Following the medical check-up, Thay wished to travel to the nearby Thai Plum Village community in Pak Chong, on the edge of Khao Yai National Park, some 175 kilometers from Bangkok. There he will stay, enjoying the sunshine and dry air, to recover from pneumonia under the watchful eye of specialists not available in Vietnam, according to the letter. Thay, who turned 93 in October, is expected to remain in Pak Chong for some time, returning to Vietnam ahead of the upcoming Lunar New Year on 25–27 January.
“We are grateful that Thay is so clear and engaged with respect to his medical care, which helps us make decisions to support his needs. We are learning from Thay’s grace and dignity as he rides the waves of physical fragility. We are investing all our hearts in nurturing Thay’s spiritual community, continuing his teachings and aspiration in the world.”
Thich Nhat Hanh has been a key figure in 20th and 21st century Buddhism, strongly influencing the reception of Buddhism in the West. He coined the term engaged Buddhism in his book Vietnam: Lotus in a Sea of Fire (1967) and has published more than 100 books on topics of Buddhist practice and philosophy as well as interreligious dialogue and environmental concern. His work has been studied by Buddhist ethicists and academics including Sallie King, Damien Keown, Barbra Clayton, and Paul Fuller. He founded the Order of Interbeing in Saigon in 1966 and Plum Village in France in 1982 and until his stroke traveled extensively promoting peace and the practice of mindfulness.
(source: Plum Village letter and www.buddhistdoor.net)