Truth Is My Sword Volume I -Collected Speeches in the Public Arena
by Bo Hi Pak
Testimony of Dr. Bo Hi Pak
August 21, 1986
The following testimony was given by Dr. Pak at a ministers' seminar held in Seoul, Korea, on August 21, 1986. Between 1985 and 1988, more than 7,000 clergymen from the United States visited Korea to study Unificationism and visit the historical sites of the Unification Church under the auspices of the Interdenominational Conferences for Clergy.
Good morning, Buenos Bias, ahnyong hashimnika. By now, you must be very good in Korean as well. Thank you. Indeed, it is my great honor to come before you on this culminating day of your tour of Korea, to have this most splendid opportunity to speak to you. Reverend Kwak, Reverend Lee, and Reverend Hillendale, the chairman of this wonderful group, and my dear brothers and sisters, welcome to Korea, from the bottom of my heart.
I am sure you have gone through tremendous physical and spiritual exercises. It is so exhilarating, in one sense, and so tiring, in another. So I'm afraid that you might be very tired at this point. You are not? You don't look tired. God must be good to you. Amen!
Did you see the movie "Cocoon," that famous American movie? There was a special energizing swimming pool in that movie. All the old folks who jumped into that pool received special new energy through some kind of natural process; they became rejuvenated. Sixty-year-olds became like thirty-year-olds, as far as their stamina and mental and physical capacity. I tell you, Korea is like that "Cocoon" swimming pool, spiritually. When you come to this country, there is some energizing spiritual factor. Therefore, when you say you are not tired but are full of energy, I believe you. This country will give you spiritual as well as physical energy. All in all, I'm so glad to see you in Korea.
May I ask how many of you have attended CAUSA seminars in the past? Can I see your hands? Great numbers. Thank you very much. Since I am the organizer and leader of the CAUSA seminars in the United States, I would like to see all of you come to the CAUSA program in the future. Then you will benefit greatly.
At this time, you have been exposed to very special material, Unificationism, or the Divine Principle, as we call it. Truly it is a greater, deeper, and more profound spiritual and theological exercise than any other. This morning I am not going to spend any time beating around the bush. I just want to share my testimony, my life in the Unification Church, and try to deepen your impression about the Unification Church and our movement. I hope God is helping to enlighten you at this hour so that I can do a proper job for this most distinguished audience.
I'm sorry that I could not be with you when you visited the Little Angels School. Did you like the Little Angels? Since I received the inspiration and vision from Reverend Moon and have been an architect of that particular institution, I would like to first share a word of testimony about that school. I don't know how much explanation you have received, but the Little Angels are a product of the vision of Reverend Moon. Actually, in 1962, Reverend Moon called me and gave me what seemed to be a "Mission Impossible" to create a children's folk ballet group and take them on a tour of the world. I felt at that time it was a really giant order. But being trained in the military, I do not know how to say no. But I still asked, "Why children, Reverend Moon? I can understand a folk ballet, which is the best form of representation of a culture to other countries. But what about an adult group?" It was like a nightmare, thinking of taking 30 or more children around the world. You know, I have six kids of my own and that is already beyond me!
Reverend Moon answered me with firm conviction. He said, "Children are the symbol of peace. They communicate in a universal language, which all human beings can understand. All people around the world love children beyond race, nationality, language, and culture." Then he quoted the Bible, saying, "In the words of Isaiah, `And a child shall lead them.'"
It has been 21 years since the Little Angles undertook their first international tour in 1965. We went to the United States. The first performance was given in honor of the retired President, Dwight D. Eisenhower. He was in Gettysburg and we performed for him there. He was beaming ear to ear and he said to the children, and I cannot forget it, "Well, the heavenly angels will have a hard time because of these little Korean angels."
Since then, the Little Angels have performed in more than 70 countries around the world, giving more than 3,000 live performances and more than 300 television appearances. In 1971, they were invited to a Royal Command Performance in the presence of Her Majesty, the Queen of England. The delighted queen invited the Little Angels to a royal reception afterwards, which was unprecedented in British protocol. They have performed for the heads of state in more than 30 different countries. They were invited to the White House to perform for two Presidents. They performed in the United Nations General Assembly hall, for the benefit of the U.N. Children's Fund.
In summarizing the Little Angels' cultural mission, Mr. Joynton Smith, the prominent Australian impresario who sponsored the Little Angels' tour of that country in 1972, wrote a letter to Reverend Moon, founder of the Little Angels. He said, "I can think of no better way of trying to promote peace and good will amongst all nations than to have the Little Angels taking their message to the four corners of our globe." That is really summarizing the mission of the Little Angels-ambassadors of peace and good will to all nations. They have been doing that very well.
Then Reverend Moon expanded the Little Angels program into an educational system, which school you saw a couple of days ago. Within that compound, there are three schools and approximately 3,600 students. I'm sorry that this is summer vacation, so you may not have seen the students. Those students who served as your guides were specially summoned to do that job and they were happy to do that. They even practiced English conversation. I'm sure that sometimes they looked at their notes in order to make conversation with you. They are in elementary school, middle school, and high school, all providing a complete, well-rounded education in all academic subjects, with emphasis on music, dance, and the fine arts.
Philosophy of Education
Reverend Moon gave the founding inspiration-this is very important for the testimony of Reverend Moon-for the school's philosophy of education. In other words, the school is the embodiment of Reverend Moon's philosophy of education. Reverend Moon believes that man's inner moral character determines the quality of his art and that inner character must be based on love and the spirit of unselfish service. For this reason, he gave the school the "Three Love Principle": love God, love mankind, and love your country. In that order. Love of God comes first, then the love of mankind comes second, then the love of country comes third. Reverend Moon said, if you love God and truly love humanity, you have already loved your country.
He teaches that out of this principle, the day-to-day school life credo emerges. The first moral principle is absolute honesty. This is really from the Unification belief. I'm sure you have heard that the Divine Principle describes how the fall of man came about, through an illicit relationship between man and the archangel. But that illicit, immoral relationship began with a lie. The serpent whispered lies in the ear of the woman, Eve. In other words, the problem of the entire human history started with a lie. Furthermore, men and women lost faith in the truth, which is the word of God and they united with the lie instead of the truth. That was the beginning point of what went wrong with human history. That was the beginning point of the fall and the degradation of mankind. Therefore, Reverend Moon teaches that the most important thing to teach in the schools is to be absolutely honest.
Second, absolute purity. God gave man purity and we are to preserve it. Lead a pure life. Third is kindness. Kindness with a smile. A smile and greeting. So our school emphasizes smiles, greeting. That is the beginning point of kindness.
Finally, absolute service. The entire embodiment of Reverend Moon's way of life is to live for the sake of others. So service to others, for the needy, the unfortunate. By doing so, we will be rewarded with profound joy.
These are the four basic moral principles our school teaches our children. The university will teach in that fashion, as well, later on. So in the study of art-whether it be music, dance or the fine arts-the students recognize that the world is their stage and they are determined to offer their artistic talents to serve the world in the spirit of love. That was our school.
Now, many people might think, "Are these children all members of the Unification Church?" No. I want you to know that the school is a service to the country and to the world. Less than one percent of the school enrollment are members of the Unification Church. Ninety-nine percent come from the general public. We don't ask the children to change their religion. There are many students from Buddhist families, many Protestants, Catholics. But we uphold these principles: love God, love humanity, love your country. Absolute honesty, purity, kindness, service. That is the common teaching, but beyond that, we do not ask them to worship in a certain way. That is absolutely their freedom.
In order to come to our school, however, the school has become so famous that now only one person out of every seven who apply is admitted. It's a narrow gate. The reason is the quality of the education has been recognized by the entire country. Students come from Pusan, Masan, and all over the country. In order to come to this school, they prepare for five, six, seven years. Many parents throughout the country, especially the wealthy families, buy houses near the school. Now, because of the school, the real estate market has been uplifted in those areas. Men like me could not live around that school!
It is self-evident that Reverend Moon's spirit of service to the country, to the world, is embodied in this school. Furthermore, at the school there is a gate and on the inside there is a sign which reads "The gateway to the world" in English, Korean, and Japanese. So when the children come in and go out of the school, they see this sign. They think, "I'm not just going home now. I'm taking off for the sake of the world. The world is our stage." That vision can be given to students automatically, so that they try to aim high and achieve excellence in their different areas. And their purpose is to serve the world.
I want you to know that, in contrast with some of the American schools, which are beset with many problems such as drugs and promiscuity, our school has absolutely none of these. Not one iota. No drugs whatsoever; no crime problems or any other.
We are in the process of working to build the Sun Myung Moon University here in Korea, with the same spirit, the same three love principles. And eventually, Reverend Moon's goal is to build at least 72 universities around the world. Reverend Moon's mind is always thinking of bringing the reformation, or revolution. We need a revolution in the educational system in this country, in Japan, in the United States. The problem today is the educational system. Our educational system is basically making the human being into a "good tool," like a computer machine, but not a God-centered human character.
Today, the Western educational system is basically 95 to 99 percent just technical, transferring information. But that is not what human beings need. We have to build character within. What kind of character? God-centered character. Reverend Moon emphasizes, therefore, that 70 percent of the education must be character-building. Thirty percent is professional or technical. You've got to be a human being first-a decent, God-centered, God-loving human being before you become a computer technician, or a musician, or whatever.
Reverend Moon is not just interested in running one high school, a junior high school, or the Little Angels company. That is not the interest of Reverend Moon. This is an experiment. He is testing our Principle in action. Then we can make a wholesome program. We want to expand it throughout the world to the university level. This is the idea of Reverend Moon. So the school you saw is just a model, an experiment. So far, I am very, very happy to report to you that that experiment is working. In the same way, Reverend Moon is interested in the artistic community.
The Role of Art
Today the artistic community of the world is become more and more secular, to some extent perverted. Perverted art is prevailing. The doorstep of every American home is beset with all kinds of ungodly, perverted material. Reverend Moon feels deeply about the role of art in human character-building; therefore, he emphasizes bringing a tremendous effort in the artistic community, performing arts and the other forms. So he created a company like the Little Angels as an experiment, a truly God-centered performing company. Those little girls, before they perform, always get together on the stage and pray. They pray. They want to dedicate their art and talent to God first and they ask God's help to manifest His spirit. That's the way they are trained. This same standard is practiced in the Universal Ballet Company, the adult ballet company, which includes many Westerners. This ballet company you have not seen this time, but the last group of ministers saw them perform in the Little Angels auditorium.
But again, in the same spirit as the Little Angels, they are truly performing for the glory of God. This is the motto, the credo: the glory of God. They will selflessly give themselves for the benefit of others. And these adult ballerinas and ballet dancers get on the stage and pray before they perform. You have never heard of any ballet company that prays on the stage before their performance. We sometimes invite famous Western ballerinas and ballet dancers from the New York City Ballet, the American Ballet Theatre, the Royal Ballet of London. And the first night of performance, we invited the guest artist to come on the stage and join hands while someone in the group said a word of prayer! And this artist, coming from an international stage, was absolutely flabbergasted. It was completely mind-boggling to him. But because of the atmosphere, he had to join. But I want you to know that by the end of that particular engagement, that internationally famed artist volunteered to give the prayer. He said, "I have never prayed before in my life. Needless to say, I have never prayed in public. This is the very first prayer of my life."
So again Reverend Moon is interested in bringing revolution, or transformation, or reformation-whichever word you would like to use in the artistic community. We also now have the New York City Symphony Orchestra and other forms of music, even rock music. Reverend Moon doesn't reject rock music. He is trying to use that form of music for young people for the glory of God. This is how Reverend Moon is thinking and he is winning a remarkable success. At this time, we are organizing Artists Association International, trying to bring all artists of the different forms together every year. We are trying to bring this spirit, and refine, cleanse, rededicate the artistic community for the purpose of God and His glory.
But in every aspect of these endeavors, Reverend Moon does not push his theology. He only pushes the basic, common principles, so that every people of every persuasion, every different denomination and religion, can mingle freely, naturally, without any hesitation.
The remainder of the time, I would like to spend talking about Reverend Moon. You know, I have been one of many good interpreters who do the work of interpreting Reverend Moon's sermons and conferences. I'm just one of many interpreters. You may have the impression that Dr. Pak is the only one to translate for Reverend Moon, but that is not so. But I indeed have had the very special privilege of translating many of Reverend Moon's sermons and teaching instructions into English.
My life has been specially molded, it seems to me, for this task. As you may or may not know, I do not come from a religious background. I did not attend any theological school; I did not have any religious training. On June 25, 1950, when the Korean War broke out, I was about 20 miles from here, on the outskirts of Seoul. I was a cadet in the Korean Military Academy, ready to be trained for four years for an engineering degree, as well as commissioning as a second lieutenant. I was so happy to be a cadet because I did not have the opportunity to go to college. So that was my college education, as well. I could be a second lieutenant, and I hoped someday to become a general. That was the kind of young man I was, unmarried, only 20 years old. Very ambitious and pure, in a way. Bubbling with enthusiasm.
Then what happened? Twenty-five days after my entrance in that military academy, the Korean War broke out. On the first day of the war, I entered the action for the cadet corps, without rank or serial number. Every soldier in combat has dog tags, but we didn't because we didn't even have serial numbers. But the war came all of a sudden. The Korean Army was already committed because we were positioned in the North. The cadet corps was on the frontline. It was sort of a blunder. However, we obeyed. Of course, I barely knew how to fire an M-1 rifle. I never heard an artillery shell. I never even saw a machine gun. I never imagined all the incredible weapons and explosives available in those days. But we were all of a sudden put in the foxhole, that afternoon, and fighting the enemy.
We were there to defend the country. We knew one thing-to defend the country. We cannot give up our country to communism. We had to face this overwhelming avalanche attack from the North. In the first three days, so many our school cadet corps, my classmates, died that we were reduced by two-thirds. Three hundred and thirty were reduced to 100 in just three days. That was the beginning of my career in the military.
Then we retreated toward the south, because the enemy forces were absolutely overwhelming. They took Seoul. About fifty miles south, across the Han River, there was a place called Soo Wan. We assembled there. That night, the Korean Army headquarters asked for volunteers to go to the city of Seoul, armed with Molotov cocktails, to try to destroy the Soviet tanks. You know, the 100 remaining cadet corps volunteered. Everybody.
Then we were taken to the army headquarters. There was a general there, the chief of staff of the Korean army, who came out and greeted us, giving us a final greeting. We were given one glass of wine, two packages of dried rations, which would last you probably two or three days. That's all you need to live. They don't ask you to live any more than two or three days. So we are having that farewell banquet, like a final dinner. But then the general came to our youngsters group and saw that everyone was so young. We were all 20 years old and wearing the helmet of the Military Academy. And he stopped. "Who are you?" he asked one cadet. "Sir, the KMA Corps, the Korean Military Academy Corps." He looked at him and said, "No, I cannot allow you to go this time. This war will not be over in the next three days. We need the leadership. We need officers. I would rather send you down to Pusan to be trained for eight weeks and then come back as second lieutenants. We need you to become officers." That command saved my life. Of the several hundred volunteers who entered Seoul City that night with Molotov cocktails, not one single person survived.
You know, I cannot share with you this entire life of mine in this limited time, but it started out this way. Something, some power, seemed to be guiding my life, saving my life for some very important purpose. Later, I returned to battle as a second lieutenant. Again, many of my classmates died. But miraculously one thing after another happened to me that preserved my life. I faced many narrow escapes of death. I didn't have religion at that time. My mother was sort of a Buddhist. My father was a Confucian scholar, from a very noble family. We have a general concept of God, which is very strong in Korean people, but not in the name of Jesus Christ. So I was not really a worshipping person.
At one point, my company was completely surrounded by the Red Chinese Army next to a river. They were shooting our company down into the river. I was on this side of the bank, on the ground, commanding the company to cross the river to the south. All of a sudden, a shower of gunfire came from the mountain. In a few seconds, the whole river was turned into crimson red.
I found myself shouting. You know what I said? "God. Hananim, save my life." In other words, I didn't call upon my mother. I didn't call upon my father. I didn't call upon Confucius or Buddha. But I called God. Even in that very second I felt that I was not worthy to be saved, because I was not even professing to have faith in God. But then the next moment, I said, "God, if you save my life this time, I will become your good disciple."
At that moment the American airplanes appeared and bombarded the enemy position. Only three men in my company were saved. And among those three, I was the only one without a scratch. The other two were terribly wounded. So that taught me to become humble. I became a very, very humble man at that point. I said to God, "Because I promised You, I want to deliver." I was seeking some kind of meaning to life and death, some kind of comfort, seeking some kind of principle. I went to Buddhist monks and other elderly teachers. Finally, I knocked on a church door that happened to be the Church of Christ. I began to read the Bible, without even knowing the meaning of it. Then in 1951, I went to the United States for the first time, as a military officer, to be trained at Fort Benning, Georgia.
I Was Saved by God
The president of Korea, Syngman Rhee, came out to Inchon Harbor and shook the hands of 150 officers, saying, "You go study hard. Come back and win this war." He was crying-our president was crying. From that scene, we left.
At that time, we landed in San Francisco and traveled by train to Georgia. We went through Colorado and the Rocky Mountains, as well as the desert and on down to the south. I saw all this after coming out of the ravages of war. The city of Seoul at that time was absolutely flattened. Then I saw America for the first time in my life. I tell you, the impression that struck me was that that was Heaven on earth. Incredible. The beauty, happiness, wealth, well-being; mountains and rivers. When the American soldiers who were traveling with us first saw the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, they were rejoicing, throwing their hats in the air. They were returning to their home country. On the pier there were a hundred thousand people, families, embracing and jumping up and down. My eyes were misty. It must be God. It must be God giving blessing to America. I have really become a great lover, admirer of America, simply because I have witnessed so many beautiful things here that could only happen because of the love of God.
At that time, I did not speak even one word of English. Instructions to our group of 150 officers were given via interpreters. I was prepared to go back to Korea to fight the battle and to participate in more war. If I had not gone to the United States at that time, I would have been killed. I would not be standing before you today. The reason is this: as soon as we arrived at Fort Benning, Georgia, the battle of White Horse Mountain broke out. The division that engaged in that battle was the Ninth Division of the Republic of Korea, which was my division. I was the Ninth ROK Division, 28th Regiment. That was such a savage battle between the Red Chinese and the Korea army that virtually the entire 28th Regiment was demolished. So I heard about that in America and thought, "I was in America; otherwise, I would have been on that mountain." But I was fully prepared to go back to fight. I never expected that I would return to the United States in my entire life. How could I? I was in the war. I did not speak even one word of English. How could a man like me, even if I did survive, come to America again?
I was single, unmarried, adventurous. I said to myself, "I want to see the real America. At least, I want to see the famous Washington, D.C., and New York City." For the Korean people, that is America: Washington and the Empire State Building. But I had no money and no vacation, except for three days at the Fourth of July. Three days were the longest vacation time I could have. Five brave, combat-seasoned Korean officers went out to Columbus, Georgia, in plain clothes and took a taxi. Three of us packed into the back seat, two in the front seat. Then the driver said, "Where to?" I said, "Washington, D.C." The driver said, "What did you say?" I said, "Washington, D.C." And, of course, my pronunciation was not so good so I pulled out my map and showed him, "Here, Washington." The driver started shouting and jumping up and down; there was incredible turmoil. We five officers were sitting there like a rock-immovable. Can you believe it?
The driver began to drive! It took 16 hours to get to Washington. After 10 hours, the driver got so tired and he began to doze. So we felt some danger, so we bought big gallons of coffee and packages of cigarettes. And we were constantly feeding him these things. At that time, I felt the American highway was a little bit more dangerous than the Korean war zone.
When we arrived in Washington, we went to the Congress. I was so inspired by the meaning of God. I wanted to find out more about that. One simple place we visited was the Congressmen's prayer room. It's a dark little room in the Capitol building. There's a picture of George Washington kneeling down at Valley Forge. We went into that little hall. Of course, I didn't know how to pray but I was totally inspired, nevertheless. I thought, "This is America. America, God. Look at George Washington, asking for Divine guidance."
Then we drove to New York. We went up to the top of the Empire State Building and took a picture. I said to myself, "Now I can go back to Korea and be ready to die." Of course, I also took one picture in front of the Washington Monument. You know, at that time, it was my farewell to America because I believed I would never come back. But can you imagine, by the mysterious power of God... You know, Dr. Joseph Lowery always says in his great speech, "God works in mysterious ways." It's absolutely true. In a mysterious way, God put this man on the platform of the Washington Monument in 1976 to translate probably one of the greatest speeches in human history, the speech Reverend Moon gave at the God Bless America festival. Amazing.
Persecution by Congressman Fraser
Then in 1978, I was sitting in a room in the Congress building, that august hall, and speaking on behalf of my church, my country, my people to that most arrogant Congressman Donald M. Fraser, in a Congressional hearing. You know, it is just mind-boggling to think that in 1952, I was standing inside the Congress building, thinking, this is my last farewell to America. But then God brought me back. By then I was speaking English. Otherwise I could not translate. When I went back to Korea, I began to study English at the age of 28. Impossible to learn at that age but I was determined.
By 1952 I had become a Christian. I was baptized in Columbus, Georgia. It happened that the missionary leading me was from the Church of Christ, so I joined that church. For the next five years, I went to church regularly and faithfully because I made a promise to God on the battlefield that I wanted to keep. I was trying to be a good Christian, but let me honestly confess to you that the religious fervor was not ignited. The Bible was not interesting to me. It was a duty and a burden to read. Also, I had many hard questions, such as, Why did God create those two trees in the Garden of Eden-the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, particularly-and let them commit that sin and crime? Why? What is the real purpose of life? What is life after death? You know, those very common-sense, fundamental questions, not theological questions. But today, millions of young people both here in America and in Korea are asking such questions. They are demanding answers.
You cannot tell young people, my children, for example, "Well, don't talk like that. Just go to church, period. That's the tradition!" In the 20th century, that doesn't work. They demand honest answers. And I was demanding them as well, to know the meaning of my life, my death. Because I faced the terrible experience of a narrow escape from death. I wanted to be ready for death. I didn't want to be trembling all the time, at every turn of my life. I wanted to be ready. But these things didn't come to me, so my heart was remaining cold. But I was a good Christian, no question, I was very faithful and did everything the church asked me to do. One day, Reverend Tong, a famous Korean minister, came to me and said-at that time I was a major in the Korean army-"Major Pak, we will give you a scholarship. Go to the United States, to Texas, where the Church of Christ has a seminary. I will send you there for a free four-year education." I was jubilant! That was almost the greatest dream I could ever dream. I wanted to become a professional and study in the United States. Particularly I wanted to learn English well. How could I beat that kind of deal? He said, "I will give you a free scholarship for four years."
Then he said, "All you have to do is to come back to Korea and become a minister for the Church of Christ." That was the condition. That night, I could not sleep one bit. I was thinking, thinking. Such an incredible deal. "I want to do it. I really want to do it!" But one thing bothered me, my heart. It was not warmed up by God yet. Even though I called upon God in the name of Jesus Christ, that was not real to me. I was not ignited, not really born again. I was not fired up. If God was not for sure in my heart, how could I preach that God to others? That was the question, the agony.
The next day I went to Reverend Tong and politely declined, saying. "I am not worthy of that blessing. I am not worthy of Christ yet. When I am ready, I will tell you."
God Saved My Life
In 1957, I met Reverend Moon. Actually, I did not meet him but I met his disciple. I was invited to a very simple seminar to listen to the Divine Principle. I listened for two nights and, I tell you, at last all the questions of my life that I had been suffering from completely melted away. Then I felt some power, some power of ignition, ticking. Some bubbling in my heart, something. I could see the meaning of life, the meaning of death. The concept of the world and the universe. God and Christ. All these most fundamental questions came to me so absolutely organized. You know, I didn't have even one bit of second thoughts. I immediately understood that God saved my life for this truth. That was my conclusion.
You know what I did? I asked the lady who was teaching me, "I want to meet your leader." At that time, the Unification Church was not popular. It was persecuted. They didn't even reveal the name of the church to me, whether it was the Unification Church or not. But I said, even though I didn't know Reverend Moon's name, "I want to meet your leader." The lady was hesitating because I was a major in the military, with a lot of brass, a very important man at that time, and she didn't want me to be freaked out by seeing the most humble appearance of our church. You saw it, in Chung Pa Uong. There was not even one chair. In the wintertime, there was not even one stove. She said, "We will invite you someday to come to worship at our church." I said, "No, I want to go now." She was very, very embarrassed. "OK, then, I will invite you to our next Sunday service." I said, "No, don't you have a Wednesday night service, like all the other Korean churches?" That was a Tuesday. "What about tomorrow night?" She was absolutely hesitating, but since I was so insistent and she could see that I would not back out, she said, "OK, you come tomorrow night."
In my military uniform, beautifully dressed up, I went to the church. I was looking for some kind of big church with a big sign. I was let into a very humble door. If you saw such a humble door in your own church, you would be freaked out, too. The door was so low, you had to stoop down. It was wintertime, February, and so cold. No stove. No chairs. The young people were sitting and singing a hymn and I didn't know that hymn, since it was a particular Unification Church hymn. But you know what I saw? They were singing out of their souls. It was coming straight from their hearts. It was kind of like the Japanese style, just kneeling down on the floor and singing out.
Then one man delivered the sermon. I did not know who that was. Certainly, everything was strange to me. Then after the service was over, one very humble-looking man stood up. He had been one of us sitting there. He did not have even a proper jacket, just a very simple, second-hand military-style jacket. He stood up and spoke to the congregation. But I was amazed by his power and authority. I was completely inspired. Still I did not know who he was. After the service was over, the lady who had lectured to me came to me and said, "Major Pak, could you kindly meet our leader, Reverend Moon?" That was Reverend Moon. He had been sitting several feet away from me, on the floor just like all the rest of us, worshipping all together. After the service, he was giving extra instruction. That was the beginning of my life with Reverend Moon. It was 1957, 29 years ago.
I tell you, these 29 years of my life have been most productive, happy, joyful, and committed. I am thankful and grateful. I thank God every morning, every evening, every meal. Coming out of my heart! You know, after Reverend Moon's incarceration in Danbury, I came to this country with him after many months. My old friends saw me, those former military academy classmates; they came out to meet me. They said to me, "Bo Hi, what has happened?" I said, "What do you mean?" They said, "You haven't changed a bit! You are just like the same old Captain Pak of the Korean War days. You must be fifty-some years old." (I am exactly 57 years old.) And I told my friends, "You know, I have a secret. I am living such a committed, exciting life. I am happy, jubilant, and bubbling every day, I simply don't have time to get old!"
Furthermore, I said, "You know what? That's not all. I have no time to die!" This is one thing Reverend Moon stresses. Church, he says, conquers death. Death shall be no more. Does it mean I am going to live in this body forever? No. We are going to transform to the spirit world. You know that. This physical body will return to dust, but my spirit, the real Bo Hi Pak, will go on to live forever. Reverend Moon teaches us, "Your eternal life does not begin the day of your death. You have already begun that eternal life now." That is what I practice in my life. I have no fear, no concern about how long I shall live. A hundred years or sixty? Do I have only another year or ten more? That is not a major factor in my life. I am not trembling or worried about getting old. I just want to live my life productively, with the most positive gain for the sake of God and Christ. When the time comes and they call me to Heaven, I am ready to go!
Danbury and God's Providence
You may not know that in 1984, after Reverend Moon entered Danbury, I was kidnapped. Can you imagine? I was kidnapped by bad guys! I was invited to a great banquet, and that dinner party turned into a kidnapping ordeal. Boy! I was blindfolded, with my hands tied, and taken to a very strange place, completely naked. One hand was tied to one chair and the other to another chair. My neck was tied to another chair. They told me I committed the most awful crime and they said, "We were given the order from a higher authority to execute you tonight at one a.m. Then your body will be cut in half, put into an oil drum, weighted down and thrown into a lake. We are professional killers. No one will find you in a million years, not your church or your family. That is what will happen, so don't try to escape.
I thought that the only people who could really want to kill me were the communists, the North Korean agents, or the KGB, because Reverend Moon was so anti-communist. We are damaging the Soviet Union and they have reason to hate us. They had a plot to kill Reverend Moon and I'm sure for the same reason they had a plot to kill me. If that was the case, I was a political prisoner and I knew I was finished. At that point, the first thought that came to my mind was, "I deserve this punishment, this payment, because of my iniquities, wrong-doings, and mistakes. My teacher, my spiritual father, Reverend Moon is in jail. Somebody has to pay the price. That is me." I accepted it.
You know, I was so grateful to God that even in such a horrendous situation, I was not panicky at all. I was absolutely calm and peaceful, absolutely reasoning. My thought was, "If I die, I want to die honorably, not cowardly. I want to die as a child of God, by shouting out, `Heavenly Father, mansei!"' (which means long live Heavenly Father). Since I had no way of knowing when it was one a.m., I just kept saying, "Heavenly Father, mansei! Heavenly Father, mansei!" At any time, I knew the bullet might hit me and I would be finished, but I would have those words on my lips. At one point, I decided I wanted to be dramatic and I just pulled all three chairs at the same time and stood up and shouted out with all of my energy, "Heavenly Father, Mansei!" three times. That scared all the bad people. All of them came over and pushed me and hit me back down. They brought out an electric shock, they said it was 40,000 volts, trying to shock me all over my body. They put a wad of cotton into my mouth, gagging me so that I could not say even one more word. But even though I could not voice anything, I was still telling Heavenly Father, "Mansei," inside of me.
Anyway, you need another trip to hear the entire story. I'm sure you don't mind to come to Korea again. What I am saying is this: what a change in my life! The day I refused to go to Texas to become a minister because I was not sure about God. That was my youngster's days. But now at least I am living my life productively, knowing that I will never die, but will go on. I want to live productively and honorably, in the name of God and the name of Christ.
This conviction is one example of the Unification Church members' convictions. This is what makes our church strong, the people different. So I can speak now, with firm conviction, with heart and sincerity on what I believe, where I stand. Again, from this kidnapping ordeal I was miraculously saved. Otherwise, I wouldn't be here, right? I have so much to be grateful for, thankful to God, Jesus Christ, Reverend Moon, and our church. I'm truly living the most productive, happy, and rewarding life. I want to share this with millions of others.
I would like to ask you this question: Who is Reverend Moon? This is a very crucial question. A very crucial question. Many of you have been thinking, "Who is Reverend Moon?" Because of the things people are saying, that he is the Messiah, he is the one to come, our church has been persecuted, from left to right. No question. Our church has become controversial. Our church has been made a mockery by the media. Our church image is so bad. You know, I know, what the media has done to us. Even Christian communities are hostile. The Korean Christian community is hostile. I'm honest. I'm hiding nothing from you. The Korean Christian churches are more hostile than any other Christian churches in the world. Because they think that we make a claim that Reverend Moon is the Messiah, he is the one to come, and they cannot accept that; it is heresy, anti-Christ. "We Christian churches have nothing to do with that."
Actually when we look back 2,000 years, when Jesus Christ was walking on the face of the earth, a similar situation beset him. He was bombarded by his contemporaries, the people of his age, especially the religious community. They said, "He is a liar. That Jesus of Nazareth, he is a blasphemer. He is the prince of demons." All these words are in the Bible; I'm not making anything up.
Jesus made many profound statements about himself, but never once in the Bible did he claim himself to be the son of God. He said, "son of man." He always called himself the son of man. He never used the word "Messiah" in his own teaching, in the Bible. But he said to the people, "Don't you see even in the Old Testament, that it is said, 'Ye are God'?" Jesus was a mystery. On the one hand, he spoke like God, with the authority of God. "I am in the Father and the Father in me. No one comes to the Father but by me." On the other hand, he said, "You are my brothers. If you believe in my words, you will be like me." He put all of us into the same level as he was. So it was very difficult for the people of 2,000 years ago to figure out who Jesus was.
Finally, what happened? Because of this animosity, this persecution mounted and mounted. Finally, they drove Jesus to the Mount of Calvary for crucifixion. Today, in a way, similar circumstances are occurring once again. Reverend Moon never claimed to be the Messiah. He never said, "I am God. I am speaking with the authority of God." He has never done that. By the way, I am his translator so no one listened to his speeches more carefully than I have. I have to, right? Someone in the audience has the chance sometimes to doze; you can meditate, or pay attention to something else. But the translator has got to listen to every word and not miss any word so you can translate. As you can see, I am the one who, for 30 years, has not only listened to his words but I have also spoken his words. By the way, no translation can be perfect. So I sometimes add many things to Reverend Moon's speech and many times I forget many things he has spoken.
We Are All Sinners
One day, I said to Reverend Moon, "Reverend Moon, I am a sinner." He said, "In what way? What do you mean?" I said, "You know, I have been translating your speeches many times and I couldn't do a perfect job. So I added many things and I lost many things. The Bible said you cannot add one iota or subtract one iota. For this, I am sure I am destined to Hell. But Reverend Moon, please have mercy upon me because at least this poor interpreter has poured out gallons and gallons of sweat. So for the sake of that amount of sweat I shed, please have some mercy upon me."
You know what Reverend Moon said? He said nothing. He just smiled from ear to ear. So still this man, Bo Hi Pak, doesn't know where he is going: Heaven or Hell. But that doesn't worry me a bit. Why? Because I have learned another secret from Reverend Moon. That is, you can g0 anywhere and turn the place into Heaven. Even if you go to Hell, you have the power to turn it from Hell into Heaven!
That is the kind of conviction we live. We live in a hellish world today. Our job, yours and mine, is to transform this world into Heaven, the Kingdom of God on earth. But the Unification Church is much more fortunate than the time of Jesus because the Unification Church has the Divine Principle. Particularly the Principle of Creation, which you have heard.
This clearly shows who Jesus was, is, and how he could speak like that, with what authority. Jesus Christ, the begotten son of God. He was the Christ and Savior, which the Unification Church fervently believes and accepts. We are not moving down even one iota the divinity and qualification of Jesus Christ as Savior and Messiah. We strengthen it. But we do know, also, Jesus Christ was the second Adam. God wanted to begin again, to restore the fallen nature of fallen mankind into the wholesome family of God. He was the one in the position of Adam. If Adam had not fallen, he would have been walking on the earth with the power of the deity. He was supposed to be the walking God and all the children of God were supposed to be walking Gods on the face of the earth. As St. Paul stated, "You are the temple of God. When the spirit of God is within you, then you are the house of that spirit." This human body is a temple, and the master of this temple is the spirit of God dwelling within me. Therefore, if I was not fallen, I would in no way be separated from the will of God, totally one with the will of God, living in perfect oneness. "I am in the Father and the Father in me." Exactly that oneness is the dignity and the original qualification of men if we did not have sin, if there were no fall. Adam was supposed to become that person and Jesus fulfilled that ideal. That is our belief.
Indeed, Jesus was the walking God on the face of the earth, but we also know, however, everyone was supposed to be elevated to that level. Because we are all children of God. We are brothers and sisters. So the concept of the True Parents within the Unification Church is, to me, very noble, beautiful. Because that was the way God wanted to organize the human family. Adam and Eve, the first father and mother of mankind, were supposed to be the God-centered parents of all humanity. Because of their degradation from their position, we all became orphans. Humanity has become orphaned, separated from God. So we have to be restored into that position.
The word "restoration" is very, very important to Unification Church theology. Restoration. We are not trying to go galloping into something unknown, something that never existed. No, there was a plan, a blueprint. Ultimately, human destiny is to become the true temple of God. Indeed, the one true temple of God walking on the earth was Jesus Christ. That was so clear to me in our Divine Principle. So everybody is walking toward that goal, in a different degree of accomplishment. But ultimately, we will get there. Humanity will get there. That is the day of perfection. This is what Jesus said. "You, therefore, must be perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect." How could we be that perfect?
You know, so far the Christian churches could not take that seriously because they could not see how in the world we could be perfect as our Heavenly Father is perfect. But Jesus says so. The Bible says so. The Divine Principle says in the Principle of Creation that perfection was planned and perfectly possible, by a perfect union between God and men, as one temple of God.
And Jesus was the walking temple on the face of the earth. Not even one iota, one minute was Jesus separated from the will of God. He was in the Father and the Father in him. "The Father and I are one." But what is the hope of humanity? That all humanity someday, by the grace of God, shall be elevated or saved to that level of perfection. "You, therefore, must be perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect."
Reverend Moon is pioneering this task. So indeed the Unification Church is leading the messianic message, the messianic role and mission forward. No question about it. Even if because of saying this, I am stoned to death, like Stephen, I have to say it. Because this statement pleases God. I know it. Because when I said this, so much power came to me. Anything else doesn't give me power. We are not thinking, "Reverend Moon is God and everybody else is nobody." Reverend Moon said in his previous ministers' conference, "I am nobody." Reverend Moon said, "I am nobody; still, God is dwelling within me. Therefore, God can dwell within you, too."
When Reverend Moon visited Great Britain, the hostile media there was asking him, "Are you the Messiah?" They were so blunt. Reverend Moon smiled and calmly answered that question by saying, "Yes, I am; and so are you, and you. We are all on the messianic mission." I have never seen a man so humble before the spirit of God. Reverend Moon outrightly said, "I am nobody. I am not different even one iota from you. Only the spirit of God, that is what makes the difference."
In my 30 years of life with Reverend Moon, I have never seen anyone who is so completely dedicated. Completely. Completely loving, day and night. One time, he gave us this slogan, "We must all become crazy about God." That was our Unification Church slogan, believe it or not: "Crazy about God." Then he said, "The Bible said you must love God with all your heart, all your mind, all your soul. If you love someone, such as your lover, with all your heart, mind, and soul, you are actually crazy about that person, aren't you? So you all must be crazy about God."
About the anti-Christ question. Many conservative Christians have said, "Oh, don't go there, don't go to that church. They are the anti-Christ, they are heretics." I have heard that millions of times and I tell you my answer, which comes from my heart and my experience: that doesn't bother me one bit. Do you know why? This is very important. After serving Reverend Moon and living the way of the Unification Church and the Divine Principle, I could not find any greater force that truly loved Jesus Christ. Furthermore, if the Unification Church is anti-Christ, I don't worry about a thing. You know why? That means there's no God. That's my honest conviction. What the Reverend Moon is living for, day in and day out, giving his sweat, blood, and tears throughout his entire life, is to fulfill every word of Jesus in the Bible. That's what the Unification Church is all about. We are ready to sacrifice ourselves for the sake of God and Jesus Christ, for the sake of the Bible. Reverend Moon is teaching the way of life to live for the sake of others, sacrificially. To lay down your life for the sake of others, there is no greater love. We are trying to live every word of that literally. We are living it. "He who seeks to save his own life will die; he who is willing to die for the sake of Christ, will live."
I have nothing to hide from you. We in the Unification Church are trying to live up to this teaching to the letter. If this is the anti-Christ, to me that means there is no God, so I have nothing to lose anyway. That's the way I feel. I am very peaceful, very calm, and very forgiving. I never fight against those people who say, "You are a heretic, an anti-Christ." I pray for them. I can go to any church today and worship with anybody-white, yellow, brown, red, green-it doesn't make a difference. As long as it's a human soul who loves God, I will dare to be your brother. I have no hesitation about that at all.
You know, the anti-Christ truly is in our world today. That is godless communism. That is the anti-Christ, the ones who are truly trying to destroy every teaching given to us by Jesus Christ. Communism is trying to throw God Himself out of the planet. If communism prevails, there is no room for God on the face of the earth. That is the true anti-Christ force, trying to destroy every Godly force.
I came back from Red China. I visited that country and I prayed for that giant land of one billion people. That is a pitiful country. And I know why the country of mainland China became so pitiful. Because God has been demolished. They have forgotten God in that land. They are trying to accomplish the temple, without God. It won't happen.
Communism has been trying to accomplish a socialistic utopia for the last 70 years. But it is losing. Where is that utopia? In the Soviet Union? In Red China? I have not seen it yet. Some people say paradise is lost. I tell you, the working people's utopia was never lost; it never came in the first place.
Instead, what came was killing, murdering. One hundred fifty million people died in the name of that utopia. In order to kill 150 million people in 68 years, you have to kill 44 people every 10 minutes for 68 years. That is the amount of killing they did. What have they accomplished? Forties magazine in the United States called it "the march to nowhere." Nothing. Nothing has ever come about. At least China seems to be realizing this and they are trying to de-communize themselves. The communists are bankrupt. It is a 19th-century superstition.
They call it "scientific socialism," but there is nothing scientific about it. From the 20th-century science, communism is crumbling. That force is still powerful enough to try to take over the rest of the world, your country and mine, your church and mine. I am the first target and you are too, because we believe in God. We are the ones who stand up before this insidious march of atheistic communism. That is what Reverend Moon has been fighting his entire life.
Summarizing my presentation to you, I would like to read these words from Solzhenitsyn, the Nobel laureate from the Soviet Union, and one of the great thinkers of our time. Accepting the Templeton Prize for progress in religion, Alexander Solzhenitsyn said bluntly, "If I were asked today to formulate as concisely as possible the main cause of the ruinous Soviet revolution, that swallowed up some sixty millions of innocent lives of our people, I could not put it more accurately than to repeat, `Men have forgotten God."'
Men have forgotten God. That is why all of this has happened. Solzhenitzyn identified this forsaking of God as the principal trait of the 20th century, which is being sucked into the vortex of atheism and selfdestruction. It is one thing that millions of human beings have been corrupted and spiritually devastated by an officially imposed atheism, such as in the Soviet Union; it is another that the tide of secularism has progressively inundated the West, so that the concepts of good and evil have been ridiculed. This is precisely happening in America. When you forsake God, either in the name of communism or secular humanism, or atheistic humanism, the result will be the same: self-destruction. America and the free world must awaken now to this awesome truth. Otherwise, it will be too late. God or no God is the central issue.
My dear brothers and sisters, today we are facing a crisis, probably unprecedented in human history. We are heading for self-destruction, not only the communists but also in the West. As Solzhenitsyn so clearly stated: When you forsake God, either by the name of communism or by humanism, the result will be the same: self-destruction. The communist world is going toward self-destruction through atheistic communism, but at the same time, the free world is going toward self-destruction in the name of secular humanism.
America Is Forgetting God
I witnessed a beautiful America in 1951. But the America of 1986, you and I both know, is beset with many, many problems. When you dig down to the root cause of these problems, it is that America is forgetting God. The magnitude of the problems of the world is so gigantic, the intervention of God is absolutely necessary. No human government's endeavor can solve the human problems. We need spiritual intervention. What form can that intervention take? Not lightning and thunder, not parting the Red Sea, or the Pacific Ocean, because God used all these methods at the time of Moses and it did not bring the Kingdom of Heaven at that time. Even after the people eye-witnessed the Red Sea miracle, and the miracles in the desert of Sinai, all kinds of miracles, spring water coming out of a rock, they saw one miracle after another, but they still disobeyed God. Jesus performed miracles-a few fish fed 5,000 people; the dead arose; lepers were healed-but still they were able to crucify Jesus Christ on the cross.
Today the scientific miracle like the atomic bomb could make more impact than the Red Sea miracle or the Sinai desert miracle. We have miracles in our hands. If the intervention of God is coming to our world, it must come through truth, enlightened revelation. New truth. The truth shall make us free. So we can see the reality, know the truth, the truth shall make us free. Today, the problem of our world is that people are blinded, not physically but spiritually. They do not see the spiritual reality; they are only trying to pursue the material reality, but that is not everything. There is a spiritual reality.
I tell you, my conclusion is that there is no other truthful weapon. No other truth. At least in my life, this is my testimony. There is no more incredibly important spiritual reality than the Divine Principle. It's a powerful message. It answered the questions, so dramatically, so we are going to be accused as a heretic. But after all, Jesus was a heretic in his time! One can accept Jesus because he is so dramatic, so extraordinary. What our world needs today, East and West, is an extraordinary truth. And I think the Unification Church is offering that opportunity. I do not doubt, even one iota, that that is the case.
So, I am not asking you to accept Reverend Moon as the Messiah. That is not Reverend Moon's claim, in the first place. Furthermore, that is not the reason we brought you over here. That is not the purpose. But I am asking you, humbly and sincerely, to be open-minded so that the spirit of God can speak to you directly and your questions will be answered by God. In the meantime, let us advance our cause, the cause of God, the cause of Jesus Christ. The cause of our freedom, human decency, our God-centered traditional values. We've got a job to do.
The Unification Church could have spent all our money for the purposes of our own church. We could have built thousands of temples around the world, schools like the Little Angels School. We could have thousands of Unification Church temples, but we didn't. We are still renting houses in America. You know what a humble church we are in the States. The reason is that we are reversing the tithing system of the Christian churches, which normally ask for one-tenth to be given to the church. We in the Unification Church spend for ourselves, for our own church purposes, one-tenth. Ninety percent is spent for the education and well-being of the world. We are giving and serving, sacrificially laying down our lives.
Reverend Moon said that the Unification Church building is not important. Saving the nations and the world is what is important. Jesus said, in John 3:16, "God so loved the world, He gave His only-begotten Son, so that whoever comes to him shall not perish but have eternal life." Reverend Moon emphasized that God so loved the world, not just the Christian churches, not just our denomination, but the entire world is the object of God. Therefore, we want to serve and awaken and embrace the world. We want to help the world, to uplift it, so that it can come out of the danger of communism. And save America from the hands of secular, atheistic humanism, as well as Christless capitalism. Yes, there are many evils and wrong-doings out there, but only a handful of good people like you and I together can turn the tide around.
We are living in a historical time. Be open-minded and be united with us, as much as you can, to the degree that you can, and we shall march forward and declare the victory of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth and declare the victory of God. Bring glory to God and His will. Hallelujah. Amen?
I hope I have done my job properly, done justice to you. I am very, very happy I could come back last night from a five-country tour. I brought all the media opinion leaders around to the five countries, including Red China, and then I came last night to Korea, so that I could be in this morning's session. I am most deeply honored to be with you this morning. Someday, I hope you will have the opportunity to listen to Reverend Moon. After even thirty minutes, ministers are absolutely convinced that he is truly the prophet of God, the man of our time who is doing the will of God, for the sake of humanity. That is all we need to know. He is on the good side, on God's side, together with you. We can transform our great country of America and our world and liberate communism, liberate Moscow. That is the real salvation. Two hundred and seventy million people are victims of communism. They are not the communists, they are the victims of communism. They are waiting for the God-loving, freedom-loving people to bring them liberation. Instead, the West is not trying to liberate them but is trying to keep the Red Bear alive. In many cases, our policies are wrong.
In any case, that is our hope. With the power of God, all things are possible. Amen, right? I will be back in the United States shortly, too, so I hope our paths will cross and I will see you again somewhere as you proceed with your Godly work. Once again, it is my great pleasure to welcome you to Korea. God bless you and bon voyage.
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