MESSAGE FROM THE INTERNATIONAL SPIRITUAL TRIANING CENTER
Ms. Angela Ikemoto, resident of Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.
I attended the 43rd International Spiritual Training Seminar held in Florida from December 14 to 16. It was my third Seminar.
Since my grandparents living in Brazil were followers of Seicho-No-Ie, I was introduced to the teaching in my childhood through my mother. At Christmas and New Year’s holidays relatives gathered at my grandparents’ house in Rio de Janeiro. My grandparents used to take their grandchildren and neighbors’ children to a children’s spiritual training seminar held in the town.
Subsequently, I participated in a youth spiritual training seminar held at the South American Spiritual Training Center in Sao Paulo. There I learned the importance of having a dream and that the dream is certain to materialize. My dream at the time was to go abroad to study and find a job. I now work in the State of Washington in the U.S.A.
One of the reasons why I love spiritual training seminars is that I can immerse myself completely in the teaching. Amid busy daily routines I sometimes find that I have forgotten the teaching. That is when I should return home to a spiritual training seminar.
At this Seminar held at a beautiful site under a sunny Florida, I met soul’s brothers and sisters who had the same purpose, received the guidance of Rev. Yoshiko Teshigawara (Ordained Minister) and other lecturers and re-discovered the Seicho-No-Ie way of life.
Most participants were from Florida and more than half of them were first-timers. Their joy filled the entire Seminar hall. What impressed me especially was that during the group discussion one participant said, “There is only goodness in this world.” I was made to reflect on my life. I had problems with my father in my junior and senior high school days. But because of it, I had the opportunity to study the Seicho-No-Ie teaching. There is absolutely nothing that is bad. I could muster gratitude to my father from the bottom of my heart. During the Mind Purification Ceremony held at the chapel, tears flowed down my cheeks, purifying my soul. I was filled with the joy of a child of God.
Also at the early morning Shinsokan session, I learned the importance of tuning up the mental state and start the new day as a child of God. I was also made to realize during the candle service that my introduction to Seicho-No-Ie was made possible by many people who brought to Brazil the flame of truth lit by Dr. Masaharu Taniguchi. I recognized afresh the weight of my mission.
I returned home with a mind’s suitcase filled with an encounter with wonderful participants, memories, laughter and joy. The actual journey starts from now. Soon after my return home, I was appointed sub-leader of the English Group in Seattle. I was given the wonderful mission to hand over to others the light ignited at the Spiritual Training Seminar.
I would like to extend my appreciation to all the people I met at the Seminar. I look forward to the next Seminar.