Tenrikyo - The Reason of Heaven

     

This universe is the body of God.

Ponder this in all matters.


 

IV 30-35

Though there are many people throughout the world,

there is no one who knows the mind of God.

There are several approaches to pondering the above verse. One might start by recalling that the purpose of these poems is to address and correct the sincere misunderstandings of God's direct revelation of the truth of origin by those people who were closest to the Residence of origin at the time that the poems were written. That awareness is of course of great importance to us because it gives us an opportunity to be sure that we do not to repeat those same misunderstandings. We can indeed be grateful to those who pioneered the path before us for their sincere efforts in modeling the exploration of the limitations of worldly common human knowledge and its inability to know the truth of origin.

Another approach to the above verse echoes verse I, 1 and addresses the universal inability of worldly common knowledge to know the mind of God. This approach provides us with the opportunity to be sure that we are not mistaking worldly common truths from any time and any place, for the truth of origin. After all there is a very strong human bias that knowledge is based on the accumulation of ideas. And indeed that is pretty much the case as regards worldly common truths. In the above verse however, God is reminding us that the truth of origin is not one of or an accumulation of any of those worldly common truths. It is a truth of a different sort all together.

This time, I shall teach you in detail

all of the truth in the mind of God.

By following the reason of the opening verse we can assume that being taught "in detail all of the truth in the mind of God" does not involve the encyclopedic accumulation of any worldly common thoughts. In this exclusion God does not question the truth or validity of worldly common thoughts. Reasonably, if they are not part of or are in the way of the truth that God is offering, then it makes sense to just set them aside for the time being while we awaken to the truth of single-heartedness with the mind of God. Then we can once again use them freely and without limitation as we wish.

In all matters, if you come to know the truth of single-heartedness

with God, you will never be overcome by Kara.

Knowing the mind of God is the truth of single-heartedness with God. It is a fundamental truth that applies to all matters. When worldly common truths are set aside, swept away, cleared or settled then what remains is single-heartedness with the mind of God. Once one knows the truth of single-heartedness with God, one will never again mistake self-centered truths for the truth of origin, single-heartedness with God. It is indeed a fundamental change in one's perception of the world.

Hereafter, My only concern will be the preparations

quickly to distinguish between Kara and Nihon step by step.

It is obvious here that "Kara" (China) represents worldly common truths as known through self-centered thinking that is alienated from and does not know the truth of origin and "Nihon" (Japan) represents the mind of God or the point of view that is single-hearted with God. The sincere intention of God then is to show us the way to distinguish between our self-centered truths or thoughts and what remains when they are quieted and removed.

If only this distinction is made quickly,

the regret of God will be cleared away.

The promise is made that by making this distinction, the regret of God, the unintended lack of joy and depression that can accumulate like dust or muddy water, in the self-centered mind that does not know the truth of its origin; will be replaced with a high spirited joyous life. That joyous life being free and unlimited and which is the very nature of the mind of God and single-heartedness with God.

If the regret of God in Truth is cleared away,

all minds in the world will be spirited.

By clearing away the root and foundation of human suffering and replacing it with the truth of origin, the root and foundation of joy, the world will become one of free and unlimited joy. Well might we ask how this distinction is to be made? To this end God has opened a path for us. The poems at hand show the way to realize this promise quickly. It is a path that is called by many names. It is a path of true sincerity, single-hearted salvation, deep self-reflection, resolve and the perfection of the Service. Still it is only one path. It is the way to distinguish step by step between what is original "Nihon" and what is alien "Kara".

We can do this now. Even at this time and place. If you know how to dance note the distinction that is made clear during its performance. The self-centered imagination is superimposed over the mind of God, like dust on a lens. It speaks and dreams from a self-centered point of view and distorts the perception of things as they are. If you are unable to dance, ponder deeply the verses at the top and bottom of this page. Who claims ownership and is separated from the world? What is the view when those claims are quiet?

The path of Oyasama can be called by various names but it is fundamentally one. If we take this path, we shall be saved from our own sufferings, and natural disasters. It is a path through which we shall be granted the Joyous Life by the mind alone.

Sermon on February 18, 1986

The 3rd Shinbashira

If we look at the undercurrents of our history in whatever period, we shall find misunderstanding on the part of those within, the people who believed in the teachings, and lack of understanding on the part of those outside, those who did not know the teachings.

Sermon at the Autumn Grand Service October 26, 1988

The third Shinbashira

All human bodies are things lent by God.

With what thought are you using them?