The Heart of Understanding The heart of the Prajñaparamita Sutra is regarded as the essence of Buddhist teaching, offering subtle and profound teachings on non-duality and the letting go of all preconceived notions, opinions, and attachments, and so becoming open to all the wonders of our life.
The Heart Sutra is recited daily in Mahayana temples and practice centers throughout the world. Thich Nhat Hanh’s translation and commentary are the fruit of the author’s more than sixty years of monastic study and practice. He describes the sutra as "a precious gift to us, the gift of fearlessness."
Based on a historic lecture at the Green Gulch Zen Center, Muir Beach, California on April 19, 1987, this is one of the most simple, clear, concise, and understandable commentaries on this very important Buddhist sutra. In the Heart Sutra, the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara describes how to train in the perfection of wisdom by seeing through the illusory nature of all things. The Heart Sutra is Buddhism in a nutshell, containing only 632 characters in the traditional Chinese translation. Despite its brevity, it covers more of the Buddha’s teachings than any other scripture and has had the most profound and wide-reaching influence of any text in Buddhism.
This revised edition celebrates the 20th anniversary of the initial release and features a new introduction by Peter Levitt and a new afterword by Thich Nhat Hanh. Edited by poet and Zen teacher Peter Levitt, author of Fingerpainting on the Moon.