OUTLINE OF OOMOTO 10
10. OVERSEA EXPANSION OF OOMOTO
In July 1923, Esperanto, the international auxiliary language was first introduced into Oomoto Onisaburo. Dr. L.L Zamenhof invented Esperanto. (r.1859-1917), a Jewish oculist living in Poland, Russia. L.N. Tolstoy wrote in one of his letters, “It’s learning is so that I could quite freely read, if not write, in that language in less than two hours work, six years ago, when I received a grammar of Esperanto, a dictionary and articles written in it. Constructed on principles of simplicity, regularity and logic, this neutral language is now pretty well established all over the world, rendering service to the promotion of international understanding and world peace.
In view of the pro-European basis in vocabulary and structure of Esperanto, its future prosperity depends greatly on Asia. Onisaburo made much of the spirit of “homaranismo”, a doctrine demanding that everybody should respect and love man of all countries as his brother, which was actually the reason for creating Esperanto and just as the same as the idea of Oomoto. Therefore Onisaburo disregarded this in light of the absence of the oriental element in the language, and besides encouraged studying it by compiling an Esperanto-Japanese dictionary entitled “PerPoema Vortaro Esperanata-Japana”, which made it easy for people with limited education to understand it easily and to memorize the words.
An association for studying Esperanto was started in Oomoto, which was later known as known as Esperanto-Populariga Asocio and a monthly published under the title of “Verda Mondo” (Green World).
Conjointly with the introduction of Esperanto, Roman letters were adopted a few months later the same year.
On the first of September Tokyo and Yokohama areas were hit by horrific earthquakes, which devastated the region. Oomoto sent messengers of consolation to the afflicted districts. At that time great help was extended by a Chinese new spiritualists organization called Tao Yuan. In obedience to the order of “Fu-chi” (Oracle), the World Red Swastika Association (An organization of Tao Yuan for humanitarian activities) sent a mission head by Hou Yen-suan to Japan with large amounts of rice and money for the relief of sufferers of the disaster.
These Chinese spiritualists visited Ayabe and met Onisaburo and his wife through the introduction of Mr. Kenjiro Hayashide who was the Japanese consul to Nanking. They declared, The Oracle of Tao Yuan, stated that we must unite our efforts with a spiritual movement in Japan for the peace of the world and this we have found in Oomoto here in Ayabe. Later the oracle revealed Onisaburo to be a saint upon the peace and prosperity of all mankind.
Thus Tao Yuan and the World Red Swastika Association with a membership of 600,000 came to be amalgamated with Oomoto.
Tao Yuan began its existence as a new religion in the 1920’s.
About 1916 in the district of Ping Shantung Province in China, near the gulf of Bohei there was station a regiment under the commend of Colonel Lin Shao-chi. Mr. Wu Fu-lin was the chief of the district. The chief and colonel, both pious were made close friends; in order to get the spiritual messages they made communication through dead people, spirits by their own method called Sand-table and Wood-pen, alias “Fu-Chi”.
To hold an séance, Mr. Wu Fu-lin and others often visited the temple during their sabbatical in which Saint Shang was deified, and prayed for the descent of spirit. Many spirits honored them by their manifestation. At last the Father God himself gave revelations, under which they enshrined Laotzu, Sakya (Buddha), Jesus Christ, Mahomet and Confucius, because they had a faith of the five chief religions coming from one source.
It made a remarkable development since the Mother Temple of Tao Yuan was formally founded in China in 1922, and Onisaburo inaugurated Japan “Kobe” Tao Tuan and others in 1924.
On May 20 1925, Onisaburo long-cherished plan bore fruit in the inauguration ceremony of the World Federation of Religions held in Peking in China. Representation from Confucianism, Tao Yuan, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Lamaism, Wu-shan, Hutenkyo etc joined this league of religions.
And the next month saw Onisaburo started Jinrui-Aizenkai (ULBA) Universal Love and Brotherhood Association with the head quarters in Kameoka, Kyoto Prefecture. The object of this association is that its member’s should awaken to the great principle of universal love and brotherhood for mankind, regardless of all race, nation, creed etc; in order to realize a world of light filled with happiness and delight forever. The association developed; regional headquarters’, branches and organizations were established in more then 1000 places in Japan with more branches over seas. The center of the European movement was in Paris. The Jinrui Aizen Shinbun, the official organ of ULBA, polished three times a month in Tokyo and had a circulation at one time of over I million in Japan. For international readers, an Esperanto-monthly OOMOTO INTERNACIA, was issued from Paris under the able editorship of Kogetsu Nishimura, and another Esperanto-monthly, OOMOTO, from Kameoka. For the home mission such as organs were published as the printing office enlarged: Kami no Kuni (The Kindom of God), Zuisho Shinbun (Auspicious Tidings) and Shinnyo no Hikari (The true Light). When the Manchurian incident occurred (September 1931), the members of ULBA could effectively engage in missionary activities as well as relief of suffers in cooperation with the Red Swastika Association.
At the same time Oomoto and ULBA formed an affiliation with Chiushih Hsinchiao Wushan she – (World saving new religion, Virtue-understanding association): China – White Russians Organization, Russia: Pan-Russian association for the new spirit, Russia; Weisse Fahne (White Flag) Organization, Germany; White Fraternity, Bulgaria,Tsaili Hui (Rational Association), Manchuria; Lamaists Organization, Mongolia; The Great World Christian Spiritualist League and the New thought Alliance, English and Liga Espirta, Brazil, etc.
Onisaburo has written in one of the volumes of “Stories from the spirit world” (in 1923): art and religion are like brother or husband and wife, the former is to show man the way to heaven through the gate of beauty while the latter to god through that of truth and goodness.
To unify art and religion was his long cherished wish, which led him t last to found Meiko-Sha and publish a literary magazine Meiko (Bright Light). He taught that art is not the gifted few or professional, but can be enjoyed by ordinary people to enrich their daily lives. He himself composed some 600,000 Japanese 31 syllable poems. His paintings and pottery were now and then exhibited to surprise the visitors’ eyes.
After The Manchurian Incident Onisaburo founded the Dai Nippon Budo Senyo Kai, (Great Japan Society for Promotion of Martial Arts), Showa Konsei Ki (Showa Women’s Association), (Showa Young Men’s Association) and Showa Shinsei Kai (Showa sacred society) to start a vigorous campaign for spiritual reformation of the Japanese people to counteract the current tendency of ultra-nationalism. Millions of Japanese, young and old, joined these movements of this popular religion under Onisaburo.