Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Powerfully Turning Karma into Mission

Every step 
you take forward 
provides the path 
for others to follow  

We have such an opportunity to help others when we realize, truly realize, that we own our present sufferings, and that by embracing them, changing them by intoning the powerful vibration of Nam-myoho-renge-kyo, and challenging ourselves in assiduous practice and study ~ then we CAN and WILL change our sufferings into benefits for ourselves and others.   

It is truly a glorious mission 
that we have...
that we chose...
that we have the opportunity to challenge every day. 

Of course we can decide not to own our karma. We can keep blaming other people, or blaming the world and blaming our jobs. We can deflect our karma outside of us. If we blame and complain we will never change our lives. Now, if your heart is full of this type of complaint, you probably would not be reading this blog at this moment. No. You are reading this because you are ready to transform your suffering. 

As Guy McCloskey wrote in his article "Overcoming Suffering" published in the Sept-Oct Living Buddhism in 2010 (page 31):

"Although we may think no one else could be suffering to the extent that we are  ~ whether from depression, migraine headaches, cancer, AIDS or any number of other ailments ~ the fact is that there are millions of people with the same level of physical and emotional pain.

In the same article McCloskey quotes President Ikeda:

"Our actions in challenging our destiny become examples and inspiration for countless others. 
In other words, when we change our karma into mission, we transform our destiny from playing a negative role to a positive one. Those who change their karma into mission have "voluntarily assumed the appropriate karma." Therefore those who keep advancing, while regarding everything as part of their mission proceed toward the goal of transforming their destiny." (Living Buddhism, August 2003, p.14.

This doesn't mean that we just accept suffering as a state of life without a passion for overcoming it. As Nichiren Buddhists we do not believe in the inherent nobility of suffering, or that we should all become great sufferers. No. The point is to overcome our suffering, and elevate it to a mission, maybe even an honor, maybe even something we can appreciate along the way for helping us forge our brilliant and strong selves. 

That is what I did with my goal to lose weight. Some of you know that I was heavy most of my life, and lost and gained many pounds over the years, but kept a fierce 

Mission Power Prayer: 

I WILL WIN OVER THIS KARMA. I will transform my own suffering into a benefit so that I can show OTHERS THAT THIS PRACTICE WORKS, and that anyone can make the impossible possible.
No matter how long it takes, I will win! 

And I have won. I have transformed in many other ways as I have permanently lost over 50 pounds. I have increased my self esteem and my health has improved. I have strengthened my life force through this prayer. 

In the same article, Guy McCloskey quotes President Ikeda again:

"This is not just a matter of mere outlook. Changing the world starts by changing our fundamental state of mind, which is a key Buddhist principle. A powerful determination to transform even negative karma into mission can dramatically transform the real world. By changing our inner state of mind, we can change any suffering or hardship into a source of joy, regarding it as a means for forging and developing our lives. 
"To turn even sorrow into a source of creativity ~ that is the way of life of a Buddhist. Nichiren Daishonin teaches us this essential path through his own life and actions as the votary of the Lotus Sutra." (June 2005 Living Buddhism, pp. 39-40) 

And Mr. McCloskey concludes:

"If I'm going to suffer anyhow, then I will make it meaningful by transforming my suffering and helping others overcome their suffering.

Precisely. This is the way of the Buddha, and the way to overcome your suffering and help others overcome theirs. Each of us is a pioneer in this land. We are each noble votaries of the Lotus Sutra. We are each Buddhas with our own missions.  

When you face your Gohonzon every day realize that your mission is deep, grand, and powerful. 

I deeply salute you, my fellow travelers in VICTORY. 


  1. I am fighting for kosen rufu alongside my mentor.....i have a strong ichinen now......i will be positive and love all....thanks for the lovely inspiring post....thanks for reminding my enamored ANGEL...!!!!

  2. ROCK AND ROLL! You are on one, a great cosmic roll!

  3. Thank you so much for your kind and thoughtful comments. They mean so much to me. I am always chanting for the reader of this blog and am determined to write blog posts that inspire you!

  4. Great article, thank you! I'm sharing it with a new member near me in London. All the best, let's win! ����

  5. Thabkyou so much Sunshine. Your articles always direct me with eite kind of prayers .. U have actually converted your karma into mission.. I always imbibe them nalso share with new members.