Creating a World of Peace - The Thought and Works of Sun Myung Moon by Joon Ho Seuk

Volume 5 - Education for a Culture of Peace [Part 1 of 5]


1. Introduction

A. Problems of Education Today
B. True Meaning of Education

2. Goals Of Education

A. Mature Character
B. Loving Relationships and Family
C. Mastery of Knowledge and Skills
D. Balanced Education

3. Responsibilities Of True Teachers

A. The Family and Education of Children
B. The Role of Teachers
C. Nature as Teacher
D. How God Has Educated Humankind

4.Reverend Moon's Education

A. Family
B. Nature
C. Schools
D. Life Experiences
E. God

5. Reverend Moon's Educational Activities

A. A Life Devoted to Education
B. Educational Organizations

1. Introduction

A world of peace is based on appropriate education. As a man who has spent his life teaching the truths he uncovered as a teenager, Reverend Moon is uniquely qualified to address the question of how to educate for a culture of peace.

His teachings themselves, which were introduced in the first volume of this series, coupled with the immense variety and depth of his experiences, inform his vision and address issues fundamental to education. This volume, therefore, contains insights and understandings of great consequence for our future.

A. Problems of Education Today

It is clear that education today has serious problems. While our scientific knowledge of the physical world has dramatically increased, and education is available to more people than ever before, many young people today are seriously lacking moral and spiritual education.

Young people in America may be well-schooled in the ideas of individual freedom and rights, but many have no moral compass to guide them. Thus they lead self-destructive lives, abusing drugs, exposing themselves to the many dangers of free sex, and even turning to suicide while still in school.

The Reality of American Young People

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
Take a look at American young people today. The young generation has already turned into living corpses. America has governed and educated her people with democracy, but look at young people today. The reality is that young people are taking drugs and living lives of free sex. They are languishing under the influence of individualism.
And there is ideological confusion too. Christianity is supposed to be the mainstay of the ideological foundation, but everything has been turned topsy-turvy and plunged into the abyss of despair. The direction has been totally lost.

Reverend Moon's teachings stress the importance of proper relationship between mind and body. The human mind, or spirit, which seeks things of eternal value, such as truth, beauty, goodness and love, should have priority in our lives.

The physical, temporary needs of our body should be secondary. In the current materialistic culture young people learn to value that which satisfies the physical body, seeking instant gratification through food, sex, drugs, and the acquisition of money and material possessions.

The Result of Current Materialistic Education

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
What kind of world are we living in? We should live based on the mind. However, this world has become a totally materialistic world in which many people do not even think about whether they have a mind or not.
We can understand this fact by looking at the current educational system, which puts so much emphasis on materialistic civilization and values. Modern people have such little regard for the valuable mind inside each person. Rather, their focus is fixed on the money before their eyes. They drift toward denying the mind and God.

B. True Meaning of Education

Reverend Moon emphasizes that education is not solely for the purpose of studying academic material in order to gain knowledge.

That is only part of education. The true purpose of education is to create mature people who are able to realize their potential as children of God.

Education Teaches God's Heart

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
When you study at school, you do not study for your own sake, but in order to grasp God's world of heart by deeply realizing the beauty of His Creation. How wonderful this is! By knowing God, we can both elevate and deepen our love.
Even if your teacher treats you roughly, you must understand that he seeks to enable you to absorb the love of Heaven and of nature and to establish you as a central figure and master of love.

In essence, education is to produce people who resemble God, while at the same time fully developing their natural talents and abilities to achieve their individual potential.

Education is not a self-centered pursuit.

To resemble God requires that we experience some of what God experiences. Thus we should have many experiences in nature to feel joy at the beauty of God's creation. We should also experience deep relationships with our teachers and our parents, who stand in the position to convey God's heart of parental love to us.

Learn from the Experience of Others

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
You cannot acquire ability in a moment. You can only become good at something by actually being actively involved and getting down to the nitty-gritty of the problem. The reason you go to school and study is to learn from the experience of other people.
In order to inherit their achievements and make them yours, you have to walk the paths they trod. You will acquire ownership only after having understood and putting that understanding into practice.

Education is necessary because we cannot quickly learn all there is to learn by ourselves without the help of others. Similarly, we cannot develop our skills and talents without guidance and coaching from someone who is already accomplished in those areas.

Human beings learn from each other by observing and copying their actions. The experience of learning from another is one of inheritance and requires that we actively participate together with those who have already attained a higher level of mastery.

Although our first teachers are our parents, we must also receive education from those outside the family who can give us the qualifications to be accepted into the larger society. However, since the units making up this larger society are families, the teacher's position is an extension of the parent's position, just as society is an extension of the family.

True Education

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
What is the fundamental unit in creating the heavenly kingdom on earth and in heaven? It is the family. In a family, there are grandparents, parents and children. Wherever you go in this world, you can always meet people like your children, like your brothers and sisters, like your parents or your grandparents. It is the official and universal shape of the world.
Then, what is a family? It is a model to follow in shaping the nation and the world. Then what is love in a family? It is the beginning of creating the world and the heavenly nation.
The relationships between parents and children, brothers and sisters, and husband and wife are created with love as their focus. Only because of love do children, brothers and sisters, husbands and wives and parents live in families.
Without love, they would all break apart.
However, what do people on earth want most?
Some people think it is knowledge. You also think knowledge is important. Of course it is. Others think it is money. You need money to build schools.
Yes, we need money. Then, what do people think they should have after they build schools? They would say that their school needs authority.
What kind of authority? The kind of authority with power. Yes, we need all of those.
However, even if we have all the things mentioned above, we cannot have the ideal model to live by for all mankind. It is not money, knowledge or power that harmonizes and unifies children, elderly people, men and women all together. Love alone can do that magic. That is what you must understand.
What are teachers? They are a kind of parent. What are the leaders of a nation?
They are a kind of teacher and parent. The nation's leaders should represent parents, teachers and owners of the nation.
People should be educated in their homes, in their schools and in their nation. Looking at the world, there isn't any nation educating people in that way. The educational system has completely broken apart.
Parents, teachers and nations all have different directions in teaching people. Even within a family, grandparents, parents and children go in all different directions. That is the present reality we live in.

Thus, the child is first embraced and loved by his or her parents, and taught through their example how to behave within the family structure. Then, children bring this knowledge into the larger society, where it is further developed and expanded by various teachers who are each responsible to impart a different aspect of knowledge and to model appropriate behavior in various situations within the larger community. The teacher stands in the position of an extension of the parent, and thus the true relationship between teacher and student is similar to that between parent and child.

School Is the Gate to Society

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
Our teachers' love and guidance serve as a bridge to connect us with the world. The teacher's stamp of approval symbolizes his love.
The teacher is in a position distinct from that of our parents. A parent's declaration, "Our children are great!" doesn't mean much to the rest of the world; whereas a certificate signed by the teacher carries greater weight. School is the first gate of entry into society. We go there to do our best in conforming to our teachers' expectations and through that we experience a love relationship not found within the family.
The love between students and teachers represents that within the community, the greater society and ultimately the world. That is how schooling ought to be: students should be motivated and inspired by the care and concern of their teachers.
Through schooling we should grow in our concern and love for society and the world. This is how beautiful and valuable school life is meant to be.

Education is not limited to the knowledge required to live in one's local community. Children's experiences should be continually expanded so that they are prepared to live as citizens of their country and ultimately of the world.

Reverend Moon states that a world of peace will be realized only when all barriers are broken down.

Thus, education should raise people to live beyond the boundaries of their nations, races, religions, or cultural spheres. Similarly, experts in each field should also be trained to relate to those who are masters in different areas. With this approach, true education will be able to produce citizens of a world of peace.

Education for the World

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
True learning should go beyond national boundaries and even history. From that perspective, all the scholars of the world must come together to educate humanity by overcoming the limitations of national educational systems. We must overcome national limitations and educate not for the sake of America or Britain but for the one, new world, the world of peace we all dream of.
We must have an education system to develop a peaceful world. Unless we develop educational institutions with that goal in mind, we cannot educate people correctly. That is why I want to build a university. That is also why I want to establish a world university federation.

In summary, Reverend Moon's philosophy of education is that the purpose of true education is to teach us to love God, to love humankind, and to love God's ideal nation. In other words, education should teach the highest truth, which means first to teach about God, the creator of the world.

Second, we must learn how to love all people as one family. Third, we must learn to live in the ideal culture in which God's sovereignty has been restored. These goals will be achieved through the practice of true love.

God, Humankind, Ideal Nation

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
Universities are supposed to be places where one learns the highest truth. What is the highest truth? First, you must know about the heavenly world and, most of all, about God who is the center of the heavenly world. Second, you must know about mankind who is the center of that world. Third, you must know how to realize the ideal nation with God and humankind together.
How can we possibly realize such a grand goal? We can conclude that only love is the solution. So I chose the motto of education as "Love God, Love Humankind and Love the Nation (God's ideal nation)." I teach people that true education is to fulfill these goals.

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