Tenrikyo’s Way of Thinking and Living: The Grand Service and the Monthly Service

The Grand Service and the Monthly Service both take place in the Main Sanctuary, which comprises the Inner Sanctuary, which centers on Jiba, and four worship halls that surround it—the North, South, East, and West Worship Halls.

The Service—whether it is the Grand Service or the Monthly Service—consists of two parts: the Kagura Service and the Teodori, the Dance with Hand Movements. The Kagura Service is a reenactment in principle of God the Parent’s providence at the time of creation. Wearing their respective kagura masks, ten Service performers encircle the Kanrodai placed at Jiba of Origin and symbolize by hand-gestures the principles of God the Parent’s workings by which humankind was created. The Kagura Service is the means by which we call forth God the Parent’s blessings of universal salvation, whereby the world will be reconstructed as the world of the Joyous Life.

Following the Kagura Service, the Dance with Hand Movements is performed by three men and three women on the dais in the Main Sanctuary. As a manifestation of the Joyous Life, the performance of the Dance with Hand Movements is allowed not only at Jiba but also at local churches—whereas the Kagura Service can only be performed at Jiba. Both the Kagura Service and the Dance with Hand Movements are joyously performed by the dancers moving in unison to the Mikagura-uta and in harmony with the music of the nine musical instruments: the flute, cymbals, wooden clappers, large drum, gong, small drum, koto (a thirteen-stringed long zither), shamisen (a banjo-like three-stringed plucked instrument), and kokyu (similar to the shamisen except smaller, held vertically, and bowed).

At Church Headquarters, the Autumn Grand Service is performed on October 26, commemorating October 26, 1838, the day on which the Teaching was founded. The Spring Grand Service is performed on January 26 in commemoration of January 26, 1887, the day on which Oyasama withdrew from physical life. The Monthly Service is conducted on the 26th in each of the other months. In addition, the Oyasama Birth Celebration Service is performed on April 18, and the New Year’s Day Service on January 1.

Let us attend these Services in high spirits.

From Tenrikyo no kangaekata kurashikata published by Doyusha Publishing Company

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