Tag Archives: Sazuke bestowal

Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 166

166. A Mark on the Body (mijō ni shirushi o)

In October of 1885, eight-year-old Naramume, daughter of Ujiro Tanioka of Chishawara Village, about four kilometers due east of Jiba, went to pick chestnuts and sprained her ankle when she jumped from a tree. This led to an attack of rheumatism which was so painful that she kept crying for three days and three nights.

She received a doctor’s care, and incantations were made at a nearby place. However, the pain did not ease at all; on the contrary, it became more severe.

Then, the teachings of God the Parent were told to Ujiro by Omitsu Matsuura of the same village. Omitsu instructed Ujiro to offer a sacred light by burning rapeseed oil in a small dish, and to face toward Jiba and pray, “Please stop the pain before this light burns out.” Without a moment’s delay, he offered the sacred light and firmly resolving, “If she is saved, I will follow the path and transmit the path to my future generations,” he prayed fervently. His daughter, who had been crying uncontrollably from the agonizing pain in her arms and legs, instantly received a divine blessing and was healed.

The parents were so happy with this blessing that they decided to pay a visit to thank God. Thus, Ujiro, carrying his daughter Naramume on his back, returned to the Residence for the first time. Ujiro was received by Oyasama through the arrangement of Chusaku Tsuji. Ujiro thanked Her for saving his daughter.

Soon afterward, Ujiro fell ill with tuberculosis and lost so much weight that he was a pitiful sight to see. So he returned to the Residence and was granted an audience with Oyasama. Her words were:

“By putting a mark on your body, I have drawn you here.”

He was instructed to change his clothes and come back again without delay. The next day, when he changed his clothes and returned, Oyasama bestowed on him the truth of the sazuke.

His tuberculosis, which had been thought to be incurable, was soon cured. Deeply moved, Ujiro thereafter walked here and there among the houses in the mountain village to save others. By and by, while Oyasama was still physically present, he left Chishawara Village and moved to the Residence, where he did farm work.

Anecdotes of Oyasama, pp. 133–134

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Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 114

114. You Went Through Much Difficulty (Japanese title: yō kurō-shite kita)

One day, Tokichi Izumita was held up by three highwaymen on the Jusan Pass. At that time the teaching, “A thing lent, a thing borrowed,” which he had often been taught, flashed across his mind. So he obediently took off his coat, kimono, and everything just as he was told. Putting his wallet on top of his clothes, he knelt and bowed respectfully before them. “Please take them all,” he said. When he raised his head, the three highwaymen were gone. They must have felt uneasy because he was too obedient, and they left without taking one single thing.

Izumita then put his clothes back on and continued to Jiba. When he was granted an audience with Oyasama, She said:

“You went through much difficulty. Because you have achieved harmony in the family, I grant you the Sazuke of Ashiki-harai. Receive it.”

This was how Tokichi was granted the sazuke.

Anecdotes of Oyasama, p. 95

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Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 83

83. Many, Many Years

Yosaburo Miyamori received an urgent call from Oyasama while he was working in the rice fields of the Residence. It was so unexpected that he wondered what it was all about. He hurried to Oyasama in his work clothes. Oyasama bestowed the sazuke on him then and there.

“Thank you for having worked these many, many years,”

were the words given to him by Oyasama in appreciation.

Note: It was in May 1881 that Yosaburo Miyamori was granted the sazuke.

Anecdotes of Oyasama, p. 69

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Anecdotes of the Honseki Izo Iburi 54

54. During the Hakobi

As mentioned previously, the Honseki changed all his clothes, down to his undergarments, before the Hakobi (the act of bestowing the truth of the Sazuke and granting sanctions regarding church matters). Among the garments he would wear were:

A black crested formal coat (montsuki) made from habutae silk, a brown or pale yellow kakuobi with a design in the middle, a haori coat decorated with the Iburi family crest in five places, and white tabi (foot size: ten mon or 24 centimeters). The Honseki would not wear a hakama or carry a folding fan with him.1

Continue reading Anecdotes of the Honseki Izo Iburi 54

  1. This account of the Hakobi procedures seems to contradict another account that I posted earlier. But further checking suggests that the Honseki only wore silk during the Hakobi procedures and would only wear cotton on other occasions.

    The implication of his action of changing before the Hakobi suggests that the Honseki was making a clear distinction between his own affairs and the Hakobi, which, in effect, were “God’s affairs” or “business.” As one of the tasks of the Shinbashira at present includes the Hakobi (beginning from the second Shinbashira onward), the present Shinbashira too changes his clothing before bestowing the truth of the Sazuke to prospective Yoboku. The clothing he changes into are more formal than what the Honseki wore; the Shinbashira wears a hakama. In fact, he wears a kimono in a style not unlike what he wears in his New Year’s greeting picture.

    Here is a site (unfortunately, only in Turkish, I believe) that has a nice illustration of how such a male formal attire would like. The same page also has an illustration of how a man would wear a kimono without a hakama ala the Honseki during the Hakobi (with the significant difference being the man in the illustration is not wearing a haori coat like the Honseki did). Unfortunately, I am not quite sure of the significance of the Honseki not wearing a hakama during the Hakobi.

    Actual pictures of the Honseki and Shinbashira in such attire would of course get the point across better, but no dice (at least for now). Will have to do with the above link for now.

The Life of the Honseki Izo Iburi, Part Nine

Izo Becomes the Honseki

In 1887, because followers believed Oyasama would live to a 115 years of age, they did not even have a gravesite ready when She withdrew from physical life. Leading followers gathered to discuss the matter and decided to have Oyasama’s physical remains temporarily interred at Zenpukuji, the Nakayama family’s parish temple, until they could build a cemetery dedicated to Her. Oyasama’s funeral was held on February 23 (lunar 2/1) and it has been said that 50,000 followers gathered for the ceremony.
Continue reading The Life of the Honseki Izo Iburi, Part Nine