Sun Myung Moon's Philosophy of Education

Chapter 1 - What Is Education?

1.1 The true meaning of education

How should you raise your children? You should raise them like God, 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. There is nothing more.

There are only those three kinds of love. This is why children love their parents, husbands and wives become one, and parents love their children. The three generations, must be one (076-288, 1975.03.07)

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.

Also, when you go out and work in society, having to sail through heavy wind, you should think that this is for the sake of realizing love and manifesting its true value. (106-139, 1979.12.24)

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. (027-303, 1974.07.14)

Everybody walks the path of learning, and for what purpose? It is in order to proceed to a higher world of goodness and to attain greater value. We know that people pursue this purpose in order to connect with a center of higher dimension, directly or indirectly. (109-264, 1980.11.02)

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. (130-209, 1984.01.22)

Education is necessary for our salvation. Our ancestors fell out of ignorance. Adam and Eve, who were supposed to grow from the Realm of Indirect Dominion to the Realm of Direct Dominion, were ignorant. They were still juveniles. They were growing without understanding the full significance of God's Will. Thus they fell without knowing what the Fall signified. They fell while being in a state of ignorance. Since they fell in ignorance of their original path, successive generations could not surmount that depth of ignorance. This is why we must proceed to lead mankind out of that ignorance. (136-198, 1985.12.29)

Education needs to be strengthened all the time. This is why I have always invested in education no matter what opposition or difficulties came my way. Whenever I had the money, I would put it into education.

Even now we provide public education through our Victory Over Communism (VOC) activities. We provide instruction, thus strengthening the resolve of those who attend and thereby raising them to a higher dimension in their thinking.

As such, you should not cause harm in any way. Wherever you go, there must be progress and no retreat. Retreat does not reinforce education.

In daily encounters with people, you should encourage and empower them.

You should influence them every day. Through this, you motivate them to resolve to bring good results tomorrow. This is how education is strengthened.

Education is not just teaching with books from a podium. Every single word and deed of yours is education. It is also the case with women's clothing. Though you may not be well dressed, what you wear is a reflection of your character, our body being a reflection of our mind.

When our entire life is connected with the realm of education, it can stimulate everybody. The strengthening of education in our own life is the beginning of social development and the source of new hope for the world. (144-177, 1986.04.24)

What you should concern yourself with is not money or power. The problem is people - how to educate them and who can raise them well. This will determine whether a country can be saved by its organizations or by its citizens. (147-013, 1986.08.20)

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. Parents should be able to say, "Do such and such things because your parents have done the same." Parents do not tell their children to steal. Rather, they will say, "You work for the sake of others, heaven and earth, and humankind." This is the heavenly way. (151-244, 1963.01.06)

At school, people receive education from childhood until they enter society as adults. Universities educate them through their undergraduate and post-graduate programs until they enter society; and in society, it is the media that educate them. This jeopardizes everything. The media do all kinds of things to maximize their profits. You should take pride in being able to influence the social morality of the world. (270-287, 1995.07.16)

1.2 True teacher, true education

Moving with God as the center, we need everyone - babies, adults, sons, and daughters. We need everyone centered on one tribe. That world requires every type of person, including even criminals in prison and people on their deathbed. Hence, you should say, "I will love myself only after having loved mankind and the nation." This is the way to Heaven. You should love your family only after having loved mankind.

This is the tradition in which you should be educated. (021-121, 1968.11.17)

Koreans know very well how to face death because they have been educated on this. Guiding people toward a successful conclusion of their lives is the core of moral education. (025-158, 1969.10.03)

If you were to ask the sages and patriots of old and the filial children whether they know true parents and true children, they would say no. No matter whom you asked among the three billion members of humankind, nobody would know. If you could teach this, it would be the highest education one could receive. If you taught this from dawn to dusk, even God would start to concern Himself with it. This is the only education that can connect us to God.

Thus, the one who teaches the ties between true parents and true children can be the greatest teacher in heaven and earth. That teacher can be an object of historical admiration transcending time and space, and will surely be the guide of mankind. (026-040, 1969.10.18)

Goodness is not realized instantly. If you want to be a good person, you have to inherit the past. This is why we need education. You should learn at school. What do you learn? Throughout history, those who have sacrificed to pave the way for goodness did not have an easy life. We should inherit the historical spirit of those who have sacrificed. (050-099, 1971.11.06)

"Love a grandmother from another race as your own." This is the highest education in the human world. You should know this. Even God cannot teach anything higher. The conclusion is that no matter what kind of saints come, they cannot teach anything higher. Even God and the saints have no higher teaching. (089-158, 1976.11.07)

The upright leader says, "When you die, die for the sake of love." What is the greatest education of all? It is this teaching: "When you die, die for the sake of love." You should know this. You should know that this education is greater than getting ten doctorates from Harvard University.

What is our Unification Church seeking to do? We are saying, "Let us die for the highest love. Let us die for the sake of God, humanity, and the world." We should teach, "Men and women, and everything else in the universe started out from love." You should know that when we teach this, there is no education that is higher than it. There is no higher education! When you realize this and live your life in appreciation of God's love, then you shall be glorious and unashamed when you go before the throne of God. (093-189, 1977.05.29)

To love a family that can directly connect to the life force of love is the way of the filial child; to love based on the life force of the nation is the way of the patriot; and to proceed by connecting love with the life energy of the world is the way of the saint. It is clear that ethics have been taught in such directions. You should know that this was right. You should know that to love the world is the way of the saint. This has been the standard of education of ethics. We can see here that this was right. (111-173, 1981.02.15)

Today, school problems are emerging as an urgent social issue in America, Japan, and the whole world. Teachers should educate their students with parental love. They should teach with love that is eternal. Their ties should last beyond their schooldays. Teachers should be unable to forget about their students for the rest of their lives.

They should strive to forge such ties of love. Those who connect all their knowledge with love are true teachers. Rather than teaching just to earn a living, they should teach out of an irrepressible love and desire to teach, even at great personal cost. Teachers and students should have such a relationship that, night or day, the teachers long to go to them and convey their knowledge eternally with love, and the students are eager to receive that teaching. (127-016, 1983.05.01)

Professors should teach with strong determination and clear values in this age. In this sense, they share common ground with religious leaders. They should not only transmit knowledge and make known the results of their investigations, but also teach about living a life of responsibility. (130-015, 1983.12.18)

Teachers are not just people who give instruction in schools. They ought to set the standard and example for everything with respect to human affairs. They should be the center. (194-072, 1989.10.17)

There are many teachers here, right? Have you protected your schools as you would your own houses, and taught your students as you would your own children, with the heart of fathers and mothers? If not, you are fakes. The same is true for brothers and sisters. You should have the minds and hearts of mothers and fathers. Since parents have loved their children in this way, the latter should follow the same way if they truly love their parents. It's the same theory. To be a true elder brother, you should invest in your younger brother more than you invest in yourself. If the ideal foundation and basic values harmonized through such principles are established in the universe, there will be no accusations or conspiracies. Corruption will be utterly wiped out. Then the logic of feuds between villages and of historical conflicts will no longer apply. (209-306, 1990.06.27)

What does this society and country need in relation to true love? There are three requirements. First, we need parents. What is the next? We need teachers and education. Then what comes next? We need owners.

Teachers should be possessed of three hearts. First, the heart of parents; then, the heart of raising people to whom they can entrust their families eventually as their heirs; lastly, the heart of raising people who can be entrusted with the nation. Only then will the family, nation or any entity prosper. It's the same in the Kingdom of Heaven.

Isn't this true in the case of the nation? The president is in the position of the parent, and the educators are the position of the teacher. What about companies or administrative offices? They have the relationship of owners and workers. Companies have owners, don't they?

This declining, chaotic world will survive if at least one of them appears. If we meet a true owner, we can naturally meet a true teacher and true parent. We just have to meet one. If there is a true teacher, a true parent and true owner are there as well. Why? It is because God is such a person. (203-360, 1990.06.28)

True teachers teach with the heart of a true parent, in place of the mother. True parents do not just give birth. They also have to raise and educate the children so that they can become heirs and owners in the family. (204-045, 1990.06.29)


God is a true parent, a true teacher and a true king. However, He cannot play these roles directly on earth. Hence, we are called upon to provide true education in the place of God and True Parents. We must love in the position of the parents.

If some students are unable to pay for their tuition, we must support them. The school has to support them, through fundraising or other means. If the school cannot help, the parents and teachers of the class should get together to support their education. Those who put their families first will perish. They won't be able to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. (301-093, 1999.04.16)

1.3 The purpose and standard of education Our past history was more glorious than the present one. We should educate in this way: this and that caused Korea's downfall, whereas America flourished for this and that reason. This can be a standard for teaching history in the future. It can be established as a standard to bring the age into order. You must stand in such a position. (021-307, 1968.12.08)

According to the standard of education and morality, we should live for the purpose of the whole rather than that of the individual. Since we should live for the whole rather than for the self, people must live for the public good. (024-211, 1969.08.17)

If parents educate their children with the patriotic heart that says, "I am loving, toiling and shedding sweat for you because I want you to love this country rather than to think about me," their children will strive to become the patriots of their parents' desire. Whenever they recall the love of their parents, they will think about their nation. They will study with the heart of wanting to serve the nation, and when the nation suffers tragedy, they will be stricken with sorrow more than their parents. One does not become a patriot by just standing in such a position. A foundation must be laid from that position. Only then will you earn admiration of the nation for tens of thousands of years.

Otherwise, everything will pass away. It's serious if we think about all these things. (025-097, 1969.09.30)

Has your family become a global family? If so, your story will spread through the village and everyone will want to ask how you can live this way. They will want to follow you and be educated by you. All of you should become champion families and win the recognition of the people of the world. (029-077, 1970.02.24)

When brothers fight in a family, whom do the parents side with? No parent will side with the one who hit first, fighting for his own selfish purpose. The standard of education and morality throughout history has been based on being good. (031-235, 1970.06.04)

Everyone, no matter who they are, has the desire to sacrifice for a higher being and become a patriot. Patriotism does not arise instantly, but originates from the family and the character of the individual. In other words, it flows from character, heart and education through family life. Through social activities, one advances to the place of influencing the country. It is through these foundations that you should stand in the position to be needed by your country. Otherwise, you may end up becoming a corrupt official. (034-019, 1970.08.29)

There have been many heroes in history. Suppose someone has conquered the world: if he proceeded from an individual desire rather than wanting to suffer in God's position, he would be criticized in history, despite his suffering. His path would be blocked in all directions. This will be a textbook teaching us to eschew and oppose evil. Suffering in the position of goodness is different. If we stand in the position recognized by the conscience of all people, they will try to establish it as the center of history and world ideals through the rule of the heavenly purpose or through social cooperation. This cannot be denied when we examine it by the operation of our conscience. The Unification Church has developed so far through paths of suffering. (035-196, 1970.10.14)

We do not simply turn into patriots, but first receive education from our parents, strongly imprinting love for our nation into our hearts.

Thence, we go on to make our own decisions and set goals for our lives.

Our motivation to love our nation does not come from ourselves.

You do not suddenly change into a patriot one fine day. You either receive very special training from your ancestors, or your conscience moves you from the depth of your heart and shakes your entire soul to become a patriot. This is what you need to understand. (035-324, 1970.11.01)

People, no matter how evil they are, would not tell their children, "I was a robber and a murderer, so you should follow my footsteps." No such parents exist. However evil they may be, they will not teach their children to be like that. When parents say to their children, "At least you shouldn't be bad," it implies that they themselves were bad; or "At least you should do well." That means they themselves didn't do well.

It is good to invest everything completely for the children. That's how you can leave a legacy behind. That is the principle of education for both old and young alike. That legacy should be expanded to the society and to the world.

Don't you think so? If parents act like that, no one will say they are bad. A while ago, I heard of some parents who left their children in an orphanage to travel around the world. That's why children become bad. If the parents are always with their children, they will not become bad.

That's how the world works. If you just praised people repeatedly, they wouldn't like it. Of course they wouldn't like it either if you criticized them. However, if you accept and praise what they do wrong, they are happy. Don't you agree? There is no other way. You have to praise the things they didn't do right. That's the only way you can deal with immature children. Children are self-centered. When they see good things, they want to have them right away. That's why they need education. (036-073, 1970.11.15)

This is the age of ideological warfare between mind and body, between spiritual values and materialistic values. Whose ideas are superior?

That's the point. History has been the process of restoring and recreating man whom God lost. God is thinking, "If people want to strive for material success, well, let them. They will ultimately serve as negative examples of what not to do. Go ahead, give it a shot." That's how God feels. Whoever is so cocksure of their intellectual prowess should just proceed and see where it's going to lead them. In the end, their story will simply furnish yet more education material for God to raise His true sons and daughters. We should produce an instruction manual in becoming God's true sons and daughters. (060-074, 1972.08.06)

I was often very lonely in prison. I cannot forget those who visited me in such a miserable plight. I might forget about my family members or relatives, but never those who sought me because of the bonds of true love. I dare say that enemies aren't always that bad. I used my experiences to learn the most precious lessons from even the worst possible circumstances.

I would want to visit any of our members in the army or in prison, and even if I couldn't, you should leave such a legacy behind. In that way, you can teach people how to be a living example and textbook. The last words of those who can bequeath such a legacy to their descendants are: "You should be like me." (063-205, 1972.10.14)

No one likes prison life, but it can teach you to appreciate the little things more. Prison is the best place for you to learn to appreciate the little things in life. That is the best education. I'm telling you that it is not an entirely terrible thing to be in prison.

If I talk about it, I will never stop. Even a single fly can be the object of your love. "If you could speak, I would send greetings to my hometown." You could make friends with even a fly. Nobody likes flies, but they can become your bosom friends in prison. Prison is the only place where you can receive such precious education. My point is that going to prison wasn't just a negative experience I had in my life.

I think that young people should undergo some special training by spending some time in prison as part of their education program for about a year and a half. If ever I became the education minister or had the opportunity to govern a nation as I wished, that is what I would want to do. I really mean that. (063-219, 1972.10.14)

Even if you don't actually spend time in prison, you should at least go through a training period similar to that. That is the unificationist style of education and training. (063-233, 1972.10.14)

Education and ethics are centered on goodness as the standard. It is not very easy to live by the standard of goodness. It is a suffering course.

Our physical desires essentially go against walking the path of righteousness, but if we do not walk it, we cannot come to a good end.

That is the very thing we learn in society.

"All people desire goodness. Before you can love God, you must love all mankind. You should love others and live for their sake. You were born for that purpose." This is the education you need to receive. You were not born to live for yourselves. If you were, you could not restore the archangel. He did not live for the sake of others, but instead led them to fall. If we live only for ourselves, there is no way we can indemnify that. (064-018, 1972.10.22)

We know that those who sacrifice their lives out of the goodness of their heart are doing the right thing. Though people may not understand things concretely, they still set goodness as the goal of education....

The basic teaching we now have is to do good and give to the poor. (065-117, 1972.11.05)

We need textbooks to educate people. If we want to teach people on behalf of the nation, we need textbooks representing the nation. Where can we gather materials for the textbooks? We can get them from the leaders and people of the nation. For Koreans, we should have textbooks teaching the workings of the Korean government and nation. To educate the world, we need a textbook with the content for restoring the world.

How can we produce such a textbook? We would gather the materials concerning those who sacrificed the most for their nation. The people mentioned in the textbook would necessarily be those who led by their example to become the pride of their nation. Without goodness, there is nothing to be proud of. If Koreans want to become the pride of the world, they must suffer the most even to the point of death. Is my teaching only for the sake of Korea or is it for the sake of the entire world. Your fervent sacrifice should be offered on the worldwide level. (065-216, 1972.11.19)

Today's standard of ethics and morality is that goodness sacrifices itself for the sake of others while evil sacrifices others for itself.

This criterion is the central point of our education. (102-234, 1979.01.01)

What kind of God do we have? Does He say, "I am God Almighty! I created you, My children, to glorify and serve me. Love me and sacrifice everything for My own sake!" If God were like that, how would you react?

God is not that kind of God. In fact, He is the opposite, having set the tradition of humbly serving and loving the world. His tradition is that of changing diapers, enduring pungent odors and caring for our bodily functions. God has done nothing but serve and sacrifice and asks us to follow in His tradition. That should form the core of our textbook. (116-089, 1981.12.20)

White Americans tried to give their children the best possible education, to send them to Ivy League universities such as Harvard so they could receive prestigious degrees, and so on. However, once they joined the Unification Church, they started selling flowers. We train them to be true men and women, teaching them to assimilate even the persecution of ten million people. It is all part of the training: receiving all kinds of insults, being spat upon in public. Some people kicked our members and someone burned one of our sisters with a cigarette butt. We really underwent great suffering. You will read all kinds of stories in the history of the Unification Church. You must know that history. (138-280, 1986.01.24)

What educational material will God use in teaching people the realization of peace on earth? He will use love. Love being invisible, He will find a man and a woman who embody love. That is inevitable. Yet, how can we educate a man to love his wife more than himself? That is the question. How can we find the starting point for unification and peace?

That is the question. Love alone has the power to make unification and peace possible. How can we logically teach people to deny themselves and care more for others? (193-153, 1989.10.03)

Centering on Adam and Eve, there should be education materials for children on parental, conjugal, fraternal and filial relationships, and on how to raise families, clans and tribes. Centering on the family foundation, everything from the formation stage, through the growth stage, all the way up to the completion stage will be perfected. Now, Rev. Moon's educational material on the Ideal Family in Heaven and on Earth can be made available to be included among the resources of the White House library or those of any other library of the world. (233-335, 1992.08.02)

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