Whether our prayers are answered or not depend on our faith in the Gohonzon and how we chant daimoku. Owing to the strong faith in the Gohonzon from Sujata Nandy, a 39 years old WD member from India, her brother – whom she introduced Nichiren Buddhism to and encouraged him to chant – managed to achieve a victory in his life that seemed impossible. Read on to find out what happened in their lives after they took up faith.
“Spare no effort in offering up prayers with firm faith. It is not that my resolve (To save you) is weak. Rather, it depends on the strength of each person’s faith.”
I have been practicing this life transforming philosophy for the last two and half years and through my practice, I realized that our determination and actions should always be based on faith. I am happy to report that through this practice in Nichiren Buddhism, I’ve received much conspicuous and inconspicuous benefits, one of which I’m going to share now that happened recently.
From a young age, my brother suffered from high myopia, which increased as he grew old. After a certain age, though his power stagnated to -19 for both the eyes. The doctor informed us that as a high myopic patient, there were chances that his retina may get detached anytime. He was under the supervision of doctors from both Kolkata and Hyderabad.
The situation got worse in August 2008. I got a call from my mother that my brother was not able to see anything through his right eye. The doctor in Kolkata took a few days to investigate the matter and finally suggested to operate that eye.
But my brother was determined to do that operation in Hyderabad and immediately we went to LV Prasad eye institute in Hyderabad and met the doctor who had been diagnosing my brother from last few years. She said it was already too late and she can’t assure any big hope and even if the operation is successful, only part of his vision may come back. It was a situation where he had nothing to lose. With this mind frame and complete trust on the doctor, my brother agreed to undergo the operation.
During the operation, his anxiety and fear lad to high eye pressure and that in turn resulted in an eye hemorrhage. The operation had taken more than four hours. It was indeed a terrible experience for my brother and I. The doctor examined his eye 20 days after the operation and told us that only 25% of his vision could be regained. Because of the effects of the strong medications, he might have to undergo a cataract operation after one or two years.
After four months since the operation, I was introduced to Nichiren Buddhism by one of my close friend from Bangalore. My leaders asked me to pray earnestly to achieve my personal goals. Along with the other prayers, I was also constantly praying for improvement to my brother’s eyesight. To be precise, I prayed that his retina should not get detached again and his eyesight should improve.
As my practice and understanding about Nichiren Buddhism grew, my faith on the Gohonzon also became stronger. I was confident that my earnest prayers will definitely be answered.
In Sep 2009, I introduced my brother to this practice. Initially he took up faith because I had asked him to do so. He didn’t had absolute faith in the practice and was not focused on his gongyo and daimoku. But he attended meetings in Kolkata.
Meanwhile, during our visits to Hyderabad for his check-ups, which was scheduled twice a year, to increase my brother’s faith in the Gohonzon, I used to read out various encouraging quotes from Sensei’s guidance and extracts from the Gosho.
To encourage him in his struggle to keep his faith in life, I used to read the various experiences that the member’s shared in Value Creation and other journals.
On 7 Apr 2011, my brother had the cataract operation on his right eye that was scheduled long back. Before the operation, we both had gone to meet the Head of the Department of Cataract in LV Prasad Hospital.
After the usual check-up, he told us something unusual that was hard for me to believe. He assured my brother that after the cataract operation, his eye power may come down from -19 to -8. We couldn’t believe our ears. To show my gratitude to Gohonzon, I silently chanted daimoku in the doctor’s chamber.
Before the operation, my brother and I had chanted wholeheartedly for the protection and the doctor’s life condition to be elevated to that of a Buddha.
Next day, after the operation, when we had gone for a checkup, my jaws dropped when I saw my brother reading the tiniest alphabet without wearing his glasses.
It reminded me of this line from the Gosho where Nichiren Daishonin said, “If the water of your faith is clear, the moon of Blessings will surely cast its reflection on it and protect you.”
Though he still has a power of -19 in his left eye, I am sure that some day it will come down, as it has happened in case of his right eye. I have full faith in my prayers.
I would like to share with everyone the following guidance from Ikeda sensei, which gives me hope:
“Result is a reflection of your faith in the Gohonzon. Whatever you are thinking in front of the Gohonzon will be true for you. Are you thinking failure or victory? Are you trying to tell the Gohonzon how to solve your problems or are you turning over your heart’s desire with unlimited trust to the Gohonzon? The Gohonzon’s power is beyond the comprehension of our minds. This is why we call it mystic. Our challenge is to dream of results as big as the power of the Gohonzon, which has no limit. With this attitude of faith, you can tap the infinite power of joy, gratitude and victory. If you find you are stuck, pray to release the chains of doubt and fear clouding your mind of faith. Pray for unbounded confidence and courage to win over your past and joyfully step into your bright future.”
At the end, I would like to say that my personal struggles related to job, finance or relationship is still on. Surprisingly, instead of getting worried about the situation, I deal with it calmly.
Nichiren Daishonin’s writings, Ikeda sensei’s guidance and my fellow members’ support have constantly encouraged me to face the adverse situations with a positive approach. I am continuously and sincerely praying to expiate my negative karmas in the process, so that one day when I emerge victorious, I can report a total victory to all of you.
Because it will not be my victory, only…….it will be a victory for all of you who have supported me throughout my struggle.