We were so excited
to see each other and giggled a lot over the phone, planning all the things
we were going to do when she got here.
Ashlee arrived on Tuesday afternoon
and we all went to the cabin up in the mountains. The weather was great
and in the evening we went for a swim in the pond. We stayed the night.
When we were sleeping, Ashlee seemed restless.
As it was Wednesday, Mom woke
us up at 5:00 am to come down the mountains for Future Division morning
gongyo. After gongyo, Ashlee and I went back to sleep and didn’t
wake up until later. Ashlee complained of an earache and when she spoke
to her Dad, they decided that he would come to Santa Barbara that night,
to pick her up and take her home!
You see, apparently Ashlee
had an earache since arriving to her Dad's a week earlier. Her Father took
Ashlee to the Doctor and the Doctor said he couldn’t see anything wrong.
The Doctor said to give her some aspirin and bring her back if it gets
I was devastated when Ashlee
put down the phone because I realized our time together was going to be
cut short. Mom gave Ashlee some ear drops and pain killers. I was upset
and Mom said to me “all you can do now is go and use the Gohonzon — her
Daddy is concerned and that’s understandable.”
I went and started chanting.
Then I realized, I needed to get Ashlee to chant and do A & C with
me. I was nervous that if I asked her that she would say “no” because of
her own family beliefs.
I asked her anyway. I said
“Ashlee, would you do something for me?”
Ashlee said “Sure, what?” I
explained to her and she agreed!
We sat and chanted and did
A & C. Afterwards we both felt better. Then we realized that her Dad
was coming to pick her up. Ashlee told Mom and me that she didn’t want
to go now and that she felt much better. Mom said, “if you really want
to stay, then call your Father back and quickly, as he may have already
left.” Los Angeles is 100 miles from Santa Barbara!
Well, he was just leaving and
he stopped to get the phone. Ashlee spoke to him. Then Mom spoke to Ashlee’s
Dad and he said “OK, you can stay tonight. Call me tomorrow.”
The next day, we had a great
reunion with school friends and a bunch of us went along State Street for
lunch and shopping. When we got home, Ashlee was much better. Her Dad still
I decided to do the “Future
Division Meeting” on Saturday so that I could introduce Ashlee to our Community
Center and show her about our World Peace movement. I thought we
would gain more fortune and beat this sickness. Ashlee agreed to read a
poem at the meeting from the “Seize the Day” pull-out from the World
Tribune June 16, 2000.
Her earache was getting better.
By Friday evening, her Dad said she could stay as planned.
We were so happy — and had
a great vacation together. I think Ashlee’s earache happened so that she
could learn more about my Buddhist practice and how chanting changes things
so we are able to accomplish our goals. Now, Ashlee chants too!
Thank you very much for allowing
me to share my benefit with you today.