Misfortune (Please Advise)

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RengeReciter
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Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by RengeReciter » Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:43 pm

I am at my wit's end.

I know that as Nichiren Buddhists our primary concern is not necessarily the achievement of mundane successes. Instead, we are to be focused upon the ultimate attainment of Buddhahood. That said, the practice of chanting the daimoku and revering the Lotus Sutra is touted as a universal panacea for the ills of those of us who inherit the dharma in the Latter Day with no Thus Come One in the world about. It was my understanding that, in light of ichinen sanzen, the problems of material existence have their counterparts in problems of the mind. Chanting would therefore result in a natural improvement in one's circumstances as mental karmas are likewise subdued.

Many of Nichiren's writings highlight practitioners (I think immediately of Shijo Kingo) who were able to attain better conditions overall by holding faithfully to the sutra.

It seems as though I have been exclusively generating demerit in my practice which results in unpleasant circumstances manifesting for me. This isn't entirely unanticipated mind you. Nichiren says in one gosho that the daimoku has the effect of drawing negative karma to the surface to be dealt with in lesser forms so as to avoid harsher expiation in future births. The problem is that I am not really seeing benefit in tandem with the arising of those obstacles.

When I chant consistently, my life takes a noticeable downturn. I work in sales, and I notice that the daimoku has the uncanny effect of drawing the worst possible clients to my doorstep. Down to a man, these potential sales will be deficient in some way (poor attitudes, uncooperative, inability to afford service, etc.). I've also noticed my health being adversely affected and strained relationships.

It is worth noting that when I don't chant, when I essentially separate myself from the practice, these issues disappear. Conditions improve almost instantaneously.

I would like to remain a Nichiren Buddhist, but I cannot continue to receive so many debilitating effects of my practice without some sense of comeuppance or light at the end of the tunnel. Is my misfortune the result of unintended slander of some sort? Is this a test of my resolve, perhaps?

Please advise. Thank you.

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Queequeg
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Queequeg » Tue Dec 26, 2017 7:14 pm

Is that correlation documented or anecdotal?

I've never believed in chanting working like that and I've always looked skeptically on those who made claims that it does.

Think about what you are asking - that certain types of people come to you as customers depending on whether you practice or not. This presumes that you control the various causes and conditions that determines where and when a person comes to you to purchase some goods - that you somehow control these people.

With such control, there are many things you could do...
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

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Queequeg
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Queequeg » Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:27 pm

Consider for a moment all the vectors of activity swirling around you. Some were set in motion in the far distant past... At the big bang, and before... Many others were initiated much closer in time. How much of that have you directly contributed to? In any event, not more than a few decades of that activity, more if we take into account past lives - but those are unknown so we set it aside. Of the activity in this life, how much has emanated directly out of your practice?

The working of karma is impossible to know except for buddhas.

What you experience now is the effect of past causes. It's not known what causes led to good customers and bad customers. It's unlikely that your Buddhist practice played a part.

Your present practice, however, does play a part in how you react to present experiences. In Hinayana teachings, one would strive to be inert. In various Mahayana approaches, one might perceive the emptiness of dharmas and undertake non-action. One might actively work with the experience to purify it - 'turn poison into medicine's. Alternatively, one might see the three truths and find immediate liberation. How sales figure in those strategies... :shrug: what changes if one sees the world as the precious Buddha field and all activity as Dharma activity?

Perhaps these bad customers are hungry spirits looking to you for relief? Sensing the wellspring of Dharma, they approach and try to feed.

Who knows?
Suffer what there is to suffer, enjoy what there is to enjoy. Regard both suffering and joy as facts of life, and continue chanting Namu-myoho-renge-kyo, no matter what happens. How could this be anything other than the boundless joy of the Law? Strengthen your power of faith more than ever.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

Ricky
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Ricky » Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:53 pm

Sales can be brutal. Maybe you can try looking for a different job?

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by narhwal90 » Tue Dec 26, 2017 9:06 pm

The action of perception is subtle and variable. Apparently straightforward deduction of cause and effect one day can be seen as absurdity the next, or even 5 minutes from now. It could be the chanting makes you more aware of the customer's character- or perhaps more aware of your own tendencies towards judgement. Or something else. A big part of the practice and life-condition for me is learning to apply judgement and deduction where suitable and relinquishing it elsewhere, I find the # of difficult people decreases radically.

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Vasana » Tue Dec 26, 2017 10:30 pm

I don't know a thing about Nichiren Buddhism but in the Tibetan tradition, I have personally found the mind-training (lo-jong) literature indispensable for seeing me through any rough patches. I would imagine there is probably the equivalent of Tong-len found in the Nichiren system even if it's not explicitly labelled as such? Maybe in his letters of advice?

Whether we believe that it's the potecy of practice that makes karmic adversity surface or not, the training in incorporating adversity on to the path can really help you make the absolute best of any bad (or good) situation. Perfect opportunities to practice and step our efforts up-a-gear when our circumstances demand nothing less.

Then there are the three patiences to help us build a more realistic recognition that samsara is quite unpleasant and our experience will always result in some level of suffering for as long as we are governed by the 3 afflictions and lack prajna. Even if adversity doesn't seem to be retreating any time soon, the 3 patiences can help us build resilience,equanimity and exertion with a longer-term perspective on the path.

The Patience of not retaliating ( to the attacks of others)
The Patience of voluntarily enduring suffering (of samsara)
The Patience of practicing the Dharma ( patience to bear the profound truth of shunyata)

more on them here,

http://thubtenchodron.org/1993/12/endur ... ng-dharma/
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Minobu » Wed Dec 27, 2017 1:48 am

Ricky wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:53 pm
Sales can be brutal. Maybe you can try looking for a different job?
yeah i hear ya BUT!!!

it also is incredible proving ground for this practice in one's daily life.

been there done that got the tshirt..

i was a top sales kid in a huge furniture chain in Canada ..supporting my parents since 18 , father dying of cancer and five weeks into the practice for no reason get fired by the new manager...his only reason....he does not see sales in my future...

anyway...five weeks later in montreal i hear a tale of extending life of a cancer patient...go home...and as most know here ...long story...father is cured...

go back to furniture store just to see old friends and the guy rehires me .....guy turns on me again and plays incredible mind games with me...i get to tell him to go frak himself...shove this up your ass...you are a very mean individual....

my life did change for the better eventually...

i have a small business and it is up and down like a toilet seat... i get it...i wished i would have stayed in school...but sometimes...almost weekly i see weirdness happen in my job that is due to my practice...

no advice to give...but stick to the practice....let it happen....shy away from thinking about it a little in your chanting sessions...

try to see that it will gel and work out...have faith that everything works out...leave it at that basic level...

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by illarraza » Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:25 am

RengeReciter wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:43 pm
I am at my wit's end.

I know that as Nichiren Buddhists our primary concern is not necessarily the achievement of mundane successes. Instead, we are to be focused upon the ultimate attainment of Buddhahood. That said, the practice of chanting the daimoku and revering the Lotus Sutra is touted as a universal panacea for the ills of those of us who inherit the dharma in the Latter Day with no Thus Come One in the world about. It was my understanding that, in light of ichinen sanzen, the problems of material existence have their counterparts in problems of the mind. Chanting would therefore result in a natural improvement in one's circumstances as mental karmas are likewise subdued.

Many of Nichiren's writings highlight practitioners (I think immediately of Shijo Kingo) who were able to attain better conditions overall by holding faithfully to the sutra.

It seems as though I have been exclusively generating demerit in my practice which results in unpleasant circumstances manifesting for me. This isn't entirely unanticipated mind you. Nichiren says in one gosho that the daimoku has the effect of drawing negative karma to the surface to be dealt with in lesser forms so as to avoid harsher expiation in future births. The problem is that I am not really seeing benefit in tandem with the arising of those obstacles.

When I chant consistently, my life takes a noticeable downturn. I work in sales, and I notice that the daimoku has the uncanny effect of drawing the worst possible clients to my doorstep. Down to a man, these potential sales will be deficient in some way (poor attitudes, uncooperative, inability to afford service, etc.). I've also noticed my health being adversely affected and strained relationships.

It is worth noting that when I don't chant, when I essentially separate myself from the practice, these issues disappear. Conditions improve almost instantaneously.

I would like to remain a Nichiren Buddhist, but I cannot continue to receive so many debilitating effects of my practice without some sense of comeuppance or light at the end of the tunnel. Is my misfortune the result of unintended slander of some sort? Is this a test of my resolve, perhaps?

Please advise. Thank you.
They, most SGI and Nichiren Shoshu teacher/priests, have taught you wrongly all these years. If you practice as Nichiren, you will experience similar travails as he. One can not obtain Buddhhood without overcoming the absolute most severe tribulations imaginable. Remember the teaching in the Letter to the Brothers:

"It is the same with Nichiren’s disciples and lay supporters. The Lotus Sutra reads, “Since hatred and jealousy toward this sutra abound even when the Thus Come One is in the world, how much more will this be so after his passing?” It also reads, “It will face much hostility in the world and be difficult to believe.”17 The Nirvana Sutra states, “By suffering an untimely death, rebuke, curses or humiliation, beatings with a whip or rod, imprisonment, starvation, adversity, or other minor hardships in this lifetime, one can avoid falling into hell.” The Parinirvāna Sutra says: “They may be poorly clad and poorly fed, seek wealth in vain, be born to an impoverished and lowly family or one with erroneous views, or be persecuted by their sovereign. They may be subjected to various other sufferings and retributions. It is due to the blessings obtained by protecting the Law that they can diminish in this lifetime their suffering and retribution.”

These passages mean that we, who now believe in the correct teaching, in the past once committed the offense of persecuting its practitioners, and therefore are destined to fall into a terrible hell in the future. The blessings gained by practicing the correct teaching, however, are so great that by meeting minor sufferings in this life we can change the karma that destines us to suffer terribly in the future. As the sutra says, one’s past slander may cause one to suffer various retributions, such as being born into a poor family or a family with erroneous views or being persecuted by one’s sovereign. A “family with erroneous views” means one that slanders the correct teaching, and “persecution by one’s sovereign” means to live under the reign of an evil ruler. These are the two sufferings confronting you now. In order to expiate the sin of your past slanders, you are opposed by your parents, who hold mistaken views, and must live in the age of a ruler who persecutes the votary of the Lotus Sutra. The sutra makes this absolutely clear. Never doubt that you slandered the correct teaching in the past. If you have doubt about this, you will be unable to withstand the minor sufferings of this life. Then you may give in to your father’s opposition and desert the Lotus Sutra against your will. Remember that, if this happens, not only will you fall into hell, but also your precious parents will fall into the great Avīchi hell, causing all of you indescribable grief. The essential thing is a great resolve to attain the way."

Mark

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Lindama » Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:58 am

RengeReciter wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:43 pm
It seems as though I have been exclusively generating demerit in my practice which results in unpleasant circumstances manifesting for me. This isn't entirely unanticipated mind you. Nichiren says in one gosho that the daimoku has the effect of drawing negative karma to the surface to be dealt with in lesser forms so as to avoid harsher expiation in future births. The problem is that I am not really seeing benefit in tandem with the arising of those obstacles.

When I chant consistently, my life takes a noticeable downturn. I work in sales, and I notice that the daimoku has the uncanny effect of drawing the worst possible clients to my doorstep. Down to a man, these potential sales will be deficient in some way (poor attitudes, uncooperative, inability to afford service, etc.). I've also noticed my health being adversely affected and strained relationships.
As Minobu knows, I know nothing about Nichiren Buddhism.

But, it occurs to me that drawing the worst possible clients to your doorstep doesn't have to be seen as a downturn or as a failure. Sounds like these folks are attracted to the light... ie, when you chant. Why? what would the Buddha do? Mentor them, coach them, bring them into the light.... ofc, you can't go spouting off about Buddhism, but you can bring your presence. This is an opportunity....

I worked for a security guard company for 12 years.... just when I was deep into practice. I was horrified to work with ex-cops, military, FBI. I was ready to quit after 2 weeks. I was too poor to consider it.... as time went on, they suspected that I was different, tho I said little. Someone called me sunshine.... more time went on and I saw kindness in them. I think we all grew in the experience. We all want and need the same thing. We came to build loving and productive relationships.... ofc, the word love was never actually spoken in a business setting. Years after the company went down, we occasionally gather for a picnic.

best wishes
linda
Not last night,
not this morning,
melon flowers bloomed.
~ Bassho

illarraza
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by illarraza » Wed Dec 27, 2017 4:03 am

Came upon these passages tonight...

"But the sutra says, “How much more will this be so after his passing?” By this we know that, in a future age after the passing of the Buddha, there are bound to be persecutions and difficulties even greater and more fearful than those that occurred during his lifetime. If even the Buddha had difficulty bearing up under such persecutions, how can ordinary people be expected to bear them, particularly when these troubles are destined to be even greater than those that occurred during the Buddha’s lifetime?

Though one might wonder what great persecutions could possibly be more terrible than the huge rock thirty feet long and sixteen feet wide that Devadatta rolled down on the Buddha or the drunken elephant that King Ajātashatru sent charging after him, if persecutions greater than those that arose during the Buddha’s lifetime keep occurring again and again to someone who is not guilty of the slightest fault, then one should realize that that person is a true votary of the Lotus Sutra in the age after the Buddha’s passing."

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Punya » Wed Dec 27, 2017 6:59 pm

In Vajrayana, an attitude is cultivated where all experiences are the blessings of the guru. For example, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche said:
When continual difficulties suffering, illness and slander befall you, be grateful that through the blessings of the Guru you are able to experience the sufferings now when you have a means to purify them. You should think,  "This is simply the consequence of my having harmed others and my past lives and of having committed all sorts of negative actions. If I do not purify these actions now, my fate can only be rebirth in the lower realms in many future lives. Through the kindness of my teacher I am now able to purify my karma. I pray that by experiencing this suffering I may exhaust all similar sufferings that afflict other beings."
While it may have more mundane effects, it seems to me that this is an attitude that could be cultivated by all buddhists, they just need to substitute Buddha for Guru or, in your case, the daimoku.

Also in relation to your customers, you might consider their situations. My team leader once said of our team that she could tell me a difficult circumstance each person in the room was dealing with. I think that is true of everybody, so cultivating compassion can be very helpful. As Mingyur Rinpoche puts it:
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Minobu
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Minobu » Wed Dec 27, 2017 7:05 pm

Lindama wrote:
Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:58 am
RengeReciter wrote:
Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:43 pm
It seems as though I have been exclusively generating demerit in my practice which results in unpleasant circumstances manifesting for me. This isn't entirely unanticipated mind you. Nichiren says in one gosho that the daimoku has the effect of drawing negative karma to the surface to be dealt with in lesser forms so as to avoid harsher expiation in future births. The problem is that I am not really seeing benefit in tandem with the arising of those obstacles.

When I chant consistently, my life takes a noticeable downturn. I work in sales, and I notice that the daimoku has the uncanny effect of drawing the worst possible clients to my doorstep. Down to a man, these potential sales will be deficient in some way (poor attitudes, uncooperative, inability to afford service, etc.). I've also noticed my health being adversely affected and strained relationships.
As Minobu knows, I know nothing about Nichiren Buddhism.

But, it occurs to me that drawing the worst possible clients to your doorstep doesn't have to be seen as a downturn or as a failure. Sounds like these folks are attracted to the light... ie, when you chant. Why? what would the Buddha do? Mentor them, coach them, bring them into the light.... ofc, you can't go spouting off about Buddhism, but you can bring your presence. This is an opportunity....

I worked for a security guard company for 12 years.... just when I was deep into practice. I was horrified to work with ex-cops, military, FBI. I was ready to quit after 2 weeks. I was too poor to consider it.... as time went on, they suspected that I was different, tho I said little. Someone called me sunshine.... more time went on and I saw kindness in them. I think we all grew in the experience. We all want and need the same thing. We came to build loving and productive relationships.... ofc, the word love was never actually spoken in a business setting. Years after the company went down, we occasionally gather for a picnic.

best wishes
linda
Lotus Buddhism does have a different approach, maybe not so different for a Rinpoche once told me they were like the psychiatrists back in the day in Tibet. He said sometimes an Abot would decide to belittle women and sexual activity to thwart two thousand monks sitting around thinking about sex all day.
so there are weirdness in buddhism especially monasteries.

when it comes to Lotus Buddhism as taught by Nichiren Daishonin , you can see from the above writings that He warns of troubles in life....more so if you practice this form of Buddhism it can sort of turn into your life is like on steroids ..

why? ...well we all experience it when we chant...we eradicate Karma...it cannot happen to you unless you have an infinity of time's worth of negative bullshit you have committed in the past...so now you find yourself a million gazzillion infinities of time being a sentient with enough baggage to destroy not just a galaxy but a whole universe...and you want out...out of the whole samsaric trap...

it ain't easy kid !..the piper needs paying....

but this is the Buddha's pure land...we are living in the palm of Buddha Vairocana . there is mystic mercy here...you take up the right practice He sets out for you.. in the right time when you have had enough...and if you follow the program you end up enlightened , attaining Buddhahood and Bob's your uncle eradication of all karma...the big flush...back to pure state...one with the universe as it was before desire crept in...


that aside if you practice earnestly....chant about an hour a day...study...do a gongyo now and then as prescribed , try to teach others and hopefully you set yourself up for the right people at the right time to be open ....and your life does change and improve in ways you never knew would..

you end up with a better life to live....it ain't so bad after all...and you change and are stronger...and finally you realize what you live in, why, and are really grateful to have found the KEY ...

the gakki and shoshu are not some demonic nightmare quagmire...they just need a little tweeking..it's like asking Trump to stop the barrage of weird tweets the world watches...like maybe take a clue or cut a page out of past presidents...well maybe not the best import of a metaphor ..psssst thats a segue into hell....
nevermind!!!


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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Wed Dec 27, 2017 7:25 pm

Not a Nichiren practitioner but as I understand it it's kind of like this:

Practice brings karmic fruits to the surface sometimes, but it's entirely necessary that you work with them, and theoretically they are actually 'better' than what you'd be facing without practicing.

Expecting Dharma to not upset us is the wrong approach, as I understand it.
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Minobu » Wed Dec 27, 2017 7:30 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Wed Dec 27, 2017 7:25 pm
Not a Nichiren practitioner but as I understand it it's kind of like this:

Practice brings karmic fruits to the surface sometimes, but it's entirely necessary that you work with them, and theoretically they are actually 'better' than what you'd be facing without practicing.

Expecting Dharma to not upset us is the wrong approach, as I understand it.
By george i think he got it...
the most lucid few sentences on the subject that hit it perfectly.

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by markatex » Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:02 am

I think illarazza is right. This passage from the Kaimoku Sho (which, coincidentally, I just recited as part of daily chanting the other day) is also pertinent:
Although I and my disciples may encounter various hardships and persecutions, if one does not harbor doubts within on one's heart, one will naturally attain Buddhahood over time. Do not have doubts simply because heaven does not grant you protection. This is what I have taught my disciples day and night, and yet they begin to have doubts and then abandon their faith. What we can learn from foolish men is that at a crucial moment, they will forget the promises they have made.
I have been getting much more consistent with my practice over this past year. This has also been one of the most stressful, nerve-wracking years of my life. So, you're not the only one who experiences this. Keep chanting. :)

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by RengeReciter » Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:07 am

There is a fresh post in this section of the forum that speaks to debts of gratitude. Nichiren explained that we must remain cognizant of four debts that we have incurred through the conditions of our births: the debts owed to all living beings, to our parents, to our sovereign, and to the Triple Gem. Of that which we owe to the Triple Gem, I find that I am able to appreciate the debt to the sangha all the more profoundly as a result of the collective efforts of each of you who responded to my initial post.

I created this thread with a heavy heart and a troubled mind. My life wasn't flowing according to my wishes (shocking, considering that it always did before :tongue: ), and I hit a patch of despair as a result. The very last thing that I expected to come out of that experience is wisdom, but in hindsight a genuine pursuit of dharma can result in nothing less. Still, it is frightfully easy to lose sight of the teachings in moments of weakness, and that is where the company of good friends becomes indispensable. I was able to pick myself up, resume my practice with newfound vigor, and transmute my suffering thanks to your encouragement.

You have my gratitude. Namu Myoho Renge Kyo!

That said, here is what I learned:

It is necessary to practice as a disciple of Nichiren. The Lotus Sutra is arguably the most popular text in East Asian Buddhism. Untold numbers of scholars and spiritual seekers have pored through its chapters in search of meaning, and many of those figures have come up with diverse interpretations of just what the sutra teaches. I identify as a Nichiren Buddhist. Thus, my first frame of reference beyond my own budding wisdom for understanding the Lotus and its impact in my life must be Nichiren. Any phenomena that arise as a result of embracing the practice that he codified should thus be examined against the experiences of his lifetime. Otherwise, why trust in the Three Great Secret Laws at all?

I have not always operated with this understanding. In point of fact, prior to the experience that I now relate to you, I cannot say that I have ever done so.

Not everyone comes to an appreciation of the spiritual through the same motivation. Some men approach because they grow weary of the tribulations of samsara. Others come in search of a greater sense of satisfaction with the world around them. Still others come out of plain curiosity. Perhaps like Milarepa before me, I delved into spiritual matters for the prospect of power. Every religion has its wonderworkers--men and women who are capable of extraordinary feats of supramundane power. It was this power that I sought in order to shape my life according to my design. I cared little for the worldview or tenets of any faith; I was only interested in the mechanics behind the abilities I coveted for health, wealth, and other creature comforts. The folk magic of the Protestants, the talismans of the Jews, the incantations of the pagans--I tried to get my hands on whatever I could to attain some measure of the power I had extensively read about!

I carried the same attitude into my study of Buddhism but with one distinction: many of the dharma teachings made sense to me. Yes, I was outwardly only interested in what Buddhism could do for me in reference to my mission, but what I read about slowly began to seep into my mind until I found myself identifying more and more with the path. Discovering Nichiren Buddhism was a further step along that path. It was the first dharma door that I stuck with (however imperfectly considering my brief stints away as a result of alienation from the SGI), but my experience a few days ago demonstrated for me that I had not yet renounced that old mindset in favor of truly becoming a Buddhist rather than using Buddhism.

When I chanted, I wielded the daimoku like a magic wand, like a slot machine even. Chant this much and get this in return. The Lotus Sutra, like so many other of my failed paths, had become a means to an egoic end for me. I would turn to the practice when I needed something to happen in my life. Amazingly, I would usually get the things that I sought, but even that tangible proof of the efficacy of the practice didn't spur me to look deeper. It was the failure that I lamented in this thread that finally came as my moment of truth.

At the lowest point in my professional life this year, I had a watershed moment. How would I face the misfortune that I perceived to have sunken its claws into me? Was the answer to run to yet another quick fix? The temptation was certainly there, but something prompted me to reach out to you guys. Your advice, firmly rooted in dharma, opened my eyes to what was really going on. It dawned on me that I was facing precisely what Nichiren warned I would face if I took the path to Buddhahood in the Latter Day. So many other incidents that had befallen me this year snapped into focus within their proper context as karmic expiation. What's more, my trusting in this practice and chanting no matter the hardship led me to clear benefit.

The relationships that I complained about show signs of turning around, I hit my quotas at work, the tension in my body that I mentioned in another thread dissolved, and my faith is deeper than ever.

If you've made it this far, thank you for reading.

NMHRK!

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Miroku » Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:43 pm

Generosity is the best to avoid misfortune. You want to have plenty and be happy? Be generous and generate compassion.
Child, if you are not hypocritical and out of control, that is conduct.
~ Padampa Sangye

You say such clever things to people, but you do not apply them to yourself.
The faults within you are the ones to be exposed.
~ Padampa Sangye

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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Soma999 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:44 pm

There could be many reasons for problems to come. First of all in these world problems come, up and down come and that’s it.

That being said i would not be surprised if people sabotage themself sometime. It can be quiet obvious : guilt for exemple can generate calamities. But it can also be subtle : some associate spirituality with martyr, suffering. Or purity with absence of desire and complete renonciation, no sex, no money. It could be some things that creates obstacles. Some also « want too much ». It rigidify the energy and creates obstacles also.

One solution is to clarify oneself, one’s belief system, one’s intention. Little by little it allows things to get better.

But for a fast improvement of your situation, i would give you two advises which can work whichever tradition you choose :

First express gratitude, as much as you can, for the good that comes, for the good that came, for the good which will come, and for the good of others. The more you express gratitude, the better things will be. Even giving thanks for hardships may turn a curse into a blessing.

Also, do your practice not as a means only to improve your life, but as an offering. Chant for everyone. Turn your practice into a giving of loving attention. The more your intention becomes « giving » the better it will be.

The more the intention is « me my mine » the more fears you will have and rigidity, and the more hardships. The more you turn the me into us, the more benefits you will get.

All texts speak about vacuity, but what does it imply ? Vacuity of self means all depends on everyhing. That is « me my mine » is the worst obstacle, a complete anomaly, the worst demon. When you turn the me into us, that is turning your intention from taking to giving, you remove yourself from the devastating influence of this demon, which is egocentrism.

Compassion is he great medicine. Without compassion, even the highest teaching lack the essential. Vacuity of self is a meditation which generates compassion. The ohers is also me. That does not mean we should be stupidly open, just letting love increase.

Look your intention. That is the essential. If you have the right intention, anchored into love, then forget about the immediate results. Just give. You have set the direction to he Kingdom.

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Queequeg
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Queequeg » Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:47 pm

Great thread!
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

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Minobu
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Re: Misfortune (Please Advise)

Post by Minobu » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:08 pm

Soma999 wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:44 pm
There could be many reasons for problems to come.
That being said i would not be surprised if people sabotage themself sometime.
Who is this person...where did they come from...
let it be known i know this is me...but i ask myself why...why did i do that and why did i let that slide to the point it causes grief now....
One solution is to clarify oneself, one’s belief system, one’s intention. Little by little it allows things to get better.
This is why i keep pointing out ...the worse thing one can do is lie to themselves...i know this and it is why your above statement i have to admit to in the way i did...
First express gratitude, as much as you can, for the good that comes, for the good that came, for the good which will come, and for the good of others. The more you express gratitude, the better things will be. Even giving thanks for hardships may turn a curse into a blessing.
In Nichiren's teachings we understand , or at least He wishes us to understand, that hardship is part of everyone's life...how much more when you decide to take up the gauntlet of this practice and work with karma ...work out your karma ...use your karma...it's like asking for trouble...but then again the trouble would not be there if we did not have the karma...so we use the karma to produce hardship in order to learn ,wash it,gain strength from it instead of just suffer from it, grow for the next step....when i say produce hardship i mean...the karma is there...you are now living and working with the Buddha and His faculty and fraternity ....so your life is totally different than anyone's on the planet...so we use our karma to produce hardship in order to grow like i explained.

Also, do your practice not as a means only to improve your life, but as an offering.

I take this as doing the program in order to be a wheel in the cog of life that helps out instead of hurts and causes trouble for others...

Chant for everyone. Turn your practice into a giving of loving attention. The more your intention becomes « giving » the better it will be.

The more the intention is « me my mine » the more fears you will have and rigidity, and the more hardships. The more you turn the me into us, the more benefits you will get.
this is the whole thing ...nothing comes from selfish practice....
All texts speak about vacuity, but what does it imply ? Vacuity of self means all depends on everyhing. That is « me my mine » is the worst obstacle, a complete anomaly, the worst demon. When you turn the me into us, that is turning your intention from taking to giving, you remove yourself from the devastating influence of this demon, which is egocentrism.

i don't get the use of vacuity...the emptiness it implies is not the same as the emptiness of sunyata...
Compassion is he great medicine. Without compassion, even the highest teaching lack the essential.

grossly underestimated at times....
Vacuity of self is a meditation which generates compassion. The ohers is also me. That does not mean we should be stupidly open, just letting love increase.
again the use of vacuity eludes me...i once mentioned sunyata leads to a beautiful philosophical way of living...i was told no it is only a view...the view being inter and codependency and co arising and the lack of inherency in all things...Everything Buddhist masters teach points to compassion eventually...when we see that nothing is an island unto itself we should come to the realization that we have to get along with everything in our enviroment, respect everything in our enviroment, see everything in our enviroment as something we to have an effect on, not just others but the actual enviroment itself...as we see by global warming ...so we depend on so much just "TO BE" ...take away just one speck and you are gonzo...

so the philospohy is just that ...seeing how we fit into the picture and are the picture...
Look your intention. That is the essential. If you have the right intention, anchored into love, then forget about the immediate results. Just give. You have set the direction to he Kingdom.
Malcolm once talked about , Karma is all based on one's volition behind the act or thought ...

anyway...a gem of a post....no need for Soma to get you through your day if we live by it :tongue:

you have created a great paradigm in this post...
i only answered in it to learn as i go....


there is a chocolate shop in toronto called soma...i found it a few years after it opened...amazing ...

met the owner and said i loved the name he took from Brave New World ...he freaked and told me i was the first that got it....weird huh...

https://www.google.ca/maps/uv?hl=en&pb= ... vetab=main

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