Anniversaries of Oyasama (Nensai)

by Yoshikazu Fukaya

Oyasama withdrew from physical life on the lunar date of January 26, 1887. The First, Fifth, 10th, 20th, and subsequent "anniversaries of Oyasama" have been observed since then. The most recent anniversary, the 90th Anniversary of Oyasama, was observed between January 26 and February 18, 1976.*

Oyasama shortened Her term of life and withdrew from physical life out of Her parental love to hasten and encourage our spiritual growth in the cause of world salvation. Although we cannot see Her physically, Oyasama is still alive today, working for the sake of single-hearted salvation (refer to "The truth of the everliving Oyasama" [5.95]). Therefore, an anniversary of Oyasama is unparalleled in the world in the sense that it is "an anniversary for a person who is still alive and working."

There used to be some misunderstanding among the general public about this, and at times banners were displayed reading, "Happy ___th Anniversary of Oyasama." Essentially, an anniversary of Oyasama cannot be considered a cause for celebration. The anniversaries of Oyasama started from an event that must have been an occasion of utter hopelessness for the people at the time since it meant they could no longer see their beloved Oyasama or hear Her voice. Yet, we cannot but rouse ourselves to action when we consider that Oyasama had shown us such an occasion out of Her parental love to guide and nurture us, Her children, who lacked sufficient spiritual growth.

The best way to respond to Oyasama's parental love is to make our utmost effort to be in accord with Her intention at each momentous season that leads up to Her anniversary every ten years. Oyasama expects us to make such efforts, and we will bring joy to Her by doing so, thereby making the most important offering we can ever make for Her anniversary. Each anniversary of Oyasama represents an irreplaceable milestone for all of us who are attempting to approach the intention of God the Parent with each step that we take.

*This article was originally published in 1977 the year after the 90th Anniversary of Oyasama.