Many times I have experienced people’s attitudes suddenly changing towards me. I would like to have a good conversation with others but there
is something in me that interferes and prevents me from doing so. I am nineteen years old and do not have any friends of my own. I feel the only
people I can trust are my family and I am very lonely. How can I become closer to others and have friends with whom I can carry on an ordinary
(M.G., 19 years old, male)
Response given by Reverend Hiroyuki Abe, Seicho-No-Ie Ordained Minister
A friend who used to talk freely suddenly turns very cold. Such an experience can happen to anyone. I also had this experience about a half year ago with someone who did not greet me when I saw him nor did he look at me. Not that we were seeing each other often, but whenever we met, we used to converse amicably with each other.
I wondered, what happened? I gave this matter a lot of thought and wondered if I did something wrong the last time we met. Then, I found out there was a reason. I realized that I had once unintentionally ignored him. I believe we all err in our everyday life without realizing it.
When we learn of the mistakes we have made, it is important to apologize immediately. If you do not have the opportunity to apologize directly to the person, you should close your eyes, visualize him talking to you with a big smile, and pray for him. The Shinsokan of Reconciliation would be very appropriate. I am sure the situation will correct itself. If you have any questions regarding Shinsokan, please contact the Missionary Area office of your district and inquire about it.
It is often said that whoever appears before you is a reflection of your mind. When you set your mind in order, those who come before you will appear wonderful. Reverend Masaharu Taniguchi has written the following in Truth of Life, Volume 40. “When a person is always smiling, his health and destiny will naturally change for the better. You too, whether your life is in the classroom, at home, or in society, when you smile and say, ‘I am already happy; there is only happiness,’ your destiny will surely change for the better. Whether it is our children’s health, peace at home, or success of the husband’s business, all things will turn out for the best.” (p. 110)
Reverend Taniguchi also writes in his book, The Truth, New Edition, Volume 1, that in order to live on friendly terms with others, it is important to be aware that you are one with one another. As long as you think there is the egotistic self that is separate from others, you are going to have difficulty establishing friendships. It is written in this book that whether it is within the nation or in the home, friendships will be established only when oneness prevails. (pp. 181-182)
We are all children of God, wonderful brothers and sisters. It is important for us to know that our life and the lives of others are all spiritual. If you live with a bright mind and smiles, someone in tune with your mind will appear and I guarantee you will have a wonderful good friend.
From Riso Sekai (Ideal World), April 2007 issue, pp. 12-13.
©Reverend Hiroyuki Abe