Guidance for a Harmonious Family

When words of gratitude well forth naturally from your heart, all your relationships will develop in a positive direction. It’s up to you, not the other person. Your own life condition determines everything.

Striving to create a harmonious family starts with our own inner transformation, our human revolution. Those around us are indeed the mirror in which our human revolution is reflected.

When we change, others change, our environment changes, and the world changes. One of the most important and fundamental arenas where this drama of human revolution takes place is our family.

And more…

Please live your lives in a cheerful, positive manner, embracing everyone around you with an open heart and broad-minded humanity.

Rather than being thankful because we are happy, being thankful itself will make us happy. Also, chanting with gratitude puts us in the rhythm with the universe, turning our lives in a positive direction

Showing how you have grown as a human being in the best way to communicate the truth of Buddhism to those around you.

– Daisaku Ikeda in The wisdom for creating happiness and peace, Indigo magazine February 2018

Answers in Metaphysical Realm

I spent all weekend studying numerology books. It was like binge eating, stimulation addiction. I didn’t sleep, cook, just studied numerology.

It threw my system out of whack, as all such binges do. I couldn’t go to my Buddhist meeting on Sunday morning because I was so sleep deprived. I did somehow cook lunch for Monday but worked from home.

Today I was so exhausted that I needed to take a sick day. Clearly didn’t do so well in looking after my delicate self.

Some good things came out of the binge though:

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Weak vs Delicate

On Sunday afternoon, I met with a woman from a pole fitness class for coffee. I’d struck up a conversation with her after the first class and after the second class we exchanged phone numbers and agreed to meet for coffee. I expressed how it was lonely and isolated and I was looking to make friends in the area. She told me that I can message her anytime.

She texted me later to organise to meet on Sunday.

It was my most profound dialogue in a long long time. It was so enriching and interesting to meet someone else trying to live true to their convictions and live life based on strong faith.

We talked about our faith-based practices and daily challenges in how our respective trauma can be so hard to get past. It is almost like, when you’ve undergone trauma, your mind and body doesn’t know that you are drowning and how taking a breath of air would feel and to try to swim towards it. It is only our faith that continues to give us the push and courage to seek it.

My friend Saiyad is coming out of a domestic violence situation. Her mother tries to control her and her husband controlled her so much that he wouldn’t even let her pray. Yet, she had the courage to leave all of that to find herself. She said that her psychologist asked her if she was suicidal and she said, “No way, that it is prohibited in my religion. I am a woman of strong faith. This life belongs to Allah and I have no right to take it away.”

I spoke to her about how a broken relationship, a relationship before which I didn’t know I was lovable, left me broken. It snapped my connection with myself and then my health suffered and I am still learning how to connect with myself and Daimoku is the only way I have found to do that.

She nodded and said, there are words in Quran that say, a woman is delicate.

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Nine Realisations of my Power

Today has been a day of many realisations that for now would have to be in a bulleted list because I want to get to sleep, yet not lose this sweet victorious moment.

  1. What’s happening in my life doesn’t matter as long as I am happy within. What brings that happiness within me is connection with myself and others. What brings that connection in my life is kosen rufu – the whole package – chanting, faith, study, engaging with others and striving to go to meetings/host meetings. Ultimately I could be like the happy 50 year old single ultrasound technician who has a cat and lives in a two bedroom apartment in a suburb alone – it really does not matter what is on the outside. I can strive to create happiness in whichever way, whatever takes me and motivates me to sit in front of the Gohonzon and chant.
  2. My realisations will evolve as I grow and the decisions I take will change. This is ok. It’s the journey of my growth and human revolution.
  3. True friendship is my greatest benefit in faith, including learning to befriend myself. Continue reading “Nine Realisations of my Power”

Recognizing systemic panic

Today I recognized how my body resists things that would help relieve its suffering. Instead it tends to hold onto stress and what keeps creating that stress. This happens especially during PMS. E.g. I would be curiously dehydrated. I’ll try to reach for water but my body instead wants different textures like chocolate (creamy), chips (crisp), polenta (soft) and so on, gulping those down on auto pilot, while shutting down my attempts to drink water.

The dehydration and PMS and this kind of eating would lead to bloating, lack of sleep, sore eyes and severe shoulder pain. Then my body starts to store stress it’s not able to detox.

Usually this kind of realisation would send me into panic and a frenzy of trying to find the health professional who would be able to help me because clearly the current one can’t catch it. That would create more stress and make things worse and I’d feel helpless, useless, weak and begrudge my life.

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Fighting toward 16 Mar

My study and determination yesterday led to me chanting 107 minutes since I wrote the last post less than 24 hours ago. This morning as I read through the New Human Revolution Volume 2, I came across this passage:

Shin’ichi thought to himself:

“The battle is now underway. There is only one more month left to this year and I want to make sure to bring it to a successful close The real struggle has now begun – each day is win or lose!” His passionate fighting spirit intensified.

With a month left to March 16, it was just the guidance I needed.

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“Under the Wings”

Today I finally could read Toda Sensei’s guidance on marriage from Under the Wings chapter of The Human Revolution.

It sheds light on where I am yet to strengthen myself and my faith in my love life and relationships. Some of the quotes from volume 7 and my notes below:

“In other words, you must marry a man to whom you will not regret devoting genuine love.” (Pg 895)

I tend to not find such a man and the first sign of trouble makes me regretful. I don’t necessarily have the emotional strength to back up my decision to love someone.

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Tuning in, tuning out of my negativity

As the struggle with food addiction goes, today wasn’t the most successful day in terms of behaviours. However, it was also an incredibly busy and quite a stressful day. If I started to describe what happened with my day, it would seem that I figured what I needed to do and did it quite well. It was a high functioning day from that point of view. However, there were many points during the day when I was checking in with myself and I observed my inner emotional state was quite stressed.

It’s a revelation of sorts. Usually I am so driven by what I am able to accomplish and get done and so focused on it that I don’t even tune in, I presume that if I am able to do things, I must feel good about it. I am sure a part of me really loves being productive, turns out that is just not the emotional part of me. Or rather being hyperproductive seemingly isn’t joyful for me.

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Finding Freedom

Since last year one of my prayers has been to be able to live a life of true freedom. The last few years of my life have been very shackled because of my health condition. It has been like walking a tightrope – making sure I have food to eat according to the diet and I’m managing everything within the limited energy constraints. There’s been the stress management aspect where I get so stressed that I eat the wrong things or binge eat on the right things, either way it’s been really harmful. Also, not being able to accept the reality of my dietary restrictions, the fatigue I could accept eventually primarily because I didn’t even have energy to fight it but also because I just ate to cope with it.

There was a time of my life wherein I ate a big bag of sweet potato chips every single day, sometimes two. I never kept them at home, because I wanted to be stronger. Instead I would walk across the street, even in rainy and freezing whether, sometime before the supermarket closed at 10 pm to get my fix. Every day I would try to get by without them and every day I couldn’t. They were my only trusted reliable companion.

When I look back at that, I’ve come a long way. Even having one day without the chips would be called progress I think.

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