Then this morning my rent check and paying off the AT&T debt (I had negative balances IN ADDITION to bill debts) took out a nice chunk of change, around $900. I misread something last night and thought that I had $300 more than I actually had in the account... So this morning I bought a ticket to go to the super-important, i-gave-my-rent-money-to-pay-for-this Youth Conference at the FNCC (Nichiren Buddhist Conference Center in Florida)- this cost $191. I was excited to have some money left over and some bills paid off and finally a ticket! Woo!
Then I go onto online banking and I see -$80.
Now, here the fun part. Yes, I was surprised. And confused for a couple of minutes. BUT I DIDN'T FREAK OUT AND GET ANGRY AND WANT TO CRY AND BE SHIVERING IN FEAR LIKE I USED WANT TO DO BEFORE WHENEVER MY FUNDS WERE LOW. I JUST KINDA CHUCKLED TO MYSELF, TIGHTENED MY SPIRITUAL BELT AND SAID TO MYSELF, "I GUESS I BETTER START CHANTIN'"
This is so amazing. My happiness does not depend on my bank account. I'm starting to really see that idea/principle manifest in my actual response to things. It's not just a fluffy idea that doesn't translate into real life. My happiness from last night to today has not done a 180 degree shift, not even a 90 degree shift. It wavered for a couple minutes, and then settled right back to where it was. Of course I'm still in the process of this transformation. But I feel so so so encouraged! Like, I'm NOT screwed. I have a sure way of making this seemingly bad situation turn into an opportunity to see where my happiness truly lies, to challenge myself to keep on growing, to not slacken in my chanting, to just keep on expanding. Nichiren wrote something to the effect of, "If when you're making a journey tthe capitol Kamakura, which takes 12 days, and stop on the 11th, how can you admire the full moon over the capitol?"
Yes, I've had some awesome experiences with money growth because of my Buddhist practice. The unexpected check of $370 I got last Sunday for example! But my journey isn't over.
I want to change my financial karma. My family has always been on the brink of poverty, barely balancing on it. Both my mother and my father. I have grown up with the mentality that I cannot afford things. I definitely have had a ceiling as to how much money I can possible have at any point in time. Thinking that I could have $10 000 to my name is so bizarre. I always hear my parents talk about things we can't afford. So we all share this financial karma (which is patterns of thoughts, words, and actions. in our case, they are thoughts, words, and actions of feeling poor).
Well, it stops with me.
President Ikeda, in his book "Faith into Action", says that some people are born into poverty to have the opportunity to prove the power of the Mystic Law [Nam Myoho Renge Kyo] by becoming secure and comfortable financially in this life, changing the course of your own destiny.
I feel like he's talking right to me in that passage.
And that's my journey. Not just paying my rent and bills and having a roller coaster pattern in my checking account. I will remember where my true happiness lies-in nothing but my true self- and I will change my money karma to be a living example of how powerful Nichiren Buddhism really is! Woo hoo!
And as a last note, the motivation for this is not some power trip. Like, woo woo, look at me, i have the key to the universe!
It's the fact that lately I've been filled with hope and excitement for my life and the life of others and I see many people suffering and feeling really lost and cynical, and I so so so want to people to become happy, I want people to find a way to find real happiness and fulfilment that cannot be taken away by anything, I want people to think that they have a viable option that they might never have heard of before-this Buddhism, this chanting of one simple phrase- NAM MYOHO RENGE KYO- with all your heart... I want to inspire hope in others through my own stories of victory.
Compassion, that the fire behind all this. Wanting others to be happy, too. (This is a victory in itself-i chanted to feel compassion for others because I used to feel really detached from everyone)
This is why I spent 2/3 of my rent on a Buddhist conference a couple days before my rent was due. I know this conference is going to deepen my understanding and my connection and my everything regarding my life/my Buddhist practice/my sense of determination and mission. I know that attending this conference is going to help me become more myself, become more happy quicker, which in turn helps me to encourage other people to become happy better. Everything is very connected and I'm excited.
I'm starting to glimpse the truth that when you live for the happiness of yourself AND others, when you put your true self/Mystic Law in the center, the physical and spiritual landscape of your life shifts for the better in ways you never thought were possible.
And all this in a matter of 10 months of chanting Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo.
I'm so so so happy and grateful....
This is the best thing to have ever happened to me.
I can't wait to update on how my current money situation has changed for the better! On man. :D