Perhaps because I read this book shortly after the sudden, unexpected death of someone close to me, and after Thich Nhat Hanh's recent "day of mindfulness" here in Boulder, it touched me more deeply than any of Thay's previous books. In NO DEATH, NO FEAR, Thich Nhat Hanh succeeds once again at reducing a complex subject into a simple Buddhist teaching. Many of us would rather avoid the troubling subject of death. Thay observes that this is because we are afraid we will become nothing when we die. If we believe we cease to exist when we die, he says we are not looking deeply enough into death.
Death teaches us valuable lessons about impermanence and the interconnectedness (or "interbeing") of all things. In his characteristic style, the Vietnamese monk uses metaphors and simple illustrations to reveal that our human life is just a temporary manifestation, much like a wave on the ocean or a signal transformed into a song on the radio. By looking deeply into the everyday world in which we are interconnected with everything else, we may experience life without the fear of death.