text- The Heart of Understanding Thich Nhat Hanh

We may be able to see a figurative “sunshine” on the paper after a poet or a writer has written something that will move us but not the literal sunshine. The definition of the word interbeing in itself is confusing and in fact can even be contradictory in terms. Especially when Thich Nhat Hanh mentioned that “you cannot just be by yourself alone” (10). Dissecting the terms and their meaning of his text, he seemed to contradict himself of what he meant by being alone because by being alone is being without anyone else and how could I not be alone with myself when nobody is no longer around. Of course I am already alone by myself then. (b) Defend his argument by adding additional evidence or crafting an additional  logical proof  Thich Nhat Hanh’s Interbeing has to be read in the greater context of the belief system of which it operates which is Buddhism. Reading it by itself without inferring to a greater context of which it has to serve a purpose, the text will render the reader confused, with the author’s work becoming pointless because the texts cannot be understood as it is full of contradictions and stretched out connections. It will also be very difficult to understand because the allegory does not make any sense. In the text, Thich Nhat Hanh’s mentioned that it is just not possible that “you cannot just be by yourself alone” but I already am when nobody is around. And we cannot see the paper at the same time (Thich Nhat Hanh 9) because you are not here with me looking at the same text that I am reading. You may be looking at the same text but it would be another copy of the text, not the exact paper that I am reading. But in Thich Nhat Hanh’s perspective, we can actually be looking at the same paper even without your physical presence. To appreciate Thich Nhat Hanh text, we have to understand the theology of Bhavat Gita that motivated the meaning of Interbeing. While Bhagavad Gita is as common to the Buddhist as the Bible to the Christian, it is still a strange idea to a non-Buddhist especially if the reader’s perspective is oriented towards western philosophy and using it as a yardstick for understanding the text. The text is reflective Bhavat Gita’s concept of karma that everything is just a cycle and interrelated including life and death. This process of karma is ever continuing to improve one’s karma until enlightenment and vijnana is achieved. So everything in this world is in a continuum and nothing exists by itself because all is subjected to the law of karma which is cyclical and interrelated. When Thich Nhat Hanh mentioned that “you just cannot be alone by yourself” it was in fact logical when viewed with the perspective of a Buddhist. “To be” is to be “inter-be” because nature’s natural order of things is for us to be in commune with everything around us that there is no such thing as “just yourself”. To be “yourself” meant “to be with” because the natural order of the “self” is to serve karma which necessitates to be “inter-be”. Under this lens, seeing the parents of the logger or the sunshine on the paper is no longer improbable or illogical. For the paper is a part of the bigger scheme of things that are interrelated and came into being not only with the inputs of production of the ...Show more


(a) Critique this argument by pointing out an assumption of Thich Nhat Hanh’s  that does not make sense.  Interbeing If one is to read Thich Nhat Hanh’s writing in interbeing, nothing seems to make sense because the correlation that was made between the objects of his composition does not follow logic and the connections that were made defies science and was a stretch…
Author : mcclurebarton
Buddist Text- The Heart of Understanding Thich Nhat Hanh essay example
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