NA MU MYO HO REN GE KYO
When I got to Gangjeong Village, I soon met many beautiful spirits there, I quickly regretted my past mistakes, in other words, I thought “Why was I not one of peace group members who visited Jeju twice from Tacoma, U.S. in 2013 and 2014?”
My little sister Melissa from US and Korean sister Choi Sung-Hee picked us up at the bus stop on Jan. 20 with big smiling faces. Rev. Imai Shonin, 86 years old, my teacher monk from Japan got off the bus too. We had an unusual snowstorm during our short 3 day stay in Jeju, including our visit to 4/3 Museum.
Only a few hours and one overnight passed, I’ve already recognized the people here are real, and that was a really beautiful moments in my life. The very next morning we joined the 100 prayer bows with long time activists and young students visitors at the gate of the Navel base. Although the obnoxious construction was completed, that prayer is still continuing not just in my heart but also on the earth for our better future. I will never forget it and I promise to come back here again in my life time. Thank you everybody include Dongsok-san who has great spirit.
Gangjeong is in the same latitude as my hometown Usa in Kyushu, Japan and we also produce sweet mandarin orange. “Usa” is proud of it’s ancient history and advanced people from Silla settled here. Since after WW2 the reservoir area “Hijudai” behind my hometown has been used as a live firing field by US Marine Corps in Okinawa. I visited Okinawa for one week with 23 US citizens before visiting Jeju. To my regret we could not stay Jeju in even for 5 days because I wished to visit Putagol(Pagoda) Park in Seoul for the prayer for the souls of Korean victims under Japanese occupation especially for Jugun-ianfu(comfort women). I came back to Seattle now and I am thinking what is the next step for peace walking with the people whom I met in Gangjeong. Not just a word. Gassho(palms together)
Kanaeda, Senji, Japanese Buddhist monk belong to Nipponzan Myohoji order-Gangjeong visit Jan 20-23rd 2017