True Family Values
Joong Hyun Pak and Andrew Wilson
Chapter 4 - The Universal Family [Part 1]
4. Our family pledges to build the universal family encompassing Heaven and Earth, which is God's ideal of creation, and perfect the world of freedom, peace, unity and happiness, by centering on true love.
Families living in true love will participate in forming the global family of humankind. This should he a natural process for families which dutifully seek the welfare of the whole and live by the four-fold ethic of filial piety, civic virtue, love of humanity and love for God and the cosmos. As we live for the sake of others, our love expands to embrace the universe and the universe in turn embraces us. Rev. Moon says:
I exist for my family, my family exists for our society, our society exists for our nation, our nation exists for the world, all the world exists for God, and God exists for you and me, for all mankind. In this great circle of give and take there is harmony, there is unity, and there is an eternal process of increasing prosperity. Furthermore, since in this circuit all existence will fulfill its purpose of creation, there is abundant and profound joy. This is the Kingdom of Heaven, in which feelings of happiness overflow.1
Philosophers from Plato to Marx have dreamed of a global commonwealth of humankind. However, their social visions were flawed, conceiving of the community as composed of individuals while neglecting the central role of the family. The family which centers on true love, which cultivates living for the sake of others, in fact supplies the key to establishing a global family embracing all humankind.
In God's world there are no barriers separating people by class, race, ethnicity, nationality or religion, for "there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (Gal. 3:28) Jesus came for the sake of the entire world, "for God so loved the world that he gave his only Son." (John 3:16) It was rather his followers who made him instead into a banner for rallying their tribe against other peoples. The Divine Principle teaches, "Christianity should renew the world as the one global family which God purposed from the time of creation." (Eschatology 4.2) The other world religions have similar aspirations. Therefore, we should stop thinking of salvation as only an individual matter. We should not rest content until everyone is saved. In this way we connect with the heart of God, who as our Heavenly Father wants each of His children to enjoy divine life: "As I live, says the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live." (Ezek. 33:11)
The world has entered a new age. Communication is global and instantaneous. We can travel to all parts of the world in a matter of hours. National economies, formerly isolated and self-sufficient, have given way to a global economy in which capital and goods flow rapidly and unimpeded. Our knowledge of foreign cultures has grown to the point where we can no longer pretend that our own cherished beliefs and traditions define the only correct way to think and live. Yet despite material progress towards a global village, ethnic and tribal conflicts have broken out all over the world. Brotherly love must be practiced if the world is to fully realize the planetary consciousness of a global village. As the Divine Principle states:
People on all six continents are crossing the oceans seeking friendship and brotherly love. However, a family can be formed only when there is a father and mother; only then can true brotherly love arise. Only when Christ comes again as the Parent of humanity will all people join together in one great family and live harmoniously in the global village. -Eschatology 4.3
As was previously discussed in connection with the Four Great Realms of Heart, brotherly love is fostered by the love of their parents. Likewise, in the universal family genuine brotherly love blossoms in the love of God and Christ. The love of God the Father has a universal and embracing quality. When immersed in the love of God, your heart goes out to all people without any favoritism. Nevertheless, faith in God alone has not been sufficient to join people of all religions and all races as brothers and sisters. The human Fall also saw the corruption of physical, human love in the family. From that starting-point, the family of humankind fractured into warring clans, tribes and nations. Hence, humankind also needs physical, visible parents to embody God's love and make peace among all God's children. For this reason, God sent Jesus Christ into the world as His incarnation, to reconcile the world with Himself.
Democracy is based upon the ideal of human brotherhood. John Locke and the other 18th century thinkers who laid the philosophical foundations of democracy rejected the medieval model of society as a family under the rule of the king. The king, it had been said, was the nation's benevolent parent, ruling over the people as his children. Locke rejected monarchy as a corrupt institution and denied that any man could stand in the position of parent. Rather, government should be based upon a social contract between citizens as equals, established to maintain the peace and provide for the common defense of the realm. Behind the political theory of democracy lay the Protestant principle which rejected the authority of the papacy in favor of the "priesthood of all believers." All people are equal before God as regards their salvation; in Christ "there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free..." (Gal. 3:28) Consequently, all citizens are equal as in their political rights and duties. All people stand as equals before the law of God; for "the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness." (Rom. 2:15) Likewise, all citizens stand as equals before the nation's laws enshrined in the Constitution.
Respect for the rights of all people and their equality before the law is a fruit of God and Christ's parental love, which shows no partiality. Fraternal love begins from a sense that all the siblings are valued by their parents. Nevertheless, harmonious fraternal love requires much more. In a family, the parents mediate quarrels among their children, embracing both sides and raising them up. They show their children how to appreciate the good points of their siblings. Likewise, Democracy can maintain peace among its political parties only if there are people who think like parents, working for reconciliation, comity and a spirit of solidarity among all citizens. America's Christian foundation once sufficed for this by exalting God as the Father and promoting virtue among the citizenry. In "one nation under God," Americans could find common ground under a sacred canopy of shared morals and beliefs. Virtuous citizens could be counted upon to elect virtuous leaders. Nevertheless, America's Christian faith has not sufficed to end racism. With the decline of Christianity and the loosening of moral standards, greed, partisanship, and corruption have grown, undermining democracy's very foundations.
Rev. Moon proclaims a new social philosophy, called Parentism, which emphasizes the role of society's leaders to act as parents, to embrace and harmonize the quarreling brothers, black and white, right-wing and left-wing. The quality of parental love will imbue social discourse. Leaders with the heart of a parent are not the kings whose tyrannical and oppressive rule was rightly criticized by Locke and other democrats. God's sovereignty has a quality never before seen in this world, because it is centered on true love. In a democracy, the quality of leadership depends on the maturity and virtue of its citizens. When society is peopled by righteous and God-loving families who manifest true parental love, some among them will rise to positions of leadership and become the parents of the nation.
The ideals of freedom, equality, and opportunity will be realized even more perfectly in a society founded on Parentism. In the love of parents, everyone is equal. In the family, loving parents want their children to excel and would be happier still should they surpass them. Parental love even compensates for their children's weaknesses, going out all the more to the sick or handicapped child. Therefore, in a society founded on Parentism, where everyone belongs to God's family, equality will be the rule. External position and rank will count for little compared with one's eternal value as a child of God. Symbolic of this equality is the Unification Church's Pledge Service, where there exists no distinction of wealth or social position. Whether one is a wealthy business leader or a lowly worker, everyone stands as an equal before God.
The Universal Family Encompassing Heaven and Earth
What is the meaning of the words the universal family encompassing heaven and earth (ch'onju dae kajok)? The term family (kajok) in this phrase means literally "clan." A clan extends to cousins and even to more distant relations as long as they feel connected in heart. You can gauge the size of your clan: it includes all the relatives who would want to come to your parent's funeral or your son's wedding. It also includes the family's lineage and ancestry. The universal family (dae kajok) expresses the solidarity of the world's many clans sharing the same bonds of heart for each other.
As a universal cosmic (ch'onju) family, humankind will encompass heaven and earth, the physical world and the spirit world. It will encompass all of nature, to the ends of the physical universe. We recall that the individual family includes house and property as well as the human family members. Likewise, the planet Earth is the home of humankind, the global family. The Earth is our mother, providing sustenance for our physical life. Its animals and plants are all God's creatures, all endowed with life from God. American Indians have long known that animals and plants, too, are clans in the cosmic family, calling them "winged people" (birds), "tall people" (trees), "long people" (rivers) and so on. Human beings have been unfeeling towards their fellow creatures, however, poisoning the air and water with pollution and ravaging mother Earth's forests and marshlands, home to millions of species. Long ago, God entrusted His creation to human beings. We are nature's masters; therefore, we determine the spiritual vibration of our environment and even its physical abundance. Where people are wicked the creation groans:
There is no faithfulness or kindness, there is no knowledge of God in the land; There is swearing, lying, killing, stealing, and committing adultery; they break all bounds and murder follows murder. Therefore the land mourns, and all who dwell in it languish, and also the beasts of the field, and the birds of the air, and even the fish of the sea are taken away. -Hos. 4: 2-3
On the other hand, the Buddha once said, "Whether in village or in forest, in vale or on a hill, wherever devout monks dwell, delightful, indeed is that spot." (Dhammapada 54)2 Thus, the Findhorn community in Scotland is renowned for producing giant-sized vegetables through the power of prayer and meditation. By centering on true love, the universal family will love the Earth and turn it into a garden overflowing with abundance. Meanwhile, the Earth and its creatures wait with expectation as human beings, endowed with free will, struggle through the cosmic drama of restoration. (Rom. 8:19)
The great cosmic family also embraces the spirit world. Every culture relates with it: from aboriginal worship of nature spirits, ancestor veneration in the Orient, the Roman Catholic communion of the saints, to our modern fascination with angels. The spirit world contains all moments of time: past, present and future. It includes all generations: our ancestors, our contemporaries and our descendants. In particular, our earthly life is profoundly influenced by the deposit of lineage and heritage in the spirit world. Wherever we find conflict between races, religions or nationalities, we can be certain that in the background fester hatreds nursed through the generations. When Blacks feel the racism of whites, their feelings are thickened by their ancestors who suffered as slaves. Some Jews feel antipathy against devout Christians because their ancestors suffered centuries of persecution from Christian anti-Semites. People's spiritual background often causes them to project racial or religious hostilities onto others who do not necessarily feel the same way. As in Bosnia, ancient hatreds can suddenly bubble up among formerly peaceable neighbors.
Therefore, to build the universal family, we must deal with the spirit world and resolve the resentments of history. As will be discussed in connection with the fifth pledge, the spirit world left to itself would be nearly static; it changes mainly through progress on the earth plane. In building the universal family, we must meet these spiritual challenges during our earthly life. We should work to redress past wrongs and liberate the hearts of people held captive by the past. Therefore, one should never dismiss a person just because he is difficult to deal with. Instead, we should think that he represents an entire dimension of history and the millions of souls whose life experiences were like his. When we love that person and win his heart, we are at the same time resolving the pain of history and unifying a locale in the vast spirit world.
Every human being is a microcosm of heaven and earth; hence it can be said that each family contains an entire universe. In the Jewish and Muslim scriptures, it is written, "If any man saves alive a single soul, it is as though he had saved the whole world." (Mishnah, Sanh. 4.5)3 Therefore, when we restore a single family, it has the value of restoring the entire universe. Every soul is that precious. The universal family will not be complete until it embraces every family and every family's universe.
We live at the dawn of a new age. Our time is one of transition, when the universal family is being formed out of the Earth's alienated peoples and warring tribes. Eventually, when the universal family is complete, the population of the Earth will move as one, with a planetary consciousness. No longer will humanity's creative energy be sapped by wars and blocked by political disputes and linguistic barriers. It will then be a simple matter to work on a global level and effectively deal with the problems of our environment. International cooperation will permit us to farm the oceans and make the deserts bloom while protecting valuable rain forests and other endangered habitats. The next step will be to reach out to the stars. Even today, visionary scientists have proposed "terraforming" the planet Mars by using giant space mirrors to raise its temperature and melt the polar ice caps to release its abundant water. After a thousand years, they say, space engineering can make Mars fit for human habitation and colonization. The universal family, once established, will expand without limit.
The Cosmos Becomes the Divine Image
The Family Pledge calls the universal family God's ideal of creation. The Divine Principle describes God's purpose of creation as the fulfillment of the three great blessings, quoting Genesis: "Be fruitful and multiply... and have dominion." (Gen. 1:28) This will be the realization of the Kingdom of Heaven:
The three great blessings are fulfilled when the whole creation, including human beings, completes the four position foundation with God as the center. This is the Kingdom of Heaven, where ultimate goodness is realized and God feels the greatest joy. This is, in fact, the very purpose for which God created the universe. -Creation 3.1
Joy arises through resemblance. The Kingdom of Heaven-the universal family encompassing Heaven and Earth-gives God joy because it substantializes God's self, reflecting and manifesting the divine image on a universal scale.
Figure 7: The Fourfold Ideal World
The Family Pledge describes God's ideal of creation as the world of freedom, peace, unity and happiness. These are, in fact, the four characteristics of the global family when it realizes the divine image, as illustrated in Figure 7. First, God created human beings in His image. This means that each of us should have the potential to manifest his or her God-given nature, which is God-like. In particular, each of us should be able to attain the perfection of love, as Jesus said: "Love your enemies... so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and the good .... You, therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect." (Matt. 5:44-48) Human beings can grow to attain this level of spiritual maturity only by fulfilling their responsibility to love in freedom. Freedom is, therefore, an absolute prerequisite to realizing the divine image.
Second, God created human beings as His partners in love. God, who is love (1 John 4:8), embodies harmony and peace in the relationship between the persons of the divine Trinity. The family centered on true love is the image of divine love in human life. When peace and harmony reign in the human family, then it will resemble God. Conversely, when human beings resemble God, then peace and harmony will arise among them. Peace and harmony, therefore, characterize the family which realizes the divine image.
Third, God created human beings to multiply Himself and fill the world with God's children. As the human family expands into the universal family, it horizontally multiplies God's self in the world. Ultimately, the entire planet will be transfigured into the image of God, manifesting beauty, truth and goodness. Multiplication in nature occurs through the intimate give and take of love, when lover and beloved become one. In their unity they produce offspring. Likewise, unity creates the spark which energizes all forms of human creativity and progress. Unity is, therefore, the essence of the divine image.
Finally, God created human beings to find joy in loving them as His partners. God experiences joy when He senses His own nature reflected and expanded in the creation. With the establishment of the universal family, when the entire Earth has been transfigured into the image of God, ecstatic and overpowering joy will arise. The divine image, therefore, is full of joy and happiness. In this way, the universal family will realize the divine image-a world of freedom, peace, unity and happiness.
Freedom is an essential condition for our growth to realize the divine image. Today's democratic world has made freedom its cornerstone. Never before in history have people been so free to follow the religion of their choice, to speak out on any issue, to organize and to act as they please. Yet even in the United States, millions of people are addicted to alcohol and drugs. Millions more are trapped in miserable and even abusive relationships, or slaving away at jobs they hate. They consider themselves victims of circumstance and feel powerless to change their situation. These people are not truly free, even though they live in a free country. In fact, they have come into their predicament because they have not understood the true meaning of freedom.
To begin with, we should distinguish between freedom and license. Human beings are composed of dual characteristics of spirit and flesh and have dual purposes accordingly. The spirit longs to unite with God and become the dwelling-place of the divine nature; it achieves its purpose when the individual lives for the sake of others with true love. The flesh is concerned about food, clothing, shelter, sex and sleep -- the things necessary to its survival, action and reproduction. Both of these purposes are meant to be fulfilled, but in the proper order, with the spirit having priority over the flesh. God intends each person to grow in body to physical maturity and in spirit to spiritual maturity. He then becomes a living embodiment of God's spirit and can accomplish God's will with his body.
Freedom honors both aspects of the human being, for the purpose of attaining both goals of human life. We exercise responsibility to attain these goals by cleaving to our spiritual nature. In other words, we should follow our conscience in all areas of life. Our conscience always guides us to live for others, to serve the whole purpose. Our conscience knows our responsibility to attain perfection of spirit and guides us to fulfill it. Furthermore, since the whole includes the self, living by our conscience will also bring satisfaction for the self. True freedom, therefore, is the freedom to follow one's conscience.
License most commonly means living according to the desires of the flesh. Since the human Fall, the spirit and flesh have become divided and pursue conflicting purposes. St. Paul put it well: "I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do." (Rom. 7:19-23) If we are "captive to the law of sin," as Paul expressed, then we are not free. Taking license enslaves the mind, because the body's desires, by the nature of the physical world, can never be satisfied. We find ourselves on a never-ending treadmill of trying to satisfy the body's desires. Moreover, licentious behavior makes our higher self a captive to sin. Sin drags the poor protesting conscience about, while we act in ways that are harmful to others and even to ourselves. The conscience causes us to suffer pangs of guilt, but as we continue to ignore it, it grows weak and crippled. Eventually, we are left with an aching feeling deep inside, which we can drown in alcohol or smother by the stimulation of fast living, drugs and sex. By that time, its voice has become so muffled that we no longer hear it clearly. This is spiritual death (Rom. 6:23), in this world and the next.
Freedom in the Family Pledge means the liberation of the conscience from captivity to the body's desires. It means liberation from bondage to Satan. Satan, an utterly selfish entity, has been dominating the human spirit and influencing our hearts to be egoistic, thinking only of ourselves and what benefits ourselves. According to the Divine Principle, "the power of Satan is conveyed through evil spirits and is manifest in the activities of earthly people." (Fall 4.2)
Whenever we act upon our fallen nature, we make a common base to relate with evil spirits, and hence with Satan, who makes us selfish all the more. St. Paul once remarked, "you are slaves to the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness." (Rom. 6:16) In our egoism, we have been unconsciously obeying Satan's desire for us, making us slaves of sin and leading us to spiritual death. Furthermore, through our base with Satan, we can be moved even unconsciously to oppose God and His providence. Thus, Satan entered into Judas Iscariot (Luke 22:3), and even into Peter (Matt. 16:23) who had no conscious desire to oppose the Lord. Therefore, we should make continual efforts to separate from Satan by genuine repentance, self-denial and acts of sacrificial love.
Once we have cast off Satan's chains, we should obey our conscience -- which knows God's will -- and live for the sake of others. In this way we, "having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness." (Rom. 6:18) Obeying the conscience and doing what is right requires effort. It may even seem oppressive to one grown used to an irresponsible life of license. If so, it should be accepted as a course of restoration on the way to perfect freedom. St. Paul also said, "Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom." (2 Cor. 3:17) This means that we exercise freedom when we cultivate the divine nature within ourselves. As the voice of the conscience, the God within, grows strong and clear, following it becomes a joy and a delight. We then can affirm with Paul, "The kingdom of God is not food and drink but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit." (Rom. 14:17)
Freedom blossoms when we live for the sake of others in true love. Since true love always expands, living for the sake of others forever increases the scope of our freedom. If our love is only as big as our family, our freedom extends only as far as what helps our family. If we love our country, our sphere of freedom is whatever helps our country. If we love all humanity, our sphere of freedom encompasses the world. Even if one's body has been cast into prison, if one is living for the sake of conscience, he is free. St. Paul, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela were among those who suffered imprisonment for conscience, yet even from prison they transformed society.
Wherever tyranny oppresses, the internal freedom of conscience will sooner or later evoke the cry for freedom in society. Freedom is an inalienable right. It includes both the internal freedoms of faith, thought and conscience, and the external freedoms of speech and the press, freedom to assemble, organize and take economic or political action, freedom to travel and emigrate, and freedom from arbitrary arrest and prosecution without just cause. At various historical junctures, the cry for freedom has led to political revolution. Revolutions and wars will continue as long as states deny these freedoms. (Fall 5.3) In this regard, we can again distinguish between freedom and license: Freedom is worth fighting for, and to die in the fight for freedom is an honorable death. On the other hand, when someone loses his life in the pursuit of bodily pleasure, for example contracting AIDS from a sexually promiscuous lifestyle, overdosing on drugs, or crashing a car at 100 m.p.h. while joyriding down a back road, there is nothing noble about it.
Freedom lies at the heart of all creative possibility. As God's sons and daughters, human beings share His creative nature and His glory as a creator. For this reason, God gave human beings a portion of responsibility that they may co-create their own reality. By co-creating ourselves in freedom, we actually determine our own destiny and the destiny of our world. Many people flee from this awesome freedom, because they do not comprehend the divine love which lies behind it. God looks for those who will commit themselves to the path of a co-creator and take full responsibility for themselves. When He finds them, He pours out His effort to prosper their way. Others, believing themselves to be victims of circumstance, do not realize their incredible power to take control of their lives and their destinies. Yet that stance is also a free choice, and they co-create their own failure.
Consider, for example, the situation of the Israelites when they were wandering in the wilderness. Although they had left Egypt physically, they could not so easily shake off the slave mentality. They had become habituated to the life of slaves where everything was provided for them and were afraid to take risks. This was the main reason why they had difficulty following Moses. Moses was co-creating a new reality with God. By definition, a new creation cannot be seen or felt until after it has been created. While Moses was leading the people through an uncharted wilderness and journeying toward a land he had never seen, he lived by faith alone. He had freed himself from the past, but he also risked everything for the promise of a better future. To follow Moses, the Israelites had to make the same leap into freedom. They had to believe that they could co-create. They had to put their lives on the line, believing in
God's power to make their way successful. But unable to rise above the slave mentality, when the Israelites encountered adversity, they murmured against Moses and said, "Our wives and our little ones will become a prey; would it not be better for us to go back to Egypt?" (Num. 14:3) Joshua, on the other hand, believed that God was inviting him to co-create a new reality. He encouraged his followers, saying, "Do not fear the people of the land, for they are bread for us; their protection is removed from them, and the Lord is with us; do not fear them." (Num. 14:9) Amazingly, each group met the destiny they co-created for themselves: the fearful Israelites perished in the wilderness, while Joshua and his followers entered the promised land in triumph.
God has given us freedom as a gift of love and for our glory. We should use our freedom to stand tall as responsible co-creators who change ourselves and our world. God invites us to join in a powerful partnership, as co-creators with Him. Unlimited power is available, if only we will take advantage of it.
When individuals living in freedom form families in freedom, and these families multiply to fill the Earth, the entire global society will move in freedom. Everyone's individual freedom will be upheld by the whole, which in turn benefits by the sum of all the creative work of its members. Thus, the entire universe will display God's image. This is the world of freedom which characterizes the universal family.
Download entire page and pages related to it in ZIP format
Table of Contents