Unification News for March 2001
Reflections on Chung Pyung
Traveling on long journeys is a time when one can pray, study and reflect freely. I am returning from Chung Pyung where some sisters each shared their problems and worries. On the spur of the moment I was inadequate and unable to help them. I left with a heavy heart and cannot stop thinking of them, for somehow their concerns reflected the situations of a wide cross-section of our community. And I want to try now and put their difficulties into some perspective. For if we can understand the purpose and reason for our struggles from an historical viewpoint, and understand their origin, then we can more easily resolve them. Especially we need to be able to put our own difficulties into perspective and see the whole picture, otherwise they overwhelm us. We need to remember clearly where we are headed, what our goals are, and to keep our vision. For that also gives us an energy and determination to endure and resolve our problems.
"A shining new historical era is in front of us. The time has come when all our cherished desires can be realized." The time when the hopes, aspirations and dreams of all mankind throughout the ages can be realized. The time when God's suffering and pain can be ended as He "sees the realization of His deepest longings come about. The foundation for the Kingdom of Heaven is finally being established of families that attend God"--families that are sanctified, holy and separated from Satan and the satanic environment by the National Level Blessing.
We were each of us "born for history," and were chosen by God because of the merits of our ancestors and because of our potential to become "historical heroes." We were chosen to build the foundation of a new history centering on God. "To start a new history, we have to stand in front of history and endure where no one has ever endured before, and bring victories where victories have never been won before." "History up till now has been a history where Satan has betrayed God. The record of history that God can preserve starts with Father's generation and those that inherit the history of traditions centering on True Parents, and the world that they are trying to establish and preserve for the future. For the standard of life that Father is setting will become the standard of universal history."
So we can understand that our goal is formidable and that nothing less than absolute perfection is being asked of us by God and True Parents. It is what Jesus asked, "Be ye perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven." It is daunting--to go where no one has gone before. We have to radically change our thinking and begin to believe that it is possible, begin to believe in the seemingly impossible, and aim for the stars. However, True Parents are helping us; they have paid great indemnity to open the way. True Father discovered the root cause of mankindís woes and consequently resolved and restored all the complicated, entangled failures of history through a course of great hardship and suffering. All we have to do is follow the directions. They have also helped to sanctify us through the Grace Blessing, and Father has given us the gift of blessed, liberated ancestors who will help, support and protect us. We are not alone. We also have the help of the saints and angels, and each other. But we have to overcome Satan in ourselves, establish mind-body unity, and realize perfection on the individual level and on the family level.
Some members cannot understand why there are an increasing number of problems in individuals and families on the grassroots level when Father is proclaiming and establishing so many amazing conditions, liberating more and more of the spirit world with each proclamation, empowering the strength of the good spirit world, and even God Himself.
Spiritually we under great pressure to bring victory, and all our shortcomings that hinder us from achieving the goals are being exacerbated--heightened and intensified--so that we cannot fail to be aware of them, and hopefully will work to resolve them.
Just because we have ancestors that are blessed and access to greater help from the spirit world than ever before, our situations won't dramatically change for the better and improve overnight. We have to lay the conditions that will mobilize their help. They don't help automatically. They wait to be asked, because we are subject and they are object. We have to tell them specifically how to help us. Also, they cannot come and help us if we have the wrong attitudes. We must be humble, and do our 100% best. We cannot live self-centered, selfish lives. We must live for the sake of God and humanity. And we must live our lives according to the guidance and directions that True Parents and Hoon Mo Nim have given us. We cannot live impure, immoral lives. Also, we need to continually repent for being inadequate, not being serious enough, and failing so many times to take the right attitude. We have to make conditions to help them help us. It takes great energy for the spirit people to change the attitudes and circumstances of physical people. So we need to send them energy by prayer for at least three days, read Hoon Dok Hae, study Divine Principle, serve, sacrifice, give, witness and love people. Then we have to direct the energy from whatever condition we made to help them fulfill their tasks. But still at this time when the physical world is subject, the most powerful conditions are what we do ourselves--the love, words and service that we give to people. That is our most effective instrument for bringing about change. We have to take responsibility and not leave it for anyone else to do. We have to take the initiative, and then we will be helped.
Father is educating the Blessed Wives so that we can make our own foundation in relation to God. He is teaching us urgently how to become one with Him in our everyday lives, and so is Hoon Mo Nim. We need to begin the day by greeting God and offer our plans for the day. We pray when we leave home, then we report what we are doing throughout the day and pray when we return home. Then at the end of the day we report our accomplishments and failures. We also sanctify our environment and connect it to God by an attitude of prayerful reverence, gratitude and humility. True Father is teaching us how to become one with our spouses, through wholehearted acceptance, service and devoted love. He is also helping us to understand how the most intimate relationships between husband and wife are holy and sacred. And he is teaching us how to build families that are united in unconditional love for each other and are centered on God, and how to live for the whole purpose.
True Father is teaching us that to win victory we have to have attitudes of the deepest seriousness and the deepest determination. Jacob brought victory because he fought with all his energy and strength, not caring whether his hip bone was broken or not. To bring victory we cannot center on our own understandings and desires. We have to deny ourselves, and our concepts. We have to be able to deny all things and turn around in a completely new direction or we cannot "usher in the new world." We cannot live centered on myself any longer. The motivation, direction, purpose and content of our lives has to be outward centered. We have to live for another, for the sake of God, our spouse, family and mankind.
This whole new providence centering on Chung Pyung with its emphasis on the spirit world is a great problem for some members, bringing doubts where doubts did not exist before. Because the logic of the spirit world is so contradictory to the logic we have learned so far, especially with regard to science and medicine, as time and matter do not exist in the spirit world. Also, it is invisible, so it is difficult to verify; there are no empirical scales that we can use to measure it by. However, if we can keep an open mind, we will find more and more evidence, even scientific evidence, supporting the seemingly shocking things that Hoon Mo Nim says at times.
I would never have believed at one time that spirits could block a womb and prevent a woman from becoming pregnant. But a sister I know was married for seven years before joining the church and she could never conceive. She never used contraceptives and they were both found to be fertile. Yet within seven years of being blessed, she became pregnant four times. So I have no difficulty accepting that spirits can be in our bodies.
There is a great body of spiritual healings and miracles already recorded that defy conventional science. There are physical conditions considered incurable by medicine, that had no mental or spiritual foundation, that were healed by prayer that calls on God's love and energy. Medical articles also acknowledge the power of the mind to facilitate either healing or death. But science really does not understand the nature of the causal relationship that exists between the spirit and physical. Because some people find these concepts new and difficult to grasp, you donít give up on all that has been accomplished so far in your life. You don't throw out the baby with the bath water. We have to be patient and ask for signs and experiences to help us believe and understand. Spirit world will help us if we ask and trust them to do so. What is most important is to have our own personal experiences with God and the spiritual world. Once we substantially experience their love and protection, sometimes in dramatic ways, our doubts and questions dissolve.
Father said that we "meet God when we overcome hardships through suffering centered on God's will and for God's will." We should not just endure suffering and hardships but use it positively as a way of learning empathy for Godís suffering.
Through it we can understand Godís miserable path and we can desire to comfort and liberate God from all misery and pain.
"We have to long for God through our tears, difficulties and suffering. Then no matter how difficult our situation, if God walks with us it will be a happy place." We also find God when we are "victors over our self," when we have no concept of self and reach the zero point of complete humility. Last time I saw Father during our 21 Day Blessed Wives Workshop I was so moved when I saw how totally humble True Father is. He had no concept of self at all. And he radiated such utter sweetness, kindness and gentleness when I sang for him.
Father also said that the fastest way to find God is through witnessing, that "the place where you finally cross over to meet God is the place in Satan's den where you are in agony centering on love for humanity." Yet a sister told me how impossible it is to witness once you start family life. She just accepted it as a matter of course that an expanding, growing church should stop growing in membership once the young members are blessed. But that is not true at all. Sisters can witness even with a baby strapped to you, or in a stroller. Children can accompany you no matter what their age. Many times the brightness of your children's spirit attracts people and makes it easier to witness. All you have to do is keep an evening free each week in your home, and you and your husband can take turns teaching guests and taking care of the children. I've done it and so have lots of other couples. Also, that keeps a family outward looking and protects you from the danger of centering only on your own family.
The simplest way for sisters to resolve the struggle to love their husbands is to sincerely ask God to show you how He loves your spouse, and believe that God will answer you. Absolutely you will experience how God loves your spouse, and He will show you your husband's good points, and show you how to win his love. It's no good expecting him to change. We have to change ourselves, deny our own fallen nature habits, likes, dislikes and expectations. There are sisters who have had serious problems or experiences that scarred them. But really when we honestly tell God our problems and ask for help resolving them, He will always provide the healing and help we need. Perhaps He will point you in the direction you need to go to receive the necessary understanding and support.
"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.
For everyone that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
Or what man is there of you, whom if his son asks bread, will he give him a stone?
If ye then being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? (Matt. 7)
Becoming one with your spouse is crucial. For it is not possible to become one totally with God unless you can wholeheartedly love and become one with your spouse in a loving, reverent, physical relationship of love. Father once said that that is the place where mind and body become one. Sometimes when you touch him/her, it will even feel as if you are touching yourself. It is not easy for husband and wife to love each other sometimes because we are restoring the love that was lost to God when Adam and Eve fell, the love that enabled Satan to dominate the world. And it is through the restored love of restored husband and wife that God regains dominion of the world.
Sisters with young children expressed fears about their children losing faith in their teenage years. The most important point to protect your children's faith is for them to grow up with parents who are united, and genuinely love each other, and sincerely love God and True Parents.
I would also like to share a few points that might be helpful. From the time we bear our babies, and in all our dealings with them, from feeding to cleaning, we should always feel they represent the world and are God's children, and never relate to them in a purely personal way. We should always try to keep a prayerful attitude centered on God and True Parents, treating them with respect and reverence in our hearts. Children become sensitive to that vibration, and once they are used to it they feel happiest in it, for the spirit of prayer is expansive and enabling, not narrow, limiting or dominating. I always tried to think like that, and as my children grew older, if I would sometimes spontaneously hug them and reach out to them in an unprayerful attitude, they would immediately rebuff me. But if I were really prayerful and thinking of God and the world, they would be incredibly loving and responsive.
Father also said that "when our children are lonely and miserable, we should teach them that we are miserable because God is miserable. And we should comfort them with prayerful hearts, saying, "Although you stand in a lonely, miserable place now, your descendants will not perish, and your future will not be bleak. This I will prove to you. Don't feel resentment because we can't feed and clothe you now." Let them know that such parents are holy parents." Then as they grow older, they won't be envious of the comfortable existence and material benefits others have. For they will respect their parents and will value the internal content that their parents taught them. Another time Father said that "we should teach our family that he is our grandfather and that "Because I received love from grandfather, I am like your grandfather." He said that we should teach them that "True Father became as he is because he received love from God. He receives love from God and he is your grandfather. I received more love from this grandfather than anyone else and I am one with the grandfather. That is why I am the worldís best father. So I am the best in the world when it comes to loving you."
Are you the best in loving your children? You must instill these kinds of thoughts into them. This must be continued for centuries and millennia; then ancestors in the spirit world and the descendants on the earth will receive blessings thousand and ten thousand fold."
One sister expressed her loneliness, that no leaders ever visited them. She was feeling a lack of love. One solution is to support our leaders, and love them, and pray for them, and treat them respectfully. Also, we need to keep ourselves busy, loving and serving others in our environment. For when we are busy loving and caring for others, witnessing and living for the sake of the world, we donít have time to think and worry about ourselves. Sometimes we are worried about what our neighbors would think, but when "we are crazy to love God and are crazy to do God's will, we never perish" or diminish, but will rather grow in stature, and become respected for our sincerity and dedication and goodness, and will become a source of inspiration in the community.
St. Joan of Arc once gave a revelation to inspire members. She said that True Parents want to give Blessed Couples glory and uplift them, and that by making us Tribal Messiahs they were giving us a position in the spirit world that would be second only to themselves. And she described how future generations would pay homage to our lives, visiting places we frequented, and recalling how and where we overcame different problems of faith, and how we developed our heart of love. She said that to be the messiah/head of a tribe and lineage, we have to be worthy. Father also said that the "position to receive such benefit of glory can only be obtained by going through a barrage of indescribable hardships." Also, she said that we should be grateful for conflicts and difficulties because they help us to build strong spiritual muscles that will enable us to stand straight in front of God. And that the time would come when we wonít be able to experience the hardships that enable us to grow quickly. So we should welcome them and not complain, as later we will regret lost opportunities.
That is why our leaders are exhorting us to fulfill the condition of bringing 180 tribal members. True Parents want us to fulfill all the conditions necessary, so that we qualify to receive all the blessings they want to give us.
"So Unification Church life means not feeling resentful even when living a prison life and suffering. It means thinking that everything is my fault and always attempting to be loyal to heaven." It means that in everyday life when we encounter situations that could make us angry, frustrated or annoyed, we have to turn them around and treat those experiences as indemnity conditions, offering them to God with patience, tolerance, love and understanding. Every time we get affected by our environment and react negatively, we show that we havenít separated from Satan, that we still carry fallen nature, and in reality are still his child.
I am struggling myself to realize all the above goals, and have a much longer way to go than most brothers and sisters. I stumble when I am tired or feeling down; sometimes I have even momentarily felt trapped. But sooner or later I am always uplifted and resurrected in spite of myself. I think it is because I always try to honestly report my situation to God, and ask for help to overcome and to again have hope. Heung Jin Nim once told us that as long as we have hope, even if our hope is just a flicker, then spirit world can always help us.
This article was written on the plane from Seoul to Paris while I was sitting with a live bomb ticking away in a suitcase directly above my head. I reported the unclaimed case in Paris to the hostess. When we were inside the terminal building, police moved us so that they could defuse a bomb found in a suitcase. And twenty minutes later there was an explosion!
(All quotations are taken from Fatherís speech of August 28, 1971: "The Way Our Blessed Families Should Go," given at Chung Pyung Training Center.)
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