Tag Archives: Yamazawa Tamezo

Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 133

133. Consider the Future Long (saki o nagaku)

Tamezo Yamazawa heard the following from Oyasama around 1883:

“If you think the future is short, you must hurry. However, if you think the future is long, you need not hurry.

“Haste will not result in being early. Slowness will not result in being late.

Tanno* is true sincerity.”

* Tanno: to rejoice in the perception of God’s love in all life’s experiences.

Anecdotes of Oyasama, p. 109

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Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 120

120. One in One Thousand (Japanese title: Sen ni hitotsu mo)

When Tamezo Yamazawa’s left ear became badly swollen around the spring of 1883, Oyasama told him:

“I say, live in, live in. You are wondering when the time will come. It will soon come. Understand this well.”

Moreover, Oyasama said to him:

“In whatever God has once said, there is no mistake, not even one in one thousand. The path shall become exactly as God has said.”

Tamezo recalled the words given to his father by Oyasama at the time of his father’s illness. As a result, he made a firm resolution to carry on his father’s faith. In the meantime, his mother and elder brother were urging him to settle down. So he asked Oyasama about this and received these words:

“Obey your elder brother as you would God and work for him for three full years. I shall accept it as if you had returned and worked here.”

Anecdotes of Oyasama, p. 99

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Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 96

96. Those Who have an Innen

Oyasama spoke these words to Tamezo Yamazawa in 1881 or 1882:

“God brings people of an innen and protects them. God says ‘Among the people brought here together, those whose hearts ring in harmony are to be united and live in this Residence.'”

Anecdotes of Oyasama, p. 80

Translation of “Sawa’s note”

“Tamezo Yamazawa’s father Ryojiro Yamazawa embraced the faith in Ganji 1 (1864) upon witnessing the miraculous cure of his elder sister Sono, wife of Chushichi Yamanaka. Tamezo married Oyasama’s granddaughter Hisa Kajimoto in April 1887. In 1905, he is appointed as the second minister of Asahi Shikyokai. He served as the chief officiant at the funeral of the first Shinbashira in 1915. He was acting superintendent of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters during the second Shinbashira’s youth and became the first president of the Tenrikyo Young Men’s Association when it was founded in 1918. He passed away on July 20, 1936 at the age of 80.”

Insight from Kazuhiro Hatakama sensei

Kazuhiro Hatakama briefly touches on Anecdotes 96 in the conclusion of his article covering Anecdotes 90. In this article, he suggests there be a third category of innen or causality — causality of (divine) guidance — in addition to the two established categories of the “original causality” and each individual’s “personal causality.” Hatakama sensei writes it is possible to consider the instructions from Anecdotes 90 as applicable to individuals (plus their families) who were guided and drawn to serve and/or live at the Residence and went on to contribute to the nascent period of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. He then suggests this process shows an example of causality of (divine) guidance at work. Regarding Oyasama’s instruction in Anecdotes 96, although it was specifically given to Tamezo Yamazawa, it is similarly applicable to all the people who came to serve at the Residence despite the wide disparity of their respective backgrounds. The instruction “Among the people brought here together, those whose hearts ring in harmony are to be united and live in this Residence” must have been one that sought to have these people who found themselves in the same situation to recognize that it was innen/causality that brought them all together. The following verse also pretty much teaches the same notion,

People come to Me from whatever places. It is because they all are of the original1 causality.

Ofudesaki 4:54

Hatakama sensei discusses a lot more, but I’ll refrain from divulging any more. (Admittedly, his writing has a complexity that makes it a task to summarize accurately with much confidence on my part.)

My take

Given the abysmal spiritual state I happen to be in at the moment, the notion that my heart should ring in harmony with the people around me admittedly rings a little hollow. The longer I’m here, the less I feel I have in common with anyone. Someone get me out of here! (In due time, hopefully….)


  • Hatakama Kazuhiro. 2006. “Tsuzuku ri: 90 ‘Ichi-dai yori ni-dai’.” In Itsuwa-hen ni manabu iki-kata 2. Tenri: Tenri Daigaku Oyasato Kenkyūsho, pp. 31-50.
  • Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. 1976. Anecdotes of Oyasama, the Foundress of Tenrikyo. Tenri: Tenrikyo Church Headquarters.

Further reading

External links 

  • innen (by Kikuo Tanaka)


  1.  A note on the translation of this verse: the original Japanese verse makes no mention of any “original” causality. It is merely “innen” in the Japanese. “It is because they all share causality” may be a translation a little more true to the original.

Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 90

90. Deeper in the Second Generation than in the First

When Tamezo Yamazawa began to serve Oyasama in 1881, Oyasama instructed him in the following manner:

“God says, ‘Showing innen to parents, God waits for children to appear.’ Do you understand? Therefore, virtue is more deeply planted in the second generation than in the first one, and deeper still in the third than in the second. By becoming ever deeper, it will become virtue which lasts forever. It depends on the mind of a man whether it lasts for one generation only, or for two or three generations, or forever. By the continuation of this virtue even a bad innen becomes a good one.”

Anecdotes of Oyasama, p. 76.

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Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 80

80. The Two of You Together

In 1880 or 1881, Tamezo Yamazawa, then twenty-four or twenty-five years old, returned to the Residence with his brother, Ryozo. Oyasama, who sat in the raised room in those days in the building called Place for the Service, said to them:

“Try to pull me down from here, the two of you together. I do not mind falling off,”

and She stretched out Her hands.

They hesitantly held Her hands, one of them Her right hand and the other Her left one. They pulled Her hands as they were told, but Oyasama remained sitting straight not even slightly disturbed. Instead, the harder they pulled, the closer they were drawn to Her. They were astonished and realized that She was really more than human and indeed the Shrine of God the Parent.

Anecdotes of Oyasama, pp. 67–68

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Blogging Anecdotes of Oyasama 69

69. Prefer the Younger Brother

About 1879 or 1880 when he was drawn to the Residence, Yosaburo Miyamori received Oyasama’s words:

“A superfluous man with a pure heart is wanted.”

Yosaburo was the third son among nine children in his family. It did not matter whether he was at home or not. As far as the family was concerned, he was a “superfluous” man. He was by nature very obedient, honest, not greedy, and especially, was said to be a kind of person who could always accept any situation with joy. It is believed that for these reasons he was called a man with a pure heart by Oyasama.

Again, in about 1881, when Tamezo Yamazawa was sitting beside Oyasama, She said:

“Tamezo, you are the younger brother. God is saying, ‘Even more do I desire the younger brother.'”

Anecdotes of Oyasama, p. 60

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The Footsteps of Our Predecessors 72

The following is a translation of Part 72 of the series “Senjin no sokuseki” (Footsteps of Our Predecessors) from the December 2008 (No. 480) issue of Taimō, pp. 34–35. This translation is a preliminary one and thus may require further revision.

Part 72: A Mark on the Parent

In the summer of 1879, Tamezo Yamazawa was studying at a teacher’s school in Sakai to become a primary school instructor. However, the school was temporarily closed due to an outbreak of cholera in the city. Tamezo had no choice but to go back home. He soon got word from the school to resume his studies since the outbreak had settled. Tamezo’s heart was filled with anticipation as he prepared to go back to school, thinking, “I’ll be able to teach after studying just a little more.”

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