“Pray ? Well , Religion is Wow ! But thats what Grandmas follow ,right ? I’m too young for this . I don’t have enough time to fit in my daily chores , running around with my kids , my work , my household , my socializing 😉 , coffee sessions with my friends, doctor visits with my in laws . meaningful conversations with my husband , phone calls to my dad …the list is endless , where is the time ?! ”
You don’t have all the time , my friend , hence the need !
Recently , my son got promoted to grade 3 . No mean feat for him for he is as proud as his 8th grader sister ( who gets a CGPA 10 ) for getting all “above grade level ” marking on his report card . The teacher handed me his report card and after telling me his academic progress she told me how she had noticed a very positive change in him , he was less boisterous and very kind and polite to his friends . I was amused but delighted to hear about it and shared with her that we were practicing Buddhism at home and each time someone or something troubles him , he doesn’t sulk or brood anymore , instead he chants and prays for the other person’s happiness . It was difficult at first but he’s loving it now that he’s seeing the result in tiny victories when his friends keep a place for him in class , or when they offer him the swing instead of shoving or pushing him away ! But what amused me further was that the teacher looked a bit taken aback and said ,”don’t you think it’s too early” ? “Too early for what “?, I asked her .
Since when is it too early to love and be kind , when is it too early to teach your child to be honest and not lie , when is it too early to teach your child to be responsible for his actions ? Not too early at all I told her !
She smiled .
I’m often told by my friends that “we don’t say anything to our child because they are kids “. My plea is you MUST because they are kids and u need to show them a way !
I choose to teach my kids to be better human beings and understand the philosophy of karma and of cause and effect ! I tell them to choose what is right and wrong for them . They decide . They make the choice . They make mistakes and then they own up because once they’ve accepted the fault as their own it’s easier to change it , we can always change ourselves , the power lies within . I don’t know many people who know they are wrong but don’t want to correct themselves . The problem lies when we don’t own our mistakes and blame others for what goes wrong in our lives .
When I was a kid , I would see my mother pray for almost an hour every morning . Apart from fasting on random Mondays ( so that I get a “good” husband ) . I didn’t do much . I remember fasting all day , cribbing how difficult it was to only eat sweet stuff all day and waiting for the clock to strike 12 midnight ,keeping my cheese sandwiches smothered in mayonnaise ready so that I could pounce on them! I did not know I was doing anything wrong , I had full faith in my faith !
When I got married my mother in law prayed everyday for an even longer time . I remember she took me to her little temple and handed me a religious book and asked me to learn the prayer . I could not , I still don’t know it . I resisted . I just could not understand how reading a few lines from a prayer book made me a better human being . For it was in my actions that I had to show my values and take responsibility for my household .
Am glad I did just that . Accepting and loving my new family was my faith , my religion .
We all have our moments of extreme pain and elation . In all those moments , I had Gratitude , I would thank all my Gods , but I never really got myself to have a daily prayer time .
It was a busy life .I was always running around .
How it started is a long story too personal to share but my faith in Nichiren Daishonin’s Buddhism came with logic . It came with experiencing the Mystic law in everything I did . I took to it well, it was my religion , my faith !
What I’ve learned in this due course is -Don’t force or create fear for religion . -it is not religion but my faith in my practice of it ,that gives me the strength to achieve what I dream to get .
-there is always time for gratitude and faith . I took 5 minutes out of my 24 hours and I could fit in the work of 36 hours in that day ! Try it .
-it doesn’t even have to be a religion . Even if u have faith in yourself it’s good enough . Give yourself that time , meditate, relax do anything ,do something .
-but most of all , suffering is not a virtue , being able to stay happy in trying times is , be a good human being ;don’t suffer 🙂
I have made a checklist of things ,out of which ,I like to do at least one everyday ! It’s a simple list : Help someone , smile at a stranger , yell at my children one time less than usual , not snap at the smallest things that irritate me , hear someone out if they feel like talking , chat up with the domestic staff ….. make a list .
My faith in my Practice has empowered me to take on the challenges my life brings forth everyday and I am victorious more often than not !
So, Keep the faith ,my friend . Pass it on to your kids . You and I need it . The World needs it .