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Voices of Chicago

Guiding Force

Looking back into my life, I have noticed that a certain invisible hand has always supported me. I am not talking about the economics term of Adam Smith, the “invisible hand,” that describes the self-regulating nature of the marketplace. The invisible hand that I am mentioning here is a guiding force that opens doors for me. Help is offered to me when I am in trouble. Something leads me to the right direction, when I am lost. Opportunities are coming to me, rather than catching them. It is something more than that I am a lucky guy. I feel that I am always surrounded with a miraculous force that is filled with grace.

The best example of this invisible force in my life is the miracle presented by my baby. In 2004, my wife was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. Her thyroid gland was not producing as much thyroid hormone as it should. A doctor of obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) told us that it was impossible for her to get pregnant in a natural way, because her egg was not ejecting due to the hormonal imbalance. The doctor recommended that we use artificial insemination. My wife and I did not buy the doctor’s comments. We decided to give our fate into God’s hands. She did not receive any medical treatments, other than my energy healing. I, as a professional energy healer, worked on her as often as I could. At Christmas of 2007, Santa Claus delivered the delightful news to us, of her pregnancy. A woman above the age of forty who was told “impossible to get pregnant” received her first baby in a totally natural way. Can you imagine how miraculous this was?

Not only was the conception in itself miraculous, but also the delivery was miraculous. A day before the pre-arranged induced delivery, she had contractions. We rushed to the hospital at about 8:00 AM. Our baby was delivered at 1:30 PM on the same day, and in a natural way. All the nurses we saw dropped their jaws, saying “Oh, my God. This is the quickest and easiest delivery for a first time mother. This is perhaps the hospital record!” It was a girl. Since the delivery was so smooth, no harmful impacts were given to our baby. She has grown up in a healthy way. She has not had any illness so far, not even a high fever (if you have a child, you know how remarkable this is). She is 16 months old now and perfectly healthy.

Speaking of my wife, I met her in 1995, when I was completely doomed. My life in Japan was quite catastrophic. I was working for one of the major commercial banks in Japan. The job shift was incredibly brutal, working between 8 AM and 2 AM, that allowed me to sleep only two or three hours every day. By the way, this level of inhumane working shift is not rare in Japan. I considered quitting this job, and to pursue my career in environmental conservation, about which I was passionate. I wanted to study environmental science abroad. My wife opposed this idea, because she did not want to give up our prosperous life style, that was sustained by my high income. I divorced my wife to liberate myself, but lost money and reputation (divorce is culturally unacceptable in Japan). No one was against my wish, but I could go nowhere, lacking the necessary resources. I kept working in a harsh environment at the bank.

Then, my current wife, out of the blue, appeared into my life. She said, “I love your dream. I will support you, thus, I want you to just pursue your dream without worrying about anything.” I quit the job. We got married in 1996. She found a job in Chicago, and I matriculated in a graduate school in Syracuse, New York. We together moved to the US in 1996. Later, her employer sponsored her permanent residency in the U.S., and I also got a green card as a spouse.

Through the graduate study of environmental science, I had sought to be an analyst of international environmental policy. I had expected to get a job opportunity at some research institution. At first, I was heading toward an analytical academic arena. Then, I was driven to a different track. One day, at a class of Political Psychology, a class mate gave me a book, The Power of Myth, written by Joseph Campbell, saying to me, “Masaru, I think this book will inspire you.” In that book, I encountered the most inspiring phrase that changed the direction of my life. It was “Follow your bliss.” Campbell, a famous authority in mythology, claims that your inner voice guides you to your fulfillment. He conveys this message in various ways, for instance; “Go where your body and soul want to go” and “Listen to the demands of your heart.” I was drawn to the human psyche and its potentiality. I shifted the focus of my study from a policy aspect to a psychological aspect. I started to read countless books on psychology, by such famous people as Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung, and Ken Wilber. Later, the knowledge and wisdom I gained through those attempts became the precious foundation to provide counseling, as an energy healer, to my clients.

Before completing my graduate study, my father passed away in the summer of 2002, due to lung cancer. I felt that I had killed my father. The reason why I felt so was that I had made all of the medical decisions on behalf of him; which doctor he needed to see, what alternative therapy he should adopt, what kind of diet was desirable, etc. In early 2002, he went to a hospital because of abnormal fatigue. The diagnosis was relayed to him like a thunderclap; stage IV lung cancer. In other words, death was inevitable. It shocked him enough to become unable to make any rational decision by himself. I deferred my graduate study and went back to Japan. I took over all of his decision-making processes. I was beside him twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, until he died.

Due to the impact of a vast sensation of guilt, I fell into ruin physically, emotionally and mentally. I was not functional. I could not get back to graduate school until the next year. I suffered from insomnia for about a year after his death. I collapsed in many ways at many levels.

In spite of its immense impact on me, the loss of my father changed my life positively. It turned my attention very deeply into an internal reality. At the very moment his heartbeat stopped, I physically sensed the whole atmosphere in the room change. I was astonished and asked myself, “Oh, what happened? Some sort of spiritual presence was gone.” That was the very first time in my life I actually felt the presence of a soul depart from a body. I was intrigued to know what took place.

After I finished my graduate study, I stepped into the field of alternative therapy, energy healing in particular. In my eyes, it was so clear that we are not ordinary pieces of clay but a substance that has been infused with Spirit and charged with life force energy. Any illness or disease is rooted in the separation from the Source, which is the deepest psychological and spiritual ground from where our awareness was emerged. As you are detached from the Source, not only do you feel alienated, but also you receive less energy from it. An approach of energy healing enables you to regain balance in your life by reconnecting you with this inner most essence. I decided to devote the rest of my life to aligning myself with that deepest essence of life.

It has taken a lot of effort to master various kinds of healing modalities, and to shift the level of my awareness. I have done a lot of spiritual practices, including hours of meditation every day. Also, I received a lot of healing sessions to alleviate the wounds of my father’s death. As the result of constant dedicated attempts, I have not only successfully released the pain of the loss of father, but I have also changed my internal world completely. I became a totally different person. I entered the Unity Consciousness, where I can sense a spiritual connectedness with everything. I know that who I really am is the Infinite consciousness. I am now living in an unencumbered life. In comparison with the Infinity, any problem in daily life looks like a tiny dot. All problems are nothing. Nothing matters in my life. I become happier and happier, day by day.

As you can see, every major incident I mentioned above does not exist as a single, separate experience. If I had not met my wife, I perhaps would not have come to the U.S., which led me to learn environmental science. If I had not learned it, I would not have encountered The Power of Myth, which guided me into the depth of the human psyche. If my father had survived, I would not have chosen to become an energy healer. If so, I could not have helped my wife to have our baby. Everything together has pushed me into a certain direction, as if I were a mast on a sailboat that received the wind and gained the momentum to go forward.

I feel that some invisible force has been trying to manifest itself through me. When I touch it, or tap into it, I can feel that its vibration is resonated with deep love, affirmation, and forgiveness. As I am with it, I feel safe, calm, fulfilled, peaceful, joyful, and blissful. Especially, I have noticed that my sense of loneliness has vanished. No matter where I am, no matter what I am doing, I no longer feel lonely. As I am in the flow of that invisible force, everything goes favorably for me. Things are manifested in a joyful way. As a spiritual teacher and healer, I am sharing the insight that I attained: You are always supported by something greater than you. As you tune into it, you will realize that it is bringing you a lot of miracles. Miracles are everywhere in front of your eyes right now. I am helping my clients and students attain that realization and to actually experience the great miracles offered to them.

* This article was originally published in Voices of Chicago, online journal of the Chicago Japanese American Historical Society.

© 2009 Masaru Kato

family spirituality

About this series

The articles in this series were originally published in Voices of Chicago, the online journal of the Chicago Japanese American Historical Society, which has been a Discover Nikkei Participating Organization since December 2004.

Voices of Chicago is a collection of first-person narratives about the experiences of people of Japanese descent living in Chicago. The community is composed of three waves of immigration, and their descendants: The first, about 300 people, came to Chicago around the time of the Columbian Exposition in 1899. The second, and largest, group is descended from 30,000 who came to Chicago directly from the internment camps after World War II. Called the “ReSettlers,” they created a community built around social service organizations, Buddhist and Christian churches and small businesses. The third, more recent, group are Japanese nationals who came to Chicago, beginning in the 1980s, as artists and students and remained. A fourth, non-immigrant, group are Japanese business executives and their families who live in Chicago for extended periods, sometimes permanently.

Chicago has always been a place where people can re-create themselves, and where diverse ethnic communities live and work together. Voices of Chicago tells the stories of members of each of these four groups, and how they fit into the mosaic of a great city.

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