A Casual Conversation with a Zen Master about Life, Love, Success, Happiness, and Meaning


The root of all suffering and attachments is within us. Those who don’t make the effort to closely reflect upon their own lives mistakenly believe that suffering and attachments come from the outside. However, the path to peace of mind can never be found outside of our minds. No matter what kinds of problems we may have, if we reflect deeply, we realize that the root of our afflictions is within us and that the mind itself is empty. With this realization, our suffering naturally disappears. Once we free ourselves from our attachments, our suffering will end immediately. Our modern civilization is facing a serious crisis. People are losing their humanity, communities are disintegrating, and the natural environment is being destroyed. We can look to the teachings of the Buddha to find solutions to these problems. The Law of Interdependence shows the state of things as they are. As this exists, that exists, and if this ceases to exist that will also cease to exist. Since everything is interdependent, your unhappiness turns into my unhappiness, and your happiness leads to my happiness. Based on this dependent origination, we pursue the path we can travel together in happiness. I hope we can become free of attachments and suffering by changing our mindset, with the aim of overcoming the crisis impending on our civilization and creating a better world, in which individuals are happy, communities are peaceful and the natural environment is preserved.

About the Speaker:


Venerable  Pomnyun Sunim is one of the most recognized and influential religious leaders in South Korea with active following. He is well known for his unique way of engaging audiences in Dharma Q&A rooted in Buddhist teachings. He is also the founder and chair of an international relief agency (Join Together Society), a center for peace, human rights and refugees (Good Friends), a think-tank (The Peace Foundation), and an environmental movement organization (EcoBuddha). His extensive humanitarian and peace building work include efforts to alleviate the suffering of ordinary North Koreans through the development of food aid programs and by working with marginalized people in Asian countries to build schools and promote community development. In recognition of his contribution, he received the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Peace and International Understanding in 2002 and the POSCO TJ Park Community Development and Philanthropy Prize in 2011. In 2015, Pomnyun Sunim received Kripasaran Award from the Bengal Association at the 150th  Birth Anniversary Celebration of Ven. Mahasthavir Kripasaran, for his efforts in reviving Buddhism in India.



To read more, please visit www.pomnyun.com.