Posts Tagged ‘Sancho Goma’

by James C. Stephens

Thursday, April 22, 1977

Days are getting warmer, but the nights are still cool enough to sleep well. A lot has transpired in the past week and a half. Friday last I and about 10 other guys took out our friend Bob Rafkin and got him drunk as a skunk, since he was getting married the next day. We went to McGinty’s, the Fox Inn. Had a great time, that is until the morning. I can’t remember having such a big hangover. Boy was I in pain. Luckily I made it to the wedding in time, although I ended up doing Gongyo in the back of a Mustang sitting next to a trash bin for the champagne.

That wedding was very groovy. As a matter of fact I had a most interesting thing happen, but maybe it was nothing. I was supposed to get a ride back with the guy I rode with-Sal Rivas, but it ended up I rode back with Suzanne Harris. Now before I left, I thanked the priest for the use of the temple. He said thank you for cleaning it so well afterwards.

He then said, “Are you married?”

“No,” I replied.

“When you get married you’ll have to use the temple.”

I said, “Of course.”

He then looked at me most seriously and said, “I think you will be getting married very soon.”  That freaked me for sure.

I rode back with Suzanne and Catherine a friend of the family. We had an interesting talk. She asked me lots of questions, age, length of practice, etc. I asked her many as well.

At times I think I make too much of such things, you know, read things into situations, make assumptions that have no base. Well I asked her out for dinner, but she had a guidance appointment with Mr. Kikimura. She explained to me that she was presently going through some heavy human revolution. The long and short of it is I became attracted to her.

Tuesday, I called her about 11:00 for a date, but all she said was when I asked her if she could talk or was she busy was- “Is it important, related to a meeting schedule?”

“No,” I said. “Okay, I’ll call some other time.”

Tonight I saw her at our general chapter meeting, but got the impression she was avoiding me like the plague. I asked her Shibucho, Don Mentzer, who is a favorite person of min, if he knew of any reason, or boyfriend, or situation why it would not be okay for me to ask her out. He said, “Well, she’s a tiger, Jim. She’s been through some men. But she changes, does human revolution. I don’t see why not.”

I didn’t get the best vibes from him, like maybe she wasn’t my type. So I couldn’t make connections with her. I’ve been so damned nervous about it, it hardly seems worth it. If she says no, well, if she says yes…

Daddy Long Legs Book CoverA bright note aside from my normal sancho goma problems which are pretty natural, is Mr. Bell talked to Rejicho about our literary group and thanked him for encouraging me and mentioned my name to him. He said he is very happy about the group and that members are trying to do these things. He then said he would like to suggest a book and pulled it from his shelf. It was in Japanese called Daddy Long Legs. He then explained. “It’s one of President Ikeda’s favorite books. You can read it in a night, it is short.” Believe me I am very encouraged!

Talked to Mr. Inabe at Malibu tonight. It seems his mother is extremely ill and he is going to Japan for two weeks. He doesn’t expect her to live. She is however in her nineties.

Mr. Inabe asked me if I could call all the Tobans from Santa Monica and North Hollywood and make sure they make it to Malibu. I said I’d be glad to.

I deeply like and respect this man, Mr. Inabe. He has pulled me through many heavy times.

April 29, 1977

Was so nervous and tired about asking Suzanne out. Called her. She has a boyfriend. Much relieved.


Bob passed away after a losing a bout with cancer in 2013. He was a great roommate. A genuinely nice guy and like an elder brother. I wished we would have kept in contact over the years. He is survived by his daughter Shelby Layne Rafkin. He was a very skilled guitarist who practiced 8 hours a day. “His career began rubbing shoulders with Bob Dylan and the folk scene of the ’60s in Greenwich Village. He was an in-demand session player in Los Angeles for years working with the likes of Joni Mitchell, Randy Newman, Gene Vincent, the Everly Brothers and the Lovin’ Spoonful.”

I remember Bob performing “I’d Rather Be An Outlaw.” It’s quite interesting in that my great grandfather John Wesley Stephens survived an attack from the railroad skinners who raided his ranch and stole his cattle to feed the laborers building the transcontinental railroad. Great Grandpa Stephens took 44 stitches after he was left for dead by the skinners and survived. He walked with a cane until his death.  He used to read the Book of Revelation to his family each Sunday evening at their home in Texas.

I also liked his song “Lazy Waters” which he composed for the Byrds, but I actually like his performance much better.


by James C. Stephens

Thursday, March 24, 1977

Raining steadily. Such a good feeling being warm, writing in my diary, drinking some apple juice and with nature’s natural background music, the rain.

I can say now I feel well, although physically I have taken a strong cold. About fifteen minutes ago I was wondering how this rumor about me having an affair with some girl got started. First, you know that I wasn’t. I took Pat Kremer out a couple of time, but it was an “interested, but not making any moves” type of relationship. It turned out we would be good friends, I desire no more.


Tonight after the YMD Senior leaders meeting I received guidance from Mr. Black and the question I asked was answered, but then the guidance started dealing with affairs, etc., like he had been told I was having one. He said, “Mr. Curtis had said you were having severe sancho goma problems.”  Well, I wondered at first, where this had all started. I’ve told two people very frankly about my relationship with Pat, Mr. Bell and Mr. Barnes. Mr. Barnes said he did not say anything to Soshibucho, but heard such a rumor.

I called Soshibucho at 11:30 PM. I confronted him about the rumors. He yelled. I disagreed with his approach. Strangely I did not get uptight when he yelled. Usually I did, but it leveled off into very good guidance about rumors. “First, ask yourself, why did this rumor get started? Are you communicating thoroughly enough? Not just to Chikabucho, but also to Shibucho?”

This I agreed was my problem area. Maybe this was the Gohonzon giving me a boot to overcome this problem. I have been trying; Mr. Inabe gave me guidance on this last night. And tonight I talked to Gib Black.

Gary CurtisWhen Soshibucho yelled at me saying it didn’t matter if I was or wasn’t, I told him, “Mr. Curtis I disagree (very flatly). He then talked to me normally. Understand it was a benefit for me that I could bring this conversation to this difficult level. I said, and he agreed, “it’s nobody’s damned business if you want to take some girl out.”

Anyway, I then called Mrs. Bell, since Soshibucho said he heard this rumor from two of my chapter leaders and he wouldn’t tell me who they were. But of course, I would like to straighten thing out and the only other person I told was Mr. Bell. They both said, “Wow, this is new to me. We’re puzzled, but just look at it as a reason to communicate.”

I told them jokingly, “Gee, I wish I had an affair to take credit for.”  We all laughed. But seriously, I told Mrs. Bell that I would get her okay first before going out with someone (member wise). She said, “I don’t think you have to, but you know I am always protective of you. I never want anything to happen to you again the way it did before.”

Strange, I feel closer to her or closer to her like a family, nay closer than most of my family. My Father is close, but Mom is not. Oh I wish we could be.

NSA is really the same as my family. The family of man as corny as that sounds. It really is.

by James C. Stephens

Sunday, December 13, 1976 12:40 a.m.

Many obstacles trying to stop my advance. I must somehow develop the spirit of a lion. Day by day towards the 21st Century.

Saturday night, I had a guest. Her name is Carma. She was greatly encouraged by meeting. Gave her a ride home. Had coffee. Controlled my Sancho Goma. Very difficult.

Oh, I don’t believe I told you. Scott and I started a Book society. Once a month we will read a book and discuss it. Each member of the society will in turn select a book for his month. Our group consists of Bruce Barnes, Scott Ferguson, two non-members which I have not yet met, and myself. First Book is Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.

Yoni Netanayahu killed in Raid on Entebbe

Saw a movie on the July 4th incident in Uganda of a terrorist hijacking of a plane with 200 people, 100 which were Jews. What a ghastly problem! It sickens me greatly. Fortunately the Israelis held a surprise attack which was successful in only 3 hostages were lost and 1 soldier. The terrorists were all gunned down. We were not so lucky at Munich. All the hostages lost their lives. Unfortunately terrorism is gaining a foothold in many movements, e.g., IRA.


Wake Up!

Posted: October 18, 2017 in Uncategorized

by James C. Stephens


Tuesday, May 18, 1976

Wake Up!

Only chasing my dream. “A fool climbs the tree to see the sunrise, while a wise man waits patiently,” an old Chinese proverb goes.

My enemy-Sancho Goma. I should not be chasing or searching for a companion. My heart calls out from loneliness. But life calls for my mission. Jihi-Shakubuku.Sunday we had practice at Angel Stadium for the Anaheim show. What a trip.


My primitive nature calls deeply for a mate. But inside I know I must wait. Thousands of miles I have traveled, 25 years I have come. Where she waits. Maybe at the next dawn or the next station. No sense in chasing the rainbow. Someday you’ll discover that it’s inside. One day she’ll bump into you and you’ll know.

Gohonzon has great mercy. Why give its children anything but the best?

by James C. Stephens

May 7, 1975

Well, I don’t know exactly where to begin. Conventions seems, nay they always do bring about such incredible changes in one’s life. As much is happening in my life. First I had gone through such a difficult Sancho Goma problem.

Then I got a job and car and caught my rent up. My job is now threatened which is in essence effecting my care and my home. Here’s the situation: Our business is photocopying records and serving legal documents; and we do it well. We have several established clients and they respect our work. So what’s the problem? Okay, the finances of our business have been on my bosses’ back. One of the girls in the office is in good with the big boys. Now the business is doing alright, but 2 of the 3 crew or should I say 3 of the crew of five have been laid off. Two of the field men were making $700-$750 per month compared to my $400 per month. Also one girl Jane was laid off.

Now I’m left to shoot all of the orders which two of us could barely handle. I called in sick today before I knew of the situation. About 9:30 Mr. Mitchell came by and informed me of what was up.  About 10:00 I got a call from Jody, telling me how I got in on the deal. At 10:30 I got a call from Lowell the big boss asking me to a meeting tomorrow morning.

Now, my landlord is fixing up the place and I asked him what his intentions were. He told me he’s selling the house. So I have a chance to go to Hawaii for 3 months, paid trip, furnished food and lodging. Shibucho said he can get me on the list. The next two days will tell the story.

[My journal for 1975 ended here as Scott and I both decided to take the plunge and go to Hawaii to be part of an 88 man stage crew that would prepare for the Blue Hawaii Pre-Bi-centennial Convention on Oahu for approximately 50,000 members. What an exciting adventure! We couldn’t pass it by! And never looked back].