195. Thank You for Your Trouble (go-kurō-sama)
“Oyasama made no distinction between people and She was a very compassionate person. No matter what kind of person She met, She never showed any sign of discrimination. No matter what kind of person came to the Residence, She considered everyone to be Her child. No matter how great a man came, She said:
‘Thank you for your trouble.’
Even when beggars came, She would say:
‘Thank you for your trouble.’
Her attitude and manner of speaking never changed. She considered them all to be Her loving children. Once a person met Oyasama, no matter what kind of person he was, he would be moved by Oyasama’s parental love and be reformed at once. Perhaps they were moved by Oyasama’s compassion.
For example, even a police officer who came to investigate and a local ruffian had been converted to the faith. After just one visit, many either entered the faith or experienced a change of heart. These are recollections of Naokichi Takai.
Anecdotes of Oyasama, pp. 153–154
Continue reading Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 195
194. Her Favorite Dishes (o-meshi-agari mono)
When She was advanced in age, Oyasama from time to time ate raw sweet potatoes grated with a horseradish grater. Also, She occasionally drank sweet rice wine from a small cup. Her favorite brand was made by the Matsumoto brewery in Senzai. So people in the Residence went with a gourd-shaped flask to buy sweet rice wine for Oyasama.
Her favorites were dishes of rice with assorted vegetables. Among these were rice with sweet potatoes, rice with beans, rice with dried gourd shavings, with matsutake mushrooms, and with pumpkins.
If people came by chance while She was having one of these rice dishes, She would make a rice-ball and offer it to them.
She was also fond of kakinoha zushi, marinated fish and rice wrapped in persimmon leaves which are plucked when they have a pleasant aroma after new buds have sprouted.
Anecdotes of Oyasama, pp. 152–153
Continue reading Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 194
70. Threshing Wheat
During the busy harvest seasons of spring and fall at the Residence, Oyasama used to come out and say:
“I’ll help you.”
There are two kinds of flails, large and small. The larger one has a handle and stick of almost the same length. It is so large and heavy that only a strong person can use it. However, Oyasama in Her advanced age used this kind and did the work of threshing as well as any young person.
It was a hot day in the early summer of 1879 or 1880. Takai, Miyamori and others were threshing, wet with sweat under the blazing sun, when Oyasama came out and joined them with a towel wrapped around Her head. When they saw Her working energetically, it was hard to believe that Oyasama was a woman over eighty years old. They all admired Oyasama for being as full of vitality as any young person.
Anecdotes of Oyasama, pp. 60–61
Continue reading Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 70
Q: Recently I had the opportunity to pass through Tenri City. (It was quite a nice place.) As we drove past the Foundress’ Sanctuary , my teacher—a Zen monk—told me that there is a television in the sanctuary in case Oyasama gets bored. Is this true? More generally, what is believed to go on in the sanctuary, and is it meant to resemble Kukai’s sanctuary at Koyasan?
submitted by Avery M.
A: Thank you for the interesting questions, Avery! Only designated individuals are allowed inside what is called the “Foundress’ Residence” portion of the Sanctuary, so while I haven’t seen this with my own two eyes, because Oyasama is treated as though She is still physically alive there, she allegedly gets the daily paper, she is served cooked meals, her bath plus bedding is prepared every evening, and I have heard she does have a television.
I am not sure how her attendants can tell whether she is “bored” or not or even know what kind of programming she enjoys, but whaddya know?
Continue reading Question no. 5: What goes on in the Foundress’ Sanctuary?
This is an excerpt from the 2006 September Monthly Service Sermon by Honbu-in Toshimi Imamura (All have I done here is post the excerpt here. I have no knowledge of who did the actual translation of this sermon.)
71. “God is Taking the Day Off Today”
When my father was young, he recorded in his notebooks some of the stories narrated to him by Yoshie, the Honseki’s daughter. According to one of those stories, one day when the Honseki visited the Residence as usual after work, he noticed that the altar was empty of offerings such as rice and vegetables. When he commented to Kokan, “There are no offerings on the altar,” Oyasama, who was listening nearby, laughed and answered, “God is taking the day off today.” On a later occasion, he noticed that the altar lantern was not lit. When he commented on this, Oyasama replied with a laugh, “God is taking another day off today.”
Continue reading Anecdotes of the Honseki Izo Iburi 71