Shinji shows sequential steps to overcome the flow of times.
In January, the message was to live life supported by the principles. It was to remind us to select and choose everything based on the teachings. Why? Because, although there are exponential amount of knowledge and information, no one is living their lives following the right path based on principles.
In February, we were taught that if we can go with the flow of time, we will find meaning and purpose. This tells us that there are so many out there who are not experiencing meaning and purpose in their lives. Why is this so? The reason lies in the family environment—people are not feeling true comfort and love in their family environment. When we learn the teachings, we start to realize the right involvement in our respective roles. And as a result, quality time and deepening of thoughtful conversation will lead the family environment to be loving and more comforting. And placing ourselves in that kind of family environment will help us establish better relationships in general, hence allowing ourselves to be useful and contributing. And the more we can contribute and feel useful, we are felt by many, which lead us to finding meaning and purpose to our lives.
Then in March, it was a message not to be consumed by the changes in the world and keep making the effort to contribute and give to society. This is what we are experiencing today. Therefore, we have learned step by step from January, to go with the flow of the time and contribute our abilities.
And as we move ahead into April, the focus is to make efforts to share and practice the teachings with the family. By March, we were able to see matters based on the principles, felt more meaning and purpose, and were able to ride the flow of the time. That is why we need to bring our focus back to our families in April. Every one of us need to stop and go back to learning the teachings from the basics. We have no time to be saying; “we can’t learn the teachings as a family,” or “I cannot discuss the teachings with my husband.” We need to face the family and talk with all honesty. Now is the critical time to practice the teachings.
There are three parts to the Shinji today.
The more the family learns the teachings, the kokoro of family members come together, deepen, and feelings of mutual support strengthen. This is the family where love that is true blossoms and grows.
This is what family should be. To describe a family as a tree, the father is the root who supports the family. The mother who is the trunk, takes in the minerals from the root and passes to the children who are the branches. In a family where the root and the trunk are connected with strong ties, the branches will be in full leaf. The Shinji shows that if we learn the teachings as a family, we will be able to have families like this.
The next part is awareness. It points out what we are lacking and what needs to be practiced now.
To the Shinja
Look carefully at your family. How has the kokoro of the family come together? What is needed is the effort to build a family (family environment) where thoughts and feelings are communicated with love, trust and hope.
When Kami says to “look carefully at your family,” we need to look at our own family based on the “tree” mentioned earlier; Am I being in the strong root as a father to support the family? Am I taking in enough minerals from the root as a mother? Etc. And at the same time, are we coming together by communicating our thoughts and feelings with love, trust and hope? Are we making that effort? Perhaps many are not having enough involvement as the Shinji said the effort is needed. This is the first awareness.
The second awareness is as follows.
When human beings gain an understanding of the principles, love for the family grows naturally, and feelings of gratitude deepen.
“When human beings gain an understanding of the principles” is when we truly understand how family ought to be. And that is when people will naturally love and deepen gratitude. Families used to be more involved and supportive back in the old days. But recently as goods and information have become more abundant, materialistic values increased among many people and families have grown apart as a result. That is probably the reason why we see cases where the wife cannot get enough support from the husband to overcome their own child’s problem.
And the third of the awareness.
The principles bring the kokoro of the family together as one, foster human beings who will live with love that is the truth.
There are people who have reached an understanding of the principles through their own experiences. And they all reach the common values of the importance to love and care their families. This is where the Shinji shows “the principles bring the kokoro of the family together as one.” The more we learn the teachings, the deeper sense of gratitude grows within. And as our gratitude deepens, we will make the effort to do our best to fulfill our roles, hence growing true love in our hearts.
The last part of the Shinji shows us what needs to be deeply understood. Deep understanding helps build better personalities. Therefore, as we learn the principles and keep our awareness in our daily practice, this is what we will experience. There are two points to the deep understanding.
The first understanding.
Human beings are connected to Kami (Shinkon) through their unmei. Knowing this truth, now is the time to learn the teachings as a family. The human kokoro (unmei) that is honed in a family with principles will raise its jittai.
Everyone is born into this world, given an unmei from Kami. And this unmei is a potential to be fully blossomed in society. And the key for one’s unmei to bloom is the tie with the family. So therefore, if the family is still unable to learn the teachings together, we need to be more interactive with the family. And tell the family of all the good changes experienced through learning and practicing of the teachings. When your experiences and changes can be told with confidence, that means the jittai has been raised in multitude ways—meaning the elements that keeps you away from being involved with others will be suppressed. This is deep understanding.
And the second understanding.
The strength that is missing in society today is the kokoro (love) that believes the family as invaluable. Having realized the reason why suffering deepens in a society that is in turmoil, create a home by family members that lives by the principles. Because the kokoro (love) of the family becomes the strength that guides the life of family members on the right path.
No matter how much the society is in turmoil, if the family that values the teachings and practice them, home where the family is will give comfort and ease. Even when things get tough at school or at the workplace, family will feel the pain and help in their own ways. This is how human beings should live and this is what the Shinji wanted to come across to everyone. Society today “is missing the kokoro (love) that believes the family as invaluable.” This is the reason why the world is deepening much confusion and conflict. However, no matter how much society shakes, the teachings will help support each other and help maintain the family’s well-being, finding gratitude even in the smallest things.
Today, there is a spread of people feeling entrapped and hopeless. In times like this, people tend to become aggressive out of insecurity. However, as we deepen the understanding of the teachings, we will start to see that the solution is not to change others or the environment, but to find the right way to involve with them by exchanging thoughts and ideas. It is our time to make the effort to keep our environment to be warm and comfortable for everyone.
In a family environment, do not be consumed by your husband’s, your wife’s, or your child’s attitude, but keep in mind that family is invaluable. What happens then, your child might want to help you make dinner! And that is one great opportunity to deepen the relationship.
“The kokoro (love) that believes family is invaluable” is what is needed today.