“Everywhere we look in daily life there are Pilgrims all around us; heroic souls who strive to be free, and are willing to undertake great sacrifice that others may also be free.”
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Divine Mother Audrey’s Message
On October 3, l863, President Lincoln proclaimed Thanksgiving Day a national holiday, to be observed on the last Thursday of November. In l94l Congress adopted a joint resolution confirming the fourth Thursday of November, as Thanksgiving Day.
Thanksgiving is an American holiday which usually brings to mind a day to get together with friends and family. Over the years, the focus has been to prepare the traditional roast turkey and pumpkin pie with all the trimmings and to catch the football season on television.
Many people have a vague recollection that this holiday started with the Pilgrims, but have forgotten the beautiful history behind this celebration. It is a story of human struggle, courage, and a commitment to the freedom to practice one’s faith against great odds. The story carries timeless application for us today, as we recall with deep gratitude in our hearts the great love and sacrifice of others that paved the way for us.
Religion in England was woven into the monarchy as a way to unify the people, and to command their loyalty. When Queen Elizabeth I ascended to the throne in l558, she was determined to enforce one Protestant religion. She passed an Act of Uniformity which compelled the clergy to adhere strictly to the detailed forms of worship set forth in the Book of Common Prayer. A group of Puritans known as Independents began to oppose the Church of England. They found the detailed forms of worship in the Book of Common Prayer repugnant, and they sought to worship in their own way.
Some Independents, called Separatists, began to hold their own private worship, and stayed away from the church. By forming these separate congregations, the Puritans made themselves subject to persecution, and Parliament forbade them to hold their own services.
When James I ascended to the throne in l603, he made it clear that he opposed the Puritans. He considered their disagreement of his leadership of the Church of England seditious. He strengthened the Court of High Commission to punish Puritans who wanted to make reforms. As persecution of the Puritans intensified, they escaped to Holland, eventually settling in Leyden.
The Puritans began to hear glowing accounts of North American settlements. A pioneer English colony in North America had been founded at Jamestown. Life in Leyden was difficult. Work was not easy to find, and they had not been able to escape from religious strife. Leyden was also a potential battlefield as a twelve year truce between Holland and Spain was to end in l92l. The Pilgrim Fathers decided to go to America. They were hopeful of having the freedom to worship in their new homeland.
The Leyden Pilgrims boarded the Mayflower and sailed for North America, eventually landing at New Plymouth, where they established a settlement. Nearly half of the Pilgrims died from the harsh New England winter, disease, and scurvy. The Wampanoag Indians were friendly to the Pilgrims, and taught them how to plant corn, and showed them how to harvest fish and other commodities of the land. The first harvest in a new land was bountiful, and a day of thanksgiving was set aside. The Pilgrims were joined by the Indians in three days of festivities, and the first thanksgiving in American history was celebrated.
The Pilgrims wanted to thank God for His bounty. Notwithstanding all of their suffering, they never lost their faith in God, and their strong spiritual life was instrumental in seeing them through their hardships. Over the years, more settlers arrived from England to escape the continuing anti-Puritan policies of the monarchy.
Samuel Eliot Morison, wrote in The Pilgrim Fathers, Their Significance In History, that the story of the Pilgrims was a “story of their patience and fortitude, and the workings of the unseen force which bears up heroic souls in the doing of mighty errands, as often as is read or told, quickens the spiritual forces in American life, strengthens faith in God, and confidence in human nature...And the key to that story, the vital factor in this little group, is the faith in God that exalted them and their small enterprise to something of lasting value and enduring interest.”
The cornerstone of truly great achievement rests in God, and the inner peace that one can find when the heart and mind reposes in Him, no matter what the trying circumstances in life may be. As the Pilgrims thanked God for His goodness though they suffered, so too, may we thank God for the experiences that we must experience to evolve and grow in greater strength spiritually. Let every day be a day of thanksgiving to God. Everywhere we look in daily life there are Pilgrims all around us; heroic souls who strive to be free, and are willing to undertake great sacrifice that others may also be free.
History is replete with horrific persecutions in the name of religion. We are fortunate that in our American history the freedom of religion is guaranteed by the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States which sets forth that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...”
I remember Divine Mother in my heart always, and I recall how she used to say that America was founded on freedom of religion. She could see the inherent wisdom in allowing a nation’s citizenry the right to worship God in ways that rang true in their hearts. She saw the beauty in the ability of each person to realize his or her potential to the fullest, and she often said that the greatest love that one can give is freedom. We can never experience true freedom at the oppression of others, for we are all connected to each other, and to oppress others is to oppress ourselves.
Sri Ramakrishna said, “I have practiced all religions—Hinduism, Islam, Christianity—and I have found that it is the same God toward whom all are directing their steps, though along different paths...Whenever I look, I see men quarrelling in the name of religion—Hindus, Mohammedans, Brahmos, Vaishnavas, and the rest. But they never reflect that He who is called Krishna is also called Siva, and bears the name of the Primal Energy, Jesus and Allah as well—the same Rama with a thousand names. A lake has several ghats. At one the Hindus take water in pitchers and call it ‘jal’ at another the Mussalmans take water in leather bags and call it ‘pani’ at a third the Christians call it ‘water.’ Can we imagine that it is not ‘jal’ but only ‘pani’ or ‘water?’ The substance is One under different names, and everyone is seeking the same substance; only climate, temperament, and name create differences. Let each man follow his own path. If he sincerely and ardently wishes to know God, peace be unto him! He will surely realize Him...If people feel sincere longing, they will find that all paths lead to God.”
I thank Divine Mother for awakening my spiritual consciousness, and for making God come alive in my heart. I remember her life spent in her humble kitchen, serving an endless stream of people who sought to be with her, and experience her powerful transmissions. Divine Mother wrote to me on October 27, 1973, “When one loves the Lord, he knows God is all in all, and that God is perfect harmony, love, joy and abundance, and that God is the only power. Attach the mind to God and work. Everything belongs to Him. He is infinite love...Let God be the Doer. He is the Creator and the Destroyer, and as we hold His hand and work in the early stages of spiritual unfoldment we will get strength and comfort, the anxieties will gradually disappear. Try to love God first before anything else. His life is in you the closest of all. Keep on thanking Him. He is running the universe.”
How I love the deep respect that Sri Ramakrishna and Divine Mother had for each person’s sacred journey back to the Godself. They lived in that transcendent state of pure Spirit in which religions do not exist, and yet is the wellspring from which all religions are born.
There is great joy in each person’s spiritual evolvement, and I have been privileged to see incredible growth taking place throughout the spiritual family. I am happy to see these courageous souls go for their true freedom which can only be found in God realization. Along the way, I am touched by these grateful hearts who praise God, and I am happy to share with you their beautiful thanksgiving in this issue. May the joy of this holiday and everyday be magnified in our hearts with deep gratefulness and devotion to the One Great God. Happy Thanksgiving to all!
Words of Thanksgiving from the Spiritual Family
Thank you so much Sri Ramakrishna, Divine Mother, Divine Mother Audrey and the spiritual family for bringing me home to God. Divine Mother Audrey, you who keep this spiritual path alive, shining brightly, so true and overflowing with Love...I am so grateful that I am for the first time really getting to know my Godself within me...that I am learning the meaning of God’s unconditional Love and I am beginning to give this love out to my husband, my children and family...that I can now be a better wife, mother, daughter, sister and friend. I no longer feel lonely, but I feel so fulfilled, so loved, so complete and at peace, for this I am grateful. Denise Yota
I will always be grateful to Divine Mother Audrey for guiding me to God’s unconditional Love and peace, and for the awareness that God is in my heart...Thank you for helping me to see the good in everything, and that all of our experiences are for our spiritual evolvement. Bob Meagher
Ten years ago when I was in Boston, Divine Mother asked me to visit Swami Sarvagatananda...When I asked Swami if I could do anything for him when I returned to Hawaii, he said, “Serve your Spiritual Mother.” To my deep regret I did not follow through, and I am grateful that I have a second chance now to serve Divine Mother by serving Divine Mother Audrey. Elizabeth Kunimoto Divine Mother Audrey, thank you for my experience of seeing Divine Mother’s Light which you will be taking to the world. Tadashi Kunimoto
I thank God for bringing Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey into my life. Through their infinite Love and guidance, I am realizing and experiencing the perfection of Oneness in Spirit everyday; the immeasurable differences between human and spiritual love; the deep joy of unconditional sharing and giving; the significance of being purified of the “junks” in our hearts to evolve...God has given me new spiritual life filled with so much joy I never dreamed possible. James Tamashiro
I am grateful to Divine Mother for making me realize that my soul is perfect and that God loves me just the way I am. Jan Tamashiro
Before I met Divine Mother, I worried a lot about my children. How are they? Are they alright? How are we to send them to college? Constantly worrying. Divine Mother took that away by telling me not to worry, they are in better hands than mine; in God’s hands. From that day on I could not worry about my children—actually, God’s children. Gerald Nakamura
Through God’s grace, I am blessed with love and happiness. Thank you Divine Mother for the lovely mantra, I am so grateful to God. Nellie Taise
I am so grateful for Divine Mother. I don’t know where I would be if I didn’t meet her. She has saved my soul. Now everything is simple and worthwhile. God is the Doer, not me. Linda Livingston
I am very grateful for the awareness of God in my life, being able to experience God in my everyday life, and to realize the Divinity within ourselves. Through the grace of God, I am able to touch and share my feelings. Through the guidance of God, life is so beautiful because now I look at things, good or bad, with a spiritual eye, and whatever my experiences, it all comes from God. Praise God! Leslie Shimabukuro
I am so grateful to Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey for changing me from an empty, needy, big time enabler to a strong, fulfilled, blissfully happy child of God. Elaine Ogata
Thank you, Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey, for opening my eyes to the spiritual beauty of life’s experiences. Edith Sakai
Thank You, God, we are so grateful to experience peace and joy. Tom Taise
I would like to express my deep gratitude for having received nothing short of the highest Love and grace from God this past year. In March, after two miscarriages, I gave birth to a healthy, happy, beautiful, baby girl. I felt the loving presence of Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey in my heart throughout these experiences. I thank them for giving me the Love, the focus, the strength, the courage, and most of all the knowing in my heart, that every experience is from God for my spiritual evolvement. Cathy Oda
I am most grateful to God for Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey who guide me always to God on this path of love and devotion. Joyce Volen
Through Divine Mother’s grace and Divine Mother Audrey’s Love, I have witnessed and experienced the transformation of the heart. This Love that has been freely given to me, has opened up the closed, claustrophobic, and confused world that I once lived in. It has freed me and my family from the dysfunctional chains that kept us ignorantly hurting each other and ourselves, and with each day, the task of facing and finding myself, helps me grow in compassion and understanding of others. These are the true miracles of life. Lane Nakamura
Before joining the spiritual family, I was spending so much of my time looking for happiness on the outside or blaming others, like my husband, for making me miserable. I now know that happiness comes from within, from knowing ourselves and following our Godselves. This is the most precious awareness that has really changed my life. I am so grateful for all the grace that God has shown me by leading me to such a beautiful path. Teri Koyanagi
Over the past year since I have been coming to Friday meditation and the spiritual intensives, I have felt my life change. It’s been a true awareness of having God in my life completely. This is what I am truly grateful for. John Tsukahira
I am grateful for Divine Mother’s Love which you showed me once has no beginning and no end...others say I am more calm and peaceful inside, perhaps it’s because I am more accepting of what life holds for me. I know it is always God’s grace. Helen Kaprielian
Praise God for the realization that I am not alone. God’s grace and Love are shining on all of us, and there is no room for fear. Harriet Itoman
To experience and witness God everyday brings so much happiness...as I find my Godself, there is courage, freedom and joy within to just be me. I am so happy. Donna Kusumoto
I am most grateful for this life that God has given me because in this life I met Divine Mother and was given the Mantra...my life has totally changed and I am finding myself. Todd Loomis
I am grateful to Divine Mother for being an example of God’s Love and for sharing how we too have God’s infinite Love within us. I’m grateful for the precious mantra I received to help me find my true Self. Andrew Tamashiro
Through God’s grace my life has changed...Once I was so shut down and now I can share and express my feelings to my family and others... Each day I thank God for the love and grace that I have received so abundantly. Dale Tamashiro
I am grateful for the realization that the path to our happiness is loving God and following our hearts in daily life, for that is our spiritual connection to God. Amy Asato
I am grateful to God for His grace that brought Divine Mother into our lives. I thank God for unconditional Love and Light that touched this heart to realize that God is within all of us...Our spiritual revelations have grown to new heights and are truly getting better and better. Myrna Nakamura
Through Divine Mother’s grace you changed my life! It’s truly a miracle how you’ve changed my spiritual consciousness without any effort on my part. I’ve never been happier, and feel so free and peaceful, and finding my Godself is such a blessing. I am so grateful to God! Cheryl Asato
I am so grateful to find God within. Whatever we do, good or bad, it’s all God’s grace. Edie Shimabukuro
I am so grateful to God for bringing Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey into my life...You have touched my heart in a way that I can’t describe in words, and I will never forget how you touched my life. Bobby Tamashiro
Before I met Divine Mother I suffered from regular cycles of depression and suicidal thoughts. I didn’t know who I was, what I wanted or why I was alive. I looked outside of myself to everyone else for the answers and direction I craved. Thanks to Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey, I am learning to go inward, face myself and listen to God’s divine wisdom within my heart. Laurie Moore
Divine Mother opened my eyes to the beauty...that is God’s Love...Feeling the tremendous Love of God inspires me to cultivate my love and devotion to God. Through this practice, I am experiencing God’s joy in giving out, sharing His Love and feeling the oneness with all. Dwight Oda
I am grateful for Divine Mother’s Light at the end of the tunnel and Divine Mother Audrey’s Light guiding us within the tunnel. For me, the tunnel is my most difficult experiences such as learning to respect myself vis-a-vis my mom and others or cutting attachments...sometimes the tunnel seems pretty bleak...Thank God for the Light and the spiritual perspectives that totally transform each experience. Tatou Mehta
I was 4 years old when I first met Divine Mother. I had no idea who she was, except that she knew me better than my own mother did. My mother was on the verge of a nervous breakdown; she was extremely unstable and my parents were headed for a divorce. Unlike my parents who were unavailable emotionally, Divine Mother was totally present and made me feel like I was the most special child in the whole world. Sometimes when I felt depressed or sad I would call her and she would take time out from her busy schedule to listen to my small problems. She would tell me to hold on to God, He would never forsake me. Susie Nakao
I am so grateful that God has brought Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey into my life. I came to this path as a tormented, deeply depressed, broken soul searching for answers. Since I met Divine Mother Audrey, I have been given non-stop Love, more blessings than I can count, and grace that keeps transforming me, my husband, my children and those around me daily...I am grateful for the tools to find and love my Godself. Casey Herrera
I have been fortunate to experience and witness what Divine Mother Audrey has said many times before, “The true miracle is the changing of the consciousness.” Kathy Anzai
I am so thankful and praise God for Divine Mother Audrey on the move, taking Divine Mother’s Light out to the world, and so thankful also to be witness at this most significant and exciting time. Fran Kawamura
Thank you Divine Mother for Divine Mother Audrey and her Love and guidance through the many beautiful experiences that has helped me to find and respect my true self. Debbie Nakano
Thank you Divine Mother for transforming my life. Sheri Mayo
I am grateful for the experience of the greatest love, God’s Love. Thank you. Mary Farkash
Praise God for the precious opportunity of finding my path home to You. Karen Harimoto
Thank you Divine Mother Audrey, for letting me experience Divine Mother’s unconditional Love for me each time I meditate with you. I treasure it most dear, and cannot forget that special day when I was in such despair to be given this special love from God, which transformed my heart to ecstasy...I have never been happier and never dreamt that this was possible, and I now have no regrets of the life I had because it led me to Divine Mother. Ted Kanamori
I am grateful to Divine Mother Audrey that our family is on the spiritual path and that we are becoming closer. Clyde Higuchi
I am thankful for Divine Mother, Divine Mother Audrey, the spiritual family, and all their love. Lynne Calvet
The one thing I am very thankful for is Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey being in my life. I am so grateful for their many sacrifices, all the continuous unconditional Love, guidance and the precious personalized attention I have received. They have given me the inner strength and courage to face my worst fears and see them as beautiful spiritual experiences. From God’s grace, I have been able to find my Godself, follow my heart and become truly happy! Thank You God, for all that I have and all that I am. Joni Tamashiro
I’ve been so blessed to have met Divine Mother and to receive the mantra at such a young age, and to receive such personalized attention from Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey for so many years. Thank you so much for always taking me back to my Godself, and completely transforming my life along the way. I am so fortunate and grateful. Nolan Tamashiro
Thank you for restoring my happy childhood to me. John Christianson
Thank you Divine Mother Audrey for the unfoldment of courage, self-respect and dignity in my life, all through the grace of Divine Mother and the revelation that She is the Doer. Duffy Kwock
I am thankful for the miraculous changes that have occurred to me through the grace of Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey. I am happy, I respect myself, I have confidence, I feel more genuine because I express my feelings, and I smile all the time with the joy of God’s Love within me. The many intensives and the (August) celebration have transformed my heart and I am a completely different person now...God has graced my family and spiritual family with the various beautiful experiences in the realization of God within. It has made both my families the most intimate, loving and safest place on this earth. Lloyd Nakamura, Jr.
I’m so thankful for Divine Mother, Divine Mother Audrey, the spiritual family, the intensives, respecting myself and experiencing God’s unconditional Love. Ida Evans
The chain of abuse and dysfunction has been broken only through God’s unconditional Love and guidance. The pain and sorrow in my heart that was once there because of my dysfunctional past have been lifted and there is now so much love. I now have so much more love to give. Thank you! Lanae Maeda
From the very beginning, Divine Mother gave me everything. She opened my heart and awakened my soul explaining very clearly what this path and my life was all about. I am very grateful and honored to be on this path and to Divine Mother, who found me. Gary Maeda
Divine Mother Audrey, you have shown me that God exists and more important that God exists within each of us. You are the one responsible for changing my spiritual awareness, for which I am eternally grateful. Thank you. Gene Kusumoto
Thank You, God, for granting me a wonderful new life, a beautiful spiritual family, the opportunity to be in Your presence, and Your infinite and personal Love that has given me new joy and direction. Sarah Christianson
Praise God for the tremendous evolvement of the three generations of our family through Divine Mother’s grace. Roberta Christianson
I had always felt a gnawing feeling of being frozen in time emotionally as a preteen while my body aged chronologically. Although I am married and have three children, my emotional state was unstable and my reactions were childlike...I found the courage to face the deeply embedded, painful childhood experience...It was truly God’s amazing grace and unconditional Love that purified, healed, and restored my life. I am eternally grateful to God for giving me my life back. Mae Nakao
My life is a miracle. Looking back it has been only six years since I was addicted to marijuana and using cocaine regularly...I now have a wonderful marriage, two beautiful children, a teaching career, and I am drug free and debt free. This is all Divine Mother’s grace. Thank You, Lord. Randy Serizawa
So much has happened to me since meeting Divine Mother...I no longer live in fear, and I am never lonely...I have become more open and able to share with others from my heart...It gives me great joy to touch someone else by sharing my experiences. Phil Norris
I have been truly graced and blessed with so much Love from Divine Mother, who literally gave me my life back. A life with more clarity and spiritual awareness. My heart is overflowing with joyfulness and thankfulness to God. Becky Nakamura
After meditating at my first meeting with Divine Mother, she took me outside and said, “Look, everything has changed now!” The dramatic changes in my once angry and self-centered behavior are due to Divine Mother’s grace alone. Jim Petroff
Praise God for all of the grace! I’d like to thank Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey for opening my heart to God consciousness and for continuing to guide me back to my Godself. Jeanne Petroff
Divine Mother has reached out to me and my family, opened my heart and filled me with God’s unconditional Love, giving me the courage to do the self-examination, look inside, and face what’s there so I can begin to know myself and give out. Ken Johnson
I am grateful to Divine Mother Audrey for the Love and energy she has expended in guiding my family and me back to ourselves. I am grateful for the opportunity to repent for all the pain I had caused my wife, my family and friends...the family...is much more intimate, loving and truthful in our dealing with each other...I am eternally grateful to Divine Mother for opening my heart by initiating me onto this 9th Path. Lloyd Nakamura, Sr.
Since I met Divine Mother, my spiritual consciousness has been transformed. I really feel the scriptures in my heart and I live them. Thank you Divine Mother...for showing us by your example what God’s infinite Love is all about. Gloria Madamba
I give thanks everyday for Divine Mother’s Love. Not only did Divine Mother lift me up from the pits of human despair at a life gone terribly wrong, but she gave me a spiritual life and put Val and I back together in a real marriage. Since then I have personally experienced the changed consciousness which has allowed me to gain contact with my feelings and to attain a level of intimacy in my love with Val that I could never have dreamed possible. I feel the wonderful Love from Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey and know in my heart that my joyous life is entirely due to Divine Mother. Thank you Sri Ramakrishna, Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey. Peter Valentine
Meeting Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey has completely changed my perspective in life - from a schizophrenic lifestyle to one with wholehearted devotion to God. Now, I understand and love my family more and have learned through Divine Mother’s grace that everything I own, including my body, comes from God. I love you Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey very much. Jose Madamba, M.D.
Thank you, Divine Mother Audrey, for your prescriptions for me and thank you for all of my awarenesses. I take everything you say right to the heart because I know that you are telling it to me for my benefit and evolvement. For me, there aren’t really any more worries because you have taught me that everything is an experience from God, and that we have to discriminate the unreal from the Real. Thank you for showing me real Love, security, courage and truth. I am forever grateful. Joseph Madamba
After many years of feeling empty and sad, I finally found by the grace of God, someone to love and trust, and who Loves me for me. Thank you, Divine Mother and Divine Mother Audrey. Soozi Kawakami