Within those first two weeks, I had a windfall which allowed me to replace my tires, and I received an offer for a much better job. Timing is everything, isn't it?
Weren't you working to the best of your ability on accomplishing those things anyhow?
I mean, sure, you chanted - too - but you were already doing everything you could think of to attain those goals. People attain those goals likewise by trying, without needing to chant on top of that. When I finally realized that, the whole "chanting is the magical icing on the success cake" concept melted away. If you're already working your ass off to get (fill in the blank), you're pretty likely to get it. That's how life works. Effort in = success out.
Encouraging someone to chant for their happiness is vague enough to work for anything or anybody; each person has their own definition of happiness and their own ideas of what would make them happy. And I believe that
whoever it is that is shaku-bukuing another person is doing it with what they sincerely believe to be the best of intentions.
Agreed. I just can't wrap my mind around another person being so wittingly evil that they would set out to ensnare a vulnerable person with the intent that this person will become a cult zombie and have their life ruined.
although I admit I miss its mind-lulling ability when I'm fighting my normal insomnia
Perhaps you might like to try another Buddhist angle - the "breathing meditation." You lie there in the dark and focus *exclusively* on your breathing. Iiiiiiin. Oooout. Iiiiiiiin. Oooout. Don't put the words to it, just feel the air passing into your lungs and passing out. Focus completely on that. When I was first coming out, my habit was to chant in my mind when I couldn't sleep or was falling asleep. I consciously substituted the breathing meditation, and it enabled me to disentangle my mind from the mental-chanting habit. That's all it was, of course. Now, I sometimes will do it, but I no longer think of it as a "chanting meditation." It just focuses my mind on something that doesn't involve thinking, if that makes any sense.
When I told her that I wasn't chanting at all, she (so sadly) said "you really don't believe that it works, do you?" I just told her "no," with no elaboration. Despite her adherence to this practice, I love and respect her and see no reason to offend her or hurt her with the conclusions I've drawn about sgi. Her husband and daughter are true zombies - even if I could win her over with reason, it would pretty much destroy her family if she stopped practicing.
Yes, I agree - no point in attempting to sway her one way or another. After all, if you want her to respect your right to choose for yourself, you have to extend her that consideration and respect first, right? Fair's fair!
I love that whole "I know you're secretly chanting and you just don't want anyone to know." *eye roll* Sort of the SGI version of "There are no atheists in foxholes." Sure there are. I have known several, active military, served active duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, Fallujah and the whole 9 yards. None of them went crying to any jesus.
Regardless, since her family is *in*, her situation is extremely complicated. I wouldn't touch THAT one with a ten-foot pole! My only remaining contact with SGI, my former best friend, the Japanese ex-pat who basically used me for all she could get out of me while her convicted felon junkie of a criminal husband was in prison, only to have *nothing* to do with me once he got out (he's back in for the rest of his life now), is a "fortune baby" (some "fortune"!), so I couldn't possibly talk to her about my realizations. Let her live her life as she wishes/as she must. I can be kind.
It would surprise me with your sponsor if push didn't come to shove at some point. With intolerant religions, there seems to always be this timeline in effect - you're the project, and unless you deliver results in the time frame that the member has internally specified (without your knowledge), then when that window for putting effort into you closes, when the time you've been allotted to get on board runs out, you may well find that the phone calls stop and YOUR phone calls start to go unanswered. I don't know about your friend - it sounds like you've got significant history together, but things change when you become an "outsider."
On the old board, I mentioned this one time Theresa Hauber - Big Cheese Eric Hauber's wife - came to one of our district meetings, and she gave her "experience" about starting her practice. She was told to make a list of things she wanted to accomplish or see happen in her life. She said she was encouraged to chant for 90 days (which just happens to be about the minimum time required to get a habit entrenched) and, if she didn't get everything on her list, she could quit with a clear conscience - she'd tried it, but it hadn't worked. So she got a legal pad, and filled out one of those long yellow pages front and back. As the days went on, she checked off item after item. Finally, on the 90th day, there was only one item left - for her husband to finish and turn in his dissertation, which he'd been dragging his feet about for about a year, if memory serves. So she called her sponsor and said, "It didn't work. Come pick up the scroll - I don't want it any more." Hung up the phone, and it rang - it was her husband. Guess what he said? "I just finished and turned in my dissertation." So when her sponsor got there, she said, "I've changed my mind - I'll keep it."
So there, from a national level leader, was a very clear "Chant for whatever you want" message. What always gets me is that people only chant about basically trivial stuff. They never chant for the child born without an arm to grow his arm back - my former district leaders had a kid they'd adopted with that condition. When he asked if he could chant for his arm to grow back, they hemmed and hawed and said, "um...no. But your missing arm doesn't have to stop you from doing whatever you want to do." Lame.
What about chanting for CEOs to decide to cut their own pay to 100 times the pay of the lowest paid employee in the corporation? What about chanting for our presidents to stop attacking and invading other countries? What about chanting for the oil companies to put serious money into alternative energy sources, cutting oil usage to less than 10% of their business within 6 months? Certainly THOSE things are "possible", right? Aren't we supposed to be able to "make the impossible possible" by chanting? So why is it that people who chant for stuff chant for the very same stuff that other people all around them are getting through their own efforts, without any chanting at all? That seems utterly self-defeating.
Either you can make the impossible possible, or you can't. So why aren't you chanting for things that other people CAN'T get all by themselves??