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Ten aspects of God’s providence



Taishokuten-no-Mikoto たいしよく天のみこと is one of the “ten aspects of God’s providence.” It appears seventh on a list of sacred names in Chapter Four of The Doctrine of Tenrikyo. It represents the divine working (sewa 世話) of cutting off the ties of a child to its mother at birth as well as the cutting off the breath of life when one passes away for rebirth. It also represents the protection of cutting in general in the world at large.[1]

This aspect of the providence is explicitly mentioned in Ofudesaki verse 6:38 and referred to as the “scissors of the world” in verse 12:145.

Sacred name

The sacred name Taishokuten-no-Mikoto has no known antecedent in Japanese mythology. While it is assumed that the name is an original one as conceived by Miki Nakayama (Oyasama), there has been some speculation that Taishokuten-no-Mikoto may have derived from Taishakuten, a deity in the Japanese Buddhist pantheon.[2]

One explanation in the Tenrikyo tradition asserts that Taishokuten-no-Mikoto was named so because, when a globefish (or fugu, that is, its prior form in the muddy ocean) is eaten in great amounts (Taishoku) it will cause one “go to heaven” (ten) or shorten one’s life.[3] [4]

Representation in the Kagura Service

In the Kagura Service, the position of Taishokuten-no-Mikoto is reserved for a female administrative staff member of Tenrikyo Church Headquarters. A different dancer is assigned to the role each month.[5] The dancer representing Taishokuten-no-Mikoto stands in the northeast wearing a female mask and has a sash connecting her wrist to the mask of the dancer representing Kunitokotachi-no-Mikoto.

Form in the muddy ocean

According to the Truth of Origin, when God the Parent searched for materials to create human beings, a globefish was summoned from the northeast. Upon consuming her and testing the flavor of her mind, God decided to use her as the instrument for cutting.[6]

Form in the heavens

Taishokuten-no-Mikoto is represented in the heavens by stars located in the northeast.[3]

Ura-shugo or “indirect explanation of the divine providence”

Taishokuten-no-Mikoto is associated with Kokuzo Bosatsu (Ākāśagarbha), Myoken Bosatsu (North Star), Kishibojin (Hariti), “Anata-san” (Agata?) 縣さん,[3] as well as “Hashizume-sama” and “Jurai.”[7]

External links


  1. The Doctrine of Tenrikyo, p. 31.
  2. Becker, Carl B. “Concepts and Roles of God in Tenrikyo.” In The Theological Perspectives of Tenrikyo, p. 480.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 中山正善 Nakayama Shozen. 『こふきの研究』 Koki no kenkyu, p. 123.
  4. Kontani, Hisanori. My Lecture on the Koki, the Divine Record, p. 59.
  5. Morishita, Saburo S. Teodori: Cosmological Building and Social Consolidation in a Ritual Dance, p. 123.
  6. The Doctrine of Tenrikyo, p. 21.
  7. It is unclear what these refer to. They are mentioned in verse 142 of Ryosuke Yamazawa’s 1881 poetic version of the Divine Record.