Unification News for March 1997
The North American Leadership 40-Day Workshop
A Report and Testimony Dr. Tyler Hendricks
Manhattan Center, New York, March 2, 1997
A number of years ago True Father convened a meeting with a number of Ph.D. students and began by asking us a simple question. Father asked, "You believe in the spirit world don't you?" I was struck at that moment because I had reached a point in my life where my response would have been that I indeed did believe in the Divine Principle, the spirit world etc. But did I really believe in the spirit world in subject position to the physical world? Was I really serious about True Father's work in the spirit world, and the presence of spirit world in my daily live? Father had struck a chord, asking a crucial question.
All the conditions Father makes on earth are for the victory in the spirit realm, for the sake of mobilizing the spirit world. Chung Pyung Lake is a place where the spirit world is absolutely in the subject position. In order for us physical people, whose lives and missions are very much centered on the physical world, to bring ourselves into the right relationship with the spirit world, we need to make our physical bodies suffer. We need to close down much of the physical stimulation which tends to keep us so absorbed and stressed out with physical world activities. The purpose of Chung Pyung Lake is to enable us to meet God. We know that we meet God through suffering. Therefore, life at Chung Pyung Lake is a life of suffering.
From the first moment that I arrived there, I realized that this is a place of suffering. Through our physical suffering we can meet God. The purpose of the 40 day workshop is not so that we might learn Divine Principle in a more deeply intellectual sense. It is the same Divine Principle. But the purpose of Chung Pyung Lake is to remove our fallen nature and to enable us to liberate ourselves from evil spirits. It is a different purpose to a traditional workshop. It is a purpose which causes one to confront oneself, to ask ourselves, "what we have been doing with our lives?" "What kind of heart and relationships do we have?" "What kind of luxuries, conveniences or excuses have we been making for ourselves?" "Why have we have remained in such a rut for so many years spiritually?" We realized at Chung Pyung Lake that if something does not intervene from God then we will remain in this same rut for the rest of our lives on earth, comforting and congratulating ourselves, having our little victories or defeats, but still remaining at the same level. We need some kind of dynamite underneath our spiritual lives in order to shake loose all the concepts, illusions, self-deceptions, jealousy, anger and resentments that we carry with us. The unredeemed sins of misused sexuality, misused public funds, and hurting other people's hearts. If we don't have something to shake us up we tend to become very comfortable with our present state of being.
What we realized at Chung Pyung Lake was that all of those sinful experiences manifest themselves as they connect to ongoing behavior, words, thoughts and actions that we carry out in our every day life. When we carry these out, spirits connect to us. The spirit world is very alive. True Father has opened up all the gates of the spirit world. All the spirits are coming down. These are the Last Days. For centuries spirits normally had a very difficult time to reach to the earth. But now spirits can come very freely, even from the lowest realms of the spirit world. They attach themselves to us. Sin is a condition which makes a base for us to have give and take with Satan. When we commit even small sins they lead to bigger sins. Small or large evil spirits attach themselves to us when we make a common base. They receive evil vitality elements from us, especially from blessed couples.
What we learned at Chung Pyung Lake is that we have so much heavy baggage in our hearts and our minds. Our patterns of thinking are not simply our own psychology, our own habitual thought patterns, but rather they are connected to actual spirits that are attached to us. But we can be liberated from them. Physical and spiritual illness is all connected to the spiritual world. It is connected through our long relationship through bad conditions that we have made. Of course, physical illness normally has a physical base, but there is a deep relationship with the spiritual side of our existence as well.
The purpose of Chung Pyung Lake is to give us the chance to liberate ourselves from these spirits. Daemo Nim is not a doctor for us to visit and receive a cure. We go there to treat ourselves. This was her guidance to us all the time: we can and must solve our own problems. She created the entire atmosphere in order for us to cure ourselves. This is our responsibility, our five percent. This is what is so confrontational. We are able to free ourselves and our descendants and go to the Kingdom of Heaven. We can completely liberate ourselves from 6,000 years of sin, if we want to. It is all up to ourselves. We simply need to ask ourselves if we really want to liberate ourselves.
The next step was, do we really believe this? This was another fundamental guidance: that we open our hearts and have faith that what is happening is true. The spirit world really exists. The angels are real. The spirits are real. These are not concepts. If you really believe it, then are you prepared to work with it? This is the real meaning of faith. This is what we are confronted with when we go to Chung Pyung Lake for 40 days.
Chung Pyung Lake was purchased by True Father in 1971. Father knew that this was a very special place. Even I, an uneducated westerner, could see that it is a very well-balanced meeting place of steep mountains, deep water and very pure air. There are huge mountains, deep ravines and a large lake, which narrows to a couple hundred yards across at the point of the workshop site. On both sides of the narrows are dramatic mountains with holy grounds at their top. One, across the water, we never accessed, but the one above the workshop site we climbed to everyday. Our church owns about ninety percent of the land in this whole area. When you climb to the top of the mountain and look out it is hard to imagine that Seoul is just fifty miles away. There are ranges upon ranges of mountains in every direction.
The famous gate to the Chung Pyung workshop site is an important boundary The angels remain inside; once you go outside the gate, the angelic help is no longer with you. Nobody goes out through this gate during the workshop unless there is a health reason. The workshops take place in tent-like structures with concrete ondol (heated) floors. There is aluminum scaffolding covered by heavy tarpaulin where the eating area is. When there is a high wind it is pretty shaky. One night we felt as if there were a blizzard outside, the walls were shaking so much, but it was some windiness.
If you continue around the corner of this ravine going up the mountains you come to the structures where the workshops take place. Daemo Nim's quarters are here, together with a special prayer room and meeting room for counseling. Above this structure is a bathroom, both permanent structures. Then there are more tent-like structures. First is the one for the western members and then there is a larger structure, twice as big, for the Japanese 40-day workshops. Then there is another large one for the 3-day workshops. These 3-day workshops are going on almost continually; when we were there the 170th 3-day workshop to take place in the last two years came and went. Then the next step on the path leveled out is a larger area which is centered upon the Tree of Love. That is the first of the five holy trees. Directly across from the Tree of Love there was a hill which has now been flattened. There, an area the size of a couple of football fields exists now. This is where an education center for 10,000, topped by a global conference center for True Parents is going to be built. It is directly across from the Tree of Love. This is a very commanding point where you can see out in every direction. It is a very beautiful spot.
Continuing up the hill is another very large structure for the Korean 40-day workshops. Then if you continue up a very steep paved road, at a walking distance of about fifteen minutes, you come to the area where the spring of holy water, the Water of Life. Three more special trees are situated surrounding the spring of the Water of Life. First, the Tree of Heart, then the Tree of All Things, and finally, directly above the Water of Life, the Tree of Loyalty. From there begins a much narrower and rougher path up the mountain. Another fifteen minute hike up this steep trail brings one to the final tree, the Tree of Blessing. We walked this path and prayed at the five trees every morning, and we drank of the Water of Life every morning and anytime during the day. According to their schedules individuals would go up during the day time or at night to visit the different trees. Especially the Tree of Love, which was close to our activities, was a popular place. We were encouraged to pray at the Tree of Love.
At each tree you pray for that specific realm. There are special angels at each tree that deal with those specific issues. The Tree of Love; the misuse of love and sexual sins. The Tree of Heart; opening of our hearts, developing our heartistic relationships. The Tree of All Things deals with material things, the use of money and assets, and the multiplication of children. The Tree of Loyalty; loyalty to our central figures, loyalty to True Parents and to God. Finally the Tree of Blessing, which connects to our own Blessing and the 3.6 million couples Blessing. We could deal with the challenges that we have in these areas at these specific trees, praying and engaging the angelic world.
The central activity of the workshop were the Liberation Ceremonies, three of which, each 70 minutes long, took place each day, one after each meal. They consisted of singing a holy song, "Grace of the Holy Garden," continually for the entire period, at a rapid clip, clapping at a 4/4 tempo with all our strength. As the Promise Keepers say, "real men sing loud," and we definitely sang loudly. The purpose of the clapping is very unique and deep. It is not just to keep the tempo, although it surely does that, creating a powerful martial atmosphere. The deeper purpose is to, well, to put it bluntly, cause pain. It doesn't normally hurt to clap your hands, does it? But try clapping hard, with your hands flat against each other, palm to palm, for 70 minutes, without stopping. Clapping begins to be seen in an entirely new light!
This kind of clapping is a form of what is called, "ansu." Ansu is an Asian form of medical treatment; it is called a high-powered acupuncture. Before I go on, let me mention, as I will again, that we were told clearly: don't try this at home! There are pressure points on the body's surface, connected with internal organs and muscles. If there is a disease, then when you clap the pressure point, even lightly, it will be rather painful. If you slap it several times, blood will appear under the surface of the skin, dark in color. By use of ansu, Asian doctors will treat the afflicted organ. If there is no disease, then the slapping does not hurt, and no blood comes to the surface. Daemo Nim has adapted the use of ansu to the singing and clapping sessions. At certain points, as signaled by the leader on the stage (one among the several cheerleaders revving up the spirit as model singers and clappers), we would begin to self-administer ansu, slapping our own arms, legs, chests, even heads, faces, and, gently, eyes and ears. The only part which could not be self-administered is the back, and this would be provided, gratis, by you to the person sitting in front of you, while, for an equally low cost, the person behind you would apply it to you. Imagine 200, 300, 400 people all doing this simultaneously, while singing loudly to the beat of a big bass drum! If you know a better way to create an intense spiritual atmosphere, the world will beat a path to your door.
My first real experience of ansu was during the first 3-day workshop. All of a sudden, out of the blue, as the Liberation session was about to begin, one sister began to hit my back. I tell you, it was excruciating! I felt as if I were Jesus, hanging by ropes to a pole being whipped by the Roman soldiers! She hit me five or ten times. It wasn't even during the liberation ceremony, she just felt inspired. (Laughter) I think she had something against me, because she said, with a rather gleeful expression, "You don't have any laptop computer here." (Laughter) Afterwards, people were looking under my shirt to see the marks of her ansu. They would recoil in shock at the show of black and purple blood. Of course, I felt a little pride; "aw, shucks, it waren't nuthin'" Then a few moments after that we did begin the liberation ceremony. This was even more painful. I imagined that there must be an enormously strong German brother behind me. But when I looked back there sat this humble little Korean sister. (Laughter) But after that day, I didn't feel any more pain when anyone hit my back. Towards the end of the workshop I spoke with that first sister and explained how painful that first time was. She said, "Really?" Her husband was surprised and said, "She can't slap hard at all. I have to get someone else to hit my back because she is so weak." I realized it wasn't a physical thing. The pain I felt had a spiritual cause. It works like this:
Daemo Nim said that our evil spirits are lodged between the cells of our body. They are really in our bodies. The Bible also mentions this, as does Divine Principle. St. Paul said that the law of sin "dwells in his members." To get rid of them, you have to shake them and try to dislodge them; it becomes very painful. Daemo Nim said they get intoxicated and disoriented and loosen their hold. Then the angels who are experts at pulling out evil spirits come and remove them. Where they take them to is another special blessing of Chung Pyung Lake. In the Bible it tells how Jesus removed evil spirits. But those spirits were able to return, with their friends. Many spiritualists today can take out evil spirits, but they can return to the host, with other spirits. But the victory of Daemo Nim and Heung Jin Nim led to their dominion over these very strong angels, whom they employ to assist us.
Immediately after the lunar New Year, Daemo Nim said that God had sent His own angels to Chung Pyung Lake to work with us. These are the top angels. These angels take them to Heung Jin Nim's 100 days workshop in the spirit world. Spirits who don't want to go there are taken on a tour by him of the spirit world so they can fully understand what is going on. It scares the hell out of them. It is that kind of reality education. After this 100 day workshop these spirits are prepared to receive the Blessing next November 29, 1997. True Parents will not only bless 3.6 million couples on earth, but also in the spirit world. What a grace, a miracle, for these spirits to receive the blessing in the spiritual world. I was always witnessing to my spirits how great it would be for them to go up to that workshop; much better than hanging around with me here on earth. Then they can return and work with us from a position of a resurrected spirit. At that point is where judgment returns to us. After we return from Chung Pyung Lake, we should be working for the 3.6 million Blessing. After they are blessed these spirits return to us. If we are working strongly for God's providence, they will multiply our work 100 fold. They are our mobilized spirit world. But if we are slacking off and deviating, they will become agents of God's punishment, or, let us say, wake-up call, to us. This is a reality we were told at Chung Pyung Lake.
The ansu became a more and more central experience. Even after the seventy minutes were over people would be asking each other to give them ansu We were told that only at Chung Pyung Lake is this practice to be carried out. Only at Chung Pyung Lake can it be carried out responsibly with angels who can cooperate and take out the spirits. People were very serious to cleanse themselves. It did seem that the more we went through the mortification of the flesh the more cleansed and liberated one felt. Several people had marked improvement of physical health as well.
Keeping the Schedule
The other two sessions in the morning and afternoon were devoted to reading Exposition of the Divine Principle. The new translation was appreciated by everyone. We would have three readers each session at the microphone. Everyone would read along out loud. It became a very powerful experience. The unison reading of the Divine Principle mobilizes the spirit world, illuminates your mind and heart. Of course it is not without challenges. You have to fight against sleep. But as you confront many things you are learning Divine Principle in a much deeper way. We read the entire book through eight times during the forty days. During the evenings there were two more sessions which were devoted to lecture practice and reading True Father's words and giving testimonies. We would finish at 11:40 p.m. and then would take our holy candles and go up to the Tree of Love for a group midnight prayer.
Sometimes there were be 2,000 - 3,000 people gathered at the Tree of Love for the closing prayer; a short prayer and singing Song of the Garden and closing the day together.
Daemo Nim is like Jeremiah. Jeremiah was a prophet who came and wrought awful warnings of judgment on the sinners of his age. I really felt that Daemo Nim was a modern day Jeremiah. Because she is a woman there is a certain softness to her delivery, but she delivers a powerful indictment of our condition. She would say, "If you could see yourselves spiritually, you be so afraid; you would realize you are destined to hell." She would beg and plead with us to wake up and become serious and work hard, because we are just covered, infiltrated with evil spirits. She told us that the evil spirits don't just disappear when we die physically, but they go to our children. It is for the sake of our children, then, that we have to liberate ourselves. Our children inherit everything that we do not resolve; this is the meaning of inherited sin. Once we are in the spirit world, how can we reach our children? It is not even easy to come back and communicate with them. Even if we could they might not listen. If we cannot communicate with our own children here on the earth, how can we expect to do so from the spirit world?
She told us that we might be forced to be in the position to wreak accidents and punishment on our own children to wake them up if they are going in the wrong direction because of the evil conditions that we made and they inherited because we never resolved. She was really strong on that. We was pleading for the sake of our lineage.
Chung Pyung Lake is the only place where you can liberate yourself and save your second and third generation. Daemo Nim told us, "Father is begging me to get all the evil spirits off of you. You have spirits in every cell, huge volumes. Don't fall asleep. Never take it easy. Not one of you can go to the Kingdom of Heaven. All of your spirits are going to go to your children. You are your children's ancestors. If you live wrongly then your descendants will suffer. You don't want to do evil, but evil spirits make you do evil. If you work hard you can see the evil spirits inside of you. You must win the battle against Satan. You can never sleep. Satan is making you sleep. This forty days is your chance to go to the Kingdom of Heaven and to save your children." Father gave so much responsibility to Daemo Nim.
I would like to take the last few minutes to give a personal testimony. I received a lot of spiritual support at Chung Pyung. For the first thirty four days of the workshop I was doing fine, in a way. I was designated the director of the Western workshop and we ended up directing the national messiahs as well. But it really wasn't a big challenge because the workshop runs itself. It is self-motivating, with the same schedule every day. It was just a matter of keeping things on course. I made it my goal to, as a minimum, absolutely maintain the schedule. I thought that maintaining the schedule was the bottom line. That is hard enough in itself, no sleep in the daytime, no dozing off. Just eat the food that I'm given, be on time for everything, fulfill all the conditions (including a cold water condition every other day), work with all of my effort and try to be a good example. I apparently did that successfully for most of the workshop, because many people told me that I was inspirational to them. I was always humbled, because I was just trying to keep the schedule. But I surely was grateful if God could use me to inspire people.
At the same time, I was having no spiritual experiences. Right and left, people were giving their testimonies of angels appearing and doing surgery on them, dark clouds of evil spirits coming out of their mouths, ghosts appearing through the walls, and so forth. I didn't have any of this happen. One brother said that he had a bad back for many years which no one was able to cure. One day he was walking down the mountain and he stumbled and fell. There are all kinds of rough spots down the mountain paths there, rocks and protruding roots, and something like that hit him as he fell right on his back, exactly in the place that solved his back problem! However, I had no such experience. I had no trouble to climb the mountain; I just went up can came down. My challenge was to get more deep about it! I began to wonder what was happening. I wondered if it was a test of my faith to believe everything even though I wasn't experiencing it myself. I did believe. I was set to go through the whole workshop without any special experiences. Because it was a wonderful experience anyway. I felt so much spiritual support enabling me to physically maintain everything. I really didn't feel sleepy. There really were no problems for me_except for an increasingly sore back from sitting cross-legged on the floor ten hours a day.
Then, in the early morning of the sixth day of the fast, I woke up with excruciating pains in my mid-section. I couldn't move for quite a while. Pain as I've never experienced was shooting up and down my body on my left side, centering on my left kidney. Two or three hours later it was time for Pledge Service (it was a Sunday). It took me half an hour to get my clothes on. All of a sudden I was struck physically and couldn't function well at all. I thought perhaps I hadn't drunk enough water and so I began drinking water. Then I wondered if I had gotten a little too much ansu in the kidneys because you are not supposed to be hit in that area. Certain external reasons came to mind. But the external is only that; external. There is always in internal cause. and indeed, from that point on, my heart began to really open up. I don't know why. But just when I hit my physical limitation, I felt so sorry to God. That day I went through the Liberation Ceremony struggling, but still I made it. Then during the Divine Principle reading, I just couldn't make it sitting on the floor. I just had to get up and sit in a chair, and one brother, so generously, gave up his chair. I sat down on his chair and tried to read and began crying and crying. My heart just opened up. I really hardly ever cry, maybe once every ten years. But the gates to my heart opened and I couldn't stop crying.
During the next several days Liberation Ceremonies, all of a sudden I would begin crying. This was such a big breakthrough for me. I felt so much repentance when I was crying. My physical limitation is really a shadow of my spiritual limitation. Working so hard, but somewhere inside there is something very wounded; very broken. I repented so much in my heart for my attitude to True Parents, my attitude to Reverend Pak that I just cannot be a good enough leader. I hold a certain position and responsibility, but internally, deep inside, I am a man of so much failure. So much incapability to give the fruits to True Parents for America. This kind of really deep pain I felt at Chung Pyung Lake in those final days. I am so grateful that I was able to get in touch with that awful reality within myself, and at least repent honestly and deeply for it. Even the repentance is cleansing.
Throughout the workshop we had been hearing about these angels at each of the trees. But I had not had any experience of them consciously, so I thought that maybe a lot was happening unconsciously. But on the thirty eighth night, I was praying, just the same as I had any other night. As usual I would pray, "Angel of the Tree of Love, please take out the spirits in me which I have accumulated due to so many sins of love." All of a sudden on this particular night, as soon as I requested the angel to take out those spirits I felt this sucking sensation pulling something out from my body. It was as if there was a huge suction cup above my head. I felt it pulling from the bottom of my feet up through the front of my body and top of my head and out. It kind of pulled my body forward. I realized it was truly happening to me. The more I repented and requested for it to be taken out the more I felt this sensation. Then the public prayer ended. Then the angel very matter-of-factly said, "Is that all? You can ask anytime and we can do this." So I prayed, as I usually did, for a few moments after the prayer ended, and asked the same thing and had the same experience. Whenever I went to the Tree of Love after that I would ask for it to happen and I felt that kind of experience.
I feel so grateful to God for this experience. It is really true. I always had believed it in faith, but to have your spiritual and physical senses resonating with each other so that your spiritual experience is felt as a physical experience brings it all to a whole different dimension. It is so elevating. I realized that it is really true that the angels are there and waiting for us. It took me thirty eight days for me to experience it myself. I don't care if it takes one day or thirty eight days, it is all up to God and my own effort. But for me it happened right at the end. I feel so grateful to God and I do feel so empty in a way spiritually. I feel good. (Applause) I feel tired. Those who go there with bad health come back in good shape and those who go in good health come back in bad shape. You have to forgive me because I am a little under weight. But I feel spiritually strong and very determined.
This I impressed upon everyone as we reached the end of the 40-days. Chung Pyung Lake is really a foundation of faith. Forty days period of separation from Satan. Whenever there was a forty day condition in the Bible, Satan always attacked at the end. The spies went into Canaan for forty days and Satan attacked at the end with the false reports and the attempt to stone Joshua and Caleb. Moses was up the mountain for forty days fasting. He came down the mountain and Satan attacked and he broke the tablets. There was four hundred years waiting for Abraham, and then he had to make the three offerings. Satan attacked at the three offerings. Satan came to Jesus at the end of the forty- day fast.
Therefore I warned everyone that when they return Satan will take the opportunity to claim the forty days if he can. He will invade the stage of creating the foundation of substance. The foundation of substance means unity with your central figure. Unity with Abel. I have made a very sincere effort to make better unity with Reverend Pak and True Parents.
The Korean Regional Directors were all on the floor together with us. Same level, same schedule, same everything, but they were really the heartistic elders and parents to everyone. We really came to appreciate the Korean Regional Directors and the KEA leaders. They were all such a blessing for us all. Thank you all for this opportunity to give this report. God bless you all.
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