Tenrikyo - The Reason of Heaven
This universe is the body of God.
Ponder this in all matters.
In everything, listen closely to the words of God.
Everything depends upon the mind of each of you.
Recall that the poems of the Tip of the Writing Brush "Ofudesaki" were written to address the misunderstanding of those within the path as well as those outside of the path of single-heartedness with God. Certainly among the causes of misunderstanding are those of not paying close enough attention or not following instructions as they are given. This should come as little surprise to us as we are now aware of the natural tendency of the self-centered imagination to understand things in a self-centered worldly common way. As these poems progress God gives us further instruction to help us to understand God's words from a point of view that is entirely different from our usual worldly common point of view.
In the verse above, God makes it clear that the way of this path and indeed everything depends upon our individual mind. That is to say that everything depends upon our fundamental state of our mind, original "Nihon" or alienated "Kara" and not on the content or various thoughts we entertain in our day to day worldly common view of the world. This might seem straight forward for us today but when we look at the situation that existed when these poems were written, we find that there was a great deal of sincere misunderstanding. To get some flavor of those times we can look to the Model Story "Hinagata" of Miki's awakening as a shrine of God. From that story we can see that there was a strong expectation that nothing depended upon the condition of our minds and everything depended upon notions such as ritual magic, exorcism, formulas of worship and other worldly common truths that rise undistinguished from the truth of origin.
Further when we read the Timely Instructions "Osashizu" we find that although there was a constant flow of requests to do so, God does not provide worldly common instructions and ideas to direct the course of our day to day activities. Instead we are hastened to return our mind to its origin and from that point of view freely and unlimitedly determine our own way through a joyous life.
Truly be spirited and ponder.
Then lean on God and do the Joyous Service.
Having informed us that everything depends upon our mind God proceeds to give us instruction about the kind of mind that God is hastening and of course also provides us with step by step instructions to settle and test that kind of mind for ourselves.
Do not wonder what this talk is about.
It is solely about the matter of the fertilizer.
Having said that, "God does not provide worldly common instructions and ideas to direct the course of our day to day activities" we immediately come to a topic, which is of the utmost importance to farmers, and, since we all need food to live, to all mankind.
Indeed God helped the villagers with recipes for fertilizer to enhance their corps. God also taught Services of Fertilizer and Germinating. These efforts are an important aspect of the Model Life " Hinagata" and for our ability to teach and understand God's teaching in any time, any place and with any level of spiritual maturity.
The worldly common truth of the effect of fertilizer on the growth of crops is used as "a basis for teaching." The worldly common benefit is a welcome by product of God's tireless efforts to draw the mind to the step by step process of cultivating the mind that is capable of returning to the origin and single-hearted with God. In the teaching, what is being fertilized is the human mind. The Service to fertilize and the actual agricultural fertilizer are the means of communicating with our worldly common thoughts that do not know and have no way of grasping the truth of origin.
This fertilizer: do not wonder what is effective.
The mind's true sincerity is its effectiveness.
In case we have wondered off into the science of fertilizer we are brought back to the real task at hand. The topic is the mind and the necessary ingredient for cultivating and quickly harvesting the mind that returns to the origin and single-heartedness with God is the mind's true sincerity.
When I have discerned your mind of sincerity,
know that I shall provide any protection.
The mind that is truly sincere is the mind that is swept clean of self-centered human thoughts (the point of view that does not know the truth of origin "Kara"), it is the mind that is single-hearted with the origin, "Nihon", the mind like clear water. To see this truth quickly we can lean on God and perform the Joyous Service. The protection that is offered is freely given even now at this time and this place. Whether the power of the origin is accepted and savored depends solely upon the state of our mind. The depth of this sincerity is not just a shift from one worldly common idea to another. It is a real change in the very foundation of our mind. Give it a try and see for yourself! Cut with the worldly common, sweep and settle into the true heart and origin of all things.
" God the Parent will reveal the causality of origin and teach the foundation of any and everything to human beings, who have no understanding of the divine intention. Thus to deliver salvation by teaching the origin is the essence of the ultimate teaching, and that is why God of Origin is God of Origin.
Part III of the Ofudesaki tells us how salvation, promised by this teaching is not brought about by formulas of worship, or by exorcism, or other such common practices."
Sermon October 26, 2000, the Shinbashira
"A 'basis for teaching' signifies a basis for making judgments. A 'basis for teaching' means something that we can refer to in order to find out how to deal with occurrences we encounter, how to proceed with our undertakings, and, especially, whether our attitude of mind and our way of dealing with things and events are actually acceptable in the eyes of God the Parent. "
Address April 19, 1992, the third Shinbashira
All human bodies are things lent by God.
With what thought are your using them?