TENRIKYO PEARL CHURCH SERMON ‘ 2005 July
Good morning! I would like to thank you all for your kind support and sincere offerings. I am sure that God the Parent and Oyasama is pleased to see you today to participate in this July Monthly Service 2005.
They say, if you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything. How true. Well, if you don’t have your health, basically you’re dead and if you’re sick in bed, you can hardly do anything no matter how much you have, except perhaps your faith. And those of us, who are healthy, don’t think too much about it. We’re so busy; we kind of take it for granted. Then when we become sick, we wonder why. Today’s sermon will explore the root causes of illness and its solutions.
The Root Cause of Illness
Last month we talked about science proving the effectiveness of prayer. Today let’s talk about the root causes of illness.
Good health is such a precious commodity. If it could be bought, I would suppose it could command a very high price. Perhaps that’s why health care costs keep rising. They keep coming up with new machines and new medication.
But when we’re healthy, we hardly think about how precious this health is. We just go about in our daily lives, doing the things that normal people do, working and playing. We tend to lose the sense of gratitude, the sense of amazement about our ‘borrowed’ bodies and then basically take our health for granted. It’s only when we get sick for a long time, that we have a chance to realize, ‘Hey, isn’t it great to be healthy.’
Everybody, take a deep breath, through your nose. Doesn’t that feel great? Remember, when you have a running nose and it’s stuck with mucus and you have a hard time breathing? Especially when you have this condition for a long time, don’t you wish, you could breathe easy again? Now breathe deep again and say thank you God!
In that sense, I think it’s good to be sick once in a while. It reminds us to be thankful. But how about those who have chronic conditions or terminal illness such as kidney disease, heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and so on? They are suffering a great deal.
In the Service we have just completed: in Song 10, Verses 7-10. Let’s read together:
Seventh, Suffering comes from your own mind.
So you must reproach yourself.
Eighth, Though illness is so trying,
No one has ever known its origin.
Ninth, Until this time all of you equally
Have been ignorant of the origin of illness.
Finally, This time, it has been revealed.
The origin of illness lies in your own mind.
From this we can say that the root cause of illness comes from our mind. Then if we get rid of our mind then there will be no illness. True, but we would be just like vegetables. So what is it in our mind that causes illness?
Yes! Mental dust! In the Ofudesaki we read:
There is nothing at all which should be called illness.
It is only because there are paths of the mistaken mind. III: 95
These paths are miserliness, covetousness,
self-love, greed, and arrogance. They are the dusts. III: 96
Whatever pains, sufferings, tumors, fevers,
or looseness of the bowels: all are from dust. IV: 110
Indicating no one in the world in particular, I say to you:
dust in the mind causes disorders of the body. V: 9
I was searching the internet the other day on the subject of prayer and healing. I found one sponsored by an individual named Bryan Farnum an ‘intuitive scientist’ under the website ‘onlygodheals.com’ who claims to be a prophet delivering messages from God to empower human beings with ‘information and understanding about the spiritual side to our lives in order to bring about health, harmony and peace.’
At first I was skeptical, but the more I read, the more it seemed to be very similar to Tenrikyo but was saying it in different words. Bryan Farnum claims to be Christian but the message is more like Tenrikyo.
In his 12 step healing prayer for chronic illnesses he mentions: that the prayer will ‘help remove ancestral ‘ill gene memory’ behavior programs which contribute to ancestral blood line diseases, which are passed to future generations through human genes.’ This is similar to Tenrikyo’s how to cut one’s bad causality.
He also instructs: ‘Ask God to remove all anger and ask God to remove all gene memory of you feeling unworthy.’ This is similar to asking God to sweep away your mental dust and to cut one’s negative causality.
In Step One, he also mentions to ‘sincerely believe that God is the ultimate power over all Creation.’ This goes to our teaching of a thing lent, a thing borrowed and that we are kept alive by God’s grace.
Next he says that ‘there is a bigger picture and it’s best to show unconditional respect to all, regardless of their religious beliefs. God carefully matches a religion to one’s spiritual journey, of one’s Soul/inner personality, prior to coming into human existence. God loves all of His creation, regardless of one’s faith; therefore, it is wise for mankind to love all, regardless of one’s faith. This matches Tenrikyo. We are all brothers and sisters, there is no one who is an utter stranger. He says, ‘Anger/ revenge is the leading cause of most cancers worldwide.’ This again, is similar Tenrikyo’s teaching: ‘dust of the mind causes disorders of the body.’
In Step Two, he says, ‘Do not believe for a second that God may not heal you. You must be sincere, you must believe, you must make a real strong effort; you must know that you are worthy.’ In the Mikagura-uta, Song Six
First, Human minds are so deeply doubtful.
Seventh, However eagerly you may believe,
Never entertain wrong thoughts!
Eighth, After all you must continue to believe,
If you entertain wrong thoughts, you are to start anew!
Ninth, Having believed thus far until now,
You should be shown your merit.
These verses tell us that we must believe and never entertain wrong thoughts of doubt and skepticism. This sounds so familiar to Bryan Farnum’s ‘Do not believe for a second that God may not heal you. ‘You must be sincere, you must believe.’ The ninth verse will erase any unworthiness you may feel.
In Step Four Mr. Farnum says to ‘acknowledge all pain and suffering we have caused others.’ He says to make a list of events in our life, going back to childhood, where we may have hurt someone through our actions, spoken words and or thoughts: negative incidents surrounding events such as birth, marriage, divorce, abortion, killing animals for sport, death of a family members, adoption, sexual abuse, adultery, leaving home, moving away from parents, etc. When we are able to write down these incidents, this in a way is realizing what our bad causality is.
In Step Five he says that ‘we must show remorse and walk the very narrow pathway to God’s truth. Do not look for excuses. Simply admit you did wrong and move on. Man must learn to settle differences other than through revenge.’
In Step Seven he says to ‘understand why. Why do the good die young sometimes? Why do bad things happen to good people? In most cases, this is settling the bloodline spiritual debts. This is similar to the Ofudesaki verse:
If you let your debts pile up,
a path of oxen and horses will finally appear. VIII: 54
This is why it is wise not to hurt anyone, in any way: through ill actions, ill spoken words and ill thoughts. You unknowingly, may have created a spiritual debt, which usually has to be paid in the fourth generation or further ahead in your bloodline; meaning some people come into this world who are already scripted by God to be the instrument to settle a bloodline debt. Not one of us will ‘get away’ with hurting another.
The good news, we can stop the hurt and we can stop the accumulation of the spiritual debt. The real key is not to break any of the commandments of God. We have free will to say no. So if we have a thought that is saying to us, ‘Hurt the person’. By understanding God’s classroom, by understand-ing that we are students in God’s classroom, by understanding if we follow through with hurt towards another. We have created a spiritual debt. Even if you came into the world to balance the bloodline score of one who hurt your ancestors: you still blew it, because you could have said ‘No’, you could have forgiven the person who hurt you.
So those negative thoughts that you get from time to time, is more than likely a spiritual debt, you being the instrument, to carry out the balancing of the bloodlines. Instead, when you get that desire to hurt someone; quickly reverse it, saying to yourself, ‘Father, I will not hurt this person, I will forgive this person and the person’s bloodline for any pain suffering they have caused my bloodlines.’ This is important. Now, when you do this, you are getting double points in your student class records.’
In Tenrikyo, this is how we cut our bad causality from our previous lives.
In Step Twelve, the last step, he says, ‘Make a commitment to help others. When we make a commitment to help others, we are helping to balance out our own ill acts, ill spoken words and our own ill thoughts. Everyday of your remaining life, commit to God, to God’s math equation, that you will think of others first and that you will spend the rest of your life doing good for others.
There are many, that receiving a healing only for the healing to be taken away. Do not go back to your ill ways and do not take your healing for granted. Do not blame anyone for your suffering; not even your ancestors. There is still so much to share to all of you. It must be done on God’s time. May God bless you and heal you. May you feel God’s warmth of love going through your body.
When we receive the Truth of Sazuke to be able to administer the Sazuke to those suffering from illness, we make a promise (a commitment) to help others. And this is the reason why it is so important to make and keep your resolutions. The resolutions are your commitment to help others.
In the Ofudesaki Part VIII: 4
To Tsukihi, all of you throughout the world are my children,
My only desire is to save you.
Any salvation whatever, is all through the Service.
If only you do just as Tsukihi says. VII: 83
If only the dust are cleanly swept away,
then I shall work marvelous salvation. III: 98
Through the service we purify our mind and through the Sazuke we can save others. And by saving others we shall be saved. And I believe, I believe in God’s great working.
Thank you for your kind attention.
1. I would like to thank those who came to help out at the annual picnic on July 4th. Thank you very much!
2. We are in the last year before the 120th Anniversary of Oyasama and I would like to ask all of you to participate by returning to Jiba in 2006. We hope to form a pilgrimage group for the children’s summer pilgrimage and hope that many of you can join us. However, you can return anytime during the year and I or Mrs. Nakao will accompany you. We are continuing our Jiba Pilgrimage fundraising by offering yard services, so if you know of anyone who needs yard cleaning, please let us know.
3. This year’s Hawaii Shuyokai (Spiritual Development Course) will end on Saturday, July 16th. Lewis is presently attending the course.
4. The 2005 Children’s Pilgrimage will depart from July 19 and return on July 30. I will be going as chairman of the Hawaii Boy’s and Girl’s Association.
TENRIKYO PEARL CHURCH SERMON ‘ 2005 July