This contains an idea for what I suppose
could be considered a final reunion. That is,
a coming together for those of us who were there,
and have or had loved ones who still hold in memory
the event that signaled the end of World War II.

As was suggested, here is my story:

I landed at Nagasaki in September 1945 with the 6th Regiment of Marines. Most of us shared, from experience, that “the only good Jap was a dead Jap.” We went ashore in full combat readiness to find ourselves standing in a dark silent scene of desolate destruction for which there is no human description. But the smell of burned human flesh was still in the air, and everywhere about.

As a part of Regimental Communications, I moved freely about in that first month, and saw and heard all of what had happened and was still happening. Those memories are with me still. The terrible scenes of continuing anguish that I witnessed became a part of what I was and still am.

On “one particular day,” at “one particular moment in time,” I found myself standing directly in the center of this unspeakable, indeed unthinkable, devastation that had to have been caused by someone or something. At “that one time” I was filled with complete rage, a wrenching, seething, frustrating, insatiable need for revenge. But against what or whom? It had no point of location, no focus of causation – in effect, no one to blame, no one to hold responsible. It became a passion of intense revulsion for myself, for this world and for any and all members of the human species – a contained certainty from deep within me that all of us, everyone on this earth, all were totally guilty together. And then at “that one moment in time,” the light of an inner peace enveloped me. It became “a space in time” where a new resolution appeared, and with it, the message:

“Look at this as a new beginning.”

Thus began a new continuum of time in which we have all begun to share. It emerged from the ashes of an atomic fire that marked an ending to an era now long since past.

I have many happy memories of my 8 months of occupancy in Japan . It certainly includes my recognition and respect for the fighting spirit of an indomitable adversary with whom we had at last found an absolute necessity to truly live together in peace. But even more, a discovery of how much we have in common as simply, inhabitants of this earth -- the true communication of friendship of people with people, sharing together the resolution of common problems, through the recognition of common goals.

This, most certainly, was the beginning of what has grown through the years to become the profound friendship and trust that our nations now share with each other.

And finally, as hackneyed as it appears in the voicing, I began to find with my Japanese friends, as former enemies, a self-evident truth, not in doctrinal, religious or political systems, but in an inner self-evidence that indeed all men are created equal. A true inner self-awareness that each of us is totally endowed with an unalienable right to share the will of an eternally creative Universal Mind -- a sharing expressed in acts of forgiveness and love. We are the amazing uniqueness of our total similitude. We are singularly, and in our self-inclusions, the lives, the liberties and the pursuits of happiness that are the aspirations of all the peoples of this world.

From Nagasaki we moved to Sasebo and then on to Fukuoka. And sure enough, right there in that most beautiful city, at cherry blossom time, I fell in love. Doumo arigatou gozaimasu.

I returned home in June of '46, where I began, as did many young/old veterans, my adult life.

One more story to connect to Our Reunion
for International Forgiveness Week:

In 1971, I was right in the middle of dying of an incurable disease. Everyone, including me had given up all hope. Then, in those final moments, virtually the same feeling of revengeful despondency that I had felt in Nagasaki 25 years before, again enveloped me -- yet even stronger. I was crushed into a bottomless black hole of despair, filled with the utter meaninglessness of this life, and simply died.

Once again appeared “that space of peace and happiness.” I was reminded of the only thing that matters in this world: I have a mission to teach to all, a “continuing rebirth” that must and will align with “this new beginning” – “this new continuum of time”. And then began the Light… It surrounded my bed and was for that moment brighter than the sun -- an incredible feeling of joy and love and understanding, that so many of us have described in our Life-after-Life experiences. The message was very simply: “Here's another chance”; “Depend on me”; “I will never fail you”; “Teach others what you have been given”. And at that moment I was completely healed.

I tried to leave the hospital that night, but of course, couldn't find my shoes. I did leave in the morning, following an examination by the medical staff. They found my recovery to be unexplainable, inexplicable and truly extraordinary. But then, as they say, “these things do sometimes happen.” Don't they? You bet they do.

And so it was and still is. I offer to anyone who cares to listen, the simple message of total God-dependence: “Simply let go and let God”. To some it sounds like surrender and so it is. But what awesome healing power is found in letting His Will be done.

I believe in miracles. More than that, I know they happen and are happening. It is God's Will that we be whole and perfect as we were created. And in the “great good fortune” of this eternal Truth, we, as so–called mortal man, have nothing whatsoever to say about it.

I live in, and continue to practice living in “the right here and now, just as it is”. I carry a message of miraculous spiritual recovery and try to serve as an agency for the certainty that the light and love of true happiness surrounds us all, and can be found and sustained, and indeed directly communicated in the adventure of the “celestial speed-up of time” that our species now joyfully endures.

The miraculous healings of our minds and bodies occur through the Holy Spirit, in the continuing power of our acts of forgiveness and love, with no regard whatsoever for this unforgivable world of pain and death.

Perhaps there's a little more to this story, but most of what's left has pretty much already been told.

Don't Forget Forgiveness Week. Come on ahead, just as you are, for any reason at all. You are bound to meet a lot of old friends, and certainly some new ones that you've already always known and loved, but are just now remembering in this new continuum of time.

Come and be healed. Come and let it be “a new beginning” for you.

There's lots of help just waiting for your arrival.
Remember too, how very much you have to offer to everybody.

PFC Chuck Anderson, USMC
Nagasaki , Japan 1945
Wisconsin Dells, USA 2001