Unification News for January 2000

DP Study

Volume 4 - Part 2

Some modern sage has observed that life is like an onion: a person unpeels it one layer at a time, and he cries a lot. Such is the life we have come to know in a fallen world, separated from God's love.

In response to this sad reality, the vision of a just and loving society has recurrently emerged at different time and places throughout human history. Even such a figure as Charlemagne, no ingenue in human affairs, is said to have slept with a copy of St. Augustine's City of God under his pillow and to have sought to realize its promise in the vast kingdom he governed.

In medieval times the popular legends of the exploits of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round table, in the idyllic realm of Camelot bespoke this universal yearning for an ideal. In modern times the Camelot legend has been recalled in descriptions of the hope and vision John F. Kennedy brought to the American presidency in the early 1960s.

Sometimes the vision of an ideal occurs in the unlikeliest of places. In the eyes of those unacquainted with pre-revolutionary Russian piety, the proclamation by Feodor Dostoyevsky of his country's messianic, historical role comes as shock or even a cruel joke. But in June of 1880, during the dedication of Pushkin's statute, the literary giant announced a Russian mission to usher in the brotherhood of all humanity, based on religious, not political ideals. Far from exploding into laughter, his distinguished audience listened with rapt attention. He was greeted with shouts of genius!, saint! and prophet! Something in the deepest layers in the Slavic soul passionately responded not only to Dostoyevsky's love affair with his native Russia but also to his call for a universal religious, socio-economic order inspired by Russian spirituality and social ideals.

Not off the mark

Although such visionary dreams as those of Charlemagne and Dostoyevsky have not yet been realized, Divine Principle teaches their idealism is not far from the mark. Since God originally intended a world of good, sooner or later He must do something to remedy the existing situation. God is absolute, eternal and unchanging. If God is therefore to be God, He must achieve His original ideal. A defeated God is no God at all. Thus God intends to restore man to the uncorrupted state he had before the Fall and finally eradicate evil and suffering from human existence.

Reflecting this determination, Isaiah writes in the spirit of the Lord: "I have spoken and I will bring it to pass: I have purposed, and I will do it." (Is. 46:11)

The process of history then is the process of realizing this original ideal. Since human history began with evil and suffering, it became a history of God's efforts to restore the original, but lost purpose. The ultimate goal of history is thus to supplant the chronicle of suffering we have known with the story of goodness which God originally intended.

Universal ideal

In their own way, there are other modern thinkers who also recognize that one day humanity is destined to achieve some type of universal ideal. The eminent Jesuit thinker M.C. D'Arcy, for example, suggests that the things that have worked against us can come actually to work for us: "Historians, for the most part, are prepared to admit a kind of spiral movement ... towards a universal society ... without his willing it, man has been forced to unite to form into nations and leagues, through the pressure of events ... and what with economic and social interdependence and the threat of nuclear arms, and international society is in prospect."

In the same vein, well-known Jesuit scientist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin sees the universe being inexorably led to union with God. He foresees a day when humankind will reach what he calls the Omega point. At this point man becomes united with God, each individual is Christlike, and the world becomes divine.

Another French scientist, Lecompte duNuoy, has written a similar process in his book, Human Destiny. He concludes his book by asking all men to remember that the destiny of man is incomparable, but that we must collaborate in the transcendent task.

With Chardin and duNuoy, Divine Principle affirms a historical process of humankind's movement toward God--a movement inspired by God Himself. Goodness marches on toward its goal in spite of numerous obstacles. From Moses to Jesus, from Buddha to Confucius, from the early disciples to our own times, God is working to transform the world according to His dispensation of restoration. Indeed He has been working to spark a fire wherever the heart, mind and soul of man have been so inclined to receive it. Ultimately then, the suffering history we have known will be supplanted by the creative and joyful history God originally planned.

If we think pictorially, we may thus say the line of history is no straight but circular, bringing us at the end to what history should have been at the beginning. The end of history is thus the fulfillment by God of His original ideal.

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