Important Relationship Between Ancestral Spirits and Us


An ancestral spirit is a soul after all. You’re a soul, too. The only difference between the two is whether to have a physical body in this World of Reality. You cannot say one is better than the other. They both are travellers on the way to the Original God.

  • anestral 先祖の
  • soul 魂
  • whether to~ 〜するかどうか
  • on the way to A Aに行く途中の

We, before going on a trip called a life, made a rough plan about the course of our lives based on the amount of money we saved or owed, and left. God might have told you that it’s better not to take such a dangerous, hard course. But you might have dared to set off on a budget travel to experience the scenery of the World of Reality.

  • go on a trip   旅に出る
  • rough    大まかな
  • based 基いて
  • amount 量
  • dare to~   あえて〜する
  • set off on A Aを始める
  • budget travel    貧乏旅行
  • scenery    風景

Once you have reached the point of no return, however, you wonder why you’re walking alone, and are always watching other travellers passing by with envy who ride on carriages.

  • once S+V いったんSがVすれば
  • the point of no return    引き返すことができない場所
  • with envy 羨ましそうに
  • carriage 馬車

You had already known that there would be stones or obstacles on the “way” you’re supposed to go, or a spiritual line of your family line. The purpose of your life is to get over those obstacles with you experiencing joy, anger, grief and pleasure and to join a big, big road.

  • obstacle 障害物
  • purpose 目的
  • get over A Aを乗り越える
  • joy   喜び
  • anger 怒り
  • grief 哀しみ
  • pleasure 楽しみ

If you go down your way striding over the stones to avoid them, you’ll end up going back the same way on the way and find that you haven’t progressed an inch.

  • stride over A Aを跨ぐ
  • end up~ing 結局は〜することになる
  • on the way 途中で
  • progress 進む

Many people run out of the budget of the journey because of the way of living before joining the big road. But if they realize their situations on the way, they can increase the budget by having faith of gratitude as long as they live. It is ideal that looking back later, you’ll find the way which first appeared to be steep has turned into a beautiful one.

  • run out of A Aがなくなる
  • because of A  Aのために
  • realize 気がつく
  • increase 増加させる
  • faith 信仰
  • gratitude 感謝
  • ideal 理想的な
  • appear to be ~   〜であるように見える
  • steep   険しい
  • turn into A Aに変わる

Well, you had better not cling to each stone as an obstacle. If you want to know each stone’s color, shape and the reason for existence, you cannot walk fast and your life will soon be over. If you cling to them, there is no end. All you have to do is walk, clearing the road of the stones without thinking. As long as you walk checking the position of the sun in the sky, you cannot be mistaken in the direction of your walk.

  • cling 執着する
  • existence 存在
  • be over 終わる
  • All you have to do is ~ あなたは〜しさえすればよい
  • clear A of B AからBを取り除く
  • direction 方向

You don’t need a memorial tablet for each of the deceased in the way of Ise-Hakusan Dou. If you cling to each dead person, he/she will have difficulty giving up their attachment to this world. You need to have the courage to send them away with smile and gratitude, smothering your grief, don’t you think ?

  • memorial tablet 位牌
  • the deceased   故人
  • have difficulty ~ing 〜するのに苦労する
  • attachment 執着
  • courage 勇気
  • send A away Aを送り出す
  • smother 抑える

You have to let your ancestral spirits and the ones related to you set off along the way of their surname. Ancestral spirits who have already gone through the way never fail to take care of other spirits who are supposed to go down the same way before they set off on a new journey in order to repay an obligation, too.

  • relatated 関係した
  • surname 氏名
  • never fail to~   必ず〜する
  • in order to~   〜するために
  • repay an obligation 恩返しする

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます


Thank you so much for keeping us alive.

You are the result of a baton of life having been passed narrowly.


As the cost of graves has been increasing, it might be difficult for ordinary people to get a new one. When I die, I’d like my family to dispose of my ashes at a crematory and just make a black wooden memorial tablet with the golden words “THE PLACE FOR ANCESTRAL SPIRITS OF SO AND SO FAMILY” written on it, instead of a Tanzaku, a short strip of paper.

  • grave 墓
  • increase 増加する
  • ordinary 普通の
  • dispose 処分する
  • ash 灰
  • creamtatory    火葬場
  • memorial tablet 位牌
  • instead of A Aの代わりに

And I’ve been telling my family to write the year of my death, my age, my name and my simple personal history in a notebook made from Japanese paper as a necrology and put it beside the memorial tablet. My family wants to buy a small grave, though. These things should be left to fortune or karma and are nothing you worry about.

  • necrology 過去帳
  • leave A to B AをBに任せる
  • fortune 運

Holding memorial services has a really deep meaning. Tracing back to your ancestors, you can reach the origin of human beings ultimately. You can never stop at your own ancestors only. If you keep on holding memorial services for your ancestors with “gratitude for being kept alive” being the key, the memorial service becomes the one for all human beings and things and a paean to great nature.

  • memorial service 供養
  • meaning 意味
  • trace back to A Aをたどる
  • ancestor 先祖
  • ultimately 究極的には
  •  keep on ~ing 〜し続ける
  • gratitude 感謝の気持ち
  • keep A alive Aを生かしておく
  • paean 賛歌

If you’re in this state of mind,  you wouldn’t care if your memorial service is effective or not. You’ll find yourself holding it just because you cannot help feeling grateful for your existence.

  • state 状態
  • effective 効果がある
  • grateful 感謝に満ちた
  • existence 存在

When you’re worried about the effectiveness of your memorial service, you must be thinking at heart “I did it for you, so what can I get in return?”expecting some profit. If you’re so, you won’t be able to keep on doing it.

  • at heart 心では
  • in return お返しに
  • profit 利益

If your memorial services do have effect on your ancestral spirits, you can keep on doing it naturally. On the other hand, if your memorial services don’t have any effect on them, you’ll stop doing it somehow.

  • have effect on A Aに影響を与える
  • naturally 自然に
  • on the other hand 一方
  • somehow どういうわけか

We’re living now. But living things die easily. Just a simple carelessness can cost you your life. It is “you”, living now, that the result of a baton of life like a fragile, easy to disappear tightrope, having been passed from ancestor to ancestor. What are you complain about?

  • carelessness 不注意
  • result 結果
  • baton バトン
  • frigile 脆い
  • disappear 消える
  • complain  不平を言う

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます


Thank you so much for keeping us alive.