In Japan, from the ancient days, people celebrated February 4th as Risshun, the beginning of spring. People today give little attention. In our fellowship's history, many important events have taken place on and around this date. Meishu-sama passed on to the spiritual realm on February 10, 1955, on a Thursday, if I remember correctly. I was in Hilo, Hawaii, at the time. I could not believe it. It was such a great shock that I trembled all over. I could not sleep that night and knelt on the floor to pray. After some time my heartbeat gradually calmed down, and I began to feel some inexpressible warmth surrounding me, as if I were enveloped in Light. Then I began to sense Meishu-sama very close to me, and I remembered what he had said about a year before. "When I pass on to the spiritual realm, released from physical limitations, I will be able to channel God's Light more freely, so you will experience still greater Light." I said to myself, it is God's plan that Meishu-sama should pass on to the spiritual realm to continue his work on a larger scale. I began to realize it more and more clearly, and my determination to dedicate myself to Meishu-sama's movement became stronger than ever.
I returned to Honolulu on Saturday, and by the time we held the Sunday service at the Hawaii Center, my conviction was firm that Meishu-sama was still with us in spirit, still helping and guiding us. When I told the congregation about Meishu-sama's passing and its spiritual significance, inwardly I was almost radiant with joy because I felt this must have meant a great turning point for the way of Light. Soon after the service was over, one of the members came up to me almost running, and with eyes full of tears, told me that, while I was telling about Meishu-sama's passing, she had seen Meishu-sama standing behind me in a white robe, radiant in Light. She was shedding tears of joy. Meishu-sama's figure was so clear and so real to her she knew it was not her imagination. She could see that he was indeed living in the spiritual realm and really could be with us at any time. Since then I have heard of similar things happening to quite a few members in the United States, Japan, and elsewhere. Many a time Meishu-sama has appeared at the Valley Center and Los Angeles Center while services are being held and especially while the sacred focal points are being presented to new members.
Meishu-sama told us that Risshun is an important turning point in the year, a time when the increase of Light is accelerated. This is something to be grateful for, for it signifies the further advancement of the new age, but we must also remember that our clouds which hitherto have been dormant will come to the fore to be dissolved, which means we will have to go through accelerated purification. We all have to go through this process, so we have to be prepared for purifications on various levels.
For all who have true faith in God and wish to serve the divine cause, however hard purification may sometimes seem to be, their ultimate good will be served through it. God never forsakes sincere workers of the way of Light. In the Light of truth, we will be able to realize the errors we have been making, and through the experience of purification, we will grow in spiritual awareness.We will experience transformation.We can rise from our old selves to new selves. Accepted with the right attitude, each purification enables us to reach higher levels of spiritual consciousness.
God opens a way for us to experience the divine love and power through prayer and Johrei so the desire to serve may expand within us and we may shift from a self-centered, old-age way of living to the love-for-others way of living of the new age. Let us pray that we grow constantly so we may radiate God's Light and love always and bring more happiness wherever we go.
Excerpt from "Rev. Higuchi on Risshun"
Photo credit by Takashi