Ofudesaki 01:022

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Ofudesaki (English).jpg
Author: Miki Nakayama
Date Published: 1998
Pages: 486 (English ed.)

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Part 17
unnumbered set

Ofudesaki 01:022 is a verse from the Ofudesaki. The English translation below is the sixth edition translation.


I shall press, not by force or word of mouth. semeru to te tezashi suru de wa nai hodo ni せめるとて てざしするでハ なほどに
I shall press by the tip of My writing brush. kuchi demo yuwan Fudesaki no seme くちでもゆハん ふでさきのせめ

Alternate English translations

Third Edition

Though I say I press, I will never press by force or by mouth, but with the tip of My writing brush.*


In explaining them, I shall not use My power, nor My tongue, but the tip of My writing brush.


Sixth edition note

1:22 The “tip of My writing brush” is fudesaki in the original. The name of this book comes from this term. In the Osashizu delivered on August 23, 1904, we are taught: “Until now, about everything, I taught by word of mouth. But you forget. Because you forget, I have informed you with the tip of My writing brush. The tip of My brush may seem light, but it is weighty. You must not take it lightly. It is the basis of My teachings.” Concerned that we forget what we hear, Oyasama committed the teachings to paper, beginning at the age of 72 and ending at about 85 (1869–1882?). The Ofudesaki consists of 1,711 verses.

Ofudesaki chushaku

This section contains translated material that has not yet been subjected to peer-review to check for accuracy and clarity. While the translator(s) have given their best effort to render Japanese text into English, we would like readers to keep in mind that the present translation may require further revising and refining. Any input to improve the present translation is greatly welcomed.

Translator(s): Roy Forbes

1:22 Although I say I will caution you, I shall not do so with physical strength as humans do. I will not scold you with My mouth (i.e., spoken words). I shall teach and caution you only by writing brush.

『おふでさき註釈』、p. 8


Commentary by Yoshitaro Ueda (2008)

From Michi no dai: Foundation of the Path 32:38

1:22 At first, it may sound as if the idea of “attack” or “blame” is hinted at (i.e., semeru). Yet we are told that, although God will “press,” it will not be done by physically pointing anything out. There is a theory that the Japanese word “tezashi” (here translated as “by force”) should be understood as “tedashi” (meddling or interfering). However, this theory is difficult to accept. It is true that in Wakayama and Nara people say “denden” in place of “zenzen” (“at all”). That is, “za ji zu ze zo” can become “da ji zu de do.” However, the converse of that hardly happens. This just goes to show that it requires meticulous thought to support a theory or idea even when it is concerned only with a single letter.

The meaning of the verse, then is that, although God will press, God will not physically point anything out to us or tell us by word of mouth. Instead, God will enlighten us with the tip of the writing brush.

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