In this first essay, you will use personal experience and Thich Nhat Hanh’s Buddhist Teachings on Love to analyze the lyrics of one popular song of your choice. Compare and contrast how your experiences motivate you to relate to a song’s love message with how Thich Nhat Hanh’s philosophy would lead him to evaluate the same love song.

Please keep the following in mind as you construct your essay:
Organization: A clear thesis and topic sentences need to organize your essay. The thesis names your song, your “I/my” position on the love message, and a comparative Buddhist perspective on the song. Topic sentences explain the content of a paragraph, usually in the first sentence. Ideally these topic sentence will allow a transition from your reading of the song to that of Nhat Hanh. Do not begin paragraphs with a quote.
Content: At least half of the essay needs to focus on your personal feelings and experiences that inform your view of the song’s message of love. The other half of the essay needs to consider a Buddhist analysis of the song based upon Nhat Hanh’s Teachings on Love. Here is a breakdown on the page content: On page one, briefly summarize the love song and Nhat Hanhs’ Buddhism. Then include a developed thesis. On page two, analyze the quoted love song lyrics based upon your personal experience. On page three, analyze a different lyric quoted from the same love song based upon Nhat Hanh’s Teachings on Love with a quote from his book included as well. On page four, both compare and contrast your personal and Buddhist readings of the song and explain why those religious differences and similarities occur. Quote Nhat Hanh once on this page. Put the bibliography right after your conclusion.
Citations: You must use at least two “short quotes” with page references (p.1, 2, etc.) from Nhat Hanh and two “short quotes” from the song within your essay. For full credit, always quote several exact words from both Nhat Hanh and the song. Do not merely paraphrase. Explain the meaning of your short quotes in 2-3 sentences. List the alphabetized works cited in a bibliography right after the conclusion and on the same page if possible.
Grammar and Style: Correct grammar, an evolved personal “I” voice, and variety in sentence structure will improve your writing style.

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