Get to Know Magnolia Grove Monastery

Sonia Thompson

Just outside of Batesville, Mississippi, might sound like an unexpected place to find a Buddhist monastery. But there lies Magnolia Grove Meditation Practice Center, a meditation center in the tradition of Plum Village, founded by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, who was nominated for a Noble Peace Prize by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Deer Park Monastery in California and Blue Cliff Monastery in New York uphold Hanh's tradition. Now, his teaching and methods of practice are taking root in Mississippi.

The vision of the community that built this practice center was fully realized when Thich Nhat Hanh accepted Magnolia Grove Monastery as a mindfulness practice center in 2005. Today, more than thirty monastics from Thich Nhat Hanh’s monasteries are in residence.

Just about 30 miles from Splinter Creek, the brothers and sisters of the monastery often invite the public to join them for Sunday days of mindfulness, as well as longer retreats they host on weekends throughout the year.

Visit the Magnolia Grove website for more information or to schedule a visit. During your time on the grounds, you will have the opportunity to practice sitting and walking meditations, participate in mindful eating with the community, to listen to talks by teachers, and enjoy the gardens, nature trails, lily pad pond, and meditation center.

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