Thursday, June 25, 2015

Problems are Like Push Ups ~ They Strengthen Our Muscles of Faith!

This picture was a gift to Ben from a reader! Thank You!
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Wow ~ it has been a week! It's only Thursday night, but I feel like I've lived a year this week. My life condition is sky high with all I am going through. It is so true that problems, once embraced and challenged, are the "weights" that build our muscle of faith. 
I feel incredibly strong, and on Tuesday I'm giving an important speech based on Christiane Northrup's book "Goddesses are Ageless." My life is so exciting. 

When we Nichiren Buddhists say "faith" we mean ichinen (desire put into action) and showing actual proof of this practice in our lives. This is Practical Buddhism. We change our lives by chanting the name of the Mystic Law of Cause and Effect through sound vibration - Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. 
"Muscle of Faith" means absolute certainty that our practice will produce the result. It's our ichinen put into action to produce the result. 

How strong is our mind while sitting in front of our Gohonzon? How focused are we? How certain are we that WE are the Buddha commanding our life? 
This week I have been certain. I am praising my life. I am appreciating the challenges and obstacles I'm facing. I'm studying Daisaku Ikeda's words, chanting focused uninterrupted gongyo and daimoku - no phone - no nothing. At night, I come home and get in front of the Gohonzon FIRST. Not last. I can feel the difference in my life. Our practice matters! 

Problems strengthen our muscle of faith! As long as we don't run from them. Earlier this month I wanted to run. I almost picked up and moved to another state, where it is warmer, and I think Ben and I would be happier. I wanted to pave the way for him. But I can't leave without Ben. We have to win here first. (Or find him a facility in a warm state) Then we can move and find the sun and warmth. 

Since I could not leave without Ben, I stayed here to fight...fight my karma...fight my own darkness...fight discouragement...create value where I am right now. 

And I am winning! I have brought almost a month's worth of business into my company this week...I have booked many speeches, and met many key business partners. My work involves helping seniors and their families. It's very fulfilling. 

And on Tuesday I got a call from the hospital. They said we were going to have to start paying the hospital $2000 a day because Ben's insurance was no longer going to pay. 

This has happened before. This winter they threatened to release him to us - instead of finding a place that could help him - and I got physically ill. I was sick for a month. But this time I was stronger. 
I flew into action and did not even feel scared. I took swift action. I called the case manager at the insurance company and his case is being reviewed. I called the CEO of the hospital and said I need extra help here. How can we find a place for Ben and keep him safe in the mean time? So far no residential treatment facility is accepting him because of his past suicide attempts. He clearly needs to go somewhere and I am certain we will find that place. We need to find the best place for him to get better...or the right treatment somehow. Schizophrenia is such an enigma. There MUST be something that can help!

Today I am launching a campaign called 
Books for Ben
He is reading all the time. He likes to write in his books. He needs books that are for ages 12-16 or so. He's incredibly intelligent, but this illness has changed his brain...and he needs simpler stories of inspiration. If you have any books for younger people that you're not using anymore (used is FINE), Ben could use them. He likes stories of people who have gone through difficult times and come through. He likes all kinds of books and magazines. He likes humor. If you would like to contribute, you can use my address: 
Jamie Lee Silver, 
17w702 Butterfield #104, 
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181. USA

If you send anything, please consider including a note of encouragement. He'd love to hear from you! I tell him he has friends all around the world. 
I think it would mean a lot to my sweet boy. His running team from High School is also going to contribute. I am so grateful for all the warm hearts around me! 

You are all the best. 
We are all winning together. 
You inspire me and countless others every day! 


  1. Dear Jamie,
    I am really touched and moved by this very line :

    At night, I come home and get in front of the Gohonzon FIRST. Not last.

    I am encouraged to follow this in my life too.

    Thanks dr.

  2. Jamie, I will really pray for Ben and his health..

    You are really very strong Mum...have literally tears in my eyes...

    Neha (Delhi)

  3. Dear Jamie, you've a fascinating blog. I've become a regular reader of your blog. And Congratulations, Your blog as been featured in my blog as, "Most Up to Date Self-help Blogger of the Week". I'm a self help blog author and my hobby is to read and honor bloggers who write self help topics that include personal, social and leadership skills. Please keep in touch with me in Twitter, @ipersuade. In Twitter, I follow focused self help coaches, who are bloggers like you to share and exchange best practices relating to self help topics and blogging. I kindly request you to follow me so that you will get an opportunity to meet other exclusive coaches like us who blog on the self help topics to broaden our network and knowledge. Looking forward to build a long term blogging relationship with you. -Sridhar Chandrasekaran

  4. Hi Jamie, I have been practicing Budhism since the last ten years. I came across your blog couple of days back. Your blogs are inspiiring and love to read them and apply in my life.

    My this message is to Dear Ben, Night is always darkest before the dawn. You will be in my prayers from this very day. We will fight this illness together. Dont loose heart . Something special is just waiting for you just round the corner.. We have member who has similiar problem. His wife like your mother has prayed for him continuously before the Gohonzon. He is is now able to do good in his business and take care of his family. Keep smiling. I will continue to writie to you. Take care

  5. Thankyou Jamie for your encouraging and motivating blogs. It makes me sit up and start again with fresh determination to attain victory and show the actual proof of the practice in my life. Everytime m surrounded with challenges, which is actually quiet often and feel lost, depressed and ready to give up, reading your blog and studying Sensei's work fills me with hope, courage and determination.

    Today introduced a colleague of mine to your blog, who has been practicing since last few years and is going through a rough patch in her life.

    With best wishes for You and Ben

  6. If you have not yet seen the film 'a beautiful mind' you may please see it. You may also find a website called 'green earth'. It is in New Zealand, an ideal mental rehabilitation center. Kindly go through their entire operational system.