Mijo and Jijo

What do "mijo" and "jijo" mean in Tenrikyo?

The term "mijo" has two meanings. It may refer to the body, which we are taught is something God the Parent lends us so that we can be alive. Or it may refer to bodily disorders. Tenrikyo stresses that the human body, whether it is in good health or not, is a thing lent by God, a thing borrowed from God, and that it is sustained by God's providence.

"Jijo" refers to all things and events that concern our mijo including various situations and conditions that occur in our daily life. An important thing to note here is that any happening, whether considered desirable or undesirable, is shown by God the Parent and that we should feel gratitude to God, realizing God's deep parental love and wondrous blessings in whatever happens.

Illnesses and other problems--though we may at times find ourselves suffering from them or worrying about them--are really to be seen as manifestations of the warm parental love of God the Parent, who is trying to nurture us. We should accept the parental love with a feeling of joy and respond to it spiritedly in our daily life.

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What is meant by saying that "illness and other troubles are divine guidance"?

Most people's immediate concerns do not usually include entering a path of faith. When they suffer from illnesses or face other unexpected troubles, however, they may stop to reflect on their way of living and perhaps try to seek a true way of living. They are likely to consider why they have encountered the problems, whether illnesses, calamities, or any other unexpected troubles. Eventually, they may come to realize that illnesses and other troubles are divine guidance through which God the Parent tries to lead them toward the Joyous Life with parental love. As a consequence, they may even start to follow the path to seek God the Parent's intention and try to find true happiness.

In this sense, we refer to illness and other troubles as divine guidance.

Illness and pain of whatever kind do not exist. They are none other than the hastening and guidance of God.

Ofudesaki II:7

(This article was excerpted from Questions and Answers about Tenrikyo, 187-188.)