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Happy Farm, the Movie

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A short documentary entitled “Happy Farmers” by Barbora Kinkalová tells the story of “Happy Farm,” a small organic vegetable farm at Thich Nhat Hanh’s Plum Village Monastery in South France. Happy Farm was established in the fall of 2012 in an effort to grow food for the monastic community and to combine mindfulness practice and […]

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Urban Mindfulness Lab Online

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Today I am uploading a new blog site called Urban Mindfulness Lab (UML). Initially it will be a platform for reflections, photographs, experiences, projects, events and meditations on the subject of living mindfully in the city. As an urban planner, I have often wondered how mindfulness can contribute to more peaceful, sustainable and happier communities […]

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Retreat on Deep Sustainability at Lebensgut

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We just completed a small retreat on the subject of Deep Sustainability and Mindfulness at the new Lebensgut Retreat Center in Pommritz, Germany, a couple hours outside of Berlin. The four-day residential retreat was facilited by Daniel Dermitzel and Tobias Grimm, both students of Thich Nhat Hanh and experienced mindfulness practitioners. The retreat included daily meditations, presentations, […]

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Refugee Farmers Featured on NPR

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This morning I listened with joy to a radio story on the New Roots for Refugees program we worked together to create at Cultivate Kansas City and Catholic Charities. The story was actually broadcast a year ago but has been circulating again on social media, perhaps because it is an inspiring reminder of the important […]

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The Way Out is In

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We say we want to live in a world of peace, kindness, love and sustainability. Gandhi reminds us to “be the change we want to see,” and his words intuitively make sense. But how can we be peace, kindness, love and sustainability? In my experience it helps to periodically withdraw from the noise of our technological civilization […]

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Don’t just Do Something…

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“Don’t just do something, sit there,” people accustomed to meditation sometimes quip when confronted with a difficult situation. It means that instead of kicking into action at the first thought of trouble, we consider first taking a moment to sit and meditate. But isn’t that giving the situation time to deteriorate? For most problems, probably […]

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Our Earth, Our Self

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As we enter the first days of spring here in Plum Village in south-west France, we’d like to share with you the story of a small project called The Happy Farm. This small organic vegetable farm, which has only been in existence for three years, grew some €33,000 of fresh organic produce for the monastic […]