Greeting by Masaaki-sama
Ceremony for Approval of Regional Directors, Area Heads, and Headquarters Directors and Managers
Su no Hikari Church Headquarters Altar Room
October 1, 2019
I believe that, for many years, Kyoshu-sama has been teaching us one idea.
That is, heaven exists within us. And in that heaven, from long, long ago, at the very beginning, God had already determined His will. If we want to be used in the divine work of salvation, Kyoshu-sama is saying that we must return to that heaven with repentance.
Kyoshu-sama is saying that we do not return to heaven by ourselves. He is teaching us that many ancestors live within us, they exist within us, and, together with our ancestors, we must return to heaven in the name of Messiah, and then we must be used in the divine work of salvation.
Because many ancestors are within us, various thoughts and feelings come and go in our hearts and minds like worry, hatred, or anger. So, we return to heaven carrying them with us and then are used in another new divine task of salvation.
By His own great hand, God is trying to save and welcome many people into His heaven and is always using our hearts and minds in this divine work. Kyoshu-sama is saying that this divine work, actually, is the true work of Johrei. God is using our minds and hearts, our thoughts and feelings – in other words, our sonen – to advance his divine work of salvation.
And so we are serving in this divine work of salvation – does it end there? No, it does not. Kyoshu-sama is saying that our ultimate purpose is to be born anew as a true child of God – Messiah. He teaches us that God determined this a long time ago. We are walking on that path right now.
That is the idea that Kyoshu-sama is teaching us.
After Meishu-sama’s ascension, we had a certain “understanding” of what we thought was Meishu-sama’s wish, his will, the teachings. We thought that what Kyoshu-sama was teaching us was different from this. We cannot deny the fact that each one of us here had those kinds of thoughts.
Now then, what is Meishu-sama saying?
In his teaching, “The uniqueness of the salvation of our religion,” Meishu-sama said that you, yourself, before anything else, must climb up to heaven and be its resident. “To climb up to heaven before anything else” premises that within each one of us is heaven. Meishu-sama is saying that “heaven exists within you! Return there first!” That is what he says is unique about the salvation of our religion.
And Meishu-sama says that he, himself, came to this world to do the work decided by God thousands, tens of thousands of years before.
When Kyoshu-sama speaks about the will of Meishu-sama, he says over and over again to “repent.” Meishu-sama said in the “Preface to Creation of Civilization” that he came, on behalf of God, to urge people to repent and that he is that kind of existence.
Meishu-sama also taught about the ancestors, and said that we, each individual, is the sum total of all the numerous ancestors.
On the attitude and thought of Johrei that Kyoshu-sama is teaching us, right after Meishu-sama had a brain stroke, he said over and over again that “Johrei is not as important now. From here on, we enter the world of sonen.”
To be born anew as the Messiah, too, was Meishu-sama’s final state of being. Because we want to emulate him, we followers of Meishu-sama have been channeling Johrei as Meishu-sama did and doing all his divine works in the same way through today. Again, this is because we want to have Meishu-sama as our model, because we want to follow in Meishu-sama’s footsteps.
The ultimate question Kyoshu-sama is asking us is do we want to follow Meishu-sama, or not. Do we want to follow Meishu-sama’s example and walk the path of being born anew as the Messiah, or not? Kyoshu-sama is posing this question directly to us, this one point.
The fact that Meishu-sama was born anew as the Messiah simply cannot be erased. An audio recording is even left as testimony. Meishu-sama clearly said it.
And so we can no longer deny Kyoshu-sama’s guidance that we must follow Meishu-sama’s example and we, too, must be born anew. With this guidance, what we have built up after Meishu-sama’s ascension, the way that suits our own convenience, begins to collapse.
However, with thoughts like, “we simply cannot accept this, we want to continue and keep the way we have been doing things until now, we need to protect ourselves,” they appeared as actions that we would even hesitate to put into words, actions that are far away from the will and teachings of Meishu-sama. In other words, while we, ourselves, certainly may not have acted in such way, those thoughts manifested in the actions of secretly following, filming, and photographing Kyoshu-sama.
That is because we, myself included, had within us these kinds of thoughts. Within us, we wanted to maintain the ways of the past in some way or other; we wanted to somehow continue Meishu-sama’s divine work within a category that we, ourselves, understood. Because we had these thoughts, some of us had to bear that divine work and were made to put those thoughts into action. In actuality, those who acted in such ways are a reflection of ourselves.
So they ended up doing such actions and what was the result? Nothing worth mentioning! They found that Kyoshu-sama was interacting with Christianity and Christians and they insisted it was a problem.
And so, to that, what is Meishu-sama saying?
At the establishment of World Church of Messiah, Meishu-sama clearly said that his religion is one that would work in concert with Christianity. In the West is Christ. In the East is Messiah. Should all followers of these two major forces diligently fight for world peace, it will most definitely be realized. The followers of World Church of Messiah and the followers of Christianity – Meishu-sama uses the phrase “all followers” meaning he sees them as one and the same followers.
As such, Meishu-sama left us words that we simply cannot deny when it comes to interacting with people from Christianity. He says that his religion and Christianity, these two major forces, will work in concert with each other and fight together.
However, they did not give up there. “No, it is fine to interact with people from Christianity. But the teachings of Kyoshu-sama themselves are transforming the teachings up until now into Christianity. That is the problem.” There are these kinds of criticisms too.
Well, what does Meishu-sama say?
When one of his main disciples, Rev. Issai Nakajima passed away, Meishu-sama said that World Church of Messiah would become extremely close to Christianity.
We should be very surprised by this phrasing. It is understandable if he just said Christianity would become closer to World Church of Messiah. However, Meishu-sama said that World Church of Messiah would become extremely close to Christianity. He used an expression centered on Christianity. Under usual circumstances, you would think of your own religion as the main one, but Meishu-sama did not.
And so, to be born anew as the Messiah; to climb up to heaven before anything else; Johrei is not as important; working in concert with Christianity; becoming extremely close to Christianity – if Meishu-sama had not left all these matters for us, I believe these criticisms toward Kyoshu-sama could not have been helped.
However, this was not so. What I am saying here now on Meishu-sama’s teachings and examples from his life is undeniable fact. These are facts that Meishu-sama left. Kyoshu-sama isn’t the first person to say these things – to be born anew as the Messiah, to work in concert with Christianity, becoming extremely close to Christianity, Johrei is not as important, from now on, we enter the world of sonen – Meishu-sama said all these.
If we one day go to heaven and we each meet with Meishu-sama, he may ask us, “I said that ‘Johrei is not as important now. From here on, we enter the world of sonen.’ What did you do about it?” or “I said that World Church of Messiah will work in concert with Christianity, but what did you do about it?” or “I said that World Church of Messiah will become extremely close to Christianity, but what did you do about it?” How would we reply?
Isn’t Kyoshu-sama now guiding us so that we can directly face Meishu-sama without being ashamed when asked these questions?
Recently, we have had many crucial moments. There was this year’s meeting with Japan’s church heads from all over the country held on March 31 and also today. Why has Meishu-sama prepared for us these moments, over and over again?
I believe Meishu-sama is preparing these moments for us because he wants for us to have true resolve.
I say that but, actually, it is already too late. Meishu-sama left these said matters for us decades ago. But because we fell short, I believe he prolonged the time for us and waited and waited until each one of us had firm resolve, resolve in the truest sense.
This is not the kind of delay that happens because members are saying this and that or have such and such opinions.
If members cannot understand this current new faith, the responsibility is ours! That is because we guided those members until now.
But if we are truly sorry that we were not turning our hearts toward the examples from Meishu-sama’s life that he left for us, and from here on, we want to be used in Meishu-sama’s divine work in some way – if we feel this from the very bottom of our hearts – regardless of whether we say something directly to the members or not, something will no doubt exude from our way of being.
If all of you believe that the idea that Kyoshu-sama teaches us is Meishu-sama’s will, then there should be absolutely no difference between those who are receiving new work and those who may be retiring from the front lines.
That is because – and Kyoshu-sama explains to us what Meishu-sama left us in his final years on the true work of Johrei – God is using our minds and hearts, anytime and anywhere, to advance his divine work of salvation. This is divine work.
From here on, wherever we may go, wherever we may be, whatever work may be bestowed upon us, there may be things like the exchanges we will have with family or with members – various thoughts and feelings will arise. All of these are the thoughts and feelings that God has gathered together to our hearts for the salvation of all humanity.
There are only some of you here that are receiving approval in today’s ceremony. Does that mean that only you are being used by God? I don’t think so. If God is using our hearts and advancing His divine work, then we all, from here on, will be used in the divine work that Meishu-sama is advancing.
The workings of our hearts, the workings of our minds, our sonen, cannot be seen physically, but I tell you that the immensity of their impact on the physical world is immeasurable.
I believe in this and, from here on too, I would like to walk together with Kyoshu-sama. And I would like to walk together with all of you.
Let us do our best.
Thank you very much.