Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 46

46. Everything from This to That

One day a follower brought a large fish for an offering. After the fish was offered, Shuji asked Rin Masui to prepare it. Rin looked for a carving knife but could not find one. Then Shuji said, “Orin, is it a carving knife you are looking for? There is a large vegetable knife in the kitchen. Use that to prepare the fish.” There was no carving knife.

Rin thought, “How inconvenient,” and one day asked to have the day off, and returned to Kawachi. As that day happened to be the day of Otaiya at Yao,* she immediately went to Yao and bought a carving knife, a thin fish-slicer, a pair of scissors, and other useful household items. She returned to the Residence and presented them as a gift from her. Shuji and Matsue were so delighted with the presents that Shuji said, “Such nice things! I want to show them to Grandmother.** Come along with us,” he urged. When they met Oyasama, Rin first thanked Her for the day off. Oyasama accepted the presents and said:

“Orin, you have given thought to everything from this to that. Oh, I am grateful. Oyasama was very pleased.”

It is said that Rin, overwhelmed with the graciousness of Oyasama, bowed, pressing her forehead against the tatami-mat and shed tears of gratitude.


* Otaiya at Yao refers to a string of roadside stands which open between the Temple of Yao and the Temple of Kyuhoji on the eleventh and twenty-seventh of each month.

** Oyasama.

Anecdotes of Oyasama, pp. 40–41

Translation of “Sawa’s note

“[Based on] oral account of Rin Masui, [also appearing in] September 1931 issue of Michi no tomo.”

My take

This selection from Anecdotes of Oyasama is an excellent lesson on how to take initiative and supply a church with anything it may need. I remember going to my parent church on one occasion some years ago and when I helped play one of the instruments for the daily service, I found they didn’t have kyofuku robes my size (I am 6 ft. or about 183 cm in height) and that the ones that they did have were missing buttons and one had a broken zipper. My reaction at the time was “What is wrong with this place?” Certainly not the ideal way to react.

Anecdotes 46 demonstrates how to ideally deal with a similar situation. Rin Masui was helping out at the Residence as usual when she is asked by Shuji to prepare a fish but finds that there is no knife on hand specifically made for the task. Rin then asks for a day off and uses it to buy not only a knife specifically to cut fish but a number of other household items. Oyasama understandably commends Rin for her thoughtfulness.

The situation at my parent church was a great opportunity for me to do buy a kyofuku, but I allowed it to slip by. Someone else has since donated one (and I have a good guess of who it might have been).


  • Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. 1976. Anecdotes of Oyasama, the Foundress of Tenrikyo. Tenri: Tenrikyo Church Headquarters.

Further reading

Other Anecdotes selections with Masui Rin: