Friday, July 5, 2013

Outstanding Disciples - The Key to Happiness and Meaning

What does it mean to be an outstanding disciple? 

Many of us have heard of the Mentor Disciple Relationship and we understand it in different ways. How can it help you to become happy and infuse your life with meaning? Can the Mentor Disciple relationship do this? 

Well, the answer for me is yes, but it takes focus and concentration. And Work. And a Vow. All the things it takes to develop the mentor disciple relationship are also the things that give life meaning and bring happiness. 

First I'll share a quote from Faith in Action about Mr. Toda and Mr. Makiguchi. I've been thinking about them all week, and just marveling about having the kind of conviction that you are willing to go to JAIL for your beliefs in order to inspire those in the future, and really make a difference in the world. This takes extraordinary guts and conviction.

Here is President Ikeda's quote: 

"When Mr. Toda was released from prison, the Soka Gakkai was left with only a handful of members. Even before the war, the membership had stood at only about 3,000. The organization's presence in Japanese society was, therefore, minuscule. Nevertheless, Mr. Toda characterized President Makiguchi as "a great man of global stature." And he encouraged us to be aware that we are disciples of this outstanding individual. Nobility is the mark of a true disciple. And Mr. Toda was an example of an exceptional disciple." 

Daisaku Ikeda, Faith in Action, page 231

In my opinion the mentor disciple relationship is self generated. It doesn't just happen, you have to search for it, understand it and internalize it. And when you do gain the understanding you do become proud and noble, and your faith becomes like the fly on the tail of the horse...

Okay, if the mentor disciple relationship needs to be generated from the disciple ~ how do you do it? 

For me, it starts with study. I read President Ikeda's words every single day. And I chant about what I read. I also chant to see with Daisaku Ikeda's eyes, to chant with the same conviction her has. I literally chant to have my daimoku be as strong and as far reaching as his...for my daimoku itself to become 10,000 times stronger, and develop my faith that much deeper. I chant to share his heart for humankind and kosen-rufu. I chant to develop as wise a life. 
I don't "worship" him, I aim to emulate and understand his heart. And this has had a profound effect on my faith, my happiness and my life. I chant for my every action to make him proud, and for all the words I write to resonate - and be the words he might say too. 
And I am so grateful I was born at this time, with him, and with YOU, so we can carry out kosen rufu together! 

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