God's Will and the Ocean
Sun Myung Moon
Reverend Moon is a man with a vision. That vision, far reaching in its goals and comprehensive in its content, stems from the conviction that this world and especially the human beings who occupy it were created in order to share in a relationship with God. However, human history and current events show that we have fallen far short of becoming this kind of people. Rather than returning joy and glory to God and living with respect and love for one another, we have inherited and now participate in a history filled with selfish strife and stubborn ignorance.
It has not only been humankind who has suffered throughout human history. God, who created all things from the perspective and heart of a parent, has surely cried out in pain over each careless act that brought further misery into the lives of His children. How does one respond when he perceives this, the suffering of God and the plight of humankind? How does one face this endangered world and take up the task left by great prophets and religious leaders before him? How does one who hears the call, "Take up the cross and follow me," truly answer that call, and to the fullest extent, live out what that means?
From early on in his life, Reverend Moon has been patiently and painfully giving his full attention to these questions. Through years of scriptural study, ardent prayers and a daily life that rigorously tested every detail of his search, he discovered the answers. He realized that he could not just give words to bring solutions, but had to exemplify those words in his daily life. The arduous task which he began, of bringing a new and vitally needed message to this world, has been somewhat documented, but not fully as of yet.
The thirteen speeches and numerous excerpts contained in this volume are part of this man's vision. Indeed, they are a special part because they reveal the high hopes and practical plans of a man truly desiring to bring God back into the lives of men and women, and the world back into the bosom of God. Whenever Reverend Moon puts his hand and heart towards any project, large or small, he is always motivated by this singular desire. So it is with his vision of the ocean.
Reverend Moon recognizes that mankind has been greatly wounded by prolonged poverty and extensive violence. Our earthly environment has also suffered tremendous abuse through the centuries of unchecked and unwise use. Humankind has largely failed to develop an internal sensitivity, a spirituality, to guide its external technical advancements. Thus, we face a dilemma which threatens worldwide survival.
Reverend Moon perceives the task of healing this situation on both universal and individual scales. To have a good world, there must be good men and women within it. To have good men and women, there must first be good children, raised in good, God centered families. From such families, good communities, societies and nations can grow and expand. In this way a good world can unfold, imbued with the spirit of God and built by the hands of mankind.
Tragically, we are often unaware of our precious value in front of God and fail to act accordingly. In other words, we are ignorant of and fail to manifest the full dignity of our human responsibilities. Young people today especially find it difficult to experience the presence of a loving God in a chaotic world that appears bent upon its own demise. Consequently, they give up and live out their despair in destructive acts such as drug abuse, immature and immoral love, and cynical lifestyles that pursue only self fulfillment.
One of the cornerstones of Reverend Moon's message is that we are given life for a purpose; to experience and manifest God's very essence, which is love. This purpose can be realized as each of us becomes attentive to and fulfills the fundamental responsibilities of human life. The first book of the Bible, Genesis, expresses this purpose as the three Great Blessings. These three blessings are the core of Reverend Moon's message, and his clear explanation of how they can be accomplished is providing inspiration and direction for people throughout the world.
The First Blessing calls us to the full realization of each individual as a true child and person in the image of God: "Be fruitful, . . ." The Second Blessing calls us to expand upon this through the attainment of mature and lasting love between a man and a woman expressed through marriage and family centered upon God: ". . . multiply, . . ." Therefore, children can be raised in a loving and secure environment which produces an ever-widening spiral linking God to people and people to God. Building upon the first two blessings, the Third Blessing exhorts humankind to take its proper position in the universe: ". . . and replenish the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and of the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth." Thus humankind indeed becomes the God-centered caretaker of the world, empowered by the benevolent love of God rather than greed and selfishness. In essence, these are the responsibilities of humankind, and when respectively fulfilled, they become the wonderful blessings of life.
Reverend Moon came to America with this and much more in his mind and heart. He came with a special concern about the youth of this nation and the depth of this care is reflected in many of his speeches. Although he has begun an incredible array of projects, the central focus of his efforts has been to raise up the youth of this nation so that America's future and the future of the world can move in the direction of God's will -- towards the establishment of a heavenly kingdom on earth.
Ocean Church is one such project, for as Reverend Moon has often said, "Whoever is concerned about the future must look towards the ocean." Although he officially inaugurated Ocean Church in 1980, Reverend Moon had already spent more than a decade of active and intensive fishing upon the ocean. But it was not just for fish that he went to the ocean; he went there to pray and meditate. From those seasons of hard work in all kinds of severe conditions, he was able to lay the concrete plans which are now unfolding in the Ocean Church providence. The speeches herein outline the development of those ideas.
The ocean is the world's most vast resource. It is also the world's most delicate resource. To properly use the ocean, men and women must receive training so that they can become people of the highest caliber. If the ocean is utilized with anything less, it too will go the way of many other aspects of the Creation which have been, and still are, plundered and polluted to the point of no return.
One of Reverend Moon's desires is that ocean-going individuals and related communities and enterprises can be duly inspired to wisely integrate their approaches to the ocean. If we understand our position to be that of good stewards, we will want to use the ocean for the benefit of all. We will also be concerned to balance development of the ocean's resources with proper conservation and management. Many of Reverend Moon's speeches contain references to the potential of the ocean as well as the need to protect and take care of it. It is truly one of his greatest hopes that the resources of the ocean can be utilized in their full measure in order to better feed the world's hungry.
The solution of these and other related problems begins with dedicated individuals. In the following speeches, one will find that Reverend Moon regards every aspect of the ocean as a tool for teaching. No small detail lacks importance to this end. In training young men and women to take care of their boats, he asks them to do so with the spirit of taking care of the entire world. In discussing the minute procedures of catching a tuna, he asks them to accomplish what is often difficult and sometimes dangerous with the spirit of taking on bigger and bolder projects that yet lay ahead.
For Reverend Moon, the ocean is not only a classroom; it is also a cathedral. It is not only a place to learn daily realities; it is also a place where little exists that can close the mind and corrupt the heart. Out on the ocean, without the pressures and pretensions of modern life, a young person's heart can unfold naturally. At sea, the elements are Much larger than the person. When the sun rises on the ocean, an entire horizon opens up and the mind can aspire to great thoughts. When wave upon wave rocks the boat, the rhythm of life itself begins to beat within the heart. One cannot help but feel part of a grand panorama that has pattern and power, beauty and abundance. There, the presence of God can be keenly felt and clearly known. Awe is a common experience, almost a daily event.
In the following speeches, one can see that Reverend Moon has experienced these things to the core of his being. Without hesitation, he has shared his experience in every possible way with those who have been with him and for those who will come after him. The ocean-going tradition is the tradition of the poetic heart that bears practical responsibility. It is in the spirit of that tradition that we commend this volume to you.