Shumei’s New York Center is located in Nolita (north of Little Italy), adjacent to Chinatown, Little Italy, and SoHo. To the south, one finds Chinese culture and culinary delights and to the north, boutiques and art galleries.
Since its foundation, the New York Center has been an oasis for a diverse group of New Yorkers, and all join together to celebrate Shumei’s philosophy of diversity. The membership consists of about 60 percent Chinese, 30 percent Japanese and other Asian groups, and about 10 percent non-Asian.
Our center’s history goes back to late December 1981, when Hop Yung, a sixty-year-old lady from Hong Kong, came to the United States to share Jyorei and Meishusama’s teachings. She did not have family or friends in New York and she didn’t speak a word of English. Her only acquaintance was Cheung Tei Wong, whom she met in Hong Kong and whom she would later live with.
Greatly inspired by Mikotosama, Shumei’s second president, Hop Yung was young at heart and a person of a strong will and passion. In mid-January 1982, a few weeks after her arrival, Chung Tei Wong and her daughter Yuk Sim Tsao were standing in Los Angeles Airport with Hop Yung to greet Mikotosama. They then received Ohikaris from him at the Hollywood Center, where Mikotosama allowed them to keep a picture of Shumei’s founder, Meishusama. Soon after, a Home Center with Meishusama’s photo was established in New York City for people to come together to exchange Jyorei.
1982 was a special year with the commemoration of Meishusama’s 100th birthday and the completion of construction of Meishusama Hall at Misono. Hop Yung and Cheung Tei Wong went out to share Jyorei, visiting three houses every day; their activities touched many people’s hearts and spread by word of mouth. On March 21, Eugene Imai, having become a new sensei, gave introduction classes in New York for the first time, and thirty people received their Ohikaris all together. On April 23, New York Home Center was officially opened. Hop Yung planted the seed of the Center and its members carried the torch. Membership grew fast, and on September 17, the center welcomed its 100th member in nine months.
By the mid-1980s, the New York Center was ready to have its own official location. The Scroll of Light was enshrined at a rental apartment on East Broadway in Chinatown. Bao Hing Tsui, an Assistant Sensei from Shumei’s Hong Kong Center, traveled back and forth between the US and Hong Kong to support managing the Center and its growth. Soon there was a need to move to a bigger space. In 1990, the New York Center acquired its permanent and current location by purchasing the entire second floor of an apartment building at 165 Elizabeth Street.
Leadership was handed over from Eugene Imai Sensei to Alan Imai Sensei, and now to Chisako Fukushima Sensei as the director of Shumei East Coast Centers. Nowadays, our membership has reached beyond one thousand people. Coming from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds, our members all support the Shumei’s three arts activities: Jyorei, Natural Agriculture, and Appreciation of Art and Beauty. Carrying the torch from Mikotosama and Hop Yung, we are commited to making the world a better and more beautiful place through practicing the Shumei’s philosophy and three arts.
9:00 – 6:30
7am, 10am, and 6pm
165 Elizabeth Street, 2nd Floor,
New York, NY, 10012, USA
Phone: (212) 219-2737