Festival of Oneness - Ceremony to Express Gratitude

November 15, 2022
Tokyo, Japan / Worldwide

On November 6, 2022, Shinnyo-en celebrated the 2nd day of the annual Festival of Oneness with practitioners and guests from all over the world gathering at Shinnyo-en's Ogen Center in Tachikawa, Tokyo, Japan. All COVID protocols and prevention measures were followed for the gathering.

This year the "Ceremony to express Gratitude" was held in honor of the 80th year of Her Holiness Shinso Ito as well as reflecting on the 33 years she has been guiding the global Shinnyo Buddhist Community, upon the passing of the Founding Master Shinjo Ito in 1989.

The ceremony was organized and orchestrated by members of the Shinnyo-en community worldwide. Shinnyo-en Temples and Centers were able to connect virtually for the ceremony so that all could participate.  

Her Holiness surprised attendees by making an unannounced appearance towards the end of the celebration. She had been resting for recovery and rehabilitation after undergoing hip surgery a few weeks ago.


She addressed the gathering with a message of gratitude and resilience: "I offered prayers, conducting rites remotely for the Festival of Oneness. And today I was able to see the actual images of the ceremony, to see practitioners of our path to shinnyo place their trust in the Shinnyo Founders and our spiritual lights the Ryodoji. This is wonderful. That trust will empower you with the courage to persevere and not let anything hold you back. This is something sacred, something to be thankful for, and it will continue to amplify your efforts as you go forward. I hope to endeavor together with all of you. Thank you very much."

Her message invigorated listeners around the world as they looked toward the celebrations of Shakyamuni Buddha's Awakening on December 8th and the year-end observances that commemorate the initiation of the Shinnyo path in 1935. It was in 1935 that the Shinnyo-en founders received a sacred image of Buddha Mahavairochana Achala, said to be a masterpiece of the 12th century Japanese sculptor Unkei. It is traditionally a moment to reaffirm the founders' resolve to 'work for the sake of people and the world' as the altruistic center line of all shinnyo practice.