img_0339Promise me,

Promise me this day,

Promise me now,

While the sun is overhead

Exactly at the zenith,

Promise me:


Even as they

Strike you down

With a mountain of hatred and violence;

Even as they step on you and crush you

Like a worm,

Even as they dismember and disembowel you,

Remember brother,


Man is not our enemy.


The only thing worthy of you is compassion –

Invincible, limitless, unconditional.

Hatred will never let you face

The beast in man.


One day, when you face this beast alone,

With your courage intact, your eyes kind,


(even as no one sees them),

out of your smile

will bloom a flower.

And those who love you

Will behold you

Across ten thousand worlds of birth and dying.


Alone again.

I will go on with bent head,

Knowing that love has become eternal.

On the long, rough road,

The sun and the moon

Will continue to shine.


-Thich Nhat Hanh, 1965

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s