Thursday, December 11, 2014

PowerPrayer for Absolute Victory Over Our Biggest Challenge!

When dealing with the extreme challenges of life...those problems that we KNOW are going to make us better people, strengthen our faith and develop our lives, how do we keep going when things get rough? 

How do we keep putting one foot in front of the other when it can appear our efforts aren't doing any good? 

As you know, I am in the throes of the biggest challenge of my life - finding victory for my son who has an illness that confounds even the most seasoned professionals. 

I am the Buddha on the team devoted to healing him and keeping him safe. I chant for his doctors, his counselors and the others who are surrounding him. I bring them information and resources that may help Ben, and they trust and work with me. We respect each other. And my family is all working in harmony as well...fueled by my daimoku and all of our determination.  

And sometimes, even though I am a Buddha, even though I chant Daimoku, I feel a moment of defeat. I am human. 

Yesterday I felt all I'd done was never going to be enough and the situation was hopeless. 

So what did I do? I called two of my Buddhist mentors. One encouraged me that giving up was not an option (I knew this in my heart). And the other praised me for doing my best at every moment and helping to reveal what needed to be revealed in the situation. She helped me see the benefit in all I have been doing. She helped me to appreciate the benefit in the moment. 

I felt so great after talking to her! THIS is why it is so important to find a mentor in faith whom we can talk to...who can share our struggles and encourage us when the going gets rough. 

The Soka Gakkai is FILLED with glorious mentors and warm hearts. We all need to reach out and develop these relationships. Finding and developing mentors is up to US! I have mentors because I have chanted to find people who inspire me. I have chanted to connect with my leaders. You can too. 

If you are hiding your heart, please consider that there may be another way. You can chant to connect with mentors who will inspire that you can be a mentor to others and inspire them. That's what it means to be a Buddha. Reach out! Ask for guidance from your local leaders. Chant to really find someone who can share your heart. It is so important. 

In the November 21st World Tribune, Nick Wilkinson quoted from the Gosho 

A Ship to Cross the Sea of Suffering.

"The currents of hardship 
pour into the sea of the Lotus Sutra 
and rush against its votary. 
The river is not rejected by the ocean; 
nor does the votary reject suffering. 
Were it not for the flowing rivers, 
there would be no sea. 
Likewise, without tribulation 
there would be no votary of the Lotus Sutra."
(The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p.3

Here is my offering to you today: 

PowerPrayer for Absolute Victory Over Our Biggest Challenge! 
by Jamie Lee Silver of

Oh life!

Even through my tears I will win over this HUGE obstacle!

Even when I feel defeated I know I will rise! 
I won't give up
I can't give up!

My daimoku at this very second 

infuses my life with wisdom. 
I infuse this moment with correct action. 

I KNOW what to do! 

This is my time! 

Defeating this obstacle will clear the path for me!


I am the Buddha
I am the Buddha!

Thank you, LIFE,  for this immense challenge! 

Thank you for this opportunity to grow!
Thank you for having this challenge in my life:
___________________________________________________and I am appreciating these things as I fight this great battle. I am protected in these areas:

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Conspicuous and Inconspicuous Benefit - What is revealed and what we see later

No Matter what ~ Don't give up. 

And don't waste your energy on worrying. When my sweet Mommy was alive she would tell me she was worrying and I'd say "Don't worry! Chant Instead!" and sometimes she would follow my advice, and immediately feel better.  

Even when we do not see the benefits we are chanting for appear right now, our fortune is accruing through chanting. Sensei once talked about each Gongyo being a sheet of paper on our desks. It builds slowly...but it does build. And sooner or later the inconspicuous benefits will reveal themselves in our lives...just when we need them most. Dont' take my word for it. Prove it to yourself. 

Here is a quote for your day:

"There are two kinds of benefit 
that derive from faith in the Gohonzon: 
conspicuous and inconspicuous. 
Conspicuous benefit is the obvious, 
visible benefit of being protected 
or being quickly able 
to surmount a problem when it arises, 
be it an illness 
or a conflict in a personal relationship. 
Inconspicuous benefit 
is good fortune accumulated slowly but steadily, 
like the growth of a tree 
or the rising of the tide, 
which results in the forging 
of a rich and expansive state of life. 
We might not discern any change from day to day, 
but as the years pass, 
it will be clear that we've become happy, 
that we've grown as individuals. "

Daisaku Ikeda

Monday, December 8, 2014

12 Ways You Can Love Yourself Now - by Louise Hay

12 Ways You Can Love Yourself Now
By Louise Hay

I have found that there is only one thing that heals every
and that is: to love yourself. 
When people start to love themselves more each day, 
it’s amazing how their lives get better. 
They feel better. 
They get the jobs they want. 
They have the money they need. 
Their relationships either improve, 
or the negative ones dissolve and new ones begin.

Loving yourself is a wonderful adventure; 
it’s like learning to fly. 
Imagine if we all had the power to fly at will? 
How exciting it would be! Let’s begin to love 
ourselves now.

Here are 
12 Commandments to help you learn how to love yourself:

1. Stop All Criticism.

Criticism never changes a thing. 
Refuse to criticize yourself. 
Accept yourself exactly as you are. 
Everybody changes. 
When you criticize yourself, 
your changes are negative. 
When you approve of yourself, your changes are positive.

2. Forgive Yourself.

Let the past go. 
You did the best you could at the time 
with the understanding, awareness, and knowledge 
that you had. 
Now you are growing and changing, and you will live life 

3. Don’t Scare Yourself.

Stop terrorizing yourself with your thoughts. 
It's a dreadful way to live. 
Find a mental image that gives you pleasure, and 
immediately switch your scary thought to a pleasure thought.

4. Be Gentle and Kind and Patient.

Be gentle with yourself. 
Be kind to yourself. 
Be patient with yourself 
as you learn the new ways of thinking. 
Treat yourself as you would someone you really loved.

5. Be Kind to Your Mind.

Self-hatred is only hating your own thoughts. 
Don't hate yourself for having the thoughts. 
Gently change your thoughts.

6. Praise Yourself.

Criticism breaks down the inner spirit. 
Praise builds it up. 
Praise yourself as much as you can. 
Tell yourself how well you are doing with every little thing.

7. Support Yourself.

Find ways to support yourself. 
Reach out to friends and allow them to help you. 
It is being strong to ask for help when you need it.

8. Be Loving to Your Negatives.

Acknowledge that you created them to fulfill a need. 
Now you are finding new, positive ways 
to fulfill those needs. 
So lovingly release the old negative patterns.

9. Take Care of Your Body.

Learn about nutrition. 
What kind of fuel does your body need 
in order to have optimum energy and vitality? 
Learn about exercise. 
What kind of exercise do you enjoy? 
Cherish and revere the temple you live in.

10. Do Mirror Work.

Look into your eyes often.
Express this growing sense of love you have for yourself
Forgive yourself while looking into the mirror. 
Talk to your parents while looking into the mirror. 
Forgive them, too. 
At least once a day, say, I love you, I really love you!

11. Love Yourself . . . Do It Now.

Don't wait until you get well, 
or lose the weight, 
or get the new job, 
or find the new relationship. 
Begin now—and do the best you can.

12. Have Fun.

Remember the things that gave you joy as a child.
 Incorporate them into your life now. 
Find a way to have fun with everything you do. 
Let yourself express the joy of living. 
Rejoice, and the Universe rejoices with you!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

5 Ways to Bring More Joy Into Our Lives

Yes! We can all Have SUCH JOY!

"Everything becomes a source of value, 
everything is brought to life, 
when we base ourselves on Daimoku. 
The Daishonin teaches that 
myo in Nam-myoho-renge-kyo 
means "to revive, to return to life." 
Nam-myoho-renge-kyo rejuvenates all knowledge, 
it revitalizes our daily lives. "

From Faith Into Action p.118 by Daisaku Ikeda

To build a life of happiness, strength and vigor we start with consistent, practice, and study.

powerful practice 
has these cornerstones: 

    • chanting twice a day - every day, 
    • studying, 
    • going to SGI meetings, 
    • encouraging others, 
    • and introducing people to chanting are the keystones of a powerful practice. 
    I tell you these things because they are true. Please don't take my word for it. I invite you to see for yourself. It cannot be described. It has to be experienced! And along with a solid practice, here are some other proven ways to build your happiness:

    Five Ways 
    to Bring More Joy Into Our Lives

    1. Smile! 
    Spreading joy will bring more joy into your life. 
    WE create our joy...our environment doesn't do it for us. We can find joy noticing the beauty of the sky, in a flower, in a smile. The scientific research I am reporting in my speeches prove that EMOTIONS are contagious. We can spread our smiles and make a cause for everyone's happiness. Our smiles literally light up the happiness emotion in another person's brain - whether they smile back at us or not! 

    2. Improve our Word Choices
    Our words both express and determine how we feel. Why feel overwhelmed when you can choose to feel "In demand" instead. Why be "stressed" when you could be "blessed"? Our words are so much more powerful than we think!  

    3. Move Our bodies
    When there's movement in our bodies, there's movement in our lives!

    4. Listen to Music
    Listening to music we love lowers our blood pressure and calms stress. Stress is what leads to inflammation and inflammation leads to all kinds of diseases.  

    5. Take Time to Play
    Yes, we all have responsibilities but we all NEED time to enjoy our lives...time to laugh...time to have fun. When is the last time you did something purely for the fun of it! Let's enjoy ourselves! 

    Friday, December 5, 2014

    Go Buddha GO! Tell Your Life Exactly What You Want! ROARRRRR!


    As practitioners of the Lotus Sutra, we chant the Mystic Law every single day. Intoning Nam-myoho-renge-kyo (which means: I fuse my life with the Mystic law of cause and effect through sound vibration) is a noble cause. It elevates our life condition, and the life condition and vibration of all of life. 
    We chant for ourselves. 
    We chant for others. 
    We chant for this life and this world. 
    We change our karma 
    for the sake of changing the whole world's karma.  
    We are the noble Boddhisatvas of the earth 
    and Votaries of the Lotus Sutra. 
    We TELL our lives what we want. 
    We do not ask for favors from a force outside of our lives. 
    We ARE Nam-myoho-renge-kyo! 
    We know that the goal of our practice is to have faith like flowing we chant every day, twice a day...we study...we encourage each other, introduce others and attend our SGI meetings. 

    And....Sometimes it seems like it is taking FOREVER for a benefit to come or an obstacle to go away, doesn't it? Even though we KNOW the answer lies within our own karma, and in doing our human revolution, sometimes we just have to get mad at our own life and wake those Shoten Zenjin UP!

    In the February Living Buddhism Magazine
    (published by the SGI-USA and available by calling 800-835-4558) one of my favorite Gosho passages appeared. In this Gosho, Nichiren Daishonin has been persecuted by the government and is being taken away to Tatsunokuchi Beach to be beheaded. On the way, he sees a statue of Hachiman, one of the Buddhist deities (which represent functions within our own lives). 

    He makes the entourage stop so he can address the statue. (The full quote is at the end of this blogpost)

    What I love about this moment in the Gosho is that he basically yells at the Buddhist God and says you had better show your support to me RIGHT NOW because that is the pledge you made. If I die I will report you! Get to work! Of course, after he yells at the statue, when Nichiren is taken to the beach to be beheaded, a huge orb comes out of the sky lighting up the faces of his would-be assassins, they all run scared, and he is saved from death. 

    Nichiren's indignant attitude when he addresses the statue shows us we can summon our anger at the forces within our life. We can all pray in front of our own Gohonzons with fury and with fire. 

    I just finished two and a half hours of Daimoku chanted with this kind of energy. As I was chanting I had this in mind: 

    PowerPrayer to MAKE IT HAPPEN!
    I kept this prayer in my mind while chanting...picturing the Shoten Zenjin rushing to my aid, the country's aid, and the world's aid right now!  
    By Jamie Lee Silver of

    Shoten Zenjin! 
    this HAS TO CHANGE NOW!!! 
    I Don't know HOW to make it happen. 
    I just know it HAS TO!!
    It is time for me to see results in this area. 
    I demand: _________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    We can all summon this fiery attitude at the crucial moment - we are ALL dignified votaries of the Lotus Sutra, we can all command the fundamental forces that are within our lives and represented on the Gohonzon. 

    Here is the Gosho passage: 

    Nichiren stops at the statue and shouts: 

    'Great Boddhisatva Hachiman, are you truly a god?...Now I, Nichiren, and the foremost votary of the Lotus Sutra in all of Japan, and am entirely without guilt. I have expounded the doctrine to save all the people of Japan from falling into the great citadel of the hell of incessant suffering for slandering the Lotus Sutra....When Shakyamuni Buddha expounded the Lotus Sutra, Many Treasures Buddha and the Buddhas and Boddhisatvas of the ten-directions gathered, shining like so many suns and moons, stars and mirrors. In the presence of the countless heavenly gods as well as the benevolent deities and sages of India, China and Japan. Shakyamuni Buddha urged each one to submit a written pledge to protect the votary of the Lotus Sutra at all times. Each and every one of you gods made this pledge. I should not have to remind you. Why do you not appear at once to fulfill your solemn oath? ....If I am executed tonight and go to the pure land of Eagle Peak, I will dare to report to Shakyamuni Buddha, the lord of teachings, that the Sun Goddess and Great Boddhisatva Hachiman are the deities who have broken their oath to him. If you feel this will go hard with you, you had better do something about it right away!' (WND - 1, 766-67)

    Wednesday, December 3, 2014

    Win by the End of the Year!

    I love the quote above. I resolve to be victorious! 

    Let's all resolve, 
    deeply resolve, 
    to be victorious by the end of the year! 

    I resolve: 

    I resolve to report Ben's incredible health improvement. 
    I resolve to report growth in my business...certainty, happiness, appreciation! 
    I resolve to report victory for my family members, for my son Aaron, for my sister, for us all. 
    I resolve to feel great and usher in the new year more healthy, more happy than ever before. 
    I resolve to walk or dance for 20 minutes every day.
    I resolve to overcome my identify them, chant about them and overcome them one by one! 
    I resolve to increase follow through in all areas of my life. 
    I resolve to be fear-less, clear and determined. 
    I resolve to have a clear list of goals and outcomes for the new year written by January 1st or earlier. 
    I resolve to make this list fun, exciting and invigorating! 
    I resolve to continue doing shakubuku every day!
    I resolve to chant a minimum of one hour every day and more whenever I can. 
    I resolve to chant three hours every weekend. 
    I resolve to show actual proof though my life every single day no matter what!

    What do you resolve? 
    What victory do you want to report by the end of the year? 

    Sunday, November 30, 2014

    9 ways to Jump Start Your New Buddhist Practice!

    Whether you are new to chanting, or revitalizing your practice - this blog is for you. You can use the points you like, and share the others with someone brand new to chanting. 

    It is true that: 
    By chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo you can transform all of your sufferings into benefit, and crystalize every desire into a blooming flower in our lives. You can become happier than you ever imagined...happier, more resourceful and more couraBygeous in taking action. 

    AND, you will make a difference in the lives of all you touch.  

    We can change anything through chanting because we tap into our inner realm of unlimited possibility when we chant. You are a Buddha of infinite potential! 

    When we chant the Mystic law we see changes in our life - whether we believe they will happen or not. Nam-myoho-renge-kyo means "I fuse my life with the mystic law of cause and effect through sound vibration" or, as some say "I tune my life to the rhythm of all life." Saying these words is a great cause that breaks through all suffering and creates a life of happiness. It works! 

    "Nam-myoho-renge-kyo is like the roar of a Lion." What sickness could therefore be an obstacle? 
    Nichiren Daishonin 

    9 Ways to Jump Start Your New Buddhist Practice!
    By Jamie Lee Silver from

    1. Make a list of what you really want in life. Take a fresh look at your desires and write them down.  Dream big. What do you really want? What do you want for yourself? What do you want for others? What do you want for the world? Make a list. Write it down and put the date on it. 

    Many people began chanting with desires that later transformed into other desires. So don't worry about whether your desires are "right" desires to have. Chanting is progressive, both you and your desires will evolve. I know people who began a very rewarding practice chanting for things that were important at the time, but later changed into other desires. 

    One of my friends chanted for a month to prove to his wife that this practice doesn't work. Well, he found out it DID work and more than 40 years later he is still practicing. In Nichiren Buddhism your desires ARE enlightenment. It is okay to desire whatever you desire, whether it's money, the happiness of someone else, a relationship, a job, or peace of mind and contentment. With continued practice you will see that your dreams for yourself actually become tied to the dreams of happiness for all. 

    Chant for what is really in your heart. 

    2. This is a great time to start a Journal.  It's not essential, but I think it's a great idea. Writing in a journal helps you become aware of your progress and benefits.

    3. Revitalize your altar if you have one. Make it clean, shiny, uncluttered and make sure there's fresh fruit on it! 

    If you are new to chanting: 
    Choose a place to chant comfortably. Find your "home" with your home, where you can feel comfortable chanting out loud, having a dialogue with your life itself.  Sit comfortably. (Did I say this enough times?! ~ I like to be comfortable!)

    4. If you are creating your sacred space choose a focus point on the wall. Some people start by facing a blank wall; I chanted to a moon in a picture. Choose a focal point slightly above eye level. 

    5. You may wish to have a small table nearby for tea or your journal. 

    6. Write the words Nam Myoho Renge Kyo 
    on a piece of paper. 

    The words are pronounced as follows: 

    Nam ~    Nahm, rhymes with Mom, 
    Myoho ~ meeyohoh,  
    Renge ~  rain gay, 
    Kyo ~     kee oh. 
    Nam Myoho Renge Kyo. 
    Nahm Meeyohoh Rain Gay Kee Oh
    (Phonetic spelling) 

    7. Begin to chant. Hold your hands with the palms facing in and touching each other in front of your heart. And say Nam-myoho-renge-kyo over and over and over again with your eyes OPEN looking at the wall. 

    8. At first, you will probably only be able to concentrate on the words themselves, and that's fine.  Once you've got the chant down you can think about what you want and chant at the same time. 

    9. Join fellow practitioners as soon as you can. The SGI Portal to the right will help you locate a center near you, and you can call that center to connect to your local meeting house. 

    Chant twice a day every day. Get in rhythm! Establishing a twice a day rhythm to your chanting is important. It gets the wheels of your life moving. 

    Keep your goals in mind and you’ll remember your reasons for chanting! 

    These words and this vibration go deep into the heart of your life itself. They summon forth your highest wisdom, vitality and sense of purpose. They also uproot the karma that is making you suffer, and give you the opportunity to change this karma forever. 

    When you chant you are entering into a dialogue with your life itself. You are not chanting to any god or asking for favors. Instead, you are connecting with the rhythm of the universe itself. 

    As Nichiren Daishonin says in the famous writing (Gosho) "On Attaining Buddhahood" :

    "If you wish to free yourself from the sufferings of birth and death you have endured since time beginning and to attain without fail unsurpassed enlightenment in this lifetime, you must perceive the mystic truth that is originally inherent in all living beings. This truth is Myoho-renge-kyo. Chanting Myoho-renge-kyo will therefore enable you to grasp the mystic truth innate in all life...It is called the mystic truth because it explains the mutually inclusive relationship of life and all phenomena. 
    "Life at each moment encompasses the body and mind and the self and environment of all sentient beings in the ten worlds, as well as all insentient beings in the three thousand realms, including plants, sky and earth, and even the most minute particles of dust. Life at each moment permeates the universe and is revealed in all phenomena. One awakened to this principle himself embodies this relationship. However, even though you chant and believe in Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, if you think the Law is outside yourself, you are embracing not the mystic law but some inferior teaching."
    From Lectures on Attaining Buddhahood in this Lifetime by Daisaku Ikeda, 2007