Tenrikyo - The Reason of Heaven
This universe is the body of God.
Ponder this in all matters.
XVII: 69 - 72
No one is aware of it,
and the ponderings of each of you are only of dust.
The context here is that we are unaware that everyone in the world is a child of the Parent of Origin and that the mind of the Parent is filled with love for us, the children. That is a straightforward enough idea but this verse informs us that our pondering of it is only of dust. By now we should be aware that the kind of pondering that is only dust isn't going to get us to the truth of origin, the core of our mind and single-hearted salvation, so let's go through the instructions that we have been given up until this point and try and bring our pondering into accord with their intention.
It is appropriate in this matter as it is in all matters to begin our pondering by assuming the point of view that this universe is the body of God. Take a moment and reflect upon that truth. Please take note of the separation that is perhaps understood in this pondering. When pondering, is your own body understood as being a part of God's body, the entire universe or is it understood that your body is pondering the entire universe as a whole separate from itself?
Make the conscious effort to include the body into the whole universe which is God's body (return what is borrowed) and "see in your mind" what is left? It is just the self-centered imagination, the voice and pictures of the mind that is left, is it not?
Play with that voice and those mental pictures and see how they are superimposed, in the first case upon the body that one calls "I" and in all the other relationships that flow from that fundamental idea. Now, this fundamental idea of a separate self centered in a body ( the idea of self that borrows a body), the self-centered imagination, is also a part of the whole universe, which is the body of the God of origin. To realize single-hearted salvation and make our ponderings not just "dust", it is necessary to quiet that self-centered imagination, even down to the fundamental idea of a separated self centered on a body. A mind that is quieted and calmed to that degree is the mind of true sincerity, the mind like clear water, the mind that has returned to its origin.
Take a moment now and ponder, identify the universe. Stay with it, let your imagination spread out and try and embrace the scope of the universe. We cannot imagine it but in trying we will make our imagination thinner and purer. Now be aware of your body. Just be aware of your body as being made of the same material as all else that you have identified as the universe. Remain with the pondering, the service and return the body. Now identify the self-centered imagination, the mental voice or the mental picture that is doing this self-reflection.
Now, remaining still with your pondering, be aware of the light of the mind that is illuminating your self-centered imagination as it ponders this truth. That light is the mind of the Parent waiting to embrace your return.
So at this point we have identified the universe, the self-centered imagination that imagines things about itself and the universe and the mind of the parent that makes its possible for anything to be known.
Metaphorically, if all that is illuminated, seen and known in that reflected light is the Moon then the light that makes it possible to see or know anything at all is the Sun. Metaphorically then, the truth of any and everything, the real truth of our-self, is Moonsun!
We self-centered imaginations are the children of Moonsun. We are all directly and intimately related to the God of origin. If we have problems as we experience the marvelous changes that take place in Moonsun's body it is because we do not know or understand the truth of our origin.
Obviously, there are many ways to ponder this truth though I think that all of them need in some way to accommodate the state of mind that is metaphorically referred to as the "mind like clear water" and the knowledge and understanding of the truth that the entire universe is the body of God.
Please think of the regret of God over such minds.
Indeed, nothing more can be said, even should I so desire.
The regret of God is the state of the minds of the children whose pondering is only of dust. That is ponderings that have as their foundation self-centered thinking without any knowledge or understanding of the truth of origin.
This is what needs to be fixed. We should ponder this carefully. We of course all have a tendency to try and get God involved in our self-centered concerns, our dust. The bottom line is that God can only show us the way to single-hearted salvation through the removal of that dust. The Timely Directions ("Osashizu") are particularly clear in this regard. A superficial reading might lead one to wonder why the questions posed are never directly answered in the worldly common ways that such questions would ordinarily anticipate. It is because the questions are dust and no matter how one cuts it the solution is always the removal of that dust.
I shall not repeat what I have said until now.
From now on, you need only be spiritually awakened.
Recall that God our Parent intends that we be taught in ways that are appropriate for our time, place and level of spiritual maturity. It is expected that our sincerity will result in our spiritual awakening and that our needs ( the path that was tailored for us) will be replaced by our ability to tailor and provide paths for others.
The emphasis here is that the path is supposed to quickly lead to spiritual awakening. That is single-hearted salvation, the knowledge and understanding that this entire universe is the body of God and everything is what God says and does. The knowledge and understanding that appears in the mind like clear water. If it doesn't do that then it is because our pondering is only of dust.
Hereafter, there is no knowing what I shall say.
I request that you ponder thoroughly.
The path of saving one family member, the path of saving one family, the path of saving one village, the path to save all of the minds of the world. In each case there is no knowing what God will have to say to open a mind to the reason of heaven in a way that is appropriate for a particular time, place or level of spiritual maturity.
Though we have no way of knowing what God may say there is still only one intention (a free and unlimited joyous life for all human beings), there is still only the one means of realizing that intention (single-heartedness with God, the knowledge and understanding of the truth of origin) and there is still only one method (whatever it takes to open a mind to the reason of heaven in a way appropriate for each and every mind regardless of time, place or level of spiritual maturity).
As I ponder this I might reflect upon whether my self-centered needs and desires require being tended to in ways that suit me or whether as one who would be one of God's instruments "Timbers", I am committed to tending to the needs of others in ways that suit them.