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Moments of Joy


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The first full-length collection of poems from contemplative Buddhist nun Sister Jina van Hengel, each short verse radiates the energy of a single moment of awareness.

About the Author

Known for the depth of her insight and her gentle, illuminating teaching style, Sister Jina was ordained as a Zen nun in 1985 in Japan. She received full ordination as a bhikshuni as well as authorization to teach from Thich Nhat Hanh in 1992. Sister Jina, who served her monastery as an abbess for 16 years, is deeply beloved as a community elder in the Thich Nhat Hanh community for her profound insight and her embodiment of Zen teachings. Moments of Joy is the first full-length collection of her contemplative poems, each short verse radiating the energy of a single moment of awareness. Rich in images from the natural world, Sister Jina's poetry also expresses a keen sense of emotional honesty.


"Sister Jina's life and way of living is like a poem."
-Sister Chan Khong, author of Learning True Love: Practicing Buddhism in a Time of War

"The best mind medicine."
-Adriaan van Diis

"These light, refreshing, and often humorous gems of poetry will gladden your heart on a rainy day and enhance the sunshine. Composed by a Buddhist nun who has diligently practiced mindfulness and concentration for many years, they are like drops of morning dew that wash away all confusion and lead to the flowering of insight."
-Sister Annabel Laity, author of True Virtue: The Autobiography of a Western Buddhist Nun

"A beautiful body of work that somehow feels as though it was written a century ago, and a century from now, at the very same time. These are simple observations that too often go unnoticed, the raw, perfect beauty of little moments. We all struggle to stay in the present, to absorb the beauty around us, but while reading this book, you cannot drift away."
-Tyler Knott Gregson, author of Miracle in the Mundane: Poems, Prompts, and Inspiration to Unlock Your Creativity and Unfiltered Joy

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