Record of Little Treasures

On Better Expressions

Takamori-sensei: “I sometimes cannot suppress a grunt of admiration even when I am watching TV. Even if I’m just idly listening to the TV, every time I hear a nice expression, I get up all of a sudden. People around me are taken aback, wondering what on earth is up. I’ll feel impressed by a phrase I hear from a TV show host, or a comedy act, or a comic storyteller. Even one word can make a huge difference. I run up to my study, murmuring that word again and again. People around me may think ‘Ah, he’s off again,’ but as I am a poor talker, I am always ravenous for better expressions.” December 1990

On Depth

Takamori-sensei said the following after he read a letter he’d received: “This person wrote that he understood how deep the teachings are, that he came to know how profound they are. If it was someone like Sakyamuni Buddha or Master Shinran saying this, it would make sense. But our wisdom is only shallow. It is inappropriate coming from us. ‘The more I listen to the teachings, the more I see I do not understand the depth of the Buddhist teachings.’ This must be what he truly felt. I feel that words like these have depth to them.” March 1991

On Buddhist Studies

Takamori-sensei: “When I was young, I would always take quotes from scriptures, write them down on a piece of paper, carry it around with me, and read it. When the paper became worn out, I would write the quote again on another piece of paper. Once I found myself able to recall the quote even after some time had passed, I would put a mark on the paper. If I put five marks on it, I would consider myself to have passed my test. I tried to see how many quotes I could memorize in an hour.” Buddhist studies are not something that we can just naturally master. From this we can infer Takamori-sensei’s persistent effort, which he does not lay to rest for even a second. January 1991

by Chise Kanda, the secretary of Takamori-sensei

Source: The Buddhist Village Times #40 | 2014, Record of Little Treasures

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