Pyeong Hwa Gyeong: Episode 295
Pyeong Hwa Gyeong: A Selection of True Parents’ Speeches
Book 7: The World of the Culture of Heart
Speech 14: The Significance of the Inauguration of the Sun Moon Peace Cup, pg 1089-1092
Sports and world peace
This is a gathering of leaders in the world of soccer. Soccer fever is sweeping Korea and Japan, and the entire world has come together in a festive atmosphere. Ultimately, though, it is only proper that the world of sports represented by the Olympics and the World Cup guide the world’s people toward reconciliation and peace. Occasionally, there is concern about money and power contaminating the pure spirit of athleticism. It is necessary to examine carefully the economics of sports, and whether parties are engaging in unethical speculative or monopolistic practices.
In an effort to contribute toward world peace through sports, I invested some time ago in the development of soccer in Korea by founding the Il Hwa professional soccer team. More recently, I had Sun Moon University begin a soccer team. In Brazil as well, we are managing the CENE and Sorocaba professional soccer teams. My interest in the management of soccer teams is not a matter of business. My first priority is to teach sportsmanship to young people of the university soccer teams, so that they can be trained to join professional teams that ultimately contribute to world peace through sports.
It is well known that soccer began in England. It was developed at Eton College, a school for the sons of aristocrats, where in addition to knowledge physical fitness was considered an important quality for leadership. However, with its emphasis on teamwork, it did not take long for soccer’s popularity to grow beyond the aristocracy and penetrate the wider society.
Even if one player is exceptionally skillful, it is difficult for a team to win unless the other members can back up this individual. The ball is round and can roll this way or that, yet the ball is honest and it rolls where a player kicks it. There is a principle of purposeful community underlying the game of soccer. It is not a game where established powers can use trickery to preserve their position. There is no order according to which teams are allowed to score goals. In soccer, it does not matter whether a country is large or small, strong or weak. Goals are scored honestly, and that brings joy and happiness to everyone. In soccer, there is only the energetic communal harmony that comes from team play.
Soccer and other sports, as well as the entire leisure industry, have developed over a long period of time. Sports were originally supported in order to create strong bodies and maintain safe societies. Today, they have developed to a global scale and bring enjoyment and enrichment to the lives of billions of people. So, it is important that we seek ways by which sports can contribute to achieving peace for all the world’s peoples.
Sports are governed by rules of fair competition
The world stands at the dawn of a new millennium. Astonishing developments in information technology are turning the ideal of one world family into a reality. On the other hand, it is also true that the world faces a moral crisis and the danger that spiritual values will be destroyed. We look to sports as an environment that can generate constructive proposals for how to overcome hedonism and self-centered values among young people.
Sports employ rules to insure fair competition. Thus defined, competition differs from conflict; the two exist on different levels. Conflict appears as savage and bloodthirsty behavior that is worse than how animals live. One side uses physical and military strength to negate the other side’s existence and annihilate it. Competition in sports is different from this. Rules are established, the winner is decided in accordance with these rules, and each side acknowledges the other. A respectful spirit governs sports. As multitudes of people watch, the athletes demonstrate fair play and sportsmanship as they compete based on their talents, abilities and strength. They follow the agreed upon rules, and they submit themselves to the fair judgment of the referees.
Fair play is considered the most important aspect of the game. It requires obeying laws and following the rules. Breaking the rules and committing fouls result in the loss of points, expulsion from the game and eventual loss of the privilege of participation. Offending players are punished.
Athletes pour out all their energy, sincerity and courage for the sake of the victory, for both their individual glory and the glory of their country. The victorious players are given a crown of laurels, a gold medal and a bouquet of flowers. They receive thunderous applause, and they hear their national anthem played as their country’s flag is raised. Such a ceremony brings us to the height of emotion; everyone celebrates that they have attained ultimate glory. Even the losers do not dwell on their disappointment, but applaud the accomplishment of the winners. This is the virtue of sports.
Sports bring out a beautiful fragrance of friendship and love among like-minded people. The players display virtue when they demonstrate sportsmanship. They work hard, shed sweat and tears and achieve incredible standards of skill. They are trained in the virtues of fairness, keeping to their proper roles, and good manners.
Athletics and sports make significant contributions to contemporary society. It contributes to our physical and mental health and provides excitement through skillful play. The love of sports transcends religious dogma and political ideology. All people can become one through sports in a banquet of reconciliation and peace, because athletic competition is where the hearts of all the world’s people can come together as one.
Though the Cold War is over, the world is still unable to throw off the yoke of suffering that afflicts us all. As the tragedy of September 11th last year highlighted, the world is in agony over conflict and strife between religious and ethnic groups. Also, the world’s natural environment is being destroyed. Young people, who are supposed to be responsible for the future, have become cynical, enthralled by materialism and hedonism, falling prey to drugs and abandoning the norms of social behavior.
In order to solve these problems, we need to graft the authentic spirit of sports onto the foundation of a truth that teaches us to live for the sake of others. It is to live as God lives. Then we need to put this spirit and truth into practice. This is how we will be able to build a world of harmony, peace and unity.
The Sun Moon Peace Cup is a festival for the community
For this reason, I am happy to announce the establishment of the Sun Moon Peace Cup. The Sun Moon Peace Cup is the cup of the sun and the moon, the cup of the Parents of Heaven and Earth, and the cup of peace. May it shine forever with the light of pure love!
The Sun Moon Peace Cup is different from any existing trophies that exclude God, emphasize entertainment or idolize celebrity. It tells the world to know God and the spirit world thoroughly and walk the path of truth.
The Sun Moon Peace Cup will be a festival. I want it to bring together efforts toward the original world of God’s ideal in the fields of religion, science, politics, economics and sports, including the unique contributions of women and youth. Participants will express their hope for humanity to come together as one large family. It will serve as a particularly important starting point for progress toward the ideal of true peace centering on God’s true love, transcending barriers between races, countries, ethnic groups, religions and ideologies.
The Sun Moon Peace Cup will not only celebrate the healthy spirit of humanity. As our spiritual nature continues to develop, it will become a festival of internal and external reconciliation and harmony among members of the world community. It will be a place where people unite in one mind, as one family, and with one heart, to open the way toward God’s ideal of creation, a world of peace, freedom and happiness.
I want to inform you that Pele has already promised to work with me for this great cause. I would like to ask FIFA, Pele Promotions, and everyone here to take a leading role and contribute significantly toward the development of the Sun Moon Peace Cup.
I pray that God’s love and blessing will flow abundantly upon you and your families.