御教え『観世音菩薩』

「文明の創造」昭和27(1952)年執筆

前項までに、観世音についての因縁を、色々な面から説いて来たが、そうなられるまでの根本と言えば全く素尊(すさのをのみこと)の暴圧が原因であった事は、すでに述べた通りである。ところが伊都能売神(いづのめのかみ)去り給いし後の日本は、どうなったかというと、その弟神であったのが、彼の天照天皇であって、この天皇は惜しくも、何の理由もなく俄かに崩御され給うたので、止むなくその皇后を立てて、御位に即(つ)かせられたのが彼の女性である天照天皇であった。今もなお天照大御神(あまてらすおおみかみ)が日の神でありながら女神として祀られているのは、そういう訳なのである。また以前私はかいた事があるが、素尊は日本の統治権を得んとして余りに焦り、目的のために手段を択ばず式で、力の政治を行った結果、人心は紊れ、収拾すべからざるに至ったので、ここに父君である伊邪那岐尊(いざなぎのみこと)の御勘気に触れ、譴責(けんせき)の止むなき事になった。というのは素尊は、本来朝鮮系統の神でもあったからである。しかもその後悔悟の情なく、依然たる有様なので、最後の手段として日本を追放される事になったのである。この時の事を『古事記』にはこう出ている。素盞嗚尊(すさのをのみこと)の素行(そこう)や悪政に対し、伊邪那岐尊の御尤(とが)めを蒙り、神遣(かむやらい)にやらわれたとあり、その行先は黄泉(よみ)の国であるが、黄泉の国には母神である伊邪那美尊(いざなみのみこと)が在(ましま)すので、罪の赦されるまで母神の許にいて、暫くの間謹慎すべく思って、出発の前、天に在す姉神天照大御神に暇(いとま)乞いをせんとしたのである。この事を『古事記』にはこう書いてある。素盞嗚尊はたちまち山川響動(どよも)し、天に昇らんとしたところ、それを知った天照大神は大いに驚き、さては弟素尊は、自分を攻めに来たのではないかと疑心暗鬼を抱いていたところへ、素尊は天に上り、天照大神に面会されたところ、どうも姉神の様子が普通でないので、これを見てとった素尊は、姉神は私を疑われているようであるが、自分の肚は何らの邪念はない。この通り潔白であるから、今その証しを御眼にかけると言い、素尊は剣を抜き天(あめ)の真奈井(まない)に水を注ぐや、たちまち三女神(みはしらのひめがみ)が生れた。すなわち市杵島姫命(いちきしまひめのみこと)、湍津姫命(たぎつひめのみこと)、田霧姫命(たぎりひめのみこと)である。すると天照大神は、では自分の清い心も見せようと申され、胸に掛けた曲玉(まがたま)を外し、同じく水に注ぎ揺らがしたところ五男神(いつはしらのひこがみ)が生まれた。すなわち天忍穂耳命(あめのおしほみみのみこと)、天穂日命(あめのほひのみこと)、天津彦根命(あまつひこねのみこと)、活津彦根命(いくつひこねのみこと)、熊野樟日命(くまぬのくすひのみこと)である。もちろんこれは比喩であって、実際はその時、素尊は三人の息女、天照大神は五人の重臣を呼んだのである。というのはこの時両神は、右の五男三女を証人として、一の誓約(うけい)をされようとしたからで、その誓約とは近江の琵琶湖一名志賀ノ湖(うみ)、また右の天の真奈井もそうであって、この湖水を中心として、東の方を天照大神、西の方を素盞嗚尊が領(うしは)ぐという約束をしたのである。つまり今日で言う平和条約である。これによってともかく一時小康を得たが、その後素尊は相変らず謹慎の色が見えないので、ここに本当の追放となったのである。この時の事を八洲河原の誓約(うけひ)と言われているが、今日でも琵琶湖の東岸に八州河原という村があるのは、この地点であったのであろう。

ここで昔から、人口に膾灸〔炙〕(かいしゃ)されている竜宮の乙姫という女神の事を書かねばならないが、これについては、少し遡って書く必要がある。それは伊邪那岐、伊邪那美尊から生れた五柱の男女の兄弟がある。すなわち長男は伊都能売天皇、次男が天照天皇、三男が神素盞嗚尊、長女が稚姫君命(わかひめぎみのみこと)、二女が初稚姫命である。そこで伊邪那岐尊は、最初伊都能売尊に日本を統治させ次で天照天皇次で天照皇后の順序にされたのであるが、素盞嗚尊には最初から朝鮮を統治させたのである。そうして素尊の妻神とされたのが、もちろん朝鮮で出生された姫神であって、この姫神が弟の妻神となった、言わば弟姫であるから、これを詰めて音(乙)姫と呼ばれたのであるが、昔から乙米姫とも言われたが、これは未婚の時に朝鮮名の中に、米の字が入っていたからであろう。

右のごとく、弟姫すなわち音姫は、夫(つま)神が流浪の旅に上られたので、それからは孤独の生活となったのはもちろんで、まもなく故郷の朝鮮へ帰り、壮麗な城廓を築き、宮殿内に多くの侍女を侍(はべ)らせ、空閨を守っていたのである。ところがその頃信州地方の生れである太郎なる若者が、漁が好きなので、常に北陸辺りの海岸から海へ出ていた。するとある時大暴海(おおあらし)に遭い、辛うじて朝鮮海岸に漂着して救われたが、当時としては日本人も珍しがられていた事とて、ついに男禁制の王城内にまで招ぜらるるに至ったのも無理はない。ところが当時女王格である音姫様は、寂寥(せきりょう)に堪えなかったからでもあろうが、とにかく御目通りを許されたところ、太郎という若者が、世にも稀なる美貌の持主であったから堪らない。一目見るより恋慕(れんぼ)の情堪えやらず、ついに何かの名目で、城内に滞在させる事となった。

そのような訳で、太郎に対する愛情は益々熱烈を加え、日夜離さず御傍に侍らせるという訳で、この事がいつか人民の耳に入り、ようやく非難の声喧(やかま)しくなったので、ここに絶ち難き愛着を絶つ事となり、素晴しい宝物を箱に納め、土産物として太郎に遣り帰国さした。これが彼の有名な玉手箱である。またこれを開けると白髪になるなどという伝説は、誰かの作り事であろうし、また浦島という姓は、朝鮮は日本の裏になっているからで、後世の作者がそういう姓を付けたのであろう。

そうして音姫が朝鮮の女王格であった時代は、日本も支那も圧倒されてしまい、印度以東は朝鮮の勢力範囲といってもいいくらいであった。もちろんそれは素盞嗚尊が、一時飛ぶ鳥も落す程の勢いであったからでもあり、その上音姫という女神は男勝りの女傑であったからでもある。ちょうどその頃印度の経綸を終えた観自在菩薩は、帰国しようとして南支方面にまで来たところ、まだ日本は危険の空気を孕(はら)んでいる事が分ったので、しばらくその地に滞在する事となったので、その時からが観世音の御名となったのである。という訳はつまり印度滞在中は、自在天の世を客観していたので観自在といい、今度は音姫の世を静観する事となったので、観世音と名付けられたのである。すなわち観世音を逆に読めば、音姫の世を観るという意味になる。そうしておいて菩薩は、南支那地方民に教えを垂れ給うたところ、何しろ徳高き菩薩の事とて、四隣の民草は親を慕うがごとく追々寄り集う有様で、この時から観音信仰はついに支那全土にまで行き渡ったのである。ところが御年も重ね給い、これまでで経綸もほぼ成し遂げられた事とて、ついにこの土地で終焉(しゅうえん)され給うたのである。そうして今日といえども支那全土すなわち満州、蒙古、西蔵(チベット)辺に到るまで観音信仰のみは、依然として衰えを見せないのは深い理由のある事であって、これもおいおい説くが、ここで遺憾な事は、南支地方に観音の遺跡がありそうなものだが、全然無いのは、全くその地方が幾度となく、兵火に見舞われ、地上にあるあらゆるものが消滅した結果でまた止むを得ないのである。


Kanzeon Bosatsu

Creation of Civilization, written by Mokichi Okada in 1952

 

I explained the fate of Kanzeon Bodhisattva, or Kanzeon Bosatsu in Japanese from various points of view so far. Originally speaking, he had to accept such fate owing to the violence committed by Susanoo-no-mikoto. It is as I already mentioned. Then what happened in Japan after Izunome-no-Kami left? The deity of his younger brother, or Emperor Amaterasu took over him but soon passed away without reason. Therefore, his empress was obliged to take the throne. It is Empress Amaterasu who is well known as a female deity in Japan. Therefore, Amaterasu-Oomikami is still worshipped as the sun god while Empress Amaterasu is a female deity.

 

As I previously also explained, Susanoo-no-mikoto was rushed to rule over Japan. He did anything to achieve his goal and governed the people with force. The society consequently became chaotic and out of control. He finally incurred the anger of his father, or Izanagi-no-mikoto and had to be reprimanded. It is because he showed no sign of remorse nor change at all. In addition, he is the deity who originally came of Korean linage. Therefore, he was expelled from Japan in the last resort.

 

“Kojiki”, or A Record of Ancient Matters describes this incident as follows; “Because of misbehaviour and misgovernment, Susanoo-no-mikoto was given the blame by Izanagi-no-mikoto and expelled to the realm of the dead.” His mother is the deity of Izanami-no-mikoto who lived there. He decided to stay with her and confined himself for a while until he was forgiven. Before leaving, he visited the deity of his sister in law, or Amaterasu-Oomikami to bid farewell. At that time, she lived in the world of heaven.

 

“Kojiki” describes this happening as follows; “Susanoo-no-mikoto resonated mountains and rivers when he was about to climb up the world of heaven. Amaterasu-omikami was very much surprised to hear that and suspected if he might come to attack her. When arriving at the heavens and visiting her, Susanoo-no-mikoto noticed something was wrong with her. Therefore, he told her that she seemed to be suspicious about him but he had no impure thoughts at all. In order to prove his innocent, he told her to show the evidence. He immediately drew his sword and put it into the water of Ama-no-manai, or a holy well in the heavens. Soon after that, three goddesses were born; they were Ichikishimahime-no-mikoto, Tagitsuhime-no-mikoto and Tagirihime-no-mikoto.

 

In response to him, Amaterasu-omikami told him to show her pure heart, too. She took off Magatama, or a comma-shaped bead on her chest and put it into the water as he did. Soon after that, five gods were born; they were Amenooshihomimi-no-mikoto, Amenohohi-no-mikoto, Amatsuhikone-no-mikoto, Ikutsuhikone-no-mikoto and Kumanukushibi-no-mikoto.”

 

That is, of course, a metaphor. In fact, Susanoo-no-mikoto called out three daughters and Amaterasu-omikami called out five ministers. It means two gods called out them as witnesses and intended to make a pledge in front of them. They pledged that Amaterasu-omikami rules the eastern regions form the centre of Lake Biwa and Susanoo-no-mikoto rules the western those. In a word, they concluded, what we call today, a peace treaty. Lake Biwa is located in Shiga and also called Lake of Shiga Ama-no-manai as mentioned above is also the same.

 

This pledge is called that of Yasu gawara, or the shore of River Yasu. Even now, there is a village called Yasu gawara on the eastern shore of Lake Biwa. The pledge would have been made there. In any case, things were settled down by this pledge for a while. However, Susanoo-no-mikoto still showed no sign of discreet even after that. Therefore, he was finally and truly expelled.

 

Here I explain a goddess called Otohime in the Palace of Dragon, who is widely spoken of. When I describe her, I should go back in time a little. There were five deities who were born between Izanagi-no-mikoto and Izanami-no-mikoto. The eldest son was Emperor Izunome, the second son was Emperor Amaterasu, the third son is Kamu-Susanoo-no-mikoto, the eldest daughter was Wakahimegimi-no-mikoto and the second daughter was Hatsuwakahime-no-mikoto. Izanagi-no-mikoto first had the eldest son, then the second son and finally Empress Amaterasu rule over Japan. As for Susanoo-no-mikoto, he was made govern Korea from the very start.

 

Otohime was a wife of Susanoo-no-mikoto. She was a goddess born in Korea. It means she became a wife of the brother of Emperor Izunome and Amaterasu. When you say a brother in Japanese, it is “ototo,” and a princess is “hime.” Therefore, she was called “Ototohime” or “Otohime” when shortening the word. She was also called “Oto-yone-hime” from a long time ago as the character “yone” is still remained, which was used for her Korean name when she was unmarried.

 

In this way, since Susanoo-no-mikoto wandered from place to place, Ototohime, or Otohime had to live alone, to be sure. She soon went back to Korea and built a magnificent castle. She kept protecting it with her maids during the absence of her husband.

 

At that time, a young man called Taro, who was born in Shinshu region and loved fishing, often went out to sea from around the shore in Hokuriku region. One time, he encountered a severe storm and drifted to the shore in Korea. He was barely saved. In those days, there was quite few Japanese in Korea and Korean people regarded them as a curiosity. Therefore, it is inevitable he was invited to her castle even though it is forbidden for men to enter.

 

It was also because Otohime, who had the status of a queen in Korea at that time, would not bear her loneliness. Anyway, Taro was granted an audience with her. As a matter of fact, Taro was a person with his incomparable beauty. Once she saw him, she couldn’t help but fall in love with him. She eventually let him stay in the castle.

 

In this way, she felt strong passion for him and let him be with her day and night. Someday, this reached to people’s ears and the voice of criticism were gradually raised. She consequently had to release her irresistible attachment to him and finally decided to let him return home. When leaving, he was given a box full of wonderful treasures as a souvenir. This is well known as Tamatebako. It is legendarily said that one’s hair turns white when opening it but this story would have been made up by someone. As Korea is behind the island of Japan, his first name Urashima would be named by the story author. When you say the behind the island in Japanese, it is “Urashima.”

 

When Otohime was in the position of a queen in Korea, Japan and China was overwhelmed by Korea. It is not too much to say that its power extended until east India. It is because Otohime was a spirited woman as well as Susanoo-no-mikoto was at the zenith of his power for a while.

 

Around that time, Avalokiteshvara finished what he intended to do in India and decided to go home. When he came to south China on the way back home, he knew that Japan was still in a dangerous situation. Therefore, he decided to stay there for a while. By the way, Avalokiteshvara is written as Kanjizai Bosatsu, whereas Mahesvara is as “Jizai-ten” in Japanese. “Kan” means to observe and “jizai” comes from the part of “Jizai-ten” in Japanese. While staying in India, Avalokiteshvara observed the world dominated by Mahesvara. Therefore, he was called Kanjizai Bosatsu. Then, at this time he looked on the world dominated by Otohime. He consequently renamed to Kanzeon Bosatsu. It is because “Oto” is written as the same Japanese character as “on.” That is, Kanzeon literally means to observe the world of Otohime.

 

While observing her, Kanzeon Bosatsu preached Buddhist teachings to people in south China. Because he was Bosatsu of virtue, he was admired by all the people around like their father and gradually gathered them. At this point, believers of Kanzeon Bosatsu had spread all over China. However, since he was getting old and almost finished what he had to do, he passed away there. When you look at all China, people still believe Kanzeon Bosatsu and their belief never fade off in Manchuria, Mongolia and even around Tibet. There is a deep meaning in it. I will explain it step by step. It is regrettable there is no remains related to the belief found in south China. They should be there. However, it is the result of that everything was burnt out and disappeared by numerous wars. It is pity but inevitable.

 

Translated by N.H.

You can read other teachings in English on Johrei.