Slugging It Out Towards Unity

Posted: November 17, 2015 in Uncategorized
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by James C. Stephens

July 14, 1972


Russ Isobe, Jim Jay my old district leader, me, and Bruce Barnes who was my best man. Photo taken in front of Myohoji Temple sometime in 1976. We were wearing NY Convention uniform.

Much definitely has changed in the last two weeks. On July 1, I really yelled at Jim Jay about our relationship. I didn’t really yell at all, but it was a serious discussion. I said I just could not take on-shitsuing him. It is like a feeling of slugging him some moment. He said he had the same feeling. Well, then I said we must change it. He said we must talk more about our problems as a district and I said that if we don’t open up how can we understand. He said well, once I open up you take it personally. I said that the way you open up, you have to change that too. It was definitely the first time we ever talked so frankly. It was a definite obstacle to our growth and our district’s growth.

The next morning I left for Mammoth to visit my mom and brother. It was really a fantastic vacation. I did so much, played pool, hiked, fished, paddled around in a canoe, got drunk, danced, met people and in general had a hell of a good time. My brother gave me a pair of Scott Competition poles, the best you can get. Of course I brought Ron a backpacking fry mess kit and Mom some See’s Candy. She really loved them.

Before I left to see them Dad got served the divorce papers. And after I got back dad seemed noticeably different. His fiance picked me up. She is really a wicked person. That night July 4, we had our Shimakura Chiyoko Show. It really had a deep impact on Ginger. I was deeply moved by Shimakura and by our Min-on movement! Ginger and her son Shawn and my dad were very impressed. Afterward we went out and had dinner.

I really chanted for the best to come out of my dad’s engagement to her, and it did. He broke it off. He really saw her true aspect. I’m definitely happy for him.

My new job is putting me through some human revolution. I’m working with some Italian Sicilians and boy I can really see how people are. Freddy, was a member or leader of a gang in New Jersey during his young days, but now he’s old and gray at 35 and very unhappy. Because I am young and have the Gohonzon he, I am sure, is really seeking something he is missing in his life. When we are alone he really opens up, but because he is still in animality when alot of other workers are with him, he reverts to a rough working class attitude. It is really ashame, because he has so much potential as a great human being and very warm at that.

I don’t especially enjoy washing toilets and carpets, and painting, and cleaning kitchens, but I am deeply realizing something about life specifically. I definitely must go back to school and pour my whole being into become the best political science student. I am sure I can do it. I dream of being a teacher.

Sogohonbucho gave us guidance and said, “When you call money by money it will not come. But the name of money is Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. It will definitely come. Just as Nichiren said, if you chant the daimoku, fortune will travel millions of miles to you.”

I believe in Sogohonbucho. His guidance is definitely what keeps me chanting. He is the best example with Pres. Ikeda. Now I have many personal obstacles, but am sure with a determined spirit and more daimoku I can reverse the situation.

A new obstacle happended, while my car was in the shop for the last two weeks. Someone stole my license plates and with a stolen credit card ran up a bill with Union Oil of $1200. This is not a small matter. I must chant much more to change my lack of fortune.


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