Tenrikyo - The Reason of Heaven


This universe is the body of God.

Ponder this in all matters.

VIII: 64-71

On however high a place you may be,

everyone is a child of Moonsun.

On the surface, this verse is referring to the religious and political authorities of a particular time and place. As we have mentioned before, Moonsun's efforts to open a path of single-hearted salvation were interfered with as being inappropriate and potentially politically and culturally subversive. As the path progressed it was perhaps possible to mistake Moonsun's teaching as being hostile towards those in authority and thus showing favoritism amongst the imagined classes of human beings. This verse makes it clear that all human beings are children of Moonsun and are thus equally embraced with parental love.

Knowing nothing of it, you try to stop your Parent's work,

even to take things away. What manner is this?

As we have discussed previously, our problems with Moonsun's teaching can be characterized as a misunderstanding of those within the path and a lack of understanding of those as yet outside of it. This verse refers to the actions of those outside of the path who, because they did not know anything of its true intention, made efforts to stop its progress by physically removing objects that the Parent had provided as guides toward the realization of single-hearted salvation.

Before we address the second point made in this particular verse perhaps this would be a good place to recall and ponder the significance of the fact that the removal of those objects had no impact whatsoever on the truth of origin. They only impacted the Parent's efforts to attract the minds of the children back to their origin in ways that were appropriate for their time place and spiritual maturity.

Continuing with this verse, we see the Parent of origin appealing to the children to show the respect that is naturally due to one's Parent. And we are asked what manner it is to treat one's Parent in such a way. This shows us that the fundamental problem for those who attempted to dismantle the path was that they did not recognize their true Parent and thus did not respond with the respect that a child owes to its parent. This is a really big problem for the path and so I think that it might be a good idea to look a little more closely at it.

We have been taught that originally and now the whole universe is only one, the body of Moonsun. And that the one pre-exists even name and form. Finding that condition to be tasteless, the one has, after great effort, managed to distinguish instruments, out of itself, that appear as a seemingly infinite variety of forms. And has, in human forms anyway, gradually evolved the ability to name those forms. All this naming being for the joy of it. It is however the case that all names and forms are temporary. To the form that has named itself human beings this temporary nature of forms appears as birth and death, creation and destruction and in many cases we cannot find joy in those states and the temporary nature that they are limited to.

In response to this lack of joy, the one wishes to add the knowledge of free and unlimited workings to return the joy that was intended in the appearance and naming of forms. Since the one in reality has no one to talk to, the one does not need a name. However since the one now finds that it wants to communicate with itself as the self-centered imagination in a human form, the one needs to use a name. Human imaginations name everything and need names to distinguish between forms. The one however exists before there is any form and so selected the name Moonsun (the one light reflected as predictable change in form, the giver of life giving warmth and the light which allows us to see in the darkness) so that the one, Moonsun, could communicate with self-centered imaginations and draw them back to the truth of their origin.

The name Moonsun was sufficient to attract some self-centered imaginations but not all. The end result, we are taught, was that no one understood. The problem being, a lack of true single-hearted sincerity in the midst of self-centered sincerity both from within and without the path. That is to say that people both within the path and outside of the path wanted to do the right thing and wanted to understand but naturally wanted to do so in a worldly common self-centered way. Unfortunately that way, by its very nature, cannot know or "see" the truth of origin.

What was lacking was the recognition of the ultimate intimacy this is the true relationship between the one and the apparent many as named by the self-centered imagination. The name Moonsun though intended, I think, to provide an external model to be internalized and distinguished within oneself was left externalized. Thus the need for a new name, Parent, to indicate the source, care and intimacy that characterize the true identity that the original Parent of all has with the apparent many self-centered imaginations. We are the flesh and blood of our worldly parents. Deeper still within us is our connection to the Parent of origin. Our most intimate voice speaks within and is reflected by the true Parent of origin. This is not a matter of someone else's beliefs or concerns. Moonsun, God the Parent are names that describe that place within each and every one of us that reflects our innermost heart. The communication that is hastened is intimate and unique to each of us and has nothing to do with any worldly common claims. So it is to open a channel of communication that is as intimate as heart to heart that Moonsun hastens us to settle and remove the obstacle that is the self-centered imagination if even just for a moment. Try it now and savor the point of view that is free and unlimited.

Though until now Moonsun has never come out into the open

no matter what occurred,

Moonsun, like a mirror reflects the state of our mind as the state of our world. There is no comment or interference, no matter what. What we think is reflected as the state and truth of our world. We could live our entire life without having any knowledge of this truth. In many instances this situation becomes the core of our complaint. "Are there no gods, is there no Buddha?" was a common lament or way of asking how god could let something terrible happen.

This time, unless your innermost heart is made thoroughly clear,

the preparations to follow cannot be made.

Now, in response to our pleas, Moonsun, God of origin, God the Parent has come into the open and teaches us that the way to single-hearted salvation requires that we make our innermost heart thoroughly clear.

Thereafter, I shall need only to proceed

with the means to save all of you, whoever you may be.

If we will accept Moonsun's intention and make our innermost heart thoroughly clear, then Moonsun will proceed with the means to save all of us regardless of class or status or anything else. Our part of single-hearted salvation is to make our innermost heart thoroughly clear, Moonsun will take care of everything else.

Hereafter, when I begin My work of single-hearted salvation,

everyone of you will only be spirited.

As we clear the dust of the self-centered imagination from our innermost heart the free and unlimited state, that is the very nature of the origin, shines forth as high-spirited joyous life. Check it out. Test it and see if it is so for yourself.

Whatever Moonsun has once said

will never become false through all time.

The truth of origin does not change and neither does the way to its understanding. Moonsun has promised that single-hearted salvation will follow from the clearing of the innermost heart and that will not change.

Even until now, I have taught you so tediously,

yet there is no understanding in your minds.

We beg and pray for God's help. In response our true Parent is trying in every way to give it to us. Yet we do not understand the help that is given and continue only with our demands from the limited point of view of the self-centered imagination, heaping still more dust on our innermost heart and ignoring the free and unlimited point of view of the truth of origin. This self-centered dust accumulated on our innermost heart is the regret of our true Parent. If we compare Moonsun's tedious efforts to teach and save us with our self-centered demands, then the dust of our self-centered imagination will easily be identified and we can with sincere effort let it go and sweep it away.