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I've heard from some of you lately who are very sad and suffering, disappointed and losing hope. You are not alone. And you can rise above this and change your karma - right here and right now.
As Daisaku Ikeda writes:
The course of our lives is determined by how we react - what we decide and what we do - at the darkest of times. The nature of that response determines a person's true worth and greatness.
I was in an extreme place of sadness when I started this blog, and there is one important thing I realized that I really want you to understand too.
It is true, that my suffering was triggered by an event in my life. This can't be denied. But somewhere in the depths of my life I knew that the tears I was shedding were WITHIN my life, and had always been within my life. These were not new feelings of despair. Yes, they were intensified by my recent event, but I realized that I had carried these feelings INTO this life.
I realized that this sadness was my karma. But in Nichiren Daishonin's Buddhism that doesn't mean what it means in other forms of Buddhism.
Karma in some sects means something you have to ENDURE, in others, it's something you have to LEARN FROM. and In Nichiren Buddhism, also known as SGI Buddhism, (also known as Practical Buddhism ~ where we chant the name of the Mystic Law - Nam-myoho-renge-kyo), Karma is something that we can change, in fact, it is our MISSION to change our karma.
7 Steps to Changing Our Karma
by Jamie Lee Silver of Chantforhappiness.com.
Please do not cut and paste. Please do share the post using the links at the bottom.
1. Recognize Karma for what it is...
...and do not complain. Complaining only erodes your benefits. Karma is an opportunity. Not a thing to blame yourself for, or to feel bad about. It's a challenge to surmount!
Whatever you are suffering from is a powerful source for you to prove the power of this practice
2. Make a fierce determination to change your karma, and take the actions to change it.
Chant to root the cause of your suffering FOREVER OUT OF YOUR LIFE.
CHANT TO EXPERIENCE LIFE AS THE BUDDHA YOU ARE! CHANT TO USE YOUR VICTORY TO INSPIRE OTHERS!
Many of you have written that you just can't chant, you can't go to meetings, you're too depressed and too busy. Somehow, you just have to overcome this through sheer determination. That's why we have our wonderful organization, the Soka Gakkai. It is entirely up to you! Your friends in faith are waiting to hear from you, chant with you, win with you. Connect to the SGI (use the link sgi-usa.org). And call your SGI friends. I have always chanted to make strong friends in faith who inspire me. You can do this too, and go to them for guidance.
3. Take action.
In my case, almost 6 years ago, I formed a connection with a strong and inspiring member and we determined to chant two hours a day "together" to change our karma. Sometimes we chanted in the same room, sometimes by phone or text. We didn't always chant at the exact same time, but somehow, knowing we had the shared commitment was very important. Also, take concrete action. Chant for wisdom, and take the actions that arise from your prayers.
4. Be consistent. Practice correctly.
I know, I know, I say this all the time because it is really important. Go to meetings, study the writings of Nichiren Daishonin and Daisaku Ikeda, and introduce others to the practice.
5. Realize that obstacles will arise.
Don't let them stop you.
Chant through your tears. Chant through your tears. A leader once told me that Every tear cried in front of the Gohonzon is a diamond in your life. Keep Chanting through your tears. Don't stop! Embrace it. Get out the tissues and get that karma out of your life, not just for you, but for the generations ahead of you!
6. Don't give up.
Whatever you do, don't give up.
Do whatever you have to do to keep going. Karma changing doesn't usually happen overnight. Call on your friends. Start a journal. Realize that what you are doing is REALLY important.
7. WIN and share your Victory with others!
Document your experience. Write down the challenges you have faced and how you overcame them through chanting. Write down the quotes and guidance that inspired you.
We would all love to hear your victories. You can share them on Chantforhappiness.com. Just send a picture, a little about yourself - where you live, how long you've been practicing, and your experience to firstname.lastname@example.org.