The June Monthly Service was performed on the 26th at Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. Amid the elegant sounds of the gagaku music, the Shinbashira and the other Service performers filed into the Main Sanctuary.
Thereupon, the Shinbashira ascended the dais to offer the service prayer. After extending our gratitude for the blessings we receive day after day, the Shinbashira said: “We Yoboku are committed to giving spiritual support to the many people who are suffering from incurable illnesses, who have lost their hopes and prospects for the future, and who are burdened by anxieties that leave their minds depressed. To be in a position to provide them with spiritual support, we are firmly determined to teach them about Your blessings, to interact with them through our mind of sincerity, to dedicate ourselves to the Truth, and to work in the cause of single-hearted salvation.”
The Kagura, the Dance with Masks, and the Teodori, the Dance with Hand Movements, were then performed to the accompaniment of the nine musical instruments, while the congregation spiritedly joined in singing the Mikagura-uta, The Songs for the Service.
During the latter half of the Teodori performance, an incident occurred in which one of the congregation, crossing the partition and climbing down into the Inner Sanctuary, pulled over the top half of the blocks of the Kanrodai. The blocks were immediately reassembled, thus restoring the Kanrodai to its original shape. In the meantime, the Teodori continued without interruption.
Following the performance of the Service, Honbu-in Tadatsugu Yamanaka delivered the sermon. After explaining the teaching “the mind alone is yours,” he emphasized that it is of utmost importance for us to “base all our thoughts and judgments on the teachings and carefully correct our thoughts whenever we find them to be out of accord with the teachings, thus enabling us to settle the mind of sincerity that is in accord with God the Parent’s intention.”
After quoting an anecdote entitled “The Virtue Which Reaches Heaven” from the Anecdotes of Oyasama, the Foundress of Tenrikyo, Honbu-in Yamanaka emphasized that our joy and spiritedness, which derive from our gratitude for the daily workings provided by God the Parent and Oyasama, must be expressed through our attitude and actions, which is to say, through hinokishin. Therein, he said, we find the true sincerity that accords with God the Parent’s intention.
Next, quoting from the Besseki lecture and the former Shinbashira’s talks, Honbu-in Yamanaka stressed that the clear and pure mind, the mind like clear skies and the mind of true sincerity, is the absolute requirement for all Yoboku. “As Yoboku,” he continued, “we are all useful timber for constructing the world of the Joyous Life so desired by God the Parent. We must take pride in our task of conveying God the Parent’s teachings and helping others to be saved.”