56:52What does Buddhism say about happiness? Better yet, how do we access it and sustain it, especially when faced with difficulties? In today’s episode, Rachel Salomonsen and Jim Krampf talk us through two of the biggest challenges to our happiness—our relationships with loved ones and situations in which we are faced with impossibly difficult circumstances. Here’s the key takeaway: By chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo and taking full responsibility for our happiness, we can become people of conviction and tolerance—key qualities of a life of sustainable happiness. Note: Buddhist Solutions for Life’s Problems is supported by subscriptions to SGI-USA publications. It will be published every other month. For access to past podcasts, the print and online editions of World Tribune and Living Buddhism and the new World Tribune app, visit worldtribune.org.References:This episode is based on the feature article from the March 2022 issue of Living Buddhism titled “Sustainable Happiness.”7:25: October 2020 Living Buddhism, p. 15.28:18: The Wisdom for Creating Happiness and Peace, revised edition, p. 230.28:54: “On the Buddha’s Prophecy,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 402.45:34: “Happiness in This World,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 681.48:03: “Reply to Kyo’o,” The Writings of Nichiren Daishonin, vol. 1, p. 412.49:14: The New Human Revolution, vol. 2, revised edition, pp. 86–87.51:48: The Five Eternal Guidelines of the Soka Gakkai, p. 20.
Love and Relationships
49:11Love is complicated, whether it’s finding a partner, making a relationship work or healing from heartbreak. Today we’re discussing what we can learn from Buddhism about how to navigate its highs and lows. The episode features the unique relationship journeys of three individuals, Tanisha Coleman, Rafael Valentin and Sara Luther, and how each used their Buddhist practice to find happiness. Here’s the key takeaway: In order To find lasting, value-creative love, we have to first develop self-love based on our own human revolution.Note: Buddhist Solutions for Life’s Problems is supported by subscriptions to SGI-USA publications. It will be published every other month. For access to past podcasts, the print and online editions of World Tribune and Living Buddhism and the new World Tribune app, visit www.worldtribune.org.References:This episode is based on the feature article from the October 2021 issue of Living Buddhism titled “A Buddhist View of Love.” 2:53 Discussions on Youth, p. 65.6:09 Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Airman’s Odyssey (Orland: Harcourt, 1984), p. 195.7:19 Discussions on Youth, p. 65.9:50 Discussions on Youth, p. 70.16:18 Soar Into the Skies of Hope, pp. 68–69.16:58 Discussions on Youth, p. 310.18:15 The New Human Revolution, vol. 26, p. 110.24:49 Discussions on Youth, p. 69.40:16 The New Human Revolution, vol. 25, p. 283.41:34 The New Human Revolution, vol. 5, p. 78.48:12 The Wisdom for Creating Happiness and Peace, revised part 1, p. 230.
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Part 3: “Defying the Odds” (Buddhism and Business)
34:52The third and final story in our miniseries on Buddhism and business features the story of Toki Masubuchi, a restauranteur in Kentucky who defied the odds to build successful, community-driven Japanese-Mexican restaurants.Key point: Chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo allows you to tap into unlimited reserves of energy and fortitude to keep working toward even the most impossible goals.Note: This will be the final set of episodes of Buddhist Solutions of Life’s Problems. Going forward, the show will be accessible for subscribers of the SGI-USA publication, World Tribune.
Part 2: “Never Giving Up” (Buddhism and Business)
25:17The second story in our miniseries on Buddhism and business features the story of Mitika Khera and how she used her Buddhist practice to find her voice working in a competitive corporate environment.Key point: Never giving up is the key to victory.Note: This will be the final set of episodes of Buddhist Solutions of Life’s Problems. Going forward, the show will be accessible for subscribers of the SGI-USA publication, World Tribune.
Part 1: “A Clear Sense of Purpose” (Buddhism and Business)
1:04:36The first story in our miniseries on Buddhism and business features the story of Luis Nieves, an entrepreneur with an epic story of building one of the most successful auto insurance businesses in the country, based on a desire to change his karma.Key point: A clear sense of purpose and responsibility allows you to defy the greatest odds.Note: This will be the final set of episodes of Buddhist Solutions of Life’s Problems. Going forward, the show will be accessible for subscribers of the SGI-USA publication, World Tribune.
Buddhism and Business (Introduction)
10:30Today we’re releasing a miniseries on Buddhism and business, which covers what SGI Nichiren Buddhism says about winning at work and how to apply your practice of chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo to your job. This first episode unpacks key concepts and introduces how the series is structured.Note: This will be the final set of episodes of Buddhist Solutions of Life’s Problems. Going forward, the show will be accessible for subscribers of the SGI-USA publication, World Tribune.
A Buddhist Perspective on Mental Health
57:09Today’s episode is about mental health, which was one of our most requested topics of the year. Because there’s so much to cover, it’s divided into four parts, which you can listen to all at once, or you can check the show notes for time stamps to skip to the section that most resonates with you, though they are best understood in total.Part 1 (4:33)We discuss what the Buddhist definition of health is and how we’re defining mental health on this episode, through a conversation with two mental health professionals who happen to also practice SGI Nichiren Buddhism, therapist Mindy Milam and psychiatrist Bora Colak. Both have different backgrounds in the mental health field and were able to share some insight on the parallels they see between their personal Buddhist practice and their professional experiences in the field of mental health.Part 2 (20:55)We hear the incredible story of a young woman named Yuko Miyama about her own mental health struggles, specifically with PTSD and depression.Part 3 (37:42)We talk to Maya Gunaseharan, Young Women’s Leader of SGI-USA about what the Buddhist perspective on mental health is, and what it takes to care for someone, whether it’s a loved one or someone in your community who is struggling with a serious mental health issue. Part 4 (46:15)Ten concrete takeaways from the episode, based on Buddhist wisdom, if you are currently struggling with your mental health. It’s important to note that this looks different for everybody and Buddhism is reason, meaning it's extremely important to seek out professional help if you feel that is what you need. Buddhism is not an alternative to mental health support but instead a way to help you believe in yourself and manifest the wisdom and courage required to fight for your health and be the best version of you that you can be.
Buddhism and Creativity
33:57On this episode, we discuss what Buddhism calls “the creative life force,” an inner potential that exists in the life of every person to manifest their most authentic self and create art from that place. Often, self-doubt, perfectionism or arrogance can get in the way of creating great art. Special guests Wayne Shorter and Esperanza Spalding, along with a few other artists, explain three concrete ways to use Buddhism to develop your creative life force.
The Buddhist Perspective on Racism
1:07:36At its root, racism is born of a very human tendency that exists in all of us to discriminate against others, often out of fear. Combined with power, this discrimination becomes institutionalized and we see it in virtually every social system in America—economic, health, education, policing and so on. Buddhism directly addresses the root of this problem and many more.In this episode we speak with Dr. Lawrence Edward Carter Sr., dean of the Martin Luther King International Chapel at Morehouse College, as well as a number of Black Buddhists and other members in the SGI community about how they are using their practice to grapple with and speak out against racism in their own unique ways.
Being Buddhist Parents
34:46The parent-child relationship is a truly universal one. We are all the children of someone, and our relationship with our parents impacts us forever. This episode explores what Buddhism says about being a parent and how to foster children who can blossom fully, just as they are.