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    ahhh, resinate my freinds, become tuned to your environment and things around you will prosper..... we are all a product of our environment..... HHB

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      We are all good friends!

      Good Friends

      Ananda, one of Shakyamuni Buddha's closest disciples, once asked him: "It seems to me that by having good friends and advancing together with them, one has already halfway attained the Buddha way. Is this way of thinking correct?"

      Shakyamuni replied, "Ananda, this way of thinking is not correct. Having good friends and advancing together with them is not half the Buddhist way but all the Buddhist way."

      This may seem surprising, as Buddhism is often viewed as a solitary discipline in which other people might be seen as more of a hindrance than a help. However, to polish and improve our lives ultimately means to develop the quality of our interpersonal relationships--a far more challenging task than any solitary discipline. Our practice of Buddhism only finds meaning within the context of these relationships.

      From another perspective, given that Buddhist practice of polishing and aiming to improve our lives from within is a constant challenge and a difficult process, it is only natural that we need support from others also dedicated to walking a correct path in life, trying also to create value in their lives.

      SGI President Daisaku Ikeda has written, "Having good friends is like being equipped with a powerful auxiliary engine. When we encounter a steep hill or an obstacle, we can encourage each other and find the strength to keep pressing forward." And as Nichiren (1222--1282) wrote: "Even a feeble person will not stumble if those supporting him are strong, but a person of considerable strength, when alone, may lose his footing on an uneven path..."

      In Nichiren Buddhism, good friends are known as zenchishiki or good influences, while akuchishiki refers to bad influences. People affect each other in subtle and complex ways, and it is important to develop the ability to discern the nature of that influence. According to Buddhism, "bad" friends are those who encourage our weaknesses. In Nichiren's words: "Evil friends are those who, speaking sweetly, deceiving, flattering and making skillful use of words, win the hearts of the ignorant and destroy their goodness of mind."


      Even when intentions are good, the degree of our positive influence on each other will vary. Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, founder of the Soka Gakkai, used the following illustration. Say you have a friend who needs a certain amount of money. Giving your friend the money they need is an act of small good, while helping them find a job is an act of medium good. However, if your friend is really suffering because of a basic tendency toward laziness, then constantly helping him or her out may only perpetuate negative habits. In this case, true friendship is helping that person change the lazy nature that is the deep cause of their suffering.

      A truly good friend is someone with the compassion and courage to tell us even those things we would prefer not to hear, which we must confront if we are to develop and grow in our lives.

      Ultimately, however, whether people are good or evil influences in our lives is up to us. In Buddhist terms, the best kind of zenchishiki is one who leads us to strengthen our own faith and practice in order to thoroughly transform our karma. To quote Nichiren again, "the best way to attain Buddhahood is to encounter a zenchishiki, or good friend." Further, Nichiren comments that Devadatta, the cousin of Shakyamuni who tried to kill him and divide the Buddhist order, was "the foremost good friend to Thus Come One Shakyamuni. In this age as well, it is not one's allies, but one's powerful enemies who assist one's progress."

      This expresses a key concept in Buddhism. Due to the immense transformative powers of Buddhist practice, even "bad" friends can have a good influence if we make our relationships with them into opportunities to examine, reform and strengthen our lives. The ideal is ultimately to develop the kind of all-encompassing compassion expressed by Nichiren when he wrote that his first desire was to lead to enlightenment the sovereign who had persecuted him, repeatedly exiling and even attempting to behead him.

      [ Courtesy January 2004 SGI Quarterly]
      Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

      Comment


        "It is rare to be born a human being. The number of those endowed with human life is as small as the amount of earth one can place on a fingernail. Life as a human being is hard to sustain--as hard as it is for the dew to remain on the grass."

        (The Three Kinds of Treasure - The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, Vol.1, page 851) Selection source: "Kyo no Hosshin", Seikyo Shimbun, July 22nd, 2009
        Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

        Comment


          Ten Factors

          In many teachings of Buddhism, the Buddha was presented as a superhuman being, whose abilities and wisdom were far beyond the reach of ordinary people. However, the Lotus Sutra reveals that there is no separation between the life of a Buddha and that of an ordinary person. A Buddha is a person who has polished or revealed his or her inner state of life to a point where the qualities of wisdom, compassion, life energy and courage are fully developed. As the 13th-century Buddhist teacher, Nichiren wrote, "While deluded, one is called a common mortal, but once awakened, he is called a Buddha."

          The ten factors are introduced in the Lotus Sutra to define the fundamental reality of life. "The true aspect of all phenomena can only be understood and shared between Buddhas. This reality consists of appearance, nature, entity, power, influence, internal cause, relation, latent effect, manifest effect and their consistency from beginning to end."

          These ten factors are common to all living beings, in any of the ten states of life [ten worlds], from hell to buddhahood. As SGI President Daisaku Ikeda has written, "To say that the beings of the ten worlds all possess the ten factors...is nothing less than an affirmation that, as seen with the eye of the Buddha, there is no difference between the life of the Buddha and the lives of others. The enlightenment of all people, therefore, is a certainty."

          The ten factors provide a useful guide to the essential components which make up all life.

          No one could say that he or she has no "appearance." Such a person would be invisible. Equally, no one could claim not to have a personality, to have no energy, or to carry out no activity. So long as we are alive, we manifest the ten factors. We all have a physical identity consisting of our features, posture and so on--our appearance--and a nature--the unseen aspects of our temperament or personality such as a short temper, kindness or reticence. Our entity or fundamental identity is composed of these two aspects.

          Power is life's potential strength or energy to achieve something, and influence is the movement or action produced when this latent power is activated. Internal cause consists of the possibilities inherent in our life and the inner karmic tendencies or orientations we have created by our past thoughts, actions and deeds. Relation is the external cause which helps "stir up" and activate the internal cause. Latent effect is the result produced simultaneously in the depths of our life by this interaction, and manifest effect is the visible external result which eventually appears. Consistency from beginning to end means that all these nine factors are perfectly consistent in expressing our life state at any given moment.

          In the case of someone who develops cancer, the internal cause could be a genetic "potential" to develop the illness. With the action of an external cause, such as an unhealthy, stressful lifestyle or being exposed to radiation, the cancer gene is triggered (latent effect), and as it multiplies (manifest effect), the symptoms of cancer appear. While the person may fall into hell state initially, when they realize they can change and challenge the situation, they may even experience a state of joy, which will manifest itself in a consistent, integrated manner through all the ten factors.

          The ten factors can be used as a framework for analysis of a given situation. By viewing a given state of affairs with the perspective of the ten factors, it can become easier to identify the root of suffering and change the situation so it leads to joy. The ten factors also form part of a broader theoretical framework of "three thousand realms in a single moment of life."

          On a deeper level, Nichiren explains that the ten factors are in fact a manifestation of the underlying creative and compassionate life of the cosmos. He expressed this as the Mystic Law or Myoho-renge-kyo. To view all things as the manifestations of the Mystic Law of life is thus to perceive what the Lotus Sutra refers to as the "true aspect of all phenomena."

          But this truth does not justify a "laissez-faire" attitude to life. It is not correct to say that someone is a Buddha just as they are, even if they make no effort or carry out no practice. Simply saying that reality, full of suffering and problems, is itself the true entity, manifesting the enlightened life of the cosmos, cannot lead to improvement in people's lives or society. Rather, the true aspect should be understood as a potential to be realized. Nichiren taught that it is not enough to be aware on a theoretical level of the true aspect of our lives. Rather, he urged his followers to commit themselves to their Buddhist practice in the midst of the realities that confronted them. It is by transforming ourselves and our surroundings, making them shine with the positive potentials they hold, that we reveal the true aspect of all phenomena--the state of Buddhahood--in our own lives.

          [ Courtesy October 2000 SGI Quarterly]
          Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

          Comment


            "There is no true happiness for human beings other than chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo."

            (Happiness in This World - The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, Vol.1, page 681) Selection source: "Kyo no Hosshin", Seikyo Shimbun, February 6th, 2010
            Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

            Comment


              "'The treasures of the heart are the most valuable of all,' Nichiren Daishonin says. 'Strive to accumulate the treasures of the heart!' (WND-1, 851). This is the message he imparted to his embattled disciple Shijo Kingo. It contains the most vital key for winning in life.

              "Our heart is our unsurpassed treasure in life. It is endowed with incredible potential and supreme nobility. Its depth and breadth can be expanded infinitely, and its strength can be developed without bound. The French author Victor Hugo (1802-85) wrote: 'There is a spectacle greater than the sea, and that is the sky, there is a spectacle greater than the sky, and that is the human soul.'

              "How can we expand the inner realm of our life, develop inner strength, and accumulate the treasures of the heart so that we can lead better lives? The answer is found in practising the Mystic Law."


              SGI Newsletter No. 7929, LEARNING FROM THE WRITINGS OF NICHIREN DAISHONIN: THE TEACHINGS FOR VICTORY, [12] 'The Three Kinds of Treasure'--Part 3 [of 3] The Ultimate Key to Victory in Life Is Accumulating the Treasures of the Heart, from the December 2009 issue of the Daibyakurenge, translated Feb. 5th, 2010
              Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

              Comment


                "Even an ignorant person can obtain blessings by serving someone who expounds the Lotus Sutra. No matter if he is a demon or an animal, if someone proclaims even a single verse or phrase of the Lotus Sutra, you must respect him as you would the Buddha. This is what the sutra means when it says, 'You should rise and greet him from afar, showing him the same respect you would a Buddha.' You should respect one another as Shakyamuni and Many Treasures did at the ceremony in the 'Treasure Tower' chapter." "The Fourteen Slanders", WND-1, Page 757
                Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

                Comment


                  Nam myoho renge kyo!
                  sigpic

                  Pictures of the Pot I Grow

                  Recycling Dirt Is Ridiculously Easy

                  The LEDs That Are Changing the Game
                  You can't stop me. I'm like a weed. I might disappear for a moment or two, but I will pop up somewhere else and will never stop growing.

                  Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!




                  Comment


                    "In the latter part of the writing, 'The Three Kinds of Treasure,' the Daishonin teaches that 'the treasures of the heart are the most important of all' (WND-1, 851). The ultimate treasure in terms of achieving genuine victory in life is our Buddha nature manifesting from within through faith in the Mystic Law. This is a crucial teaching of which we must never lose sight."

                    SGI Newsletter No. 7929, LEARNING FROM THE WRITINGS OF NICHIREN DAISHONIN: THE TEACHINGS FOR VICTORY, [12] 'The Three Kinds of Treasure'--Part 3 [of 3] The Ultimate Key to Victory in Life Is Accumulating the Treasures of the Heart, from the December 2009 issue of the Daibyakurenge, translated Feb. 5th, 2010
                    Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

                    Comment


                      Let us feel happy and positive about wanting to challenge our weaknesses and shortcomings! When we break through the walls of our own limitations our lives as well as the society in which we live in will undergo a dramatic transformation!

                      Daisaku Ikeda
                      Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

                      Comment


                        "Single-mindedly chant Nam-myoho-renge-kyo and urge others to do the same; that will remain as the only memory of your present life in this human world."

                        (Questions and Answers about Embracing the Lotus Sutra - The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, Vol.1, page 64) Selection source: "Kyo no Hosshin", Seikyo Shimbun, August 11th, 2009
                        Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

                        Comment


                          People tend to compare themselves to others. Of course, it is important to try to learn from others' good traits. But it's petty to envy what appears to be their happiness and good fortune. Nothing comes of that. Those who focus on polishing themselves and living with a sense of purpose are the victors in life. Please engrave this point deeply in your heart.

                          (SGI Newsletter No. 7830, SGI President Ikeda's Speech, Young Women's Division Commemorative Gathering, Part 2 of 5. Translated August 4th, 2009)
                          Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by PassTheDoobie View Post

                            ...I'm laughing now! This shit never ends and I will summarily kick some stinking fucking devil ass once again!

                            I am proud to prove the validity of my faith one more time and will do that without fail!

                            For the record: Stinking fucking devil ass kicked once again (Actually more than a week ago, but I forgot to share that with you all! It is a wonderful thing to have a life partner that chants as much as you do! Faith! Victory of gold!)

                            Bowing in humble obeisance,

                            Thomas
                            Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

                            Comment


                              "In 'The Three Kinds of Treasure,' the Daishonin praises his disciple's faith, explaining that Kingo was able to take the first step towards victory based on the principle of 'manifesting the Buddha nature from within and bringing forth protection from without' (cf. WND-1, 848). The moment Kingo stood up with unwavering faith, his inner Buddha nature manifested, this activated the heavenly deities--the benevolent functions of the universe--and resulted in external protection in the form of Lord Ema's renewed reliance on Kingo.

                              "But Kingo still found himself in a rather hostile environment. In this writing, the Daishonin offers a variety of detailed instructions and advice to help Kingo solidify the victories he has achieved thus far. He urges his disciple to remain vigilant against attack, to interact with others in a courteous and sincere manner, and to foster good relations with his brothers and fellow practitioners and make them his allies. The Daishonin also warns Kingo to keep a tight rein on his short temper, sternly pointing out that if he succumbs to an outburst, it could cause a serious rift in his relations with those around him and destroy all the positive progress he has made.

                              "To achieve unshakable victory, we need to challenge ourselves in earnest to change our karma. This is also the practice of human revolution, in which we strive to break through our inner darkness or ignorance. Carelessness is the greatest enemy. If we allow ourselves to grow complacent and lose our fighting spirit, then the shortcomings or negative tendencies that arise from our fundamental darkness will resurface. For that reason, the Daishonin consistently stresses the point that faith is life's ultimate treasure."


                              SGI Newsletter No. 7929, LEARNING FROM THE WRITINGS OF NICHIREN DAISHONIN: THE TEACHINGS FOR VICTORY, [12] 'The Three Kinds of Treasure'--Part 3 [of 3] The Ultimate Key to Victory in Life Is Accumulating the Treasures of the Heart, from the December 2009 issue of the Daibyakurenge, translated Feb. 5th, 2010
                              Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

                              Comment


                                "Moreover, in spite of the fact that even such men of past ages as these puzzled over the doctrine of attaining Buddhahood in one's present form, your having inquired about this doctrine again and again in this way in your situation as a woman is surely no ordinary thing. Has Shakyamuni Buddha, the lord of teachings, taken possession of you?"

                                (The Attainment of Buddhahood in Principle and in Its Actual Aspect - The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, Vol.2, page 892) Selection source: SGI President Ikeda's speech, Seikyo Shimbun, February 7th, 2010
                                Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

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