New Facebook Page

Hello everyone,

Please join our Facebook page for regular updates:

We will have the 6 year anniversary “Apple Cider” Goma on Saturday Sept 28th near Bristol, Vermont. Please contact for more details

Posted in news | Leave a comment

Update of July Goma and Construction

Minnasama doumo,

Now we have finished our July Goma and construction projects. There are some pictures posted in the gallery…please scroll down the gallery page to see them:

The new shingaku plaque for the Torii with calligraphy for “Fudosan Kongo-Ji” done by Rev Tanaka and detailed in 24K gold pain

Our new projects include

1. Build new altar for indoor dojo
2. Repaint dojo wall
3. Repanel wooden floor border
4. Hang new Shingaku sign on Torii
5. Clean Ofudosan sculpture
6. Install new lanterns
7. Pour concrete foundation for new outdoor shrine

Also the July Goma was very successful and I think all guests throughly enjoyed it. Please consider to attend the special goma on Sept 12 with Rev Tanaka.

Posted in news | Leave a comment

Special Guests for July Goma

The July Ceremony will be on Saturday July 30th at 6:30 pm and will include two very special guests.

Mr Adam Bradley san our temple carpenter will be out for his annual visit doing some new construction on the temple grounds. He will be installing a special calligraphy that Tanaka Sensei did and Adam san carved into a wood plaque and highlighted with 24k gold leafing on the Torii main gate.

Also a good friend of mine who is the Itako-san Japanese shaman will attend. Itako is the traditional Japanese shamanic tradition passed down within families from the mountains in northern Japan. My friend learned from his grandmother. It is extremely rare to meet such a person so we are honored he can attend.

The July Goma will be the last fire ceremony before the special event with Rev. Tanaka in September. There will be no August Goma. So, please attend if you can and feel free to invite friends.

Posted in news | Leave a comment

Moments with Sensei: Profound Peace

I have decided to begin a series of short stories of time spent with my teachers. In this series I hope to recall some of my profound lessons, funny moments, and embarrasing realizations as a student!

Memoirs of moments with Sensei 1: The most profound peace

It was a crisp October day in Vermont in 1998 and I was visiting Tanaka Sensei. When I met Sensei in 1997, he was living for the summer months on a 70 acre old farm house in rural Vermont that he had adapted to a temple. The house was complete with a kitchen table that had been sawed down so that guests could sit on the floor Japanese style. I recall only seeing one chair in the entire house which, not surprisingly, seemed to be more decorative than practical as it was never used.

One of the highlights of being in Vermont in the fall is the spectacular changing colors of the mountain foliage. One side of Sensei’s house faced the mountains and the other faced a huge open field.
It was mid to late afternoon (my memory has become a bit fuzzy) before dinner and Sensei, Mrs. Tanaka, and myself were sitting on the floor in the guest room having green tea looking out over the field. This room had sliding glass doors and gave us a spectacular view. Green tea is almost sacred in Japan and is a nectar of relaxation and peace so to this day when I sip on hot Sencha green tea, I am transported to a place of gratitude and peace.

In those days most of our interactions consisted of me asking silly intellectual questions about spirituality and much to my dismay, Sensei retorting with questions of his own about how school was, how my sister is doing, if my mom is healthy, and how we would all wear neckties if Bill Clinton san visited his temple.

At some point, Sensei and Mrs. Tanaka began to quietly sing a Japanese children’s song that began “Aki no yuu hi ni…” I did not know the meaning of this song however I listened as they sang while sipping tea and gazing out over the orange hues of the sun beginning to set captivated by the rainbow of colors that covered the trees in the field. At that moment, I was both gently nudged and fully shaken into nakaima the center of now..completely in the present moment. It was the most profound feeling of complete and magical peace I had ever experienced and remains so to this day.

After the singing was finished, I asked Sensei about the meaning of the song. Turns out it was about how the mountain wears a kimono in the fall as the leaves change. I remember thinking how our American nursery rhymes have children falling off trees in their cradles where this Japanese tune spoke of the mystery and beauty of nature. But that is a hallmark of Japanese culture – a perfect intermingling of the modern world and the wonder of nature.

I think often about that moment. And it’s likely Sensei doesn’t recall it at all which I think it so interesting – how what is just another moment in a teacher’s life can be such a powerful crystallized moment for a student. And it’s those moments that help us realize just how powerful, wonderful, and fully actualized an ascended master’s life truly is.

Posted in news | Leave a comment

Shinto thinking about the role of mother

On mother’s day 2011, the following was written by Rev. Koichi Barrish who is my Shinto teacher. I thought everyone would enjoy this perspective. Note that the line he refers to as the first line of “Oharahi no Kotoba” is also chanted in front of the shrine before the Goma. Oharahi no Kotoba refers to the most important Shinto prayer and it tells the story of how Okamisama (the Divine) interact with Mankind.

Please enjoy Barrish Sensei’s article.

Hello everyone,


The 1st words of Oharahi-no-Kotoba: Takamanoharani…………….

Taka means the big-bang and the energy source for the entire Universe

Mano is the place from which all life energy radiates from the breath of Okami

Hara is the Mother’s womb and the place where the infinite is created out of the finite.

The Basic of Shinto is the relationship between Mother and Child is the foundation for life and prosperity

Today is Satsuki Hatsuka/ the 8th day of May….may I say HAPPY MOTHERS DAY to everyone…..In Shinto thinking AMATERASUOMIKAMI (Kami of the Sun) ultimately relates to Mother of us all………(meaning all things in Nature, created within the Ki of the Kami)…from Amaterasu Omikami then to other Kami, then ancestors and finally through the hard work and love of our direct Mothers we could receive the precious gift of our lives. How can we repay this great gift— only by doing our utmost in the present moment to pass the healthiest world and society to future generations.

Kototama meaning of HAHA (Mother) is Origin of the Universe, the Mother’s womb, the Mother of Substance, the Mother of Heart. The relationship of Mother and Child is the Foundation of Prosperity. The Child born to Mother takes over the Mission of the Kami and passes it down to successive generations — keishin suso.

Within divine Nature all things are based on the relationship of Mother and Child. this would include Human Beings as Children of the Sun, Kami and ancestors, this also includes fields and valleys as children of the mountain and of course children…..

Oharahi-no-Kotoba: Haha to ko to Okaseru tsumi=

if one willfully ignores the relationship between Mother and Child as the foundation for prosperity one will loose everything in the resulting impurity. There is a tie between Mother and Child. Mountains in the position of Mother stand guard over the great land, growing trees and plants and adjusting the weather patterns and air currents and protecting the sacred field as a Mother protects her Children. Fields prosper, life prospers and flourishes in peace and harmony. However if Mountains are destroyed and trees cut down indiscriminately the balanced role of Mother/Child will perish. The result is rainstorms and floods as coordination of weather and air currents are broken. The balance of Mother Nature will become broken, harvests will fail and Mother and Child will ultimately perish. If humans destroy the mysterious and precious balanced relationships of Divine Nature they will be destroyed as well.

At first we are sensitive to impurity/ tsumi and reluctant to violate Nature.. however over time people become motivated by greed and unconscious of impurity. This leads to aggressive destruction of the environment without any guilt or remorse. When humans become accustomed to committing evil deeds they create a process that spreads horizontally and vertically accumulating tsumi/kegare and damaging the foundation and meaning of Life.

Alternatively we must as caring Children of Mother Nature we must do our utmost each day to honor the generative forces of Nature and all Divine Creation. Also, shall we do our utmost each day in every way to straighten the current situation and also pray Oharahi-no-Kotoba before the Ofuda of Sarutahiko Okami and Ame-no-Uzume-no-Mikoto, the Main Kamis of Tsubaki Grand Shrine and it’s bunshya/branch shrine: Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America.

Sarutahiko Okami is the ancestor of all Earthly Kami and Great Kami of Ki and positive movement in harmony with Divine Nature.

His wife AmenoUzumenoMikoto is kami of divine female power, arts and entertainment, meditation and joy.

We should realize that the time of childhood is of pivotal. Yamamoto Yukiyasu Guuji teaches us that parents should teach very well 3 things before children enter school ..
1) Seire Seiton= importance of cleaning everything and making everything tidy (straightened).
2) Rei-gi saho= good manners– for example: sincere cheerful greetings, leading to ..
3) good communication with people….. really caring for the comfort of others and healthy communication……thank you, hello etc…..
this is a great example of the profound simplicity of Shinto thinking.
HAPPY MOTHERS DAY to everyone.

Rev. K. Barrish
America Tsubaki Okami Yashiro Kannushi

Posted in news | Leave a comment

Upcoming Goma in VT

Dr. Orest Pelenchaty is a friend of our temple and a long time practicing Buddhist. He runs an organization all Odhayana Kondroling in Benson VT. ( Dr. Pelenchaty has invited us to perform Goma in May and was kind enough to write a blog article for us.

Goma is the Japanese Buddhist version of the ancient Indo-Persian fire sacrifice ritual. In keeping with our very eclectic mission at Odhyana Kandroling Foundation, we have invited Fudosan Kongo-Ji (I don’t use my name on the site or in the blog because I am often googled by business clients) to help us dedicate a Nature Spirit Sanctuary.

We already are developing a Bee Sanctuary and also a Healing Plants Sanctuary and a Wildlife Corridor Reforestration Project. Our founding members have a strong
base in Pranic Healing and Rei Ki and allied arts. The land has been seriously prepped with innovative Bio-Dynamic farming techniques. In this time of planetary crisis we are “calling all angels” in support of Earth healing!

We at OKF maintain an ongoing tradition of relating to fire in sacred and meditative ways

Whether it is in the more mundane way of gathering around the stove on a cold Vermont night or the regular lighting of votive candles on the Buddhist shrine or appreciating good company around a campfire under the infinite starfields. We have also had numerous occasions when visiting lamas performed fire ceremonies, whether it was the famous Mountain of Burnt Offerings ( Riwo Sang Cho in Tibetan) or the sumptuously elaborated fire puja of Vajrapani ( Bodhisattva of Enlightened Power) or the simpler regular smoke offerings we do for the protective deities and to bless the environs. We also make use of incense to raise the vibration for meditation, smudging to purify the living space, and moxibustion to bolster the Ki ( prana) of patients seeking healing.

The homa rite can be traced back through ancient Brahmanic practices to the central Asian steppe cultures. Recent discoveries at Gonor Tepeh show clear evidence of temple complexes dedicated to the offering of the Soma elixir as a sacrifice to Agni, the deity of Fire. This is the origin of ceremonies at the heart of both Zoroastrian ( Persian) and Vedic ( classical Indian) religions. One can safely suppose that the lines of such visionary activities go back to much earlier times when humans were keenly aware of the raw power of Nature and respected the Elemental energies forming and enlivening our universe.

All indigenous and most ‘classical’ cultures have some recorded version of a spiritual/religious/magical role for burnt offerings. In the Mahayana (the Greater Vehicle of Buddhism) one seeks to develop service for others’ by focusing on engaged “skillful means”. Based on universal altruism , the Tantrayana ( Esoteric Vehicle of Buddhism) incorporates many techniques for accelerating spiritual evolution while simultaneously helping relieve suffering for many beings along our way to the goal of enlightenment. One such yogic doorway is working via any of the archetypal Elements. Here we touch on the very beautiful ceremonial method of relating to sacred energies thru working with Fire, called Goma. Such methods are very shamanic and the blessing waves of pure intent and loving energy generated in such a way radiate across the universe and the positive karma is dedicated for the welfare of everyone everywhere.

So we are pleased to have Rev. Tanaka’s North American disciple coming to visit on Sunday May 22nd to perform a Goma to inaugurate Vermont’s first Nature Spirit Sanctuary. Thus we are bringing a powerful ancient tradition to assist us in harmonizing with Nature and the Elements in the 21st century in our corner of Turlte Island.

May all beings benefit.

Posted in news | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

3 Year Anniversary | Atlanta | Northern California

Greetings everyone,
Today we finished our 3 year apple anniversary goma! It was unique because we had all women in attendance except, of course, for Tyrone our Goma dog. The weather was stunningly perfect and one guest reported that the wind blew in two different directions simultaneously.Thanks to the work of Maryanne Davis, we were able to capture some really nice images. Please enjoy them below.

Also in other big news, we will do a Goma in Atlanta on Nov 7th. Our temple carpenter, Adam Bradley san, has also invited us to conduct one for his Aikido Dojo in Northern California. And we received a very nice invitation to do one next spring in Vermont as well. So, very exciting developments!

Posted in news | Leave a comment

It’s been three years

Our three year anniversary Goma will be Thursday October 28th. The October Goma is my favorite of the year for several reasons:

1. The foliage is beautiful
2. The air is cool and crisp
3. Apple Cider!
4. It’s our anniversary
5. The veil between the physical and non physical worlds is very thin around Halloween

Please consider joining us and please do tell your friends.

Three years ago we performed the first public Goma with a small group of friends around a campfire. Please see for pictures of then and now. It is truly amazing how much has changed in three short years.

Atlanta, GA:

Our friend in Atlanta will be hosting a Goma on Sunday, November 7th. If you are in the Atlanta area, please contact me as we would love for you to attend.

Posted in news | Leave a comment


On Saturday September 11th, my teacher, Rev. Jomyo Tanaka will be at our Goma. This is a very special event as this is Rev. Tanaka’s first visit to CT from Japan.

This is a don’t miss event…please do your best to join us.

Contact for more info

Posted in news | Leave a comment

Major Construction Work Completed!

Mr. Adam Bradley of Madera Sculptures, our temple carpenter, just completed construction of our new Torii gate. Over the past 9 days, we completed 3 major projects. The attached pictures are of the finished projects.

Completion of the Fudo Myoo housing Structure: We dug the structure into the ground, completed a new border, and filled with new white marble

Construction of the Tamagaki Shrine Fence: Adam san constructed a traditional tamagaki fence to surround the shrine. Each premium white pine slat had to be cut at the exact prescribed angle and this project took a full 5 days. The posts were constructed from Douglas Fir.

Construction of Torii Gate: This is the project we are most excited about. We found the perfect sacred tree and made the special offering before cutting. The tree was a standing dead tree with beautiful turquoise lichens growing on the bark. We had to build to precise specifications and we hit several snags and Adam san had to rework the design. Ultimately we chose the more rustic Kuroki style Torii. The Nuki lower cross beam, was hand milled by Adam san from the same tree. Later we will build the more elegant Myojin style Torii.

Posted in news | Leave a comment