The Words of Sun Myung Moon from 1965
These questions and answers have been transcribed from tapes made during our Leader's sessions with members and guests at Centers throughout the United States during his trip in March and April 1965.
Question: Do science and religion conflict in regard to the time lapse of the creation and the historical records?
Answer: No historical record goes back more than 4,000 years. So there is conflict between historians and anthropologists or archaeologists.
Question: Is creation only 6,000 years old? Scientists say it is much older.
Answer: I do not necessarily think that Adam lived 6,000 years ago. The time between Adam and Abraham is considered as the prehistoric age. At that time, according to the Bible, people lived 800 or 900 years. We don't know if they had the same kind of calendar we have today. Nine hundred years in their time might not be 900 years by our way of measuring time. As it says in the Bible, one day is like a thousand years and a thousand years as one day. Often things revealed by God are not literally true, but symbolical.
Question: If the prehistoric age (prior to Abraham) is to be taken as revelation, then how can we base our explanation of the history of resurrection on a literal interpretation of that part of history? We say it is 10 generations from Adam to Noah, 10 generations from Noah to Abraham, and so on.
Answer: The 10 generations are not necessarily literal. God may choose one person out of 10 million to accomplish a certain mission. He will count that person as one generation. Adam was the first generation; Jesus was the second generation; and the Lord of the Second Advent is the third generation.
There have been two forerunners to our Leader. They were both elders in the Christian church. Both did great work, but neither followed him. Spiritually gifted people sometimes receive that Mr. Na was the first generation and Mr. Pak was the second generation and that our Leader is the third generation. They are not related at all.
We should count the generations from Adam to Noah and Noah to Abraham just as we count Adam, Jesus and the Second Messiah.
Question: We get into difficulties with this, in that we have made such a point of these numbers. If we suddenly say they are not to be taken literally we might well get the answer, "Then why should we take the days of the flood, or the fall itself literally?"
Answer: Not all people who lived between the times of Adam and Noah are considered, but only those selected people. Noah's account should be taken literally. God's providence or dispensation with Noah was carried on by that individual. Therefore, the events in his lifetime must be literally taken. Only the time element is not to be taken literally. The existence of Noah and of Adam as individual human beings is factual.
Pray about this matter and try to get answers yourself. Some explanation of this may be given in the new book which will help those you teach to understand better.
[Gordon Ross:] -- I have found it helpful to think of these periods in terms of cycles rather than years. What we are comparing in the three dispensations are cycles of time rather than actual years. In nature, cycles of time are erratic. You may have the blooming of a certain flower on a yearly cycle, but one year it may occur in February, the next in April. The time is not exactly the same, but the cycle of time is the same. You can say that the winter season starts at a certain time, but it varies from year to year. This is also true of the human cycle, body functions, and so on. This perhaps is one way to help people understand our teachings.
Question: The question of time is not the thing that bothers me most. It is the question of taking the Bible as literal in regard particularly to evolution. Did man come into existence suddenly, while the rest of creation was the product of evolution? Or did man gradually evolve?
Answer: Grass didn't take long to grow. Bees didn't take long to grow. They took originally just as long as they take today. If you sow a seed this year, it will grow and become a young tree next year.
Question: The theory of evolution, which may or may not be right, says that life started out as a single cell and continues to multi-celled organisms. This is not true?
Answer: Man is made of animal essence, vegetable essence and mineral essence. Suppose you have prepared all the material necessary to build a house. It doesn't take long to build the house itself. To collect the material may take time, but once you have the materials the building itself doesn't take much time. Likewise, the animal, vegetable, and mineral kingdoms were all created over perhaps millions of years. All the materials were there. Out of those essences, it wouldn't take long to create a man,
Question: Did Adam and Eve have earthly, physical parents?
Answer: No! The source of creation is energy. You don't need physical parents to be created. Adam was a special creation.
Question: First we had plant life. Then we had the fish, the water-dwelling creatures. The essence of animal life came from the water, didn't it? Then we went into the amphibious beings. These were orders of creation. There was a similarity, but a marked difference between them. Then we go up to the vertebrates. Then to the big dinosaurs, but all these orders are gone. There are some similarities which follow through into creation as we know it today. There are some freaks that come forward, like the turtle, the duck billed platypus, etc. But then came the primates, the apes. Then the cave-man, the Neanderthals. But they have passed on, too. We don't find them around. You said the material was there. If you don't have the material, you have to go out and make bricks and saw lumber, and it will take a long time to build your house. But if you have the various orders of creation, and meantime these orders have been having give and take with the mineral and plant kingdoms and have been building up the earth in preparation for the environment for man, finally everything is ready, and God says, "Now I can make the highest order of creation -- man."
[Gordon Ross:] Our Leader said before that the evolutionary theory is true. There was a motive and purpose for every change, but Darwin saw only the result and not the cause. He said that evolution exists within the family. Everything is built upon the essence of what went before, rather than as a gradual evolution. A tiger does not result from a tree. But different kinds of trees result within the tree family, and different kinds of cats result within the cat family. So there is no missing link. Man is a family which began with Adam, since then, different kinds of evolution of men have existed.
Question: Were Adam and Eve created from other animal-like humans?
Answer: Have you ever wondered how a plant came into being? Where did the seed come from? In the small seed is every potential of the big tree. Likewise, in God's energy and power itself is all the potential of man. A baby is born through the strong love of its father and mother. God's strong love, His energy, created the baby. Eve was not created out of Adam's rib, but was created after Adam and after Adam's pattern.
Question: Were Adam and Eve born of God as we understand birth? That is, physiologically?
Answer: Through the power of God, Adam and Eve were created as a baby is created by humans today. Man was a special creation.
Question: Archaeologists are coming up with the bones of humans considered to be many millions of years old. How does this relate to Adam and Eve being created all at once.
Answer: On the whole, the process of creation was evolutionary. It took a long time to have plants, animals and minerals on earth. There may have been animals very like man. It is probably these skeletons which have been discovered.
Question: If there was no link between ape and man, what were the early men like?
Answer: There could have been men like Adam for some time.
History both before and after Jesus must be viewed symbolically rather than literally. The important point is in the meaning. Our calendar was changed at the time of the Roman Empire. Who knows what it was prior to that time, particularly before Abraham.
A friend of ours went up into a mountain cave to pray and meditate. He was gone for weeks and weeks, without access to any calendar or keeping a record of any kind. He and the people with him completely forgot the days and had no knowledge of how long they had been there. If you don't use a calendar, even now you cannot tell how many days have passed from any particular event. Without using a calendar, how could anyone tell whether the time elapsed was 900 years or 90 years? The matter is not important except in its symbology.
The prehistoric age is revelation and should not be taken literally. Since it is revelation, the figures appearing prior to Abraham should be regarded symbolically. It is not literally 2,000 years.
Question: Why don't we ask the spirit world about the exact time of the creation?
Answer: The spirit world does not have the same conception of time as we do, (It is useless to ask them how many years it has been). Our earth revolves around the sun once a year. But other planets revolve maybe once in every 20 years. So even spirits cannot tell us the time in terms of our own time.
Our Leader is not interested in straightening out this problem. It may be entirely symbolical. When we say 6,000 years, we don't mean a literal 6,000 years. We say 4, 40, 400, 1600 -- all have the same meaning. From King Saul to Solomon was 120 years, but in terms of God's providence it only means 40 years, because the three kings only accomplished one thing -- the erection of the Temple.
Question: We receive many questions on evolution. Can you tell me how the Divine Principle looks at evolution as Darwin expounded it?
Answer: Evolution is true, and all the creations of the mineral, vegetable and animal kingdoms have developed through the evolutionary process. According to the theory, there have been sudden changes at certain times to develop to a higher stage. Darwin recognized that change. He said there was motive and purpose for those changes, and some energy or power caused them. He could not see the cause, but he could see the evolutional result. This, of course, does not include man's creation. Evolutionary change is possible within a certain formula or plant or animal, but there is no evolutionary development from one family to another family. For instance, from rose to chrysanthemum. But within the family of chrysanthemums, change is possible.
Question: Then man, too, is continually evolving? Were Adam and Eve, then, an actual physical creation as it says in the Bible; or did their physical bodies evolve and their spirits evolve?
Answer: Adam and Eve were produced by exactly the same process as we produce a child. By strong love and energy of father and mother, a child is conceived and grows, first within the womb, then outside of it. In the same way, God created Adam and Eve. By His love and energy, a little thing was created which grew and grew and became Adam. It is all an evolutionary process.
Question: Then who nursed the two babies?
Answer: God Himself did. They were raised in a very unusual environment. Because of God's energy and power, He could do this. We don't know in what exact way. Even a plant grows from seed to tree in the natural environment which God created.
Question: How is man made in God's image?
Answer: The body is created to conform with the mind, and the mind is created to conform with God.
Some people are beautiful physically, but the inside is not beautiful. And some people have beautiful hearts but are outwardly ugly. In God's eyes, external beauty is not beautiful. Only inner beauty is beautiful.
Question: In what manner is man created in God's image?
Answer: The whole being, physical and spiritual, is created in God's image. In the spirit world, the form or image of God is not visible. But the entire spirit world appears like a human form. Some people belong to the part which represents the eye, some people belong to the part which represents the feet, etc. The huge cosmos is in human form. The entire universe appears in the form of a man; yet each individual according to his inclinations or specific mission or personality belongs to some specific part of the whole -- some to the eye, some to the heart, some to the feet, the lung, or brain, or hands. Those who are active with their hands may belong to the part of the universe which appears as hands; those who like to think more than other people may belong to the brain, and so on. Agricultural or industrial people may belong to hands or feet. The characteristics of individual men make up the total macrocosm.
Also, the earth spiritually appears in the form of a man. Each nation and each society may appear as the form of a man. Each family as well as each individual appears in the form of a man.
Judging from this, the individual God is still in the form of a man, and vice versa. Each cell of your body is in the image of you yourself.
It is different from any other cell. What makes man different from animals? It is the functions of thinking and feeling -- thought and love. We got these capacities for truth and love from God. What makes one individual different from another is his thinking and his feeling. An evil man thinks evil and loves evil. A good man thinks truth and feels good. What makes the essence of your soul after your death? What you have been thinking, feeling and loving on earth. To think and to love are beyond space and time. We can think about the philosophy of 2,000 years ago. We can love people across oceans just as we can love those who are with us. Because these capacities of thinking and loving transcend time and space, we are inclined to live for eternity. We don't want to cease to think or to love. These two functions are the image of God. These two functions make man different from everything else in creation. These two functions make your outward appearance different from others. Your inner self is formed by these two functions, and is reflected in your outer characteristics.
Energy is matter and matter is energy. God is energy. If energy created matter, is that how God created the world? How did He create the physical world? Energy is a form of vibration. Scientifically speaking, we are all a mass of energy. Whatever kind of mass you have is composed of three things, neutrons, protons and electrons. The consistency of molecules God alone knows. Man is not sufficiently advanced. But we can change a molecule. Einstein said that, when man reached the point where he could perceive the theory of the fourth dimension, God will allow mankind to change the mass. We will witness many things.
There is no distinction between energy and matter. Since God is plus energy, whenever minus energy appears (in other words, subject and object energy), then through the action of give and take they become one. They have a circling movement. So all things have an outward and an inward. The seed of a tree is the core of energy which attracts the chemical elements from the universe. Because it has the structure to obtain those elements, it grows and expands and becomes a tree. Likewise, the very beginning of humanity in a mother's body is like a seed which obtains all the elements through the mother's body. It is a plus energy, but it obtains the energy from the outside. It had the potential from the beginning. In that way, the whole creation came into being.
Question: In the sight of God, is a child considered a living soul while yet in the womb of its mother, or only after it breathes its first breath of air after birth?
Answer: Man must go through two worlds, spiritual and physical. The child must take at least one breath in the physical world before it can become a living soul. It is said in the Bible that God breathed into Adam and Adam became a living soul.