8. By a Slight Illness
On May 6, 1861, Koto Nishida had a toothache. She left home to visit an Inari temple in Senzoku. Senzoku lies to the north of her house, but she was walking to the east without intending to do so, and happened to meet a friend of about the same age. This friend had married into the Okuda family in Bessho. She asked Koto where she was going, and then told her that if she would pay a visit to Shoyashiki, any illness could be cured. So Koto made a pilgrimage to Shoyashiki at once. She arrived toward evening. Oyasama greeted her:
“Welcome home. I have been waiting for you.”
“I have given you guidance by a slight illness only.”
Then, telling her the divine teachings, Oyasama gave her the sacred powder of roasted grain. By the time Koto got home after listening to the divine teachings, the toothache had completely stopped. She did not pay a visit to Shoyashiki for some days. Then, her eyes began to hurt violently. Immediately, she visited Oyasama, who said to her:
“I have given you guidance through an illness.”
Oyasama taught Koto the divine teachings step by step, and prayed for her. The pain stopped by the time Koto left to go home.
For the following three days Koto visited Shoyashiki to clean the Residence, bringing her lunch with her. That was the beginning of her faith in Tenrikyo. Koto was thirty-two years old that year.
Anecdotes of Oyasama, pp. 4–5