Counseling, cults and Hotteeze



K (who prefers to remain anonymous) takes me to task: “You recommended Yamagishikai for organic food, but left out half the story – such as why it ‘came under pressure from a scandal-driven media’ during the murder/brainwashing peak of the Aum period. This was less a ‘scandal-driven’ problem than the fact that Yamagishikai too is a cult that, since its founding in 1958, demands members’ money, etc., before they can become ‘full’ members — one defining feature of a cult.”

K agrees that recommending organic sources is welcome information, but continues: “You owe it to readers, to inform them before sending them to a cult.”

She is surprised we didn’t include Tengu, which we’ve suggested in the past and which K has found to be both organic and reasonably priced.

As in every religion, or breakaway splinter group, there are those adherents who strive toward consciousness and those who remain unconscious as to the effects of their fundamentalist or off-the-wall beliefs and behavior on others.

I was simply saying that here was a community that in principle appeared to seeking to find a way of balancing our needs with the earth, and in turning the waste of the tofu and shoyu industry, for example, into organic compost, was enabling the community at large to eat healthy natural food.

Tengu, Radish Boya

Another reader also recommends Tengu.

They have a Web site in both Japanese and English:www.alishan-organic-center-com/en/.tengu/

“Also,” she suggests, “try Radish Boya. Since it is a Japanese company the initial paper work to become a member is in Japanese only, and may require help from somebody. Once you are a member, the weekly catalog is in Japanese but with color-pictures and references in numbers. It’s therefore very easy to order.”

Radish Boya is a little expensive but supplies top-quality organic vegetables, fruits, etc. (A box with a selection of 10 vegetables is delivered at your front-door every week.) Their Web site’s at www.radishbo-ya.co.jp/


When traveling with Japanese-made self-adhesive hot pads (“kairo”) to alleviate aches and pains or simply keep out the cold, so many people — friends, relatives, complete strangers even (curious as to why I would be slapping large plasters on my shoulders and knees) have asked where to buy them.

The answer (“for hours and hours of heat” promises the blurb) is Hotteeze, the brain child of an enterprising Australia-British couple in Tokyo. Products are now available both online and from selected outlets in the U.K., Australia and New Zealand.

There are two types: self-adhesive, portable and odorless Regular Hotteeze that last 12 hours; and foot shaping, thin, comfortable and cozy Hotteeze for Feet.

Check out the company web site at www.hotteeze.net or phone (03) 3423 9665; fax 03 5474 3135.

Kansai counseling

Jim would like to know if there are any reliable, and ideally bilingual (E&J) sources for relationship/sexual counseling in the Kansai area.

“My Japanese fiance has a serious distrust of and disbelief in counseling, so I was hoping for some recommendations of counselors that are reputed to be skilled in giving Japanese people a sense of security.”

Take a look at IMHPJ’s web site in English and Japanese: www.imhpj.org/International

Mental Health Providers Japan is a multidisciplinary professional association of therapists who provide mental health services to international communities throughout the country. There are at least two non-Japanese therapists in Osaka, and two in Kobe.