Category Archives: Cosmology

On the Nature of Reality Series

NGC6960 Veil Nebula by Rob Gendler. Click to enlarge.

Message from Okunomichi

Thank you for visiting Okunomichi. I chose my pen-name after the title of haiku master Matsuo Basho’s masterpiece, Oku no Hosomichi, the Narrow Road to the Interior. Okunomichi (Oku no Michi) means the Path to Inner Wisdom. After some decades of studying various Eastern and Western mystery schools, I have finally come to see how they are connected. The answer is obvious, through The Ageless Wisdom found around the world since ageless times. But just how, was beyond me. 

However, at this time, the world is opening to an outpouring of cosmic energies. Earth and its inhabitants of the mineral, plant and animal kingdoms are awakening and evolving to higher frequencies and higher dimensions. We are being infused by energies from outer space as well as within, and assisted and guided by more highly evolved beings than we, so that we can join them as fully realized beings.

As a physicist and mathematician, it has taken a lot to come to this stage of understanding of metaphysics and spiritual matters. I thank all my teachers and supporters, whether scientists or spiritual, whether in body or not, for getting me here. I was always driven by an intention to understand the true nature of reality. I sought it in the physical realm, and I learned a lot about how to conduct research and how the three-dimensional world operates. But not enough. We must open our minds — and our hearts — and go beyond. Just as the name Okunomichi suggests!

Please read and contemplate what I have prepared for you, beginning with the first essay of the series, and continuing in chronological order since they are presented following previous themes. I will endeavor to keep adding new ideas to share, and I would love to hear from you. Please free to Leave a Reply to contact me (click the link at the top of this article). Or write to Okunomichi575 (at) gmail.com.

Thank you for joining me and the rest of us.   —- Okunomichi

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In the Beginning was Chaos

Nebula

The Tarantula is one of the largest known star-forming nebula. Although it looks like chaos, the nebula is really forming stars.

In the Beginning was Chaos

This post was inspired by Elisabet Sahtouris (see previous post) who gave the definition of the Greek word chaos. In many of the creation myths the world began in utter darkness, in chaos, when all was in confusion. How did our orderly world develop out of the confusion? We ask, what is chaos?

Okunomichi has discussed chaos previously. You can find the posts by using the Search box on the right.

Chaos and Gaia’s Dance

The ancient Greek myth of Gaia’s Dance is described in Sahtouris’ Gaia’s Dance (see previous posts):

Once upon a time, there was only a great, dark emptiness called Chaos. There was nothing at all until a beautiful dancing goddess appeared. As she danced and danced, Gaia became Earth with forests and rivers, fishes and birds and animals, and eventually the people of Earth.

In the Greek creation myth, the great darkness and emptiness of Chaos is the great All That Is. How can nothing be everything?

Chaos and Plenum

In ancient Greece, chaos meant the possibility of everything in no-thing. Once things came into being, the universe was called cosmos which means the pattern of All That Is. The Greeks called this fullness in nothingness plenum. Plenum is also used in quantum physics.

The expression, the possibility of everything, reminds me of a benediction by Sanata Kumara (see earlier post). He would say before sending off a mission:

May all possibilities be open to you.

This is equivalent to saying:

May all opportunities be open to you.

Chaos and Plenum

The Greek definition of chaos in emptiness is taken up by physicists who call this emptiness the Quantum Void as well as the Quantum Plenum, for all possibilities are open.

Quantum physicist David Bohm has proposed that the nature of reality as we experience it in our physical world is an explicate order which has its ground in an implicate order. More about about this in the next post.

Order Out of Chaos According to Gaia’s Dance

We refer you again to Gaia’s Dance for the story of how Gaia the goddess and Gaia the Earth solved the problem of creating order in a beautiful and harmonious manner.

Order Out of Chaos According to Science

Order out of Chaos by Ilya Prigogine

Order Out of Chaos is the title of a book by Nobel Laureate Ilya Prigogine, physical chemist, and Isabelle Stengers, philosopher. As a physical chemist, Prigogine is concerned with the role of entropy:

“A new unity is emerging: irreversibility is a source of order at all levels. Irreversibility is the mechanism that brings order out of chaos.”

It is beyond our scope to go into the exposition, so we limit ourselves to the remark that quantum mechanics plays a role in this.

Science, Order, and Creativity

Another book of collaboration in which they expose their thoughts about order (in a non-technical way) is the book, Science, Order, and Creativity, by David Bohm and F. David Peat, both theoretical physicists, originally published in 1987. Here is an intriguing statement:

“But according to the metaphor that chaos is order, an increase in entropy has to be understood in a different way that is, in terms of a kind of change of order.”

2022.11.20 The following addendum augments the post.

Edgar Mitchell on Order and Chaos

Edgar Mitchell, astronaut on the 1971 Apollo 14 mission to the moon, wrote a bold book on his “journey through the material and mystical worlds.” The book, The Way of the Explorer, was published in 1996. Here are some of his remarks related to the chaos theory of Ilya Prigogine.

It wasn’t until the late 1970s that a physicist by the name of Ilya Prigogine described the most pervasive and important processes in the macroscale universe as far-from-equilibrium processes. He garnered the Nobel Prize for his work on dissipative structures, which he reported in his book, Order Out of Chaos. 

The salient characteristic of Prigogine’s discoveries about dissipative structures is that they are entropic processes, meaning they are not time-reversible. 

In nature, time has only one direction. We call this the arrow of time. … The arrow of time is completely defined by the direction of irreversible processes of which there are two in the macroscale universe: entropic and negentropic. …

But the process of the universe, as understood today, is that of transforming the enormous unstructured potential at the moment of the Big Bang into a structured macroscale reality that ten to eighteen billion years later resulted in human beings who can ask questions about that process. Perhaps we are a star’s way of knowing about itself.

The arrow of time is only knowable at the level of macroscale processes where energy is lost into the larger environment, or organizes into more complex structures through irreversible processes. 

By looking at very nonlinear behaviors in nature, scientists discovered certain repeating patterns of chaos and order, depending upon the scale of size. The closer one looks at the seemingly chaotic behavior of certain systems, new levels of order seem to emerge from the details. And beneath each level of order is another level of chaos, and so on.

End of addendum.

Next: Quantum Plenum of All Possibilities

***

Gaia’s Dance: All That Is

Gaia’s Dance by Elisabet Sahtouris

This is the fifth in the series of posts on the true nature of reality. Here we view Reality from a Gaian perspective.

Gaia’s Dance

Gaia’s Dance is a perceptive book about the living nature of our mother planet, Gaia. Scientist Dr. Elisabet Sahtouris can see the evolution of Earth as a dance of powerful energies. Not only does she look into ancient Greek and Vedic myths and past five-billion-year Earth history, but interprets the latest scientific findings and looks ahead into the future as well. She shows us how we’ve crippled Gaia and what we can do to make her healthy again, along with transforming our own human foibles and destiny. The book is entitled, Gaia’s Dance: The Story of Earth and Us, 2018 . This book is written in a comfortable style for non-specialists to understand the complex science. Other titles of Sahtouris include:  Earthdance: Living Systems in Evolution, A Walk Through Time: From Stardust to Us; and Biology Revisioned with Willis Harman.

The Dance of the Universe

“Every piece of matter, everything we know, is a beautiful ballet made of countless invisible dancers’ movements together. It is a dance too small to see, and yet so large it is the whole universe!

“This reminded some physicists that ancient people in India had called the universe the dance of Shiva and his wife, Shakti…and the dance of living nature, of the whole universe, is All That Is.

“Physicists everywhere now understand the universe this way, showing us that matter is a moving dance of energy forming endless patterns. What ‘matters’ is the design of the dance. People everywhere are getting this, too, that we are all One, all individually and together a single energy dance, all of us affecting each other’s lives, all of us co-creating our dance now and always.

“Perhaps the biggest question in science now is about the nature of this basic energy of All That Is. Just like the hunt for the tiniest indivisible ‘original’ particle from which all matter is composed, scientists now hunt for the original energy from which all the matter in the universe is made. Some physicists believe it is what we call consciousness as was, and still is, believed in the Vedic science of India; others disagree.”

Sea of Energy Model

Scientists have begun to abandon the popular Big Bang theory. Now scientists believe that the universe that we know began as ripples of energy like waves on a sea of energy, or like the breath of a living organism. In the 20th century, Einstein’s theory of relativity showed that matter is equivalent to energy. And quantum mechanics theory posits that everything is connected, which agrees with the ancient teachings of sages that All is One. What is it that makes All One?

Keyboard Model

Elisabet Sahtouris suggests we imagine the stuff of the universe as like a musical keyboard. It does make some sense, since musical notes are vibrations of different frequencies. The lowest keys/notes are the particles of Matter, the middle keys are the electromagnetic energies of light, and the highest keys are the high frequencies of Spirit. In this model, each of us is a being of Matter-Energy-Spirit. Einstein showed that matter and energy are the same thing. But what is this “same thing”? We are now beginning to accept the ages-old teaching of the Vedas that this basic stuff is consciousness, consciousness which is Spirit. Consciousness has all these vibrations of energy of the keyboard, from Spirit to Energy to Matter.

Consciousness: All That Is

The universe is All That Is. We are All That Is. 

What is “All That Is”? Well, isn’t it what consciousness is — pure energy? Physicists call All That Is the quantum field, a field of pure energy.

We will go into further consideration of the quantum field and we will be sharing further thoughts on consciousness in following posts.

The Evolving Dance

In the final chapter of Sahtouris’ Gaia’s Dance, she shares her wisdom with the reader.

“We humans, as we have seen, are still quite new compared with so many other species, yet we are already forming a still newer and larger global body of humanity. We are taking evolution to a new stage — one in which we are aware of what we are doing, one in which we organize ourselves by ideas instead of by instincts — one in which we can know ourselves as spirit having a human experience, as some people say, and knowing, or waking up to, our Oneness, our presence in All That Is.”

“If people all over the world come to love their own lives as part of Gaia’s Dance, Gaia’s big brain experiment may prove to be well worth the risk. We will all know that we are still young, as a human species, and can make the future as bright as we would like it to be. With our love and cooperation, Gaia’s Dance will go on in creative balance and harmony — both for itself and as part of the greater harmonies of the whole universe.”

In the Beginning …

The ancient Greeks said that the universe originated with the dance of the goddess Gaia. Dancing brought order out of chaos. Let’s take a further look at chaos.

Next: In the Beginning was Chaos

***

We Are Gaians

Gaia, Earth, by NASA. Click to enlarge

As we approach the Age of Aquarius, we must settle our debt to our mother planet, Gaia.

“Gaia is the Great Mother of All, giver and protector of life.”  

Elisabet Sahtouris

We feature the contributions of James Lovelock and Elisabet Sahtouris for showing us to view the Earth as Gaia, a living, breathing, dancing system, and Michael Lindfield for urging us to act as Gaians. Gaia is the Greek name for our mother planet Earth, and as well is a goddess whose dance created All That Is in our universe.

Gaia Theory of James Lovelock

James Lovelock is the inventor of the electron capture detector (which made possible the detection of atmospheric nano-pollutants) and of the microwave oven. Moreover, James Lovelock originated the Gaia theory in the 1970s. Even today, he is an active environmentalist and futurist.

The Gaia Theory describes Earth as a living system, an organism made up of organisms much as the plants and animals and human beings that we know. James Lovelock’s classic book, Gaia: A New Look at Life on Earth, originally published in 1982 by Oxford University Press (OUP), has been republished by OUP in 2016. 

Lovelock has published a number of additional books on Gaia and the environment. His recent books include:  A Rough Guide to the Future, and The Revenge of Gaia.

Gaia’s Dance and Elisabet Sahtouris

Elisabet Sahtouris PhD is an internationally known evolution biologist, futurist, author and speaker. She has a broad and deep understanding of the scientific and cultural aspects of Earth’s evolution. Sahtouris earlier wrote Earthdance: Living Systems in Evolution, 2000.  She has written the highly acclaimed “children’s book for grownups” which she has entitled, Gaia’s Dance: The Story of Earth and Us, 2018 . Gaia’s Dance will be reviewed in detail in the next post.

We are Gaians

Michael Lindfield, July 2022:

“As a Gaian we think, feel and act within a deeply sensed knowing that the whole Earth lives inside of us and that we live inside the whole Earth…A Gaian is a microcosm of Gaia — a sacred space of synthesis where Life meets Life and knows itself to be One with All. A human being lives on the Earth while a Gaian lives AS the Earth.”

Michael Lindfield stimulates individuals and organizations to unleash the creativity of the human spirit in meeting the urgent need of our times and the compelling call of a more just and joyful future. Lindfield is co-founder of the Science of Group Work initiative, and he serves as Board President of Meditation Mount in Ojai, California. Lindfield is the author of The Dance of Change.

Question

Can we learn to behave as Gaians before it is too late to save Gaia and ourselves?

Let us learn more about the Gaian worldview as expressed by Elisabet Sahtouris.

Next: Gaia’s Dance: All That Is

***

True Nature of Reality

Milky Way over Rocky Mountains photo by Jeremy Thomas (click to enlarge)

Preface

It has been a while since Okunomichi last posted. We have been caught up in an outpouring of awakening energies that we had to pause and assimilate before we could communicate with you. We are expanding our field of attention to toward cosmic consciousness and exploring the true nature of reality. We are integrating wisdom of the past with the existential crisis of today as we look toward the future. The keywords of our categories and tags are more inclusive of the spiritual integrated with today’s emerging physical science — which is moving toward the spiritual. Soon, we may return to no separation between physical and spiritual science. Nor is there really any separation between our physical and spiritual natures.

True Nature of Reality

What is the true nature of reality? I have always wanted to know. That’s why I academically studied physics and astrophysics, and researched and published peer-reviewed papers. I could not get a handle on infinity nor on eternity. The answer to the true nature of reality does not lie in the physical world.

Consciousness

I discovered consciousness. Of course, we all know what we mean by ordinary consciousness as cognition and awareness. True consciousness is more than that. It is being aware of being aware. It is becoming aware that we are more than separate physical beings. We are also spiritual beings. We are the consciousness that connects us to the three-dimensional and higher dimensional worlds.

The Law of Unity

The world’s Ageless Wisdom traditions have always taught that We are All One in the Universe, with the Universe. There is a vibrating energy similar to the light we can see but of frequencies that we don’t sense with our physical senses. This light of consciousness is called Love, Unconditional Love, that unites All in the Universe.

The Ageless Wisdom

The Ageless Wisdom is also the Perennial Philosophy, the esoteric teachings that have been taught in mystery schools over the ages and all over the Earth. Teachers include Helena P. Bavatsky after her trip through the HImalayas, and Alice A. Bailey with ascended master Dwaj Kuhl in the 20th century, and many more in the 21st century. The Ageless Wisdom is truly ageless and perennial, for it is the secret teaching of the true nature of reality. Ageless Wisdom teaches that we are spiritual beings in physical bodies. We come from a non-physical dimension, and we are all connected through consciousness. Consciousness is the foundation of all in the universe.

The Ageless Wisdom has been a highly esoteric teaching, that is, it is not for the general public. However, It is now becoming more exoteric, out in the open as masses of people are becoming more spiritually aware. This is part of the movement of energy in our solar system and spiritual evolution in general.

Yellow Sky by Nicholas Roerich, 1874-1947

Wosite Wisdom

In the last dozen years, my focus has been in studying the ancient wisdom of the Jōmon period in Japan, called Wosite (Wo-si-te or Wo-shi-te). The indigenous people of the Japanese archipelago developed a unique high civilization in the span of 15,000 years after the end of the last Ice Age. The spoken and written Wosite language is based on fundamental creative energies. However, Wosite knowledge and wisdom went underground due to political changes beginning two thousand years ago. Wosite has been revived in the last six decades. I am the first American student of Japanese Wosite teachers. It is my sacred responsibility to share Wosite with the English-speaking world.

For Wosite is Ageless Wisdom.

Wosite Cosmology chart by Sakata Shoko

Gaia and a New Humanity

For a long period of time, we humans have dug ourselves deeply into exploring and exploiting the physical world. We have created a situation which is becoming more and more untenable, unsustainable, and unstable. It threatens the very existence of our Mother Planet and humanity. Gaia is the Greek goddess of Earth, viewed as the mother of all creation. The name Gaia was revived by James Lovelock (26 July 1919 – 26 July 2022) in his Gaia theory.

Prophets of old and new times have predicted an evolved humanity with higher consciousness. Gaia herself is evolving into a higher dimensional spiritual being. If we don’t evolve with her, we will be left behind.

Enlightened Beings in Japan

How did the world’s great civilizations pop out of the mundane? Enlightened beings, ascended masters, have incarnated on Earth to teach the Wisdom and to develop human society.

An enlightened being such as Sanat Kumara must have engendered the advanced civilization of Wosite. One such person mentioned in Wosite texts is a human Kami (a person with super-high consciousness) who organized the spoken and written Wosite language and taught skills and technologies to the indigenous people. He taught the cosmology of how life is created from energy. He attributed such deep knowledge to even earlier ancestors.

Sanat Kumara from Arcturus

Another ascended master to have been in ancient Japan of 10 million years ago is Sanat Kumara. Sanat Kumara is spoken of in ancient Vedic teachings and in more modern times by Blavatsky and Bailey and others. He has transmitted telepathic messages that he is originally from the system of the star Arcturus, and visited Mt. Kurama in northern Kyoto 10 million years ago. “Kura” in Arcturian means “portal” or “stargate.” Arcturus is a very bright star in the constellation Boötes. Sanat Kumara refers to himself as extra-galactic, for it is possible that Arcturus is astronomically from another galaxy. 

Mt. Kurama

I have visited sacred Mt. Kurama several times and I’ve noticed a shrine to Sanat Kumara. I long wondered what it was doing at Kurama Dera, a supposedly Japanese Buddhist temple. There are three statues in the hondo main temple. One of them is an unusual being who is said to have come from Venus six million years ago. Maōson may be a later interpretation of Sanat Kumara. When I asked the Abbess of Kurama Temple about Maōson, she explained that he is an energy being and further, that all in the Universe is energy. 

Maōson statue aka Sanat Kumara in Kurama Temple

Global Movement

There is an awakening movement around the world. More and more people are meditating, spreading Unconditional Love, and evolving human consciousness. Humanity is becoming increasingly Gaian, people who are One with our Earth Mother. Soon we will be full citizens of our Milky Way Galaxy and participate in the evolution of the galaxies in this Universe. 

True Nature of Reality

This is the true Nature of Reality: infinite and eternal. This is the Ageless Wisdom for us as we evolve our consciousness toward enlightenment.

Next: Starseed Messages

***

Kazutama by Kobayashi Bigen

KobayashiCover

Editor’s note:

Kototama is the spirit of sound. Kazutama is the spirit of numbers, i.e, numerology. Studying the kototama-kazutama lectures of Yamakoshi Sensei, we wanted to know how Ise Jingu hid the teaching of kototama-kazutama in the shinmei-zukuri style of shrine design, and the significance of the number 41. We turned for clarification to the book by Kobayashi Sensei, Koshinto Nyumon, 1998, pp 79-81 and 156-164.

Before we start, here are three units of measurement for constructing buildings in Japan:   1 jo = 10 shaku;  1 shaku = 10 sun ~= 12 inches.

Ise shinmei-zukuri, see Kobayashi, pp 79-81.

Chigi are the crossed rafter ends on shrine gables. Chigi also means a pledge, a promise, as between man and wife. The expression, chigi wo musubu, means a deep connection is made. Chigi wo tateru means to ask what a kami is saying.

Kobayashi on kazutama_0001

The Imperial Ise Naiku and Geku shrines each have the kazutama numeral 41 in their four enclosures/fences plus one for the center honden. See Kobayashi’s Figure 6 p 80, shown above; they show the ground plans of Ise Naiku (left) and Ise Geku (right). So this is how the number 41 is encoded in the shrine grounds. The width of the Naiku honden is 369 sun; depth 180 sun. The Geku honden is approximately the same shape, so far as we can tell from the maps.

Torii no kasagi, the rail across the top of a torii, represents the great creator kami Amenominakanushi. The right and left sides (as we look from the front of the torii), respectively, represent Takamimusubi and Kamimusubi.  Thus, the torii is a symbol of kototama.

The shimenawa twisted rope appears in the story of the opening of the Amanoiwato cave. It represents the uchuu no ugoki, the movement of the universe. The ‘beginning’ and the ‘end’ of the shimenawa are respectively the Amatsu kami [kami of the cosmos] and the Kunitsu kami [kami of earth]. (The Kunitsu shrines are the Izumo, Kumano, Okuninushi, etc., shrines dedicated to Kunitsu kami.)

Kototama and kazutama have been connected for a long time. The uchuu universe is a tremendously large living organism; it includes stars, the sun, …, down to electrons and elementary particles. Each thing has a principle, a nousaku, and all together have integrated principles.

Kazutama

These are Figures 8 – 16 on pp 156ff of the book.

Kobayashi Fig 12-13

Figures 12 and 13

Kobayashi 8 - 9

Figures 8 and 9

Kobayashi 10-11

Figures 10 and 11

Figure 8 is a table of nine digits called a magic square; all rows, columns, and diagonals sum to 15.  The central number is five.

Figure 9 shows the eight directions, each having value 15.

Figure 10 shows just the five numbers from table 8 that form a cross (a + sign). The row numbers are 3, 5, 7; the column numbers are 9, 5, 1.

Figure 11 shows five numbers that form an X. The numbers in the X are 4, 10, 6, and 2, 10, 8, where 10 replaces 5 in the center.

When an X is superimposed over a +, we get a figure with eight spokes as in Fig. 12. Figure 12 represents the key to kototama and kazutama. It is Rei Shisou, the thought of spirit, shisou no genri, principles of worldview (shisou, thought; genri, principles). There are eight nodes numbered 1 through nine; the number 5 is the center. We interpret this as meaning there are eight forces plus a central force. The digits on opposite sides of each of four lines passing through the center sum up to ten. There are thus four tens which equal forty. Adding the center point gives us the numeral 41. In kazutama numerology 41 is equivalent to 5.

***  The numerals 41 and 5 denote kami.   ***

Figure 13 is another version of Rei Shisou. This swastika-like figure has nine nodes with the 5 in the center. It looks much like the magic square in Table 8.

Kobayashi Fig 15-16

Figures 15 (R) and 16 (L)

Kobayashi Fig 14

Figure 14

The tables in Fig. 14 are kazutama charts. This figure is made up of three tables. The largest one at the top shows all fifty syllables plus ’n’. Each of the fifty sounds of the Japanese syllabary has a number associated with it; the numbers run from 1 through 50. The lower right chart continues the numbering from 51 through 75 of the dakuon, the voiced syllables. On the left is the numerology table for the Roman alphabet.

Figures 15 and 16.  When a circle is divided by four ‘petals’ as in Fig. 15, each is worth 10; thus four tens plus the center equals 41. Figure 16. There are eight ‘petals’, each is worth 5; thus 41 again.

Figs 17 - 21

Figures 17 – 21

Figures 17 – 21 show us how the number 369 arises. Figure 17 shows the development of the final table in Fig. 18, starting with Table 8. Please note the placements of the nine digits, shown again as Fig. 19. (For details, see Michio Kushi, Nine Star Ki.) When complete as in Fig. 18, we note that the numbers 1, 11, 21, 31, 41, 51, 61, 71, 81 appear in certain special places. The number 41 is in the center.

The 9 by 9 magic square of Fig. 18 is composed of nine 3 by 3 magic squares. The upper right magic square sums to 114; the one to its left to 135, etc. These nine squares then simplify to a 3 by 3 square, Fig. 20. Figure 20 shows the sums for each of the rows and columns of the nine squares.

The final result is shown in Fig. 21. Figure 21 shows the totals for the nine squares. Note that the central square totals 369. The number 369 is also obtained by directly summing the nine numbers in the diagonals of Fig. 18, or the nine numbers of the central row, or of the central column.

***   The number 369 is the kazutama of Amaterasu Ohmikami.   ***

Kobayashi’s Commentary

The Kojiki was written under Tenmu Tennō (天武天皇, Tenmu-tennō, c. 631 – October 1, 686) who was the 40th emperor of Japan. This was after a war that joined all the tribes of Nihon. The Kojiki was completed in 712 C.E. The Kojiki probably included parts of five books: Takenouchi Monjo, Hotsuma Tsutae, Kukami Monjo (Kuji Sendai Hongi), Katakamuna, and Uetsufumi. These five books, hidden until now, are currently coming out. The Kojiki, on the surface, was written for the people of Nihon and tells  about the great imperial family. The Nihon Shoki, on the other hand, was written to show the Chinese the history of the nation of Nihon. It is the Kojiki that contains kototama in disguise.

The Amatsu kami, the divine kami, came from Heaven to Takaamahara (Taka ama hara, High Plain of Heaven). The Kunitsu kami, the earthly kami, were born on the land of Nihon (Earth). These kami are part of the first 17 kami to appear.

The kazutama 41 is the creator kami Amenominakanushi; it is also tamashi no hataraki (the working of spirit), and ichi sei shi kon (one spirit, four souls of Shinto).

Misogi purification practice accomplishes isuzu wo seiri suru, i.e., misogi puts the isuzu 50 sounds in the right order. During the course of a person’s life, one’s isuzu often goes out of order, out of balance. This is corrected by practicing misogi.

Ise means i no se, where ‘i’ means jose mother, and ‘se’ means imose father; thus ise refers to the ancestral mother and father, Isanami and Isanagi. Place names with two syllables are very old place names. For example, Ise, Miwa.

Finally, it is important to understand that:

***   Kototama and kazutama are closely connected with the people of Nihon.   ***

Okunomichi’s Commentary

The kazutama of 41 being equivalent to 5, and 5 signifying five kami may have deep meaning for those who know the Wosite documents (see other posts on Okunomichi and on WoshiteWorld.) The five kami may represent the five creative energies of the Wosite kototama.

***

Chaos of Creation

Source, by Rowena Pattee Kryder

As we saw in the previous post, chaos can be good news. Let’s consider chaos a bit further. Creation myths around the world begin with a form of chaos: darkness, clouds, mud,… In the book by Rowena Pattee Kryder, Source: Visionary Interpretations of Global Creation Myths, is a Preface by Stanley Krippner, Ph.D. Dr. Krippner writes:

“I see myths as time-honored stories, social narratives, or personal constructs that address existential or spiritual human issues.”

“Creation myths often state a dilemma, but human beings must embark on their own journey to resolve the paradox of existence.”

“Dr. Kryder’s reminder that beyond the diversity of existence there is unity, wholeness with the Source of it all, is a gift. These ancient creation myths can provide metaphors still worthy of incorporation into the personal myths that are hammered out each day on the anvil of people’s lives.”

Dr. Kryder, in her last chapter, relates creation myths to cosmogenesis of modern physics. In particular, she addresses the super-implicate, implicate, and explicate orders in the theory of quantum physicist David Bohm. She concludes:

“In general, the creation myths imply that we have the wholeness within us. We are the wholeness — one with the Source. We need only release attachment to our limited identities, forms, images and dramas. Then we realize what is always true: We are one with Creation and one with Source at once, by simply being who we are — and aware of who we are.”

Chaos can indeed be good news. Chaos can lead to oneness with each other and with Source.

***

“Chaos is good news!”

Snapshot from a computer simulation of the formation of large-scale structures in the Universe, showing a patch of 100 million light-years and the resulting coherent motions of galaxies flowing towards the highest mass concentration in the centre. The snapshot refers to an epoch about 10 billion years back in time. The colour scale represents the mass density, with the highest density regions painted in red and the lowest in black. The tiny yellow lines describe the intensity and direction of the galaxy’s velocities. Like compass needles, they map the infall pattern and measure the rate of growth of the central structure. This depends on the subtle balance between dark matter, dark energy and the expansion of the Universe. Astronomers can measure this effect using large survey of galaxies at different epochs in time, as shown by the new research.

The world is in a difficult time. We can even say it is a time of chaos. How can chaos be good news?

We came across these words from Tibetan master Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche:

“Chaos should be regarded as very good news.”

This sentence appears in his book, The Myth of Freedom and the Way of Meditation. Here is the context.

“The Lion’s Roar is the fearless proclamation that any state of mind, including the emotions, is a workable situation, a reminder in the practice of meditation. We realize the chaotic situations must not be rejected. Nor must we regard them as regressive, as a return to confusion. We must respect whatever happens to our state of mind. Chaos should be regarded as very good news…. Whatever occurs in the samsaric mind is regarded as the path, everything is workable. It is a fearless proclamation — the lion’s roar.”

The following is a commentary on Trungpa Rinpoche’s quote in the book by Patricia Donegan, Haiku Mind: 108 Poems to Cultivate Awareness and Open Your Heart. She writes:

“It doesn’t always feel that way, but the chaos is a moment or time of lack of control and of surprise, in which anything is possible, beyond our judgment of good or bad. In Tibet it is believed that the enlightened Buddha energies manifest in either peaceful or wrathful forms, depending on what is called for, to protect and awaken us. The reason why it is ‘good news’ is because the nonfixed, chaotic state of things creates an open field in which new things can emerge and grow.”

Let us be fearless and use this opportunity to create a better world for all.

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MIND OF SHINTO

The World of Shinto, 1985

Rarely do we see deep thoughts of Shinto in open literature. This unassuming book is valuable not only for Shinto studies, but also for consciousness studies in various spiritual traditions. This post is but one of a number of Okunomichi’s series on consciousness and Mind. By Mind, we refer to the great Mind of Universe as well as the higher consciousness of the human Mind.

The World of Shinto, Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai, 1985, 268pp, 4892374113.

The contents of this book were first made into modern Japanese in 1977 by Professor Kamata Jun’ichi of the Okura Institute for Spiritual Cultures. Then it was rendered into English by Norman Havens of Kokugakuin University. The book is published by the Buddhist Promoting Organization.

The book contains a number of essays by members of notable Shinto families. We present excerpts from five essays written during the 12th, 14th, and 16th centuries.

p29

Nakatomi no Harae Kunge (An Explication of the Nakatomi Liturgy of Purification)

Written near the very end of the Heian (794 – 1185) or early in the Kamakura period (1185-1333).

“The individual mind, my mind, should be viewed as something which communes with heaven and earth, nature, the cosmos. When considered in this way, we know that the gods ruling the cosmos exist within my very mind. When I come to this realization, I can comprehend the mind of the deities within my own mind. And that becomes the purification of no-mind, no-thought. When I confront the deity with this no-mind, no-thought, god and man are united, namely, I become one with god, and it is clear that all my thoughts, all my desires, are in communion with god. Namely, this is a means, a discipline for knowing my own mind, and by that, I am changed into my true self. The union of god and man means the road whereby I return to myself.”

Notes: Nakatomi no harae refers to the ritual invocations of the oharae great purification ritual which was recited on the last day of the sixth and twelfth months by the Nakatomi clan. The Nakatomi no Harae Kunge text is the oldest-known commentary on this ritual. The commentary found in the text is based upon the esoteric teachings (taimitsu) of the Tendai Buddhist sect.

p36

Toyoashihara Jinpuu Waki (A Simple Record of the Divine Wind in Japan, by Jihen*, 1340)

“The correct way of Shinto practice is not to be misled by senseless words and theories, but merely to seek the sole true source of the mind [kokoro]. To know its origin and ultimate, and to become one with it, one must merely endeavor earnestly. Not to be led astray on false paths, but to awaken to the root of the Way, and to teach that Way even to fools, and to those who have forgotton virtue and become lost — such is the true method of Shinto practice. To act in such a way is to be in accord with the command of heaven, the fundamental Way of the universe; it can be said to be in communion with the fundamental spiritual essence of the universe.”

*Jihen was the son of the Shinto diviner Urabe Kaneaki. He was a Buddhist and became interested in Shinto, developing a unique viewpoint and theory regarding Shinto. Jihen was a strong influence on Shinto thought in the Nambokuchō and Muromachi eras, formulating the “Root, Branch and Flower” doctrine (konpon shōka, wherein Shinto represented the root, Confucianism the branches, and Buddhism the flower of the order of all things).

p38

Shinto Yuraiki (Records of the Origins of Shinto, by Yoshida Kanetomo** 1435-1511)

“That which governs heaven and earth is called deity [kami]. That which governs the individual things in the world is called spirit [rei], while that which governs the individual human being is called mind [kokoro]. At the same time, the human mind is the very place where the kami—who govern the entire universe—dwell, a sacred place within which thus resides the root origin of the cosmos and all things. “

**Yoshida Kanetomo was the founder of Yoshida Shinto (Yuiitsu, “One and Only Shinto”). He was from the family of Shinto diviners called Urabe. They served as priests for the Yoshida, Hirano, and Ume no Miya shrines.  

p38

Yuiitsu Shinto Myoubou Youshuu (Essentials of the Distinguished System of “The One and Only Shinto,” by Yoshida Kanetomo, 1435-1511

“The center of heaven and earth is kami. Kami is also the center of all things. Even devils and beasts—compassionless things—have kami at their center. The core of grass and trees, this is kami. If so, then how can it be that the human center, mind [kokoro] can be anything but kami? Certainly, the human mind, too, is kami. The spirits possessed by all things within this world—there is none that is not kami. There is nothing within which the kami does not dwell. “

p39

Shinto Taii (An Outline of Shinto, by Yoshida Kanetomo, 1435-1511)

Kami is that which was there before the appearance of heaven and earth, and which gave form to them; that which surpasses the yin and the yang, yet has the quality of them. This kami is thus an absolute existence, governing the entire universe of heaven and earth, yet at the same time, it dwells within all things, where it is called spirit [rei]; omnipresent within human beings, it is called mind [kokoro]. “

  ” In other words, human mind communes with the kami which is ruler of heaven and earth; mind and kami are one and the same. Kami is the root origin of heaven and earth, the spiritual nature of all things, and the source of human destiny. Itself without form, it is kami which nurtures things with form. Residing within man’s “five organs,” the deepest part of the human, kami becomes the five kami. “

   “For this reason, the character 神 is read not only as “kami,” but also as “tamashii” [spirit or soul]. We see color with our eyes, yet the color is not in our eyes. That which is the root source of our seeing color is kami. We hear sounds with our ears, yet it is not the ear which produces the sound. That which is the hearing is kami. Our noses’ smelling, our mouths’ tasting, the feeling of hot and cold by our skin—all these are the same. And from this, we know that mind is the dwelling place of the kami, one and the same with the origin of heaven and earth. “

Note: We suggest you re-read these essays, substituting for kami, the words Mind or consciousness. The Japanese word, kokoro, means heart-mind, heart, or mind. 

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Kototama and “Now” — An Izumo Taisha Shinto Perspective

Izumo Taisha

KOTOTAMA

Okunomichi and WoshiteWorld are deeply interested in the study and practice of Kototama. This is another in the Kototama series of expository articles. Here, we share a Shinto view of Kototama. We received the statements below from a representative of Izumo Taisha Grand Shrine. 

Introduction

Izumo Taisha (Izumo Ōyashiro) is one of the oldest and largest Shinto shrines in Japan. The taisha enshrines Ōkuninushi no Ōkami, kami of earth and spiritual world.

Shinto is the native Japanese religion which is based on traditional nature worship and animism. It does not have a particular founder, doctrine, or scripture. This is similar to old Hawaiian and Native American religions.

Nakaima, The “Now”

The word Nakaima comes from a national history book, Shoku Nihongi, Sequel to Chronicle of Japan, 797 CE [sequel to Nihon Shoki, 720 CE]. Nakaima is made up of two words, naka and ima, where the former means middle and the latter means now, the present time.

As Shinto does not have concepts about heaven and hell in the hereafter, “this world” is considered the most valuable and important time for all lives. It is the “middle” between the past and the future. “Now” is the precious time to reflect the past and expect the future.

Kototama of Norito

Shinto prayers, norito, are based on Kototama, the worship to words and language itself. From ancient times, it is said that, “The words can move the heaven and the earth” especially in the Japanese poems (waka, tanka). Traditionally, people use and choose words very carefully when they compose the poems because of Kototama, especially yamato kotoba (ancient Japanese classical words). This is why norito is composed only from yamato kotoba. When the words are pronounced, Kototama is involved — with its vibration toward the world.

Kototama and Nakaima

In Shinto cosmology, Kototama is the basic tool to affect Nakaima.  

Experience Kototama and Nakaima

To experience Kototama in Nakaima, recite Ōharae no Kotoba, the prayer for Great Purification, one of the most famous norito. 

HARAE NO KOTOBA, PRAYER FOR PURIFICATION AND BLESSING

The Harae no Kotoba below is an invocation often recited at Izumo Taisha asking Ōkuninushi no Ōkami, and all the myriads of Kami to join in the ceremony. There are three basic types of harae purification and blessing:

  • the body (to maintain health and well-being, to heal or avoid illness;
  • the soul or spirit of the living and the dead;
  • our surroundings and natural environment.

The last three lines can be recited as a short prayer for purification and blessing.

Harae no Kotoba

kakemaku mo kashikoki Izanagi no Ōkami

Tsukushi no Himuka no Tachibana no Odo no

Ahagihara ni misogi harai tamaishi toki ni

narimaseru haraido no Ōkami tachi

kamunagaranaru Ōmichi no naka ni umarete

arinagara sono mikage woshi fukaku omowazute

sumekamitachi no mimegumi wo oroka ni omi

tarishitoki ni ayamachi okaseru wa saranari

ima mo tsumi-kegare aramu woba harai tamai

kiyome tamae to mousu kotowo yaoyorozu no

kamitachi tomoni kikoshimese to

kashikomi kashikomi mo mousu



harai tamai kiyome tamae

harai tamai kiyome tamae

harai tamai kiyome tamae

References

Izumo Taisha, Izumo Ōyashiro, website:  http://www.izumooyashiro.or.jp/’

Izumo Taisha: https://yamanomiya.wordpress.com/2015/06/22/eleven-shrines-in-izumo-izumo-taisha/

Norito and Oharae:  [https://japanshrinestemples.blogspot.com/2015/09/norito-incantations.html]

Kototama on Okunomichi and WoshiteWorld: Type the word “Kototama” in the Search box.

This post also appears on WoshiteWorld.

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