Tuesday, June 24, 2014

11 Tips for Terrific Tosos (How to Chant Joyfully for Longer Times)

Sometimes SGI Buddhists like to chant for longer times. No one has to do this, or is expected to chant a toso. But sometimes we just want to! No one will ever judge you if you don't want to join in, but we will support you if you do. 
A group of us are gathering at my house to chant from 5:00 until 8:00 tomorrow evening. Wonderful! 

When I first began chanting a leader told me our lives and our karma can be compared to a glass with dirt at the bottom. The dirt represents the karma that exists inside our lives. She said when you start to chant you stir up that dirt and see it swirling around...and if you want to really dig deep and clear it out, you might want to chant a Daimoku Toso (chant Nam-myoho-renge-kyo for an hour or longer) and to set a goal with specific time targets to chant per day...to do a Million Daimoku Campaign we call it. 

A reader requested I share some ideas about chanting joyfully, and with concentration - especially since so many of you are challenging yourselves to chant for longer periods of time. Thank you for asking.

Please do not copy and paste the 11 Powerful Tips. Please share by sending the chantforhappiness.com url or using the share buttons at the bottom of the post. Thank you! Jamie

11 Powerful tips:
How to Joyfully Chant for Longer Times.
Toso Power! 
From Chantforhappiness.com by Jamie Lee Silver

1. Realize that what you are about to do...chanting longer than usual ~ doing a Daimoku Toso (The word "Toso" is usually used for chanting periods of one hour or longer)  - has profound significance for your life. Give yourself credit for this worthy goal.  

2. Write your goal or goals. (Some of these goals may occur to you naturally as you're chanting) Write yourself a Power Prayer (fresh determination) connected to the greater good...to the real difference you want to make in the world. 

Remember that you are a precious votary of the Lotus Sutra and when you break through, the energy is forever changed. You are paving the way for others to break through ~ Your Happiness is IMPORTANT! 

So address that in your goals and in your chanting For example: 

"I am determined to have the most beautiful, loving relationship so that I can totally inspire other people that great relationships are possible ...I can show actual proof with my life, and be able to introduce others to this practice!

President Ikeda's guidance says you can chant to have 10,000 times more power in your prayer. So I usually dedicate some time to chanting to increase the power of my daimoku by 10,000 times! 

3. Have your favorite drinks close by...tea...water...soft drinks...whatever you like. 

4. DEMAND your results! YOU are the Buddha! Do not beg favors from a 'higher power." Remember the Gohonzon cannot get down off the scroll and do the Buddha's work in the world. YOU actually are the Gohonzon; it is inside your life. The scroll is a reflection of the highest life condition that exists within your own life. So when you are chanting CLAIM what is yours! Yes, the Gohonzon consists of the functions in the universe that are in our lives. Tell your life what you want. 

5. All change comes from within. Take responsibility for your life...not blame. Realize whatever you are going through, whatever is causing you to chant...it's your karma..not your FAULT. Chant to reach the very core of that karma and root it out forever. THEN your life circumstances and environment will change to reflect it. You don't have to figure out the deeper cause, don't worry about getting it right. Chanting is experiential, not an intellectual exercise.  

6. Keep your favorite study material close by...whatever touches your heart when you read it. And if you find yourself losing focus open it up to any page you want. I have "For Today and Tomorrow" next to me right now. I just opened it for you right now...I read "When we chant sonorous daimoku, the sun rises in our hearts. We are filled with power. Compassion wells forth. Our lives are lit with joy. Our wisdom shines. All Buddhas and Buddhist deities throughout the universe go to work on our behalf. Life becomes exhilarating." Read your passage and get right back to chanting!!!

7. Invite others to chant with you!

8. Have pen and paper handy. You'll want to write down those brilliant ideas that come into your mind while you're chanting. You'll also want to write down some of those pesky thoughts and reminders that keep coming back...things like "remember to buy dog food." Just write it down and eject it from your brain so you can focus on what really matters.

9. Put your telephone away. Tell people you are busy. 

10. After you chant write in your journal. Write to me too. I love to hear your successes and your challenges. I will only share your victories with your permission! Write me at Chantforhappiness.@gmail.com. 

11. Some obstacles might arise after your toso. And just say "Hello obstacles! I was expecting you!" When you take on the mission to change your karma for yourself and others you can compare it to turning your speedboat to HIGH. The faster you go, the more resistance you feel. 

Above all - Don't give up! You CAN change your problems into benefits. You ARE the Buddha! 

I am chanting for you to accomplish your goals and shine with happiness. 

If you are using the PowerPrayers please let me know how they are working for you! Email me at chantforhappiness@gmail.com

I'd love to hear from those of you who have connected to the SGI through my blog!
I am sharing your stories with Daisaku Ikeda, Sensei.

Email me at chantforhappiness@gmail.com 

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