The Jiba is the place of origin of human creation, and the Kanrodai is set up as proof of the conception of humankind. It is the Home of the Parent, which is the original home for all human beings throughout the world. It is also where God the Parent, our original Parent, resides, and the everliving Oyasama remains to work for salvation.
Moreover, at the Jiba, the Kagura Service is performed around the Kanrodai. The Ofudesaki tells us:
Because the Jiba of Origin and the causality of origin exist, Tsukihi works freely and unlimitedly.
The Jiba is the place where God the Parent works for universal salvation. The Jiba is truly the center of our faith and the place for salvation. This is found in the Book of the Besseki:
The Doctrine of Tenrikyo tells us:
Indeed, Tenri-O-no-Mikoto, Oyasama, and the Jiba are one in truth. Only when we accept this truth can the path of single-hearted salvation leading to the Joyous Life be fulfilled.
This is the central point of our faith.
The most fundamental teaching for us followers is taught in this passage. I believe that those three are one in truth in terms of the origin of human creation, the core of our faith, and the source of salvation. This "one in truth" is not complete if any one of them is missing. What we have to do in our life of faith as well as for the salvation of others is to always keep this teaching in mind and do the actual work [of Yoboku]. We also have to reflect on our daily lives and make sure that we pay respect and express appreciation every night and day to Tenri-O-no-Mikoto for the blessings we receive and also see to it that our minds are always bound to Oyasama's mind and the Jiba.
A Divine Direction teaches us:
What is called the origin, the Jiba, is not found anywhere else in the world.
Osashizu, October 11, 1895
Also, another Divine Direction tells us:
Because the one truth exists at the Jiba, peace will reign in the world. The Jiba exists, therefore peace will reign in the world.
Osashizu, July 2, 1888
Peace shall reign because the Jiba exists. Receiving the truth of the Jiba, local churches exist and are blessed with their prosperity.
Because of the origin [of human creation], the present world exists. Because of the origin, we human beings exist. Because the Jiba [of Origin] exists, our faith exists.
Always keeping our minds connected with Tenri-O-no-Mikoto, Oyasama, and the Jiba, we are required to make a new start by returning to the origin [of human creation] and know what the origin really is to us.
Let me share with you another thought. The most urgent task given to each one of us while proceeding to the next milestone is to nurture the successors to the path. We are taught that the path continues to be followed. The vertical mission, that is to say, transmitting the path to coming generations, is the most important task not only for each church but also for each one of us when we think of the future of the path.
I am the principal of Tenri Kyoko Gakuen High School, which opened last year by merging two existing high schools into one. I feel that our future will not be very bright unless we dedicate our sincerity to nurturing the successors to the path. At the same time, I also feel that this problem is rather critical and not as easy as we may think and say. In fact, especially in the today's society where there is a bewildering variety of values, which may cause confusion, and where the number of children is decreasing, nurturing young people is not an easy task because it does not produce an immediate result. It will surely be hard work that will require time and patience. However, a Divine Direction teaches us:
People will grow if you nurture them. Unless you nurture them, they will not grow.
Osashizu, March 23, 1891
People will grow if you nurture them. Nurturing requires sincerity. Sincerity is caring. Caring is fertilizing. Listen and understand well.
Osashizu, June 24, 1890
To advance our nurturing work, in the first place, we must have a fervent desire and make a sincere effort to transmit the path to them. Another Divine Direction teaches us:
In this Path, faith must be reflected in the minds of children while they are still young. It will not do to wait until they are older. It must be difficult for them to follow the Path if the mundane world is reflected in their minds and if their lives are based on matters of the mundane world.
Osashizu, November 16, 1900
Before teaching common sense and basic knowledge, parents must reflect their minds to the minds of their children while they are young.
Of course, the vertical mission, which is nurturing the successors to the path, is salvation work that we must proudly conduct. In my opinion, nurturing activities should precede any other activities. The truth of the Jiba is an important point for nurturing work. We are taught in a Divine Direction:
The Home of the Parent, Home of the Parent. If you do not convey the truth of the Parent to the world, it will not be saved.
Osashizu, June 17, 1890
Also in another Divine Direction, we are taught:
If you receive the truth of the Parent in all matters, the same clear skies are there at all times, I tell you.
Osashizu, October 24, 1895
In order to receive the blessings of God the Parent, it is important for us to return to Jiba as well as to keep our minds always connected with the Jiba. Therefore, I believe that always keeping our minds connected with the Jiba and visiting local churches, which receive the truth of the Jiba, are quite important for not only strengthening our faith but also nurturing the successors to the path. In [The] Anecdotes of Oyasama, we find:
Shirobei Umetani returned to the Residence with his five or six-year-old son, Umejiro, in 1882 or 1883. When they were received by Oyasama, who was wearing Her red garments, Umejiro said, "Daruma-san, Daruma-san." He must have recalled the red-clad daruma doll in the well-known advertisement for tobacco of that period. Shirobei was so embarrassed that he did not take Umejiro along the next time he returned to the Residence. Then Oyasama asked:
"What happened to Umejiro? The path will be cut off."
After Shirobei received these words, Umejiro always returned happily to the Residence with his father and mother.
Anecdotes of Oyasama, no. 117
The Jiba is the Home of the Parent. Oyasama lives eternally here and is waiting for Her children to return happily to the Jiba. We will be able to make spiritual growth by receiving the truth of the Parent.
The Oyasama 120th Anniversary Students Rally in Jiba will be held later on this month. The Oyasama 120th Anniversary Children's Pilgrimage to Jiba, which is expected to attract more participants than the average year, will be held this summer. The purpose of returning to Jiba is, of course, neither attending events held here nor just contributing to giving a lively atmosphere here. We return to Jiba, yearning for the Parent, to bring the fruits of our efforts in growing spiritually. For the sake of the future path, it is important for us to take advantage of the year of the anniversary to bring as many children of the path as possible back to Jiba with us.
The Shinbashira concluded his sermon by saying:
We are, as we agreed before, considering this year as the year of the 120th Anniversary of Oyasama, and we are committed throughout the year to giving expression to the results of the efforts we have made in anticipation of the anniversary. Let all of us perform our tasks in such a way as to ensure that the Home of the Parent always has a lively atmosphere with many people returning to Jiba and that this year will be a significant year that will provide a springboard for a new departure.
Because of the efforts made by us Tenrikyo followers, we have been blessed with a lot more people returning to the Home of the Parent than last year. We are very grateful for that. I would like to conclude my sermon by asking all of you to reflect on the origin [of human creation] to take a new step for a new departure with our minds refreshed and, at the same time, by pledging together to continue our endeavor to be blessed with a lively atmosphere in the Home of the Parent, lay the foundation for our spiritual growth, and walk the path joyously and spiritedly.
Thank you very much for your attention.
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