Hi Anna and all Soka friends in Malaysia! This is Viki in Hong Kong - thankyou so much for visiting us and inspiring us, the children loved your visit and so did we! it was so lovely to share experiences, let's continue, and hopefully I will be able to visit your kindergarten in the coming year. Here's the most wonderful article on Courage, from the Amsterdam Zenshu site. Happy Christmas!love Viki In the Gosho “Letter to the Brothers”, NichirenDaishonin says: ‘The cart which overturns on the roadahead is a warning to the one behind. In a time likethis no one can help but thirst for the true way. You may hate this world but you cannot escape…. You must endure this trial and see for yourselves the blessings of the Lotus Sutra. Nichiren Daishonin will also loudly call upon the Buddhist gods. Now more than ever, you must neither show nor feel any fear. (Major Writings, Vol.1, p.139). When Dr. Kawada (Director of the Institute of OrientalPhilosophy) was asked how we can recognize the qualities of Buddhahood beginning to work in our lives, he answered with one word: ‘Courage!’.We can change the fear, insecurity and lack of confidence by starting to like ourselves and therefore beginning to have more confidence. Once you’re happy within yourself, other people respond positively. If you are in harmony with yourself, others will be too. Only, it’s confusing when you don’t know how to get in harmony. There are different ways to live and different lifestyles. Your lifestyle is not what determines your happiness. What matters is to draw out your Buddha nature. Fundamentally, Buddhahood is about having the confidence to be our true selves wherever we are and whatever is happening. This means really appreciating life itself. When we appreciate our own lives and the lives of others, we are able to perceive things andact in a different way – a creative and positive way. Stress is often the cause of diseases. And stress itself is usually the effect of lack of confidence,like, that things will work out (which causes insecurity to come out); or always trying to control things with your mind (which causes anger to comeout); and thirdly, the fear for commitment. When we start the process by facing the lack of commitment to ourselves and others, fear and anger will come out as physical symptoms of our spiritual ‘poison’. If we don’t take care and speak out for ourselves, how can we take care of others? The opposite of fear is courage. When you have the courage to face yourself, you can overcome the fear. Fear is there because we don’t want to see or acknowledge something. Karma in itself is not good or bad, but what we create from it is important. If we try to cover it up and pretend to be something we are not, then we suffer deeply. It is one’s reaction to one’s karma that matters. If you don’t fear something you can’t discover your courage. Courage is one of the qualities of Buddhahood viki 12.16.05 - 11:40 pm #


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