Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-5

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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 9-5 presents a portion of the contents of Chapter Nine from The Life of Oyasama as published by Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. The title of the chapter is "The Hardships of Oyasama."

The content below is equivalent to pages 195–201 of the print edition.

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

  1. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-1 (January–September 1882)
  2. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-2 (October–December 1882)
  3. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-3 (January–June 1883)
  4. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-4 (July–December 1883)
  5. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-5 (1884)
  6. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-6 (1885)
  7. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-7 (January–April 1886)
  8. Life of Oyasama Chapter 9-8 (May–December 1886)



With the advent of the new year, 1884, Oyasama entered Her eighty-seventh year.

The Hardship of March 1884

Police control continued to be as severe as ever from the beginning of the year. On March 23, which was February 26 by the lunar calendar, around midnight, two police officers suddenly came to the Residence accompanied by Chusaku Tsuji. Chusaku had just left the Residence and was on his way home to Toyoda Village. Chusaku had just left the Residence and was on his way home to Toyoda Village. As he was hurrying east on the road north of the woods of the village shrine, he was stopped by the two officers. Because he explained that he had gone to the Residence on business and was just returning, he was brought back to the Residence for questioning.

At that time, Chuzaburo Koda was present, in the room adjoining Oyasama's living room. There were offerings in the room. Further, Koda had been writing a manuscript which he called Koki. The officers drew their sabers and threatened, "Be you the rust on this blade!" The next day, one of the officers returned to arrest Oyasama and Koda, using the offerings and the manuscript as evidence. Oyasama said to the arresting officer:

What have I done wrong?

The officer answered, "You know nothing of it, but your associate is evil and, therefore, I must take you both." Then Oyasama said:

Is that so? Then I shall go after My meal. Hisa, please serve this gentleman, too.

Then, after eating and changing clothes, She left with the police officer with a smile on Her face.

At the branch police station, with the offerings and writings found earlier as evidence, Oyasama was sentenced to twelve days' detention, Koda to ten days', and they were taken to the Nara Prison under escort. Thus, it came to be that Oyasama was to undergo the hardship of imprisonment again, this time from March 24 to April 5. During Her imprisonment, Shinnosuke, Her intermediaries, and other followers did their utmost in delivering things to Oyasama and in managing the Residence in Her absence.

On the morning of Her release, when Oyasama came through the gateway at ten o'clock, the great mass of followers who had come out to greet Her in front of the prison gate clapped their hands and bowed in reverence.

As was Her custom, Oyasama went directly to Yoshizen for a bath and Her midday meal, after which She received Her followers and treated them to sake and food. Then She started out for the Residence in Chobei Murata's rickshaw. The rickshaws following in procession, carrying those who came to accompany Oyasama home, numbered in the hundreds. At every point on Her route, people were massed at the roadsides to greet Her. In the vicinity of Sarusawa Pond especially, many people were massed; they clapped their hands and bowed in concert as She passed.

The police who had been dispatched to control the crowd, dashed about with drawn sabers, warning the crowds that they were not allowed to pay obeisance to a human being as if she were a god. But their efforts were in vain, for as soon as the officers moved away, the people resumed their clapping and bowing, muttering among themselves that whoever had been saved by Oyasama from a hopeless illness could not help but worship Her, even in the face of imprisonment. <See also Anecdotes of Oyasama 153>

Oyasama arrived home without incident at two o'clock in the afternoon.

Three months of consecutive Hardship

In each of the three months that followed, April, May, and June, Oyasama was taken by the police without charge and held for three days surrounding the Service day, the 25th, the 26th, and the 27th of the month (lunar calendar), after which She was released, without having been interrogated, and returned home. From this, we can surmise clearly how keenly the nerves of the police were put on edge by the increase of worshipers, daily and monthly, and by the spread of the teachings of God the Parent which could not be stopped.

The Hardship of August 1884

On August 18, an officer came on routine patrol and, while searching through a desk drawer, found an Amulet. Using it to make a charge, he arrested Oyasama and took Her to the Tanbaichi Branch Police Station. Oyasama was sentenced to twelve days' detention and was taken to the Nara Prison. She entered the prison at about three o'clock in the afternoon. Thus Oyasama, at the advanced age of eighty-seven, underwent the hardship of imprisonment again, this time from the 18th to the 30th of August, in a cramped and filthy cell, when the heat of summer was at its height.

It was not the first time She underwent such hardships and just as She had often said,

From a knot, buds will sprout,

each time Oyasama was imprisoned, the number of people who came out to greet Her greatly increased.

On the days of Her release during this period, several hundred rickshaws would be out to greet Her. It is said that people came from all over the nation and that their number was in the tens of thousands. But when the gate of the Residence was approached, officers were on guard and would not let the others take even a step inside. And so the followers had to be content to accompany Oyasama to the gate and watch Her receding figure wistfully. Then, paying their respects toward the Jiba for the Kanrodai from outside the gate, they would disperse to return to their homes, some to nearby villages, others to distant provinces, each filled with deep emotion.

In February of that year, Shobei Masuno, originally of Choshu, presently of Kobe, began to follow the path.

Many followers had been thinking for some time that the hardships of imprisonment befell the aged Oyasama only because the church had not been sanctioned. During the past two or three years in particular, the thoughtless acts of followers, who did not know east from west, had all resulted in troubles for Oyasama. To let this situation continue could not be justified. A petition for church sanction had to be made. Thus, a firm resolve to take action arose among the followers.

On April 14, Risaburo Yamamoto and Gisaburo Nakata left the Residence for Kyokoji Village to attend a meeting on this matter. On the 18th, another meeting took place at Sahei Nishida's house in Osaka. In attendance were Shinnosuke, Yamamoto, Nakata, Matsumura, and Umetani, from the Residence, and members of the Meisei Fellowship from Kyoto. Since they were unable to reach an agreement on the points of discussion, it was decided that the members from the Residence would return and make an inquiry of Oyasama first and then discuss Her answer among themselves before making a decision on the procedure.

During that period, the Meisei Fellowship was spreading the teachings as moral philosophy and thus escaped persecution. Following their example, a petition was submitted on May 9, 1884, to establish an organization under the name "Tenrin-O-Sha: Institute for the Study of Practical Ethics," with Umetani as its head. The reply was issued on May 17: "This office has no authority to grant such a request; therefore, the petition is denied (however, we have no objection as to your purpose)." And so an office of Tenrin-O-Sha was opened in the Junkei section of Osaka.

At about the same time, mainly by the efforts of the followers of Chapter One and Chapter Two of the Ten'e Fellowship, another institute for the study of practical ethics was established in the Kitasumiya section of Osaka, its representatives being Miyoshi Takeuchi and Seizo Morita. In September, Takeuchi planned to broaden the scope of the organization and to re-establish it under the name "Tenrin Church of Japan." He proposed the plan first to the Ten'e and Shinjin fellowships and then to other fellowships in Osaka and even to more distant fellowships in Hyogo, Totomi, Kyoto, and Shikoku.

In this way, as the Path extended, the oppression grew more severe, and as the oppression grew severe, so grew the impatience of the followers to obtain legal sanction for the church, until finally, a sign reading "Church Establishment Office" was put up at Chobei Murata's house, which had become a regular stopover for the followers.

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External link to Japanese text of Chapter Nine

第九章 御苦労