Category Archives: Agriculture

A Modern View of Shinto:  Scholar and Shinto Priest Minoru Sonoda

Chichibu-Jinja

Entrance of Chichibu Jinja. Photo by Commons Wikimedia

Preface

Dr. Minoru Sonoda (薗田/稔) is chief priest of Chichibu Jinja (秩父神社) Shinto shrine in Saitama, as well as professor emeritus of Kyoto University and professor at Kogakkan University. His doctorate in religious studies is from Tokyo University.

Dr. Sonoda is chairman of the International Shinto Research Association for the exchange of research with people overseas who are studying Shinto. Although Dr. Sonoda is identified with Shinto, he promotes the idea that Shinto is not a “religion” in the Western sense of the word. Rather, Shinto is a type of community tradition that has naturally developed. Instead of being an individual faith-based activity, Shinto is community, culture, and heritage closely tied to nature. When put this way, doesn’t it seem that Shinto is far from being exclusive to Japan, and instead can be understood and practiced by people around the world?

Interview

An interview conducted by Satsuya Tabuchi appeared in SPF Voices Newsletter of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation in 2006. Click here for the full report in English. An article about Dr. Sonoda appears here. Click here for Chichibu Jinja’s home page.

Here are some highlights of the topics discussed with SPF. We presume that Dr. Sonoda, as Shinto priest, used the term kami which was translated into gods. Since the word kami does not accurately translate into the Western word gods, we prefer to keep the term kami. 

Kami, unseen spirits behind the scenes

Kami abide in specific places such as sources of water or other places that are important to life. Kami are unseen to the human eye. What is sacred “lurks in the depths of the forest. It is a psychic center behind the community, not in the middle. Even if Japan’s gods don’t have form, they dwell within pure objects as spirits.”

Culture and agriculture

Shinto is the product of agrarian culture. The word culture comes from the Latin colere meaning to inhabit, cultivate, protect, and honor. People who settled peacefully in a particular place developed culture. People grow crops and receive their life. Receiving life and giving thanks for it is how Shinto views life. This world view developed naturally in the agrarian society.

Nature and life

Human beings, imbued with life by nature, live together with nature. Shinto honors the preciousness of life.

What is life?

“Life isn’t something that lasts just one generation. Life is life precisely because it’s passed on from parents to children. This is the most valid way for human beings to view life.”

Afterword

Dr. Sonoda is proactive in the chinju no mori sacred forest movement. What is chinju no mori? Mori means forest. Chinju is written 鎮守. The first character 鎮 is read as shizumeru, to calm the spirit; the second character 守 is mamoru which means to protect. Thus, we may say chinju no mori is a forest whose tranquility is protected. In other words, let’s protect the peace and serenity provided us by forests.

Related to this is the shinrin yoku trend, often translated as “forest bathing.” Shinrin is the compound word, forest-grove, and yoku simply means to bathe. People are going to forested areas for personal peace and tranquility as well as for proven health benefits.

 

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Narasaki’s Lines of Power for Agriculture

Narasaki Iyashirochi figure

Iyashirochi and agriculture

We have learned about Narasaki Kougetsu and the Katakamuna documents which he recorded. Now let us look at his technical work. Narasaki was an eletrical engineer working in the mountains of Hyogo-ken after the Second World War. His work involved electrical power lines with special interest in their effect on the growing of plants and crops. His field work included studying the terrain in the mountain range of Rokkosan. Narasaki found that the location of an iron foundry could be correlated to superior or inferior grades of iron produced there.

He found correlations of mountain peaks and valleys with lines of high and low life energies. Lines of high energy connect mountain peaks. These lines he called iyashirochi. Lines connecting valleys have low energy and he called them kegarechi. Kegare is a word denoting negative qualities.

It is difficult to translate iyashirochi. It is related to places of iyashi or iyasaka, which are positive nouns. Kobayashi Bigen Sensei recommends as a toast to abundance and happiness the ancient Iyasaka! rather than the current Kampai or the former Banzai.

Nevertheless, iyashirochi have high electrical potential. Iyashirochi are characterized by an abundance of negative ions which strengthen the body. Also the negative ions balance the positive ions and there is a natural flow of charges, more energy moving. As Alfred Watkins in England showed, ley lines are lines of power. Iyashirochi may be ley lines of similar power.

Dowsing
As is known, dowsing is a technique used to find deposits of water, ley lines, stone walls, and other underground objects. In Japan, a dowser using a branch of the hashibami hazelnut tree can feel certain changes when near such objects. The explanation is given by a physicist from Sorbonne: underground water affects the earth’s magnetic field. The magnetic field is felt by the dowser’s body, and the effect is magnified and made visible by movement of the branch.

A team of three scientists has connected dowsing to megaliths. John Taylor is a professor at Kings College in England. Eduardo Baronofsky is an Argentinian expert. Bill Louis is a dowser with technical experience. He can feel water under stone circles that is flowing to other stone monuments. He places his hands on megaliths and identifies points of circling, spiraling energy. He measures those places and finds that they have twice the magnetic field strength. From these experiments, we may conclude that megaliths do contain significant energy, in the form of magnetic energy.

Scientists and dowsers report that menhirs, dolmens, and other megalithic works have been placed at points of high energy. Generally these are places where ley lines cross. It can also be noted that in Australia, Aborigines hold ceremonies at power points characterized by megaliths and pictures of snakes. Snakes and their brethren, dragons, often represent these ley lines.

Ed. note:  Illustration and information from Narasaki’s book, Three Electrostatic Laws, see earlier post. Some of the information in this post comes from Akiyoneto, Nazo no Katakamuna Bunmei, Mystery of Katakamuna Civilization, 1981, and Narasaki’s book, Three Electrostatic Laws. See earlier posts. If you use the search box for keywords such as Katakamuna, Narasaki, etc., you will find many other related posts.

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Three Electrostatic Laws of Narasaki

Electrostatic「静電三法」Three Electrostatic Laws. Re-reprint authorized by the Narasaki Institute and published by CMC Technology Development Co., Ltd. 2003.

A simple technology for agriculture and health

Although these investigations were carried out in Japan in the years immediately following the Second World War, the value of this book is immense today, perhaps even more so. Fortunately, the book was re-published in 2003. Unfortunately, the book is written in Japanese and no English version has appeared (according to the publisher), nor are there any articles for the non-Japanese reader. However, we did find a mention of Narasaki on a Russian website, in English. See the link at the end.

Consequently we have decided to give our description of the applied research for eco-agriculture and human well-being called Three Electrostatic Laws. Correspondence with the publisher resulted in their recommendation that we present this page from their website (http://www.narasaki-inst.com/seidensanpou.htm).

Description and Reason for Re-publication of Narasaki’s book

The original of this book was authored by Narasaki Satsuki 60 years ago, when Japan was in a period of confusion over its defeat in the Second World War. In that era people could only think of the hardship in living. It was Satsuki Narasaki’s intention for post-war reconstruction to improve living through science and technology. He proposed the Three Electrostatic Laws.

The philosophy of Satsuki Narasaki, with an eye to science, is to see through the nature of the mechanism that we humans have been kept alive with. There is insight and exceptional wisdom in the universe of static electricity. It is a new science and technology point of view in which a similarity rule can be found. Every new agricultural technology and industrial production technology can take advantage of what we have developed into the study of healthy living technology.

The Three Electrostatic Laws

  • Plant wave farming takes advantage of the potential force of nature. It is a pharmacological agricultural technology that does not make heavy use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers.
  • The substance modified method, by changing the external environment of the materials electrostatically, is industrial production technology that can be varied to suit the purpose in a very energy-saving method based on the properties of the material.
  • In addition, the human body wave health method has proposed a constructive medicine to create a healthy body from the relationship between electricity and the human body using the electrical phenomenon of the environment.

Need for Three Electrostatic Laws

In the latter half of the 20th century the world is full of pesticide and chemical fertilizer-intensive agriculture from science and technology. Europe, with energy mass consumption of industrial production, went to medical care using drugs. Now we enter the 21st century by the progress of science and technology. At first glance, we appeared to have enjoyed the convenient and comfortable life. However, as to the price, we think we’ve lost, one after another, irreplaceable important things. We have not appled brakes on environmental pollution and global warming, and the balance of the planet, human society and the natural world have collapsed. Our bodies also have lost harmony with the original rhythm of life. The life that man has received has only been kept by the grace of the laws of nature and the universe. We think we need to remember this.

We live in the 21st century. Let us once again explore the Three Electrostatic Laws that Narasaki Satsuki proposed sixty years ago. We believe that the time has come to practice the Three Electrostatic Laws.    

Practicing the Three Electrostatic Laws

In the re-publication of this book, we heard from many people who have been practicing the Three Electrostatic Laws, the bequest of Satsuki Narasaki. In addition, we directly received the support and cooperation of the people who studied under Satsuki Narasaki and who have continued the research. We would like to thank them from the bottom of our hearts. Every one of the readers who meets with this book finds a new perspective deepened by the true understanding of the sense of space and the natural world. We are anxious to spread the circle of research and practice of the Three Electrostatic Laws.

Links

http://www.narasaki-inst.com/seidensanpou.htm

http://centrestroy.ru/en/?option=com_k2&view=itemlist&task=user&id=97765

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“No volcanoes, no agriculture”

IMG_0493

Paramagnetism: Rediscovering Nature’s Secret Force of Growth, 1995

“No volcanoes, no agriculture — for volcanic ash and rock are the guts of good soil.”

Recently, I came across ‘paramagnetism’ in two ways. I was searching for “Satsuki Narasaki’, author of Three Electrostatic Laws, when I came across a Russian article in which the writer used charcoal in growing plants as is traditional in Japan. He referred to the work of Japanese physicist Narasaki as well as books by Philip S. Callahan on paramagnetism.

The following day, an e-mail newsletter about feng shui arrived. It was entitled, “Paramagnetism: war and peace.” Not only is paramagnetism a positive factor in growing healthy crops, it seems to be inversely correlated with war zones!

And so I ordered a copy of Callahan’s book, Paramagnetism: Rediscovering Nature’s Secret Force of Growth, 1995. With a doctorate in entymology, Callahan is a first-rate all-around scientist, in the mold of the natural historians of old. Knowledgeable about physics as easily as birds and insects, eager to improve agricultural yields, he presents a wealth of easy-to-read information on all these seemingly-unrelated fields related to paramagnetism.

The following excerpts may be of interest to Okunomichi’s readers.

p29 We may understand then that there are three ways to generate this valuable magnetic force called paramagnetism into the soil:

1.  By adding volcanic rock into the soil.

2.  By fiberization so that paramagnetic oxygen reaches the roots in soggy soil.

3.  By using weeds, which are green containers of paramagnetic minerals, in our compost or manure.

p36 In Japan one gets a feeling of restfulness in the wooden and thatch-roofed Shinto shrine of the sacred groves. I began to feel that if the vital force of rocky places made one feel energetic and the wooden shrines and trees of sacred groves made one feel relaxed, that there seemed to be two forces at work. One force was calming and restful, the other energizing and fatigue defeating. Perhaps in Eastern terms, the yin of the female and the yang of the male?

It was through reading the brilliant writings of the Irish genius John Tyndall that I finally realized that these vital forces were not magnetic … but the paramagnetic and diamagnetic properties of rocks and plants.

p37 Diamagnetism is a negative movement, or movement away from a magnetic field. Paramagnetism is a strong positive attraction to a magnet. Most organic molecules are diamagnetic and most volcanic rock and ash are paramagnetic.

p33 Forms which Westerners would consider inanimate have become fused with vitality through Shinto. Whereas we in the West would mould or break natural form to our design, the Japanese, recognizing vitality inherent in the form, shape, and design to release the vitality.   The Ocean in the Sand by Mark Holborn

p46 Most organic compounds, including all plants, are diamagnetic. If plants are diamagnetic and good growing soil paramagnetic, then we must be dealing with the yin and yang of Chinese and Japanese geomancy.

p47 By positioning such rocks in relationship to the sun and to each other, one can control plant growth. Apparently the ancients knew about this yin and yang, diamagnetic/paramagnetic phenomenon and utilized it in their Zen gardens.

Paramagnetism is associated with:

  • Volcanic rocks , granite, basalt 
  • Oxygen 
  • Yang 
  • Sacred sites

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