Those who can Have Consideration for What is Invisible are Spiritually Virtuous

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If you’ve been able to hold memorial services for your ancestors for more than one year, even with a few breaks, I recommend you to set a household shinto altar at your house to enshrine Kamifuda(神札), a kind of amulet provided by a shinto shrine, in. That you can continue doing it means you have consideration for invisible beings, which is rare and valuable.

  • break 休止
  • recommend 勧める
  • enshrine 祭る
  • consideration 思いやり
  • invisible 見えない

For example, when you share something with someone in neighborhood, you’re expecting at heart that the person will give you something in return in the future. But when you hold a memorial service or pray to God, you can’t see the object.  Therefore,

● You can’t be sure if you could make yourself understood.

● You can’t be sure if your deed is effective or not.

● You may think what you’re doing is selfish or uselss.

  • share 分かち合う
  • in return お返しに
  • object 対象
  • effective 効果的な

Sometimes you may worry about these. But this is the very reason why your deed is very valuable and admirable. In fact, it’s easy to do something for visible reactions. Anyone can do it. This is nothing but an expedient action for you to receive something in return. You may be able to hold memorial services for a short period of time as an experiment, even with concern about the possibility of their being meaningless, but you couldn’t keep on doing it long without your mercy or kindness. Many of you aren’t aware of your virtue. Some might think you’re able to continue holding memorial services because of your greed. But this is not true. Being able to hold memorial services for your ancestors shows that you’re a righteous person. The continuation is the proof. No one can deny the fact that you hold memorial services continuously.

  • admirable 立派な
  • expedient 功利的な
  • mercy 慈悲心
  • virtue 美徳
  • greed 欲
  • righteous 正しい

Those who only believe in something recognizable or perceivable may think that memorial services for ancestors are nothing but superstition and worthless. Such people are likely to take only expedient actions for themselves in everyday lives. They try to avoid worthless things .

  • recognizable 認識できる
  • perveivable 知覚できる
  • superstition 迷信

More often than not, however, you are not aware that you’re taken care of by someone without knowing it nor that you’re annoying someone. Those who can’t care about what they’re not aware of will miss the chance to be happy or, even if their dreams come true, they will lose something important in exchange. This is a law of the universe.

  • more often than not しばしば
  • annoy 悩ませる
  • in exchange 交換に

Those who can take care of what is invisible and hiding are spiritually virtuous. They can’t see nor understand God. They can’t be sure of how effective their memorial services for ancestral spirits are, but still they hold memorial services and express their gratitude to God just because they are grateful for having been kept alive. What matters is this kind of attitude. Those who can practice holding memorial services for their ancestors are those who can be considerate of others in the real world, too. They are kind at heart.

  • virtuous 徳のある
  • graitude 感謝の気持ち
  • grateful  感謝して
  • attitude 考え方
  • considerate 思いやりのある

Many self-claimed professionals assert that since ancestral spirits have no power, worshipping gods is the most important. The true God would avoid such people who abandon the weak, their ancestral spirits, and try to make approaches to God, saying “God, please,” for they believe in the logic of the strong like animals. Their attitude is the proof that they’re not connected with the true God. God will approach on its own those who try to help the weak.

  • assert 主張する
  • the logic of the strong 強者の論理
  • connect 繋げる

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます

I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

Thank you so much for keeping me/us alive.

Memorial Services for Ancestors can be the Practice of Being Considerate to Others

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In offering the third incense stick to ancestral spirits during a memorial service,  some people worry about how they should call to their ancestors. But, in fact, on remembering your ancestors during the service, you can console them immediately. It doesn’t matter how you call to them. In the spirit world, no sooner do you remember the face of your ancestor than you can get your consideration across to him/her.

  • call to A  Aに呼びかける
  • console 慰める
  • consideration 思いやり

I myself sometimes remember a face of the deceased whose name I’ve forgotten. But just remembering his face or figure will make him rest in peace for sure. Around the anniversary of his death, I sometimes remember him with a smile on his face. Names in this world are no longer important for spiritual beings in the other dimensions. Posthumous Buddhist names don’t have any meaning, either. To adhere to forms could cause your memorial services to be superficial and ineffective like the ones held by conventional religions that have already lost their practical spiritual power.

  • the deceased 故人
  • anniversary of one’s death 命日
  • posthumous 死後の
  • ineffective 効果のない
  • conventional 従来の

Even if you tried to say all of the names of spirits related to you when you offer the third incense stick, the names you can remember would be very few in number. Can you recognize all the spirits affecting you? Someone may have grudge against you and his/her living spirit may be coming near you without knowing it. Or some relatives you don’t know may be trying to depend on you.

  • related 関係した
  • recognize わかる
  • grudge 恨み

If you call out to particular dead people, your memorial services will tell on a part of them and you cannot console the other important spirits. As a result, you won’t be freed from negative spiritual magnetism affecting you in this world. As long as you hold such memorial services that don’t cover the whole spirits, you won’t get peace of mind. They are lacking in practical power like the ones held by conventional religions.

  • particular 特定の
  • magnetism 磁気
  • practical 実践的な

In holding memorial services, it’s important to do it with compassion and mercy for others, whether they are alive or dead. What matters is your merciful heart and consideration for others. Though how far you can be merciful varies from person to person, by holding memorial services for your ancestors, you can practice showing mercy to others and develop your merciful heart.

  • compassion 憐れみ
  • mercy 慈悲
  • alive 生きている
  • vary 異なる
  • from person to person 人によって

As you keep on doing this, you’ll be more and more merciful and come to understand what the selfless, great mercy and love of God are like. Understanding part of God means that you’ve come one step closer to God. And you’ll have your Inner God appear on the surface and come to lead your life like God, which is called Kannagara(カンナガラ), being with God.

  • selfless 無償の
  • come close to A Aに近く
  • on the surface 表面に

If you’re afraid to offer the third incense stick during a memorial service, thinking you might conjure up unnecessary spirits, you can stop doing it because this failure shows the level of your present spirituality. Don’t push yourself too hard.

  • conjure up A  Aを呼び出す
  • spirituality 霊性
  • push oneself too hard 無理をする

I’ve been receiving various thought energy every day from a huge number of readers of this blog since I started writing this blog about two years ago. Most of the energy is the energy of gratitude but some is that of aggression. But I’m totally fine, for I console other various spirits as well as my ancestors by offering the third incense stick.

  • a huge number of A 莫大な数の
  • gratitude 感謝の気持ち
  • aggression 攻撃
  • as well as A  Aだけでなく

When I give healing to spirits out of mercy without the object being specified, aggressive thought energy coming to me is sent back to the sender. It can also be said that Yorishiro, a short strip of paper where spirits can stay at temporarily, receives the negative energy for me.

  • object 対象
  • specify 特定する
  • sender 送り手

Aggressive thought energy is especially weak against healing energy. Even in the case that the aggressive thought energy is so strong that it takes on a concrete figure, it, touching my mercy, would make an apology and go back to the sender. When the grudge against others is returned to the sender, the impact would be huge beyond the sender’s cognitive capacity.

  • concrete 具体的な
  • apology 謝罪
  • cognitive 認知の

So, if you hold memorial services with gratitude for your ancestors and other spirits related to you as a whole every day, someone who has grudge against you might go arse over tit somewhere before you knew it, haha. Anger can never defeat mercy and gratitude.

  • go arse over tit こける
  • defeat 打ち負かす

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます

I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

Thank you so much for keeping me/us alive.

Correct Memorial Services for Ancestors are to Return them Where they Belonged

I’m going to explain more about how to hold a memorial service for ancestors. At the end of the service, you say “Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami” twice with your hands together. You can do it several times until you get peace of mind. It’s better to do it with the image of all the spirits going back to the primordial mother’s love. After this, you can also say “I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma SU,” several times. If it doesn’t feel right to say “Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami,” it’s no problem, for the most important is offering your gratitude to your ancestral spirits in your own way.

  • primordial 根源の
  • feel right しっくりくる
  • ancestral 先祖の

You might think it wrong or strange to say “Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami”, the Sun God in Shintoism, when you hold a memorial service for your ancestors. The truth is Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami is not a deity of a religion but the parent of all creatures, the origin of our lives. The figure of Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami is really that of the sun. In upper dimensions, it is the sun with no individuality. As the dimension where it appears becomes a lower level, it takes on a variety of  human figures.

  • religion 宗教
  • creature 生物
  • figure 姿
  • dimension 次元
  • individuality 個性

Some say Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami has the figure of a male, not a female. They’re just seeing a figure by tuning in to a lower dimension. In lower dimensions, it can take the figure of both a male and a female. The truth is you can only see a figure of God according to the dimension you can tune in to. The true identity of God in the highest dimension looks as if it were the sun. When people die, they go back to the sun, the origin of their lives, which makes them truly rest in peace and the right thing to do. In terms of Buddhism, the sun equals Amida-nyorai(阿弥陀如来).

  • tune in to A Aに同調する
  • as if S+V あたかもSがVするかのように
  • rest 休む

Saying “Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami” twice means Futo-norito, the secret of the oharae-no-kotoba(大祓詞) of Shintoism.

“fu” means “two.”

“to” means “ten”, or the ten words of A-ma-te-ra-su-o-ho-mi-ka-mi.

That is, Futo-norito is to repeat the ten words twice. You can do it many times as you like. Even numbers are divisible, meaning “multiply and thrive.”

  • that is つまり
  • as you like 好きなように
  • even number 偶数
  • divisible 割り切れいる
  • multiply 増殖する
  • thrive 栄える

In religions and religious sects all over the world, there are a lot of names representing the origin of life or the Sun God. But the pronunciation of “Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami” is the best sound for creatures that breathe. That is, the pronunciation is beyond languages and religions and it’s the sound of breath of living things, too. I perceive that the sound resounds around the universe. If you live in a foreign country, it’s better to say slowly “Amaterasu-o-ho-mi-kami” in the morning sun with the image of your ancestral spirits getting peace of mind.

  • religious sect 宗派
  • represent 象徴する
  • pronunciation 発音
  • breathe 呼吸する
  • resound 鳴り響く

The correct memorial service is to return your ancestral spirits where they belonged. Only if a descendant hold a memorial service can it be effective. In Ise Grand Shrine, there is a secret ritual to return the ancestral spirits of the Imperial Family to the Sun God. Similarly, you can practice it so that your ancestral spirits and the Sun can become one. In the past history, people in general were prohibited from seeing the secret ritual because of its strong effectiveness and the ritual was sealed up. It’s also a shinto ritual concerning Shin-no-mi-hashira(心の御柱), the Center Pillar. In this way, there was a period when general people couldn’t visit Ise Grand Shrine. With the passage of time, Shinto shrines and ancestor worship have been divided.

  • descendant 子孫
  • effective 効果がある
  • ritual 市議き
  • the Imperial Family 皇室
  • seal up A Aを封印する
  • concern 関係する
  • ancestor worship 先祖崇拝

False psychics may say “I can do it for you if you pay me,” but memorial services held by others don’t have any effect on your ancestors. Memorial services can only be effective if held with gratitude by the same family members or people related to them. The spiritual truth is that memorial services don’t have meaning until you’re connected to your ancestral spirits by the spiritual line between you and them. Therefore, it’s important that you practice it with a pure heart and the consideration for your ancestors. You don’t need to be particular about small things. Memorial services are also to thank your physical body you’ve borrowed from your ancestors. They rejuvenate you both mentally and physically and enable you to enjoy the present.

  • false 偽の
  • related 関係した
  • consideration 思いやり
  • particular 細かい
  • rejuvenate 若返らせる
  • the present 今

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます

I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

Thank you so much for keeping me/us alive.

It’s very Dangerous to Take away Small Stones Put in the Precincts of Shrines

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There are some people who take away small stones put in the precincts of shrines. If shrines are eminent ones, there must be more who do such a thing. Why do they so? They must be thinking that small stones in shrines are special ones and hoping that keeping them causes something lucky to happen to them.

  • precinct 境内
  • eminent 高名な
  • lucky 幸運な

If a holy spirit were present, it would feel sad about such people’s mean mind. The fact itself of a small stone being taken away doesn’t matter. For example, if you happen to have a small stone gotten between grooves of your shoe sole and take it home accidentally, you don’t deserve any divine punishment. It is the mean mind to try to steal something good even from gods that is sinful. If the stone is a really good thing, you should be such a person who feel like leaving it as it is.

  • present その場にいる
  • mean 卑しい
  • groove 溝
  • deserve 値する
  • punishment 罰
  • as it is そのままに

In contrast, there are others who take away trash from shrines. This is because they want to keep holy precincts clean for the deities. This deed is to remove bad things from the precincts and present a good space for the deity.

  • in contrast 対照的に
  • trash ゴミ
  • remove 取り除く

There are various old tales all over the world that suggest the beautiful small stones you’ve taken from the holy precincts turn into dirt, while the trash you’ve taken from it turn into treasure. This is spiritually true. But you need not take the trouble to visit a shrine to collect trash for the purpose of getting treasure, which is also forbidden in many old tales.

  • old tale 昔話
  • suggest 示唆する
  • treasure 宝
  • take the trouble to~ わざわざ〜する
  • forbid 禁止する

Given bad consequences Kenzokushin(眷属神) guarding the precincts gives you,  it is very dangerous to take away small stones put in the precincts of shrines. If you were a child, you could develop high fever so that you can notice the seriousness of your sin like an advance warning. Adults covered with the dirt of greed, lacking in sensitivity, would be likely to keep such small stones at hand and end up receiving some divine punishment. If you should possess such stones, you should return them to where they were, if possible. If it’s not easy for you to go back there, you should put them in a nearby mountain or river.

  • consequence 結果
  • advance 事前の
  • greed 強欲
  • sensitivity 感受性
  • possess 所有する

In Shintoism, the holy spirit is thought of as ubiquitous in all natural things. Just as I feel the short approach to the main building of Izougu(伊雑宮) to be several hundred meters long when my spiritual body visits there, small stones in the precincts of shrines could be huge stones in the dimension of gods. You had better not think lightly of small stones in the holy precincts.

  • ubiquitous 偏在した
  • natural 自然の
  • approach 参道
  • huge   巨大な
  • dimension 次元

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます

I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma SU

Thank you so much for keeping me/us alive.

Shinto Manner of “Two Bows, Two Claps and One Bow” Set as the Standard by God’s Will

In Shintoism, it has been thought of as the standard manner and disseminated as such all over the country since Meiji era to bow two times, clap your hands two times and bow once in front of the main building of a shrine. As regards the number of the clapping by Shinto priests, however, there are various theories according to ancient traditions.

  • era 時代
  • disseminate 普及する
  • bow お辞儀する
  • as regards A Aに関して
  • ancient 古来の

For example, in Kunitsu-kami(国津神) shrines belonging to Izumo(出雲) line, it is thought of as the official manner to clap your hands four times, while in Ise Grand Shrine(伊勢神宮), to clap your hands four times and do as many times again, which is called Yahirade(八開手), is the offical manner the Shinto priests do. According to my inspiration, I feel that this manner seems to conjure up and worship the Four Haraedo Spirits(祓戸四神) led by Susanoo(スサノオ).

  • official 公式の
  • inspiration 霊感
  • conjure up A Aを呼び出す

Counting the four-time clapping as one-time, the eight-time clapping can be said to be the prototype of the present two-time clapping. Also, the number 8 has been regarded as a lucky number in Shintoism since ancient times.

  • prototype 原型
  • present 現在の
  • ancient times 古代

Humans clap their hands when they are happy or moved, which is a kind of instinct common to all human beings in the world. Babies also clap their hands when happy and so did people in ancient times. Ancient people seem to have clap their hands naturally to express their gratitude, awe or excitement of joy toward the holy spirit. Yes. They could see God.

  • moved 感動した
  • instinct 本能
  • gratitude 感謝の気持ち
  • awe 畏怖の気持ち

They sometimes saw the energy of the holy spirit spiraling up Iwakura(磐座), a huge stone on which the energy body of God comes down. The energy was often perceived as a shining dragon or huge serpent. Impressed by the energy, ancient people clapped their hands to praise God. The number of clapping didn’t matter for them in those days.

  • spiral up 螺旋状に登る
  • perceive 知覚する
  • serpent 蛇
  • praise 賞賛する

I feel that the present manner of ” two bows, two claps and one bow,” has been established by God’s will after many twists and turns. My spiritual interpretation of it is as follows:

● two bows: In shitoism, Izanagi (イザナギ)and Izanami (イザナミ)make a couple and they are the origin of other gods. Therefore, to bow two times is to bow these original gods.

● two claps: To clap two times is to praise the two gods.

● one bow: To bow once in the end is to unit the two gods as one and to express your gratitude for your having been entrusted with it as your Inner God.

  • establish 確立する
  • interpretation 解釈
  • entrust A with B  AにBを任せる

Though there are details about the manner, the most important manner is to dedicate your smiles to God. Please use this attitude as your reference.

  • detail 詳細
  • dedicate 奉納する
  • attitude 考え方
  • reference 参考

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます

I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

Thank you so much for keeping me/us alive.

To Visit a Shrine on the First Day of the Month is to Brace up Yourself

At Shirayama-hime shrine(白山比咩神社), Otuitachi-mairi(お一日参り), to visit a shrine on the first day of the month, is especially important. On the day, a special shinto ritual is started at four in the morning. I’m not sure about its meaning and history, but I feel it’s good from a spiritual point of view, too. Just as it’s important to finish your day by emitting the magnetism of gratitude, which I explained before, Otsuitachi-mairi means to finish a month by emitting the magnetism of gratitude at the very shrine that the holy spirit Kukuri-hime(ククリ秘め) resides at.

  • ritual 儀式
  • meaning 意味
  • emit 放出する
  • reside 宿る

What you have to remember is that it’s important to visit a shrine not passively but positively with the attitude of trying to purify the dirt of your past sins, reconsider your lazy mind and brace up your spiritual body. To offer only your gratitude to Kukuri-hime with such an attitude would brace up your mind and DNA greatly.

  • attitude 態度
  • purify 純化する
  • reconsider 反省する
  • brace A up Aを引き締める

Behind Kukuri-hime are Amenominakanushi-no-kami(天之御中主神)and Four Haraedo(祓戸 deities led by Susanoo(スサノオ). To make a round trip between Ise(伊勢) and Hakusan(白山), your physical body and spiritual body would be restructured at Hakusan and your mind be satisfied at Ise.

  • round trip 往復
  • restructure 再構築する
  • satisfy 満足させる

By visiting a shrine on the first day of the month, you can remove your dirt of sins you committed in the previous month and start a renewed month. At least once a month, you should visit the most eminent shrine or the nearest one in your neighborhood to offer the magnetism of gratitude.

  • remove 取り除く
  • previous 前の
  • renewed 刷新された
  • eminent 高名な

On New Year’s Day in Japan, Kagami-mochi(鏡餅), a round rice cake, is offered to a deity at a festival held at a shrine. I often describe it as “the rice cake of life energy “or “the rice cake of heart,” but I’m not playing with words. Whenever you visit a shrine, you’re offering a rice cake of heart to the deity as a report on your daily lives. As human beings are intrinsically lazy, so without a special day like the first day of the month, we would cease to visit a shrine. In case you cannot pay a visit on the first day of the month, you can do it before or after the day.

  • round 丸い
  • rice cake 餅
  • intrinsically 本質的に
  • cease to~ 〜しなくなる

Holding memorial services for your ancestors at home is important, so is visiting a shrine in your neighborhood, together with enshrining Ofuda(お札), a kind of amulet provided by shrines, into your household shinto altar to adore Amaterasu-oho-mi-kami. Shinto shrines are like the solid materializations of great nature. Human beings are living and being kept alive in mother nature even if you’re in a city, for, wherever you are, you are on this blue earth.

  • ancestor 先祖
  • enshrine 祀る
  • altar 祭壇
  • adore 崇拝する
  • materialization 具現化

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます

I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

Thank you so much for keeping me/us alive.

The Age of 42 is When You Take the Role Gods Want You to Play

Faces of people are beautiful who, even without any religious faith, have been working hard for many years experiencing many things and leading their lives according to their conscience. Faces of craftsmen and people who have been devoting themselves to their work are also beautiful.

  • faith 信仰
  • conscience 良心
  • craftman 職人
  • devote 捧げる

On the other hand, faces of people are ugly who belong to vicious religious organizations and try to persuade others frantically to join the organization for money. They may as well have no religious faith without committing sins as have incorrect faith.

  • on the other hand 一方
  • belong 属している
  • vicious 悪徳の
  • frantically 狂乱的に
  • pearsuate 説得する

As you live long and conscientiously, even if you don’t have any religious faith, you will come to think before you die that you’ve been kept alive or that there may be something great in the universe. If you think so just before you die, however, it’s a little bit regrettable. As you devote yourself to work or artistic accomplishments and try to live so that those around you can be happy, you’ll come to begin to feel “Something Great” in the early years of your life.

  • alive 生きている
  • regrettable 残念な
  • artistic accomplishment 芸事

Those who live righteously and to their hearts’ content will come to have gratitude toward their ancestors and gods after they become 42, which is called Yaku Doshi in , or a critical age, even without any particular religious faith. The critical year is not an unlucky year when something bad happens but a year when you take the role that gods want you to play. From a spiritual point of view, the critical age for women is 42 years old, too. There is a twelve-year cycle in human lives. The duration of human life will be 12o years at longest(12 years ×10). The age of 36 and 42, which is the middle point between 36 and 48, are critical ages.

  • gratitude 感謝の気持ち
  • ancestor 先祖
  • critical 極めて重要な
  • at longest 長くても

The role gods wants you to take is for you to have a correct faith, or to have gratitude toward gods by yourself secretly without joining any religious group. If you cannot recognize this at all, unfortunately, it is possible that your journey in this world called life is quickly finished and you leave this world earlier than expected.

  • correct 正しい
  • secretly 密かに
  • recognize 認識する

The age of 42 is not an unlucky year to dread but a critical year that you awake of the correct faith. Also, it’s time for the consequences of your past life customs to appear physically. It’s also the best age when you have a thorough medical examination.

  • dread 恐る
  • awake 目覚める
  • consequence 結果
  • thorough 徹底的な

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座います

I Ka Shi Te I Ta Da I Te  A Ri Ga To U Go Za I Ma Su

Thank you so much for keeping me/us alive.