A Buddhist Podcast – Letter to the Brothers – August 2010

August 22nd, 2010

Welcome to another show! It has been a really long time, thank you for bearing with us. Jason has new work that requires a lot of hours and travel that we are still getting used to!

On tonights show we have a lecture on the letter that Nichiren Daishonin wrote to the Ikegami brothers in 1275, its called simply, “Letter to the Brothers”. Tonights lecture is based on President Ikeda’s lecture from SGI Newsletter 7832 and subjects include:

  • Buddhism is about overcoming negativity
  • Walking the talk, the first three presidents of the Soka Gakkai
  • The Dad, the priest, the wives and the brothers
  • Faith is believing in peoples greatness
  • We lose because of fear and influence
  • We win because of wisdom and courage
  • Three obstacles and four devils
  • Will power is not enough
  • United in purpose
  • Master your mind
  • Change within creates change without

We have wonderful experiences from Jay Osburn in Michigan (The artwork for this episode is of Charley) and Gerald White in Las Vegas in the US. We have shoutouts that really span the world and of course music. On tonights show we play Days of Summer by Now is Now and Lucky Day by Stavia, both courtesy of the Podsafe Music Network on musicalley.com

We send you our very best for a truly wonderful week and thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all your support and encouragement!


  1. A few Discussion Meetings ago, I was asked to lead a discussion on this Gosho, and drew from your last lecture on it for a little background material. That was a fine podcast, and this, even finer. I’m glad you included challenges the first three presidents of the Soka Gakkai had in common with Nichiren Daishonin and the two young men to whom he addressed his letter. Really put things in the proper perspective.

    As I’ve had a bout with fundamental darkness lately, I could identify…except that, for a while, I wasn’t nearly as wise or courageous. All is well now, though.

    This is such a huge benefit of your podcasts: Showing how the historical and theoretical apply to our own lives; encouraging us to recognize our strengths; and then chant to bring those strengths to bear on our respective obstacles. Another winner! Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Jarrett.


    Comment by Vittoria — August 29, 2010 @ 2:55 am

  2. WOW, Jason and Karen – although withdrawal symptoms were high since you last podcast, this was well, well, well worth the wait. Definately one of my favourite shows so far. It’s packed full of gems from the first words to the last, and even a few tears along the way. You both should be highly commended and continue to broadcast fantastic inspiration for myself, and I am sure for every single listener.
    Take great care of yourselves and I am already looking forward to the next show!


    Comment by Alan in Khon Kaen — August 29, 2010 @ 4:39 am

  3. Dear Mr. Jarrett

    I am a 43-year-old white male, who found your pod cast due to free time.
    I am currently unemployed.
    Do you believe in a hollow earth or hollowed earth?

    What separates Tibetan Buddhism from other sects?

    Must Buddhists be vegetarian?
    Must Buddhists give up all alcohol consumption?

    What should I read?

    RSVP. – Respectfully Yours

    Greg LaLiberte

    Comment by Greg LaLiberte — August 31, 2010 @ 6:56 pm

  4. How do I find the “Jeff Smith” music you played on the podcast ?

    Comment by Greg LaLiberte — August 31, 2010 @ 7:00 pm

  5. Hi Greg, I had to edit a bit of your kind comment otherwise we would get attacked by spam bots and all sorts and also I wasn’t sure that you would want your personal address on the internet, I hope thats ok.
    I am a 43 year old white male as well! I’m not sure I know what a hollow earth/hollowed earth is but since I do work with disasters I believe the world to be full of surprises! Tibetan buddhism follows different sutra’s, the spread of Buddhist teachings over time is a very interesting subject and the appeal and utility of different sutras to lead people to enlightenment is another one, one that I hope to cover in a lecture very soon.
    A Buddhist is someone who practices Buddhism. I don’t think that means they have to be vegetarian or vegan, just aware that the causes / choices we make on a day to day basis will have effects / consequences on how life unfolds for us. I think if we decide to eat something that we have killed then we should eat with respect and dignity and not throw half away as waste. By the way, scientists believe they can record stress from vegetables being pulled from the ground! In which case I think the same respect should apply to vegetables and fruit! I could go on, but its another subject again!
    Should Buddhists give up alcohol? Buddhists are human beings, and some human beings really suffer / cause others to suffer from alcohol and some don’t! There is no rule other than the law of cause and effect / choice and consequence. How do you want to live?
    As to the questions of what you should read, if you mean about Buddhism, then read anything by Daisaku Ikeda. He is my mentor and it is to his writings about the teachings of Nichiren Daishonin that I am truly indebted for everything I have learned about Buddhism. At the moment I am reading a lecture he has written on a writing by Nichiren Daishonin called, The Supremacy of the Law and also Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman.
    Have a great week

    Comment by jason — September 2, 2010 @ 9:09 pm

  6. Probably my favorite episode so far. (and really, all episodes are great.)it has a great lecture on “Letter to the Brothers.” providing insight and background to the historic letter which has become a staple of our SGI study, but in addition provides a succinct mini-history of the SGI and its three presidents, and gives a great definition to the concept of 3 obsticles and 4 devils.
    It is really several studies in one. I listened to it four times, and will probably return to it time and time again in the future.

    Comment by Chilli B — September 2, 2010 @ 9:13 pm

  7. Another incredible and inspiring podcast!! I have read “Letter to the Brothers” numerous times but I feel I really understood it at a completely different level. Also loved both of the experiences. They were wonderful!

    Thank you so much for your great work!

    Comment by Erika — September 2, 2010 @ 9:14 pm

  8. Hello Jason and Karen,
    I am so grateful that you have posted another show. I began listing to your podcasts from the beginning several months ago. This has meant that I had a show available whenever I needed to hear your voices and find some guidance. I have not found any information about meetings that I can attend in my area of East Central Indiana (US), and use the podcasts as my meeting. Sadly, I have caught up and now have to wait for each new podcast. I would say that you have no idea what this has meant to me, but I have a feeling that you and thousands of others actually do. There have been times when I wished I could pick up the phone and call you and ask for guidance. At these times I go back through old shows and find what I need. Keep up the great work, and I want to thank your family and all those involved for such inspiring shows.

    With Gratitiude,
    Chad M. Gullett

    Comment by Chad M. Gullett — September 2, 2010 @ 9:16 pm

  9. I read a book by Ernst Dickhoff who put forth the idea that shambala is at the earths center underground, and he claims it is Tibetan Buddhist theory that the earth has a habitable inner core.

    Comment by Greg LaLiberte — September 3, 2010 @ 2:04 am

  10. Hi Jason and Karen,

    I would just like to say a huge thank you for your time and effort in producing such a constant stream of educational, thought provoking and, most importantly, uplifting podcasts.

    I found you guys by accident, if there is such a thing, a couple of years ago and listen regularly.

    Your shows, and particularly those of The Reluctant Buddhist, come with me wherever I go. They have helped me through some dark times, and made me realise that the problems in life are simply the tests we set ourselves and must overcome.

    Thank you once again, please keep up the marvellous work, it is very much appreciated.

    Love to you both,

    Richard (Poole, Dorset, UK)

    Comment by Richard Blake — September 3, 2010 @ 2:38 pm

  11. Hi Jason
    Read your answer to Greg
    And you did a excellent job by explain to him how Buddhism “think” . Bravo!

    Comment by Maria Teresa — September 4, 2010 @ 2:54 pm

  12. Hi Jason and Karen,
    So glad to see that you’re really back. Your podcast came just in time, because just one month after I got my Gohonzon I had of week of wallowing in negativity and nastiness with a feeling of wanting to put the gohonzon in an envelope and mail it back to the center and not wanting to do musi anymore either.
    Funnily enough, I seemed to have more ‘shoten zenjins’ around me than usual, as signs that I should stay on he path, because I was doing fine.
    I needed to hear your words. You mentioned ‘wisdom’ many times in your podcast, especially using wisdom to overcome negativity. This is pointing me to something I come across twice everyday when I recite the second prayer; “Eko sho muryo”, which means ‘The light of my wisdom is limitless’. I knew that, but this week I needed it to be pointed out to me specifically as a tool for my problems.
    Thanks, once again, for hitting the nail on the head!
    Many blessings from Amsterdam,
    Deborah Carter

    Comment by Deborah Carter — September 5, 2010 @ 11:03 pm

  13. Thanks for another beautiful show. I have started lecturing in a University in Ghana. I guess i need your guidances (and Sensei’s, now more than ever!).

    Comment by Ametefe Frank — September 12, 2010 @ 8:31 am

  14. Hi Jason & Karen,
    Thank you so much for the postcast. They are amazing!!
    Is like to go to an SGI-Activity. Really inspiring. Thanks!!
    I would like to send you my experience to you. In the last 2 years i have change lot of things in my life througt This Buddhism. Winning my depression and starting my new life from zero!! Following my dreams.
    And i would like to share with all of you.
    How can i sent my experience to you?
    I really want to encourage others with the same problem & situation.
    Thanks a lot again.
    Best regards & keep in touch,
    Mickey Jordan, Barcelona

    Comment by Mickey Jordan - Barcelona, Spain — September 23, 2010 @ 12:25 pm

  15. Jason & Karen,

    I really love your buddhist podcast! A great way to study.

    This one specific the really great! Listened to it over 5 times and still impressed by it and shared it with many others too.

    Thanks a lot! 🙂

    Ryanne from Amsterdam (Fuji district)

    Comment by Ryanne — January 5, 2012 @ 6:22 pm

  16. I really like this podcast on Nichiren Daishonin the topics included. But I could do without the mediocre generic pop/rock songs that you always insist playing. I think the show would be so much better without these interruptions. Otherwise love your work. Thanks!

    Comment by Mist — December 9, 2013 @ 11:43 pm

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