Monthly Archives: July 2017

Quietness Melts Me

Quietness melts me.

Haunting thoughts heats up my chest.

Breathe life to my dreams.

– Jon Riki Karamatsu, Haiku #67, July 29, 2017 –

#haiku #haikupoems #haikupoem #haikupoetry #poems #poem #poetry #writing #creativewriting #author #jonrikikaramatsu

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Filed under Creative Writing, Haiku, Poems, Writing

Death Can Chase Us Down

Death can chase us down.

But we will get the medal.

We did everything.

– Jon Riki Karamatsu, Haiku #66, July 23, 2017 –

#haiku #haikupoem #haikupoems #haikupoetry #poem #poems #poetry #writing #creativewriting #author #jonrikikaramatsu #passion #joy #happiness 

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Why is everything so heavy?

I’m holding on
Why is everything so heavy?
Holding on
So much more than I can carry
I keep dragging around what’s bringing me down
If I just let go, I’d be set free
Holding on
Why is everything so heavy?

“Heavy” by Linkin Park.

#linkinpark #heavy #ripchesterbennington #music #lyrics #song #rock #rockmusic


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Filed under Entertainment, Lyrics, Music, Rock

Together we can reach new heights!

Together we can reach new heights in providing value to our community and world! Mahalo for all you do! Have a great day!

#reachnewheights #teamwork #business #entrepreneurship #publicservice #nonprofit #community #world #honolulu #kona #hawaiianislands #hawaii 

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Filed under Business, Career, Entrepreneurship, Friends, Inspirational, Life Coach, Motivational, Nonprofit, Politics, Positive Living


If I cannot break your fall.
I’ll pick you up right off the ground.
If you felt invisible, I won’t let you feel that now.

“Invisible” by Linkin Park.

#linkinpark #ripchesterbennington #invisible #music #lyrics #song #songs #rock #alternative #rockandroll

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Filed under Concerts, Entertainment, Music, Rock, Song

Sleep and My Awesome Simmons Bed

Sleep is key to our physical and mental health. It provides us the energy to exercise, work, and enjoy the day. Sleep also gives us the energy to overcome challenges. When I bought my place in 2003, I purchased a Simmons plush bed, which has foam and isolated pocket springs that has great back support and isolates movement, allowing me to continue to sleep even with movement on the other side. My bed is so comfortable.

#sleep #sleeping #sleepbenefits #benefits #simmonsbed #simmons #hawaii #mindfulness #gratitude


Filed under Gratitude, Happiness, Life Coach, Mindfulness, Positive Living, Sleep

Fun Places

Go to your fun places. Here’s my fun place to work, Starbucks coffee shop in Waipio, Oahu, Hawaii.

#funplace #starbucks #work #waipio #oahu #hawaii #mindfulness #gratitude 

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Filed under Business, Career, Computer, Goals, Gratitude, Happiness, Inspirational, Laptop, Life Coach, Mindfulness, Motivational, Productivity, Writing


If gratitude is the most powerful practice, mindfulness is the second because it is the fuel that boosts gratitude. 

#mindfulness #gratitude #peace #innerpeace #positiveliving #positivity #positiveenergy #positivevibes #positivequotes #quote #quotes #jonrikikaramatsu #writing #creativewriting

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Filed under Creative Writing, Gratitude, Happiness, Mental Health, Mindfulness, Positive Living, Quotes, Writing

Move to your own beat

Move to your own beat.

Feel the sound, drown out the world.

Attack your passion. 

– Jon Riki Karamatsu, Haiku #65, July 23, 2017 –

#haiku #haikupoem #haikupoems #haikupoetry #poem #poems #poetry #writing #creativewriting #author #jonrikikaramatsu #passion #dreams #dream #goals #goal #joy #happiness #photography #art

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Filed under Creative Writing, Haiku, Poems, Writing

I send you thoughts as you sleep

Tingling sensation.

I send you thoughts as you sleep.

Rising ecstasy.

– Jon Riki Karamatsu, Haiku #64, July 23, 2017 –

#haiku #haikupoem #haikupoems #haikupoetry #poem #poems #poetry #writing #creativewriting #author #jonrikikaramatsu #love #romance #exctasy #passion #joy #happiness

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Filed under Creative Writing, Haiku, Love, Poems, Writing

2017 Jodo Mission of Hawaii’s Obon Services

I attended Jodo Mission of Hawaii’s Obon Services for all of our ancestors on July 23, 2017 with my parents and younger sister Lara. We also prayed to the souls suffering.

The wooden plank with my family name is our Karamatsu family otoba for my grandpa Maurice Karamatsu and grandma Bessie Karamatsu, great grandpa Yutaro Karamatsu and great grandma Shima Karamatsu (immigrated to Hawaii, United States from Yamaguchi, Japan sometime in the 1890s), and ancestors for obon services at Jodo Mission of Hawaii on July 23, 2017.
After the service, there was a nice taiko performance by Dragon Beat, a tenant at Jodo Mission of Hawaii.

#jodomission #jodomissionofhawaii #jodoshu #jodoshuhawaii #obon #obonservices #honolulu #hawaii

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Filed under Events, Family, Gratitude, Peace

Doraku and Mike Epps Comedy Show

Pictured just before getting picked up by my good friend Allen Yadao who I met while we served as Deputy Prosecuting Attorneys, to eat at Doraku in Kaka’ako, Honolulu, Hawaii, followed by the Mike Epps comedy show across the street at Blaisdell Concert Hall on July 22, 2017. 

My good friend Allen Yadao and I at the Mike Epps comedy show at Blaisdell Concert Hall in Honolulu, Hawaii on July 22, 2017. Earlier, we ate at Doraku in Kaka’ako, Honolulu, Hawaii.  Allen and I quickly became friends while we served as Honolulu Deputy Prosecuting Attorneys.

#allenyadao #friend #friends #doraku #restaurant #mikeepps #comedian #comedy #comedyshow #blaisdellconcerthall #kakaako #honolulu #hawaii #gratitude

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Filed under Entertainment, Friends, Gratitude, Live Shows

Chester Bennington of Linkin Park & My Thoughts on Facing Darkness


I was saddened to hear of the passing of Chester Bennington of Linkin Park on July 20, 2017 at the age of 41.  He was also the lead singer for Dead By Sunrise and fronted Stone Temple Pilots from 2013 to 2015.  His voice had a great range for melodic top 40 tracks to the hard screaming sounds of rock and roll that sometimes blended with rap by Mike Shinoda, the other frontman of Linkin Park.


Chester was authentic and open about his life, the struggles of his childhood when his parents became divorced, being sexually abused by an individual older than him, and getting bullied in school.  He let out his frustration and suffering in his art and music.  Much of his struggle resonates in the lyrics of the songs he helped write and through the sound of his voice.  However, Chester also turned to drugs and alcohol to numb his pain.  Even with his rise into a rockstar with amazing bands, he faced depression until he took his life.


As a politician in Hawaii, I worked on the issues of bullying, sex abuse, drugs, and mental health.  I continued with some of this work while a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney and Legislative Liaison at the Department of the Prosecuting Attorney of the City and County of Honolulu.  I left public service after being charged by the police for driving under the influence when I was stopped at a roadblock.  Half the time I served in public service, I felt like I was dealing with power trips of politicians and judges, many with temper tantrums who were unable to put the issues above themselves.  Now, I direct my efforts in helping the community through start-up business ventures, business law, and nonprofit organizations.  If I succeed in building the businesses that I’m passionate about, I want to dedicate my money on causes that I’ve failed to achieve as a politician and government attorney such as building a peace curriculum in our schools to teach our children positive daily practices to reduce bullying, sex assault, verbal abuse and physical violence; and helping orphans of war receive water, food, medicine, clothes, toys, and an education.

The death of Chester by suicide hit me emotionally.  I’ve been listening to Linkin Park since their beginning.  I’m listening to Linkin Park songs as I write this post.  I know the power of the darkness can haunt us, especially when we’re alone.  At night and early morning is when they attack me. When they win, nothing matters – nothing.  I know this.  I live because I’ve created so many goals to work on.  I work hard – so hard that it pushes away my pain – that is until I’m alone, then I have to start all over again.  But I can’t just live by working.  I want to love and be loved.  I want to have fun.  For these reasons, I created a system of practices I created that helps me to keep moving forward through gratitude, peace, and happiness.  If you are facing anxiety and depression, these are the things I do to counter the darkness:

(1) Sleep – For maximum output, 7+ hours of sleep works for me.
(2) Exercise – Run, lifting weights, and swimming are some of the exercise I do that gives me a high and a feeling of confidence that I can achieve anything.
(3) Healthy Diet – Foods that have Vitamin B-complex and Vitamin C helps us against depression and anxiety. L-Theanine in green tea has a calming affect.
(4) Gratitude – I have gratitude for not just the big things, but also the many little things.
(5) Mindfulness – I live in the moment to be aware of the beauty and wonderful things around me. Mindfulness is what energizes our gratitude. The more mindful I am, the higher the level of my gratitude.
(6) Win-Win/Positive Thinking. There are wins in everything we do, even failure and bad incidents.
(7) Goals – I plan and execute my goals by a system that rewards small wins and big wins. It’s the process of the daily practice that gives us a rush of dopamine every time we achieve small wins, and in time, we get that satisfaction from attaining our big wins.
(8) Writing – Blog, journal, social media, fiction, and nonfiction. Writing is so therapeutic, and it feels good to send positive messages to my friends and network.
(9) Positive Relationships – Stay near positive people who will fire you up with good energy, and avoid negative people who drain your energy.
(10) Music – Soothing music is great while working, and when you need a lift, play a lively song and dance.
(11) Read and listen about amazing people – Exposure to people who overcame huge challenges keeps me motivated and thinking extraordinary with a mindset that anything is possible when you consistently work hard, build relationships, and learn.
(12) Go to your happy places – My happy places are beaches in Hawaii for relaxation and coffee shops for work.
(13) Ocean Therapy and Nature – For me, swimming in the ocean does wonders by heightening all my senses and revitalizing my vision for my life.
(14) Sunlight – Vitamin D3 from the sun helps us against anxiety and depression.
(15) Sensory Therapy – I enjoy lemon scented cologne, vanilla and lavender scented candles, hot and cold showers, and massages.
(16) Learn – Right now, I enjoy learning about subjects such as self-development, health, writing, Japanese language and culture, aviation, fuel, Iraq war, and orphans of war.
(17) Meditation – This practice calms my mind, body, and soul.
(18) Travel – Experiences at other locations creates wonderful memories and recharges our mind, body, and soul.
(19) Read Fiction – Experience other lifestyles and locations, feel the beauty of love, and do extraordinary things.
(20) Inspirational Movies and Television Shows

The following song, “Shadow of the Day” by Linkin Park expresses how I feel about the loss of Chester Bennington and the darkness that haunts us all.


Here is “Heavy” by Linkin Park, another song that moves me emotionally.


“Numb” by Linkin Park is a song that resonates with the frustration we feel after working so hard to be who we are, only to be attacked by others who want something, and punished harder by others because of who we’ve become, despite us still being human.


“Sorry For Now” by Linkin Park


“Nobody Can Save Me” by Linkin Park.  On a positive note, near the ending of the song, the lyrics goes:

I wanna fall wide awake now
So tell me it’s alright
Tell me I’m forgiven, tonight
And only I can save me now
I’m holding up a light
Chasing up the darkness inside
And I don’t wanna let you down
But only I can save me!

Been searching somewhere out there
For what’s been missing right here


I want to end this entry with a positive and motivational song by Linkin Park, “Battle Symphony.” Chester will live on through his music, loved ones, and fans. My heart goes out to him and his loved ones.


#depression #anxiety #darkness #linkinpark #chesterbennington #peace #innerpeace #compassion #empathy #gratitude #mindfulness #happiness #sleep #exercise #health #diet #winwin #positivethinking #goals #writing #happyplaces #oceantherapy #nature #sensorytherapy #learn #meditation #travel #movies

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Filed under Exercise, Gratitude, Happiness, Health, Life, Life Coach, Mental Health, Mindfulness, Music, Peace, Positive Living

Always Forgive

My friend and mentor, Hawaii Speaker Emeritus Calvin K.Y. Say and I back in 2010, speaking to a Chinese organization in Honolulu, Hawaii.  “Always forgive,” is what he told me in my early years as a politician when I was being attacked by opposition and negative people. This advice has stayed with me. Keep moving forward with peace!

#peace #innerpeace #forgive #forgiveness #positiveliving #positivity #positiveenergy #politician #quote #quotes #calvinsay #throwbackthursday 

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Filed under Business, Career, Happiness, Life, Life Coach, Mental Health, Politics, Positive Living, Quotes

Fly Towards Your Vision!

Fly towards your vision, fueled by your gratitude for life, and a drive to make a difference in the world!

#vision #gratitude #drive #ambition #tenacity #makeadifference #gulfstream #g650 #jet #quote #quotes #jonrikikaramatsu

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Filed under Business, Career, Entrepreneurship, Happiness, Inspirational, Life, Life Coach, Mental Health, Mindfulness, Motivational, Peace, Positive Living

Exercise Gives Me A High Of Happiness!

Exercise gives me a high of happy chemicals! It reduces my anxiety and stress. Weightlifting with a run on the treadmill at the gym, a run outdoors, a swim in a lagoon or pool, or doing all 3 in one exercise session can boost my energy and focus tremendously. The high I feel from exercise makes me feel like all my dreams are achievable, so it plays a huge role in my career and personal life. Exercise extends our life by preventing cancer, heart attack, stroke, diabetes, depression, and other health risks. Here, I just finished lifting weights and running on the treadmill at 24 Hour Fitness in Mililani, Hawaii on July 17, 2017.

#exercise #weightlifting #running #swimming #strength #cardio #benefits #happiness #anxiety #anxietyrelief #stress #stressrelief #health #24hourfitness #mililani #hawaii

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Filed under Exercise, Happiness, Health, Mental Health, Positive Living

Yuntaku on 7/13/2017 @ Artistry

With my parents at Yuntaku, a fundraiser for the organization, a member of the Hawaii United Okinawan Association at Artistry at Kaka’ako, Honolulu, Hawaii on July 13, 2017. My sister Lara (3rd from the left) was one of the organizers, helping out her friends.They did a dance together onstage. I’m very proud of my sister’s leadership in the community and engineering sector.

#yuntaku #hawaiiunitedokinawanassociation  #fundraiser #event #artistry #kakaako #honolulu #oahu #hawaii

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Filed under Dance, Entertainment, Events, Family, Food, Hawaii

Keep moving fiercely towards your vision! 

Keep moving fiercely towards your vision! 

#vision #goals #goal #move #fiercely #tenacity #drive #determination 

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Filed under Business, Career, Entrepreneurship, Exercise, Family, Friends, Goals, Inspirational, Life, Love, Motivational, Positive Living, Positivity, Productivity

Gratitude is a powerful practice.

In life, we will have happy times, but there will be periods of challenges whether it be deaths of loved ones, illness, financial hardship, difficult relationships, bad work environments, spiteful law suits, violence, and/or prison time or penalties because of false or inaccurate statements. Gratitude is a powerful practice that helps us to always be mindful of all the good that we have in our lives. Through gratitude we can proceed through even our darkest days with the things we can control such as time with positive loved ones, exercise, meditation, writing, learning, passionate projects, helping others, and other positive things that keep us high above the things we can’t control, like negative events and people. Gratitude keeps our energy positive with love, compassion, and empathy that helps us rise over anxiety, sadness, and anger. Positivity spreads when we share it with others. Some of the most beautiful pictures of light occur when it pierces through darkness. Likewise, gratitude makes us appreciate the light or good even among darkness. I took this peaceful picture of sunlight glowing around the dark clouds at Haleiwa beach on July 6, 2017. If you have challenging times, I hope this post helps you to still appreciate and enjoy life. May peace be with you. With Warmest Aloha, Jon

#gratitude #mindfulness #innerpeace #peace #love #compassion #empathy #positivity #positiveliving

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Filed under Gratitude, Inspirational, Life Coach, Love, Mental Health, Mindfulness, Motivational, Peace, Positive Living, Positivity, Writing

Otoba Set-up for Jodo Mission of Hawaii 

I did some volunteer work to put up the otoba for obon for Jodo Mission of Hawaii on July 9, 2018 from 8:00 A.M. to 10:00 A.M. We always pray to our ancestors, but obon is a time when we have special services and bon dance to celebrate our ancestors. The long white cloth is connecting the temple with our otoba or wooden plank with ancestor family names. I will chair the Board of Directors meeting at 11:45 A.M., which is part of my duties as President.

#jodomission #jodomissionofhawaii #jodoshu #jodoshuhawaii #otoba #obon #buddhism #ancestors #lovedones #gratitude #mindfulness #peace

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Filed under Family, Gratitude, Mindfulness, Peace

Every little moment has potential for something great.

Every little moment has potential for something great.

#gratitude #mindfulness #peace #innerpeace #love #positivethinking #positiveliving #relationships #romance #futurelove #ideas #career #quotes #quote #jonrikikaramatsu 

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Filed under Business, Career, Entrepreneurship, Friends, Happiness, Inspirational, Life, Life Coach, Love, Peace, Positive Living, Romance, Success

Claire Wineland – Celebrate life by confronting death

An inspiring article and video clips of Claire Wineland who was born with a terminal illness, and celebrates life by confronting death.

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Filed under Happiness, Inspirational, Life, Life Coach, Mental Health, Mindfulness, Positive Living

A Sparrow Came to Speak to Me

A little brown sparrow came to me on my window sill. It chirped to me comforting words, “Right now the sun is shining and the trees are swaying. I am here and everything seems to be alright. But at night, I will be gone, and they will come for you. Darkness has won here. Close your eyes and go back to your world. She will be waiting for you in the garden by the stream, sitting on the bench under the cherry blossom tree. You know who I am talking about.”

The bird hopped along and faced its back towards me at the edge, ready to launch into flight.

“Wait, why are you telling me this?” I asked.

The sparrow twitched his head backwards at me and chirped, “Because you created us. We want you to see the beauty of what you’ve done for us. The people here don’t know who you really are, but we do. Don’t give up on us just because of the pain you’re feeling here.”

He turned his head back forward and took off into flight, flying high above the coconut trees, becoming smaller and smaller until he became a speck and disappeared.

I wiped away a tear that trickled down my cheek. I knew what he meant, and I understood what I had to do.

#fiction #novel #novels #shortstory #creativewriting #writing #book #books #author #jonrikikaramatsu



Filed under Blog, Books, Creative Writing, Fiction, Journal, Novels, Writing

Have a good 4th of July

We may not always like the outcome, as we are still humans running our government, but we have to believe in the process. Together, we can continue to better our country. Have a good 4th of July and may peace be with you.

#law #justice #rights #equality #dueprocess #unitedstates #usa #america #hawaii #4thofjuly #independenceday #peace 

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Filed under Law, Life, Writing

Sometimes the truth is buried in darkness, but it still lives

Sometimes, the truth is buried in the darkness, but it still lives, though its light is dim, it provides us a way ahead.

– Written with warmest aloha, Jon,7/3/2017

#truth #darkness #quote #quotes #jonrikikaramatsu #writing #writings #creativewriting #poems #poem #poetry #life #challenges #light 

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A sculpture of Achala or the immovable one that I got from our Jodo Shu Hawaii bazaar some years ago that’s on the wall facing my home’s entrance. Achala bears a straight sword in his right hand, and a lariat or noose in his left hand. He uses his sword to cut through ignorance and his noose to reign in those who block the path to enlightenment. I read somewhere that he sacrifices himself from attaining Buddhahood in order to clear the path of enlightenment from evil so we can pursue enlightenment and become Bodhisattvas and ultimately, Buddhas. 

#achala #buddhism #bodhisattvas #bodhisattva #bodhisattvas #buddhas #buddha #buddhas #budhahood #jodoshu #jodomission #jodoshuhawaii #jodomissionofhawaii #enlightenment #love #compassion #mindfulness #peace #waikele #oahu #hawaii #happy #happiness

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Filed under Gratitude, Happiness, Mindfulness, Peace, Positive Living