(Read the previous part HERE)
By Hiroki Hazeyama, Hyogo
I suffered in the Kobe Earthquake 16 years ago, and my favorite city of Kobe regrettably turned to rubble.
Having also lost my health, I do not know how many hundreds of times I thought I could not live anymore. However, thanks to Amida’s inaudible plea, I came to see why I must not die.
The only reason I was able to carry on so far was because of the hope that someday I would be able to achieve absolute happiness. No matter how hard things may be, the ray of hope is everlasting.
By Masumi Kake, Osaka
I experienced the Kobe Earthquake at my home in Osaka. My furniture fell on the floor due to the violent shakes from the earthquake, and I lost some dishes, besides all my prized possessions, in a matter of seconds. My wardrobe also fell on my bed. Thus, my life may have been in jeopardy had I been asleep. Despite prolonged loneliness and agony, it was when I encountered Master Shinran’s true teaching that I was finally able to rejoice at my survival.I choke up when I watch on TV people who lost their homes and families in the tsunami and are consequently suffering inconceivable pain as we speak. I cannot help but hope that these people will have special bonds with Buddhism and that they would continue to cherish what precious life they have left.
By Kenji Ishida, Kyoto
A sophomore at Kobe University at the time, I experienced the Kobe Earthquake at my friend’s house. Immediately following the earthquake, I was unsure as to what had happened for a while. Carefully looking at my surroundings in the dark, I realized what was just a second ago our room on the second floor had dropped to the ground. After our stay in the shelter came to an end and I returned home to Osaka, I was astonished once again that things were exactly the way I left. I could not help but ponder how illusion-like everything is. The following Sunday, there was a sermon in Mie prefecture about true faith. It hit home with me that without seeking truth, life has no meaning. Seeing the aftermath of the Eastern Japan Earthquake on TV brings to mind my brush with the Kobe Earthquake 16 years ago, and my heart goes out to all the victims. I realized, amidst the rubble of the earthquake, that being able to hear Buddhism from Takamori Sensei was my most precious gift. We are born as humans solely to hear the Vow of Amida. I would like to share with the victims of the East Japan Earthquake that nothing surpasses Amida’s Vow
Source: The Buddhist Village Times #04 | 2011, Immortal Light Found in Buddhism (Part 2)
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