Your illness can be cured

Throughout time, many of the prophets were able to heal people of their illnesses. But what was the purpose in the ability to heal the sick? Was this a way of telling people that they represented God? Or did these prophets understand the causes of these illnesses?  

If we are to understand the source of our illness, or disease, will we be able to cure our own infliction?  Do all people have the capability to heal?  In the Ofudesaki and the Osashizu are the following:

However serious an illness will become, I never say that it will not be cured. 12-52 Ofudesaki

The saving of those whom doctors are unable to save is the foundation of the path. You tell them the teachings (about the soul). They listen and they are healed.Oct 17, 1893 Osashizu

Understanding the soul/heart is important in the removal of an illness. It helps you understand how causality and karma work.

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Tenrikyo

There are many leaders in the church that wonder why God’s promise of the Joyous world does not come. Why are we as a religion not growing in numbers? What information about the religion would you give to a person who you wanted to share the religion with? What are the hurdles that stand in the way of our religion? What is this Service that we believe would save the world? 

All the answers to these questions are in the Ofudesaki, the most sacred scripture in our religion.  God tells us that this world is constructed on reason, and will instruct us by reasoning in verse. There is no initial requirement of having blind faith in a God we cannot see.  Faith in our religion comes after reasoning.  Unfortunately like in many religions, there are leaders that instruct us to have faith in rituals, procedures or ceremonies that may not be supported by what is in the Ofudesaki.

This is why we must begin to clear our minds and become receptive to what is actually written in the Ofudesaki. We must respect our leaders, but at the same time question their teachings based on what is written in the Ofudesaki.  Why is our religion so infinitesimally small compared to the major religions (kara) in the world?  In the Ofudesaki, God tells us that eventually we (nihon) will take over kara (the world), and paradise will occur on the earth. But we are not even close to this prediction.  No, I am not talking about the population of the world dancing in Japanese, dressed in our black service kimonos, with the accompanying Japanese instruments.  This is not the paradise I am talking about. Yet many of our leaders believe that this must happen before the Kanrodai is erected. We all in our minds know that the Yorozuyo and the 12 songs will not be performed by the entire world, especially in Japanese.

Some of you have told me that the Ofudesaki is difficult to translate and understand telling me that the Japanese language is complex, and has many meanings for a single word.  Some have even told me that the Ofudesaki is not to be taken literally, but has obscure and hidden meanings that cannot be understood by our present mindset. These arguments go contrary to what is written in the Ofudesaki. God tells us that this is a world based on reasoning.  The writings in the Ofudesaki are basic hiragana, written in waka form of poetry, which made it easy for the early followers to understand.

The answers to all the questions in the first paragraph are all in the Ofudesaki. This is why I had initiated the Tenrikyo Ofudesaki Study Group on Facebook.  If we believe that the Ofudesaki are the words of God, then we must put much effort into finding the truths that it contains. The ingredients to save the world are in the 1.700 verses.

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The Soul

What information if understood would change the world? What would happen if everyone understood the soul?  God in the Ofudesaki tells us that when everyone understands the soul, there will be paradise on earth.

What is the soul?  The soul has also been called the heart or the spirit. Scientists have not located and verified the existence of the soul in our bodies. We know that our physical bodies decay upon our death, but many believe that our souls will exist to continue for eternity.

We believe that the soul by itself is energy that contains our pattern of thoughts and our fate. Some may question how energy may convert to thought patterns and fate. Some say quantum physics may hold the answer? But until it is proven or disproved,  all we have is our best ideas and theories that we fabricate from what we presently know, including  information from religious doctrine.The following will attempt to define the soul according to our current knowledge, and verses from the Ofudesaki. Let us continue to presume that the soul is energy.

When the soul occupies our bodies before birth, the soul programs and activates our minds with our thought patterns in the developing neural system; while in the body, the soul also collects and stores our merits and demerits that were caused by acting on these existing pattern of thoughts. These merits and demerits are  eventually released as our fate when conditions are favorable.  We reap what we have sowed. The soul is who we are; and it also enforces justice for our behavior.

But some people will say that they can’t remember having sowed evil, yet they suffer. Others will arrogantly boast that they have done evil, yet they do not suffer.  It is as if God places a wall in front of us by the prolonged lapse of time between cause and effect; we do not know what fate exist around the corner. This lapse of time between cause and effect often extends into our next lifetime. But why the wait?  The soul waits for the right circumstances and conditions to distribute our fate.

These are the concepts of reincarnation and karma, where our memories are erased upon our death; but our pattern of thoughts and our fate are preserved to be manifested later in our next lifetime by the soul.  Both our thought patterns we have acted upon, and our fate that were created by acting upon these thought patterns will continue on, even after our physical demise. This is possible because of the soul. Again we reap what we have sowed. We are responsible for our own actions!

Metaphorically, our souls are like little suitcases that contain our pattern of thoughts and our fate, exiting our bodies at death to ascend to heaven; and descending from heaven to enter our new bodies before birth. One can say that we exist both on earth and heaven for eternity because of the soul.

By what mechanism does the soul operate? Upon entering our developing bodies, the soul eventually programs our minds with our previous thought patterns (like greed and arrogance) from our past lives.

There are no surprises to what thought patterns our bodies receive from our souls. We have the same pattern of thoughts that we had acted upon in our past life. For example, if we succumbed to greed in our past life, we have the same thought of greed in this lifetime. The same neural pathways of greed are reestablished.  One can say that our souls upon entering our bodies, eventually create and restore our own individualized minds!

It is these difference in the pattern of thoughts that make each of us unique. Some of us will have more or stronger negative thought patterns (see figure 2)than others. Others will have more positive thought patterns. It is these thought patterns that influence our behaviors and eventually determine our fate. God tells us to sweep away these negative thought patterns, so we do not act upon them. If this happens, we will have only positive thought patterns, leading to only positive fate.

But how do we know if we have these evil thoughts in our minds?  These negative thoughts always bring upon an emotion or temptation. For example, when we have the thought of arrogance, often the emotion of anger will arise. Temptation appears when we have the thought of greed or self-love in our minds. Depression will appear if we have the thought of self love or regret. The presence of these negative emotions or feelings are telltale signs that we have evil thoughts in our minds.

What do we do when anger, depression or temptation arises from these negative thoughts? Most people will direct their anger, depression or temptation at what appears to be the source, which could be an coworker, stranger, spouse, circumstance or even God. But if we understand the soul, we acknowledge that it is our own soul that brings upon these challenges or fate. Our past actions created our own fate. These obstacles are only messengers of our souls. Our efforts will be directed to calm our minds, and ponder our evil thoughts that created these obstacles; therefore not acting upon what emotions (like anger) were elicited by them. By this process, the neural pathway of the evil thought becomes less prominent, and the emotions they elicit will also decrease. This is how we gradually eliminate our evil thoughts ( and become spirited.

Eventually by this process of not acting on our evil thoughts, especially when our soul bring upon sufferings, we can purify both our minds and our souls; where only positive thoughts emerge from our minds, and joy flows from our souls.

What happen when we act on our evil thoughts?

When we act on our evil thoughts, we cause suffering to others, and more evil thoughts are created in our own minds (figure 5). The neural pathways for these thought become stronger, and the emotions they elicits becomes stronger to resist. This causes us to continually act upon our evil thoughts, causing  more demerits which our soul collects. The soul eventually releases these demerits (energies) as fate (figure 6).   The cycle of suffering will continue until we understand the soul.

 

 

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One Truth if Understood, Would Change the World

What information if understood would change the world? What would happen if everyone understood the soul?  God in the Ofudesaki tells us that when everyone understands the soul, there will be paradise on earth.

What is the soul?  The soul has also been called the heart or the spirit. Scientists have not located and verified the existence of the soul in our bodies. We know that our physical bodies decay upon our death, but many believe that our souls will exist to continue for eternity.

We believe that the soul by itself is energy that contains our pattern of thoughts and our fate. Some may question how energy may convert to thought patterns and fate. Some say quantum physics may hold the answer? But until it is proven or disproved,  all we have is our best ideas and theories that we fabricate from what we presently know, including  information from religious doctrine.The following will attempt to define the soul according to our current knowledge, and verses from the Ofudesaki. Let us continue to presume that the soul is energy.

When the soul occupies our bodies before birth, the soul programs and activates our minds with our thought patterns in the developing neural system; while in the body, the soul also collects and stores our merits and demerits that were caused by acting on these existing pattern of thoughts. These merits and demerits are  eventually released as our fate when conditions are favorable.  We reap what we have sowed. The soul is who we are; and it also enforces justice for our behavior.

But some people will say that they can’t remember having sowed evil, yet they suffer. Others will arrogantly boast that they have done evil, yet they do not suffer.  It is as if God places a wall in front of us by the prolonged lapse of time between cause and effect; we do not know what fate exist around the corner. This lapse of time between cause and effect often extends into our next lifetime. But why the wait?  The soul waits for the right circumstances and conditions to distribute our fate.

These are the concepts of reincarnation and karma, where our memories are erased upon our death; but our pattern of thoughts and our fate are preserved to be manifested later in our next lifetime by the soul.  Both our thought patterns we have acted upon, and our fate that were created by acting upon these thought patterns will continue on, even after our physical demise. This is possible because of the soul. Again we reap what we have sowed. We are responsible for our own actions!

Metaphorically, our souls are like little suitcases that contain our pattern of thoughts and our fate, exiting our bodies at death to ascend to heaven; and descending from heaven to enter our new bodies before birth. One can say that we exist both on earth and heaven for eternity because of the soul.

By what mechanism does the soul operate? Upon entering our developing bodies, the soul eventually programs our minds with our previous thought patterns (like greed and arrogance) from our past lives.

There are no surprises to what thought patterns our bodies receive from our souls. We have the same pattern of thoughts that we had acted upon in our past life. For example, if we succumbed to greed in our past life, we have the same thought of greed in this lifetime. The same neural pathways of greed are reestablished.  One can say that our souls upon entering our bodies, eventually create and restore our own individualized minds!

It is these difference in the pattern of thoughts that make each of us unique. Some of us will have more or stronger negative thought patterns than others. Others will have more positive thought patterns. It is these thought patterns that influence our behaviors and eventually determine our fate. God tells us to sweep away these negative thought patterns, so we do not act upon them. If this happens, we will have only positive thought patterns, leading to only positive fate.

But how do we know if we have these evil thoughts in our minds?  These negative thoughts always bring upon an emotion or temptation. For example, when we have the thought of arrogance, often the emotion of anger will arise. Temptation appears when we have the thought of greed or self-love in our minds. Depression will appear if we have the thought of self love or regret. The presence of these negative emotions or feelings are telltale signs that we have evil thoughts in our minds.

What do we do when anger, depression or temptation arises from these negative thoughts? Most people will direct their anger, depression or temptation at what appears to be the source, which could be an coworker, stranger, spouse, circumstance or even God. But if we understand the soul, we acknowledge that it is our own soul that brings upon these challenges or fate. Our past actions created our own fate. These obstacles are only messengers of our souls. Our efforts will be directed to calm our minds, and ponder our evil thoughts that created these obstacles; therefore not acting upon what emotions (like anger) were elicited by them. By this process, the neural pathway of the evil thought becomes less prominent, and the emotions they elicit will also decrease. This is how we gradually eliminate our evil thoughts and become spirited.

Eventually by this process of not acting on our evil thoughts, especially when our soul bring upon sufferings, we can purify both our minds and our souls; where only positive thoughts emerge from our minds, and joy flows from our souls

What happen when we act on our evil thoughts? When we act on our evil thoughts, we cause suffering to others, and more evil thoughts are created in our own minds. The neural pathways for these thought become stronger, and the emotions they elicits becomes stronger to resist. This causes us to continually act upon our evil thoughts, causing  more demerits which our soul collects. The soul eventually releases these demerits (energies) as fate . The cycle of suffering will continue until we understand the soul.

For more understanding on the soul, please visit The Tenrikyo Ofudesaki Study Group on Facebook.

 

 

 

 

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The Truth to Happiness

In the Ofudesaki, God gives us the ingredients to the Joyous life. This information is free for all to see. There is no donations needed, pilgrimage to a holy site, sacrifice or prostration before God.

The following is from tomorrow’s verse of the Facebook Tenrikyo Ofudesaki Study Group

Imamade wa nani yono koto mo sekainami

Korekara wakaru mune no uchi yori 3-43

Until now, whatever occurrence/matter was about the world (can get away if no one sees you do it).

From now, you will understand what comes forth from the innermost heart.

The heart is mentioned 71 times in the Ofudesaki, including the very first verse. What is the heart that God tells us that we do not understand? God through the Ofudesaki is telling us how we can purify our minds by ourselves if we understand the heart/soul. 

It is the heart/soul that monitors our behavior, and distributes our merits and demerits (karma). The heart and the mouth are the sand and filter. It is not God that punishes or rewards us like many in the world believe.  Remember God in the Ofudesaki tells us that he/she has been on the sidelines since the creation of mankind.

By what comes forth from our hearts/souls, we can purify our minds by calming our minds when obstacles occur in our lives, and not take action on our evil thoughts.  This is sometimes difficult to do, since we often want to blame others for our problems. But if we realize that it is our behavior in the past that has resulted in our souls distributing justice by using occurrences or people around us, we can begin to purify our own minds.

It is this soul that God wants us to understand and share with the world. God will begin to help us do this by utilizing illness as guidance to help people understand the soul/heart. This is what God tells us when he/she tells us that God will begin marvelous things in verse 3-42.

Yes, we can live the Joyous life without God, but it is God that will help us spread the truth of the soul to the world, This is why God has descended from heaven to help us spread the truth of the soul.

To understand more of the Ofudesaki, please visit Tenrikyo Ofudesaki Study Group on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/458471844742952/.

 

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Understanding the Heart

Have you wondered why we perform some of the ritual of our religion? What are we asking for when we perform the Joyous Service? Why do we have to return to Ojiba for our salvation? I would think that God is omnipresent. Why are we wearing Japanese attire, and praying in Japanese? Is this what God demands of us for our salvation? If this is the case, Tenrikyo is like all religions, depending on faith that our early members relied on.  It is human nature to place their faith in teachings that originated long ago, often making the information in them to be fact, and incontrovertible.

What makes Tenrikyo so different from other religions? We have the sacred book called the Ofudesaki. Unlike other religions, where the writings are recollections of what others remember, the Ofudesaki are verses directly from God. Through the hands of Oyasama, God has given us the instructions to attain the Joyous life for all mankind.

How many of you actually have read the Ofudesaki? Most of us depend on our clergy to decipher and tell us how to attain salvation. But are they correct in their translation and interpretation of this most sacred book?  Even the children of Oyasama had a difficult time understanding the teachings. Look at the suffering that Shuji and Kokan endured.  Did they ever understand the teachings at that time? Are we in the church, understanding the Ofudesaki?  What do we need to understand?  In the first verse of the Ofudesaki, God tells us that we do not understand the heart (mune). What is the heart?

In the Ofudesaki, mune or heart is mentioned 71 times.  God is telling us how important it is to understand the heart. It is not God’s heart as translated by church headquarters, but it is our own heart (mune) that we must understand. Let us discuss this heart that God tells us we do not understand.

We know that our bodies decay when we pass away; but many of you will agree that there is something in us that continues after our physical demise. Many will call this entity the soul, spirit or heart.  I believe that it is the soul that God calls the heart (mune).  Many who believe in reincarnation will believe that this soul will ascend to heaven, and eventually return back to earth. In essence, the soul is who we are, and our bodies are borrowed from God.

What does the soul contain? In the Ofudesaki, God tells us that the soul is the sand. It collects our demerits (evil actions) and stores them to be distributed back to us as obstacles or sufferings (fate). We reap what we have sowed.  Many people believe, that it is God that punishes us for our sins, but it is actually our own souls that serve as nature’s justice. Remember, in the Ofudesaki God tells us that he/she has been on the sidelines since the creation of mankind.

What else does the soul contain? I believe that the soul also helps to transport our pattern of thoughts from one lifetime to another. Of course our memories are erased, but our thought patterns of greed, arrogance, regret, miserliness, and self-love are transferred.  These are the thought patterns that we have acted upon to create the demerits (fate) that the soul collects and stores, and eventually releases as our fate. Therefore the soul contains our fate and thought patterns.

How does understanding the soul help?  God tells us in the Ofudesaki that the mouth and our bodies are the filter. If we do not act upon the evil thoughts in our minds when our souls deliver our fate, we can purify our minds. When our minds are purified, the soul only distributes positive fate or the Joyous life.

Wow, we can actually have a joyous life without believing in God! Yes this is true; but wouldn’t you like to share the truth of the soul with others to make their lives better?  God tells us we can do this if we purify our minds first by calming our minds and pondering what the soul brings forth (mune no uchi yori) daily in our lives. With our minds purified, what do we do next?

We must tell people about the soul. We know it is almost impossible to convince people to understand a concept that is unfamiliar to them like the soul.  This is where God will help us.  God has given us instructions on how to share the truth of the soul to the world. These are the instructions:

  1. to purify our own minds by understanding the soul
  2. to spread the concept of the soul to others (hinokishin and niogake)
  3. to perform the Joyous Service asking God to sweep evil from the minds of the people we have spread the truth to. God may place temporary illness as guidance to these people to help them understand the soul.
  4. To heal these people when they come to our churches and help them purify their minds by understanding what comes forth from their souls.

I hope I have helped you understand a little more of the Ofudesaki, and God’s teachings. I encourage you all to participate in the Tenrikyo Ofudesaki Study Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/458471844742952/    

 

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The Truth of the Soul

Welcome to our website and the teachings of the Tenrikyo religion. Most of us can agree that our physical bodies will decay and decompose when we pass away. We will also agree or hope that there is something in our bodies that will continue on after our physical demise. Many of us call this intangible energy source the soul, heart or spirit. The only debate will be where we (our souls) go after our death.

In our sacred book from God, God tells us about the heart/soul. God tells us by understanding the soul, one will be able to understand why we suffer or have joy in this world. The following will attempt to explain in detail information about the soul/heart. For those that have illnesses, you may find the information very helpful!

Do you have an illness that doctors and medicine cannot cure?

*******GOD CAN HEAL YOU*******

In our Scripture, God tells us:

However serious an illness will become, I never say that it will not be cured. 12-52 Ofudesaki

In the Bible, Jesus and his disciples were said to have healed the sick. In the beginning of our religion, thousands of people were cured of their illness; but where are the miracles now? 

What are the ingredients to make these miracles happen now? Does this require believing in God and having faith? Does it require making donations or making a pilgrimage to a holy site? The following is from Tenrikyo’s scripture:

The saving of those whom doctors are unable to save is the foundation of the path. You tell them the teachings (about the soul). They listen and they are healed. Oct 17, 1893 Osashizu

 

GOD WILL HEAL YOU IF YOU UNDERSTAND THE SOUL

 

Why would God heal you if you understand the soul?  To answer this question, we must first find out why there is illness and suffering. Why are some people afflicted with cancer? Why do people suffer from diseases? Why do people have heart problems? Why do people get into accidents? Why do some people have unbearable headaches? Why do bad people appear in our lives?  Are these all random events or planned by God?

God tells us that these events are not random or created by God. God has been a spectator since the creation of mankind.

Though until now God has never come out into the open, no matter what unpleasant occurrences one experienced. 8-66 Ofudesaki

God tells us that it is our own soul that brings upon joy or suffering to us:

Above all else, guard your soul,

for everything you do flows from it. Proverbs 4:23

God tells us that we need to understand the soul to uncover why we suffer or have joy. The first verse of our most sacred scripture begins with:

Looking all over the world and through all ages, I find no one who understands the soul. Ofudesaki 1-1

What is the soul?  The soul has also been called the heart or the spirit. Scientists have not located and verified the existence of the soul in our bodies. We know that our physical bodies decay upon our death, but our souls will exist for eternity.

We believe that the soul by itself is energy that is comprised of our fate and our pattern of thoughts. When it occupies our bodies that we borrow from God, the soul programs and activates our minds with these thought patterns; and the soul collects and stores our merits and demerits created by our actions upon these same pattern of thoughts, eventually releasing them as fate. We reap what we have sowed. The soul is who we are; and it also enforces justice for our behavior.

But some people will say that they can’t remember having sowed evil, yet they suffer. Others will arrogantly boast that they have done evil, yet they do not suffer.  It is as if God places a wall in front of us by the prolonged lapse of time between cause and effect; we do not know what fate exist around the corner. This lapse of time between cause and effect often extends into our next lifetime. But why the wait?  The soul waits for the right circumstances and conditions to distribute our fate.

These are the concepts of reincarnation and karma, where our memories are erased upon our death; but our pattern of thoughts and our fate are preserved to be manifested later in our next lifetime by the soul.  Both our thought patterns we have acted upon, and our fate that were created by acting upon these thought patterns will continue on, even after our physical demise. This is possible because of the soul. Again we reap what we have sowed. We are responsible for our own actions!

Metaphorically, our souls are like little suitcases that contain our pattern of thoughts and our fate, exiting our bodies at death to ascend to heaven; and descending from heaven to enter our new bodies before birth. One can say that we exist both on earth and heaven for eternity because of the soul.

By what mechanism does the soul operate? Upon entering our developing bodies, the soul programs our minds with our previous thought patterns (like greed and arrogance) from our past lives .

There are no surprises to what thought patterns our bodies receive from our souls. We have the same pattern of thoughts that we had acted upon in our past life. For example, if we succumbed to greed in our past life, we have the same thought of greed in this lifetime. The same neural pathways of greed are reestablished.  One can say that our souls upon entering our bodies, create and restore our own individualized minds!

It is these difference in the pattern of thoughts that make each of us unique. Some of us will have more negative thought patterns (see figure 1) than others. Others will have more positive thought patterns. It is these thought patterns that influence our behaviors and eventually determine our fate. God tells us to sweep away these negative thought patterns, so we do not act upon them.

IMG_2065(1)figure 1

Evil thought patterns are arrogance, greed, regret, and self-love. These neural pathways influence our behaviors.

But how do we know if we have these evil thoughts in our minds?  These negative thoughts always bring upon an emotion or temptation. For example, when we have the thought of arrogance, often the emotion of anger will arise. Temptation appears when we have the thought of greed or self-love in our minds. Depression will appear if we have the thought of self love or regret. The presence of these negative emotions or feelings are telltale signs that we have evil thoughts in our minds.

What do we do when anger, depression or temptation arises from these negative thoughts? Most people will direct their anger, depression or temptation at what appears to be the source, which could be an coworker, stranger, spouse, circumstance or even God. But if we understand the soul, we acknowledge that it is our own soul that brings upon these challenges or fate. Our past actions created our own fate. These obstacles are only messengers of our souls. Our efforts will be directed to calm our minds, and ponder our evil thoughts that created these obstacles; therefore not acting upon what emotions (like anger) were elicited by them. By this process, the neural pathway of the evil thought becomes less prominent, and the emotions they elicit will also decrease. This is how we gradually eliminate our evil thoughts and become spirited.

 

Eventually by this process of not acting on our evil thoughts, especially when our soul bring upon sufferings, we can purify both our minds and our souls; where only positive thoughts emerge from our minds, and joy flows from our souls (figure 2).

IMG_1337figure 2

Our positive  actions create positive energies (+). Some of these energies convert back to positive thoughts; and some are collected by the our souls as merits. These positive energies of the soul manifest into joy by the exchange of energies. The symbol ? represents good thought

What happen when we act on our evil thoughts?

When we act on our evil thoughts, we cause suffering to others, and more evil thoughts are created in our own minds. The neural pathways for these thought become stronger, and the emotions they elicits becomes stronger to resist. This causes us to continually act upon our evil thoughts, causing  more demerits which our soul collects. The soul eventually releases these demerits (energies) as fate. The cycle of suffering will continue until we understand the soul.

 

Now we can answer why God will heal us if we understand the soul.

Since the creation of human beings, God has been a spectator; but will begin to work to help mankind live a joyous life.

By understanding the soul, God will heal us so we can begin the process of sweeping away our evil thoughts by our own efforts.

One question would be what would happen if everyone understands the soul? No discrimination, no wars, only peace and prosperity. What religions offers so much for so little in understanding an easy concept of life.

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The heart and mouth are the sand and filter

The following if from the Ofudesaki:

 

Kono suino doko ni aru ya to omouna yo

Mune to kuchi to ga suna to suino ya 3-11

This filter, where do you think it is.

The heart/soul and the mouth are the sand and filter 

 

This verse I believe is one of the most important verse in the Ofudesaki.  It tells us how we can purify our minds by ourselves.  But first let talk about the heart or soul that is mentioned in the Ofudesaki many times, that God tells us that we do not understand. Our physical bodies decays, but there is something in our bodies that continue, which I call the soul or is referred as the heart in the Ofudesaki. It is this soul that collects and stores our merits or demerits on our actions while we are physically alive; and it is the soul that eventually distributes justice from these demerits. We reap what we have sowed.  But it is also the soul by itself that carries our thoughts patterns (dusts) after our physical demise, and delivers it to our next abode that we borrow from God.  The soul carries both our fates and thought patterns, as they both have a close relationship to each other.

Now lets interpret the verse (3-11) above.  The heart/soul functions as sand, as it collects our demerits when we act on our evil thoughts. It acts like the sand in our waste management system in attracting waste and eventually disposing of it. The soul functions to collect our demerits. The soul eventually eliminates the demerits by distributing it back to us as suffering or inconveniences in our lives.  People call this karma or innen.

The mouth is the filter because we have the ability to speak what is in our mind, or suppress it.  The meaning of the mouth includes any actions that we take upon any inconveniences or suffering we may encounter.  We can either act or these inconveniences or suppress them.  Now let us see if we can see the relationship between the soul and the mouth in purifying (filtering) our minds.

The soul collects our demerits and distributes it back as suffering or inconveniences back to us. We can calm our minds and ponder our evil thoughts that brought upon these inconveniences, and not act upon them or we can act upon them. If we act upon our evil thoughts when inconveniences occur, we continue the cycle of suffering. But if we calm our minds and ponder, we can suppress our evil thoughts, and purify our minds.  

Some may say that karma or innen is suffering only; but the soul actually helps us purify our minds, if we use the mouth appropriately! It is this that God refers to in verse 1-1, saying we do not understand the heart/soul.  We can all have the joyous life if we understand the soul.

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Avoiding Blind Faith

People often talk about how faith is important; but blind faith is dangerous. In the Tenrikyo religion, our faith is based on the Ofudesaki.  We believe that these verses come from God.  God tells us that God will use reason to help us.

Kono yo wa rii de semetaru sekai nari

Nanika yorozu o uta no ri de seme 1-21

In this world, I will attack by reason. What appears in the world,

in everything all will be attacked with the reason in verse.

 

God does not want us to have blind faith. God tries to explain everything in the Ofudesaki by reasoning with us. What information is most important for us to understand? God wants us to understand the heart/soul/spirit.  In the first verse is the following:

Yorozuyo no sekai ichiretsu miharasedo

Mune no wakarita mono wa nai kara    1-1 

Looking all over the world and through all ages,

there is no one who understands the heart/soul/spirit.

  

Why is it so important that we understand the heart/soul?  God even classifies people into two different classes. Those who understand the soul are called nihon, and those who do not are classified as kara.

 

Korekara wa kara to nihon no hanashi suru

Nani o yu tomo wakari arumai 2-31

From now on, I will talk about kara and nihon.

You may not understand what I say.

 

Sore shirazu nanto omote kami taru wa

Mune ga wakaran Tsukihi zannen 10-90

Unaware of this, what are you thinking? The high mountains (nihon)

cannot understand the heart. Oh, the regret of God.

 

Also in the first verse (1-1) , most people will define kara as because, but could it also refer to the people who do not understand the soul/heart?

Mune no wakarita mono wa nai  kara   

Understanding the soul/heart is the first requirement that God expects from us. Why is it so important for us to understand the heart/soul?  Understanding the soul helps us understand why we have joy or suffering. We reap what we have sowed because of our own souls/hearts.  This explains karma or innen, but more important by understanding the soul, we can purify our minds and live a joyous life.

God wants us first purify our own minds by understanding the soul/heart. Then God wants us to share the truth of the soul/heart to the people around us (nioigake and hinokishin).  Finally we must have faith in God and Oyasama, which most Tenrikyo have, to perform the Joyous Service.  This is faith based on reason. I believe that faith based on reason will bring people to our places of worship to be saved.

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How Much More Does the World Have to Suffer?

I would like to comment on an article in the Tenrikyo Newsletter. There is some in the church that believe that the progress in spreading our religion has come to a halt or slow progression.  They go back to literature in our history that tell us how our predecessors of the path suffered 20 to 30 years before any progress in spreading our religion. There was a recent lecture by a Reverend in the church that told us that he has given up because his congregation is shrinking in membership. Do we have to wait 20 to 30 years before we see results? Where are the results from our past predecessors?  Or maybe we have to wait for our next lifetime to see results for our efforts.  Can the Bishop be wrong, and that we are not following the instructions given in the Ofudesaki, our most sacred book. Are we delaying the salvation of all mankind?

It is my firm belief that the Ofudesaki gives us the instructions to save the world. We must first purify our own minds by understanding what comes from our own hearts/soul.  God then gives us instructions how to bring people to our places of worship.  We must literally spread our teachings of the soul/heart and God’s teachings first. I believe this is called hinokishin in the Mikagura-uta (1-12).  Then we must pray with the Joyous Service with a pure sincere mind.  On acceptance of our prayer, God will guide these people we have introduced our religion to (hinokishin) to our places of worship. 

How much must the world suffers, while we tell our congregations that God works slowly to our prayers.  Maybe the instructions are in the Ofudesaki. I encourage everyone to study the Ofudesaki to find out. I have created a Tenrikyo Ofudesaki Study Group. https://www.facebook.com/groups/458471844742952/. I encourage everyone to participate in the most important document in the world.

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Why We Need to Understand the Soul

The soul contains our fate and our pattern of thoughts. Our fate is our destiny, or what eventually our bodies are confronted with in life.  Our thought patterns are arrogance, regret, greed, miserliness, and self-love.  We all have these thought patterns in different amounts and combinations in our minds. This is what makes each of us unique.  Both our fate and thought patterns are stored as energy in the isolated soul.

The soul has many functions in the body. It collects, stores, and releases our fate.  It also functions to collect, store, and restore our pattern of thoughts.  Both our fate and our pattern of thoughts have a direct relationship, as one has the potential to cause the other. We all have heard of the phrase, “We reap what we have sowed”. When we act on our negative thought patterns, we create our negative fate, which the soul collects, stores, and eventually releases. We also create our positive fate when we do not act upon these negative thought patterns.

Our physical bodies, our memories, and our possessions are taken away from us with our death; but our pattern of thoughts and our fate are saved and continue for eternity, from one lifetime to another.

We know now that it is our own souls that deliver our fate. We also know that it is our negative thought patterns that create our negative fate by acting upon these thoughts.  How do we remove these negative thought patterns, the source of our sufferings? How do we purify our minds?

God tells us not to react negatively toward these negative events. We must calm our minds and ponder the dusts of greed, arrogance, regret, miserliness and self-love. When we do this, the pathway of these negative thoughts weakens, and we will not create more negative fate associated with these pattern of thoughts. Eventually our minds will become pure, and our souls will be empty of negative fates.  Only joy will be in our future. Unfortunately, some of us will have to experience many obstacles and sufferings before we get to this point of having a pure mind.

But for those who have accumulated much negative fate, can we eliminate fate by somehow purifying the mind without experiencing one suffering after another? It is unfortunate that sometimes we need to suffer, before we can purify our minds. It is easy to act good when life is easy, and without difficulties; but it is when obstacles appear that our real pattern of thoughts appear.  It is our souls that help us realize what thought patterns exists in our minds by releasing our fate.  But for those who have a strong will to purify their minds, God tells us that large misfortunes (fate) become small misfortunes when we try to purify our minds by ourselves.  This will be extremely difficult. God compares these evils as dust on a mirror. When dust is heavy, it stains the mirror, and is difficult to remove. It is the same with the dust (evil) in our minds.  We must remind ourselves that evil thoughts exists in the world, and that there are many people that they have attached to; but it is our souls that have brought these people to us, and our first actions should not be to teach them that they are wrong, but should be to calm our minds first and ponder, and not take any action upon our evil thoughts.

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