These days, our everyday thinking seems to be becoming more rational and less superstitious. However, there are still certain occasions, such as weddings and funerals, about which people become superstitious. For example, they prefer particular days for weddings and avoid certain days for funerals based on old customs.
In regard to these customs, Oyasama once said: “There is not a single day which you ought to complain about. All days are lucky days. People choose a lucky day for a wedding or for raising a house. But the luckiest day is the day when everybody is spirited in mind” (Anecdotes of Oyasama, no. 173). She went on to explain as follows:
First: It Begins
Fourth: Happiness Comes
Fifth: Providence Comes Forth
. . .
Anecdotes of Oyasama, no. 173
In Japan, the number four can be phonetically linked to the word for death. Accordingly, some hospitals avoid this number in room numbers. However, it can also be interpreted as the initial sound of the word for happiness; if we think of the number in this way, there is no need to fear it at all. Likewise, although in Japan the number nine is associated with suffering, Oyasama teaches that it can be connected with the disappearance of suffering—thereby allowing the number nine and the ninth day to be seen positively—depending on how we perceive it.
As for a wedding, just because you get married on a day regarded as auspicious in society, it does not necessarily mean that you can live happily ever after. To bring happiness into your life, you and your spouse need to work together to ensure that your minds are in harmony as you live each day.
As we are taught that this universe is the body of God, there is no particular day, direction, or anything else that we should take as auspicious or inauspicious. Nor are there any food taboos. We do not have a special vegetarian meal for a particular occasion or a rule against eating certain foods. This is because we believe that everything around us is a blessing from God the Parent.
From Tenrikyo no kangaekata kurashikata published by Doyusha Publishing Company