Buddhist monk and Vietnamese philosopher Thich Nhat Hanh passed this past January. I followed him for years and loved his messages, which have not died with his passing. They remain evergreen. Below is a great article on how he taught about love, a lesson that I believe is beneficial for everyone. I will give you his four mantras in my simple bullet form, but to really digest them, please read below.
–The most precious gift you can give to the one you love is your true presence.
–Mantra 1: Dear One, I am here for you.
–Mantra 2: Darling, I know you are there, and I am so happy. Because of the first mantra, you know that this person’s presence is precious to you.
–Present your wholehearted attentino and affection through this “hugging mediation.” Mantra 3: Dear One, I know you are suffering. That is why I am here for you.
— When you need help, ask for it. Mantra 4: Dear one, I am suffering; please help.
These mantras are simple but powerful. Try them this week.
Rule # 7 from my book The Fantastic Life: Be Value Driven
Love is the ultimate value. The people we love should be at the top of our priorities. But we can always learn to love others better. Love may come naturally, but it is still a value we can practice.
The Four Buddhist Mantras for Turning Fear into Love
“When you love someone, the best thing you can offer that person is your presence.”
By: Maria Popova | Published on December 3, 2021
“Fearlessness is what love seeks,” Hannah Arendt wrote in her magnificent early work on love and how to live with fear. “Such fearlessness exists only in the complete calm that can no longer be shaken by events expected of the future… Hence the only valid tense is the present, the Now.”
This notion of presence as the antidote to fear and the crucible of love is as old as the human heart, as old as the consciousness that first felt the blade of anticipatory loss pressed against the exposed underbelly of the longing for connection. It is at the center of millennia-old Buddhist philosophy and comes alive afresh, in a splendidly practical way, in Fear: Essential Wisdom for Getting Through the Storm (public library) by the great Vietnamese Buddhist teacher and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh, who continues to enrich, ennoble, and empower with his teachings well into his nineties.
In the general Buddhist style of befriending complexity through simplicity and with his particular gift for simple words strung into a rosary of immense wisdom radiating immense kindness, Thich Nhat Hanh writes:
We have a great, habitual fear inside ourselves. We’re afraid of many things — of our own death, of losing our loved ones, of change, of being alone. The practice of mindfulness helps us to touch nonfear. It’s only here and now that we can experience total relief, total happiness… In the practice of Buddhism, we see that all mental formations — including compassion, love, fear, sorrow, and despair — are organic in nature. We don’t need to be afraid of any of them, because transformation is always possible.
Such transformation is possible only through deliberate practice — none more challenging, or more rewarding, than the practice of transforming fear into love. In consonance with his teaching that “to love without knowing how to love wounds the person we love,” he anchors this transmutation practice in four mantras “effective for watering the seeds of happiness in yourself and your beloved and for transforming fear, suffering, and loneliness.”