Life of Oyasama Chapter 7-2

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The Life of Oyasama
Chapter One
The Shrine of Tsukihi (1837–1838)
Chapter Two
The Early History of Oyasama (1798–1837)
Chapter Three
On the Way
(1838–1852), (1853–1854), (1862–1864)
Chapter Four
The Place for the Service (1864), (1865–1866)
Chapter Five
The Salvation Service (1866–1882)
Chapter Six
The Identification of the Jiba
(1869–1873), (Jan–Nov 1874), (Dec 1874), (1875), (1876–1877)
Chapter Seven
Buds Sprout from Knots
(1878–1880), (1881)
Chapter Eight
Parental Love
(pp. 121–124), (pp. 124–131), (pp. 132–137), (pp. 137–146), (pp. 146–157), (pp. 157–165), (pp. 165–168)
Chapter Nine
The Hardships of Oyasama
(Jan–Sep 1882),
(Oct–Dec 1882),
(Jan–Jun 1883), (Jul–Dec 1883), (1884), (1885), (Jan–Apr 1886),(May–Dec 1886)
Chapter Ten
The Portals Opened
(Jan 1–11, 1887),
(Jan 12–13, 1887),
(Jan 18–Feb 18, 1887)

Life of Oyasama Chapter 7-2 presents a portion of the contents of Chapter Seven of The Life of Oyasama as published by Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. The title of the chapter is "Buds Sprout from Knots." The content below is equivalent to pages 112 to 120 of the print edition.

The “Notes” below are footnotes from the print edition.

Note: The print edition of Chapter Seven has been split into two sections on this wiki due to length of text. The chapter is split as follows:

  1. Life of Oyasama Chapter 7-1 (1878–1880)
  2. Life of Oyasama Chapter 7-2 (1881)


The passing of Shuji

Having been ill since the end of the year, Shuji passed away for rebirth on April 8 of the following year, 1881, at the age of sixty-one. In part twelve of the Ofudesaki, God reveals:

A body that had no disorder anywhere: Tsukihi bent it and caused you much trouble.

The time was thirty-nine years ago. Since then, I have given you worries, troubles, and suffering.

Ofudesaki 12:118–119

God the Parent had put a mark on Shuji's healthy body as a means to begin this path. Thereafter, Shuji underwent extreme hardships and, continually bearing the brunt of opposition and criticism, truly tasted the bitters of life. After Shuji passed away for rebirth, Oyasama stroked him on the forehead and thanked him for many years of hardship, saying:

What a pity! Come back soon.

When Oyasama returned to Her seat, She spoke in place of Shuji:

I have not gone anywhere. My soul is embraced by the Parent. I have simply cast off an old garment.

Then She spoke in place of Kokan and Oharu.

The souls of the instruments of creation remain at the Residence of Origin forever and, being reborn again and again, work for the salvation of all humankind.

Quarrying stone for the Kanrodai

Oyasama clarifies the fundamental truth of the Service of the Kanrodai at the outset of part sixteen of the Ofudesaki and urges the construction of the stone Kanrodai, the center of the Service, from early 1881. On May 5, a search for stone was conducted in the hills around Takimoto Village, and quarrying was begun a few days later with the hinokishin of many followers. On May 14, members of the Meishin and Shinmei fellowships from Osaka joined in the quarrying, which became a lively affair. Thus, the necessary quantity of stone was prepared in this manner. <Link to Anecdotes of Oyasama 82>

The construction of the stone Kanrodai was then begun joyously, dispelling the gloom which had arisen from trying to follow a path conforming to the law. In part sixteen, written about that time, it is taught:

Though today you know nothing at all, look toward the morrow. A great broad path will open.

Ofudesaki 16:33

Here, God strongly encourages the followers, teaching that no matter how many difficulties might lie before them today, a radiant broad path will come into sight even tomorrow if they are illuminated by the parental heart, a light which nothing can obscure. Also at the end of part sixteen:

Now today, any and all things will appear. When the appointed time comes, Tsukihi will come to lead you.

Today, the time has become sufficiently full. There is no knowing when I shall come to lead you forth.

Ofudesaki 16:75–76

Now ponder! From now you must replace your mind. It will not do, not to ponder and resolve!

Ofudesaki 16:79

Indicating that a serious moment will arrive in the near future, God the Parent urges the followers to replace their minds and hastens their resolve.

The knot of June 1881

In a memorandum written by Shinnosuke, there is a reference to an incident that occurred one day in June, before the tears had dried following Shuji's passing away for rebirth. It reads: "In June 1881, six police officers were sent to the Residence. They summoned Matsue to the room with the dais and questioned her. Then they proceeded to Oyasama's living room and asked Her various questions. However, finding nothing unusual, they left after admonishing Her. I had dreamed of this the previous night."

The knot of September 1881

The hardships that occurred in September 1881 resulted from a mistake in reporting the lodgers' names on September 16 and 17, 1881.

At that time, a steam bath and an inn were being operated under a license in Shuji's name, and it was mandatory to report the names of all lodgers to the police. However, being busy at the time due to a sudden increase in the number of worshipers who stayed overnight, they found no time to do so. Shirobei Umetani, who had begun to follow in February, as well as Kyutaro Kishimoto and eleven others, came and stayed on September 16, and Yokichi Hase and five others stayed on the night of the 17th, but these names were not reported. This soon became known to the police, who immediately summoned Matsue and the others in charge. However, as Matsue had gone to Ichinomoto Village, they summoned Ryojiro Yamazawa, who had been managing the household affairs of the Residence as a guardian since Shuji's passing away for rebirth. He was required to write an account of the incident, [1] dated September 18, and was fined seventy-five sen[2] on September 26. Masataro Kohigashi, Matsue's brother, was also required to write an account explaining his delay in reporting that Matsue had been away and was reprimanded for affixing Matsue's legal seal in her place.

The Hardship of October 1881

On October 7 of the same year, Matsue, Masataro Kohigashi, Ryojiro Yamazawa, Chusaku Tsuji, and Gisaburo Nakata were taken to the Tanbaichi Branch Police Station on the grounds that they were gathering and misleading many people. They were ordered to submit written accounts and were fined fifty sen[3] each. Oyasama was also arrested, required to submit an account, and fined fifty sen.

In addition to Oyasama, Matsue, Shinnosuke, Tamae, and Hisa Kajimoto (later Hisa Yamazawa), those who lived at the Residence were Nakata, Tsuji, Takai, and Miyamori. However, Tsuji was mainly there at night and Takai stayed for about twenty days each month. Yamamoto was usually away doing missionary work.

The "knot" of 1881 was the first incident with the authorities in the six years since the hardships of 1875. Oyasama was already eighty-four at the time.

One day that year, Oyasama told Tamae, then a child of five years,

A child is pure and innocent. Dear, pass these out among them,

and had her distribute crests, made from the red clothes She had worn, to those present. Then She added:

Though you receive these from God the Parent, there are some of you who will have to return them, depending on the use of your minds.

For some time, Oyasama had been urging the followers, saying:

Compile a divine record.

Presumably, Oyasama was telling them to record the main points of the story She had been teaching. Notes on the Story of the Creation of this World, compiled in 1881 and written by Ryojiro Yamazawa, was one of these.

The construction of the stone Kanrodai made favorable progress from the spring of 1881, and the first two layers were completed by early autumn. In part seventeen, God explains in detail the truth of the Jiba of Origin and says that the Kanrodai is to be set up at the Jiba of Origin as proof of human creation. If only this stand is completed, no prayer will go unanswered. To encourage people throughout the world to purify their minds before its completion, God urges the sweeping of hearts, telling of the joy of a bright future.

Immediately thereafter, however, an unexpected event occurred. The stonecutter, Shichijiro, suddenly disappeared and the stone construction came to a halt.

On the surface, this incident seems to have happened by mere chance. But when considered in the light of the verses in part nine, which teach that the Kanrodai will be set up upon the spiritual maturity of humankind and the assemblage of the Service performers, it can be said that it was still too early to purify the minds of humankind, still clouded by the smoke of the Buddhist fire rite. Thus, even this unexpected "knot" was in fact an expression of the serious impatience of the parental heart, urging the children, far too slow in their spiritual growth, to attain spiritual maturity rapidly.

In May 1881, Ihachiro Yamada of Kurahashi Village, Yamato Province, began to follow the path, and in September of that year Genjiro Fukaya of Kyoto began to follow.

Around that time, the fellowships came to number more than twenty, including Tengen, Seishin, Sekizen, Shinjitsu, and Shin'yu in Yamato Province; Tentoku, Eizoku, Shin'e, Seishin, Keishin, Kagura, Tenjin (later Shusei), and Heishin in Kawachi Province; Shinjin, Ten'e, Shinmei, and Meishin in Osaka; Shinjitsu, Asahi, and Shinsei in Sakai; and Meisei in Kyoto.

In December of that year, Shirobei Umetani of the Meishin Fellowship of Osaka, after consulting with the Shinjin Fellowship, submitted to the Wako Temple at Amidaike, Osaka, the first application for the authorization of a church. However, he received no response.

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  1. See Appendix, pp. 118–120.
  2. Seventy-five sen is approximately $28 U.S. as of 1993.
  3. Fifty sen is approximately $18 U.S. as of 1993.


Written Statement in Answer to Your Inquiry
Ryojiro Yamazawa
Commoner of Niizumi Village
Yamabe County, Yamato Province
Concerning the fact that Miki Nakayama, the mother-in-law of Matsue Nakayama, a commoner of Mishima Village of Yamabe County of this province, wears red clothing and members of the family worship reciting "Tenrin-O-no-Mikoto," I respectfully answer your questions and follows.
In about May 1879, I suffered from a blockage in my throat, so I tried various remedies to regain my health, but obtained no relief. Then I visited Tenrin-Sha to worship and also take a bath, whereupon I recovered immediately and completely. For this reason, I came to worship once a month until about January 1880. However, as I made a vow during my illness that I would help them in some way, I took charge of their steam bath for fifteen days a month from January of the same year. Meanwhile, in August of that year, when Shuji Nakayama, the husband of Matsue Nakayama was still living, the Tenrin-O Fellowship was established at the house of Shuji Nakayama as a branch of the Jifuku Temple of Kuruno Village of Uchi County of this province. On that occasion, I was appointed manager of the Tenrin Fellowship and was also asked to be the accountant of the fellowship by the director of the Jifuku Temple. I still have the written appointment in my possession. And as Shuji Nakayama was bedridden with a leg ailment, I was entreated by him to be in attendance at his house daily. After Shuji died on April 10 of this year, I was requested by his wife and other relatives to manage all the household affairs.
While I was attendance at the house, the old mother told me that forty-four years ago She had been taken as the Shrine of Tsukihi and that the mind of Tsukihi entered into Her body. She also taught that his world and human beings were all created by Tsukihi, so the human body is a thing which God lends.
The moisture of the eyes comes from Tsuki-sama, or Kunitokotachi-no-Mikoto; warmth comes from Hi-sama, or Omotari-no-Mikoto; skin and joining from Kunisazuchi-no-Mikoto; bones from Tsukiyomi-no-Mikoto; the function of eating and drinking from Kumoyomi-no-Mikoto; and breathing from Kashikone-no-Mikoto. The human body is a thing lent by all these six deities. So there is no such thing as illness in the human body. But as there are dusts in the human mind—namely, covetousness, miserliness, hatred, self-love, grudge-bearing, anger, greed, and arrogance—the Parent, Tsukihi, reproves such misuses and makes them appear as illness. Whereupon, if anyone fifteen years of age or older prays to God and repents those eight misuses of mind, every prayer will be accepted. She taught thus.
Old mother Miki said that the Kanrodai is the proof of the Jiba of Origin, where humankind was created. Because this is humankinds' original home, the Kanrodai, eventually to consist of thirteen layers, is to be set up here. Since May 1881, two layers have been completed. This Kanrodai is made of stone. The bottom stone measures 3 shaku and 2 sun across, and the upper stone measures 1 shaku and 2 sun, and its full height at the time of its completion is to be 8 shaku and 2 sun. We have spoken nothing but the teaching of old mother Miki and have never performed exorcism. In answer to your question, I thus explain the situation as it is with this written statement.
September 18, 1881
Ryojiro Yamazawa

External link to Japanese text of Chapter Seven

第七章 ふしから芽が出る