Shin Mei Spiritual Centre

Find Brightness

There are so many horrific situations in the world. The news brings us real time reports of sorrows, death, and destruction. It can be all too easy to be engulfed by darkness.
But there is light all around us. We just have to look for it. To choose brightness.

This is Shinto. This is the practice of always choosing gratitude and finding the illumination around us and in our world.

The “Way of the Kami” is to cultivate the art of seeing the brightness in life. Always. Of living in gratitude. Always.

The ancient tale of Ame no Uzume no Mikoto coaxing Amaterasu no O Kami from the cave illustrates this. Amaterasu was deeply offended when her brother committed various unruly transgressions. She retreated into a cave, Amano-Iwato, effectively hiding the sun and plunging the world into darkness, turmoil and distress.

The kami gathered together to find a solution, but it was Ame no Uzume who cleverly found a resolution. She turned over a tub near the cave entrance and began a comical and outrageous dance—in stark contrast to the solemnity and despair caused by Amaterasu’s absence.

The laughter and revelry of the kami piqued Amaterasu’s curiosity. She could not understand why the gods were so joyful and amused in her absence. So, Amaterasu peeked out to investigate the source of the commotion.
At that moment, the kami quickly blocked the cave entrance so she couldn’t retreat again. Thus, light was restored to the world.  Ame no Uzume chose to find joy and positivity in the situation, rather than lamenting the darkness. This story is the ultimate turn-around situation.  When you are faced with negativity—look for the light. This is the teaching of the kami.

This view makes for a better experience of living.  It allows us to support and serve others that they may also experience brightness.
Look for the light. Live with a view of brightness. This is Shinto—literally, the Way of the Kami 神ながら。