Daily Thanks – 30 of 30

Well here we are on the 30th day of being THANKFUL for the wonderful body that we borrow from God the Parent. It’s perfect timing as it happens to be the 26th, a very important day of the month for Tenrikyo, and the day when the monthly service for world salvation is performed at church headquarters.
I thought I should end the month-long series with something compelling & thought-provoking – not an easy task since every one of the workings I’ve been talking about each day is so profound in and of itself.
Today, I go back to the basic building blocks of life: the cells. We have about 40 trillion cells in our bodies and they all work together to keep us alive and healthy. In our bodies there are about 200 different types of cells. Coincidentally this approximates the number of countries there are in the world.
Different cell types look very different from each other, and act differently too, with each cell type having its own specialization. Similarly, people of different countries of the world have distinctive looks & cultures.
Because the cells need each other to survive and keep the body alive, they use their special talents to work as a team. Cells with similar specialization combine to form tissues. Different tissues then organize to produce organs. Organs then work in conjunction to make up systems (respiratory, circulatory, skeletal, nervous, etc.)
The goal in Tenrikyo is for all the people in the world to live joyously through mutual help and respect of one another. Many people believe this is an impossible dream because in our world there are about 7-8 billion people and there are seemingly too many conflicts and wars due to self-centered thinking, to hope that we can all get along. But I think as civilization has evolved through history, there are fewer losses of life at the hands of others, so we are making progress.
And when we look back at our bodies and recognize that 40 trillion cells (five thousand times more than earth’s population) are working “happily” together despite their differences to keep us waking up each morning, we must be convinced that the goal of the joyous-life world is not only attainable, it’s closer than we might think. All it takes is for people to realize that we must work together to keep the world functioning and healthy.
There’s no “us” and “them”; there’s “we”. There’s no segregation of the “chosen ones” who will reach salvation and the “outsiders” who will suffer in eternal damnation. Just like cells, we will all pass away one day and eventually return to the earth with new life. (FYI, each MINUTE 100 million cells die in our bodies, and are replaced by 100 cells that divide). Even those who choose to believe there is no God/Creator/Sustainer must still believe that life is equally precious to every person on earth.
We are all one family, but we are also one (celestial) body. Each one of us is a cell in that body and we are different from any other cell, but let’s use our specialties to help other cells with the bigger goal in mind!
Mahalo for your support and encouragement over the past 30 days. From tomorrow you can go back to Day 1 and continue to feel thankful each day of each month – all year long.

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Taiheiyo Church

I am a fourth generation American of Japanese descent. My great-grandfather immigrated to Hawaii in 1907, and founded Taiheiyo Church in 1931. My grandfather became the 2nd head minister in 1956, and my father succeeded him as the 3rd head minister in 1981. On November 7, 2015, I was installed as the 4th head minister.

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