True Parents and Our Responsibility (Part 2)
Reverend Sun Myung Moon
December 27, 1981
Translator: Bo Hi Pak
There are two different attitudes towards life among the members of the Unification Church. Some say: “I want to excel in everything I do and apply my utmost effort to achieve the goal.” But others say, “I’ll do whatever I can, as long as it doesn’t take too much effort.” Which attitude is yours? The leaders of the future will come from those who give their utmost effort and take the Church’s burdens upon themselves.
Let me give you a simple example of the qualifications for leadership. Recently I invited many Church leaders to eat with me at a Chinese restaurant. Some of the groups were very greedy to start eating while others waited until everyone else had been served. Which do you think is more qualified to be a leader? Oriental custom provides built-in training in this area: young people are taught to wait until their elders are served. The Western way is the opposite: young people assert their right to eat first and are not taught much respect for their elders. From Heaven’s standpoint, those who have learned the Oriental standard in such a situation are more qualified to be leaders.
You say that you want to become leaders in the Unification Church. Therefore you should be willing to receive discipline and training, particularly in learning to serve older people. You should be able to gain universal acceptance from people of all societies and races. Those who adopt the standards of Heaven will achieve such universal acceptance. White people must be able to win the acceptance of the black community; likewise, black people must be able to gain the acceptance of the white community. You must be able to live and work with people from different races without harboring any secret resentment in your heart.
It is very possible that when white people go to the spirit world and try to enter the door to Heaven, they will be met by a black security guard. Black people will have to be accepted by a white security guard. Under those circumstances, would anybody say, “I don’t really need Heaven”? If you were criticized by the security guard for not loving his race, wouldn’t you ask him for forgiveness so that you could enter? You would be willing to do anything in order to gain admittance into Heaven.
Suppose you found Satan standing by the door to Heaven, holding a sharp spear. If you were soft, he could pierce you and take you to hell, but if you were strong like a rock he could not touch you. The best way to gain entry into God’s kingdom in Heaven is to obtain a certificate of recognition signed by Satan while you are still living on earth.
I have received many such certificates from Satan. One of the most dramatic was during the Blessing of the 36 couples. Incredible controversy erupted at that time; people were praying to God, “Please don’t let Reverend Moon take my son away. Let him die tonight instead.” Now many of those same people are completely transformed and have become dedicated members.
At the time of the 36 couple Blessing, the entire nation of Korea opposed me. I was a villain in the eyes of the country. However, the situation has greatly changed. Now many Koreans are saying that Reverend Moon’s ideology offers the only hope for the future of Korea and the world.
Japan is another good example. Several years ago in Japan, I was commonly thought of as a terrible person, a supreme monster. However, the general opinion today is that Reverend Moon’s teachings hold the only hope for stopping communism in Japan. Don’t you think the United States will follow the same pattern?
Satan has written me off as a hopeless case. I have been enduring his attacks and persevering in spite of them for such a long time, he has signed my certificate with no reservations.
One the various categories of people is that of true men and women. Do you wish to become true men and women only within the society of the Unification Church, or on a universal scale? You aim to become true people on the universal scale not because you are Moonies but because you understand the truth and can appreciate the greatest value.
The Yardstick for True Men and Women
You can measure me by the yardstick of the Principle and tell if I am a true man or not. As a religious leader, I have done many unique things. No other religious leader of the past or present has been interested in assembling intellectuals of various faiths in order to help them direct their energies toward a more harmonious, peaceful world. Right now a conference is taking place in Hawaii with the unique title, “God: The Contemporary Discussion.” Top level theologians and thinkers are discussing various attitudes and beliefs about God. This is the first time such a conference has been organized and Reverend Moon founded it.
Christianity has been the source of the greatest opposition to me, but I have invested great amounts of energy and resources to help bring about a revival of Christianity. Jewish people as well have opposed me, but I teach that Judaism is the elder brother of the Unification Church. The Bible directs people to love those who persecute them. This has been my way of life.
What is the highest level to which someone could aspire: true man, true leader, true king, or true parent? Mankind is not hungry for a king or leader, but all people long for the love of a true parent. Don’t you, too? What kind of a title did God want to give to me? Do you reply “True Parent” just because you are Moonies? God wants to give the title True Parent to the person who has brought the deepest understanding of the universe and the aching heart of God, to the one who has shed the most tears and sweat for His sake.
During Jesus’ ministry there was no time when Judaism was truly close to embracing his teachings. However, at this time much dialogue has been occurring between representatives of Judaism, Christianity and the Unification Church. Two thousand years ago, Israel was a tiny country under the rule of the mighty Roman Empire. Similarly, the United States today is the Rome of the 20th century and Korea is under its dominion in almost every respect.
I have come to the mighty Rome of this era and have waged a war, in a way, against the social conditions here. Who do you think will surrender in defeat? Even though the government of the United States is bringing me into the courtroom, I will not be defeated. Instead, I shall declare a victory in that very place. Once that victory is proclaimed, it will prevent all possibility of our members ever having to shed their blood or die for the sake of God.
Suppose Jesus had been able to travel to Rome and wage a moral and spiritual crusade against that nation’s evils. Certainly the Roman authorities would have opposed him, but if he had been victorious over them, there would have been no need for the 400 years of terrible bloodshed and martyrdom which gave birth and power to the Christian religion. This is exactly what I am trying to accomplish today.
Communism is God’s worst enemy in His quest to build an ideal world. Who else but Reverend Moon is waging a worldwide battle against communism? Do you think God and His providence are headed in a direction opposite from me, or is God embracing me? The knowledge that God and history are embracing me gives me great confidence in our eventual victory. In the face of such support, no other power can defeat me. It doesn’t even matter if I am put into prison. Once I am liberated, the entire world will enjoy the same kind of liberation.
I know you feel that following me is a very difficult task. Sometimes you consider abandoning it. But even if you gave up, God would never give up, history would never give up, and I would never give up. Therefore, who would be left alone? The one who pulls away from God’s direction and guidance is actually withdrawing from the ultimate trend of history; he cuts himself off from the universe. Therefore, the consequences of joining this movement extend far beyond just the individual and his sphere. The individual who unites with God’s dispensation is joining with all of history — past, present, and future.
True Parents’ and Our Responsibility
Everyone will inevitably go to the spirit world. How terrible it would be if someone couldn’t lift his face before God in the spirit world! Even in hell such a person would be an outcast. Those there would criticize him for being a real fool. “We came to hell out of ignorance of God and His principles,” they would say, “but you knew the truth and threw it away.” That would be the worst situation one could imagine. I would not want even one single person to find himself in such a horrible place in the spirit world.
My responsibility has been to pass on to you an understanding of truth. Once the student has learned from the teacher, the relationship between them is fulfilled and finished. Beyond the role of teacher, however, lies the role of true parent. A parent can never be finished with his children. God does not want the relationship between you and me to be just a student teacher relationship. God wants you to be able to stay with me forever. Therefore, God gave me the title of True Parent, and that position means we can never be separated. If I were no more than a judge or teacher, perhaps I could send you to hell. However, I cannot do it. As your parent, I would have to go down to hell with you and raise you out of it.
You must realize that God has been suffering throughout history to establish the title and position of True Parent on the earth. The True Parents are the expression of God’s great love for mankind. God’s intention is to save all people, including those who are now in hell. The words “True Parents” are precious, and the bond between mankind and True Parents is one of love. Brother, sister, president-no other title is greater, no other relationship more intimate. Only True Parents can bring the true relationship of love to mankind. Love and forgiveness are God’s way.
Someone sentenced to prison would want above everything else to be comforted and given hope for the future. He would welcome the love of an ordinary, secular person, but think how much more precious and comforting the presence of True Parents would be. They would bring with them the love of God and all the strength of history. You must realize the true meaning and origin of the title True Parents. I never invented this title; I never even sought to gain such a title. No one else has ever been capable of fulfilling this role or even willing to try. But because it was God’s wish, it was also my wish.
Our topic today is “The True Parents and Our Responsibility.” We have discussed the True Parents, so now we must understand our responsibility.
The True Parents’ task of finding and restoring true children is not easy. As each of you begins to follow the True Parents, you are opposed by the entire world-your family, your society, the news media. Yet even under such adverse circumstances, the True Parents must keep calling and trying to restore true children, one by one. Do I gain commercial benefit by doing this? Why do I do it? I must fulfill my role of True Parent. Behind those words lies the real significance of my life. At the core of those words is true love.
No person of sinful lineage is truly worthy of being called a true child of God; even if he came knocking on the door of Heaven hundreds of times, he could not be considered worthy of entering. But in reality, I am coming and knocking on the door of each one of you and reaching out to you. How can I bring you back into your proper position as true children of God? Only by taking on your burdens of sin myself, by claiming your sins as mine before God. Whatever mistakes you make within the Unification Church ultimately come upon my shoulders.
I came to the United States 10 years ago, and I have done nothing bad or wrong here. However, because my followers have made so many mistakes, the blame comes straight to me. The typical worldly standard would be to dismiss people who bring one suffering. However, the True Parent cannot do such a thing. Right now, the U.S. government is pressing a case against me in court. Legally speaking, I did not have to return to the United States and face this trial; it was only for the sake of you American members and your posterity that I am facing this. If I had tried to protect myself, then you would be open to attack. I could not let that happen. I will be your shield. I would rather be torn apart myself than for that to happen to you. I want you to understand that.
The Past and the Present
We cannot abandon the great accomplishments and foundation we have laid. We must build on these victories. Think about human history. This is the first time the term True Parents has ever existed. In order to achieve the level of true parent, how many other levels have to be achieved? You must begin with the level of true servant of servants and true beggar — even true martyr. No one can leap into the position of true parent if he does not go through all the levels beneath.
To get to the top of a staircase you must climb step by step from the lowest level. From the worst, most miserable position of human society, a person must climb up to the level of true parent. The power to climb all the way up is that of sacrificial love; it is the road of the cross. One must overcome such suffering in order to achieve the title of true parent. Each step must be mastered as you move up the path.
When you were introduced to the Principle, you also encountered various new terms: servant of servant, adopted son, and so forth. These words are more than just intellectual concepts. They represent the actual life I have lived and the actual steps I have climbed. Whenever you observe people in miserable situations in life, such as beggars and hungry people, think of the times when I was in their position. I was once a laborer, a dock-worker, and a beggar.
When I was persecuted by the communist regime in North Korea, the police arrested me and tortured me until they thought I was dead. Don’t you realize that I could have felt resentment toward my situation at such times? I could have demanded of God, “Why are You allowing me to suffer like this? Why can’t You do something to protect me, since You are so great and powerful?” This would have been the common reaction. But even though my hands were bruised and bleeding, I clasped them in prayer for those who tortured me. I know that those who beat me were only acting on orders; they could not reject me completely. I longed to embrace them and forgive them. I refused to write them off. You also should not give up when you encounter opposition or difficulties.
When God looks at mankind, whom can He trust? To whom do the saints in the spirit world look for inspiration? Because God gave me the title of True Parent, I must fulfill my responsibility. With a parental heart, I look at each of you, at America, and at the world. The true parental heart is to love and forgive the child. Even if the child is being led to his execution for crimes he committed, the parent will keep trying until the very last minute to get his child’s sentence commuted. This has been my heart ever since coming to the United States. Without such a heart I could not have persevered here; I would have left long ago.
What is the true relationship between you and the True Parents? Is it a real, honest-to-goodness relationship or is it merely on the level of intellect? The concept of True Parents is logical, so perhaps you relate to us only as a concept. But what about your emotions, your heart in your day-to-day life? Do you feel the reality of the True Parents in your daily life?
When I look at you, I know that you are real children of God. As soon as you joined the Unification Church, you walked into eternity. I consider you eternal beings, and I care about your eternal life, not just this moment or next month or next year.
At the least, Unification Church members should feel some closeness and intimacy with the True Parents. Many people cannot have a real feeling about God since He is invisible; but the True Parents are right here, visible and tangible. You can talk with us, weep with us, and work with us. You should feel a heart-to-heart closeness with us.
Most of you had to give up your old lifestyles and former friends; you have even sacrificed your time with your families and relatives. To side with me, you have even had to disregard your nation, since public opinion has been against me. Why have you done all this? Because you know that ultimately you will be able to return to the mainstream of your nation, your society, and your family and restore them to God’s side. Since you understand this, you have determined to disregard such things temporarily. Even though you have had to sacrifice so much, you still love me. You made up your mind that the relationship you most need right now is the one with the True Parents. You have sacrificed the temporal things for the eternal things; once you gain eternal values you can easily claim temporal things.
Up to the present, spirit world has not been organized by families, societies, or nations but from now on, these shall be formed in the spirit world. Who will be the pioneers of the heavenly nation in the spirit world? You and the True Parents. You may think you have lost everything in this world, but you are actually pioneering your greatest inheritance. You have gained eternal relationships based upon the condition of temporarily disregarding your physical and temporal relations.
The Servant of Servants Course
The Washington Monument Rally was the culminating point of all your sacrifices, from the individual, to the family, society, national, and worldwide levels. What was the significance of that rally? Until then there was no heavenly world physically represented on the earth — only the realm of Satan. But at that point, the Unification movement achieved a worldwide level and formed a unity between the physical and spiritual worlds.
The beginning of the new age was declared on February 23, 1978 Year One of the Heavenly Kingdom. A new world and a new nation on Heaven’s side were formed. From then on we could truly wage a substantial battle against Satan’s realm. From that point forward you have been granted the position of judges and lawyers of the Heavenly Kingdom. Each one of you will have a certain position on the heavenly side.
In order to carry out that responsibility, however, you have to know the law. Therefore, you Unification Church members need to receive more heavenly reeducation so you can be truly good judges. You have to be able to receive an order from the True Parents, obey it and put it into practice. That is how you will be qualified to guide the world. There will be no true freedom until you fulfill yourselves by following the laws of Heaven.
I could proclaim my freedom and right to enjoy myself since I have consummated my responsibilities regarding the laws of Heaven, but I did not want to take that route. Even now I am living as a servant, because I desire only the ultimate heavenly freedom. Such a freedom can extend all the way into hell and not be diminished; hell itself can be transformed into Heaven.
I have been talking about myself today. Externally, I have lived as a servant of servants, but my heart has been that of a parent. This is how God has acted throughout history. He has gone forth in the shoes of a servant, but with the heart of a Father. You have True Parents in this physical world, but God Himself is the internal True Parents. Since God has taken the suffering course of the loving parent, the True Parents had to walk the same path. For whom did they do it? Not for themselves, but for the children.
When you grasp the spirit and ideology of the True Parents, you will be truly able to understand and accept them. These are things you should actually feel and experience.
It is pleasant to rise higher and higher in this world and gain greater and greater position, but to climb down is very painful. Nobody wants to do it; virtually nobody does it without complaining. It is only with a parental heart that one can become humble and willingly accept the lowly tasks of a servant.
It is amazing that God, who is the highest being, has come down to the lowest realms of humanity in order to save His children. God doesn’t care about how weak or pale He may appear; He has forgotten all personal matters. For a prominent white leader of society to go into the home of a poor black slum-dweller and clean his kitchen is still nothing compared with the way God has been humbling Himself and serving mankind throughout history.