Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Shoulda coulda...

Life is meant to be this difficult. This is my greatest realization. In many ways, I felt unprepared for the realities found in this age--defined by my abilities, qualities, skill sets and responsibilities. In many ways, I was not ready to grow up. But with the drastic changes needed in troubled times comes the added feelings of survival. The politico-socio-financial oligarchy are the rare persons who may feel secure of their status. And yet, number crunchers and statisticians will agree that the only thing with 100% assurance of occurring is our passing. That is the bitter and unavoidable destiny of life.

So, why live? If life is finite, then why do we bother setting out to accomplish much? In effect, as President Ikeda asks of us who live in the 21st century, what is the purpose of life? In Buddhism, we find that our life is just as the ocean ebbs and flows, a rhythm of the cosmos. It is this same rhythm that we tap into that allows us the ability to accomplish what we set out to do. The rhythm of the four seasons, of life and death, of war and peace and of cause and effect, these aspects of the Mystic Law allow us to better understand the inner functions of the universe. But we still have not explicitly answered the question, what is the purpose of death. President Ikeda states time and again that the purpose of life is to BE happy. I like to clarify here that the purpose is to be happy, not to become happy sometime in the future. Even in the dusk of life's winter, we can be happy. And even in death, we hold a mission of cosmic enormity.

With Masako's passing, I realized that we carry a unique mission that pervades far beyond any one lifetime. Masako continues to encourage me, even though she may not be physically present.

The purpose of life is to be happy. The purpose of death is equal; in life and death, we must be equally happy.

It is in the difficult times that we must find our obligations. In the film "Finding Forrester", at the narrative pinnacle, Sean Connery's William Forrester reads some awe-inspiring, but unfinished words, illustrating that, "Losing family obliges us to find our family; not always the family that is our blood but the family that can become our blood. Should we have the wisdom to open our door to this new family, we will find that the wishes we had for the father, who once guided us, for the brother who once inspired us..." and for the sister, who once cheered for us, actually continue to do so well beyond their life. I have found those whom I now consider my blood. But I want to include more into this family. Once more, I want to possess the wisdom to open the door to a new family.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Strange life

I've been listening to this song a lot lately, from a Fort Collins local band. It's been an interesting listen.

It started when I heard them on the local radio station, doing an acoustic version. The lead singer explained that the antecedent story to the song was this quote, stated by someone familiar to the band: "Some people indefinitely wait to live life." At times, I've felt that I've been one of those people, indefinitely and conditionally waiting to life life. Now is the time to wake up and stop waiting for something good to happen. I've been resting on my fortune my entire life. once more, I've got to stop waiting.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Musing the muse

This past weekend, my grandmother, after two and a half weeks bedridden and confined to her hospital and physical rehab rooms was able to walk. Albeit with the aid of a walker, her mobility returned in quiet fashion. I hope that I can show compassion towards her. There is an old saying from Japanese samurai: when you win the battle, tighten your chin strap.

I do not like where I am now with my grandma's situation. Specifically, I don't like the fact that I have to skulk the line between supporting her and cheering her on, and being strict with her when she becomes demanding. Yes, she must learn to be independent more than ever. Yes, she must defeat the devil of illness on her own. Even when she is in pain, I encourage her to do everything on her own. Otherwise, when she returns home, all she will do is lie around and give in. But, it's also easy for me to respond to her with my own F.D. Slinking and skulking around this minefield becomes tiresome. Then, it is up to me to reinvigorate myself, and find the joy of supporting my grandma, to cheer her on as she takes every step.

The most difficult thing is now that I have a lot more responsibility, I can't spend too much time with my grandma. If I let my responsibilities slip, at work or in the gakkai, I am done. I don't want to give up anything, but if I constantly tire myself out, this will become a dangerous situation for me, risking job, life and activities. There have been times recently where I feel like I am at the precipice of a mental, emotional breakdown. I can feel my body reacting to the sleep time lost, the continual efforts of using my hands and the apathy that brews and quells thousands of times in a day.

Tonight, for the first time in a long time, I sat outside, in the winter air, staring at the gibbous moon, conversing with nature. Finding myself awakened by the presence of the stars, I refreshed my determination. I want to grow in every direction of my life. I feel like a bean; I've expanded my life into many directions but fail to take side steps of growth. Beans are just seeds for further growth. Just as the sun shines on the cold and rigid walls of towers scratching the skies, does it not also shine on the unseen seeds deep within the fertile soil, and into the darkest crevasses of the human heart. The sun rises and sets in the valleys as well as the peaks.

Friday, October 29, 2010

life limited

For me, life is limited when I grow frustrated. When I hear the deathly silence of the whistling plains, I grow frustrated. And to my own error, sometimes my friendships feel as if I am standing on the plains, with a breeze that whistles, unchanging, yet unbowing to my presence. This friction is expected I guess, as an immovable object meets an unstoppable force. Inactivity only causes friction is what I am trying to express.

With that in mind, let me share with you my last couple of weeks. On the day of my return from FNCC from the Sokahan conference, I was met with a lot of DK6 (Devil King of the 6th Heaven), manifesting in strangers around me. People visibly and expressibly upset by flight cancellations, overbooked flights, overall mass confusion and anger, and a general lack of common sense. From the one lady who go up mid-landing in Houston to pick up an item that launched itself 10 rows ahead in the plane and proceeded to have a verbal confrontation with the flight attendants as the plane's wheels touched down, and taxied to the gate, to the one mother at Houston's gate C20 who verbally berated and lightly injured her eldest son (who was acting up) by twisting his arm as she pulled him closer to her body, DK6 manifested in these people, understanding well that the Byakuren, Sokahan, Gajokai Conference was the first conference where I left feeling uneasy due to the nature of how much human revolution I had to endure just to leave Florida. As I expressed to my fellow Central Territory Byakuren, Sokahan and Gajokai comrades, this is the first conference where I've left feeling uneasy, but with a true sense of mission. There was no FNCC high to ride on when I returned.

My most recent frustration has been with my grandmother's current situation.
Prom April 2004
My grandmother returned to the hospital this past Sunday, with serious bleeding from her GI tract. It was not until Wednesday the doctors figured out the source of her bleeding, a benign polyp in her intestine ruptured a vein by applying significant pressure. It is not her health, or her current physical state that I've grown frustrated with. I am doing my best to support her everyday. It is, for the first time in my life, that I've seen her respond to me with her own FD (Fundamental Darkness) and specifically with DK6 arising in how she treats me. In the past two days, every time that I reach out and talk to her, she responds with "shut up!" or 「だまって!」.  My frustration is born where I want to rid her of her battle with the devil of illness. I want to help her, but I feel so helpless. I know that if I respond to her devil, I will do so out of my DK6 manifesting. I burden myself with challenging to overcome my own DK6 and her DK6. 

Honestly, I have never felt this tested in my own faith. Just saying this frustrates me, because I believe that I should already possess the strength to overcome this. In my own head, I can say, "obaachan has gone through this already with her heart attack (in September 2009). I should be fine because I handled myself fine during that trying time." Yet, my DK6 and her DK6 are manifesting at a stronger level, that this attitude won't suffice. Ultimately, it is because of this lax attitude that I become perpetually more frustrated. It is also because of this attitude that I've been a bad friend, because I know I haven't done enough to reach out to those who I can truly rely and are willing to support me. There are some that I haven't even reached out yet. And to those who have reached out already, I committedly thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

Regardless, this is the perfect opportunity to do my human revolution.

I also know that I must have greater appreciation. The doctor in 2009 truly thought my grandmother was going to die that night. Instead, she has prolonged her life for more than 1 year and 1 month. What an amazing feat! "Life is the most precious of all treasures. Even one extra day of life is worth more than ten million ryo of gold...One day of life is more valuable than all the treasures of the major world system, so first you must muster sincere faith." (WND-1, pp. 955). Regardless if my grandmother can or can't muster the faith, it is up to mine to battle this final devil in her life. And with that, I must head to the hospital. I thank you all again, and I look to update here more frequently.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Stop skimming, turn the page.

If I am truly to be the author of my own life, in my own creativity, then today serves as a new page yet to be written. Today, I was appointed the region YMD leader, and I have much anxiety and anticipation to get into the thick of things. Today, I must carefully advance the words on my page. The oneness of mentor and disciple is to make a vow AND to do everything to protect it. This is my promise. This is my commitment. And from that, I will guide the pen strokes of my page yet to be written.

I look forward to this opportunity. I look forward towards human revolution in a new direction, in all directions. I recognize that I will be dealing with a lot of moving parts, and I must be ready to step in without hesitation.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

MTV did okay on this one.

I really enjoyed hearing about the comic, Elijah. Even he has a sense of mission!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Saturday, September 25, 2010

In my headphones today


kiMi67 | MySpace Video

Random musings - September 25, 2010

Whoa! I wish someone could do this for a birthday or my wedding relatively soon. Please. ;)

Cameras are way too cool now a days.


I want to reply to Sensei. I have to reply.

This is a greater description of a previous post. Let me rewind.

On April 29, 2010, I reached Japan for the first time in two years. The very next day, I went to Shinanomachi. On behalf of my family, the YMD of Rocky Mountain Zone, and the youth members in my area, I went to Shinanomachi to present sensei with gifts. April 30: a day that now will signify the next step in my life.

But, nothing could be more touching then what happened this past Sunday.

In April, I presented Sensei with my journal, recording about a year's worth of thoughts, observations and ultimately my own commitment to advancing kosen-rufu. Specifically, I shared my own reflections on critical events--events since returning to Colorado which I believe indicate a traversing of my life's fulcrum and Rubicon--such as, but not limited to my pay cut, and subsequent layoff 7 months later, my obaachan's heart attack, a (still) difficult break-up, challenging my efforts toward July 2010, and preparing for my trip to Japan. This past Sunday, Sensei responded with a message in regards to my journal. He wrote:

"Thank you very much!  Please accept my warmest regards."

What almost everyone doesn't know is that this past Sunday signifies my obaachan's one year struggle of a heart attack (at the age of 84, now 85). Last year, on Saturday, September 19, my grandma was complaining of intense pain in her shoulder, and right before I departed for a wedding reception, I was massaging that very spot. After a few hours, I learned that that pain developed into labored breathing and subsequently she was admitted into the ER. From there, she went to the ICU, where she should have passed away. Instead she fought through it all.

Now, with Sensei's message on Sunday, to have him respond on the very day that marks one year since my obaachan's heart attack meant so much to me. It does not matter if he did it on purpose or if it was the work of the Mystic Law, it was a result of the causes I've made, my family has made since that time. My obaachan is battling her own demons, but in the end, I will cheer her on to victory.

Along with my journal, on behalf of the youth division of Wycoda Area, I presented Sensei with a youth division flag. He responded to that with a different message for everyone:

"Thank you very much. I have seen your flag. Please convey my warmest regards to everyone."



Sunday night, I sent Sensei with a thank you memo. After his words, I had to. I could not hold in the tears for his genuine care for my family, and me. 

So, now, I am left here, contemplating my next step. Whatever I do, I cannot go with the flow of the times. Rather, I must advance beyond, adding to the flow with a surge of force felt 10,000 miles downstream.

Autumn is upon us - Sept. 21, 2010 ( I was in the passenger seat. Don't worry)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Big Bang Theory - Season 4, Episode 1

So, aside from the comedy the ensues on tonight's season opener of "The Big Bang Theory", the unmentioned, yet uncomfortable setting between Penny and Leonard reminded me of one fact: the common occurrence of the awkward atmosphere past a relationship. To those who can find a way to make a post-relationship work into a friendship with no awkward intentions, thoughts, action, inaction and ultimately a malice-less friendship, I find that a remarkable quality to have. It's difficult to be in that situation. I praise those of you who can succeed at doing such.

Monday, September 20, 2010

A happy birthday

First and foremost, a happy birthday to Mar! Mar, I hope you had an excellent birthday.

Second of all, today marks exactly one year since my grandmother suffered her heart attack. Since then, my obaachan had her own highs and lows. In the duration of the 2010 summer, my family easily read her fears, anxiety and depression on her face and in her expressions and mannerisms. But, inside, I know there is a youthful obaachan--one not bound by the limitations set by her own mind. I want to see it again.

And beyond that, I was supremely humbled by sensei's encouragement. Today, coincidentally on my obaachan's anniversary of her heart attack, sensei sent me two messages for gifts I gave back in April, while I was in Japan. The mystic law works in marvelous ways!

He wrote to me, on presenting my journal to him:

"Thank you very much!  Please accept my warmest regards."

And on presenting an area flag to him, he responded:

"Thank you very much. I have seen your flag. Please convey my warmest regards to everyone."

There could not have been a better time to receive this from sensei! Thank you!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Life as of recent

Good evening to all, my friends.

Life has been understandably difficult for all. Since the culture festival in Chicago in July, I'm becoming slower and slower in my life it seems. Many a time, I feel as if my life is a car, brakes screeching on a solid sheet of ice, while spinning 360 after 360. Then, I get a hold of myself for a lone moment, and entering a spin in the other direction. I have found myself harboring attitudes I haven't had since high school, which are probably not the best for my emotional health. Yet, I know that I must endure, because I have been challenging my life sincerely, for the first time. Work. Study. Soka Group. YMD Area. Though these bullet points may be short, they carry loaded emotions, responsibilities and desires. Satisfaction is what I desire from all of these.

To a difficult life. A toast. Cheers and congratulations!

If you are the jester, I must be the mime.