Tenrikyo Dynamic Mission - WORLDLY COMMON - TRUTHS OF THE WORLD - Pg. 11 "Some Metaphors"

The poems collected as the "Tip Of The Writing Brush" can be read either as poetry or literally as prose. One of the things that is interesting about the Tenrikyo Dynamic is that the instruction to perform the Service - that is to do the work and calm and completely settle the mind - is the same regardless of the approach or interpretation one adheres to. These pages are geared toward the approach that accepts the instruction to sincerely calm the mind and ponder deeply. It is expected that by pondering the poems deeply an active self centered imagination will be refined and will eventually awaken. On the other hand by literally and directly following the instruction to quickly and totally calm and settle the mind the self centered imagination extinguishes itself. This is the way of true sincerity and is the truth of the "Sazuke", the single hearted salvation that flows from the power of the origin clearly exposed and revealed. 

There exists carefully thought out and worded definitions of most of the metaphors found in the poems collected as the "Tip of the Writing Brush".  It is, I think, important to recall that metaphor is the language of poetry and that  the "Tip of The Writing Brush" is a collection of poems. A metaphor then is the use of a word, idea or image to carry over meaning from one word, idea or image to another by suggesting a certain likeness or analogy. For instance, what is it about water that makes it a metaphor for the human mind?

  1. Since the need for "water" is a necessity for life for all human beings equally "water is then a universal metaphor for all human mind.

  2. When we imagine water it can be viewed as either being clear or muddy. Water then as a metaphor for the human mind can be used as a universal metaphor to describe the state of a human mind as being either clear or muddy. The clear state of mind being settled, pure water without any active thought in it and the muddy state of mind being a mind that is cloudy, agitated and full of active thoughts.

  3. When we imagine looking through a mind that is like settled water it is apparent that we will be able to see clearly. On the other hand when we imagine a  mind that is muddy or clouded we know that our vision will be disrupted and obscured and  that we will not be able to see clearly through such a state of mind.

  4. In the teaching that is the Tenrikyo Dynamic we are told that the truth can be realized by the words "clear" or "muddy".

  5. All of the metaphors that appear in the poems collected as the "Tip Of The Writing Brush" are variations on presenting this one teaching:  Be enlightened by the words "clear" and "muddy".

  6. Well might we ask, why use all of the metaphors and variations on metaphors that appear in the poems? I believe that the answer is because we human beings are difficult to talk to outside of our already preconceived notions and accepted truths. The metaphors appearing in the poems range from the universals such as "water", "Moon" and "Sun" - everyone in the world see the same Moon and Sun - to rather specific needs for communicating in a particular time and place. All of the metaphors however deal with the contrast between what is known and understood by the mind like clear water as compared with the mind that is muddied with worldly common thoughts.  The task of the poems  then is to hasten the testing of what is being taught through the quick process of  purification of the mind so that the truth of origin - what remains when the mind is made clear - can be known and understood. Since the poems represent a conversation, one side of the conversations is the mind of our original parent hastening the quick purification of our mind so that we can awaken to the truth. The other side of the conversation represents the various kinds of human thoughts that find it difficult to settle and awaken from our self centered dreams. If my memory serves me right and it might not, I believe that the 3rd. Shinbashira noted that a fitting subtitle for the "Tip of the Writing Brush" might be "conversations in the the muddy water." That insight, I think, can be based on the the poem:

I shall go into the water in the mountains and make it clear,
whatever kind of water it may be.

The definitions below are examples of thoughts that come to my mind when pondering the distinction between my original consciousness "moto no innen" - what remains of my mind when my imagination is totally settled - and my everyday worldly common thoughts and the truths that flow from them.  That is they represent the two sides of the conversations in the muddy water. Since I am not a scholar or professional writer they are, as to be expected, somewhat raw and amateurish in presentation.

I earnestly request each and every one of you
to ponder deeply over these teachings.

| Worldly Common pg. 1  | Worldly Common pg. 2 - "In the Shallow Water" | "Worldly Common pg. 3 - Diving Deeper" |

| Worldly Common pg. 4 -  "Deeper Still" | Worldly Common pg. 5 "Oh!" | Worldly Common pg. 6 "Me My Mine" |

| Worldly Common pg.7 "Borrowed" | Worldly Common pg. 8 "Lent" | Worldly Common pg. 9 | Worldly Common pg. 10 |

| Worldly Common pg. 11 "Some Metaphors" |


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