The Way For Students
by Rev. Sun Myung Moon
Section 1. Life Of Faith (Part 2)
4. The Attitude Of Faith
1) Faith and the Center
What is mankind's desire? There's no center in this world. What is God's desire? It is to set up the center. Then what is mankind's desire? It is to find the center. Therefore what is mankind's desire? It is to meet the center that God set up.
What is the ideology behind this desire to set up a center? It is the Messianic ideology. What is the desire of mankind? It is to set up the center, centering on the central figure. God sent central figures through the course of misery in the age of the servant, the age of the adopted son, the age of the son and the age of the parents, by overcoming opposition on all these dimensions. Finally God sent the last central figure, that was the Messiah.
The Messiah should be established as the center. Setting up the center is done not by you, but by God. Then you, together with the central figure, stand on center stage. Our desire is to find and attend the center, and God's desire is to establish the center.
Then what is the fulfillment of God's and mankind's desire? It comes when mankind finds and attends the center; at that time God's desire for providential restoration will be fulfilled.
As a Unification Church member you have to have a new attitude of new faith. Here the most important thing is to have firm, unwavering faith in the center. Until you have this kind of faith, no matter how many times you pledge, it is no use. When you go this way you have to ask yourself, "What will I do if I face such-and-such a situation?" You have to answer yourself too. On the way you will have times when the person closest to you will tempt you. He will tell you sweet and attractive words that pull your ears. He will do all kinds of things to pull you down and block your way. What will you do in this case? Look at your face in the mirror and say, "Get out of here, you monster! I'll go my way day and night!" What wonderful words!
You have to know clearly about the center and the goal in your life of faith. It should be a supernatural Being. You are living a life of faith because you want to be better than you are now. To arrive at the absolute standard of that desire, you have to distinguish the first and absolute central standard of faith. The four seasons change in the cycle of one year. Likewise, no matter how many times your environment changes, you have to stay and work with the same goal. If your faith comes and goes, you can't do anything. If your faith is not firm, you can't do anything.
2) Absolute Faith
A. Faith Requires Self-denial And Repentance
In the Last Days, before the coming of the ideal world, the judgment will come. Those who can avoid this judgment are those who have deserted this world. If you have cherished your worldly situation and relationships you cannot avoid the judgment. If you follow the normal flow of the world you will not avoid the judgment.
Those who break away and go the opposite way will avoid it. Otherwise you will not be part of the new beginning which is taught by all religions. "Abandon this world!" "Cut off all relationships!" "Leave the world behind!" "Don't compromise!" "Cut yourself off from the world." "Deny the world and seek a new awareness." To attain this kind of awakening, to open the future and restore the past, religions request believers not to compromise with this world.
Religions teach people to beat their bodies, to hang upside down, to be meek and humble, to sacrifice and serve. That's all they can teach you. Is this kind of education right or wrong? It's right. So the way of faith is the way of obedience, not self-reliance. It is not the way of self-assertion. You must know this. What did I say? The way of life is what? The way of obedience, not self-reliance. There is no alternative. There is no debate.
Why is this so? To deny yourself you have to deny all of history. You have to completely deny it. You have to deny it until it's completely denied! Let me ask you some questions. How good are your fingers? How good are your eyes? How good are your ears? How good are your mind and desire? These are fundamental problems that you have to solve.
What is the most serious problem when you go to the heavenly world? I myself, the enemy, am blocking the way. I myself am the enemy. Until now your struggles in your life of faith, your prayer and hard work, are all to gain victory over yourself. That is to win over the victory of Satan's accusation.
I have to deny myself in the name of God. I have to deny myself completely. I need complete denial. If I do so Satan will not follow me, because all the threads he follows will be cut off. All of you must cut these threads with a sharp knife.
Belief requires what? It requires repentance. Repentance. What kind of repentance? There are historical repentance and present repentance. God wants both. Knowing this you have to be a person who prays, "All the sins of the past are my sins. All the sins of the present are my sins. Oh Father, forgive me."
Jesus Christ came and proclaimed, "Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand." The first thing he said was, "Repent." This seems contradictory, repenting and going into heaven. Don't you think so? This is paradoxical. Man is already in a difficult situation, why does he need to repent again? Repentance means to turn around completely. A sinner who does not realize his mistake must repent and turn around completely once he recognizes his sin. That means turn around 180 degrees.
If you do repent, then what happens? You become more determined, don't you? You feel very serious, weeping and wailing and ready to risk your life. You determine never to sin again. There are two different worlds, the world before repentance and the world after repentance. The difference is not 45 degrees. It's 180 degrees different; that means completely opposite. Do you follow me? If there were a world of Satan, it becomes a world of heaven. This is what religion tries to bring about.
There is no ego for those who seek the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth. There is only prayer and overcoming. That's all. After you find the Kingdom of Heaven there will be a self, but on the way to the heavenly world it is impossible for the self to exist. The democratic way will not do. Why? Because it insists on the assertion of the self. As far as you assert yourself in that situation, that world belongs to Satan's realm.
On the way of our faith there is no self-assertion or self-concept. Absolute faith means there is no concept of self at all. Isn't that so? If I say I believe absolutely it means there should be no opposition to that within myself. When you say you are united with God, there could be no ego. You have to unite completely with the subject, leaving no trace of self. In the life of faith there is no place for egoism.
A snake cannot grow without shedding its skin. To shed its skin, the snake crawls between narrow rocks. An opposing force is needed to push the old skin off. The force of darkness has soaked through our body and blood. How can we free ourselves from this situation? We cannot follow it. We need wisdom. That means going the opposite way. To be completely free from it, we have to go completely the opposite way.
B. Be Single Minded
You have to be absolutely single-minded. What kind of mind do you have? Are you burning with single-mindedness, are you lukewarm, or are you single-minded because you think there is no other choice? Which one are you? You all say you are burning with single-mindedness. You have good mouths. Your ears are precious and your thoughts are precious. What kind of mind do you have? You are burning with single-mindedness, right?
C. Be Unchanging
When you think of something precious or valuable, like diamonds or gold, why do we call these treasure? Why do we need such things? They represent material. When you say treasure it reminds you of gold and diamonds. People have valued such things in the past, just as they do now and will in the future.
Thinking of this, we know that precious things are unchanging. Why do we need them? They are valuable because they set the criteria of comparison, representing the center. They have special qualities in that they are unchanging, even thought the surrounding environment may change. That's the quality of treasure. It's natural that people want to hold it, possess it and be near it.
From this viewpoint, what kind of people should we be? We are the same. We should not only be unchanging, but we should be harder than diamonds, and more beautiful than gold. From this viewpoint, what sort of people were the great people, the saints and sages of history? They were people who had unchanging ideals, unchanging lives and unchanging deeds. Their goals never changed. They all were people with unchanging goals.
When you study Divine Principle, the beginning and the end should be the same. A changing person is an evil person. A changing person will be the prey of Satan. That's the absolute law. A changing person will be the prey of evil. Even if something is good, when its appearance and content change it becomes the prey of Satan. This is Satan's strategy.
In the Bible the amazing thing is that the beginning and the end are related. God says these amazing words: "I am the Alpha and the Omega." Another amazing thing is that God wants to meet us. That's enough; we need no more than that from God. God is the God of salvation for fallen mankind.
Because the way of faith is centered on the mind, all religions teach us to have an unchanging mind. The heart you cherished ten years ago should be the same now. If a religion teaches that the mind remains unchanged beyond death, that is the true religion.
You cannot complete your life of faith in one morning or one day. It's a lifelong way. Centering on eternity, beyond death, we must keep the same way and the same mind. You must know this clearly. You must be an unchanging pendulum. You must have a core. What kind of core? It is unchanging and eternal. No matter how difficult, sorrowful or painful it is, it is still unchanging.
Even in the animal world there are unchanging animals. What kind? Sheep are unchanging, do you know that? When the owner comes with a knife to cut their throat, they just say, "Maaa." They don't struggle or kick. When the owner shears their wool, they don't move. That's why the sheep was chosen to be an offering. What is next? The cow. What is the cow? The cow lives a life of suffering from birth. Its meat is offered to man; even the bone is offered to man. The cow offers everything to man. Next is the dove. What is the dove? The dove coos for its lost love. It misses its lost love more than any other animal. It misses its first love. Absolute obedience, absolute sacrifice, absolute love. The symbolic offerings representing these things are the sheep, the cow and the dove. Doesn't it seem so?
D. Absolute Obedience
What will happen in the Last Days? If world Christianity brings victory representing 6,000 years of sorrow and pain, the Lord of the Second Advent will have nothing to do with sorrow, pain and misery. But if worldwide Christianity fails to lay that foundation, the coming Lord will endure sorrow, pain and misery for the sake of the believers. This is just like the situation of Jesus Christ, who came to the Jewish people who had been prepared by God. Yet they failed to carry out their responsibility, and Jesus had to taste the bitterness of pain and sorrow. You must know this.
If you are called upon this foundation after the indemnity has been paid, you must obey absolutely. Until when must you absolutely obey? Until God's sovereignty over one nation is restored, and all fallen culture has disappeared. How long should the Israelites have obeyed Moses? They should have obeyed him absolutely until they had eliminated the seven tribes in Canaan. Noah's family too had to obey Noah absolutely. Until when? For three generations; that is, down to his grandchildren.
Do you know why the words "absolute obedience centered on God" came to exist? Fallen mankind finds these words distasteful, but to God. they are very pleasant. You must know this.
So religions tell you to determine your mind, and centered on that determination, to go straight. In order to go straight to the goal you must obey absolutely. No obedience means no success. Obedience will bring success. That's the way it is.
You have to have absolute faith, absolute obedience, and absolute love. These are the three conditions. Absolute what? Absolute faith, absolute obedience and absolute love. The word "absolute" includes one faith, one obedience and one love.
E. Go Straight Forward With Your Eyes On God
Satan controls the right, the left and behind you. Any way you go Satan will take you away. The only way you can go is forward. To where? The destination is unclear. When you go straight forward, that means move toward the place where God is.
Adam didn't go straight forward. Where did he go? Eve went to the left, Adam went to the right, centered on Satan. Both of them went Satan's way and were separated. Satan called Eve to the left, and called Adam to the right. They listened and they fell, and were destroyed. Satan did this, but according to the principle of restoration, what would an angel do? He would say don't go that way, go straight, move straight forward toward God. He would protect their right, left, and back, and roll them on their backs toward God. The battle is being fought on both the left and the right. Good and bad angels are engaged in battle. Lift up your righteous right hand and punch the angels on the right side, and with your left hand, punch the angels on the left side. Kick Satan behind you too. When you walk forward don't stretch out your arms for help. Whenever you stretch out your arms the angels will grab them.
If you stretch out your arms, who will grab them? Satan. You will shake hands with Satan. If Satan and your mother were on your right, if your father were on the left, and your brother were behind you, then when you shake hands with them you will form a ring with them. In the life of faith, you have to reject everything. This is the law of denial. Why do you have to do this? Because by fate, we are in the position to escape from Satan's side. So by rejecting everything, we can set a new direction. Do you follow?
You need to take the right attitude in your life of faith. You have to know where you stand. Do you follow? You have to see very clearly. See what? God. Can you see God? God is invisible, so you must look for God in the advanced religions. But you cannot believe in God blindly. God has his blueprint. To build a house you first need a plan, then you have to build a foundation. Upon that foundation you can build the house, and eventually cut the ribbon. You need a plan. To accomplish the will of God there are plans for every stage.
F. Absolute Faith
What was the fall? The fall means everything was separated. That's what the enemy did. Satan separated God, Adam and Eve. He separated Eve and Adam and made them enemies. They became unable to communicate with each other. They had no communication centered on God's love. Originally they should have shared their love with heaven. Instead they became enemies. Parents and children became enemies and brothers became enemies. This was the seed of fallen history.
This history is in conflict with God's original love. However, following this contradictory history, God raised up filial people one by one, like a relay. Like passing the baton in a relay, God's love passed from one person to another until they reached the finish line. This has been God's struggle.
Centering on what is the baton handed down? Centering on true love of God. Also, absolute faith is needed to relay the baton. It's impossible to find true love without absolute faith. Unless you believe absolutely, absolute love will not appear. Therefore you have to have absolute faith. Please have absolute faith that "God is my father."
The true life of faith does not come from compromise or in relation to your environment, but from an absolute position. This is inevitable. This absolute position is not a place that everyone likes, or where they can dance. It's an extremely lonely place. There are not two people there, only one. "Absolute" means going beyond reciprocal elements. That place is extremely difficult, extremely stifling, extremely lonely and extremely dangerous.
What is the direction of the absolute process? There are not two directions, only one.
You may have decided to live a life of faith because others are going that way. You may believe in the Bible because other people do. If you are like that, when somebody comes and touches you, you just give up. This kind of changeable faith is not real faith. Faith should be absolute. You should say, because God is absolute, so am I. Raise your hands if you think you are like that.
5. Suggestions For Your Life Of Faith
1) When You Feel Needy
On the way of faith, why do you feel needy? Because your internal standard has fallen. Once your internal standard falls, no matter what you are doing, you are not satisfied with the results. Therefore to be internally united with God so He can come to you is most important. How to attain that position should be your main concern.
When you pray and set conditions you will feel new energy coming, without knowing it. Supernatural energy will come to you. It's like receiving a radio signal which is being broadcast; you feel something coming into your mind. The more straight and pure your mind, the more you will resonate with this energy.
2) When You Are in Difficulty
When you undertake a great project, you have to expect that one-third of the people will oppose it. Through this opposition you feel the value of what you are doing. Gradually you will realize how much you appreciate it. Those who struggle through difficulties are able to share a common feeling with those who have gone through the same course.
I think you might have had the experience of shedding tears without reason, in deep sorrow. Through experience we know the feeling of sorrow. That sorrow is not our own sorrow. Actually, it is historical sorrow. Who brought this sorrow? God brought it. Who caused this sorrow initially? Not God, but mankind. After all, this sorrow is to save us. It is not only to save one person, but to save the nation and the whole world. Without a nation we cannot save ourselves. You must know this.
3) How to Overcome Difficulty
Don't be discouraged when you face difficulty. When persecution comes, don't worry. Instead, we have to be proud that we are preparing ourselves to receive heavenly fortune in the future. There's no need to worry. Even though someone says he's going to slit your throat, it's no problem.
When we say, "Let's overcome our surroundings," these words suggest we are in danger. Yes, we are often in a dangerous position. If you cannot dance to my tune, it's hard to overcome. If you do, you can overcome your surroundings.
So don't doubt and don't try to avoid danger. Go straight ahead and confront it directly. If the mountain is high, the valley is deep. Likewise, to receive a big blessing you have to overcome big trials. God will come to you. After a long winter you will see springtime. That's true. Then the summer will come. Summer is like a valley. These are natural phenomena.
When you face difficulty, remember the coming blessing and prepare yourself to receive it and to pass it on to mankind in the future. Prepare your bowl for the blessing.
4) Father's Attitude toward Difficulty
When Father was in prison for two years and eight months, I did heavy labor in a concentration camp. I worked in a fertilizer factory, shoveling piles of ammonium sulfate and putting it into sacks. Each sack had to be the same weight. Then I had to put it on a conveyor belt.
When the salt was first made it was hot, but after it cooled it hardened like rock. Since it had been there for several years, it was hard as rock. It was very hard to shovel it. Everyone had a quota to fulfill in eight hours. Ten people made up one team, and each team had to fill 1,300 sacks per day. If we couldn't finish this quota in eight hours, our food was cut in half. One day's food ration was 1.7 bowls of grain. There were no side dishes, only watery soybean soup or plain salt water. That was all we ate while laboring eight hours a day.
The Communist purpose was to kill us through this heavy labor. Everyone who came into this prison camp would go out dead within three years. This was for certain. Those who came to this prison were already doomed to death. Normally, average people with good food could fill at most 700 sacks per day. But our work quota was almost double. If we took big bites, we could finish our food in three bites. So after breakfast, on the way to the work site our legs were already wobbly. In this condition we had to work from morning till evening. The misery was beyond description.
In prison I determined to live on just half the daily ration. Everyone was certain to die on this ration anyway. As you know, man does not live by bread alone, but also by the words of God. It took half a month to make this determination. I ate half, and the other half I gave away to others. The important thing was how happy I was spiritually, how much I felt a sense of spiritual accomplishment and received God's grace by doing so. This was a great internal spiritual comfort.
Life is very scientific. When I was laboring, I never thought I was laboring. I thought of it as a time of prayer. I always imagined many wonderful things on the world level. We left the camp at 8:00 in the morning and arrived at the factory at 10:00. We had ten minutes to visit the toilet. By that time we already felt very tired. We felt pain from our empty stomachs. But I didn't think of the pain. Those who thought of the pain and their hungry stomachs always looked forward to resting. Each sack had to be filled with 40 kilograms, then lifted up onto a conveyor belt. That was the hardest work. No one wanted to do it. But I always volunteered to do this most hated job. Continuing this work meant certain death. So somehow I had to build up my physical energy to do this hard work. There was no other way to survive. You have to be responsible for the hardest work. Think in this progressive, positive way.
There was no time to rest, with 1,300 sacks to fill. Those 1,300 sacks would stack up to a height higher than this lecture hall. To shovel the fertilizer into one sack then lift it onto the conveyor belt took five minutes and ten seconds. It took other teams fifteen minutes. At that rate they could never finish their quotas. We were digging into a mountain of fertilizer, so if we moved the scale it took a longer time. I figured out how to do this without moving the scale.
In the beginning the team didn't agree with this method, but since they knew that I was doing half the work alone, their consciences led them to help me and follow my method. Actually it was an effective way to work. I received a prize as a model worker every year from the Communist Party. I also educated the newcomers how to work.
Such conditions certainly weaken the body. The hair starts to fall out and the skin swells. Usually after six months a prisoner would start to spit up blood. They would think it was tuberculosis and just give up and die. Most people could bear this life for one and a half to two years at the most.
Can you imagine how hungry we were? It is beyond expression how much we wanted to eat.
How much we thought of food! We missed food to the point of death. If someone was too sick to go to the factory, his food was automatically cut in half. No work, no food. That was the Communist principle. So everyone went to work just to receive three meals, even if they were sick. They did their best to receive the food, and after they got back to the prison they would die while they were eating. At that time, those next to the dying man would struggle desperately for his food, like on a battleground.
Under these conditions Father studied deeply about man, and thought, "Have I ever missed God more than I miss food?" I lived with this comparison every day. I thought I must love God more than anything else, more than food. I thought I came here not to eat a handful of grain. I came here to open the way of indemnity for mankind. I never took the attitude that my work was distasteful. So I was famous.
What kind of person do you think Father is? Father's character is very hasty. I cannot bear it if someone slanders me. I cannot bear it if someone hits me, and I hate to lose. I have quite extreme characteristics. Because of this temperament and character, I have done well in many fields. There is nothing I cannot do. Whatever sport I play, I determine to win. My brain is not so bad either.
With this kind of character, can you imagine how many times I had to endure unbearable things? Think how many times I had to endure shameful situations. But I had to overcome all of this for God. God must have a fiery character like me. If He acted by His fiery character, God could have swept away all of this world. Yet because He endured such a long time, this world still exists. God even refrained from taking revenge against Satan. Since I know God endured so much, I could repent and endure everything. That is why the Unification Church exists today. You must know this.
Since I know God, who endured so much difficulty, indignation and injustice, how could I stain or scar God's will of restoration? That's why I have persevered until now. The Unification Church must go the way of endurance in this position, overcoming, forgiving, and being proud of our position.
I tell you, no matter how much indignation and injustice you feel, it will never match my feelings. No matter how much Rev. Moon feels indignation and injustice, it will never match God's feelings. That's why I endure. This is the place where our hearts connect. You must know that within this sorrow, the way of God's heart will widen.
5) The Test of Faith
There are three tests in your life of faith that you must go through at the risk of your life. They are the test from Satan, the test from the saints and sages, and the test from the angels. Unification Church members may be allowed to freely pass these tests.
On the way to God, when we seek God and the way of faith, who dares to get in our way? Unknowingly, doubt will block your way. Then sin will block your way. Unexpectedly, the force of death will block your way. So we must go over the path of doubt, the path of sin and the path of death.
Are you the possession of God? How? To select the best person through a test, the test should be difficult, not easy. A good teacher thinks of difficult test questions, not easy ones. Isn't that right? Does a good teacher allow students to pass easily?
Then do you think God is a good teacher, an average teacher or a bad teacher? He is absolutely a good teacher. Since He is absolutely a good teacher, what kind of test questions would He make? They would be absolutely difficult questions.
When God and Satan question each other, God will ask, "Hey, Satan, can you do this?" Satan will say, "Of course, why couldn't I do that?" When Satan asks God, "What about you, can you do this?" God should say, "Yes I can do that." If God said, "I cannot do that," what would you think? It shouldn't be that way.
When God thinks of the way to subjugate Satan, what kind of method would He think of? What does Satan hate most? This is the question. There are groups who like what God likes, and groups who like what Satan likes. Are there any students who like tests? Have you ever met that kind of person? No student likes tests, but they are necessary. Don't you think so? Even though you don't like tests, they are inevitable.
Then where is the place that God gives you tests and homework? Where is the place that Satan gives you tests and homework? You have to know this. God's testing place and Satan's testing place cannot be the same place. Where are those places? This is simple. The outside world is Satan's testing place; the inside world is God's testing place. What kind of test will God give, and what kind will Satan give? They are extreme opposites.
6) Points of Caution in a Life of Faith
What is the difference between believers and those who don't believe? Those who don't believe live centered on their families and society. But believers lead their lives centered on their families, society and the church.
Today, believers are on the edge of life and death.
In our life of faith, sometimes we see people who struggle because of someone else. Sometimes because of someone else you cannot go on your way. In such cases, everything depends on your mind.
The way of faith is not determined by yourself. It's not the way you view it yourself. The way of faith is the way to advance to a higher stage through relationships with many leaders in the spiritual world. After you have relationships with Peter, John and Jacob, then finally you can move up to the place where you can relate with Jesus.
On the way of faith, the most fearful thing is to become angry centered on yourself. Don't get angry, don't get mad. You will lose everything when you get angry centered on your own desire. Now, through your life you are marching forward and struggling with these problems. You have to know whether you are standing still, marching forward, or stepping backward. Knowing this clearly, you have to try what you are doing one more time.
You must know what type of person you are. You need to think, "because I am this type of person I am suited for this field. Because I have this kind of talent and have this kind of character I am going this way." You need to know this. Some people have the mission to serve, some people have the mission to educate, some have the mission to do business. You need to know instinctively, centered on your original mind, where your talents lie.
When spring comes you feel whether the air is warm or cool. You know how you feel. You have different feelings depending on the temperature. Likewise when you meet somebody, you can tell his level of faith at first sight. Therefore when you meet somebody who has a low level of faith you will soon be disappointed. You just don't want to talk with that person. That kind of feeling is not your own. This feeling of dislike is not your own.
You have to be able to establish a standard for your life, through your accomplishments, and you have to testify to what degree of confidence you have in your life of faith. Father will not always be with you. God will not always be with you.
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