A member from Kansai was discussing goals in a meeting. Everyone there knew that Kansai members have had tremendous victories when they set goals. He mentioned that we should get guidance from our mentor when chanting for a goal. Right away questions came up. “Our mentor doesn’t know about our exact goal. How can we get guidance that’s going to be relevant?”
Here is how one practitioner, Amy, applied the teachings when worried about taking action, concerned about what other people might think about what she was doing, and impatient with the slow pace.
Nervous About Taking Action?
Amy had a mission to help other people become happy. She had been chanting for a big goal, and felt very nervous about taking action. She would have to get out of her comfort zone and do things she’d never done. To support herself, she read President Ikeda’s daily guidance. In For Today and Tomorrow, she found the following:
- Live fearlessly.
- A coward cannot be a Buddha.
- Prayer without action is not the way of Nichiren Daishonin’s Buddhism
When she read this, she knew she had to move forward scared or not. So she challenged herself to do the thing she was afraid of doing. She chanted until she felt fearless and then hurried to take action before she got scared again. In this way she overcame her fears over time.
Concerned About What Might Other People Think?
Another challenge for her was being nervous about what other people might think about what she was doing. She found the following, which addressed this issue.
- The key to achievement is to move forward resolutely along your chosen path. Nothing important can be accomplished if you are always wondering what others are saying or thinking.
- I place a high value on personal initiative.
When she read these she realized that her life was becoming truly her own. She was taking action on her unique mission and no one else could accomplish it in exactly the way she could. She realized that the things she had always felt about, her way of doing things differently, were actually her unique way of contribution.
Impatient For Results?
A third issue for this practitioner was impatience. She wanted rapid results and was getting frustrated. Then she read the following:
- Make steady and persistent efforts and your prayers will be answered, there’s no need to be impatient.
- All the effects in the future arise from causes made in the present.
- The only way to succeed is to bring to completion that which is most immediate.
This encouragement enabled her to relax and take her challenge one step at a time. She told me that this book of encouragement became critical to her moving forward with her mission. She referred to it frequently as she moved forward with her goal.
Applying Buddhist Teachings to Daily Life
These kinds of guidances are about taking control of one’s state of mind and applying the Buddhist teachings to daily life challenges. When you take the mentor’s guidance, integrate
and apply it to whatever challenge you are confronting in everyday life, you can feel your life starting to transform one step at a time. This isn’t always easy. You might find you have to confront fears or learn to expand limited ways of thinking.
Remember. You’re Never Alone
These steps are the path of human revolution and you don’t ever have to be alone. Your mentor, your model of how Buddhist philosophy is lived in everyday life, is there to support you as you take these steps.