Climate Change Protest

Bournemouth Climate Change March - Click to view the Bournemouth Echo articleThe sun shone and the weather was lovely and warm in Bournemouth today.

All good news for those folks who joined the Climate Change March, part of a worldwide protest against the continued lack of meaningful action by governments to slow or reverse the disastrous effects of global warming.

I get all my gas and electricity from Ecotricity, who produce and sell 100% green energy, and I try to do as much as possible to reduce my carbon footprint, but it all got me thinking about my Buddhism and the topic of Life-Energy.

When we practice gongyo and chant daimoku before the Gohonzon, the good and evil capacities of our lives begin to function as the exalted form of fundamental existence.

Lives that are full of the pain of Hell, lives that are in the world of Hunger, lives warped by the world of Anger – such lives too begin to move in the direction of creating their own personal happiness and value.

Lives being pulled toward misfortune and unhappiness are redirected and pulled in the opposite direction, toward fortune and happiness, when we make the Mystic Law our base.

Chant daimoku with all your heart, chant whenever you feel downcast, whenever you feel listless or lacking in focus.

Chanting daimoku connects us directly to chi, the Universal energy, the ultimate renewable energy, so chant and raise your life-state, your life-energy and put your life back on track.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

Exalted Forms Of Existence

Forms Of Renewable EnergyWhen we practice gongyo and chant daimoku before the Gohonzon, the good and evil capacities of our lives begin to function as the exalted form of fundamental existence.

Lives that are full of the pain of Hell, lives that are in the world of Hunger, lives warped by the world of Anger – such lives too begin to move in the direction of creating their own personal happiness and value.

Lives being pulled toward misfortune and unhappiness are redirected and pulled in the opposite direction, toward fortune and happiness, when we make the Mystic Law our base.

Chant daimoku with all your heart, chant whenever you feel downcast, whenever you feel listless or lacking in focus.

Chanting daimoku connects us directly to chi, the Universal energy, the ultimate renewable green energy, so chant and raise your life-state, your life-energy and put your life back on track.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

Giving It Everything

Cycling HeavenFor all I know, Daisaku Ikeda may well be a keen cyclist, but whatever his interest, these thoughts sum up exactly why we push ourselves till it hurts on an all too frequent basis …

People shouldn’t hesitate to exert their all, in a way true to themselves. How can you possibly ever know how far or fast you can go if you’ve never run all-out? To give up before you’ve even tried is actually arrogance – an affront to the wondrous power of life within you and disrespectful to yourself.

There may be times when others seem enviable. But others are others, and you are you. Rather than comparing your joys and sorrows to those of others, you should aim to surpass your limits in the situation you are in right now. Those who can do this are the true victors in life.

Now who’s up for a 75km ride tonight, that’ll put me on just over 1000km for the month of June.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

All Along The Prom, Tiddly Om Pom Pom

All Along The Prom, Tiddly Om Pom PomI love my new teaching role. I look forward to teaching my Saudi students and we get on famously.

But every silver lining has a cloud, and the cloud in this case is the fact that I can’t cycle to work and teach on the same day.

However, because Friday is the Muslim holy day, I don’t teach my boys on Fridays, and that leaves me free to ride to work … hoorah !!!

So just before 7:00, I was up and out on t’ bike and heading off towards Sandbanks and the promenade ride to Christchurch and thence to Ringwood. It’s a lovely ride, with lots of changes in environment en-route.

The ride through Poole Quay is always interesting. Fishing boats, RNLI lifeboats, any number of plastic gin palaces line the route, and there is always a distinct smell of the sea present too, though I have no idea why that should be more so at that point.

The cycle path around Whitecliff Park is often a challenge. Not because it is hilly, but because it it usually packed with joggers, walkers and dogs both on and off the lead. That isn’t the case at 7:00am however and I was soon nipping out of Turks Lane and onto Sandbanks Road through Lilliput.

Unless the weather is particularly wild, you never notice the wind direction when you drive. On a bike you are affected far more by the meteorological conditions, so by the time I came down the far side of Evening Hill, I was aware that my journey time was not going to be wind assisted.

You could count the number of people on the prom on the fingers of one hand, so progress was not going to be impaired dodging the pedestrians, but the flags were confirming my initial thoughts. It was going to be a long ride to Christchurch, 11.2km to be precise, into the teeth of a 30khp head wind, with no hope of respite at any point along the shore line.

Of course I am over-dramatising the situation, I had an hour and a half to complete the journey, and a little breeze wasn’t going to stop me getting to work. And it didn’t, but it did make the challenge that little bit more difficult.

Between Alum Chine and Bournemouth Pier, I rode with a chap on a vintage Bianchi road bike. As you might expect, we talked about our bikes, as all cyclists do, and discussed the conditions. We agreed that, as Sod’s law comes into play at times like this, the breeze would be coming from the West for the evening ride home. At the Pier, we bade each other farewell and he headed off towards Lansdowne, I continued on along the seafront.

The prom gets narrower as you approach Southbourne, and the wind seemed to be funnelled along the cliff face, making progress yet more challenging. So by the time I reached the up-ramp, just after a deserted Bistro On The Beach, I had had my fill of having my legs whipped by the wind blown sand.

In comparison, the journey through Christchurch, up Stony Lane, through Burton and Sopley, following the Hampshire Avon through Avon, and on to Ringwood was a breeze (no pun intended).

I arrived at work in plenty of time, though the journey had taken rather longer than usual. And you can bet your shirt on the fact that the wind direction will have changed by the time I set off for home.

It Might Be You

It Might Be YouSome people are always ‘up’ for things, they walk around with a smile and a spring in their step, they are Radiators. Other folks always seem to wear a frown, they look as though they are carrying the worries of the world on their shoulders. They never seem to have a good word to say about anything, they are the Drains.

A Radiator is the kind of person who leaves you feeling more energetic and enthused, after you meet or speak to them, than before. They radiate positive energy and are happy to share their life-energies with others. They appear to have a permanent smile on their faces, as though they know something others do not. In fact they do, they know that the secret path to a happy life is to pass on their happiness to others.

Drains are the complete opposite. They have the unfortunate knack of being able to sap energy and enthusiasm from other people, leaving them feeling unhappy or flat. When you meet one, and there are plenty around, the conversation is hard work, they are negative about things when you ask about how they are. In fact, you probably walk away wishing you hadn’t met them in the first place.

Our life-state can dictate whether we are a Radiator or a Drain if we let it, but concentrating on the positive side of life can change all that. When we are in the life state of Heaven we tend to Radiate energy to other people, when we are in Hell we can tend to Drain energy from others.

So think of all the good things in your life, walk around with a smile and a cheerful disposition, be a Radiator and see how people react positively towards you.

We all know a Drain when we meet one, and if you don’t, then it might just be  you.

Is It You?

Radiators And DrainsThere are two types of people in this world, and no not those who say ‘There are two types of people’ and those who don’t. The two types are those who are Radiators and those who are Drains.

A Radiator is the kind of person who leaves you feeling more energetic and enthused, after you meet or speak to them, than before. They radiate positive energy and are happy to share their life-energies with others. They appear to have a permanent smile on their faces, as though they know something others do not. In fact they do, they know that the secret path to a happy life is to pass on their happiness to others.

Drains are the complete opposite. They have the unfortunate knack of being able to sap energy and enthusiasm from other people, leaving them feeling unhappy or flat. When you meet one, and there are plenty around, the conversation is hard work, they are negative about things when you ask about how they are. In fact, you probably walk away wishing you hadn’t met them in the first place.

Our life-state can dictate whether we are a Radiator or a Drain if we let it, but concentrating on the positive side of life can change all that. When we are in Heaven we tend to Radiate energy to other people, when we are in Hell we Drain energy from others.

So think of all the good things in your life, walk around with a smile and a cheerful disposition, be a Radiator and see how people react positively towards you.

We all know a Drain when we meet one, and if you don’t, then it’s you.

Green Energy

Chanting - The Ultimate Renewable EnergySwitching energy providers from British Gas to Ecotricity will do much more than simply save me money each month. They produce and sell 100% green energy, that got me thinking about Buddhism and Life-Energy.

When we practice gongyo and chant daimoku before the Gohonzon, the good and evil capacities of our lives begin to function as the exalted form of fundamental existence.

Lives that are full of the pain of Hell, lives that are in the world of Hunger, lives warped by the world of Anger – such lives too begin to move in the direction of creating their own personal happiness and value.

Lives being pulled toward misfortune and unhappiness are redirected and pulled in the opposite direction, toward fortune and happiness, when we make the Mystic Law our base.

Chant daimoku with all your heart, chant whenever you feel downcast, whenever you feel listless or lacking in focus.

Chanting daimoku connects us directly to chi, the Universal energy, the ultimate renewable energy, so chant and raise your life-state, your life-energy and put your life back on track.

Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

Come On The Boys

Bristol Rovers vs. Scunthorpe UtdMaking good use of my time up in Bristle, I was pleased to go along to the Bristol Rovers vs. Scunthorpe United game, at the Memorial Ground this afternoon. Rob, his Dad Barry and Jake are avid Gas Heads, and I am accepted as an honorary fan whilst I’m up there.

It was the first home game, so the ground was buzzing, but Rovers are suffering from a spate of pre-season injuries, with nine of the senior players unavailable, including Chelsea old boy Danny Woodards. So it was left to the youth to take on Scunny, with Brian Laws’ side renowned for their passing abilities, albeit that they were relegated last season.

Tom Parkes Stretchered OffShortly after kick off, The Gas suffered another blow as captain Tom Parkes was stretchered off with concussion, being substituted by the exotically named Santos. So it was left up to the talented younger squad members to take on a much more mature Scunthorpe side.

In fairness, Scunny had the best of the play, hitting both posts in the first half, but to give them their due, Rovers makeshift side put in enough hard work, energy and determination to be well worth the point they took from the 0-0 result.

Whilst there was a little doom and gloom around the ground as the crowd made their way home, the quality of the youth on show bodes well for the future of the team, assuming they can manage to hold onto the talent. Have faith you Gas Heads.

W.C.C … It’s Not Cricket You Know

Cricket_BallHave you ever had a problem or situation that has been rumbling around for a while, but you can’t drum up the enthusiasm to fix? I know you have, we all have. Maybe enthusiasm is not the right word, maybe energy, or confidence is a better one.

Perhaps you should have made a phone call, written a letter, or gone to see someone, but you know they aren’t going to be too pleased to hear from you when you do.

When I say you know, it’s probably more accurate to say you imagine, you suppose, see what I mean? We all build up little scenarios in our heads, and the more often we think about the problem, the more convinced we become, that our imagined outcome is what will actually happen. Our fundamental darkness will also do its best to confirm our worst fears.

This is where we need a bit of W.C.C … Wisdom, Courage and Compassion.

We need the Wisdom to see that what we imagine is the version of events from our point of view, and may be way off. We also need to accept that any problem that is left to fester, will only get worse and never go away by itself.

We need a deal of Courage to put ourselves into a situation that may be awkward, embarrassing or painful (hopefully not physically). Picking up that phone, or ringing that door bell, when we are unsure of the reception, takes guts. But remember that the alternative may be even worse.

Now we need a huge dollop of Compassion. The fact that we have put off doing something about this issue probably means that we feel that we are in the wrong, in some way. So we need to steel ourselves for a potential tirade, whilst remaining calm and sympathetic. We need to understand the problem from the other persons point of view. That will take a dialogue of some nature, and maintaining a compassionate nature may help defuse the situation. We need to bite our tongue when we may feel like giving a little back. I don’t mean a complete capitulation, more a flexible approach to understanding their side of things.

I imagine that each and every person who reads this has an issue, be it large or small, that falls into this category. Only you know what it is, so gird your loins, take a deep breath, and get it sorted today. You’ll feel a lot better when you do, believe me, I know from experience.

Major Relapse

Running A TemperatureWho would have believed it? Having had a huge dollop of stress lifted from my shoulder yesterday, I have succumbed to a major relapse, physically. My wheezing has returned, my joints ache, my nose is running like a tap and my back is pure agony. What has happened?

I know there is a great deal of research that shows that people who go on holiday, after a heavy time at work, very often come down with some bug or another. It’s almost as if the body relaxes too much, and leaves itself open to infection.

I was suffering with my back at the weekend, and being surrounded by the grandchildren may well have been the source of infection. But it’s really annoying to have to struggle through, on the first day of a new job, albeit in the same company.

So don’t try to contact me tonight, I’m going to go home, chant my heart out for half an hour, get undressed and tuck myself into my bed. I need to give this illness the heave hoe, I don’t want to be sick for my first week in this new position.

It will be interesting to see how I feel in the morning.

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