Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

Nichiren was a Buddhist monk who lived in Japan during the Kamakura period, roughly around 1200 A.D. he focused exclusively on the original teachings of Gautama Buddha & preached the Lotus Sutra – which is said to contain all of Buddha’s teachings – in an amalgamation towards the end of his life.

This branch of Buddhism is referred to as Nichiren Buddhism.

Recently, at an unexpected & unplanned brunch gathering – I had the occasion to meet with practitioners of Nichiren Buddhism – and it was an eye opener. If anything, it brought me peace, understanding & acceptance in more ways than one.

The focus of discussion was one of the core concepts of Lotus Sutra – also practiced as a meditation technique & mantra – the phrase – Nam Myoho Renge Kyo.

Not having sufficient information that would qualify me as an active participant – I opted for the role of an ardent, silent listener.

The following is what I understood & compiled:-

  1. Towering before you is a golden gate too heavy for even the strongest man to open. To enter you’ll need the key. Don’t bother looking around. The key is a sound. Intoning the phrase Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo will cause the gate to unlock.
  2. Suddenly you find that this imposing gate weighs no more than a feather. With just your finger, you can flick it open. Walk through the `Gateway’, into the second part of the `Inner  Chamber’, and you’ll find yourself standing inside the `Ever Life Sanctuary’.
  3. Therein you may venerate the Supreme Being of Everlasting Life – God Almighty – and give thanks for the blessings you have received, and pray for everlasting joy to rain upon all beings.
  4. Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo is the key into a world of illuminating proportions. It will open a secret vault that is hidden within your life. You can use this treasury to acquire wisdom, trade in your problems for sacks of joy, and enjoy blessings that bring you peace of mind.
  5. Nichiren advised that for mortal beings chanting it serves as an elixir to cure all causes of suffering.
  6. Nam Myoho Renge Kyo – simply means – take me to the cause so I can understand the effect. The cause (truth) is hidden within the lotus – and as the petals open – illusion will separate from real – allowing you to `see’ the cause of your present effect.
  7. Every micro / macro happening in our life has been seeded in a distant past. You have to regress into the past to understand your present.
  8. Nam Myoho Renge Kyo has to be chanted in a certain rhythm, and for predetermined set of minutes in a day. It has to be chanted with eyes open & preferably focusing on a blank wall or space ahead of you & sitting with spine erect. It is also important that you have a question or a problem in mind before you begin.
  9. So what happens when you do this?
  10. Keeping a straight spine will allow energy to flow from root to crown chakra without obstructions. Keeping your eyes open will allow you to have a `vision’ / to `see’ – if you are blessed enough to have heightened energies. The rhythm & words create vibrations that will break the walls of illusion. Predetermined set of minutes allows for energy accumulation. Having a question or problem in mind will keep energies from being mindlessly dispersed.
  11. So is it possible to really have a `vision’ / to `see’?
  12. Not for all – but many do manage to achieve this over a period of time. Others will receive answers & guidance either in a dream state / or in a state of semi wakefulness. Yet others may simply experience positive changes in their life without knowing why.
  13. So what is the effect it brings into your life?
  14. When cause becomes visible – effect gains a new meaning. You create a new cause that overpowers the old one – and you automatically create a new effect.
  15. Start with something mundane & see how it goes, I was told. If the energies of the mantra are in synchronicity with you, results will be fast, or else keep persisting till you bring them into synchronicity.
  16. Ok. So I started with my stray dogs. I wanted acceptance for the lone single stray by the remaining family of 2. I wanted to see a bond, not resistance & aggression.
  17. Day 1 ends. Evening. My dogs are moving towards being a family. Location wise, the lone stray has made an entry & has been grudgingly accepted.
  18. Day 2 ends. Evening. My dogs are a family & they now eat together. That’s really quick.
    I’m convinced enough to try more. I have a list of happenings for which I need some answers. It’s important for me to know `why’. And no dream state analysis or semi-wakefulness for me. I want to experience `seeing’. It will be either that or nothing.
  19. Regression is a backward journey – so start with your absolute present – the most recent, I was told.
  20. Regression is a dangerous journey – so expect the unexpected – sometimes what you see may be `toxic’ – but it’s already past – so it can’t hurt you – you’ll be safe, I was told.
  21. Regression is a truthful journey – often what you experienced as hurtful / magical may simply be a debt you paid / received & cleared your dues – you cannot hold on to it – you cannot move further up the ladder without releasing the lower rungs, I was told. Movement comes from understanding & acceptance to release the old & embrace the new.
  22. Carl Jung, Dr Brian Weiss, my own vedic mantras, meditation techniques, astrology – and the like – have always taken me down a familiar road in my journey – regression into my past – the causes of my present effects – I have experienced all – but I have never really pursued any one practice to the finish.
  23. This time, I feel differently. I want to shrug off excess baggage – physically, emotionally & karmically. At times, I identify & internalize too much – the fears, failures, problems, insecurities & guilt of others. That is the burden I want to shrug off. So Nam Myho Renge Kyo – might be worth a sincere try.
  24. Call it beginners’ luck – but right now I have a week all to myself – more than enough to get me into the groove.
  25. It might also explain why my impending trip to Shirdi never fell in place. Come in peace, come in understanding, come in acceptance & come lighter. Come because you want to, and not because you have to – that seems to be the message.

Well. So be it. Hopefully soon.

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Words

Words

What is about “words” that our ancestors of yore cautioned us so much about?

Utter words with care…be careful what you say, it may just come true… blessings… curses… tathastu (so be it)… Saraswati sits on the tip of his/her tongue… he/she has a `black tongue’ etc. etc.

Words are an external manifestation of inner energies. The energies that we suck in from the universe via eyes (vision), ears (sounds), nose (smell), mouth (taste) skin (touch) – can be thrown outwards through only one medium – words: expression, communication.

Hence what we utter carry lot of significance. It is a sum total of energies pulled inwards through all 5 senses + our 6th sense (perception) – and thrown outwards through “words”.

Words are sound vibrations. So they have a scientific base. Each syllable that we utter vibrates to a certain point in the musical octave. So the string of words that we utter – are like a series of musical notes. When there is a ring of “truth”, we create music. When we say something mindlessly, things that are not in sync with our inner thoughts, we create noise, cacophony.

Music is soothing & healing. Noise is not. It is with this scientific background that sages & rishis of ancient India mastered “words”. When they spoke, they spoke the truth & made sense. Else they chose not to speak at all.

Words have to power to create. The sum total of inner creations can be brought into existence by uttering the right words. It is this power that was harnessed while scripting our myriad “stotrams” & “shlokas” to God Almighty. The words were strategically stringed together, by those empowered to do so. And when we uttered those words on a daily basis – with the belief that it is “true”, we automatically created that which we uttered, over a period of time. For eg. when we chant the MahaMrityunjaya strotram that says “kim no mrityu karishyati” in Sanskrit – meaning “don’t give me untimely death” – we automatically create that reality in our lives.

Examples from scriptures point to Yudhisthir from Mahabharata & Lord Rama from Ramayana. They always spoke the truth & their power to create or destroy stemmed from their ability to string the right set of words together. The “vachan” in Sanskrit simply means “word” – but uttered with utmost purity & in utmost truth – it becomes indefeatable, and hence it’s also called a “promise” – that which must not be broken.

Durvasa was another sage in Hindu mythology who was known for his immense ability to accumulate spiritual power through torturous meditation. Sadly, he had 1 more trait. He uttered words without thinking. Every time, he uttered a word without meaning to, he lost a bit of his earned spiritual power. This became his Achilles heel. Every time someone wanted him to lose his power, they would egg him on, to utter something angry or something he didn’t mean from inside. The energies of his unintended words became so overpowering – that they created a foul smell around his body, hence the name Dur-vasa (bad smell).

I recently re-discovered the power of words with my stray dogs in the colony. My housing colony has a bunch of strays that divide themselves territorially amongst the various buildings. My building lobby plays home to a family of 3. I have been observing them since the boy & girl met each other; mated; and had a set of 6 pups from which just 1 girl pup survived. Cute weather beaten mongrels all; each with a distinct personality; extremely family oriented.

The boy whom I have named Tango picks up trot with me whenever I go towards my car & waits till I drop him his expected pack of Parle-G biscuits. The daughter, who I have named Charlie, follows but keeps a distance & wards off any intruders to her daddy’s food. A usual routine.

Around MahaShivratri this year, when we returned back to city from a small journey, the usual welcomes & routine followed unbroken. It took me few days to notice that mom dog was missing. I checked with my security to learn that she was run-over by a car in the parking, that was turning at a high speed. Crushed & died instantly.

It broke my heart. The next day when I went down, I patted Tango & Charlie for longer than usual. Then I looked into their eyes & said “I’m sorry for your loss; I’m sorry you lost your mom”. I probably said it more times than I should & I said it every time I saw them.

The otherwise happy dogs started brooding; they curled up in different corners; slept though-out the day; refused to eat; and if you went near them, they stared at you with eyes welled up from inside just short of tears. Intensely human & seriously grieving. This went on for days.

My better-half joked that it was my words of condolence that brought on the act of grieving; so maybe I should experiment by saying something nice to them. This, I tried. Everytime I went down, I spoke to the dogs separately – happy, peppy, motivating stuff. I don’t care if I looked ridiculous, but it worked. 2 days later, father & daughter curled up nose-to-nose; and back to their simple, joyous, mundane existence.

I went a step further & tried something else. I noticed another lonely stray emaciated mongrel who wasn’t being given territorial entry by my dogs. Every time I went down, I tell my dogs to open their hearts & concede. It’s been 3 days now, and mongrel has been allowed entry into the periphery.

Words. They work. That’s why it hurts me when people use them without thinking; without meaning to; randomly; carelessly; without caution.

Words. Weapons of power. Sound vibrations that we can use, to externalize & create our inner universes, in the outside world – the same words that can also destroy, all that we have created, in a single go.

Hmm. Whoever said it was easy to create music?