Work: How to Find Joy and Meaning in Each Hour of the Day

Thich Nhat Hanh, Author, Rachel Neumann, Editor
Thich Nhat Hanh. Parallax, $12.95 trade paper (120p) ISBN 978-1-937006-20-4
Reviewed on: 12/17/2012
Release date: 12/01/2012
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With his characteristic gentleness and insight, Vietnamese Zen master Nhat Hanh (Fear) applies his key teachings to the workplace. "[I]f we practice mindfulness in everything we do," he writes, "our work can help us realize our ideal of living in harmony with others and of cultivating understanding and compassion." Taking the reader step-by-step through the workday, Nhat Hanh discusses applying mindfulness to simple activities (eating breakfast, answering the phone), using breathing and walking meditation to promote ease, and resolving negative emotions and workplace conflict. Suggestions and models (such as a "peace treaty") provide tools for change. The book also explores general topics such as right livelihood, happiness, and community. Linking workplace choices with the potential solution of pressing global problems, the famed peace activist calls for a "collective awakening" emphasizing cooperation, "co-responsibility," and interconnectedness. While Thich Nhat Hanh's teachings on mindfulness are universally applicable, examples are primarily drawn from white-collar occupations, with some attention to business leadership issues. Such a limited professional range may not be relevant for many wage earners—and potential readers—not does it reflect the open-hearted inclusivity for which Nhat Hanh is justly renowned. (Dec.)
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