Diary on a Trip to Ise – Part 3

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I met with Mr.H living in Ise, and we decided to go into the woods as far as the source of Isuzu river (五十鈴川)because visiting common places would be boring. On the way, I found a small local shrine near Naiku (内宮)called Uji shrine(宇治神社). Its deity is called “god of foot” and I hear some famous marathon runner visits this shrine to pray.

  • source  源
  • shrine 神社
  • on the way 途中で
  • pray 祈願する

When passing the shrine by car, I perceived strong spiritual energy of a fox spirit. Unfortunately, a lot of negative energy of human greed was accumulated there and its original function was hidden. According to Mr.H, the shrine had existed before Niku was founded and it’s the center of the indigenous faith. Some people suspect it used to be the true Ise Grand Shrine. Because of my Kenzokushin’s order, I decided to visit the shrine again on the way back.

  • perceive 近くする
  • unfortunately 残念なことに
  • greed 欲望
  • accumulate 蓄積させる
  • indigenous 土着の

The forest road along Isuzu river was very narrow and dangerous. It was within the holy precincts of Ise Grand Shrine and general people other than inhabitants were prohibited from entering it. The road was so narrow that two cars couldn’t pass each other. On the left side of the road was the precipice of the river. I drove carefully with a truck for forestry or a local person’s car often coming from the opposite direction.

  • narrow 狭い
  • precincts 境内
  • other than 以外の
  • prohibit 禁止する
  • precipice 断崖

Historically speaking, the whole basin of Isuzu river belonged to Ise Grand Shrine, but parts of the area were registered by private citizens after the World War Ⅱ under the direction of GHQ, General Headquarters of the Allied Forces.

  • historically speaking 歴史的に言えば
  • basin 流域
  • register 登録する
  • direction 指示

Going up the river a little, I found the river suddenly narrowed. I was very surprised to see a lot of megalithic groups near or in the river. There were some gigantic stones as large as a house. Such a scenery is peculiar to Ise, I thought.

  • narrow 狭くなる
  • suddenly 突然
  • megalithic group 巨石群
  • peculiar 特有の

Ancient gigantic stones called Iwakura(磐座) are where God descends on. They function as memory devices for spiritual energy of Holy Spirit. The larger a stone, the more spiritual energy it can amass.

  • ancient 古代の
  • descend 降臨する
  • device 装置
  • amass 溜め込む

I felt that this geological formation where a lot of gigantic stones lie has something to do with the reason why Amaterasu-oho-mi-kami(天照太御神) chose Ise as the sacred place of God. I suppose that there are a number of gigantic stones as large as a house deep under the ground of Naiku and Geku(外宮)of Ise Grand Shrine.

  • geological formation 地層
  • have something to do with A Aと何か関係がある
  • sacred 神聖な
  • suppose 仮定する

After looking at the megalithic groups along the river, I visited Uji shrine. This shrine is outside the jurisdiction of Ise Grand Shrine. There was a signboard in front of the main building, on which the names of deities and famous historical people were written. This way of spelling their names is wrong, I thought.

  • jurisdiction 管轄
  • signboard 掲示板
  • building 建物

Looking at a small mountain in front of the main building casually, I felt strong holy energy. The mountain itself must’ve been a super gigantic stone. Then I got a vision that ancient people are performing rituals regarding this gigantic stone as Iwakura. I thought the rumor that this shrine might be the origin of Naiku is not altogether unreasonable. After this, I headed for a much more dangerous spot.

To be continued.

  • casually 何気なく
  • ritual 儀式
  • rumor 噂
  • not altogether 完全に〜という訳ではない
  • head for A Aに向かう

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I AM GRATEFUL FOR BEING KEPT ALIVE

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Diary on a Trip to Ise – Part 2

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After eating Ise-udon, I started walking to the Ise Station, when I found a shrine next the one in front of the restaurant. The same Inari-shin(稲荷) as that of Geku was enshrined there. I thought “I knew it.” The faith of Inari-shin had spread all over Ise.

  • enshrine 祀る
  • faith 信仰
  • spread  広がる

I got into my car I had parked at a coin-operated parking and headed for Yamato-hime-miya(倭姫宮). It was near the town and a good, quiet shrine with a long approach surrounded by the deep forest.

  • coin-operated parking コインパーキング
  • head for A Aに向かう
  • approach 参道
  • surround 囲む

I feel that Yamato-hime, an Imperial princess and the originator of a shinto priest, was a lady whose face was round with the forehead bulging a little bit. Her face shows that she was a strong-willed and hot-tempered woman. Such a  woman is most suitable for divine possession. Though she may not have been happy as a woman, she was loved by Amaterasu-oho-mi-kami(天照太御神).

  • Imperial 皇室の
  • originator 始祖
  • round 丸い
  • forehead 額
  • divine 神の

Then I visited Tsukiyomi-no-miya(月讀宮). I didn’t expect for anything special there, but it was a good shrine, too. There were four buildings side by side in the precinct. Tsukiyomi-no-mikoto(月讀尊) was enshrined in the two buildings each, and Izanagi-no-mikoto and Izanami-no-mikoto were enshrined in the other two buildings.

  • expect 期待する
  • side by side 並んで
  • precinct 境内
  • each それぞれ

As soon as I prayed in front the building of Tsukiyomi-no-mikoto, I unexpectedly felt the energy of Susanoo, which is an important hint as to the mystery of the true identity of Tsukiyomi-no-mikoto. If the four buildings represented that Susanoo, who strayed from his parents according to Kojiki, Japan’s oldest historical record, and his parents, the meaning of three deities being enshrined together would be more clear.

  • as soon as S+V SがVするとすぐに
  • unexpectedly 意外なことに
  • as to A Aに関する
  • true identity 正体
  • represent 表す

Tsukiyomi-no-miya is near Naiku(内宮), so it looks like Amaterasu-oho-mi-kami is watching over by her brother and parents. Though the description about Tsukiyomi-no-mikoto disappears abruptly in Japanese myths, I believe the name Tsukuyomi-no-mikoto is an alternate name of Susanoo in Yomi-no-kuni, the nether world.

  • watch over A  Aを見守る
  • abruptly 唐突に
  • myth 神話
  • alternate 別の
  • nether world 黄泉の国

Lastly, I drove to Mt. Asama on the highway Ise-Shima Skyline, reaching it just in time for its opening hours. I climbed to the top of the mountain because it was an important point for sun worship. It being evening then, there was something mysterious, or an aura of the nether world, about the temple at the top.

  • in time  間に合って
  • sun worship 太陽崇拝
  • aura オーラ

Then I left there for the observation platform. There was a footbath there and around it I found some debris of Iwakura, a rock where divine energy falls down. I was immersed in my feelings for a while, thinking about Mt.Hakusan.

  • observation platform 展望台
  • debri 残骸
  • be immerced in A Aに耽る

I drove down to the town for a business meeting and the first night of my business trip to Ise was over. I was to go out with the local man in quest of Ise the next day. It was something of an adventure.

To be continued.

  • stray off 
  • quest 探索
  • something of a A ちょっとしたA
  • adventure 冒険

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I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

I AM GRATEFUL FOR BEING KEPT ALIVE

Diary on a Trip to Ise – Part 1

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Late in March, I was told by a client company to go on a business trip to Mie prefecture. It was a three-day trip beginning from April 8. The next morning, while I was performing a shinto ritual, my Kenzoku-shin informed me that this business trip would be very important, and ordered that I should bring all the kami-fuda(神札), a kind of talisman issued by shinto shrines, in my house with me.

  • client  顧客
  • prefecture 県
  • ritual 儀式
  • inform 知らせる
  • issue 発行する

Luckily, I happened to have nothing to do on April 9, so a local person, who lived in Ise and was related to the client company, offered to be a guide to show me around great spots in the nature of Ise that only local people knew.

  • happen to~  たまたま〜する
  • show A around B AにBを案内する

On the first day, April 8, I left my house before dawn and arrived at the company in Mie prefecture around 9:00. I finished almost all the work by noon, so I headed for Geku(外宮) of Ise Grand Shrine(伊勢神宮).

  • dawn 夜明け
  • almost ほとんど
  • head for A Aに向かう

Getting to the main entrance of Geku, I was surprised to see a lot of trucks and heavy machines in the precincts. They were for Shikinen-sengu ceremony(式年遷宮), where the buildings in Ise Grand Shrine are all rebuilt every twenty years. The water in front of the main building was being drained. I went to the front of the main building to pray, with heavy machines making a lot of noise.  Unusually, I didn’t feel anything special while praying. I just dedicated my gratitude to God for all people, including me, being kept alive.

  • heavy machine 重機
  • precinct 境内
  • rebuild 改築する
  • drain 排水する
  • pray 祈る
  • gratitude 感謝の気持ち

Then I went to another building called Taka-no-miya(多賀宮)in Geku, where I perceived the same symbol of Polaris with strange color that I felt every time I go to the main building. I wondered if the deity moved there because of the construction. The local person I met the next day told me that the name Taka-no-miya is derived from the fact that it was at a higher place than the main building. (“Taka” means “high” in Japanese)

  • perceive 知覚する
  • Polaris  北極星
  • construction 工事
  • be derived 由来する

After visiting Geku, I walked to Tsukiyomi-no-miya(月夜見宮). There was an elementary school on the way. It was break time of the school, so I heard a joyful, energetic voice of the children playing on the schoolyard.

  • elementary school 小学校
  • on the way 途中で
  • schoolyard 校庭

Hardly had I reached Tsukiyomi-no-miya when I perceived figurines in the shape of a fox and an altar, which were in front of a hole of a big tree in the left side of the main building, emitting spiritual magnetism. I had an interest in it. The local person said to me “Neighbors must’ve put those things without permission. Jingu side seems to be overlooking it in deference to the faith they have.” The figurines and altar, I felt, were not put for such a simple reason. The people in the neighborhood have had an  indigenous faith so firmly since a long time ago that Jingu side cannot help but admit it.

  • figurine 像
  • altar 祭壇
  • emit 放出する
  • magnetsim 磁気
  • permission 許可
  • overlook 大目に見る
  • indigenous 土着の

Having visited Tsukiyomi-no-miya, I felt like eating Ise-udon, so I went to a famous restaurant near Uji-Yamada station. The Ise-udon served there was much more delicious than that in other restaurants for tourists and it was quite reasonable in price and amount. A lot of local people were coming into the restaurant one after another. The restaurant is a good restaurant loved by the local people, I thought.

To be continued.

  • feel like ~ing 〜したい気がする
  • one after  another 次から次へと
  • to be continued 続く

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Enjoying Brown Rice in Soup

My working hours has changed since the beginning of this year, so I eat lunch at home and work at night, adapting myself to overseas business. There being a lot of brown rice I bought last fall, I heat it in soup stock and eat it every day. It’s really delicious.

  • adapt  適応させる
  • overseas 海外の
  • brown rice 玄米
  • soup stock 出汁
  • tasty 美味しい

I put a bowl of brown rice, a little sea salt, soup stock made from soy sauce, root tangle and water into a pan and heat it. When it boils, I stop heating. It takes only ten minutes as a whole. If you heat it a little longer, the brown rice becomes softer, but you’ll be hungry soon after eating it. I usually eat dinner my wife cooks early in the evening.

  • soy sauce 醤油
  • root tangle 根昆布
  • boil 沸騰する
  • as a whole 全体として

When you pour it from the pan into a large bowl, the bowl is filled with the soup to the edge with the brown rice sinking to its bottom. Cooling it, I eat it slowly. It’s like I eat a hot-pot or noodle soup. Though I eat it every day, I’m not fed up with it because the taste is a little bit different each time due to the amount of salt and soup stock I put into it. If you add seaweed or dried squid to it, the taste changes. It would be interesting to make its taste weaker, too.

  • fill  満たす
  • edge 端
  • sink 沈む
  • hot-pot 鍋
  • be fed up うんざりする
  • each time 毎回

I’m going to change the kind of salt and soup stock I put into it.  I eat out several times a month, but no other food is better than the brown rice in soup I cook. I can feel power in eating it. Its cost is only 50 yen, including the price of seasoning.

  • several いくつかの
  • cost 費用
  • including 〜を含めて
  • seasoning 調味料

With the economic situations in Japan getting worse for the last six months, I’m grateful to my Kenzoku-shin(眷属神)for the suggestion that I should eat brown rice. Brown rice is a really good economical meal and leads to good evacuation and health. And above all, eating it gives me a strange sense of security. The temperature difference being extreme these days, I hope for a good yield of brown rice in fall.

  • economic 経済の
  • grateful 感謝して
  • suggestion 示唆
  • evacuation 便通
  • above all 何にも増して
  • sense of security 安心感
  • temperature 気温

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I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

I AM GRATEFUL FOR BEING KEPT ALIVE

Abdominal Breathing is a Key to Health

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Life habits are very important for improving your health, life span, destiny and spirituality. What’s more important than food is abdominal breathing, breathing out and in from the nose with the belly moving up and down.

  • habit  習慣
  • improve 改善する
  • destiny 運命
  • breathe 呼吸する

You have to do this not consciously but unconsciously and naturally in such a way that your belly moves up and down. It doesn’t take so long to get used to it. Once you’ve acquired this way of breathing, you can do it unconsciously in your daily life. Those who breathe like this are full of energy and healthy, both physically and mentally.

  • get used to A Aに慣れる
  • acquire 獲得する
  • full いっぱいで
  • mentally 精神的に

Respiration of people who are suffering and worrying is shallow. Their bellies don’t move very much. Because they lack in oxygen, their mouthes open naturally, so that they take in viruses and dust in the air, their immunity go down and they’ll end up becoming sickly.

  • respiration 呼吸
  • shallow 浅い
  • lack 欠く
  • immunity 免疫
  • sickly 病気がちな

Abdominal breathing fills you with vigor, makes you positive in making a choice in life and helps you achieve your goal. This is how your life changes. Breathing deeply leads you to Inner God, too. Mouth breathing, on the other hand, makes you take in spiritual dirt looking like smoke, which is composed of evil, rough spiritual particles and easily intrudes into your body. Once it gets into your physical body, it’s difficult to get it out.

  • vigor 活量
  • achieve 達成する
  • on the other hand 一方
  • compose  構成する
  • particle 粒子
  • intrude 侵入する

The hairs of the nostrils prevent spiritually evil things from entering your body. So you had better not cut them too short. The hairs of your head or body have also the same kind of function as that of the nose hair.

  • prevent 妨げる
  • had better not~ 〜しない方が良い
  • function 機能

It is said that baldness is related to hormone, heredity or illness, but why does hormone secretion affect baldness? The main cause of baldness, I suppose, is worrying too much. As long as your spiritual line is clogged, you are apt to attach your mind to worldly things, developing the disposition to worry about anything. Worrying disrupts your respiration and affects your hormone.

  • baldness 禿げ
  • related 関係している
  • heredity 遺伝
  • affect 影響する
  • clogged 詰まった
  • be apt to~ 〜しがちである
  • disposition 性向

Because hair catches spiritual magnetism easily, the physical bodies of people who are always worrying about something seem to drop their hairs as a kind of defense reaction, in order to prevent evil spirits from possessing them. In this sense, you may grow your hair by making efforts not to worry too much and holding memorial services for your ancestral spirits, which cleanse your spiritual line as a result.

  • magnetism 磁気
  • defense  防御
  • possess  憑依する
  • cleanse 綺麗にする
  • as a result 結果的に

Buddhist monks shave their heads to prevent wondering spirits from attaching themselves to monks’ hair during meditation. I feel that, a long, long time ago, Buddhist monks with hair often lost their minds during meditation. So they tried shaving their heads. As a result, such insane monks decreased in number.

  • meditation  瞑想
  • try ~ing 試しに〜してみる
  • insane 気が狂う
  • decrease 減る

Ascetic monks in India wash nasal cavities, passing a string from the mouth to the nose, for the secret of meditation is nasal respiration. It’s important to take care of your nasal cavity. When you breathe through the nose, try to imagine that clean air is coming into your body through the nasal cavity and reaches the belly. Abdominal breathing is very effective in the prevention of influenza, too.

  • ascetic monk 修行僧
  • string 紐
  • effective 効果的な
  • prevention 防止

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I AM GRATEFUL FOR BEING KEPT ALIVE

Tepid Pure Water and Sea Salt

 

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About 30 years ago, a famous hospital for curing intractable diseases was introduced in a news magazine. At the hospital, Dr. Ichiro Miki, former professor at the University of Osaka, cured a lot of patients suffering from intractable diseases other hospitals gave up curing. “His method is unusual in the medical society,” the news magazine said.

  • intractable  治りにくい
  • former 以前の
  • suffer 苦しむ
  • unusual 普通でない

His method of treatment is drinking five litters of pure distilled water with a little sea salt in it each day. If a patient can’t drink this amount of water, the patient is sent to another hospital. His patients have to drink such a large amount of pure water every day under the instruction of doctors.

  • treatment 治療
  • distilled 蒸留した
  • each day 毎日
  • instruction 支持

Though drinking too much water can do harm to the kidney and circulatory organ or lead to water intoxication, Dr. Miki’s method was based on the following beliefs:

* Pure water, or distilled water, doesn’t cause water intoxication, while drinking too much tea, coffee or juice causes a disease because of the physical burden in decomposing the ingredients.

* When a physical body is put in the same environment as a womb of a mother, any disease can be cured. Amniotic fluid has the same salt concentration as sea water of the ancient times.

  • do harm 害になる
  • kidney 肝臓
  • intoxication 中毒
  • burden  負担
  • decompose 分解する
  • womb 子宮
  • amniotic fluid 羊水

He had his patients drink a large amount of distilled water and take sea salt in the appropriate amount together with appropriate medicine and nutrition. Reading this article as a student, I felt the doctor to be very important person and his method impressed me a lot.

  • appropriate 適切な
  • nutrition 栄養
  • impress 感銘を与える

From a spiritual point of view, I perceive hat a person who doesn’t drink much water is likely to have cancer. Such person’s cells seem to congeal because of lack of water and his/her face looks dark red.

  • be likely to~ 〜しそうだ
  • congeal  凝結する
  • lack 欠如

By the way, according to a recent news report, swine influenza is rampant in many countries. When the facade of the administrative building of WHO was shown on television for a moment, I saw the emblem of WHO, a snake twisting around a sword, which I had mixed feelings about.

  • recent 最近の
  • swine 豚
  • rampant 蔓延って
  • facade 正面玄関
  • emblem 紋章

Anyway, this virus will be more and more powerful as it infects one person after another, adding to its lethality. It is said to have arisen from Mexico, but when it spreads to the world, Mexico and the South America might be the safest places in the world. Even if the present confused situation returns to normal, a novel, evolved influenza will be a big problem.

  • infect 感染する
  • lethality 致死性
  • arise 生じる
  • novel 新しい

According to a divine revelation,

* Eat a well-balanced diet.

* Drink more than one litter of tepid water with a little sea salt in it in a day. Drink 250 ml of it at a time.

  • divine 神聖な
  • revelation 御告げ
  • well-balanced バランスのとれた
  • at a time 一度に

What’s more important,

* Hold a memorial service for your ancestral spirits every day with the use of three incense sticks.

* Recall gratitude toward Inner God for your daily life.

  • incense stick 線香
  • recall 想起する
  • gratitude 感謝の気持ち

If you put these into practice, you’ll have nothing to worry about. I’m not worried about swine influenza. As the number of people who practice these increases, this kind of problem will gradually come to an end. It’s important to improve immunity physically and mentally.

  • put A into practice Aを実行する
  • increase 増える
  • come to an end 終息する
  • improve 改善する
  • immunity 免疫

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I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I  Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

I AM GRATEFUL FOR BEING KEPT ALIVE

True Intention of Nichiren – PART 3

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Showing the Great Hokke Mandala with “Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami” written large in the center, Nichiren said to the two leading disciples that, though he respected Shaka in India, he respected Japan much more, and that he prayed to God at Geku(外宮) of Ise Grand Shrine(伊勢神宮) before founding his sect for with the hope that he wanted to lead all the people to Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami (天照太御神)through the teachings of the Lotus Sutra. Then he added that he was going to begin to teach people the faith in Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami, so he wanted them to cooperate with his plan lest his followers should be confused.

  • disciple 弟子
  • respect 尊敬する
  • cooperate 協力する
  • lest S+V SがVするといけないから

They were very much shocked to hear this. They complained by saying how much efforts they made to propagate his teachings through hardships in the face of oppression by the government. It was their only hope that the Lotus Sutra is the best of all the Buddhist scriptures. They got angry, and said “You don’t understand this. Our organization has become big in exchange for many lives of your disciples.”

  • complain 不平を言う
  • effort 努力
  • propagate 広める
  • oppression 弾圧
  • exchange 交換

The amount of money his followers donated was already huge at that time. The disciples agreed that they couldn’t approve of Nichiren’s plan ever which would ruin his teachings and organization and that they had to prevent his plan by all means. I feel that they kept mixing a small amount of poison into Nichiren’s meal over a long period of time.

  • donate 寄付する
  • approve 是認する
  • prevent 妨げる
  • by all means なんとしても
  • meal 食事

Though Nichiren knew what they were doing, he had the meals without saying anything and his body became weak gradually. Why? Because he felt sorry for many disciples who were killed because of the faith in him. Nichiren was the founder of a big religious organization, but he was very kind person as well who never clung to his position or life, always caring about the nation and his disciples.

  • gradually  徐々に
  • sorry すまなくて
  • cling 執着する
  • nation 国家

Nichiren entrusted with them three Great Hokke Mandalas and a document on the faith in Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami. But, they burnt them all after he passed away. The organization was reorganized by them and developed with them being the leaders. But later, they, with the secret in mind, broke with each other and split the organization, founding their own sects each.

  • entrust 預ける
  • document 文書
  • break 仲違いする
  • each それぞれ

Out of fear of having killed Nichiren to cover up his true intention, they became abnormally afraid of visiting Shinto shrines and prohibited their believers from visiting any shrines. A holy spirit of mine have told me their names, but I won’t tell you here. The karma of this incident has existed to this day.

  • fear 恐怖
  • true intention 本意
  • abnormally 異常に
  • prohibit 禁じる
  • incident 出来事

Nichiren aspired after the Great Sun God, or Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami, beyond the Lotus Sutra. I hope that all religious organizations or groups that believe in Nichiren consider the facts that he visited Geku of Ise Grand Shrine for as many as 100 days before founding his sect and that the name of Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami is written in any Hokke Mandala. And I want them to know Nichiren’s true intention.

  • aspire after A Aを目指す
  • consider  よく考える
  • as many as A Aもの

This is an imaginary story in my brain. I’ll dedicate this story to Nichiren, the true patriot who lived through his turbulent life in this world.

  • imaginary 想像上の
  • dedicate 献上する
  • patriot 愛国者
  • turbulent 激動の

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I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

I AM GRATEFUL FOR BEING KEPT ALIVE