I have read and studied the Inauguration address by the President Obama. I was disappointed that I could not understand it without the texts that was published on news paper. I expected I could understand only by listening his speech a little bit more, but there were a lot of unfamiliar words for me.
In that address, I found the new word “non-believer”.
We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus – and non-believers. We are shaped by every Language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth:
I wonder if I am non-believers or not. It might sound curious for some people, but I really wonder how I should explain myself when someone asks me what is my religion.
I go to the shrines that is the space for Shinto believer, and also I go into temples that is for Buddhist. I feel godly there and pray for a happiness for my family. Sometimes, I reflect myself in flont of them and try to get some power.
I feel at any time someone like God looking at me from above. We say such feeling in Japanese “Otento sama ga miteiru/お天道さまが見ている” . Otento sama is looking at you. Otento sama is something like God, and for some people it can be someone passed away. When I took a bad attitude or did wrong, Otento sama was looking at me, and gives me a punishment. We say “Bachi ga ataru/ばち（罰）があたる” that means “you will get a punishment” When I am suffering, Otento sama leads me to the right way.
A couple times a year, we go to the graves of our ancestors. We clean them up and make the offering like foods and flowers. In these occasion, we thank for our happiness and swear to keep this prosperous for the future. My kids are looking at us and learning the heart of respectation to our ancestors.
When Tatsu keeps doing wrong even though I say to him to stop, I’ll give this phrase to him “OK, go ahead, but Otento sama is looking at you, and you will get a punishment someday” This magical phrase prevents the Japanese from being deviant. ( I should say this phrase becomes old recently, and doesn’t have effect on young people! )
We can say Otento-sama is a kind of religious God, but we don’t have its dogma or the icon. However, I feel I have been living with a kind of principle that is handed down from my parents, and also I will hand it down to my kids. but…what is this? Is it a religion? What kind of people who Mr.Obama called non-believers are?