2017 New Year Greeting, President of Sekai Kyusei Kyo, Izunome Kyodan, Rev. Kobayashi
Read the teachings with deep intention:
Strive to practice the teachings with the same heart as Meishu‐sama’s
Enveloped in God and Meishu‐sama’s light and Kyoshu‐sama’s prayers, I express my deepest gratitude that we are able to greet this fresh, new year.
We have been given a teaching for the New Year, entitled “The Beliefs of Sekai Kyusei Kyo.” In the opening, Meishu‐sama teaches us, “The Supreme God, the Creator of the universe, has planned for the establishment of Paradise on Earth from the very beginning of time. Throughout the ages, God has been working toward its fulfillment.” (Teachings of Meishu‐sama, Vol. 4 )
■ The light that illuminates the dark world
At present, Japan is faced with various issues such as a prolonged economic slump, unease about
the pension system, social withdrawal of youth and bullying. Abroad, there are innumerable problems to solve such as the intensification of terrorism stemming from differences in religion and nationality and instability of international order.
In regards to this, Meishu‐sama says in the teaching entitled, “The Door to the Mystery has been Opened:” “I advocate the construction of Paradise on Earth. However, this particular concept is not an original idea on my part. The Daylight age has arrived, and God has revealed His plan to me and endowed me with the spiritual aptitude to bring this goal to be fully realized.” Meishu‐sama continues, “He instructed me to work towards its fruition, and this gift of spiritual intelligence has given me the keen power of discernment, which I have put into writing.”
Meishu‐sama wrote the poem, “The true nature of past, present, and future – now completely clear, told through this priceless teaching of salvation”. This teaching on eternal salvation, at the forefront of other religious teachings, was granted to us; that alone tells us of the great mission we have received.
Meishu‐sama also wrote the poem, “What I write is the torchlight for those wandering on the dark path.” In the world of darkness, Meishu‐sama says that it is the teachings themselves that lead to salvation for those roaming about in total confusion.
■ Is your soul truly seeking light?
In the dictated manuscripts of the teachings, Meishu‐sama exerted his utmost until he could find the plainest way of explaining them. At most, he would polish the manuscripts more than twenty times. Furthermore, he had his close assistants read them. Meishu‐sama would ask, even seek criticism, “Do you understand the meaning? Would the members understand this expression? What do you think?” This was because, to put it simply, of his wish for the happiness and salvation of all.
With that depth of thought, consequently, when his close assistants would make mistakes, he
would regularly, strictly warn them, “Are you reading the teachings?” “Since the power of purification is intensifying, no matter how busy you are, read at least 30 minutes each day.” “If you neglect to study the teachings, you will begin to notice a loss in spiritual strength.”
Meishu‐sama says, “I advise you to read them [the teachings] as much as possible. The more you read, the deeper your faith will become and the more cleansed your spiritual being will be…The more your spiritual understanding advances, the more you are drawn to the teachings, until you are studying them with a new intensity and fervor. It is good to read them over and over again, until you find they have become an integral part of your being.”
This “studying with a new intensity and fervor” is the barometer of our spiritual growth. This is because our soul is strongly seeking light; if this feeling does not well up inside of us, there is something within our spirit that is afraid of the light.
■ ReadPracticeProveGratitude: Repeat over and over again
Meishu‐sama’s teachings covered a wide range of subjects, sometimes coming from a high‐level
standpoint, at other times from a familiar view point, adapting to the time, to the other party, to various situations. If you become bound to one part of the teachings or try to force it into your circumstances, you end up distorting the true meaning of Meishu‐sama’s teachings.
It is often said that “One understands the teachings according to the level of their spirit.” Just because you have read through the teachings once, does not mean it is fine. Reading again and again, over the course of a lifetime, each time deepening your understanding is important.
Furthermore, because Meishu‐sama says that “Sekai Kyusei Kyo is a practical religion,” “to meet, listen and Johrei” is a matter of course. If a teaching is indeed one that you understand, it can be immediately put into practice in your daily life. By doing so, most importantly, you can strive to create an abundantly happy and prosperous home.
I pray that we may have a year where each one of us, in the process of repeating, “ReadPractice ProveGratitude,” be allowed to deepen our faith.
As my greeting to you this new year, I pray for all of you, for your success in your activities and for your every happiness.