Tenrikyo - The Reason of Heaven

     

This universe is the body of God.

Ponder this in all matters.


 

V: 17-23

Until today, I have never hastened you in any way.

Now, I hasten you toward the broad path.

There are several ways to understand the opening of the above verse. "Until today" can of course be viewed as the literal day on which the verse was written. In that context it is addressed to the person for whom the verse was written. My own preference is for the view that "Until today" refers to today. The day that I am reading the verse. In that context the verse is addressed to me, right now, with the intention that I take it as my own concern as opposed to someone else's concern in the past.

As always the tempo is one of hastening. It seems to me that it is necessarily so because of our tendency to rely on our self-centered imagination to direct our efforts. Thus, though we may in fact think it a good idea, without constant hastening and guidance our self-centered imagination my never actually find the time for single-heartedness with God. Being busy, as it often is for every waking moment, with its own imaginings.

As we have discussed before, the broad path that is spoken of is none other than the path of single-heartedness with God. Recall that the performance of the Service is a narrow path that will lead out on to that broad and joyous road. With this in mind we can say that God's hastening here is a hastening for the performance of the Service that will lead us to the broad path of single-heartedness with God.

Never think this path is worldly common.

It is the beginning of the Divine Record for eternity.

These poems often warn us against settling for a "worldly common" interpretation of the path of single-heartedness with God. It stands to reason then that to even understand the intention of these poems we need to be aware of at least two interpretations of each verse. I suggest that it is a good practice in reading these poems to identify at least two different interpretations of each verse. One interpretation to be identified as the worldly common interpretation of the self-centered imagination and the other to be identified as the interpretation that is known through the mind like clear water.

Human thoughts and paths go in and out of fashion. Sometimes over thousands of years but still they all undergo change and eventually disappear. The path of single- heartedness, the truth of origin as known through the mind like clear water does not change. It is the one truth that alone remains unchanged.

I do not say where the performers will be found.

All will come because of disorders of the body.

All worldly common paths imagine special cases, affinities and relationships with God. This is not so of the path of single-heartedness with God. There is no saying who will serve or where the performers will come from.

For each of us dissatisfaction with the world is a problem that stems from thinking ourselves as owning a body. There is no dissatisfaction as profound as the loss of ones health and well being. It is this dissatisfaction with our worldly common understanding of our human condition that leads us to the path that will return us to the origin and eternal joyous life.

These disorders are from My guidance, admonition, or anger.

Ponder, each of you.

We can figure this verse out for ourselves. Or can we?

What are your thoughts on hearing this talk?

I appeal to your repeatedly out of My deep love for you.

Again God senses that we will take a worldly common view of "guidance, admonition or anger" and so we are pointed in the right direction.

However I may express My admonition or anger,

I shall never say that you will not be saved.

Single-hearted salvation is always available no matter what our current circumstance may be.

Think of you humans admonishing your children.

The anger, too, comes from love.

Recall that earlier in this book I said that we would have to wait to see if we would get any help in understanding God's anger. This is it. We are getting a scolding. The way to understand God's guidance, admonition and anger is as a model of parental love. This is not a trivial model. Pondering it can free our imagination so that it can more easily melt back into the Parental Heart.

*************

I give notice of My will suddenly through a slight disorder of the body. People here and there are beginning to understand My will. You should be able to understand that I am indicating the worldly path through his physical disorder...

Sah, Sah, God's truth cannot be temporary.

Osashizu, July 2, 1888

While Oyasama's parental love is thus shown in innumerable ways, She certainly took the greatest care in teaching the Salvation Service. From the very beginning, Oyasama had in mind the completion of the Salvation Service. All the paths She taught - the path to purify the mind, the path of construction, the path to bring peace to the world, the path to ensure rich harvests - all these paths would in fact lead to the completion of the Salvation Service. By teaching the Salvation Service, Oyasama sought to manifest once more, in this world, the divine providence by which the world was created, this time in order to save all mankind. Indeed, there is no other expression in the long history of the world that would show Her parental love so strikingly.

The 3rd Shinbashira, October 26, 1986

All human bodies are things lent by God.

With what thought are you using them?