The Lord of Heaven is the Supreme Being, in whom mankind holds common belief. This Being was called “Lord on High” by the ancient Chinese, and has been known to the West through the ages as God. The Lord of Heaven worshipped by our church is the supreme power of the cosmos and is also the hierarch of our church. For over five thousand years, Chinese people have been “purifying body and mind to serve the Lord on High”, is also The Lord commonly worshipped by humans on earth.
天帝就是人類共同信賴的 上帝，亦是古代中國人以及許多世紀以來西方人共同所稱的 上帝。天帝教尊奉的 天帝，就是大宇宙的主宰，並是「天帝教」的教主，也是中國五千餘年來「齋戒沐浴，以事 上帝」之上帝，也就是地球上整個人類共同信仰的 上帝。
The T’ienti Teachings takes its fundamental teaching as the great cosmic Tao of the Lord of Heaven. His teachings reveal that the higher and lower realms of the cosmos require a unified and supreme object of belief, the Supreme Lord of the cosmos. But this is not limited to any one religion, because the religions of human world are all issued from the same source. One after another their founders were sent down to earth by command of the Supreme Lord. They were born among peoples of different regions, meeting the needs of time and environment. They created beliefs for salvation of the world’s people. And now mankind is at a crux of imminent destruction. All the world’s religions can be traced back to origins in the non-physical realm. They share a unified transmission of the Tao, and now meet together amidst a life-or-death crisis. It behooves them to look soberly at their mission in these times. While each proceeds in its own course of following the Tao and preaching, they will join hands and hearts to strive together, to save the pitiable human creatures on this earth.
「天帝教」是 天帝宇宙大道，為教化之根本。 天帝之教，在昭示人類，宇宙上下應有統一之最高信奉對象，為 宇宙大主宰，但是並不拘守一種宗教。因為人間所有宗教同出一源，先後均奉 宇宙主宰之命下降人間，生在不同地域民族，適應時代環境需要，創不同信仰救世渡人。在此人類毀滅迫在眉睫緊要關頭，地球上所有宗教追溯源頭于無形，同是一個道統，相逢于危急存亡之秋，自應認清時代使命，各自照常運作，行道教化，大家和衷共濟，同為拯救天下蒼生而奮鬥。
Therefore our church’s followers look to the source for the transmission of the Tao, recognizing that everyone belongs to one family and can still believe in their original religion. Even if they completely believe the doctrines of their respective faiths, and continue doing in-depth study, there is certainly no conflict or contradiction at all. What is more, followers of T’ienti Teachings observe precepts–called the Twenty Words of Truth or the Watchwords of Human Life. We make these Twenty Words a key lesson in our daily spiritual practice:
”Chung (忠, Loyalty)”, “Shu (恕, Forgiveness)”, “Lien (廉, Incorruptibility)”, “Ming (明, Insight)”, “Teh (德, Virtue)”, “Cheng (正, Rectitude)”, “Yi (義, Justice)”, “Hsin (信, Trustworthiness)”, “Ren (忍, Forbearance)”, “Kung (公, Fairness)”, “Po (博, Philanthropy)”, “Shiao (孝, Filial Piety)”, “Jen (仁, Benevolence)”, “Tz’u (慈. Compassion)”, “Chueh (覺, Awareness)”, “Chieh (節, Moderation or Fidelity)”, “Chien (儉, Frugality)”, “Chen (真, Truthfulness), “Li (禮, Propriety), and “Ho (和, Harmony)”.
These precepts combine the virtues of various religious teachings. Upon pledging themselves as followers of our religion, strivers first choose one or two watchwords as a fundamental guideline for self-cultivation and following the Tao. They integrate and connect other virtues with the one(s) they chose, and put them into action. This is to say, the Twenty Words are consistent with the spirit of their original religions. Religious believers have feelings of concern and pity instilled in them by the loving power of leaders in their various religions. Confucians have their “benevolence and righteousness”; Buddhists have compassion; Taoists have pure quietude; Christians have universal love; and Muslims have purity and truth. These fit perfectly with the overall spirit of our religion: “Understand the benevolence of Heaven and its life-giving generosity. Be close with your relatives and benevolent toward the people. Love your countrymen, love your fellow men, love living beings”. This is why strivers in our religion can believe in their original religions without contradiction. What is more, they will find the central thread and spirit of these faiths are consistent. This is the unity of religions, the oneness of the Tao’s origin.
Thus the followers of our faith need only live by the precepts, observing them in mind and body, vigorously putting them into practice. They should incorporate them into the fabric of daily lives with others. If they persist in embracing them and do not lose heart, they will naturally find the connection between this faith and the spirit of their original religion. In so doing they can help to bring about unity among religions and in the world; they can undo catastrophe before it takes physical form.
The precepts are a guide to bettering oneself, reaching out to others and making the cosmos one’s home. Our goals are to seek equality among peoples, religious unity and world unity. The fundamental practice of the T’ienti Teachings is the Three Strivings–within oneself, with Nature, and toward Heaven—and the ultimate aims are the equality of sacred and mundane, the unity of Heaven and man. Our followers can continue to have faith in their original religions. Let us strive together to avert the worldwide catastrophe of nuclear destruction and seek eternal peace and blessings for humanity!
First-Appointed Master Emissary
on Earth of T’ienti Teachings