Heaven Down To Earth - Words of Spiritual Guidance
by Rev. Paul Werner
Chapter 16 - The Reality of Spirit World [Part 4]
You have the unique opportunity to influence many people. With the power of God, you can lift them up and even heal their hearts. You will be strengthened by the compassion that you develop through your love for God and in return be infused with great power. That is the power of the spirit. The real power of God is dynamic and already lives in your heart.
Remember that spiritual beings watch you at all times. You can act the way you want, but you will be reprimanded and suffer if your relationship with heaven is not clear. You are in the process of reaching perfection and Satan tries to do anything to deter you. Don't be foolish. If you create some unprincipled vision or image in your mind, it may bother you for a long time. Even though it could diminish, it may come back again if you become spiritually weak.
When a person becomes a member of the Unification movement, what he remembers from his past might bother him. Even though he may no longer do anything or think of anything relating to it, his memory is continually jogged to remember those times. If this happens to you, cut those strings to Satan and refuse to think about those things anymore. Those memories will only serve to accuse and weaken you. If you gain spiritual power, you will be able to overcome those things.
The spiritual power we need to sustain spiritual life comes by totally dedicating ourselves and becoming completely one with God. A pure heart will develop on the basis of this. And nothing is impossible when you couple a pure heart with spiritual power.
Unchangeability is divine; it means to center on God and disseminate a constant standard of love toward everyone. But so often we waver. There is another force at work pulling us into another direction, sapping us of our energy. We must tap into the source of God's power and fend off the attack of Satan.
Acquire spiritual strength in order to be self-regenerating. If you pour out all your energies in a short time, you will soon be empty. You will then need to be replenished with spiritual power which you can receive by relating everything you do to God and True Parents.
We must be able to release the spiritual power within ourselves. If we can accomplish this, we can then tackle the task of releasing the power which exists within other people. These spiritual energies have been instilled by God; we don't have to worry about creating them. We must just connect with them and bring them out.
We must receive our spiritual power from God because by ourselves we are not strong enough to regenerate. Besides, we are not the source of this love and knowledge God is.
If something new happens every day, we feel uplifted and a kind of spiritual power charges the atmosphere. It does not matter if we get a new toaster or clean the carpet, newness sparks something within us to come alive. Therefore we should make sure that something exciting happens every day. We always need spiritual refreshment; it helps fuel the spiritual power we must use to move forward.
If you are close to God, you will automatically gain the power of His love and receive His authority and then He can more easily work through your intellect and personality. When we refer to authority in a spiritual sense, it indicates that we must become a greater channel for the power of God to work and speak through. Then people who listen to your voice will actually be hearing the resonance of God.
This world is still ruled by Satan. However, it would not take the majority of fifty-one percent of all human beings to belong to God's camp for this balance of power to shift. It requires only a few people. It is like darkness and light. If you take a handful of darkness and hold it into the light, it is impossible to see. But if you light one match in a dark room, you can see everything.
Just a few people will light up the whole world. The spiritual power that derives from a bright spirit can lift up many, many people. Being charged with positive elements is much stronger than any negative or satanic power.
Spiritual phenomena can be perceived when your sensitivity reaches a peak. Yet you must realize that if you desire to have a vision every day or want to heal a thousand people, you must pay the necessary indemnity. Payment is needed for any spiritual manifestation. Many healers are ignorant about the principle of indemnity. They figure that because Jesus was able to do it, they can do the same if they call upon his assistance. They are unable to recognize the incredible payment made by Jesus for such spiritual power to be made available to him.
Your most beautiful spiritual experiences will occur when your heart is filled with love and you meet God in prayer. Yet even though such an encounter is moving and profound, it just scratches the surface of the spirit world. What would it be like to live there? Just thinking about it can surround you in waves of warmth and solace. Consider the highest experience you have ever had in your life. You will eventually remember it as the lowest experience once you live in spirit world.
I remember a vision I had over twenty-two years ago. I climbed a set of stairs and saw a light which continued to get brighter and brighter. At the top I saw a throne bathed in the whitest of white light. I was sure that God was sitting on this throne therefore I kept climbing up and up, becoming more and more overwhelmed. The presence of God became ever greater. White light shone out like the sun, and nearly blinded me. But when I saw the being who occupied the throne, I recognized the face of Father. Those are the sketchy details from what I can remember of the vision. What is carved much more deeply in my heart is the feeling that accompanied it. It almost disintegrated my whole fiber.
Every spirit has a form, and Lucifer's spirit is no exception. I have had several spiritual experiences with him. One time he appeared to me when I was in the prayer room. He was so beautiful and radiant -- not at all conforming to the typical picture of a "devilish" looking character dressed in the red suit with horns and arrow tail. He was just like God and looked magnificent in the robe he wore. His presence was overwhelming. Thinking it was God, I was almost ready to bow. But all of a sudden I saw a black spot on him. I instinctively knew something was wrong and I accused him of being Satan. When I accused him, the vision became smaller and smaller until it finally disappeared behind the altar.
What surprised me most was how beautiful this spiritual being looked; it took my breath away. But when I discovered who it really was, I received further confirmation of how devious Satan is, always pretending to be something he's not.
The physical self is affected by spiritual phenomena. In fact, the whole nervous system feels it. If your spiritual eyes are open and you see a vision, you are taken aback. You can hardly believe the wondrous sight before you. You may see a person bathed in vivid colors and appearing holy and divine. Since your physical eyes are also open, you remember it is daytime and all of a sudden realize that you are actually seeing a vision. You may begin to tremble and shake. The uplifting feeling you experience is a spiritual process accompanied by a very physical reaction.
After we joined the Unification movement many people walking past our house stopped and could go no further. One lady knocked on the door and inquired, "Something won't let me walk past this house. What's going on in here? I feel as though I have to come in. Something spiritual is pulling me in. Who are you people?" We invited her to come in and because she seemed so prepared, we taught her the Principle.
Even a little child can have a great awareness of God and spirit world. When I was four or five years old I had already made a deep relationship with Jesus. I talked to him as if he were standing beside me. And love welled up in my heart whenever I thought of him.
My little brother died when he was four years old; he fell off a pump and hit his head. Almost from the time he started to talk, he mentioned his secret desire to be with the angels in heaven. And his wish came true.
During my pioneer days I used to teach the Principle up to twelve hours a day. I felt surrounded by many spirits; they were so persistent in working with me that they didn't want me to sleep. I yelled to chase them away. The reason they didn't want to leave is that they wanted to benefit from the lectures I was teaching to the new guests. I saw them sitting in golden robes. We had a table big enough for twenty-four people to sit around, but spirits sat around there, too. Just looking at them elevated me. It is marvelous to experience the reality of spirit world.
Many people in this world have spiritual experiences. Most people have a natural sense or intuition, but some also hear voices, see clear visions, experience certain smells, and so forth. But these experiences are clearly not of this world. Yet because people rebuke God and the reality of spirit world, they insist those things never happened to them, or felt that they were just imagining things. They would not dream of talking about them with others, afraid of being ridiculed. Because the world generally regards spiritual experiences with suspicious eyes, people lose their ability to be open to spiritual manifestation and only want to live in the physical world.
Life in Spirit World
Experiencing spirit world is similar to experiencing marriage. Before you live a married life, you know about marriage only through what your family and friends tell you, but have never experienced it personally. After you consummate your marriage, you will be exposed to a totally different realm of life.
It will be the same when you go to the spirit world. Now you can know about spirit world only through the experiences you have and what others tell you about their own spiritual experiences. You can read books on the subject and realize they too give only part of the picture. Nevertheless, until you finally reach that land, you will never fully understand what life there will really be like. You must simply believe that you will live there.
If love is absent from your realm in spirit world, you live in hell. You can breathe only love in spirit world; without it, you will suffocate.
At one time each spiritual being, except for the angels, had a physical body, and therefore they can understand the limitations and frustrations you may feel being encumbered by it. Spirits went into the spirit world with their concepts -- whether they were a Catholic, Baptist, an atheist, and so forth -- and they formed groups according to their own backgrounds. Actually there is no difference between having a body and not having a body: spirit world is spirit world. At this moment both you and I are in the spirit world. This is spirit world just as much as it is the physical world. Thousands of spirits are listening in and trying to digest what I or any other person says. Many consider and accept certain things although others may take more time before they become convinced. Yet they generally come back day after day to continue learning.
Many thousands of spirits have already accepted Father as the Messiah. Because of this, they changed their vibrations and spiritual colors as they grew through an increase in knowledge. When I speak, I become a missionary in spirit world, not just here; I also proclaim a new truth to all of spirit world.
Live with the awareness that there is no necessity and no reason to separate that spirit world from this spirit world.
Make sure that before you go to spirit world, you leave a legacy. It would be terrible to leave the earth and have nothing to look upon which you can call your own creation -- love that you have invested in people, things that you have built up for God and humanity. You will be spiritually impoverished if you have nothing on which you can look back and nothing to which you can return. If you haven't built a family or at least made friends, you will have a hard time to relate to the physical world once you live in spirit world.
Life in spirit world is beautiful. If you knew what spirit world was like, you would be "dying" to go there now. Many people would like to die for just a few minutes to see what it's like. However, they stipulate that they will go only if they can come back to the physical world again. Unfortunately, it does not work that way. Of course some people have had near-death experiences and hence, were permitted a glimpse of certain realms of spirit world -- high and low. And although they did not live in spirit world and have come back to this world, most of them experienced a sensation in the tunnel of colors, and saw the "pearly gates." Many have testified that they no longer felt any physical pain, but from the corner of the operating room or the scene of the accident actually saw their physical bodies laying there. They even heard doctors or relatives pronounce them dead. Even though they felt tremendous physical pain when their spirits reentered their physical bodies, the entire escapade made them lose their fear of death. After this experience, they viewed physical life in a much different way and many remarked that they didn't want to lose any time. They wanted to live each day to the fullest because they knew the glories or horrors that awaited them. They either couldn't wait to return to spirit world or were glad they had extra time to undo some of their mistakes. Most also commented that from that experience they realize how important it is to love people.
When we go into spirit world, we will feel ashamed that we had so little faith. When we will be escorted to the realm we belong, we may be deeply ashamed, realizing that we don't deserve such grace from God. We will see our shortcomings more clearly and then realize how much we compromised God's principles. It will become obvious that we could have done much more and we will truly feel humbled by the benefit we never knew awaited us in spirit world.
Each one of us has a position in heaven, and although we may not be aware of it, we ourselves create that place by the way we live our lives here on earth. As we continue to grow spiritually, we secure a place in an even higher realm of spirit world. At the moment of physical death, spiritual beings will come and lead us to our home there. Nobody can cheat himself into a higher realm; he would not be able to stay there because the spiritual air would be too thin for him to breathe.
Even today you make a decision about the realm you will live in. It is based on the amount of love you have for God, True Parents, and humanity. Realize how much or how little responsibility you are taking. Tabulate the number of people you are bringing to God. Discern how much you love and care for your spiritual children. How judgmental are you of your brothers and sisters, and of people persecuting you? Do you have compassion for them and try to lead them to God? We alone decide whether or not we will change our realm through the efforts we make for God and His will. We decide whether we go to a higher or lower realm. It is based on our attitude, our faith, our love, our determination, and our desire to live for God rather than ourselves.
The impact you make -- whether positive or negative -- creates big waves. Throwing a rock into the water will produce swells and ripples. If you give out love, waves of love flow. So it is in the spirit world.
The person who believes there is no spirit world lives a different life from the person who looks forward to living there. If we do not seek God, we may feel some satisfaction in living on a big income, building a nice marriage, having children, accumulating a great deal of wealth and material goods, and so on. But if we make these things our focus, we are misled. We will eventually be filled with remorse if we do not consider that there is another life after this one. The inter-human relationships we form on the earth now must be restored in order that they can also thrive in the spirit world. A person who has no descendents will naturally feel very lonesome in spirit world. It is important that all generations connect and feel responsible to their former generations. Each generation should feel responsible to extend its lineage. If every generation lives accordingly, all generations will be connected to each other. Interdependency will be the natural result and all members of that lineage will experience happiness in the spirit world.
If you have built solid and lasting friendships on earth, you will automatically have friends in the spirit world. But if you are a loner in this life, you will also be a loner in the next. If many people love you in this world, you will be a rich person in the spirit world. But in order to have many friends, you must be loved by many people. Therefore, it is a wise move to love many people now in order that they will love you back. Once you establish loving relationships, you will have friends who treasure you forever, just as you will cherish them.
You can create a unique environment in the spirit world. You can relate to thousands and millions of people from all different cultures. Secure yourself a future that is interesting. God designed humanity in such a fashion that everyone is interrelated and interdependent. Everyone has been given the commission to satisfy the hearts of others rather than his own. That is one purpose of life. You are born to satisfy your spouse and vice versa. But you have the obligation to affect many other people because that is the will of God.
If you are successful in establishing this network of communication here on earth when you will meet your companions in the spirit world your friendships will still exist. But if you are concerned only for yourself or your family here on earth, you will act virtually the same in the spirit world. The only problem is that you will be forced to live the same hellish existence there you designed here.
if you are so stubborn that you cannot accept anyone else's opinion, in spirit world you will sit in a corner because you still won't accept anybody or anything. But the bad news is that you will sit in hell all by yourself. Furthermore, it is rumored that the worst thing about hell is being forced to look at yourself all the time, and constantly be reminded of your shortcomings and mistakes.
Looking at a patch of blooming flowers is simultaneously a physical and a spiritual experience. For that reason, the result stays with us and is stored in our memories. The only baggage we will be allowed to bring with us to spirit world is our memory garden. We will remember the experiences we had in tasting all sorts of food. Although once we live in spirit world it will no longer be necessary to eat, we can eat anything we desire. Our spirits are continuously absorbing experiences from the physical world, and these will be carried with us when we depart for spirit world.
If we all meet in spirit world and remember the special time we had today, we will be able to project ourselves right into this moment since it is recorded within each of us. All we have to do is locate this particular slide. We will all be able to take out the slide show of this afternoon. I can imagine that we would say to each other, "Boy, we understood so little then. We should have done this or that. What a bunch of ignorant people we were then. Why didn't we do that? Why did we allow ourselves to succumb to fatigue so many times?"
Father recently told the leaders that in spirit world we would replay that day's meeting and see how unaware we were at the time. I am saying the same about our situation today; we will all recognize that we could have done much more with this opportunity called life, because we have the privilege of living at this time and are called the sons and daughters of God and True Parents. All these gifts are ours but we are still so ignorant of their significance. We are still so ungrateful and unaware. We allow ourselves to be governed by a certain set of laws which are much more insignificant than the laws which rule the spirit world. We center on such menial things -- cleaning the house, what we should wear, how we look. We view other people and become upset by what they do or don't do. These are valid realities but should be put in proper perspective and not become our focus. These are the things that hamper us from living with God. We map out our future eternal lives by what we do each day. Just the thought of this should make us wake up and get ready for our lives in spirit world.
You will still be talking about me long after my death because my spirit will still be around. After Jesus died and went into spirit world, hundreds of millions of people still glorified him and spread wonderful words about the kind of man he was. In the spirit of Christ, even now people meet together. When Father goes to the spirit world, hundreds of millions of people will also glorify him and sing love songs to True Parents. Life in the spirit world will be so rich and meaningful. Unfortunately, we so often forget this "good news."
In spirit world we will eventually know the significance of all the sacrifices in history. Everything will become clear. At that time many people will be ashamed of their misbehavior, seeing that many others did much more for much less blessing, while they received tremendous grace for doing almost nothing. Even though they will be deeply repentant, this may become an accusation.
The saints and angels will accuse us if we do not do enough. We know so much and yet do so little. They may confront us, "We did so much we even died for the cause -- yet look at how you live. You live in such abundance and you even received the Blessing."
The word "rapture" means to be taken out of one world and placed into another. It means staying in this world, yet not being of this world. Once we are raptured, we are in an altogether different spiritual realm. This is absolutely sealed through the Blessing. We are protected by our connection to God through True Parents. As we are raptured, we don a cloak of divinity -- a robe of the new gospel, and the new power of God. We should sew this cloak around ourselves with the threads of our prayers and our love for God, True Parents, and humanity. When we are successful, nothing can penetrate us, not even the arrows of Satan. If we pray without ceasing, nothing will bother us. Our spiritual power will simply melt away evil.
The physical world is merely the reflection of something of much higher and everlasting value. Music pervades the spirit world. The flowers and pastures sing. There is musical vibration in the waters and the mountains. Even colors vibrate certain sounds. The physical world is so debased that it may be hard to imagine a place like spirit world does exist, but according to what Father has told us about it, once we arrive we will be pleasantly surprised and overwhelmed by God's creativity.
The Reality of Spirit World
Whether you realize it or not ' you are always in spirit world. The world you live in is actually much broader than what you are able to see, hear, taste, smell, or touch with your physical senses. Spiritual beings are always around you, but they should not be feared. They are people just like you; the only difference is they no longer have their physical bodies.
Yet since they went to spirit world, they have learned so many things about the reality of that world. They know that the amount of love you express decides where you will live in spirit world. They know the truth; they know that God is alive. They know that there are many levels in spirit world and that the strength of your faith determines where you will go.
Therefore, any of you who break through to spirit world and let your presence be known will attract many spirits who are happy and cooperative. The more you do that, the more they will surround you. If you develop a strong prayer life and have a prayerful attitude at all times, they will be with you constantly.
We have to be very serious in how we behave toward spirit world and realize that a spirit world does exist -- not just on paper or as an intellectual concept. Although we may start with an intellectual realization, we can build our relationship to God through developing spiritual sensitivity. Just as we usually cannot see spirits, neither can we see God, but we can feel His presence.
Christianity can offer only spiritual salvation; but Father is committed to offer much more. Through God's guidance, True Parents enlist the help of all who heed the call to build the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. True Parents have taught us so much more about God and the spirit world than the majority of Christians have been able to learn. Unificationists know that just as an embryo is destined to become a human being, all people are destined to advance to new life as a spiritual being. Many people -- Christians, Jews, Moslems, Hindus, Buddhists, and believers of numerous other faiths -- throughout the world want to believe this, but have never been completely assured of it. One difference between Unificationism and other religions is that True Parents have confirmed the reality of the spirit world.
The intellect is a tool which can convey a vision from one heart to another. Of course that also takes place through language, gestures, eye contact, and so forth. But despite which method is used, there is always a give and take process that occurs in spirit world to convey that vision. If you would close your eyes, shut off your physical senses and just listen to my voice, I could communicate to you spiritually.
We live in spirit world right here on earth, and therefore we must become more spiritual and work on strengthening our vertical connection. This entails revising our way of living, thinking, and acting. The spiritual essence within us must be revealed in our daily activities.
The laws and structures of this world are important for its survival and continued existence. But it is everlasting values that are found in spirit world. Music that was composed hundreds of years ago still has the highest value today. Paintings by Michelangelo, Peter Paul Rubens, Rembrandt, and others as well as literary classics, and the pieces composed by musical geniuses, maintain the timeless quality of their original worth. I feel the reason behind this is that they have been projected into the spirit world and can be used for hundreds of thousands of years.
If we are unaware of the reality of spirit world, will we be open enough to allow spirits to cooperate with us? How much can spiritual beings cooperate with people who are uninformed about the Principle? Many people are under the impression that to think about life after death is delving into occultism. Satan has influenced people not to believe in the spirit world and unfortunately far too many people are intimidated by his laugh of ridicule, and do shut off their natural curiosity about it.
Yet human beings were originally to be like television sets or radio receivers, open to the workings of God. Once we come closer to God, we will develop and restore those senses and will be able to connect with heaven again. That is precisely what the spirit world is waiting for. They want to communicate with us. Yet if we refuse to recognize the existence of the spirit world, how can we activate spiritual beings?
No matter how much people want to deny the spirit world, something in their original mind is pricked whenever it is mentioned. All people, even those who disbelieve, are drawn to talk about spirit world because it is the world of our future -- it is our home, and it is where our God resides.
If you believe that what you pray for will come true, the spirit world will assist you in accomplishing it. Spiritual beings also have personalities; you cannot fool around with them. How can you talk to them but at the same time not even believe in what you are saying? How would you react to me if I spoke about fantastic plans for the future if I didn't believe that they will come to pass? You can believe what I say because you know I believe it myself. The same thing is true in our relationship to spiritual beings.
When humanity concentrated on developing the technology of this world, they discovered many answers and accomplished amazing results.
Mankind has done so much research in biology, chemistry, computer technology, and so forth but has almost completely neglected researching the spiritual world. Only Russia invests money into research of the spirit world. This is so because communists actually fear God, they want to know what the enemy looks like. And through the evidence they have gathered, they now know for sure there is such an enemy to fear!
You will be able to explore the spirit world through a strong prayer life. The more you break through, the greater your feelings and imagination will develop, and the questions you have about life in spirit world will be answered.
At this time the physical and spiritual worlds are very intermingled and there is a great deal of interaction. Unless we have spiritual experiences, we cannot perceive the totality of what is transpiring around us. If spirit world becomes a reality to us, however, we will accomplish great things with their assistance. We will also discard our fear of dying, our fear of the spirit world, or any mystical experience.
Some Christian denominations view spiritual phenomena as a cult experience and out of ignorance, reject them. There is a built-in fear which urges a number of Christians not to touch it. Throughout history, people who investigated spirit world were considered cultists. Copernicus and Galileo claimed the earth was not flat and that it revolves around the sun. Society punished them because their ideas did not conform to the Catholic concept of that time. But eventually everyone understood that the earth is round, and that it indeed does revolve around the sun. Likewise, people persecute Unificationists because what we have to say does not comply with the concept held by existing churches at this time. Ignorance is a terrible problem.
It is important to deepen your awareness that God and spirit beings are real. They have emotions and feelings just as you do, therefore when you pray or talk to them, you shouldn't talk into nothingness. Nor should you feel you have to quake as you talk to the mighty Universal Prime Force. Do not just talk into a vision of God as a big cloud of love; address God as a person. After all, He is your Heavenly Father.
Approach your place of prayer with the assurance that it is crowded with spirits. The Principle expresses that they are dependent upon us, yet how much do we consciously permit them to work with us for their resurrection?
We will find greater things in the spirit world than we can ever discover on earth. The true essence of anything that was part of our education, such as literature or art, will also be found in spirit world. What we have on earth is just a reflection of the real thing. The colors in the spirit world are the pure, true colors -- so vivid and beautiful, they would take our breath away if we were to see them now. In the spirit world, we will not just see those colors -- we will feel, taste, and hear them. And they will touch us. Any tunes we might hear there will permeate our skin and bones and eventually vibrate through us. In spirit world, all things will appear as God originally created them to be, even human beings. Ultimately, all mankind will be the perfected beings God desires we become.
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