Benediction for Gov. David Ige and Lt. Gov. Josh Green’s 2018 Inauguration

Bishop Matsumoto at podium on stage with Gov. David Ige and Lt. Gov. Josh Green and others seated on stage

December 3, 2018

Benediction for the 2018 Inauguration of the Governor and Lieutenant Governor of the State of Hawai’i

By Rev. Eric Matsumoto
Bishop, Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii

All-Inclusive Wisdom and All-Embracing Compassion/Buddha of Infinite Light and Immeasurable Life, at the conclusion of this Inauguration of our Governor, the Honorable David Yutaka Ige, and Lieutenant Governor Josh Green, illumine our hearts and minds with your Light of Wisdom and Compassion.

So, we may realize the interdependent nature of all life, all existence as shared by the metaphor of Indra’s Net. The awareness of our interconnectedness and interrelatedness may be the single most important realization needed to bring about peaceful, harmonious and collaborative progress and change. When we are not aware of our shared interdependence, “we tend to think…that our own perspective is the only one that is right and justified. This is what causes conflicts to arise.”1 It is said, from the awareness of interdependence arises a heightened respect and deep appreciation of others with a sense of responsibility for our actions because of the effect it has on others including the ’aina, our natural environment. “The weakness of our relationships with each other is…(our) thinking about ourselves more than others.”2 More than ever, let us treasure the relationships we have with each other.

Wise words always encourage us to “not be egoistic or self-willed, but…cherish feelings of good-will toward all alike; …respect those worthy of respect; …serve those who are worthy of service and treat everyone with uniform kindness.”3

Let us keep in mind that “Thousands of people may live in a community, but it is not a true community until all people know each other, trust each other and there is harmony.”4 In such organizations and such a community, we will find unity and various virtues will abound.

Perhaps more than anywhere, though we may have our variances, the people of Hawai’i, with the Spirit of Aloha, sense of Ohana, and attitude of Okagesama de and gratitude (arigatai), exhibit the qualities of a fine community. Under the leadership of the 8th Governor of the State of Hawai’i, the Honorable David Ige and his administration, with all of us respectfully working together, may our Hawai’i Nei become a shining example of a more harmonious and peaceful world by “Moving Forward Together.”

Entrusting in All-Inclusive Wisdom and All-Embracing Compassion/Namo Amida Butsu.


1 From Moving Forward Just As You Are by Monshu Kojun Ohtani, Resident Head Priest of Nishi Hongwanji, 2017, page 48

2 Ibid, page 42

3 Adapted from The Teaching of Buddha by Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai (Society for the Promotion of Buddhism), 2008, page 402

4 Ibid, page 448