Pyeong Hwa Gyeong: Episode 138
Pyeong Hwa Gyeong: A Selection of True Parents’ Speeches
Book 3: The Mission of Religion in Achieving God’s Ideal
Speech 15: Understanding Life and Death, pg 482-485
We need to live in accord with God’s laws
What kind of place is the spirit world? When we enter the spirit world, we begin to breathe through a hole on the top of our head and through our cells. The “air” in the spirit world is not the air we have on earth. Instead, it is love. When a spirit person breathes, he or she inhales and exhales the nourishing elements of love. On earth, eating and drinking alone are not sufficient to sustain our life. When we eat and drink, we are merely filling our physical body with food and water. Eventually, our physical body will die. The form we take during life on earth is our second existence. While on earth, we need to develop our character of love. Therefore, on earth, the thing we need most is love.
What is an orphan? Why do we call a child who cannot receive love from a father or mother an orphan? It is because that child lacks the love by which he or she can connect eternally with the spirit world. In the absence of love, we feel lonely. That is why we feel sorry for a person who lives without a spouse.
The death of our physical body destroys our ability to breathe in the second stage, yet it connects our spirit self with the nourishment of love. We eventually have no choice except to leave the physical body behind. We cannot see love, yet our internal structure develops based on experiencing the love of parents, the love between husband and wife, and the love of children. Just as there is a normal course of development for a child in its mother’s womb, there is a normal course of development of the spirit self on earth. We follow this course by living in accord with the laws of God. We cannot do it by living in any other way.
If we examine the world of nature, we see that many insignificant-looking insects, seeds of plants and even small birds can fly. Does it make sense that human beings, the greatest of all created beings, cannot fly? Observe the dandelion. It is made such that its seeds fly away when the wind blows. Birds fly, insects fly and the seeds of plants fly. Surely, human beings also must have been created with a means to fly. Someone might be tempted to complain, “God, why did you create us without the ability to fly when many other things in creation can fly?” God would probably reply, “Wait a few decades until you become fully mature and then I will let you fly.”
We need to train ourselves to love on earth
So what will we be doing until then? We need to train ourselves to be able to adapt to the spirit world. We need to train ourselves by loving our parents, our spouse and our children. Then, when the time comes, we will enter the eternal world and live in attendance to God. For that to take place, we have to discard this physical body and die.
Consider the life cycle of a cicada. Before a cicada can fly, it goes through a nymph stage. What would happen if the nymph of a cicada said, “I want to go on living as a nymph; I don’t want to shed my skin; I don’t care about land and air?” Even if it tried to resist its metamorphosis, once it sheds its skin it will fly away.
A similar process occurs in the case of a dragonfly. The female lays its eggs in or near water. When the eggs hatch, the nymphs swim in the water. When the nymphs are fully grown, they crawl out of the water. They shed their skin to become an adult dragonfly that flies away. It begins to eat insects that it would have never thought of eating while living underwater. In like manner, many insects pass through different stages and develop wings.
Human beings are the highest forms of creation, yet do we have wings? Does living only on land satisfy us? We have wings, but they are wings of a higher order. You may say you don’t want to cast aside your physical body and die. However, once we die and leave our physical body behind, our spirit self passes through the blessed gates of our second birth and whoosh, we fly away.
As I have already said, we cannot avoid the death of our physical body. We have to be prepared to endure suffering in the physical world in order to express our good nature and develop our spirit self that will live in the eternal spirit world. A fetus in its mother’s womb has to receive proper prenatal care if it is to be born healthy and strong. Similarly, we need to prepare ourselves appropriately while on earth. We need to develop our character by modeling ourselves in the image of God, expressing the heart of God and the divinity of God.
Once we have reached maturity, we need to invest our lives to cross over the line between life and death. We have to cross over successfully even if we have to brave the fiercest storm. It is not enough to do well most of the way and then fall just short of the finish line. What will we do when we find ourselves approaching life’s finish line? Even if we run with our mind focused totally on the goal, we can’t be confident we will make it all the way through with success. If we wander aimlessly at the end, we will be ruined. We can win victory only as we dash across the finish line.
Every person will find it worthwhile to make this effort. No matter how much opposition you may encounter from behind, or how much persecution is leveled at you from the sides, you just have to push forward, one step after another. There is no time to get entangled with the opposition. You have to keep going as quickly as you can, even one step at a time, in order to traverse your destined path to its end and finally cross the finish line. All of us have to go this way.
We often describe a person’s heart as “upright.” What does that mean? When a heart is firmly vertical, we say it is upright. If a tree is lying on the ground, we don’t say it is upright. The same is true when we refer to a heart as upright. This expression means that the person’s heart has a vertical orientation. That is why we are in an upright position when walking. An object needs to be vertical to be described as upright.
We have to set our heart in a completely vertical orientation. Then our body will be horizontal, relative to that. When the vertical and horizontal dimensions are set within us, the pulling power of the vertical and the pushing power of the horizontal will be mutually balanced. Centripetal and centrifugal forces will arise, balancing each other. Therefore, we need to find our true nature. When we maintain ourselves in this manner, we will be able to say that God and True Parents are similar in nature. On this foundation, we can expand our sphere of life through our relatives, clan and nation.
Doctors quarantine patients who have dangerous communicable diseases. For the same reason, it would be ideal for people who know the Will of God and continue to sin despite this knowledge to be isolated so they can have time for self-reflection and to consider their value to others as they face themselves. Even Jesus and the saints went this way. Through suffering in a wilderness environment, where there might not be a place to sleep or food to eat, we can genuinely repent.