Hello Everyone,


Among other things I have been grappling with the death of my father over a year and a half ago.  He was a longterm SGI member and passed away peacefully.  Since his passing, my mother, also an SGI member, has had numerous health issues needing remedy, including surgery for a tumor which brought her close to death, a resulting refusal to eat which we finally overcame with time and chanting, and the loss of her toes as a result of the surgery.


Can anyone please advise me if there is some phenomenon in our practice of Nichiren Daishonin's buddhism which might indicate that family members will experience additional struggles after the passing of a practicing family member, aside from events to be expected such as discord among family members?  It seemed to me that some of these circumstances are obstacles relating to the practice.  I am trying to see my way clear through all of this, and have experienced personal obstacles in addition to these.


Thank you!

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I really don't think you should be looking into special phenomena or connecting events re: your family. The simple fact is that the karma (health) of your family is there for you to 'chant' about and develop the polishing of your own life. I lost my mother to cancer in 1986. In 2005 I lost my father to health complicities (due to old age). My mother had a form of mental illlness all her life. Not long after her death, my father seems to have developed the same illness but he reacted violently (psychologically) and was NOT coping really well with it until I one day came home and stayed with him for the next 11 years. It was the most humbling time of my life trying to maintain a steady and strong practice, taking care of youth in my chapter, chapter leadership responsbilities at the same time groping with helping him along. It took almost 5-6 years before I was able to finally get his trust and cooperation so I could get him the proper medical help he needed. At least he was not suffering from psychotic episodes the last 5 years of his life. Going through this helped me to grow as a person and allowed me to see changes to make in my own life. Whatever the 'reasons' or recurring symptoms of health karma of your family, be determined to be calm center of the storm and be as steady with your own life in order for you to stand up and be the rock of your family.


Sorry you lost your mom so early in in life Dan. Hurray for your filiel piety. My hat is of to you. Have a great week-end. Sidenote for For Carrie. How fortunate that Father, Mother and Daughter all have close bonds with the mystic law. A family unit that will undoubtedly support each other lifetime after lifetime after lifetime.
Hi Dan,

I truly appreciate your posting of such a personal and trying, yet growth-filled experience. It certainly gives me food for thought.

Because of the events and the fractured relationships the family is experiencing, the thought crossed my mind that there is a type of karma which can happen after the passing of a practicing family member. This also makes me reflect further on the enlightenment of my father, and everything which has been done in support of this.

We will keep on keeping on, thank you again so much!
There are several Gosho about the death of a family member. My favorite one is "Hell is the Land of Tranquil Light"- written to Lady Ueno about her grief after the death of her husband. President Ikeda's lecture about this Gosho was published in Living Buddhism magazine last year, also published in Learning from the Writings, The Hope-Filled Teachings of Nichiren Daishonin- World Tribune Press 2009

Here is an excerpt:

Attaining or revealing, Buddhahood in one's preset form is not about acquiring special superhuman qualities, but rather it means achieving as ordinary human beings,an eternal and boundless state of life characterized by the virtues of eternity, happiness, true self and purity.

The benefits and blessings of the Mystic Law are immeasurable. All life-no matter in which of the Ten Worlds it may reside- is originally an entity of the Mystic Law. Therefore, even if at present we are in the state of hell, by changing our focus at that moment, we can immediately manifest our pure and highest state of life as entities of the Mystic Law. This is what it means to attain Buddhahood in our present form.

Naturally, "in our present form" doesn't mean attaining Buddhahood while wallowing in suffering or surrendering to indolence. What's required is a struggle to transform the moment-to-moment focus of our minds. Nichiren Daishonin revealed the Gohonzon, the object of devotion, so that anyone can undertake this struggle.

page 68

Also the Gosho- Winter Always Turns to Spring written to lay nun Myochi re her grief after the death of her husband- Present Ikeda's lecture on this Gosho also in the same book.


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