As followers of Meishu-sama, there is one thing that we cannot and should not deny. That is, Meishu-sama is alive within each one of us.
You may want to say, It’s not that big a deal. Everyone knows that. I believe and everyone believes that Meishu-sama is still alive within us, and that’s why we can minister Johrei to someone or offer our prayers to him in our hearts. Too simple. We all know that.
Well, do you really know how to live your life of faith with the belief that Meishu-sama is alive within each one of you?
To start with, if you are going to say that Meishu-sama is of course still alive, it would mean that he is breathing at this moment, right? He is breathing out and breathing in and breathing out again, right?
Can anybody deny this? Can anybody deny that, at this very moment, Meishu-sama is breathing? I don’t think you can. I don’t think anybody can deny that Meishu-sama is breathing at this very moment.
And if you believe that Meishu-sama is alive within you, it would mean that he is breathing within you—isn’t that right? Can anybody deny this, too?
So, if you confess that Meishu-sama is alive within each one of you, it means that you have to admit that he is breathing within you, at this very moment.
Now then, whose breathing is better? Yours or Meishu-sama’s? Bear in mind also, when we say “Meishu-sama,” it is the Meishu-sama who was born anew as a child of God and attained eternal life. Which breathing is better? Yours or Meishu-sama’s?
No question. Meishu-sama’s breathing is far better than our breathing, wouldn’t you say? The breathing of Meishu-sama that lasts eternally and is brimming with the life of God is far better than our human, mortal and dying breath, right?
If so, have you ever wished to be one with the breathing of Meishu-sama? If you have long believed that Meishu-sama is still alive after his ascension, have you ever wished to be one with his breathing? Actually, have you ever in your life as followers of Meishu-sama thought and admitted that Meishu-sama is breathing? Breathing within each one of you?
I don’t think many of us can say “yes” to all these questions.
Okay, I understand. From now on, I’ll try to be one with the breathing of Meishu-sama and live my life as his follower—Is this what we want to say? Well, not quite. There is one more crucial thing we have to consider.
In his hymn, Meishu-sama wrote:
“O Lord of light! / After I encountered you and decided to revere you, / I realized that I had been heading toward the edge of a cliff for a fall.” (May 21, 1935)
“You, the Savior! / Every time I hear your voice, / My body and soul rejuvenate and regain strength. / How precious is your voice!” (1936, unpublished)
“O how divine and wondrous you look. / I am holding back my tears of joy.” (May 15, 1936)
So, there’s someone whom Meishu-sama was revering. There’s someone whom Meishu-sama called “the Savior.” There’s someone whom Meishu-sama saw and could hardly contain his tears of joy. There’s someone whom Meishu-sama called “you.”
Who could this be? Who could this “you” be? Who could this Lord of light be? Who could this Savior be? We often say that Meishu-sama is the Savior, but Meishu-sama was listening to its voice, to the voice of the Savior.
Initially, Meishu-sama told us that this “you,” this Lord of light, was Kannon, a Buddhist god. But we all know that, for Meishu-sama, Kannon turned into Messiah. So this “you,” this Savior, is the Messiah.
Meishu-sama met the Messiah. Meishu-sama heard the voice of the Messiah. Meishu-sama saw him and cried out of joy.
And when he was born anew as a child of God, Meishu-sama became one with the Messiah, right? That’s why he said that he was born anew as the Messiah, right? That’s why we are permitted to call Meishu-sama “the Messiah Meishu-sama,” right?
But we have to know that the Messiah is an existence that is separate from Meishu-sama, for in the end, Meishu-sama was revering, hearing and looking at the Messiah.
Now, simple questions: Don’t you want to meet this Lord of light that Meishu-sama revered? Don’t you want to hear the voice of the Savior that Meishu-sama heard? Don’t you want to see how divine this Lord of light is and experience what Meishu-sama experienced? And cry out of joy?
I do. I definitely do.
More than that, I want to be one with this being, the Messiah. I want to be one with the Messiah and be born anew as a child of God, just like Meishu-sama.
I’m just a mere mortal. I am just going to die away one day. But I have hope. Meishu-sama showed me that hope—the hope that if I can be one with the Messiah who lives within me, I do not need to die. I can live eternally. You can live eternally too if you become one with the Messiah.
So let us strive to be one with the Messiah who lives within us. Let us strive to be one with the breathing of the Messiah who lives within us, because this breath is eternal. It has the power of life that revives everything.
Of course, this means to be one with the breathing of Meishu-sama, or to put it more accurately, to be one with the breathing of the Messiah who is one with Meishu-sama.
All this may sound quite vague to you, but try first. Try to discard your human, mortal and dying breath and be one with the breath of the Messiah who is one with Meishu-sama, because you’ll never know what’s going to happen.
Our breath is dying. The breaths of all the ancestors who live within us are dying. That is why our bodies suffer from various illnesses and our hearts are always in agony. But if our breath and the breaths of all the ancestors who live within us are transformed into the breath of God, our body may rejuvenate and our troubles disappear.
So yes, Meishu-sama is alive and breathing. He is alive and breathing because he is one with the breath of the Messiah, who lives eternally.
If you, too, really believe that Meishu-sama is alive, breathe out now. Return your breath to Meishu-sama. Return your mortal, dying breath to Meishu-sama. And breathe in. Breathe in the breath of Meishu-sama. Breathe in the breath of the Messiah who is one with Meishu-sama.
If you think your breath is better than Meishu-sama’s, that’s fine. You don’t need to do this. But I suggest you try first. A miracle may be awaiting you.