Great Construction

Faith that Includes Common Sense

     True faith must center on maintaining that word and deed do not stray from common sense. Faiths that adopt activities such as spiritual possession, outrageous speech, and eccentric behavior require caution. The tendency for most people, however, is to think rather that such faiths are inspiring. Such an attitude is not unreasonable since spiritual knowledge is lacking but alertness is required. Neither will do those dogmatic faiths which prefer that their members not fraternize with those outside their own organization. A true faith affirms that the mission of religion is to save the world and humanity, and the way it should be is that exclusive behavior, without obsession on particular organizations, is not adopted. Such can probably be understood from an observation of the wretched suffering Japan had to taste until the end of the recent war which resulted from ignoring the interests of other nations and insisting on its own national interests.
     I believe that the ultimate goal of faith is to create a perfect human being. Of course, in our wide world, perfection cannot be expected, but at least the mental training and practice of self-discipline, one step at a time, toward the goal of perfection, is the proper attitude in faith. Therefore, the more wholeheartedly one devotes oneself to faith, the more one should appear to others as an ordinary person because one has masticated and digested faith. The real evidence of a practice of faith is that speech and deeds are entirely in line with common sense, that a sense of pleasantness is exuded to others, and that others cannot determine the particular faith of the individual. Others will sense a kindness filled with modesty that feels like a soft spring breeze in which their good fortune and the increase of well being are being sought earnestly. A point I often make is that to make oneself fortunate, first of all, one must work to make others fortunate, and as such occurs, what one is bestowed by God is true happiness. Therefore, it should be understood that to desire happiness only for oneself and to behave at the expense of others will lead to nothing other than reverse effect.

Essays on Faith (Shinkō Zatsuwa), page 5, September 5, 1948
    translated by cynndd

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“Jōshiki,” the third chapter of the Japan Kannon Church publication Shinkō Zatsuwa (Essays on Faith), September 5, 1948, reprinted while Meishu-sama still alive in the only Sekai Meshiya Kyō anthology for the general membership Tengoku no Fukuinsho (Gospels of Heaven), has appeared previously in translation. Citation is given below for reference.

“Common Sense in Religion,” Fragments from the Teachings of Meishu-sama, 1965, page 40.

“Common Sense in Religion,” Foundation of Paradise, 1984, page 287.

“What Is True Faith?” Teachings of Meishu-sama, Volume Four, 2007, page 10.

“The Ideal Believer,” Reaching for Faith, 2010, page 20.

“Common Sense,” Meishu and His Teachings, n.d., page 24.

“Common Sense,” A Hundred Teachings of Meishusama, n.d., page 40.