Walk With Me - A journey into mindfulness


ON Monday 8th January a group from St Bride's went to Picturehouse @ FACT on Wood Street to see this film. Jackie O' Carroll offers her reflection:

Walk With Me is a film about mindfulness. It is a tribute to the work and wisdom of the Vietnamese Buddist monk Thich Nhat Hanh and the Buddhist community, Plum Village, he founded in Southern France.

The film offers us a little taste of the life of the community of monks and nuns who live there, their daily lives of routine, relationships, work and joy, of people who come to Plum Village on retreat to share in those routines and relationships and the silence and the bell. The bell rings every 15 minutes - a constant reminder to come back to the present moment, an invitation to stop whatever we are doing and just be. There is a string quartet playing and they stop as the bell rings. I wondered if they really stopped every fifteen minutes? It didn't give much scope for playing an entire piece of music!

There were moments of amusement and moments of awe and grace. The nun cooking food - she commented that it could be repetitive and boring. And then she filled bowls of the most beautiful food and arranged them on a tray so carefully, so delicately,  with such love.

I spoke with a number of people after the film. There was a sense of peace and calm that seeing the film had left with people, and of wanting more silence and peace in their lives. 

In his book 'Happiness: Essential mindfulness practices' Thich Nhat Hanh writes:

'We can practice mindfulness in our room or on our way from one place to another. We can do very much the same things we always do - walking, sitting, working, eating, talking - except we do them with an awareness of what we are doing... your body and mind come together as one allowing you to to be fully available to witness, contemplate and enjoy the scenery,  to remember who you are'.

Seeing people walking with and behind Thich Nhat Hanh felt very special to me. The film calls us to 'Walk with Me' - to walk with Thich Nhat Hanh himself, but more importantly perhaps to adopt a way of being that brings us this peace and joy.

Watch a preview here:

Follow the film's official website: http://walkwithmefilm.com/ and Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/walkwithmefilm/?fref=ts Directed by Max Pugh & Marc J. Francis and narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch, WALK WITH ME is a cinematic journey into the world of mindfulness - the practice of bringing one's attention to the present moment - and world-famous Thich Nhat Hanh, known as "The Father of Mindfulness", "The Other Dalai Lama" and "The Zen Master who fills stadiums".