Throughout history, people have anguished over the fundamental questions of human life and the universe without arriving at satisfying answers. This is because no one has understood the root principle by which humanity and the universe were originally created. To approach this topic properly, it is not enough to examine resultant reality. The fundamental question is that of the causal reality. Problems concerning human life and the universe cannot be solved without first understanding the nature of God. This chapter deals extensively with these questions.
How can we know the divine nature of the invisible God? One way to fathom His deity is by observing the universe which He created. Thus, St. Paul said:
Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. -Rom. 1:20CEV|KJ|NI
Just as a work of art displays the invisible nature of its maker in a concrete form, everything in the created universe is a substantial manifestation of some quality of the Creator's invisible, divine nature. As such, each stands in a relationship to God. Just as we can come to know the character of an artist through his works, so we can understand the nature of God by observing the diverse things of creation.
Let us begin by pointing out the common elements which are found universally throughout the natural world. Every entity possesses dual characteristics of yang (masculinity) and yin (femininity) and comes into existence only when these characteristics have formed reciprocal relationships, both within the entity and between it and other entities.
For example, subatomic particles, the basic building blocks of all matter, possess either a positive charge, a negative charge or a neutral charge formed by the neutralization of positive and negative constituents. When particles join with each other through the reciprocal relationships of their dual characteristics, they form an atom. Atoms, in turn, display either a positive or a negative valence. When the dual characteristics within one atom enter into reciprocal relationships with those in another atom, they form a molecule. Molecules formed in this manner engage in further reciprocal relationships between their dual characteristics to eventually become nourishment fit for consumption by plants and animals.
Plants propagate by means of stamen and pistil. Animals multiply and maintain their species through the relationship between males and females. According to the Bible, after God created Adam, He saw that it was not good for the man to live alone.1(Gen. 2:18)CEV|KJ|NI Only after God created Eve as Adam's female counterpart did He declare that His creations were "very good."2(Gen. 1.31)CEV|KJ|NI
Even though atoms become positive or negative ions after ionization, each still consists of a positive nucleus and negative electrons in stable unity. Similarly, each animal, whether male or female, maintains its life through the reciprocal relationships of yang and yin elements within itself. The same holds true for every plant. In people, a feminine nature is found latent in men and a masculine nature is found latent in women.
Moreover, every creation exists with correlative aspects: inside and outside, internal and external, front and rear, right and left, up and down, high and low, strong and weak, rising and falling, long and short, wide and narrow, east and west, north and south, etc. The reason for this is that everything is created to exist through the reciprocal relationships of dual characteristics. Thus, we can understand that everything requires for its existence a reciprocal relationship between the dual characteristics of yang and yin.
However, there is another pair of dual characteristics in reciprocal relationship which are even more fundamental to existence than the dual characteristics of yang and yin. Every entity possesses both an outer form and an inner quality. The visible outer form resembles the invisible inner quality. The inner quality, though invisible, possesses a certain structure which is manifested visibly in the particular outer form. The inner quality is called internal nature, and the outer form or shape is called external form. Since internal nature and external form refer to corresponding inner and outer aspects of the same entity, the external form may also be understood as a second internal nature. Therefore, the internal nature and external form together constitute dual characteristics.
Let us take human beings as an example. A human being is composed of an outer form, the body, and an inner quality, the mind. The body is a visible reflection of the invisible mind. Because the mind possesses a certain structure, the body which reflects it also takes on a particular appearance. This is the idea behind a person's character and destiny being perceived through examining his outward appearance by such methods as physiognomy or palm reading. Here, mind is the internal nature and body is the external form. Mind and body are two correlative aspects of a human being; hence, the body may be understood as a second mind. Together, they constitute the dual characteristics of a human being. Similarly, all beings exist through the reciprocal relationships between their dual characteristics of internal nature and external form.
What is the relationship between internal nature and external form? The internal nature is intangible and causal, and stands in the position of a subject partner to the external form; the external form is tangible, resultant, and stands in the position of an object partner to the internal nature. The mutual relationships between these two aspects of an entity include: internal and external, cause and result, subject partner and object partner, vertical and horizontal. Let us again use the example of a human being, whose mind and body are his internal nature and external form, respectively. The body resembles the mind and moves according to its commands in such a way as to sustain life and pursue the mind's purposes. Mind and body thus have a mutual relationship of internal and external, cause and result, subject partner and object partner, vertical and horizontal.
Similarly, all created beings, regardless of their level of complexity, possess an intangible internal nature, which corresponds to the human mind, and a tangible external form, which corresponds to the human body. Within each being, the internal nature, which is causal and subject, commands the external form. This relationship allows the individual being to exist and function purposefully as a creation of God. Animals live and move because their bodies are directed by an internal faculty corresponding to the human mind, which endows them with a certain purpose. Plants maintain their organic functions by virtue of their internal nature, which also operates like the human mind in some respects.
The human mind imparts to every person a natural inclination to join with others in harmony. Likewise, positive ions and negative ions come together to form particular molecules, because within every one of them exists a rudimentary internal nature that guides them toward that end. Electrons assemble around nuclei to form atoms because they possess an attribute of internal nature which directs them toward that purpose. According to modern science, all particles that constitute atoms are made up of energy. For energy to form particles, it, too, must possess an internal nature which directs it to assume specific forms.
Probing deeper still, we search for the Ultimate Cause which brought this energy, with its elements of internal nature and external form, into existence. This being would be the First Cause of all the myriad things in the universe. As the First Cause, it must also possess the dual characteristics of internal nature and external form, which stand in the position of subject partner to the internal natures and external forms of all beings. We call this First Cause of the universe God, and we call God's internal nature and external form the original internal nature and original external form. As St. Paul indicated, by investigating characteristics that are universally present in the diverse things of creation, we can come to know the nature of God: God is the First Cause of the entire universe and its subject partner, having the harmonious dual characteristics of original internal nature and original external form.
We have already mentioned that entities require for their existence the reciprocal relationship between the dual characteristics of yang and yin. It is only natural to surmise that God, the First Cause of all things, also exists based on the reciprocal relationship between His dual characteristics of yang and yin. The verse "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them"3(Gen. 1:27)CEV|KJ|NI supports the idea that God, as the subject partner, has dual characteristics of yang and yin in perfect harmony.
What is the relationship between the dual characteristics of internal nature and external form and the dual characteristics of yang and yin? God's original internal nature and original external form each contain the mutual relationship of original yang and original yin. Therefore, original yang and original yin are attributes of original internal nature and original external form. The relationship between yang and yin is similar to that which exists between internal nature and external form. Yang and yin thus have the following mutual relationships: internal and external, cause and result, subject partner and object partner, vertical and horizontal. For this reason, it is written in Genesis that God took a rib from the man, Adam, and created a woman, Eve, to be his helper.4(Gen. 2.22)CEV|KJ|NI In this case, the yang and yin of God were manifested in masculinity and femininity.
A human being attains perfection when he centers his life on his mind; likewise, the creation becomes complete only when God stands as its center. Hence, the universe is a perfect organic body that moves only according to God's purpose of creation. As one organic body, the universe should exist in a relationship of internal nature and external form, with God as the internal nature and the created universe as the external form. For this reason it is written in the Bible that human beings, who are the center of the universe, are created in the image of God.5(Gen. 1.27)CEV|KJ|NI Because God exists as the subject partner having the qualities of internal nature and masculinity, He created the universe as His object partner with the qualities of external form and femininity. All of this is supported by the Bible verse which states, "man . . . is the image and glory of God."6(I Cor. 11.7)CEV|KJ|NIIn recognition of God's position as the internal and masculine subject partner, we call Him "Our Father."
In summary, God is the Subject in whom the dual characteristics of original internal nature and original external form are in harmony. At the same time, God is the harmonious union of masculinity and femininity, which manifest the qualities of original internal nature and original external form, respectively. In relation to the universe, God is the subject partner having the qualities of internal nature and masculinity.
We have learned that every creation is God's substantial object partner, formed in His likeness as a discrete projection of His dual characteristics. God exists as the incorporeal subject partner to all beings. Human beings are object partners embodied at the level of image, and the rest of creation are object partners embodied at the level of symbol. These object partners are called individual embodiments of truth, in image and symbol.
Individual embodiments of truth are discrete manifestations of the dual characteristics of God. Therefore, they can be distinguished broadly into two classes: those of yang qualities which resemble the original internal nature and masculinity of God, and those of yin qualities which resemble the original external form and femininity of God. Although individual embodiments of truth belong to either of these two classes, since they are all substantial object partners to God - resembling His original internal nature and original external form - they each possess within themselves both internal nature and external form, and likewise both yang and yin.
In light of our understanding of the dual characteristics, the relationship between God and the universe can be summarized thus: The universe as a whole is a substantial object partner to God. It is composed of individual embodiments of truth, each a unique manifestation of the dual characteristics of God at either the level of image or of symbol, as governed by the Principle of Creation. The myriad qualities of God, in their duality, are apportioned into diverse human beings, each an incarnate object partner at the level of image. These qualities are also apportioned into all the diverse things of creation, each an embodied object partner at the level of symbol. The relationship between God and the universe is similar to that between internal nature and external form. It is a mutual relationship like that between dual characteristics: internal and external, cause and result, vertical and horizontal, subject partner and object partner, and so forth.
Finally, from the viewpoint of the Principle of Creation, let us investigate the metaphysical concept at the root of East Asian philosophy which is based on the Book of Changes (I Ching). There, the origin of the universe is the Great Ultimate (Ultimate Void). >From the Great Ultimate arose yang and yin, from yang and yin came forth the Five Agents - metal, wood, water, fire and earth - and from the Five Agents all things came into existence.7 Yang and yin together are called the Way (Tao), or as the Book of Changes states, "One yang and one yin: this is the Way."8 The Way is traditionally defined as the Word. To put all this together, from the Great Ultimate arose yang and yin, or the Word, and all things came into being based on the Word. Accordingly, the Great Ultimate is the First Cause of all existing beings, the integral nucleus and harmonious subject partner of yang and yin.
It is written in the Gospel of John that "the Word was with God, and the Word was God,"9(John 1:1-3)CEV|KJ|NIand that all things were made through the Word. Comparing this to the metaphysics rooted in the Book of Changes, we can surmise that the Great Ultimate, as the harmonious source of yang and yin or the Word, is none other than God who, as we have seen, is the harmonious subject partner of dual characteristics. According to the Principle of Creation, the fact that everything created through the Word has dual characteristics shows that the Word itself consists of dual characteristics. Consequently, the claim made in the Book of Changes that yang and yin together are the Word is valid.
However, this East Asian metaphysics observes the universe exclusively from the viewpoint of yang and yin while failing to recognize that all things also possess internal nature and external form. Therefore, although it reveals that the Great Ultimate is the subject partner of harmonious yang and yin, it fails to show that the Great Ultimate is also the subject partner of harmonious original internal nature and original external form. Hence, it does not comprehend that the Great Ultimate is a God with personality.
We have learned that the root concept of East Asian philosophy as based on the Book of Changes can be fully elucidated only with the help of the Principle of Creation. In recent years, Oriental medicine has become recognized to an increasing degree throughout the world. Its success is due to the fact that its founding principles, which focus upon the concepts of yang and yin, are in accordance with the Principle of Creation.
God, the Creator of all things, is the absolute reality, eternal, self-existent and transcendent of time and space. The fundamental energy of God's being is also eternal, self-existent and absolute. It is the origin of all energies and forces that allow created beings to exist. We call this fundamental energy universal prime energy.
Through the agency of universal prime energy, the subject and object elements of every entity form a common base and enter into interaction. This interaction, in turn, generates all the forces the entity needs for existence, multiplication and action. The interaction generating these forces through this process is called give and take action. Universal prime energy and the forces generated by give and take action are in a reciprocal relationship of cause and result, internal and external, and subject partner and object partner. Universal prime energy is a vertical force, while the forces generated by give and take action are horizontal forces.
Let us examine in detail God and His creation in terms of universal prime energy and give and take action. God's universal prime energy directs His eternal dual characteristics to form a common base for their mutual relationship. They then engage in give and take action. Based on the forces generated by this give and take action, the dual characteristics construct a foundation for their eternal reciprocation. This is the foundation for God's existence, upon which God eternally exists and generates all forces needed to create and sustain the universe.
In the created universe, the dual characteristics that make up each being are empowered by universal prime energy to establish a common base. They then engage in give and take action. Based on the forces generated by this give and take action, the dual characteristics construct a foundation for their continued reciprocation. This becomes the foundation for the existence of each individual being, upon which the being becomes an object partner to God and is able to generate all forces necessary for its continued existence.
For example, atoms come into existence when electrons assemble about a nucleus and engage in electromagnetic interaction, which is a type of give and take action. When positive ions and negative ions perform give and take action, they form molecules and produce chemical reactions. The give and take action between positive and negative electrical charges underlies all electrical phenomena.
The circulation of nutrients between xylem and phloem is one of the give and take actions in plants that sustain their life functions and promote their growth. The give and take action between stamen and pistil is the dominant means for the reproduction of plant life. Animals multiply and maintain their species through the give and take action between male and female. Animal and plant life co-exist through such give and take actions as the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide and the cooperation between bees and flowers.
With respect to the heavenly bodies, the solar system exists based on the give and take action between the sun and the planets. Their various movements give structure to the universe. The earth and the moon also maintain their rotations and their revolution in a set orbit through their give and take action.
The human body maintains its life through the give and take actions between arteries and veins, inhalation and exhalation, sympathetic and parasympathetic nerves, and so forth. The give and take action between mind and body enables an individual to carry out activities which further the purpose of life. The give and take actions between husband and wife in a family, among people in a society, between the government and citizens in a nation, and among the nations of the world are essential for them to live together in harmony and peace.
However evil a person may be, the force of his conscience, which impels him toward a virtuous life, is always active within his inner self. This is true for all people of all ages and places. No one can quell the force of conscience, which is powerfully at work even without one's conscious awareness. The minute a person commits an evil act, he immediately feels pangs of conscience. If the function of the conscience were absent in fallen people, God's providence of restoration would be impossible. How is this force of conscience generated? Since all forces are produced by give and take action, the conscience cannot generate the force needed for its operation all by itself. That is to say, the conscience can operate only when it forms a common base with some subject partner and engages in give and take action with it. The ultimate subject partner of our conscience is God.
The human Fall, in essence, severed our relationship with God. Rather than attaining oneness with God, our ancestors joined in a reciprocal relationship with Satan, thereby becoming one with him. Jesus was the only begotten Son of God; he attained oneness with God through perfect give and take action. When we unite with Jesus in a perfect reciprocal relationship, we can recover our original God-given nature. We can cultivate a give and take relationship with God and become one with Him. This is how Jesus serves as the mediator for fallen people; he is our way, truth and life. Jesus came with love and sacrifice to give all that he had to humankind, even offering his life. If we turn to him in faith, we will "not perish but have eternal life."10(John 3:16)CEV|KJ|NI
Christianity is a religion of love. It strives through love and sacrifice to open the path to restore the horizontal relationships of give and take between people in the love of Christ. On this horizontal foundation of love, the way is opened to restore our vertical relationship of give and take with God. In truth, this was the main purpose of all the teachings and deeds of Jesus. For example, Jesus said:
Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get. -Matt. 7:1-2CEV|KJ|NI
So whatever you wish that men would do to you, do so to them; for this is the law and the prophets. -Matt. 7:12CEV|KJ|NI
So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven. -Matt. 10:32CEV|KJ|NI
He who receives a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward, and he who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward. -Matt. 10:41CEV|KJ|NI
And whoever gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he shall not lose his reward. -Matt. 10:42CEV|KJ|NI
The process of God's creation begins when the dual characteristics within God form a common base through the prompting of His universal prime energy. As they engage in give and take action, they generate a force which engenders multiplication. This force projects the dual characteristics into discrete substantial object partners, each relating to God as its center. These object partners to God then assume the position of subject partner and object partner to each other as they are prompted by the universal prime energy to form a common base and engage in give and take action. They then join together in one harmonious union to form a new object partner to God. This whole process - in which out of God, the Origin, two entities are separately manifested and reunited in oneness - is called origin-division-union action.
As a result of origin-division-union action, four positions are formed: the origin at the center, the subject partner and the object partner (distinct substantial object partners to the origin in the pattern of its dual characteristics), and their union. Any one of the four positions may assume the position of subject partner and engage the other three as its object partners, forming a communion of three object partners. When each of the four then acts as the subject partner and enters into give and take with the other three revolving around it, they fulfill the three object purpose.
When through origin-division-union action, the origin, the subject partner and object partner projected from the origin, and their union all fulfill the three object purpose, the four position foundation is established.
The four position foundation is the root of the number four. It is also the root of the number three, because it is the fulfillment of the three object purpose. The four position foundation is realized by God, husband and wife, and children; they complete the three stages of origin-division-union action. Hence, the four position foundation is the root of the principle of three stages. Furthermore, each of the four positions in the four position foundation takes on three object partners in fulfilling the three object purpose. In total there are twelve object partners; hence, it is the root of the number twelve. The four position foundation is the fundamental foundation of goodness. It is the realization of God's purpose of creation. It is the fundamental foundation for the life of all beings, providing all the forces necessary for their existence and enabling God to abide in them. Therefore, the four position foundation is God's eternal purpose of creation.
All beings which have completed the four position foundation by fulfilling the three object purpose through origin-division-union action move in circular (elliptical) or spherical paths. As a result, they exist in three dimensions. Let us now investigate the reason for this.
Through origin-division-union action, the dual characteristics of God are projected to form two distinct and substantial object partners, which interact with each other as subject partner and object partner. The object partner responds to the subject partner to form a common base and begins give and take action around the subject partner. As they are held in balance by the force of giving (centrifugal) and the force of receiving (centripetal), the object partner revolves around the subject partner in a circular motion, and thus they become harmonious and unified. In the same manner, the subject partner becomes an object partner to God, revolving around God and thus attaining oneness with Him. When the object partner becomes completely one with its subject partner, their union can stand before God as a new object partner resembling His dual characteristics. Moreover, the way for any object partner to stand as an object partner before God is by making oneness with its subject partner.
In this union of subject partner and object partner, the subject partner and object partner are themselves composed of dual characteristics; these, by the same principle of give and take action, carry on their own circular motions. Thus, we see circular motions of give and take action within both the subject partner and object partner, which are simultaneously engaged in the greater circular motion within their union. Although there are moments when the two levels of circular motion among subject partners and object partners may happen to have orbits on the same plane, in general, because the angle of revolution around the subject partner is constantly changing, this circular movement becomes a spherical movement. In short, all beings which have completed the four position foundation carry on circular and spherical movement, and hence their mode of existence always becomes three-dimensional.
Let us take the solar system as an example. The planets, standing as object partners to the sun, each form a common base and engage in give and take action with the sun through centripetal and centrifugal forces. Revolving around the sun in elliptical orbits, the sun and planets attain harmony and oneness and form the solar system. At the same time the planet Earth, as a composite body of dual characteristics, rotates on its own axis. This is also true of the sun and the rest of the planets; they are in continuous rotation on their own axes, because they too are composite bodies of dual characteristics. The orbits caused by give and take action in the solar system do not occupy exactly the same plane. Rather, due to the varied angles of their orbits and rotations, the solar system exhibits spherical motion in three dimensions. Likewise, all heavenly bodies exist in three dimensions by virtue of their circular and spherical movements. When the countless heavenly bodies carry on give and take action with each other, they form one body and thereby give structure to the universe. The universe exists in three dimensions as, governed by the same principle, its elements engage in spherical movements.
When an electron forms a common base with a proton and engages in give and take action, it revolves around the proton in a circular motion. Thus, they unite and form an atom (Hydrogen). The electron and the proton are themselves composed of dual characteristics that cause them to spin in continuous rotation. Therefore, the circular motion arising from the give and take action between the proton and electron is not limited to an orbit on one plane but, by continuously altering its angle of revolution, creates a spherical movement. Through spherical movement the atom thus exists in three dimensions. By the same token, the magnetic force between positive and negative poles causes electrically charged particles to precess in spherical movement.
Let us consider the example of human beings. As the object partner to the mind, the body establishes a common base with the mind and engages in give and take action with it. Figuratively speaking, the body then revolves about the mind and attains complete oneness with it. If and when the mind stands as an object partner before God and revolves around Him, resonating in oneness with Him, and when the body becomes one with this mind, the individual will resemble God's dual characteristics and thus stand as God's embodied object partner. Thereupon, the person fulfills the purpose of creation. The mind and body are also each composed of dual characteristics, so they carry on continuous movement within themselves. Thus, the circular movement produced through the give and take dynamic between mind and body ceaselessly alters the angle of revolution around God and becomes spherical. People who have realized the purpose of creation exist as three-dimensional beings who always lead their lives in spherical relationships centered on God. This is how they can attain mastery even over the incorporeal world.11(cf. Creation 6.2)
When the circular movement of the subject partner and the object partner on a single plane becomes a spherical movement in a three-dimensional orbit, the dynamism and creativity of the universe unfolds. Variations in each orbit's distance, shape, state, direction, angle, force and velocity are manifest as the beauty of creation in its infinite variety.
Just as all beings have internal nature and external form, there is a type of spherical motion that corresponds to internal nature and a type that corresponds to external form. Likewise, there is a center of motion that corresponds to internal nature and a center that corresponds to external form. These two centers have the same relationship as that between internal nature and external form.
What is the ultimate center of all these spherical movements? Human beings are the center of all created things, which are embodied object partners to God's dual characteristics in symbol. God is the center of human beings, who are created as His embodied object partners in image. Consequently, the ultimate center of all spherical movements in the universe is God.
Let us consider this further. Every object partner to God contains a subject partner and an object partner within itself. The center of their relationship is the subject partner, so the center of the union between subject partner and object partner is also the subject partner. Since God is the center of the subject partner, He is also the ultimate center of the union. As discussed above, the three substantial object partners to God (subject partner, object partner, union) also form common bases with each other. As each of the three takes the central position, and becomes one with the others through give and take action with God as their ultimate center, they fulfill the three object purpose and establish the four position foundation. Accordingly, the ultimate center of the four position foundation is God.
All things that have established four position foundations in this manner are individual embodiments of truth. As mentioned before, individual embodiments of truth are divided broadly into individual embodiments of truth in image (human beings) and individual embodiments of truth in symbol (the rest of the creation). The universe is composed of countless individual embodiments of truth, mutually related to each other in good order from those of the lowest level to those of the highest level. Among them all, human beings occupy the highest level.
Individual embodiments of truth revolve spherically around each other, with those of a lower level acting as object partners to those of a higher level. Thus, the center of any spherical movement is an individual embodiment of truth of a higher level which acts as the subject partner. The centers of the countless symbolic individual embodiments of truth are interconnected from the lowest to the highest. The highest centers are human beings, who are individual embodiments of truth in image.
Let us examine the centrality of human beings. Science holds that elementary particles are the most basic building blocks of matter and explains that they are composed of energy. Considering the purpose of existence of the individual embodiments of truth that make up the material universe at different levels, we can surmise: energy exists in order to form particles, particles exist to form atoms, atoms to form molecules, molecules to form matter, and matter exists for the creation of all the individual entities in the universe. Likewise, the activity of energy is for the purpose of forming particles, the activity of particles is for atoms, the activity of atoms is for molecules, the activity of molecules is for matter, and the activity of matter is for the purpose of constructing the universe.
What is the purpose of the universe? What is its center? The answer to both questions is none other than human beings. This is why God, after creating human beings, commanded them to have dominion over the universe.12(Gen. 1:28)CEV|KJ|NIIf there were no people to appreciate the universe, then it could be likened to a museum without any visitors. The articles on display in a museum attain their true value and are cherished as historical relics only when there are people who appreciate, love and take delight in them. Their relationship with human beings gives value to their existence. If there were no one to appreciate them, then what meaning would their existence have? The same holds true for the universe, whose lords are human beings.
The diverse things in creation enter into mutual relationships with a common purpose when human beings discover the source and nature of matter, and when they identify and classify plants and animals of the water, land and air, and all the stars in the sky. Their common purpose is realized when they are assimilated into the human body as elements essential for people to maintain their physiological functions, and when they participate in the construction of a comfortable living environment for people. In these and other ways, human beings stand as the center of the created universe in terms of its external form.
In addition, people relate to the universe from their position as the internal center. While the relationships discussed above are physical relationships, here we consider mental or spiritual relationships. The human body, though consisting of matter, fully responds physiologically to the emotion, intellect and will of the human mind. This demonstrates that matter has within itself elements which resonate with emotion, intellect and will - elements which constitute the internal nature of matter. This is the reason all things in the universe respond to human emotion, intellect and will, albeit to different degrees. We become intoxicated with the beauty of the natural world and experience the rapture of mystical union. We experience this because we are the center of the internal natures of all things in the natural world. Human beings are thus created as the center of the universe, and the place where God and human beings become completely one is the center of the cosmos.
Let us discuss from another viewpoint how human beings are the center of the cosmos, which is composed of both the spirit world and the physical world. Every human being embodies all the elements in the cosmos. Yet, as we discussed earlier, everything in the cosmos can be divided broadly into subject partners and object partners. Had Adam, the first human ancestor, reached perfection, he would have embodied all the subject elements in the things of creation. Had Eve attained perfection, she would have embodied all the object elements in the things of creation. God created Adam and Eve to have dominion over the natural world. Growing together toward perfection, Adam was to become the king of all the subject elements in creation and Eve was to become the queen of all the object elements. If they had then become one as husband and wife, they would have become the center that could rule the entire universe consisting of subject partners and object partners.
Human beings are created to be the center of harmony of the whole cosmos. If Adam and Eve had attained perfection and united as husband and wife, it would have meant the joining into oneness of the two centers of the dual characteristics of all beings. Had Adam and Eve moved together in harmony and attained oneness, the whole cosmos with its dual characteristics would have danced in harmony. The place where Adam and Eve become perfectly one in heart and body as husband and wife is also the place where God, the subject partner giving love, and human beings, the object partners returning beauty, become united. This is the center of goodness where the purpose of creation is fulfilled. Here God, our Parent, draws near and abides within His perfected children and rests peacefully for eternity. This center of goodness is the object partner to God's eternal love, where God can be stimulated with joy for eternity. This is the place where the Word of God is incarnated and brought to fulfillment. It is the center of truth and the center of the original mind which guides us to pursue the purpose of creation.
Consequently, the entire universe will perform a spherical movement with a unified purpose when it is founded on the four position foundation established by a perfected man and woman who join as husband and wife centered on God. Tragically, the universe lost its center when human beings fell. This is why St. Paul wrote that the creation has been groaning in travail while longing for the children of God.13(Rom. 8:19-22)CEV|KJ|NICreation awaits the people who have restored their original nature to appear and become its center.
We have learned that the four position foundation, built upon the three object purpose through the origin-division-union action, proceeds in spherical movement around God and becomes one with God. This is the fundamental foundation for all beings to receive God's governance and be provided with all the powers necessary for life. In a world where God's purpose of creation has been fulfilled, all individual beings embody God's original internal nature and original external form and initiate spherical movements to build the foundation for God's governance. God is thus omnipresent.
For living things to propagate their kind they must reproduce, and this multiplication takes place through origin-division-union action which is built upon good interactions. For example, in plants, seeds develop into flowers with stamens and pistils; through pollination they produce their seed and propagate their kind. Male and female animals mature, engage in courtship, mate and bear offspring. All cells in animals and plants divide through give and take action.
When the body acts according to the will of the mind, and the mind and body thus engage in give and take action, the individual will live a purposeful life. This individual will then attract like-minded people. As these companions work together productively, their group will grow. It may be said that the universe is formed by the multiplication of myriad substantial manifestations of God's original internal nature and original external form through their give and take action in the pursuit of the purpose of creation.
For any being to exist, energy is required, and energy can be produced only through give and take action. However, nothing can reciprocate without a partner. To generate the forces necessary for existence, a being must contain dual characteristics, a subject partner and an object partner, which can engage in give and take action.
A movement in a straight line cannot be sustained forever. For anything to have an eternal nature it must move in a circle; give and take action between a subject partner and an object partner is necessary for any circular motion. This is true even for God; having dual characteristics allows Him to live eternally. In order for God's creation to resemble His eternal nature and be His eternal object partner, it likewise must be composed of dual characteristics. Similarly, time maintains its perpetuity through its periodic cycles.
It is recorded in the Bible that after God completed each day of creation, He saw that it was good.14(Gen. 1:4-31)CEV|KJ|NIThis suggests that God wanted His creations to be object partners embodying goodness that He might take delight in them. How can the creation give God the greatest joy?
God created human beings as the final step in creating the universe. He created them in His image, in the likeness of His internal nature and external form, and gave them sensibility to all feelings and emotions because it was His intention to share joy with them. After their creation, God blessed Adam and Eve:
Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth. -Gen. 1:28CEV|KJ|NI
These are the three great blessings: to be fruitful (mature and ready to bear fruit), multiply and have dominion over the creation. Had Adam and Eve obeyed this divine mandate and built the Kingdom of Heaven, there is no doubt that God would have felt the greatest joy as His sons and daughters rejoiced in the world of His ideal.
How can God's three great blessings be fulfilled? They can be realized only when the four position foundation, which is the fundamental foundation of creation, has been established. The three great blessings are fulfilled when the whole creation, including human beings, completes the four position foundation with God as the center. This is the Kingdom of Heaven, where ultimate goodness is realized and God feels the greatest joy. This is, in fact, the very purpose for which God created the universe.
The ultimate purpose of the universe, with human beings at its center, is to return joy to God. All entities have dual purposes. As was explained earlier, every entity has dual centers of movement, one of internal nature and another of external form. These centers pursue corresponding purposes - for the sake of the whole and for the sake of the individual - whose relationship is the same as that between internal nature and external form. These dual purposes relate to each other as cause and result, internal and external, subject partner and object partner. In God's ideal, there cannot be any individual purpose which does not support the whole purpose, nor can there be any whole purpose that does not guarantee the interests of the individual. The infinite variety of beings in the universe form one vast organic body interwoven by these dual purposes.
To understand more precisely the issues concerning God's purpose of creation, let us first examine how joy is produced. Joy is not produced by an individual alone. Joy arises when we have an object partner in which our internal nature and external form are reflected and developed. Our object partner helps us to feel our own internal nature and external form through the stimulation it gives. This object partner may be intangible or it may be substantial. For example, an artist's object partner may be an idea in his mind, or the finished painting or sculpture which substantiates that idea. When he visualizes his idea or beholds his work, he is stimulated to feel his own internal nature and external form reflected in it and feels joy and satisfaction. When his idea alone is the object partner, it is not as stimulating, nor is the joy that it brings as profound, as that from a finished work. This nature of human beings originates in God's nature. In like manner, God feels the fullness of joy when He is stimulated by His substantial object partners to feel His original internal nature and original external form through them.
It was explained earlier that when the Kingdom of Heaven is realized - through the fulfillment of the three great blessings and the establishment of the four position foundation - it becomes the good object partner that gives joy to God. Let us investigate how the Kingdom becomes God's good object partner.
The key to God's first blessing is the perfection of individual character. An individual's mind and body are discrete projections and object partners of God's dual characteristics. In order for an individual to perfect his character, he must form a four position foundation within himself whereby his mind and body become one through give and take action with God as their center. Such individuals become the temples of God,15(I Cor. 3:16)CEV|KJ|NIachieve complete oneness with Him,16(John 14:20)CEV|KJ|NI and acquire a divine nature. They experience the Heart of God as if it were their own. Hence, they understand His Will and live fully attuned to it. When a person abides in the state of individual perfection, he lives as the substantial object partner to his mind. Because the center of his mind is God, he also lives as the substantial object partner to God. Both the mind and God rejoice as they experience their internal nature and external form through the stimulation which their object partners give them. Accordingly, when people realize God's first blessing, they become God's beloved who inspire Him with joy. Sharing all the feelings of God as their own, they would never commit any sinful acts that would cause God grief. This means they would never fall.
God's second blessing was to be fulfilled by Adam and Eve after they had achieved individual perfection as object partners to God, each manifesting an aspect of God's dual characteristics. In order to construct the four position foundation in their family, Adam and Eve should have joined in loving oneness as husband and wife and raised children. This would have been the fulfillment of the second blessing. A family or society that has formed the four position foundation in line with God's ideal is patterned after the image of a perfect individual. It thus becomes the substantial object partner to the individual who lives in oneness with God, and consequently, it also becomes the substantial object partner to God. The individual feels joy, and likewise God feels joy, when each perceives in this family or community the manifestation of his own internal nature and external form. When God's second blessing is fulfilled, this family or community also becomes a good object partner giving joy to God.
Before we examine how a person upon attaining the third blessing establishes a good object partner giving joy to God, we must first investigate the relationship between human beings and the creation from the viewpoint of internal nature and external form.
Prior to creating human beings, God created the natural world by expressing partial reflections of the internal nature and external form He had conceived for human beings. Consequently, a human being contains within himself the sum total of the essences of all things. This is the reason he is called the microcosm of the cosmos.
When God created living things, He began with creatures of a lower order. Over the course of time, He created animals of a higher order with more complex biological functions, culminating with human beings at the highest level. Therefore, human beings contain all the elements, structures and qualities found in animals. For example, human vocal cords are so versatile that they can imitate virtually any animal sound. Because the human body contains all the beautiful curves and lines of the creation, an artist hones his skills by drawing nude models.
Although human beings and plants have different structures and functions, they are similar in that they both are composed of cells. All the elements, structures and characteristics of plants can be found in human beings. For example, a plant's leaf corresponds to the human lung in appearance and function. As leaves absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, the human lung absorbs oxygen. Branches and stems of plants correspond to the human circulatory system, which distributes nourishment to the entire body; the xylem and phloem correspond to human arteries and veins. The roots of a plant correspond to the human stomach and intestines, which absorb nutrients.
Human beings were fashioned from clay, water and air; consequently they contain elements of the mineral kingdom. Moreover, the earth displays a similarity to the structure of the human body: the earth's crust is covered with plants, its underground waterways exist inside the substrata, and beneath it all lies a molten core surrounded by a rocky mantle. This resembles the structure of the human body, which has skin covered with hair, blood vessels running inside the musculature, and marrow lying deeper still within the bones.
The meaning of God's third blessing is the perfection of a human being's dominion over the natural world. To fulfill this blessing, the four position foundation of dominion must be established centered on God. Human beings and the natural world, which are the substantial object partners of God at the level of image and symbol respectively, must share love and beauty to become completely one.17(cf. Creation 5.2.3)
The natural world is an object partner which exhibits human internal nature and external form in diverse ways. Hence, ideal human beings receive stimulation from the world of nature. Sensing their own internal nature and external form displayed throughout the creation, they feel immense joy. God also delights when He experiences the stimulation of His original internal nature and original external form from the universe; this is possible when it becomes His third object partner through the harmonious union of human beings and the natural world. Therefore, when human beings realize God's third blessing, the entire universe becomes yet another good object partner giving joy to God. Had God's purpose of creation been realized in this way, an ideal world without even a trace of sin would have been established on the earth. We call this world the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. When life in the Kingdom of Heaven on earth comes to a close, people are to enter the spirit world and naturally enjoy eternal life in the Kingdom of Heaven there.
Based on the discussion thus far, we can understand that the Kingdom of Heaven resembles a person who has achieved individual perfection, taking after God's original internal nature and external form. In an individual, the mind's command is transmitted to the whole body through the central nervous system, causing the body to act with one purpose. Likewise, in the Kingdom of Heaven, God's direction will be conveyed to all His children through the True Parents of humankind, guiding everyone to live as one.
How is a being's original created value determined? The value of an entity may be determined by the relationship between its purpose of existence and the desire that a human being has for it. To be more precise, the value of an entity intended at its creation is not fixed as an inherent attribute. Rather, it is established through the mutual relationship between the purpose of the entity according to God's ideal of creation, and people's original desire to treasure it and bring out its true worth. It finds its true value when it participates as an object partner in a God-centered four position foundation by relating with a person through give and take action and by their union becoming the third object partner to God.
What sets the standard by which the original value of an entity is determined? Since its original value is determined when it participates in a four position foundation, and since the center of this four position foundation is God, it is God who sets the standard for its value. Since God is absolute, the original value of an object partner determined in relation to this standard set by God must also be absolute.
Consider a rose; how is its original beauty determined? It is determined when the purpose for which God created the flower and the divinely given human desire to appreciate and bring out its beauty are fulfilled together. To put it another way, an ideal person feels the fullness of joy when his desire to pursue beauty is satisfied by the emotional stimulation that the flower gives him. At that moment, the flower manifests its original beauty. The flower's beauty becomes absolute when it achieves its inherent purpose, which is to give complete joy to its subject partner. The human desire to appreciate the beauty of the flower is an instance of the desire to feel aspects of one's own internal nature and external form through an object partner. The moment the flower's purpose for which it was created and the human desire to bring out its value are fulfilled, the subject partner and the object partner enter a state of harmonious oneness.
An entity attains its true value when it and a human being, its subject partner, enter a state of harmonious oneness and form the third object partner to God in the four position foundation. Through this process, the true values of all things are determined absolutely, based on their relationship with the absolute standard of value set by God. Until now, no object partner's value could become absolute; it has remained relative because its relationship with fallen people was not based on God's ideal of creation but was based on satanic purpose and desire.
The human mind has three faculties: emotion, intellect and will. The human body acts in response to the commands of the mind. When the body responds to the mind's emotion, intellect and will, its actions pursue the values of beauty, truth and goodness respectively. God is the subject partner to the human mind; hence, He is also the subject partner to human emotion, intellect and will. Desiring to realize his original value, a person responds to the perfect emotion, perfect intellect and perfect will of God through his mind, and acts accordingly through his body. Thus, he manifests the values of original beauty, original truth and original goodness.
When two entities, discrete manifestations of God's dual characteristics, form a common base and seek to unite as the third object partner to God and establish a four position foundation, they will engage in give and take action. In accomplishing this, the emotional force that the subject partner gives to the object partner is called love, and the emotional force that the object partner returns to the subject partner is called beauty. The force of love is active, and the stimulation of beauty is passive.
In the relationship between God and human beings, God gives love as the subject partner and human beings return beauty as object partners. In the relationship between a man and a woman, the man is the subject partner, giving love, while the woman is the object partner, returning beauty. In the universe, people are the subject partners who give love to the natural world, and the natural world returns beauty as an object partner. However, when the subject partner and object partner become completely one in harmony, love is found within beauty and beauty is found within love. This is because when a subject partner and object partner become one in a circular movement, the subject partner sometimes acts as an object partner, and the object partner sometimes acts as a subject partner.
In interpersonal relationships, the beauty that a subordinate returns in response to the love of a superior is called loyalty, and the beauty that children return in response to the love of their parents is called filial piety. The beauty that a wife returns in response to the love of her husband is called fidelity. The purpose of love and beauty is to enable two wholesome beings, springing forth from God, to establish the four position foundation and realize the purpose of creation. By sharing love and beauty with each other, they join in harmonious oneness, becoming the third object partner to God.
Next, let us investigate the nature of God's love. Had Adam and Eve attained perfection, each becoming a substantial object partner to God resembling one of His dual characteristics, they would have joined as husband and wife and raised children in a godly family. In so doing, they would have experienced three kinds of original love with their three object partners: parental love, conjugal love and children's love. (The love of the first object partner, the love of the second object partner, and the love of the third object partner.) Only then would they complete the three object purpose and form the four position foundation. This would be the fulfillment of their purpose of creation.
God's love is the subject to the various kinds of love flowing through the four position foundation. Therefore, God's love is manifested through the various loves of the three object partners. God's love is the underlying force which breathes life into the four position foundation. Accordingly, the four position foundation is the vessel of perfect beauty through which we can receive and enjoy the fullness of God's love. It is also the home of perfect joy and the wellspring of goodness. Upon this ground, the purpose of creation is complete.
An act or the result of an act is considered good when it fulfills God's purpose of creation. This takes place when a subject partner and object partner unite through the harmonious and spirited give and take of love and beauty, become the third object partner to God, and form the four position foundation. On the other hand, an act or its result is called evil when it violates God's purpose of creation by forming a four position foundation under the dominion of Satan.
For example, when an individual realizes God's first blessing and fulfills his true purpose, the actions to this end are good and the individual is good. These actions involve the free-flowing give and take of love and beauty between the mind and the body so that they unite in the way of God and form the individual four position foundation. When Adam and Eve achieve the second blessing by building a family that realizes God's purpose, their actions to this end are good and the family they form is good. These actions include joining as a couple in the way of God through the harmonious and passionate sharing of love and beauty, bearing and raising children, and thus establishing the family four position foundation. Moreover, when a perfect individual achieves the third blessing, the actions to this end are good and all things that he nurtures are good. By relating with the natural world as his second self and by becoming completely one with it, a union is formed which becomes the third object partner to God, thus constructing the four position foundation of dominion. Conversely, when a person forms a four position foundation under the bondage of Satan and realizes a purpose contrary to God's three blessings, this act or its result is called evil.
Righteousness refers to that quality in a person which leads him to pursue goodness and further its purpose. Unrighteousness refers to that quality in a person which leads him to pursue evil and further its satanic purpose. A righteous life is absolutely necessary for the attainment of goodness.
According to the Genesis account of the creation of the universe, amidst the primordial state of chaos, void and darkness, God created light. God next separated the waters under the firmament from the waters above the firmament. He then divided the land from the ocean, created plants, fish, birds and mammals, and finally made humankind. All of this took a period of six "days." From this account, we can surmise that the process of creating the universe took some period of time represented by six days.
The process of creation recorded in the Bible bears some resemblance to the theory of the origin and formation of the universe as described by modern science. According to modern science, the universe began as expanding plasma. Out of the chaos and void of space, the heavenly bodies formed and gave light. As the molten earth cooled, volcanic eruptions filled the sky with a firmament of water. The land rose and the water fell as rain, creating the continents and oceans. Next, the lower plants and animals came into being. Then came fish, birds, mammals, and finally humankind, in that order. The age of the earth is calculated to be several billion years. Considering that the account of the creation of the universe recorded in the Bible thousands of years ago nearly coincides with the findings of modern scientific research, we are reassured that this biblical record must be a revelation from God.
The universe did not suddenly spring forth complete, without regard to the flow of time. In fact, its origin and development took an enormous length of time. Therefore, the biblical period of six days for the completion of the universe is not to be reckoned by the number of literal sunrises and sunsets. It symbolizes six ordered periods of time in the creation process.
The fact that it took six days, that is, six time periods, to complete the creation of the universe implies that some period of time was also necessary to complete the creation of each of the individual entities that make up the universe. Furthermore, the way the Genesis account reckons each day reveals something about the passage of time required for the creation of an entity. The account has a unusual way of numbering each day of creation. When the first day of creation was completed, it states, "There was evening and there was morning, one day."18(Gen. 1:5)CEV|KJ|NI One would think that the arrival of the morning after the passage of an evening and a night would be reckoned as the second day, yet it is referred to as the first day. The Bible states "one day" to show that a created being must pass through a growing period, symbolized by the night, before it reaches perfection in the morning. Then, as it greets this new morning, it can step forward and realize its ideal of creation.
All phenomena occurring in the universe bear fruit only after the lapse of a certain interval of time. All things are designed to reach completion only after passing through a set growing period.
The universe unfolds and manifests God's original internal nature and original external form based on mathematical principles. Hence, we can infer that one aspect of God's nature is mathematical. God is the one absolute reality in whom the dual characteristics interact in harmony; therefore, He is a Being of the number three. All created beings, having been conceived in the likeness of God, manifest their existence, movement and growth through a course of three stages.
The four position foundation, which is God's purpose of creation, was to be completed through a three-stage process: the origin in God, the marriage of Adam and Eve, and the multiplication of children. In order to establish the four position foundation and carry on circular movement, a being must first perform the three-stage origin-division-union action and fulfill the three object purpose, with each position engaged in interaction with the other three. It is like what is needed for something to stand firm: it must be supported by at least three points. Accordingly, everything reaches perfection by passing through three ordered stages of growth: the formation stage, the growth stage and the completion stage.
In the natural world, many things appear in threes. It contains three kingdoms: mineral, plant and animal. Matter exists in three states: gas, liquid and solid. Most plants are composed of three parts: roots, branches or stems, and leaves. Animals consist of head, body and limbs.
There are also many examples of the number three in the Bible. Human beings could not fulfill the purpose of their existence because they fell without completing the three stages of the growing period. Hence, in their renewed efforts to realize their purpose, human beings must pass through these three stages. In the providence of restoration, God has worked to reclaim the number three, which explains why there are many records in the Bible of the number three and dispensations based on the number three: the Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit); the three levels of Paradise; the three archangels; the three levels of Noah's ark; the three flights of the dove from the ark after the flood; the three offerings of Abraham; and the three-day journey before the sacrifice of Isaac. At the time of Moses there were: the three-day plague of darkness, the three days of purification at the start of the Exodus, the three forty-year periods for the journey to Canaan, and the three days of purification under Joshua's leadership just prior to crossing the Jordan River. In the life of Jesus we see: three decades of private life followed by three years of public ministry, the three wise men from the East who brought three gifts, the three disciples, the three temptations, the three prayers in the garden of Gethsemane, Peter's three denials, the three hours of darkness at the crucifixion, and Jesus' resurrection after three days in the tomb.
When did the first human ancestors fall? They fell during their growing period, when they were still immature. If human beings fell after they had attained perfection, then there would be no basis for belief in the omnipotence of God. If human beings fell after they had become perfect embodiments of goodness, then goodness itself would be imperfect. Accordingly, we would be forced to conclude that God, as the source of goodness, is also imperfect.
It is written in the Book of Genesis that God warned Adam and Eve, "Of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die."19(Gen. 2:17)CEV|KJ|NI They had a choice to either ignore God's warning and lose their lives or to heed the warning and live. The fact that they had the potential either to fall or to become perfect demonstrates that they were still in a state of immaturity. The universe was designed to reach perfection after a certain growing period, described in the Bible as six days. As one of God's creations, human beings are also bound to this principle.
At what stage of the growing period did the first humans fall? They fell at the top of the growth stage. This can be demonstrated by examining the circumstances surrounding the fall of the first human ancestors and the history of the providence of restoration. These will be further clarified through a thorough study of this volume.
During the growing period, all beings in the creation grow by virtue of the autonomy and governance given by God's Principle. God, the Author of the Principle, has regard only for the fruits of their growth which are based on the Principle. In this way, He governs all things indirectly. We call this growing period the realm of God's indirect dominion or the realm of dominion based on accomplishments through the Principle.
All things reach perfection after passing through the growing period (the realm of indirect dominion) by virtue of the autonomy and governance given by God's Principle. Human beings, however, are created in such a way that their growth requires the fulfillment of their own portion of responsibility, in addition to the guidance provided by the Principle. They must exercise this responsibility in order to pass successfully through the growing period and reach perfection. We can deduce from God's commandment to Adam and Eve20(Gen. 2:17)CEV|KJ|NI that the first human ancestors were responsible to believe in the Word of God and not eat of the fruit. Whether or not they disobeyed God and fell depended not on God, but on themselves. Hence, whether or not human beings attain perfection does not depend only on God's power of creation; it also requires the fulfillment of human responsibility. In His capacity as the Creator, God created human beings in such a manner that they can pass through the growing period (the realm of indirect dominion) and attain perfection only when they have completed their own portion of responsibility. Because God Himself created human beings in this way, He does not interfere with human responsibility.
God endowed human beings with a portion of responsibility for the following reason. By fulfilling their given portion of responsibility, with which even God does not interfere, human beings are meant to inherit the creative nature of God and participate in God's great work of creation. God intends human beings to earn ownership and become worthy to rule over the creation as creators in their own right,21(Gen. 1:28)CEV|KJ|NI just as God governs over them as their Creator. This is the principal difference between human beings and the rest of creation.
Once we fulfill our responsibility, we inherit God's creatorship and attain dominion over all things, including the angels. God provides us with a course through the realm of indirect dominion that we may attain this perfection. We fallen people, who have not yet attained the qualification to rule, must fulfill our responsibility according to the Principle of Restoration. By so doing, we can progress through the realm of indirect dominion and thereby restore our right to rule over all things, including Satan. This is the only way we can accomplish the purpose of creation. God's providence of salvation has been prolonged for so long because the central figures in charge of the providence of restoration repeatedly made mistakes while attempting to fulfill their portions of responsibility, with which even God could not interfere.
No matter how great the saving grace of the cross of Christ, the salvation knocking at our door will be for naught unless we fortify our faith, which is our portion of responsibility. It was God's responsibility to grant the benefit of resurrection through the crucifixion of Jesus, but to believe or not to believe is strictly one's own portion of responsibility.22(John 3:16)CEV|KJ|NI; (Eph. 2:8)CEV|KJ|NI; (Rom. 5:1)CEV|KJ|NI
What is the realm of God's direct dominion and what is its purpose? Human beings abide in the realm of direct dominion when, as subject partner and object partner, they unite in the love of God to form a four position foundation and become one in heart with God. In this realm they freely and fully share love and beauty according to the will of the subject partner, thus realizing the purpose of goodness. The realm of direct dominion is the realm of perfection. It is essential for the fulfillment of the purpose of creation.
What is the meaning of God's direct dominion over human beings? Once Adam and Eve had perfected themselves as individuals centered on God, they were to live together as one, forming the four position foundation in their family. Living in oneness with God's Heart, they would have led a life of goodness, sharing the fullness of love and beauty with Adam as the head of the family. In the realm of God's direct dominion, people will intensely experience God's Heart within themselves. Hence, they will know His Will and carry it out in their actions. Just as every part of the body spontaneously moves in response to the subtle directions of the mind, people will spontaneously carry out the Will of God in accord with the deeply felt intentions of His Heart. In this state of perfect resonance, the purpose of creation is realized.
What will the world be like when the natural world abides under the direct dominion of human beings? When a fully mature person relates with the diverse things in nature as his object partners, they come together to form a four position foundation. People who are in total resonance with God's Heart will lead the natural world in the free-flowing sharing of love and beauty, and the entire universe will realize goodness. In such a manner, human beings will exercise direct dominion over all things.
The universe was created after the pattern of a human being, who is in the image of God's dual characteristics. Therefore, the structure of the universe and every entity in it resembles that of a human being, which consists most fundamentally of mind and body.23(cf. Creation 1.2) Corresponding to the human mind and body, the universe consists of the incorporeal world and the corporeal world, both of which are real and substantial. The incorporeal world is so called because we cannot perceive it through our five physical senses. Yet we can perceive it through our five spiritual senses. Those who have had spiritual experiences testify that the incorporeal world appears as real as the world in which we live. The incorporeal and corporeal worlds together form the cosmos.
The body cannot act apart from its relationship with the mind; a person cannot perform true actions apart from a relationship with God. Likewise, the corporeal world cannot manifest its true value apart from a relationship with the incorporeal world. Furthermore, just as we cannot discern a person's character without fathoming his mind, and we cannot understand the fundamental meaning of human life without understanding God, so we cannot completely understand the nature and structure of the corporeal world without understanding the nature and structure of the incorporeal world. The incorporeal world, or spirit world, is in the position of subject partner, and the corporeal world, or physical world, is in the position of object partner. The latter is like a shadow of the former.24(Heb. 8:5)CEV|KJ|NI When we shed our physical bodies after our life in the physical world, we enter the spirit world as spirits and live there for eternity.
The position of human beings in the cosmos has three aspects. First, God created human beings to be the rulers of the universe.25(Gen. 1:28)CEV|KJ|NI The universe does not of itself have internal sensibility toward God. Hence, God does not govern the universe directly. Rather, God endowed human beings with sensibilities to all things in the universe and gave them the mandate to rule over the universe directly. God created the human body with elements from the physical world - such as water, clay and air - to allow us to perceive and govern it. To make it possible for us to perceive and govern the spirit world, God created our spirits with the same spiritual elements that compose the spirit world. On the Mount of Transfiguration, Moses and Elijah, who had died hundreds of years earlier, appeared before Jesus and ministered to him.26(Matt. 17:3)CEV|KJ|NI These were actually the spirits of Moses and Elijah, yet Jesus was able to converse with them and was glorified before them. Human beings, composed of flesh which can dominate the physical world and spirit which can dominate the spiritual world, likewise have the potential to rule both worlds.
Second, God created human beings to be the mediator and the center of harmony of the cosmos. When a person's flesh and spirit unite through give and take action and become God's substantial object partner, the physical and spiritual worlds can also begin give and take action with that person as their center. They thus achieve harmonious integration to construct a cosmos that is responsive to God. Like the air that enables two tuning forks to resonate with each other, a true person acts as the mediator and center of harmony between the two worlds. The ability to communicate between the two worlds also may be likened to a radio or television which transforms invisible waves into perceptible images and sounds. Thus, a person can accurately convey the realities of the spirit world to the physical world.
Third, God created human beings to encapsulate in a substantial form the essences of everything in the cosmos. God created the universe by projecting and developing the pre-existent prototype of the human internal nature and external form into countless substantial forms. The human spirit encapsulates all of the elements found in the spirit world, since God created the spirit world as the unfolding of the spirit's internal nature and external form. The human body encapsulates all the elements of the physical world, since God created the material realm as the unfolding of the body's internal nature and external form. Accordingly, since human beings contain within themselves the essences of all things in the cosmos, each person is a microcosm.
However, due to the human Fall, the universe has lost its master. St. Paul wrote, "the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God"27(Rom. 8:19)CEV|KJ|NI - that is, people who have been restored to the original state. Tragically, with the Fall of human beings, who should have served as the center of universal harmony, the give and take between the physical and spiritual worlds was severed. The two worlds have been rendered utterly unable to achieve integration and harmony. Since they remain divided, Paul continued, "the whole creation has been groaning in travail."28(Rom. 8:22)CEV|KJ|NI
Jesus came as the new Adam, perfect in flesh and spirit. He was the microcosm of the cosmos. This is why it is written, "God has put all things in subjection under his feet."29(I Cor. 15:27)CEV|KJ|NIJesus is our Savior. He came into the world to open the way for fallen people to become perfect as he was perfect, by moving our hearts to believe in him and become one with him.
The physical self consists of the dual characteristics of the physical mind (subject partner) and the physical body (object partner). The physical mind directs the physical body to maintain the functions necessary for its survival, protection and reproduction. Instinct, for example, is an aspect of an animal's physical mind. For the physical self to grow in good health, it must have proper nourishment. It must absorb air and sunlight, which are intangible, yang types of nourishment, and must eat and drink food and water, which are tangible, yin types of nourishment. The body has give and take with this nourishment through its digestive and circulatory systems.
Good or evil in the conduct of the physical self is the main determinant of whether the spirit self becomes good or evil. This is because the physical self provides a certain element, which we call the vitality element, to the spirit self. In our everyday experience, our mind rejoices when our physical self performs good deeds but feels anxiety after evil conduct. This is because vitality elements, which can be good or evil according to the deeds of the physical self, are infused into our spirit self.
Our spirit self, or spirit, is a substantial yet incorporeal reality which can be apprehended only through the spiritual senses. It is the subject partner to our physical self. Our spirit can communicate directly with God and is meant to govern the incorporeal world, including the angels. In appearance our spirit self matches our physical self. After we shed the physical self, we enter the spirit world and live there for eternity. The reason we desire an eternal life is because our innermost self is the spirit self which has an eternal nature. Our spirit self consists of the dual characteristics of spirit mind (subject partner) and spirit body (object partner). The spirit mind is the center of the spirit self, and it is where God dwells.
The spirit grows through give and take action between two types of nourishment: life elements of a yang type that come from God, and vitality elements of a yin type that come from the physical self. The spirit self not only receives vitality elements from the physical self; it also returns an element to the physical self which we call the living spirit element. When people receive grace from a heavenly spirit, they undergo many positive changes in their physical self; they feel infinite joy and new strength welling up in them which can even drive away illness. Such phenomena occur because the physical self receives living spirit elements from the spirit self.
The spirit can grow only while it abides in the flesh. Thus, the relationship between the physical self and the spirit self is similar to that between a tree and its fruit. When the physical mind obeys the spirit mind and the physical self acts according to the good purpose of the spirit mind, the physical self receives living spirit elements from the spirit self and becomes wholesome. In return, the physical self provides good vitality elements to the spirit self, which enable the spirit self to grow properly in the direction of goodness.
Truth illuminates the innermost desires of the spirit mind. A person must first comprehend his spirit mind's deepest desire through the truth and then put this knowledge into action to fulfill his responsibility. Only then do the living spirit elements and vitality elements reciprocate within him, enabling him to progress toward goodness. The living spirit element and the vitality element have the relationship of internal nature and external form. Because all people have living spirit elements ever active within themselves, even an evil person's original mind inclines toward goodness. However, unless he actually leads a life of goodness, the living spirit elements cannot engage in proper give and take with the vitality elements, nor can they be infused into his physical self to make it wholesome.
It can be inferred from the above that the spirit self can attain perfection only during a person's earthly life. The spirit mind guides the spirit self as it grows in the soil of the physical self. The growth of the spirit self toward perfection progresses through the three orderly stages ordained by the Principle of Creation. A spirit in the formation stage of life is called a form spirit; in the growth stage, a life spirit; and in the completion stage, a divine spirit.
A spirit fully matures as a divine spirit when the person's spirit self and physical self unite through perfect give and take action centered on God and form the four position foundation. A divine spirit can accurately feel and perceive every reality in the spirit world. As these spiritual realities resonate through the body and manifest themselves as physiological phenomena, they can be recognized through the five physical senses. People of divine spirit, who thus resonate with the spirit world, build the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. When they shed their physical bodies, they will make a smooth transition into the Kingdom of Heaven in the spirit world. For this reason, the Kingdom of Heaven in heaven will be realized only after the Kingdom of Heaven on earth has been established.
All the sensibilities of a spirit are cultivated through the reciprocal relationship with the physical self during earthly life. Therefore, only when a person reaches perfection and is totally immersed in the love of God while on earth can he fully delight in the love of God as a spirit after his death. All the qualities of the spirit self are developed while it abides in the physical self: Sinful conduct during earthly life aggravates evil and ugliness in the spirit of a fallen person, while the redemption of sins granted during earthly life opens the way for his spirit to become good. This was the reason Jesus had to come to the earth in the flesh to save sinful humanity. We must lead a good life while we are on the earth. Jesus gave the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven to Peter, who remained on the earth,30(Matt. 16:19)CEV|KJ|NI and said, "whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven,"31(Matt. 18:18)CEV|KJ|NI because the primary objective of the providence of restoration must be carried out on the earth.
It is not God who decides whether a person's spirit enters heaven or hell upon his death; it is decided by the spirit himself. Humans are created so that once they reach perfection they will fully breathe the love of God. Those who committed sinful deeds while on earth become crippled spirits who are incapable of fully breathing in the love of God. They find it agonizing to stand before God, the center of true love. Of their own will, they choose to dwell in hell, far removed from the love of God.
Since the human spirit can grow only in the soil of the physical self, the multiplication of human spirits takes place at the same time that the multiplication of physical selves occurs: during earthly life.
The human mind consists of the spirit mind and physical mind. The relationship between these two minds is like that between internal nature and external form. When they become one through give and take action with God as their center, they form a united functioning entity which guides the spirit self and physical self to become harmonious and progress toward the purpose of creation. This united entity is the mind of a human being.
The conscience is that faculty of the human mind which, by virtue of its inborn nature, always directs us toward what we think is good. However, due to the Fall, human beings have become ignorant of God and thus ignorant of the absolute standard of goodness. For this reason, we are unable to set the proper standard of judgment for our conscience. As the standard of goodness varies, the standard of our conscience also fluctuates; this causes frequent contention even among those who advocate a conscientious life.
The original mind is that faculty of the human mind which pursues absolute goodness. It relates to the conscience as internal nature to external form. A person's conscience directs him to pursue goodness according to the standard which he has set up in ignorance, even though it may differ from the original standard. However, the original mind, being sensitive to the proper direction, repels this faulty standard and works to correct the conscience.
As long as our spirit mind and physical mind are under the bondage of Satan, the functioning entity they form through their give and take action is called the evil mind. The evil mind continually drives people to do evil. Our original mind and conscience direct us to repel the evil mind. They guide us in desperate efforts to reject evil desires and cling to goodness by breaking our ties with Satan and turning to face God.
7. This is a paraphrase of the opening lines of An Explanation of the Diagram of the Great Ultimate (Tai-chi-t'u shuo) by Chon Tun-i.
8. Book of Changes, Appended Remarks 4.