The old cistern stands forlorn, ringed by stones, darkened by the patina of centuries. During Joseon Dynasty it must have been so cold in winter. Seeing this old well from a hundred years ago leads me down many pathways of thought.
I love to fly airplanes and sailplanes, yet here in Korea I do not yet feel free to do so. Ah! To be free to soar in the sky without borders north, south, east or west, nor above nor below — is true freedom and happiness. The only bounds are the laws of gravity, the continuous exchange of kinetic and potential energy, the aerodynamic principles, and the twelve hours of daylight during which a motorless glider can take advantage of the serendipitous thermals, the mountain slopes, the vagrant winds, and farmers’ fields.
Freedom is the light of life and of the Holy Spirit.
Now Americans are foolishly giving up their freedom and selling out their country without realizing what they are going to lose.
When I think of this, I truly realize what Japan did in dominating Korea. To dominate another country, people, and their free agency is an enormous sin. While Japan is a truly happy nation, they must deeply recognize what they have done to the peoples of other countries, and not only one.
Now Korea is free, and the country and its people are prospering boundlessly! I am happy here. I feel basically free. I don’t feel this country is small, but large.
But the sky should be free! The sky is my realm. I love to hover between the mountains and the clouds. I long for that freedom. When Korea is truly and completely free, i.e. when North and South are both free and open and the fortified DMZ removed, or preserved as a Peace Park, then I shall be able to do that once more. And then, if not in this life, I shall soar freely in eternity.
The Unification Church in its historical course could rightfully be evaluated as evil because it has denied the freedom of its members and taken all their money away, thereby depriving them of all the wonderful things they could do with their families, and moreover the abundant contributions of all sorts that they might have made to society otherwise. In so many different ways… In this sense, if not our members, then our children themselves will, by and large, wholeheartedly agree.
Its justification, if any, is perhaps the justification of the Holy Saints, in that, living for God and Christ, they denied themselves. They did so for God’s will, and that is great — but it is not the model for human beings in our lives. We live to be happy, not for self-denial. In this sense, the “sects” are evil because they lead human beings away from their original human nature.
If anything, we might perhaps be justified in that we are serving as the stepping stones, laying down our own lives, freedoms, and free agency and means in order that mankind may be free and happy in God’s Kingdom in time to come. Yet it is “sin” nevertheless — in that this constitutes a grievous departure from the original way of a human being.
I hope that our own and all the other sects will be punished for our violations and transgressions against human nature. And I believe the people in our world will vigorously nod in agreement. “Punishment” in this sense means “to be made to realize one’s wrongdoing.”
There are plenty of resources upon Mother Earth for humans to be warm, decently fed, clothed, sheltered, and surrounded by warm, supportive communities. Yet, because of our sins, so many are suffering all kinds of deprivations. This is, of course, a historical fact, and the legacy of our own ancestors.
When I see the picture of that cold well, dating back to the Joseon era, thinking how cold it was during the Japanese Occupation (1905~1945), I think how great a sin it was to subjugate Korea, and, although Japan by itself is a wonderful country and culture, yet they did so by exploiting and brutalizing others. In this sense, one might perhaps justify the brutal conclusion of war, if it only purchased the liberation of Korea one day sooner!
In its historical course, the U.S.A. did the same to the Native American peoples (and others too!); even recently we were instrumental in the devastation of Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan. But if America departs from God, as Alexis de Tocqueville prophesied in 1805, if America ceases to be good — then she shall cease to be great. And now the time of America’s judgment has come upon us.
I feel so sad to see how cold Korean people were, when they might have been warm and happy, and their families could have been together, instead of being scattered, divided, and bereaved.
And I could have taken to the skies, my natural home, if it were not for the exigencies of our Unification Movement, which does very wrong for the sake of the better good — quite similar to the Communists, to be honest.
Therefore, in “doing God’s will”, those who do so must also bitterly repent, for they are actually committing wrongs, and have no business justifying themselves. We are like the priest in the vintage classic “Zorro”, who, taking up arms and slashing away at bandits and intruders, would say “Father, forgive me!” We tread upon many hearts and lives in our course, and shall be obliged to backtrack and amend our many offenses — not only those against the citizens we treated rudely, and families we broke by luring their loved ones away, and even to our own souls by overriding our crying conscience on so many occasions.
I am a Son of God, you are a Daughter of God — and we have transcended the chains of sin. Our hearts abound in the free realm of God’s love in the everlasting Kingdom — while yet the world is shrouded in darkness and injustice.