TENRIKYO PEARL CHURCH SERMON 2004 March Monthly Service
Good morning! I would like to thank you all for your kind support and sincere offerings. I am confident that God the Parent and Oyasama are pleased that you are present here today to participate in this March Monthly Service.
THE WAY TO CURE ILLNESS
When people are born and mature in a healthy body, we’re not supposed to become ill, but rather we supposed to live the normal span of life. But why do we become sick or ill? In the Ofudesaki, Part III: 93, it says:
If this origin is known in detail,
There should be no cause for illness.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines a healthy person as a person consisting of a healthy body, a healthy spirit and healthy social conditions. However, no matter how these three conditions are present in its most perfect sense, if the person is always angry, holding grudges, and hating people, this person will become ill sooner or later. This is what Dr. Shigeo Haruyama says in his book, ‘A Great Revolution in the Brain World. In the Ofudesaki III: 95 and 96, we read:
There is nothing at all which should be called illness,
It is only because there are paths of the mistaken mind.
These paths are miserliness, covetousness,
Self-love, greed, and arrogance. They are dust.
So we are taught that illness comes from our mind. When we think positive saying to ourselves: ‘How happy I am or how lucky I am, it could have been worse. I think I’m blessed compared to other people less fortunate.’ When we are in a positive thought, we will receive (+) energy. On the other hand, if we think negative thoughts such as, ‘I hate it! I’m suffering,’ and blame others. Then the (-) negative energy will flow, meaning that, unpleasant things will come to us. Unpleasant feelings, illness, accidents, conflict with others and depression will come to us and make us unhappy.
I have talked about stress in the past and how stress affects our body. When we feel, ‘Oh, how I hate it,’ this causes stress, in other words, anxiety, worry, dissatisfaction, hatred, jealousy and an inferiority complex. These negative thoughts increase our stress and bring about illness.
Those people, who have a habit of thinking positive, they hardly become ill. Louise Hay, author of the book called, ‘You Can Heal Your Life,’ says that all illness comes from resentment. She asks those people who are ill, whether they have any resentment toward anyone. In her book, she says: I find that resentment, criticism, guilt and fear cause more problems than anything else. To release the past we must be willing to forgive. In the Ofudesaki I: 53:
Among humankind, there is no one who is evil,
It is only a bit of dust stuck on.
God uses dust as a metaphor for negative thinking.
In this Teaching, our body is a thing lent, a thing borrowed from God. In short, this body is our body, but since it is borrowed from God, we do not have complete control. For instance, when we experience a burn, a cut, scrape, pain or old age, we cannot stop these. However we can use our minds freely. It is important that we be able to make adjustments to the way we think. When we can adjust our negative minds to think positively we can overcome illness.
In the Ofudesaki III: 98
If only the dust is cleanly swept away,
Then I shall work marvelous salvation.
For example: If you have a child who has been allowed to stay up late as long as she/he wishes for a long time and then you make a decision, that you now want this child to go to bed at 8pm every night, what do you think the first night will be like.
The child will rebel against this new rule and may kick and scream and do her best to stay out of bed. If you relent at this time, the child wins and will try to control you forever.
However, if you calmly stick to your decision and firmly insist that this is the new bed time, the rebellion will lessen. In two or three nights, the new routine will be established.
It is the same thing with your mind. Of course, it will rebel at first. It does not want to be retrained. But you are in control, and if you stay focused and firm, in a very short time the new way of thinking will be established and you will feel so good to realize that you are not a helpless victim of your own thoughts, but rather master of your own mind.
Your body is borrowed, but your mind is yours to use as you wish. Whatever you think in your mind is your habit. If you believe that it is difficult to change your habit, then your choice of this thought will make it true for you. If you would choose to think, ‘It is becoming easier for me to make changes,’ then your choice of this thought will make that true for you. If you get into the habit of thinking positive and accept whatever happens in a positive light, then you can overcome your bad habits. It is not that easy, but we should try to control our mind and stop thinking those old thoughts.
I know everyone is busy and very tired at the end of the day, but I found this to be very helpful to me. Just before going to bed, think of your dreams, your future plans and also think of your happy and pleasant times. This will help to refresh your mind and release you from thinking negative. Also, doing the service will help to sweep away your mental dust and help to develop a mind of gratitude.
Finally, in the Ofudesaki II: 7
Illness and pain of whatever kind do not exist,
They are none other than the hastening and guidance of God.
PASTOR’S JOYOUS LIFE LECTURE IN AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND
At the request of the Church Headquarters, Overseas Department, I had the opportunity to travel to Brisbane, Perth, Sydney and Melbourne in Australia and Auckland, New Zealand, introducing Tenrikyo and sharing my faith with people, both new to the faith, Tenrikyo followers and their friends. I departed from Jiba on February 26th and returned to Hawaii on March 8th for a total of eleven days.
At Brisbane I stayed at the Tenrikyo Oceania Center headed by Rev. Masafumi Adachi who then accompanied me to the various locations. The weather was warm and similar to Hawaii. I also engaged in nioigake four times in both Australia and New Zealand and I found the people to be very warm and friendly just like Hawaii. The language was English but they speak with a British accent. The cities such as Sydney, Auckland and Melbourne are very cosmopolitan like Hawaii with people of different races: not only Chinese, Filipino, Korean, and Japanese, but also, Thai, Indonesian and Indian from India. Australia is a big country with a lot of wide flat land. It is located in the southern hemisphere so their seasons are opposite from us. Here in Hawaii we are in spring approaching summer, but in Australia and New Zealand they are in fall approaching winter. At night in Brisbane, when the sky was clear, I was able to see the Milky Way for the first time and the Southern Cross which is four stars forming a cross and can only be seen in the southern hemisphere. These stars are also happen to be part of the Australian and New Zealand national flags.
1. I will be departing again for Jiba from March 21st through June 30th serving as the Shuyoka English calls instructor for 3 months at Jiba.
2. Pearl Church renovations Phase I will began on February 9th and will end on March 21st. Installing an emergency exit staircase and building a new garage closet. Phase II is widening, the front stairs, installing a wall in the sanctuary will begin on July 1, after I return from Jiba. I request for your assistance and support during my absence.
3. The Dendocho March Monthly Service will be held next Sunday at 9am.
4. The Dendocho Nioigake Day will be held on following day, Monday, at 9am.
5. The weekly service practices every Thursday night will be suspended until after the construction is complete.
6. Later this month the BGA Spring Camp will be held on March 26th through 28th (that would be Friday through Sunday).
As always, I encourage all of you to take advantage of these opportunities for further spiritual growth, which is the path of the joyous life.
TENRIKYO PEARL CHURCH SERMON 2004 March Monthly Service