Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Thoughts, matter, paper, ink... it has more power then you think.

I asked him, "What is the point of chanting to a piece of paper? What kind of benefit will that bring? To this Sensei Ikeda said, "What is important is what is written on that piece of paper. Take a £50 note for example, you are attracted to it aren't you? That's because you know the £50 note has power. It's the same with Gohonzon [scroll that nichiren buddhists chant to] you may not be able to read it, but it says that it will make everyone happy."

(testimony from Mr. Masaru Hiramoto)
[daily encouragement from Jason Swindle]

An excerpt from one of my favourite books about what information or knowledge is, and how material objects are knowledge locked in physical form. [matter]

As you read the words upon this page, you realize that the information that you are receiving is not an attribute of the letters of the words themselves. The printed line does not contain information. It transmits information. Where is the information that is being transmitted then, if it is not upon the page?

The same question of course applies when you read a newspaper, and when you speak to another person. Your actual words convey information, feelings, or thoughts. Obviously the thoughts or the feelings, and the words, are not the same thing. The letters upon the page are symbols, and you have agreed upon various meanings connected with them. You take it for granted without even thinking of it that the sym-bols - the letters - are not the reality - the information or thoughts - which they attempt to convey.

Now in the same way, I am telling you that objects are also symbols that stand for a reality whose meaning the objects, like the letters, transmit. The true information is not in the objects any more than the thought is in the letters or in words. Words are methods of expression. So are physical objects in a different kind of medium. You are used to the idea that you express yourselves directly through words. You can hear yourself speak them. You can feel the muscles in your throat move, and if you are aware, you can perceive multitudinous reactions within your own body - actions that all accompany your speech.

Physical objects are the result of another kind of expression. You create them as surely as you create words. I do not mean that you create them with your hands alone, or through manufacture. I mean that objects are natural by-products of the evolution of your species, even as words are. Examine for a moment your knowledge of your own speech, however. Though you hear the words and recognize their appropriateness, and though they may more or less approximate an expression of your feeling, they are not your feeling, and there must be a gap between your thought and your expression of it.

The familiarity of speech begins to vanish when you realize that you, yourself, when you begin a sentence do not know precisely how you will end it, or even how you form the words. You do not consciously know how you manipulate a staggering pyramid of symbols, picking from them precisely those you need to express a given thought. For that matter, you do not know how you think.

You do not know how you translate these symbols upon this page into thoughts, and then store them, or make them your own. Since the mechanisms of normal speech are so little known to you on a conscious level, then it is not surprising that you are equally unaware of more complicated tasks that you also perform - such as the constant creation of your physical environment as a method of communication and expression.

It is only from this viewpoint that the true nature of physical matter can be understood. It is only by comprehending the nature of this constant translation of thoughts and desires - not into words now, but into physical objects - that you can realize your true independence from circumstance, time, and environment.

Now, it is easy to see that you translate feelings into words or bodily expressions and gestures, but not quite as easy to realize that you form your physical body as effortlessly and unselfconsciously as you translate feelings into symbols that become words.

You have heard the expression before, I am sure, that the environment expresses a particular individual's personality. I am telling you that this is a literal and not symbolic truth. The letters upon the page have the reality only of ink and paper. The information they convey is invisible. As an object, this book itself is only paper and ink. It is a carrier of information.

Friday, 15 October 2010

We are Eternal Beings.

It seems to me that life's a tiny dream bursting at the seam, infinity waits for all beyond the bs over right and wrong.
I called upon the sun to heal the pain till we are one, emotions run out of control but nothing was bought and nothing was sold.
I kept it all in check, well what the heck we're all tiny specks of life floating out on the sea as far as I and I can see
This life ain't everlasting, still can you take me there?
This life ain't everlasting, only your soul can go around the universe

If the average body lives for 60 years and the human eye can see the light from a galaxy that's taken 2.5 million years to reach you how long does the human spirit live for? Does this knowledge makes us "eternal" beings? My father passed eight years ago today and his spirit travels with me.

Daily encouragement from Jason Swindle (Young Men's Division Leader North East London)

We can have it all...

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Summon the Faith that can move mountains

If you practice faith while doubting its effects, you will get results that are at best unsatisfactory. This is the reflection of your own weak faith on the mirror of the cosmos. On the other hand, when you stand up with strong confidence, you will accrue limitless blessings.

Disaku Ikeda

Flying high

Watching as the delicate glass orb floats on a sea of infinite nothingness. Flying with the eagles in skies of exuberant purple satin, and wondering alone on azure shore-lines with clouds so black they block out the sun. Alive in the spirit of NOW.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Why do bad things happen to good people? Do I choose my karma?

So why do bad things happen to good people? Why are children abused and wars occur? Why did you mum get cancer or did you brother die young?

All these questions do not have a simple answer, but in Buddhist philosophy we have a few possible ideas of why this might happen.

In Buddhism we basically believe that everyone is the same age, since we are eternal beings, the fact that a person is a child and you are an adult is simple a case of perspective.

We are all simply popping in and out of existence at different intervals, and at different times. Just like the atoms in our bodies, the seasons coming and going and the water that moves through-out the earth, via the precipitation cycle.

Now; the idea that a baby can come in to the world and have bad things happen to them is something that is not easy to grasp or to try to understand.

In my opinion;  no one consciously chooses their suffering, but I know from our beliefs as Buddhists, we choose our suffering on a different level, (not the level of the conscious mind/brain) as it sets us on a path. But we are not isolated beings as we are all connected, and every thing that we do and experience effects our families, our communities and ultimately the entire world.

Take that young lad dying in the US from bullying about being gay, it has sparked a HUGE debate and people are sitting up and talking about the issues facing gay people.

I see life very much like a play or a drama, we are all actors on the stage of life, and we step on and off that stage with many different masks.

The stories that we tell and the experiences we live are written in the script of that play, and we are the ones who are writing it, as we go and move forward.

Bad things happen to good people, not because they ask for it, or deserve it, but because they are simply on a path that led them through suffering.

It is like walking a path through a forest, we have to struggle through the thorns to get out the other side, but through that suffering we are stronger, wiser and more connected to the source of all creation. (God, Allah, The Universe etc.)

Deep suffering has caused many human beings to break free from their old ways of being and become great and powerful minds and creators.

Is the FUTURE certain? No, it is not. What is certain is the PRESENT. POWER in the PRESENT and CHANGE in the FUTURE.

What will the future be like? No one knows the answer to that question. All we know is that the effects that will appear in the future are all contained in the causes that are made in the present. The important thing, therefore, is that we stand up and take action to achieve great objectives without allowing ourselves to be distracted or discouraged by immediate difficulties.
Daisaku Ikeda


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