Friday, March 29, 2019

New Beginnings!

Hello, my friends. Thank you for writing to me and for keeping me in touch with what you are doing. 

I have some exciting news. For the past four months, I have been dedicating myself to learning from two excellent  Mentors of EFT, Emotional Freedom Techniques, Alina Frank and Craig Weiner, founders of EFT Tapping Training. I'll be a Certified EFT Practitioner by next week. I'm already helping people with Stress-Relief, Grief-Relief and Weight Loss.  

Every day I've been chanting for an hour to master EFT so I can help people gain freedom from the emotions and core beliefs that are running in the background of our lives like APPS. 

You know how it is. You KNOW not to do something. And even though you try your hardest, you do it anyway. Or there's that person who is not so great for you, but you can't seem to move on. Well EFT gently helps you release the emotions that have been in control...and when you release these emotions you have WISDOM and freedom to make new choices. You see things differently. Using EFT has profoundly changed my life. And the best thing about it - it's a self-help technique that I teach my clients to do. I'm a teacher! 

Over the past year, using EFT and chanting, I've released 35 pounds and am on my way to a new profession. 

But, it doesn't replace chanting. I still base my life around chanting. The Gohonzon is at the core of all the power in my life. I love the Gohonzon, this practice and the SGI with all my heart. becoming an EFT Practitioner is similar to becoming any type of professional. It is a career choice. 

Every day I greet the Buddhist gods on the Gohonzon 
with appreciation and have the Buddhas in every cell in my body spring into action for kosen rufu...for my own happiness and the happiness of the world. That's my starting prayer...feeling every cell wake up and say "YES!"

I've introduced my closest friend in St. Pete to this practice and she amazes me with her insights and wisdom. She is a licensed counselor and EFT Practitioner with a strong Buddhist practice. How awesome. 

So, I thought you might want to have an update. We've been through a lot together, haven't we? When I first started this blog I was heartbroken and depressed. My sweet Mom died that fall. And a few years later my sweet Boy Ben got sick. Many of you were chanting for Ben. When he became eternal I thought of all of you first, and was determined to turn poison into medicine to show you that death doesn't have to mean defeat. 

Those prayers resulted in my first book "Our Forever Ben, One Mom's Letters to Her Son-in-Spirit and his poetic replies." (Available on Amazon.) I'm enjoying doing grief relief work for individuals and groups. Such fulfilling work!  

And here I am. In July it will have been four years. We're deep into the planning of the Fourth Annual Bens Memorial Mile Family Festival and Running Gala on June 15th in Downers Grove, Illinois outside of Chicago. We have raised more than 50K for Schizophrenia research and suicide prevention. You'll find a lot of cool things at including his music and the film made for him by Aaron. Join us in any way you wish!

My amazing son Aaron is in his last year of residency in Phoenix. He's been a doctor for three years now and he's flourishing with a strong Buddhist practice as a Vice District Leader. I'm so proud. 

And I'm still living on St. Pete Beach, enjoying every moment. I'm in the process of building a new website, and launching a new blog called 

You are always free to write to me at 
Please remember that I do not give guidance of any kind. I will direct you to your local senior leaders. It's just best that way. They are there for you and fostering relationships with them is better for you. 

(If you are interested in knowing more about their classes in EFT you can click on their link at the bottom to find out about EFT trainings near you:

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Fresh Determinations for a Power-Full New Year!

Happy New Year!

I'm still here! I'm chanting and refreshing my vow and determinations every day in front of my Gohonzon. 

I have many determinations for the new year. And yes, some of them are determinations that I continue to make every year. But as my mentor, Amos Snell always asked "How many times do you have to remake a determination? 365 times a year!" I might also add, every second of every day!

So I have new determinations and I'm celebrating the successes of 2018. (I lost 30 pounds - very happy about that! I made many friends, and much more) 

My shakubuku is doing great. She just passed her year Gohonzon Birthday and she continues to amaze me with the depths of her wisdom and her seeking mind to study. From the beginning, she felt the Buddhas and Boddhisatvas in the Gohonzon and in her life through her prayers while chanting.  And she has refreshed my spirit to commune with them in prayer every morning and evening. 

I chant to feel all the Buddhas on the Gohonzon, and in the Universe and in my Being expressing themselves through each of my cells - so that I can fulfill my vow for kosen-rufu -(world peace through the full expression of my life force). 

Danny Nagashima was recently here, and he impressed on me the value of chanting with my vow each and every day. 

As I feel these powerful Buddhas rejoicing during my daimoku, I am connected to all that is good and right and feels so good. I chant in appreciation - and to expand my appreciation every day. I chant to quiet my critical mind, and bring forth my appreciative spirit! 

For New Year's Gongyo my shakubuku and I did Toban at the Tampa Bay Center from 9:00 am until 12:00 noon. It was a great way to start the new year. 
And I re-heard a prayer I've re-incorporated into my chanting: 

"Chant for the wisdom that functions in accordance with changing circumstances." 
I believe this is a quote from Daisaku Ikeda but I did not catch the reference to site for you. 

How deep, how profound. 

In each moment, how do we know what to do, how to act, how to feel, think etc? 
Somehow we must trust our own lives, the purpose-full source and flow of our beings, and direct that flow while allowing for unexpected and delightful surprises. Channeling it all through our vow and prayers each morning and evening makes for the riches of lives! 

Last night I flowed into a most inspiring and unexpected concert right here on the beach. True musicianship expressed through friendship. It was deeply uplifting. Tonight I'm bringing my friends to see these same musicians at another venue. They are only in town for the weekend. Enjoying our lives is one of the other things Danny Nagashima always mentions! 

For this year, I am determined to earn my Certification as an EFT Tapping Professional. As some of you know, I've been Tapping since 2012, and used this form of energy clearing - acupuncture without needles, for clearing stuck emotion (energy) and creation of cognitive change ~ throughout my son's illness and my healing from his death. 

Tapping and Chanting have been the cornerstones of my life. Chanting first. And using Tapping every day as well. 

I'm thrilled to have found mentors and a program to bring me to official certification through the Association for the Advancement of Meridian Energy Techniques. 

I will not be licensed, and I will work with people on the emotions behind whatever is causing their suffering - (grief, pain, fear), in conjunction with licensed health professionals. 

My goal is to complete my 50 practice Tapping sessions and the other requirements within six months or sooner, and to find a job that will support me as I do this. 

I hope you are starting the year strong and well. I have many health determinations as well. 

Let's win together along with our mentor in faith Daisaku Ikeda! 

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Lighting the Lamp of Hope from Florida !

This egret is walking along St. Pete Beach on a beautiful day recently. I think he was posing for me. 

On Sunday I went to my local SGI Center and chanted for 4 hours for the Lions of Justice Festival, 50K youth gathering across America on September 23rd. 
I chanted for the youth of the world to realize their power to make the world a better place...and to be happy...
I chanted...
...for all the youth who are going to the festival to have a breakthrough in their lives...
...for all who registered to overcome obstacles and be able to attend...
...for safety, great weather, and operations to go smoothly...
...for all who are supporting and chanting for this festival to have breakthroughs...
...for every member everywhere to feel an incredible connection to the power within their own lives when chanting to the Gohonzon...
...and to have conviction in my own Buddha Nature... 

It's been a while since I chanted that much daimoku at one time. I sat right up front and supported the people who were leading the chanting. I love doing that...listening to their rhythm, and expanding it.

And, of course, yesterday, Monday, I was energetic and focused. I launched a project at work involving teamwork and leadership...and it flowed naturally. Later this week, on my birthday, I'm going to my High School reunion feeling healthy and happy with that Florida Glow. 

When we chant for others we are also chanting for ourselves. We are all interconnected. We are all one being. When we chant for those who are giving us problems in life, we are opening our channels of compassion and expanding our capacity to feel joy, love, and happiness. Who can you chant for? How can we each expand our capacity to love and be loved? 

No matter where you are in life, or what's happening, you can always launch a new rocket of hope into your life. Chanting nam-myoho-renge-kyo infused your life with the life of the universe...and chanting is YOURS. For FREE. 

Join with your fellow SGI members, make a fresh determination. Refuse to give in to ANYTHING that is getting you down. Your life IS the Buddha. Chant to feel this with your life at every moment. Let's all be radiantly happy and victorious together! 

"Nam-myoho-renge-kyo is like the roar of a lion. What sickness can therefore be an obstacle?" 

Nichiren Daishonin. From the Gosho Reply to Kyo'o

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Great Insights from Kate Randolph

My Dear friend Kate

Hello, my friends! Thanks for all the emails prodding me back into writing. You have always been on my mind! 

I'm sitting here in paradise on St. Pete Beach with a few moments on my hands because I'm off work today. I have a great full-time job helping families go through the difficult maze of figuring out the best place for their loved one to live when they can no longer take care of themselves. I enjoy giving people hope, changing the lives of seniors, and infusing love into my community.

There's so much to share! Ben's Memorial Mile ( took place in June with hundreds of attendees running, walking, playing and having fun in my son Ben's name. We are about to reach our goal of contributing $50,000 for research to cure schizophrenia, and taking concrete action to prevent suicide through "Hope for the Day." We're already planning an amazing event in Downers Grove, Illinois, USA next June. I'll keep you posted. 

And, many of you know that Kate Randolph is battling the same kind of cancer that just killed John McCain, a glioblastoma brain tumor. Kate was diagnosed right after we went to the Florida Nature Culture Center together in November of 2017. She's challenging three hours of daimoku (chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo) a day, and is fighting a fierce battle. 

The other day I reached her in LA and she had important words for all for us when I told her about a goal I'm determined to reach. Kate said: 

"There's only one thing you need to do. 
There's only one prayer you need to have. Along with chanting for the youth of the world and the 50K Lions of Justice Festivals in America and around the world, 

Chant for 
absolute and total conviction
 in your Buddha Nature

and everything you want will fall in line. 
Don't keep searching for what you desire - 
use this prayer, use the power of your daimoku. 
Pray that THIS TIME you are changing your karma forever...for you, for your parents, 
for your descendants. 
Pray that THIS PRAYER changes your karma forever."

Let that sink in! 

I'll tell you it's a challenge. When I'm chanting I latch onto that prayer, and I'm quickly pulled off of it by some distraction (fundamental darkness) in my mind. But it's real. And powerful. It takes strong determination to stay on this prayer...and let other prayers bubble up...for my family, my coworkers, the youth of the world. It's a daily challenge to keep praying while chanting - not just letting my mind wander and wondering about stuff. But that's where the magic is...the sustained launching of our prayer on the wings of Daimoku.  

I hope this post finds you well...and that you keep strong determination. As Nichiren Daishonin states in the Gosho Letter to Nikke, 
"Chanting nam-myoho-renge-kyo is like the roar of a lion. What sickness can, therefore, be an obstacle?"

Whatever you are facing don't give up. Don't give up! We are here for a reason. We chose this life. We even chose our problems. In the August 17th World Tribune on page 7, Daisaku Ikeda, my mentor in life, quotes the words of the Argentine poet Almafuerte: 

"Sometimes a great destiny sleeps to be awakened by anguish."
He goes on to say: 
"Buddhism teaches that suffering is the springboard to enlightenment. No one is free from problems and worries - nor is any family or region. 
"Life is a struggle against problems. What's important is how we solve the problems that weigh down on us. We need to call forth all our wisdom and make repeated efforts to overcome those problems and reach the victory that lies beyond them. 
"Dreaming about what life might be like if only you didn't have any problems is just an escape from reality into a fantasy realm. It only leads to defeat in life. People who are always making positive efforts, thinking about how to overcome each problem and transform it into a source of value and victory are the winners in life. 
"Your resolve determines your life. I hope you will all be great actors in your own dramas of victory, brilliantly proving this truth, and be people who encourage and impart self-confidence to everyone around you."

Yes! Write that drama brilliantly! Smile and carry on! Chant and study and encourage your fellow members! Sending love to you!

You can always reach me at  I love to hear about your victories, and I publish some experiences here on the blog. Please don't write to me for guidance. Your local leaders are there for you, know you, and are chanting for you. They are the best people to help you challeng your sproblems. If you aren't connected to the SGI please go to and it will lead you to links. 

Monday, April 30, 2018

Change Your Attitude ~ Change Your Life!

Greetings from St. Pete Beach Florida with another beautiful sunset.
Thank you so much for your patience! I know it's been ages since I wrote something new for you from the heart. 

And, you're probably asking, what IS the key to changing our lives, Jamie? We know to chant, we know to do shakubuku, we know to study and encourage others, but what if a problem is just staying stuck, and we can't find a way out through our determined prayer? 

I faced such a moment about a month ago, regarding a situation I was in, where I REALLY THOUGHT it was the other people's fault. I knew THEY were the ones causing my suffering. (Even though, as a Buddhist, I know I create my own life, and it's a reflection of me - it really felt as if THIS problem was coming from the outside) Exactly. 

Well, thank goodness for the Buddhist concept of getting guidance. I made a call to one of my local leaders and requested guidance. She, in all her wisdom, connected me to a region leader whom I'd not met yet, and we got together at the center. It was a good meeting and we established a friendship, and she said I could call anytime. 

Establishing friendships with our senior leaders right where we are is crucial. That's why, when you write to me for guidance, I ask you to consult with your local leaders. They are there for you! Please reach out to them. They can help you challenge your problems. 

We are responsible for building these relationships through daimoku and action. We can chant to connect with a leader who inspires us. 

So, when push came to shove and my suffering over this situation was growing, I reached out to this region leader and she gently reminded me that whatever I was feeling, any suffering and frustration, was already in my life due to causes I made in the past, and the ONLY way to change the situation was to chant to change my attitude. My attitude. Yikes. I've been chanting for 33 years, and I still need these reminders from time to time, right? 

So the next morning, I woke up and chanted as if to draw fire from wet stone. I chanted that this daimoku today was changing my attitude, and I pondered what the word attitude really means. I chanted to change my energy, and to turn all my anger into love and appreciation. I scanned my body in my mind and chanted to change every cell in my body...every attitude about this problem from within. I chanted to open myself to a new possibility, and for my daimoku to have immediate results as the people around me felt my new heart, my new attitude and I proved the power of this incredible law once again! 

And, from that moment forth (hon nim myo) everything changed. Daimoku is that powerful! They DID feel my heart. Everything improved. And I started winning again, not whining! 

So now, with every problem or challenge I face, I am chanting to change my attitude...and I feel the richness and the depth of the power of Chanting nam-myoho-renge-kyo deepening more and more! 

I'm chanting, as we all are, for the youth of the world, and here in America I'm seeing the results. 

And May 3rd is only a few days away. Let's each challenge a breakthrough! Let me hear from you at Share your breakthroughs! 

Monday, April 23, 2018

Experience from Neelam Kumar, author of "To Cancer, With Love"

Experience—March 2018, Zadenkai

(As I publish this blog tonight, Neelam's mother has been very ill. 
Please join me in chanting for Neelam's Mother's full recovery (Jamie) 

Two years back, I was at the peak of my life’s contentment. I had faced the struggles of 23 years of widowhood bravely; had completed my duties of getting my 2 children married off; had spent more than two decades in a top position in a top company and had written 5 popular fiction books. I was all set to sit back and heave a sigh of relief when Cancer struck me with a vengeance a 2nd time.
 I must admit, lying alone on that cold hospital stretcher, I asked myself whether there was really any purpose left to my life.  With my doting husband gone, nobody actually needed me anymore.
Under attack, my weak body collapsed, but my spirit, forged in the fire of 12 years of Buddhist practice soared high, bright and resilient. The first decision I made was an important one. I would live--joyously and meaningfully. The second decision: I would cling to the Gosho and chant daimoku with  “ a never-say-die attitude” to get clarity of why I had been spared.
Disappointed at not finding any “happy literature” on Cancer in India, I simply decided to write one to cheer myself up. To my surprise, that book, “To Cancer, With Love—My Journey of Joy” zoomed up to become a bestseller, emerging as India’s 1st joyous book on Cancer. More importantly, readers from all over the world began contacting me and telling me how my words had given them hope, courage and the strength to fight on.
I was taken aback by readers’ response. Cancer fighters began reaching out to me to say what a hellish state they felt they were in.
At that time I came across Sensei’s guidance: “The world of Hell is a state in which life is itself painful; where anything you see makes you feel miserable. Such people need someone—anyone—to be at their side. They need someone who will be there for them, to listen and offer even just a few words of encouragement.”  I decided I would be that person. And would use each dialogue as an opportunity to talk about Buddhism.
I had no hair, no eyelashes, no eyebrows, but to my surprise, at that juncture, I suddenly became famous! I began to be approached by newspapers and magazines for interviews. To my horror, even while I was shuddering inside like a coward at this wave of public adulation, people actually started celebrating me as a symbol of courage! I took a deep breath, chanted soundlessly and smiled. So, Gohonzon… this is the role you have in mind for me, I asked?  But I needed the strength of the strongest armor to cloak me.
So I plunged myself into my Practise. I launched on my 7th million daimoku; never missed my gongyo even on crazily busy days; woke up early to pack in at least an hour of chanting before leaving for work; home visited and shaku bukud with immense vigour, focused on winning in all the campaigns and targets Sensei set for us. I backed all this up with solid Study, not missing a single meeting. The Block in which I was earlier, became a Shinichi district and I began to be called “Shaku buku Queen.” I do not remember a day when I have missed reading the Gosho. I am now on the second reading of Gosho 1 and Gosho 2.
Emboldened by the success of my book, I decided to write India’s first Graphic Novel—comic book--on Cancer that would cater to our rushed, deadline-driven times of short attention spans. When I learnt that the funds to create it were unaffordable, I left it to Gohonzon. Sure enough, mystically, 2 Indian legends-Mr Ratan Tata and Mr Amitabh Bachchan stepped forward to praise my writing, to fund it and ensure that I wrote my comic book for these grim times when India is sitting on a Cancer time bomb. The funds were so generous that I wrote not one but 3 books on Cancer.
What was so special about them? The fact that in each book I have described how my faith in Nichiren Buddhism has helped me overcome the doctors’ diagnosis. This, I told Gohonzon are my kosen rufu books.
The Daishonin has assured us that when we concentrate on kosen rufu, benefits pour into our lives from thousands of miles away. 
Sure enough, benefits flooded in.
In October 2017, my 88 year old mother was handed back to me from ICU. I was told that I must take her home as her crater-like, pus filled bedsore was untreatable and would not make her last more than 48 hours. I nursed her at home, pouring daimoku into her wound. 5 months later, today, her bedsore is completely gone and she is better than ever.
I began to be invited to give Motivational Talks at hitherto unimaginable places—fancy corporates, institutes and organizations. And, pumped on the power of hours of daimoku, each time I would launch on my favorite topic,  Buddhism, the moment the audience asked me—So how did you get the courage to face it?
My big benefit was, receiving a personal message from Sensei for my books.
And then came the awards—all from unimaginable places.
1.The very Convent School that had labelled me as “Wood Sitting on Wood” and predicted I would never learn the English language honored me with a Trophy for being an Outstanding Alumni.
2. The Nargis Dutt Memorial Trophy for outstanding work in the field of creating cancer awareness through my books has been another surprise.
3. This month, 2 significant awards have come my way—the Inspiring Indian Woman Award 2018 from IIW, London as well as Glenmark’s  V Wash 2018 Woman of the Year award for changing the narrative of Cancer in India from grimness to hope.
I must admit, I asked Gohonzon one day, I wish I was my younger, pretty self. I would have looked nice receiving these awards. That day I read Sensei’s words, “There is no retirement age in faith.”  Nichiren Daishonin has said about those who embrace the Mystic Law, “You will grow younger and your good fortune will accumulate.”
That day, a big company approached me for a few shots they wanted to take of me on Madh Island. I embraced the excitement of being made up and clothed by a stylist, of being asked to pose on a boat and the beach. I sank into the warm feeling of being pampered like a star.
Last week I woke up to pictures of me perched atop Bangalore’s MG Road. The 30 by 20 hoarding says—“When Cancer visited me a second time, I pulled out the mightiest weapon—my pen”
Had I ever imagined that I would be modelling at my age? That people would actually look at my photo shopped face and say—you look so pretty. And better—so young!

My heart is filled with gratitude as I realize that actually this phase of my life is not mine at all. It is for those countless Indians who draw strength from just looking at me and label me as Inspirational. This phase of my life is my actual Kosen rufu phase. In these grim times when 1,500 Indians are succumbing to Cancer each day, I am so grateful for getting the opportunity to touch a million lives with my written and spoken words and shine the powerful beacon of hope, courage and joy embodied in Buddhism into their lives.
Finally, the hurt of my 3 younger devars dispossessing me of our ancestral home after I was widowed, is healing. Finally, I am NEEDED. The stage is my entire country; its inhabitants are my kosen rufu family.
Dear Cancer, thank you for visiting me twice and revealing to me my mission in this life.
Dear Gohonzon, now I realise why my life has been spared. Thank you for giving me an opportunity to turn “poison into medicine.”
Dear Sensei, as you turn 90, I realise the magnitude of the kosen rufu I must do through my life to become your worthy disciple.
I determine to use my pen, my words, my body and each remaining breath for the eternal honor of spreading kosen rufu.
Ikeda Sensei says, “May you live in such a way
That others will say,
“She is a woman who, though ordinary,
Somehow stands out,
And has a beautiful story to tell.”

Thank you!
Neelam Kumar

Monday, April 16, 2018

Wisdom For Our TIme ~ Nam-myoho-renge-kyo

News from Our Kate  
Thank you for writing to me. Thank you for telling me how much these posts mean to you. I am beginning to blog again. Remember you can always look through the archives for PowerPrayers and inspiration.  

I am about to return to St. Pete from a trip to see Aaron in Phoenix and Kate Randolph in LA. Kate is now a year and a half into her brain tumor diagnosis and she is doing great! Three hours of daimoku a day really is helping her life-condition and her health. I wrote the following blog post last year, but I promise I will write again soon!

Kate's 40 year anniversary of practicing was last August. She has reached many of her personal goals, producing and staring in many plays, creating a sought-after arts program within the Los Angeles County school district, and having a wonderful relationship with her husband Hal, (who is a brilliant teacher)  and daughter Sarah, who recently graduated from Soka University of America.  

Kate's life condition is sky high and she has this wisdom for you. 

Kate says: "NOW is the time to wake up to joy. Now, more than ever, SGI members need to summon joy, forget complaining about anything, and wear a radiant smile on our faces. She says our smiles must radiate so brightly that light comes out of our fingertips and we glow as beacons so people can learn of the mystic law, Nam-myoho-renge-kyo from us, and be moved to happiness just by being in our presence.
 She says we must have joy to show the possibilities of life...JOY is a REQUIREMENT, not an afterthought, and it comes from our determination to summon it from within our lives and express it in our smiles, the pep in our step, and our lives themselves. We can do this! We can do this for ourselves, and by doing this we change the world." 

Kate echoed something I've said for years,  "Our smile is a cause, not an effect." we can't sit around waiting for joy to come into our lives. We must be joyful, and invite more. That's how it works! 

She said: "Joy's the leading edge. Wake up and be joyful, smile at the person next to you in bed, smile at the person next to you at the store, in the elevator, and at other drivers. BE Kosen-rufu in action!" 

"It's gotta be real, but you can also fake it till you make it. Put that smile on your face and you will spark your happiness. Try to be sad with a huge grin. It doesn't work so well!

Kate said "We have to go deeper into our own lives, and into the Buddha we are every day. We've gotta do this NOW. This is it. This is our time. We're ALIVE! whether we are 17 or 95. Grab the moment for all it's got and say "I am creating the deepest value that's ever been created. NOW. Right this moment. There's no other moment. here's no other person. How are we influencing the person next to is our SMILE...beaming with joy...Joy!"

She said: "Stop complaining. NOW. It must be replaced, even if it's phony at first. It may feel phony but it will cause a shift inside your life.  And we have to keep going deeper and deeper into joy. There can't be a place at which we stop. we need constant movement...constantly going deeper." 

President Ikeda says:

"The relationships we have with people are a direct reflection of our inner state of life. To extend and deepen our human relationships is to expand our state of life."

Daisaku Ikeda, from, under Relationships