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 2 of 5]

2. Goals Of Education

As noted previously, the goal of education is not merely to impart knowledge; rather, it is to develop the whole person so that they come to fully realize their own potential as a human being. As Reverend Moon explains, we were created as children of God, and therefore our purpose is to resemble God, our parent. Thus, education is ultimately to teach people to resemble God.

Education to Resemble God

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
How should you raise your children? You should raise them to have beauty and excellence, as God did when He created Adam and Eve. This is the standard of education.
What is the person like who resembles God?
He or she would not be someone with a big face, great life force and power like God. For this, you just have to be a complete person and learn to love like God. We desire to resemble God and, to do this, we must stand in the position of having loved like God.
Then, what is God's love? If you analyze it, it is manifested through parental love, conjugal love, and filial love. This is why children love their parents, husbands and wives become one, and parents love their children. The three generations must be one.

Education has three main aspects:

the development of mature character
learning to build ethical and loving relationships
acquiring knowledge and skills

Reverend Moon's teachings provide a framework for the accomplishment of each of these three goals.

Although there is an order to the three types of education, such that each builds upon the accomplishments in the previous areas, the completion of each type of education is not a linear progression but can be better understood as the integration of concentric circles.

One completes the development of mature character while creating healthy relationships through family, school and community, and by developing mastery of knowledge and skills. However, as we shall see, failure to make good progress toward either of the first goals limits and distorts accomplishment of mastery and one's ability to make a creative contribution to the society as a whole.

Goodness Is the Purpose of Education

From Gathering for Reading and Learning Series, Volume 5: Raising Children in God's Will, Washington DC: FFWPUI, 1998.
People everywhere want to be good and hope to be good. Don't our teachers stand behind the podium and teach, saying to their pupils, "You must become good Koreans in the future"? In the same way, we teach students in middle school, high school, and college to be good people as the purpose of education. There are absolutely no good persons who live for their individual self.

A. Mature Character

A person of good character is one who practices goodness. Actually, all people desire to be good and want their children to grow up to be good people.

Although every person has an inherent potential to develop a good character, it cannot be realized automatically by instinct. It needs to be nurtured and cultivated through experience and with much effort. Becoming a person of good character is a developmental process that requires knowledge and experience of the heart of God. This is achieved through receiving love from parents and others, and by being educated about God's heart toward humankind.

Thus, mature persons are those who, with a sincere heart, love others and live for the sake of others. They exhibit self-control and resist the temptation to follow selfish impulses, in order to consistently practice living for others.

Their words and deeds are one. People of mature character live according to their values and make them into personal virtues. Both parents and teachers carry the responsibility of being moral exemplars.

Cultivation of heart is thus the first dimension of education, bearing fruit in mature character. It is also the foundation for attaining the other two dimensions of education.

Perfection of Individual Character

From "Declaring the Era of the Peace Kingdom," Address to the United States Congress, The United States Capitol, Washington DC, March 23, 2004.
First, each member of the family needs to complete his or her individual character. In other words, each person must be victorious in the struggle between mind and body.
Then the world of harmony will bear fruit in each individual's perfected character, a state of one heart, one mind and one thought.

B. Loving Relationships and Family

The second type of education concentrates on helping people develop the capacity for ethical and loving relationships. Love cannot be separated from ethics, because ethics concerns the way to properly relate with others.

Building upon the first goal, mature character with the capacity for true love, a person learns to observe the standards and proper rules for good relationships. The loving and harmonious family is both the goal and the central context of ethical training and practice.

The Family Is the Textbook

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
What is the system of an ideal world? Its basic unit is the family. The family is the base of the heavenly kingdom, and the cornerstone for building the heavenly kingdom. No matter how large the population of citizens is, a person who confronts his nation with a love that extends beyond the family can travel freely in the heavenly kingdom.
You must have a mind like such a person, to receive education at home as in the textbook. The grandparents, parents and children live in the family. If these are extended to the world, there will be people in the same age groups as the grandparents, parents and children. Hence, a person who has experienced love in his family, as in the textbook, faces no hindrances anywhere in the world. He is qualified since he has lived according to the book.
The family is therefore the elementary textbook. If you live as taught in the family, there won't be any international borders or any other types of obstacles blocking you.

Loving others encompasses norms, which are the standards of behavior within the social context of family, school and community.

Norms, or the ideals of proper behavior, govern relationships. They provide the guidelines for living in harmony with others and showing proper respect towards them.

How are we to learn the norms of human relationships that will allow us to have a culture of peace? Reverend Moon explains that the bases for all social relationships are found in the family. In fact, the family can be understood as the training ground or "textbook" for building proper loving relationships.

The Four Great Realms of Heart

From "Declaring the Era of the Peace Kingdom," Address to the United States Congress, The United States Capitol, Washington DC, March 23, 2004.
What do I mean, then, by the "four great realms of heart"? I refer to the perfection of the heart of parents, the heart between husband and wife, the heart of children, and the heart of siblings. This is found in a true family bound by God's original true love, true life and true lineage through a chaste three-generational lineage of grandparents, parents and (grand)children.
Here, the love between parents and children establishes the vertical relationship between upper and lower, the love between the husband and wife establishes the horizontal relationship that brings left and right into definitive oneness, and the love between siblings establishes the relationship between front and back. In this way, God's ideal of creation is no longer a mere concept or dream.

There are four basic types of relationship in the family, corresponding to the four realms of heart: parental realm, conjugal realm, children's realm and siblings' realm. These are explained in greater detail in volume 2 of this series, "The Family as the School of Love and the Foundation of a Peaceful Society." What follows is a summary of the key points.

1. The Realm of Parental Heart

Parental love resembles the love of God, who loves humankind unconditionally, sacrificially, unchangeably and eternally. The parental heart wants to give everything to the child. Without the experience of being a parent, it is impossible to understand the joy that comes from sacrificing yourself for another.

Becoming a parent is one of the most transforming experiences of life. The period of pregnancy gives the husband and wife time to prepare for this transition. But success in this realm depends on having established a harmonious conjugal relationship as a married couple.

The Realm of Parental Heart

From "Declaring the Era of the Peace Kingdom," Address to the United States Congress, The United States Capitol, Washington DC, March 23, 2004.
The realm of parental heart is acquired naturally as parents go through the process of bearing children and then raising and educating them with true love. In other words, it is the heart that enables the parents to own true love with respect to the children. Without children, no one can own love as a parent.

2. The Realm of Conjugal Heart

Reverend Moon's teachings and activities ultimately rest on the crucial relationship between man and woman. The love between husband and wife reflects the harmonious existence of masculinity and femininity, or positivity and negativity, in God. This special relationship, which includes the ability to create new life, should therefore reflect God's nature.

The conjugal realm of heart is not one to be entered lightly, for it is unique and eternal.

In other words, it is an exclusive relationship between one particular man and one particular woman, with no infidelity and no divorce. The benefits of achieving success in this realm are boundless. Not only do husband and wife experience enduring love with each other, but they also share true love with their children for eternity.

The Realm of Conjugal Heart

From "Declaring the Era of the Peace Kingdom," Address to the United States Congress, The United States Capitol, Washington DC, March 23, 2004.
Next, the realm of conjugal heart is the love relationship that extends true lineage. In this, husband and wife each are grateful for the other having established them as the owner of love, and each learns true love through giving and receiving with the other.
They enjoy learning of true love when the husband lives for the sake of the wife, even if it means sacrificing his own life, and the wife attends her husband with the heart of attending God. The perfection of the husband-wife relationship is possible only on this basis.
The moment a bride and groom share love on their wedding night with God's blessing, they inherit the palace of true love, the palace of true life and the palace of true lineage. The wife, through her husband, receives God's ideal son, who is also Heaven's older brother, Heaven's husband and Heaven's parent.
The husband stands in the corresponding position in receiving his wife. When the realm of conjugal heart is perfected, the relationship between the husband and wife also becomes absolute, unique, unchanging and eternal, because God is absolute, unique, unchanging and eternal.
So the term "divorce" cannot even exist. Theirs will be a life of happiness, filled only with the blossoms of mutual respect and love.

3. The Realm of the Heart of Children

The first relationship we experience is with our parents. From infancy we naturally receive love from our parents and respond to them, learning from them. In this vertical relationship, we respect and attend our parents who represent God, our original parent.

Children who receive love from parents who love each other develop the ability to love and serve others. In this way they naturally form good character.

The Realm of the Heart of Children

From "Declaring the Era of the Peace Kingdom," Address to the United States Congress, The United States Capitol, Washington DC, March 23, 2004.
Next, how can we describe the heart of children, and how is it obtained? The parents are the center, in God's position in the family, and it is impossible for a child to be born without parents.
For these reasons, the relationship between parent and child is established not by human morality but by a heavenly morality. Thus the parent-child relationship is a vertical relationship, not horizontal. It is not a relationship of destiny, which means that human effort can change it, but it is a relationship of absolute and eternal fate.
Children experience and learn the heart of true love as they attend their parents in daily life, placing their parents in a position higher than themselves. Through a natural process, they come to understand that the love, life and lineage that they inherit from their parents originate in God.
Children who watch and learn from their parents in this way will grow up to become husbands and wives who have no fallen nature, and ultimately they will obtain the position of true parents themselves.

4. The Realm of the Heart of Siblings

The relationships between siblings in today's families are often strained, filled with jealousy and resentment, much like that of the first brothers, Cain and Abel. Reverend Moon explains that in a family where parents love each other with true conjugal love and give unconditional parental love to their children, the children develop deep bonds of love for each other.

Older siblings take on some of the parental responsibility of caring for their younger siblings, who in turn respect and learn from their older siblings. Such relationships can then be extended into the larger family and community of friends and neighbors, providing the foundation for harmony in society as a whole.

The Realm of the Heart of Siblings

From "Declaring the Era of the Peace Kingdom," Address to the United States Congress, The United States Capitol, Washington DC, March 23, 2004.
Lastly, the realm of the heart of siblings arises through brothers and sisters who live as a family in attendance to the same true parents.
I said earlier that the heart between brothers and sisters establishes the relationship between front and back. True parents are a husband and wife living in truth, and children who attend such parents will naturally learn the discipline in heavenly morality and ethics among siblings.
It will be a beautiful sight where a younger brother attends and reveres his older brother as he would his father, and the older brother looks after the younger brother with a loving heart. The older brother represents "front" and the younger brother represents "back." The older brother represents the father, while the younger brother represents the mother.
The perfection of the realm of heart between siblings is the foundation for all people to live for the sake of others through love and service.

Knowledge and Skills Are Not the End

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
Originally, education does not just mean science. Science must be taught, but it is not the most important thing. Education should serve to create a person.

C. Mastery of Knowledge and Skills

This dimension of education involves academic education, the acquisition of knowledge in subjects such as the natural and social sciences, history, mathematics and literature. It also includes technical education in practical fields such as engineering, medicine, law and computer technology. Finally, it involves education in the arts and physical education. The goal of this form of education is to develop one's creativity, reflecting God's creative nature.

Although all people are naturally endowed with creativity as a potentiality, education is required to be able to manifest it. In order to be creative one must gain knowledge, master techniques and develop physical abilities.

Balanced Education

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
The family is the most significant school of love. Through the education in love and heart that parents can give their children within the sphere of the family, their hearts grow in depth and breadth.
The family is the foundation stone for building the character of our children and the school for teaching them love and virtue. Receiving education on the intellectual, physical and technical aspects on the foundation of emotional and normative education is the heavenly way.

Ultimately, education for mastery of knowledge and skills is not an end in itself, but promotes the greater purpose of rising up productive citizens who fulfill their individual potential and who can make a contribution to their society and the world beyond.

As people develop their knowledge, skills and technical expertise, they have the potential to be of enormous benefit to the larger society -- if only they have upright character and proper relationships with their family, community and co-workers.

On the foundation of good character and guided by a loving heart, we can balance our desire for personal success with the larger purpose of bringing benefit to others. In this way, our work and creativity can have value to the society and world.

Integrate Character and Technical Education

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
So far, there has not been any education of character, but only technical education.
Materialistic, technical education totally removed all contents related to human values and God's nature. However, it must link itself to a technology that can pattern after God's model of creation, centering on God's ideal of creation. If not, the result will be the denial of God.
Considering this issue in general, character education and then religious education has to be included in the curriculum. Looking at literature, philosophy and technology, character education is based on a materialistic perspective. They say that the material precedes the spiritual. Philosophy and character education have to become one and be connected to technical education and the scientific world.
The question is how to integrate them.

D. Balanced Education

It should be remembered that the true goal of education, raising children to resemble God, is accomplished through a balance of the three types of education just described. In particular, mastery comes on the foundation of education of character and loving relationships.

Reverend Moon warns that only technical education, based on materialism and without the foundation of character education, has denied God. The result is a society of people who have spent many years being educated but who are not in touch with God's heart, who are ignorant of and unable to maintain proper relationships within their families and in society as a whole, and who abuse their knowledge to cause destruction rather than creatively contributing to our world. Balanced education based on God's heart is necessary for the successful establishment of a culture of peace.

Education about Love Is Done at Home

From Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education, Seoul, Korea: Sunghwa Publishing Company, 2002.
God is the true parent, true teacher and true owner of all humanity. Your family traditions have to begin in Heaven. As you are taking over God's position in becoming a parent, you have to teach the duty of love.
You have to be a teacher who educates on a family of love, on the ideal of a nation, and you have to nurture people qualified to be owners. Schools have been implementing technical education. Education on the true nature of man has to be carried out at home.

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