Awake After Sleeping


Last month I participated in the 24 hours Ceaseless Nenbutsu relay which I broadcasted through my youtube channel.  My assignment was only one hour but soon after I started chanting, I felt like sleeping. 




Since then my practice of Nenbutsu changed to a battle with strong drowsiness.  At first, I had a pressure that some friends in the world are watching me via internet.  So I tried to stay up to chant "Namu Amida Bu" loudly.  Gradually, however, I felt my hitting Mokugyo(wooden drum) became slower.  Then finally I couldn't resist my sleepiness during chanting Nenbutsu.  I'm not so sure how long I was sleeping but at least I realized I fell asleep!




Immediately I thought "Oh my goodness, I slept!!!"  But it was too late.  I became so ashamed of myself and I woke up.  Interestingly, however, after falling asleep during Nenbutsu, I felt so refreshed and completely woke up.   "What a glorious moment!"  This was the moment I first realized the significance of "sleep" in order to wake up.   At the same time, I regained my energy to continue to do Nenbutsu loudly.  This was the most pleasant Nenbutsu I've ever experienced.  One hour went so quickly and I continued more Nenbutsu.




Once again, nobody can wake up without having some sleep.  Because we sleep, we can wake up.  Buddhism is a religion of "awakening."  I realized sleeping or some negative factors of life were also important.   

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