History  //  Brief history of PL Kyodan

Spiritual Leaders

The following is a brief history of the founding fathers of the Church of Perfect Liberty.

Tokumitsu Kanada: the Spiritual Father (1863-1919)

Tokumitsu Kanada

The predecessor of the Perfect Liberty Kyodan (Church of Perfect Liberty) was Hito-no-michi (The Way of Humankind), but prior to this there was another organisation. This was the teaching of Tokumitsu Kanada, who we call the Spiritual Father of PL.

Reverend Kanada, who was born with an extraordinary psychic ability, had a great reverence and affection for Kukai (a famous and well-loved Buddhist priest who lived from 774 to 835). Ever since Reverend Kanada was very young he followed Kukai’s teachings by doing many types of hard training. He finally reached enlightenment of the truth of his teachings and established his own religious organisation about 1916. He predicted that after his death, the eighteen precepts he had received from God, would become twenty-one to create a complete and true religion. Tokumitsu Kanada passed away on January 4, 1919.

Top Tokuharu Miki: First Founder (1871-1938)

The First Founder, Tokuharu Miki, was a Zen Buddhist priest of the Obaku Sect.

In 1912 he met Tokumitsu Kanada, who instantly cured his chronic asthma by the Sacred Rite of Ofurikae (the power to temporarily cure illnesses). Tokuharu Miki was so impressed by this miracle, as well as by Reverend Kanada’s pure humble personality and profound teachings, that he decided to become his disciple. In 1916 he gave up his Buddhism, which had required many years of hard training, to become one of his disciples.

Tokuharu Miki

Before Tokumitsu Kanada’s untimely death, Tokuharu Miki received a will from him saying:

“Please plant a sakaki tree (cleyera japonica) at the place where I die and protect it as a Himorogi (sacred tree). By doing this, you will meet a person with Makoto (heart and sincerity) who will complete my teachings.”

After Tokumitsu Kanada died, Tokuharu Miki followed his will and planted a sakaki tree as a Himorogi in the place that Tokumitsu Kanada ended his life. After protecting this Himorogi for five years, visiting the site each day to pray and look after it, Tokuharu Miki himself received three more sacred precepts that God revealed to him that completed the teachings. He finally reached enlightenment in 1924, and established a new religious organisation under a Shinto sect, which was a requirement at that time. Then, in 1931, he renamed it Hito-no-michi (The Way of Humankind) and established it as an independent religion, which he was then able to do.

Hito-no-michi’s teachings spread rapidly throughout Japan, Korea, China and to other Southeast Asia countries and the members quickly grew to over one million. However, the military government hated this fast growing organisation and started suppressing it on September 28, 1936, the day after the ceremony for the succession of the second Oshieoya-sama.

Then, in April of 1937, Hito-no-michi was ordered to be disbanded. The First Founder was arrested by the military police, tortured and given little food. His body became so weak that he was temporarily released. During the persecution of Hito-no-michi, on July 6, 1938, the First Founder passed away.

Top Tokuchika Miki: Second Founder (1900-1983)

The First Founder, Tokuharu Miki, was a Zen Buddhist priest of the Obaku Sect.

The Second Founder, Tokuchika Miki, was born April 8, 1900, in the Anrakuji Temple. April 8 was a particularly significant date because it was also the birth date of Buddha.

At 16 years of age, he became a minister of Reverend Tokumitsu Kanada’s religious organisation.

On September 27, 1936, a festival was held to celebrate Tokuchika Miki being named as the Second Founder to succeed his father.

On May 20th, 1945, the Second Founder was imprisoned by the military authorities because of an unjust accusation of lese majesty (treason — disrespect to the Emperor). However, after the end of the Pacific War his innocence was proven, the crime of lese majesty was abolished and he emerged from prison a free man.

Tokuchika Miki

The following year, on September 29, 1946, he established PL in Tosu City, Saga Prefecture, in response to the enthusiasm of the Hito-no-michi members, and declared the truth, Life Is Art.

One year after the establishment of PL, the Second Founder received the “Twenty-one PL Precepts” from God. These twenty-one PL Precepts form the foundation of the religious beliefs of the PL teachings, clearly showing the best way to live as human beings in this era.

The Second Founder worked hard for religious cooperation. He organised and chaired the Federation of New Religious Organisations of Japan for many years. The Ministry of Education also appointed him to their Religious Juridical Person’s Council. Three times he visited the Vatican meeting with both Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II to talk about moving toward world peace.

In 1953, the building of the PL Headquarters started in Tondabayashi, in the Osaka Prefecture. Then, in May of 1958, the Second Founder received and revealed the sacred word “Oyashikiri” and the sacred “Oyashikiri Prayer” that concentrates all the energy of PL to save people.

The Second Founder broadened the PL activities to include school education; family education; science areas including: biology, medicine, and computers; the arts including: poetry writing, painting, music, movies, dancing, the tea ceremony and flower arrangement; and finally, sports and publishing.

Then in 1970, he supervised the building the PL Peace Tower, a 180 metre (590 feet) high non-sectarian monument, for world peace, dedicated to all those from the beginning of human history who have died in war.

On February 2, 1983, at eighty-two years of age, the Second Founder passed away thus closing the life of a great religious leader.

Top Takahito Miki: Third Founder (1957- )

Immediately, after the death of the Second Founder, in February 1983, Takahito Miki succeeded as the Third Founder to continue teaching the absolute truth.

Since PL has an Oshieoya who is appropriate for each generation, this person is referred to as a Founder for that generation. For instance, the present Oshieoya is referred to as the Third Founder of PL. This is a unique quality of the PL religion.

Takahito Miki

Takahito Miki demonstrated his intelligence and high state of mind from a young age. When he was only 12 years old, along with many university graduates he tried one of the most difficult national computer programming exams and passed. He continues to show us the joy of practicing the “way for human beings” in daily life.

Besides explaining the teachings for each era, Oshieoya also does a special oath to God for all members who pray sincerely to reach God.

The beauty of these teachings must be experienced by practising them. There is nothing to lose and a great deal to gain.