The Age Has Come When Each of You Becomes the Founder of Your Own Religion

Tendai(天台) sect of Buddhism, which Saicho(最澄) founded in the early years of Heian age, produced the founders of Jodo sect(浄土宗), Jodo-shin sect(浄土真宗), Rinzai sect(臨済宗), Soto sect(曹洞宗), and Nichiren sect(日蓮宗), which are all representative sects of the modern Buddhism. The basic principle of  Saicho’s teachings is that everything has Buddha nature, which echos the idea of Ise-Hakusan Dou that all human beings are entrusted with Inner God.

  • sect 宗派
  • representative 代表的な
  • entrust 任せる

A major reason why Saicho produced a lot of great religious founders was that neither Saicho nor his teachings had strong religious magnetism that ties down people. His teachings were unconstrained in a good sense and he had a pure heart. His handwriting also shows that he was not an unusual person but a serious one. A different way of looking at him is that he was not so interesting a person as Kukai(空海).

  • tie down 束縛する
  • unconstrained  縛りがない
  • sense 意味

In order for you to develop spiritually, a master with a strong personality is obstructive. A lot of self-proclaimed experts say that the relationship of master and pupil is necessary for spiritual growth. This saying proves that they don’t understand the spiritual truth.

  • personality 個性
  • obstructive 邪魔になって
  • self-proclaimed 自称の
  • relationship 関係
  • prove 証明する

Conventional relationship of master and pupil would make pupils covered with their masters’ spiritual magnetism, and as a result their Inner Gods would hide themselves. Such pupils could never go beyond their masters. There are a lot seekers after the truth who feel good in taking on their masters’ color and mistake it as spiritual progress. Therefore, psychics or religious persons who worship their masters absolutely can be said to be fake.

  • conventional 従来の
  • go beyond A Aを超える
  • fake 偽物

As proof of this, Kukai, full of individuality, didn’t produce any great founders of large sects.  No one could reach enlightenment by his ascetic practices and rituals because they were too unique for anyone but Kukai.

  • proof 証拠
  • individuality 個性
  • enlightenment 悟り
  • unique 独特の

To reach enlightenment is to become one with Inner God, which has nothing to do with others. Kukai’s practices were effective for only Kukai. The most those who try his methods can do is to experience chance encounters in limited, small spiritual worlds. Do not confuse this kind of experience with becoming Buddha.

  • have nothing to do with A Aと関係がない
  • effective 効果のある
  • chance  偶然の
  • encounter 邂逅
  • confuse 混同する

Given the truth that such pupils will never be able to go beyond their masters, it follows that all the pupils worshipping Shakuson(釈尊) have been deteriorating for the last two thousand years. It is natural that Shakuson should have predicted that the age of decadence would come when his true teachings disappear. Now is exactly the age of decadence.

  • worship 崇拝する
  • deteriorate 質が悪化する
  • predict 予言する
  • the age of decadence 末法

The time has come when each of you becomes the founder of your own religion. In order to walk the path to truth rightly without getting sidetracked, it would act as a guide to hold memorial services with gratitude for the spirits related to you and remind yourself of gratitude to God. Spiritual colors of others are nothing but obstacles. Believe in your ancestors and Inner God.

  • get sidetracked 脇道にそれる
  • obstacle 障害物
  • nothing but A A以外の何ものでもない

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.

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You Don’t Need Any Drugs to Feel Happy

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Every time I drive in the evening on weekend recently, I find that spaces have been increasing in parking lots of restaurants. I think closed restaurants have begun to appreciable, too. On the days when all prices of sushi become 88 yen at a certain restaurant, a lot of cars would often wait in a queue for vacant parking spaces of the restaurant, but there were a lot of parking spaces there the other day. People seem to have begun to save money spent on dining out.

  • every time S+V SがVするたびに
  • parking lot 駐車場
  • appreciable 目につく
  • in a queue 列になって
  • dining out 外食

The burst of the bubble of investment started from the U.S. has been involving the whole world. Even jobs or dietary lives of people who have nothing to do with investment have also been affected in Japan. The other day, to help American mega banks, all Japanese mega banks were practically forced to buy stocks of American banks worth hundreds of millions of yen.

  • burst 破裂
  • investment 投資
  • involve 巻き込む
  • stock 債権

If American banks should collapse, Japanese mega banks would be affected severely. What banks do first to avoid such a disaster would be to collect loans from micro, small and medium-sized enterprises. They would do it more and more mercilessly and as a result such enterprises would be forced to close stores, reduce workforce or go bankrupt. Various problems will surface next year or the year after.

  • collapse 崩壊する
  • collect 回収する
  • reduce 減らす
  • various 様々な
  • surface 表面化する

It is sad to see human beings with God inside themselves ground down by invisible money, which is nothing more than figures. Do not prostitute your soul to what you cannot take with you after death. A feeling of happiness changes all the time. Once what you thought would make you happy comes true, you will come to feel dissatisfaction with the same thing in time.

  • grind down A  Aを虐げる
  • nothing more than A Aに過ぎない
  • fogure 数字
  • prostitute 安く売る
  • once S+V 一旦SがVしたら
  • dissatifaction 不満
  • in time やがて

The level of happiness you seek for goes up higher and higher, which is not due to aspiration in the true sense of the word. No matter how much your surroundings change, you cannot have a peaceful state of mind as long as your mind stays the same. Trying to make the level of happiness higher would make you poor in spirit. True aspiration should be for you to be broad-minded and kind, regardless of your present situations.

  • be due to A Aが原因である
  • aspiration 向上心
  • broad-minded 広い心

There are many people in the world who want to have a full meal even just for once in their lives. In contrast, some people are keen on dieting and others kill themselves because of love problems. Though they are all human beings, they are seeking for different kinds of happiness seriously.

  • have a full meal お腹いっぱい食べる
  • in contrast 対照的に
  • be keen on A Aに熱心である

In this World of Reality, you can never satisfy yourself by gaining a lot of money, possessing things or trying to depend on others. It’s like drug. The more you take drugs, the less you’re satisfied, which leads to fearful consequences. The ends of drug users and those seeking for God outside themselves may the same. Both of them will end up killing their conscience, or Inner God.

  • satisfy 満足させる
  • atrophy 萎縮させる

As you come to feel happiness without drugs, you won’t need them any more. To terminate drug taking, what should you do? It you realize good points of the present situations or things you should be grateful for you can stop using drugs. Then you would have the true aspiration of making the best of your present situations. You would try your best because your present situations are extremely unusual and too good to miss. Aren’t you missing the chance?

  • terminate 終わらせる
  • make the best of A Aを最大限に利用する
  • unusual 稀有な

We humans are all destined to leave this world sooner or later. The time is to come when you leave your physical body and surroundings behind. No matter how much you’re suffering, the end will come.  No matter how happy you are, the time for you to leave will come. So, why don’t you savor the rest of your short life?  For you can never experience your present life again ever. Don’t hurry. Assume an immovable attitude.

  • destined 運命付けられて
  • leave A behind Aを置いていく
  • savor 味わう
  • rest 残り
  • hurry 急ぐ
  • immovable 不動の

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.

Things will Get Better as Long as You Keep Your Conscience

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When the economy gets worse, people loaded with cares increase, for the depression begins to affect family finances. When the economy is good, however, people worry about something, too. Though, with the market lively, people take a good financial condition for granted and don’t worry about money, they are still distressed by sexual relations and the comparison with others for example. In short, people are distressed all the time.

  • care 心配事
  • depression 不景気
  • lively 活気のある
  • distressed 悩んだ
  • comparison 比較

In this World of Reality, there is a spiritual law that make people distressed constantly so that their souls can develop. To tell the truth, those who are distressed are fortunate, for as people get older and their growth potential decreases, they grow forgetful and cease to worry, which may be the grace of God.

  • purpose 目的
  • develop 発達する
  • constantly 絶えず
  • potential 可能性
  • grace 恩寵

As long as you are able to worry, there exists the possibility of your soul developing because God expects so. In this sense, if you’re distressed now, it’s OK as long as you keep a positive mind. When you look at this World of Reality and realize this law, you can cope with your worries, putting out your tongue at them. They just worry you only while you’ve got your physical body for a short period of time. Since your soul is destined to go on the next journey after taking off your physical body, the cares you have at present are nothing special.

  • exist 存在する
  • positive 積極的な
  • anxiety 不安
  • physical body 肉体
  • desitined 運命付けられた

No worries can hurt your soul deeply. But they appear to wring your heart. Why? Because what hurts your mind is not worries but yourself. It is you who are the culprit and hurt your own mind. As you race through your life trying to escape from worries, your mind and body will lose flexibility and you’ll have no room in your heart. In such a case, though you’re in pain, it’s best for you to slow down and have the courage to savor and watch the worries calmly.

  • wring 苦しめる
  • culprit 犯人
  • race 急ぐ
  • courage 勇気
  • savor 味わう

To face your worries and accept them positively, it’s important that you have no unnecessary spiritual magnetism surrounding your body. With this magnetism, you would find it difficult to keep on practicing good things, however much you hear an instructive story. You would be overwhelmed by worries and end up as all talk. To ensure that this does not happen, I’ve shown you the Ise-Hakusan-Dou method of turning a bad spiritual magnetism into a good one.

  • face 直視する
  • magnetism 磁気
  • instructive 建設的な
  • overwhelm 圧倒する
  • all talk 口だけ

However much you’re going through difficulties, you’ll be alright as long as you can keep your conscience. However much you stumble covered in mud, your soul is free from mud as long as you have consideration for others. Why don’t you enjoy the present journey a lot?

  • conscience 良心
  • stumbe 転ぶ
  • consideration 思いやり

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 Fundamental Problem will never be Solved as Long as You only Set Immediate Goals

A crazy man in Sangai(三界), the three worlds, doesn’t know him to be crazy.

A blind man in Sishou(四生), the four creature worlds,  doesn’t know him to be blind.

Born again, again, again and again, man is born ignorant from the start of his life.

Dying again, again, again and again, man dies ignorant at the end of his life.

This poem is attributed to Kukai(空海), a famous Japanese Buddhist monk. I feel that he is saying “People living in this world don’t realize their wrong deeds. All living things don’t even know that they are ignorant of the truth. Human souls are born as they are over and over again but still they remain the same. They die again and again, but still they die ignorant. It’s about time they realized they are the Buddha, or the universe itself.”

  • ignorant 無知の
  • attribute A to B AはBの作であるとする
  • realize 認識する
  • deed 行い

People are troubled by various things in this world. Why are they? Because they are afraid to make mistakes and become losers. Lives are short and only several decades, though. For example, a woman may wonder if there might be a better marriage partner, hoping to choose a man who makes her happier. Wanting to win in this gambling, she may distress herself and go so far as to ask a psychic for advice who charge money in the name of God, making her life subject to what the psychic says.

  • trouble 悩ます
  • decade 10年
  • go so far as to~ 〜しさえする
  • subject 従属した

Before you get married, you need to observe your marriage partner thinking that social status, riches or good looks are to vanish sooner or later. You should choose the one according to your conscience, asking yourself if you still want to get married to him/her even without such things. If you get married after distressing yourself, wanting to make a better choice, your marriage life is likely to fail because your criterion of judging a person is wrong.

  • observe 観察する
  • status 地位
  • conscience 良心
  • citerion 基準

If you want a good marriage, you should:

● hold memorial services for your ancestors with gratitude, be grateful to God and live your life in such a way that you can develop your conscience

● observe the other’s attitude toward his/her parents and old people. It’s important to see his/her attitude toward others, not toward you. By doing so, you can learn his/her true nature

● ask your parents or friends for opinions if you’re not sure about the other’s true nature

and so on.

  • attitude 態度
  • true nature  本性

However, the point is that marriage is never a goal of your life, just like Kukai said. If you live your life setting marriage as a goal, the eternal loop of life and death will never stop. Everything in life is nothing more than play through which you see God in yourself and others. All you have to do is do what you want according to your conscience, never afraid of making mistakes.

  • eternal 永遠の
  • nothing more than A Aに過ぎない
  • afraid 怖がって

So, if you want to get married, you have only to choose a partner in view of your conscience, never afraid of making a mistake. Once you’ve got married, you may be distressed by various things you never imagined when you were single or may experience many good things conversely.

  • in view of A Aに照らして
  • once S+V 一旦SがVしたら
  • conversely 逆に

Remaining single is also good, of course. It can be said that such people’s souls have already got through with tasks marriage life gives. I feel such souls have been increasing in number since the latter half of Showa era(昭和). They have chosen different kinds of tasks from married people’s.

  • single 独身の
  • get through with A Aを終える
  • increase 増加する
  • on one’s own 自分で

In any case, all you have to do is live in society to your heart’s content. Things can only get better as long as you do your best and live to the full.

  • in any case 何れにしても
  • to one’s heart’s content 思う存分
  • to the full  思い切り
  • as long as S+V SがVする限り

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

Only After You’ve Lost People who Supported You Can You Realize How Important They were

The Japanese phrase “okagesama” is written “御蔭様” or  “御陰様” in Chinese characters. According to a dictionary, the phrase is the one said to another with gratitude who gives you support or a favor.  “蔭” and “陰” both mean “shadow,” so the phrase is used not only for people you’re aware of but also for people you’re not. I feel that “okagesama” is an appreciative word you say for your being kept alive.

  • Chinese character 漢字
  • graitude 感謝の気持ち
  • favor 親切
  • aware  気がついて
  • appreciative 感謝の

It is difficult to notice those you’re not aware of but you should be grateful to. People are apt to fail to notice them because they’re invisible, your eyes are blinded, you don’t want to admit it though you’re aware of them, you don’t feel like being grateful to them and so on.

  • grateful 感謝して
  • be apt to~ 〜しがちで
  • fail to~ 〜しない
  • admit 認める

Anybody should owe a lot to others but is apt to forget them. Without them, you couldn’t live. The fact that you’re living now, no matter what difficulties you’re going through or how miserable you are, means someone has been supporting you from behind the scene. Who is it? Since people are sometimes stupid, it is only after they’ve lost those supporting you that they realize how important the benefactors were. If the benefactor is a person, only after he/she passes away can you realize how much you’ve owed to him/her deeply. You would realize honestly the fact that the person concerned himself/herself with a certain period of your lifetime and supported you.

  • owe 借りがある
  • miserable 惨めな
  • benefactor 恩人
  • pass away 亡くなる
  • honestly 素直に
  • concern 関係させる
  • period 期間

The deceased who had something to do with you have also existed in the small universe in your heart and still have been supporting you. Until their souls leave for another journey, the relationship between you and them continues. Therefore, it is important that you hold memorial services for them without forgetting them.

  • the deceased 故人
  • relationship 関係

If you can realize who you should be grateful to while they’re alive, you won’t regret later in life. Your attitude toward them would change, too. It is precious and wonderful that you can mend your ways while you’re alive. To realize them, take a look around you from the point of view of being kept alive.

  • regret 後悔する
  • attitude 態度
  • mend 修正する

As you work or get along with your family and people around you, always grateful for being kept alive, you will be able to accept them as they are, not so concerned about trifle things. Okagesama is like an individual because “sama” is added to a person’s name. Okagesama may be a being who has offered and supported this world full of joy, anger, grief and pleasure.

  • get along 付き合う
  • concerned 気にして
  • trifle 些細な
  • offer 提供する

Are you in trouble? Don’t worry. It’s like you’ve just got into a roller coaster whose ticket is expensive. It’ll be over soon. If you should get out of it now in the middle of moving, your soul will die. If you don’t enjoy the ride, going up and down, you’ll waste the ticket. The bigger the thrill, the more you’ll want to ride it again when it’s over. Who is it that controls the roller coaster? – it’s God inside you.

  • roller coaster ジェットコースター
  • expensive 高価な
  • in the middle of A Aの最中に

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.

You should Sometimes Think of the Miracle of Your Existence

It is sometimes important, on your birthday, New Year’s Day or an anniversary for example, to think about the miracle of your having been born and be grateful for it. Etching the magnetism of gratitude into space like this is important because it will lead you to be grateful to nature and God.

  • anniversay 記念日
  • grateful 感謝して
  • etch 刻む
  • lead A to~  Aが〜するよう仕向ける

The magnetism of your thought about the wonder of your having been born will cause you to be eager to thank God, though they appear to be unrelated. In this world, the magnetism of your thought often attracts unexpected things. You just can’t realize the correlation between them, good or bad.

  • wonder 不思議
  • eager  切望して
  • unrelated 関係のない
  • enexpected 予期せぬ
  • correlation 相関関係

As you offer appreciative words and incense sticks to your ancestral spirits every day, even for form’s sake at first, the magnetism of this practice is sure to influence your future. It is difficult to know in what way the magnetism will influence, or be projected onto, your future. But you will find that everything around you is getting better in the long run.

  • appreciative 感謝の
  • incense stick 線香
  • form 形
  • be sure to~ 必ず〜する
  • project 映す
  • in the long run 長い目で見ると

Strangely enough, people are apt to think that being grateful is just a mindset and easy to do. But it’s not so easy being grateful all the time as you think because the magnetism of your thought caused by the way you live every day controls and influences your way of thinking and acting.

  • strangely enough 奇妙なことに
  • be apt to~ 〜しがちである
  • continuously 継続して
  • all the time いつも
  • control 支配する

Living by inertia, some come to expect time to pass fast just as you think when you see a throwaway match. Or when some misfortune happens, others are apt to think about their lives carelessly and expect them to be over soon. The magnetism of this kind of attitude leads to that of blaspheming God. It will have bad influence on your future.

  • by inertia 惰性で
  • expect 期待する
  • thrownaway match 消化試合
  • misfortune 不運なこと
  • carelessly 投げやりに
  • blaspheme 冒涜する

It is more difficult to be born into this world than you win lotteries 1000 times in a row. Without intermediary of God, coming into being is impossible. “Do aliens exist?”- scientists reply to this question by saying that it is natural to think that, just as humans exist on the earth, aliens exist somewhere else. “Does God exist?”- your existence itself proves God’s existence.

  • lottery 宝くじ
  • in a row 連続して
  • intermediary 介在
  • come into being 生じる
  • reply 答える
  • prove 証明する

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.

Those are Strong Who are Conscious of Death

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People in various fields, including religious men and doctors, say that positive thinking is important and so do I. But I’m always conscious of the worst case, too. Realizing the worst case, I try to think positively.

  • field 分野
  • consccious 意識して
  • realize 認識する

As long as you suppose the worst case in advance, you can be strong. If it should happen, you would just think “Oh, here it comes” without being confused. People suffer when unexpected things happen. They would be in a state of commotion and might have some trauma in their minds.

  • suppose 想定する
  • confuse 混乱させる
  • commotion 動揺

For example, suppose you’ve lent a lot of money to a friend of yours but he’s run away with it. If you can imagine in advance before lending it that he might not pay it back, you won’t lend so much money as to affect your own life. Even if he does a moonlight flit, you won’t get upset. Conversely, if he pays it back according to his promise, you’ll appreciate it. In lending money, taking it for granted for the money to be paid back would lead you to be scammed sooner or later.

  • run away 逃げる
  • imagine 想像する
  • moonlight flit 夜逃げ
  • scam 騙す

Also, you had better not take it for granted for you to be able to walk. If you don’t have any gratitude for your being able to walk, you can be unable to walk sooner than you expected when you get older, for if you take being able to walking for granted, you don’t train your legs nor care about your posture or walking shoes in walking.

  • had better~ 〜した方が良い
  • gratitude 感謝の気持ち
  • train 鍛える
  • posture 姿勢

In this World of Reality, those are strong who accept death and are always conscious of it positively. Being conscious of death to come enables you to recognize and treasure the precious present moment and you can enjoy life all the more.

  • accept 受け入れる
  • enable 可能にする
  • treasure 大事にする

In the modern age, a lot of people have forgotten death. If you’ve forgotten death, you are likely to be selfish and cling to things. You might kick out others or hurt them because of things to vanish sooner or later. Having an illusion that you can stay in this World of Reality forever causes you to have a strong attachment for everything.

  • selfish 利己的な
  • cling 固執する
  • kick out A Aを蹴落とす
  • vanish 消える
  • illusion 幻想
  • attachment 執着

There are many people who pray to gods or turn to psychics for easy solutions, trying to escape from difficulties or something they don’t like in spite of their lives being short. Even if the psychic can guess some trifle things right or they have him solve the problem, the rest of their lives will never be better.

  • pray 祈る
  • solution 解決
  • rest 残り

On the contrary, they will lose confidence in themselves all the more and their lives will become worse. They will come to be unable to judge anything on their own and become fragile like a leaf in the wind. They’re sure to wander after they die.

  • on the contrary それどころか
  • confidence 自信
  • fragile か弱い
  • wander 迷う

In the eyes of God, they look truly miserable. What were they born for? It looks like they are giving up their lives without appreciating them, trying to run away from or terminate them as soon as possible. Such people’s lives will become short indeed.

  • miserable 惨めな
  • terminate 終わらせる
  • indeed 実際

Being grateful for your present situations and trying to appreciate your life without running away from reality would extend your life. “Don’t be in haste in life” has been often said since a long time ago. This is spiritually true, too.

  • present situations 現状
  • extend 延ばす
  • haste 急ぎ

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.