How about having that discussion here and now? What are the factors that go into you (those reading this thread) believing or disbelieving Gozo Shioda? In other words, do you believe him? Why/why not?
John Stevens told me that the reason he included the episode in his biography of the Founder was the source. He thought that Shioda, being a non-Omoto believer and generally being a skeptic meant that he was a much more reliable source than, for example, Kanshu Sunadomari.
I'd agree with Stevens' reasoning, Shioda's writing style is practical and straightforward. I think that Shioda certainly saw something
. What it was, or what the Founder did, I'm not sure (Shioda wasn't completely sure either). Best thing to do would be to read the original source yourself.