These are some parts of a conversation I engaged in on the first Unification internet discussion group – OWC - in the mid ...
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
Cain and Abel in Unification culture
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Cain and Abel in Unification culture

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Cain and Abel in Unification culture

  1. 1. These are some parts of a conversation I engaged in on the first Unification internet discussion group – OWC - in the mid 90s. The conversations ranged over many questions and topics and were refreshingly open. I was living in Russia at the time.<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Date: Mon, 4 Sep 95 22:57 +0400<br />Subject: Re: Cain & Abel<br />A few general thoughts about the whole Cain & Abel business that has made a big impact on the lives of most of us. <br />I remember when I first heard the Principle (1975) the part that I enjoyed hearing the most and found the most interesting were the lectures on Cain & Abel. I enjoyed them because I felt that they were dealing with real problems and human relationships. They helped me to understand myself and others and to see what was going on. Since I wanted to become perfect (in 6 months I remember thinking at the time) I felt that they dealt with the nitty gritty of spiritual life (prayer, spiritual world etc. have never interested me very much). <br />After a short time I realized that this love for Cain and Abel was not shared by others. In fact they were the words (apart from indemnity) most dreaded by ordinary members. Either the leaders talked about C&A and the importance of unity, or the members who talked about it did so in a rather sycophantic way.<br />I personally have never had any dramatic C&A problems with people. Let me rephrase that. I have never felt badly treated and personally abused although I saw it happening to others. I think I was usually a good Cain and got on well with everyone I was working with. So I didn't get dramatically Cained out. On the other hand I have experienced people getting dramatically Cained out with me. So I suppose I was good at raising Cain (in the traditional sense of the phrase).<br />Some years later (after I went to university and studied Marxism and other things) I began to realise how Cain and Abel functions in the UC as a doctrine and why it was that people dread it. <br />I realized that it functions as an ideology of the ruling class (forgive my Marxism) to get people to do what leaders want them to do. That is not to say this is the way it should be. Just the way it seems to be (or at least has been) much of the time. When one no longer is able to inspire one's members through love, or with a vision or by one's example, it is so tempting to revert to the I'm Abel, you're Cain mode of operating. The theory (dys)functions in this way particularly well on a team although can be dragged out in most other situations to prop up one's authority and position.<br />So instead of being a theology of salvation showing people how to be liberated from the fallen nature, it functions as a way to maintain the status quo, keep people down, and very effectively control people, creating a sort of serfdom. As a by product it also seems to have a tendency to reinforce and strengthen rather than reduce people's fallen nature. <br />So I think the problem is that the theology of Cain and Abel became institutionalized. I think one needs to distinguish quite clearly between the theory of Cain and Abel (which I think is quite profound) and the way it as actually functions in the UC. From my own personal experience I find that the theory works everywhere I have tried it except in the UC. In non UM situations I find that through practising it I am quite successful in my relationships with others and can advance quite quickly in terms of promotion etc. However, I personally don't think the UC is based on the Principle. In fact it is one of the most unprincipled bodies I have ever been associated with which I think explains its lack of success and the fact that it is well known that all the most capable people become disillusioned and leave. One measurement of the health of a business or other organisation is its staff turnover. <br />Cain and Abel has in practice become identified with the hierarchical structure. One's leader is referred to as one's Abel. I think it would not be kosher to say that one's Abel was someone other than one's leader and rather heretical to say that actually it is someone outside the UC altogether.<br />I think it is wrong to identify one's leader as one's Abel, ex officio as it were. As a Christian I always try to find God in every person. One thing Father said about C&A that has always stuck in my mind was that the KofH comes when you can call millions of people your Abel. That is to say you can see God in everyone and learn from everyone. This is the sort of thing one hears about great scholars for example. They listen to and are genuinely interested in everyones' opinion since they believe that they can learn from everyone. Every person encountered is significant.<br />If Abel is the one who is relatively close to God compared to Cain (however one is supposed to measure such a thing is beyond me), how can one institutionalize God and expect him to fit in to a Church's hierarchy. I know, Father set up the system. But I have never come across a clear exposition of Cain and Abel in Father's speeches that would support the Church practice. I have heard Father saying on several occasions that the Church has got its understanding and practice of Cain and Abel all wrong though. For example:<br />'I do not know where this kind of strange thought that Abel is the central figure and in the position to command came from. I don't know how it crept into our movement here in America. Many young members have left the church because of their leaders.' (TW, Dec. 83)<br />From my own personal experience as a leader I know that much of the time my members were Abel to me. They often had better ideas, better prayer life and certainly worked harder than I did. At the same time I know that I often have better ideas than my leaders (but rarely worked as hard and don't have as good a prayer life). <br />So as far as I can see who is Cain and who is Abel is a flexible thing. God moves where He will. The point is to listen and be sensitive to God spirit wherever and through whoever He happens to be working. Sometimes it is the leader, sometimes not. Sometimes it is through a tramp one meets on the street. <br />So identifying one's leader with one's Abel is a bad and dangerous bit of theology. It implies that going against one's leader means going against God. The old Divine Right of Kings nonsense that I seem to recall the DP regarded as a Cain type political theory. This is not a very nice thing to burden oneself, or others with. It gives the leader a lot of power over a person's life in more ways than one. It gives him the authority to probe into and mess up a person's internal spiritual life. Also since most UC members want to go to the Blessing but they know that if they don't unite with their Abel they obviously haven't made the foundation of substance and so are not ready to receive the Messiah & get Blessed. <br />This makes the problem of immature leaders worse. The old excuse was that Father had to rely on unqualified people. The real problem was not the immature leadership but the authority and power that was invested in them by the Cain and Abel theology. An immature leader is easy to live and work with. When one believes or is supposed to believe that he is Abel and standing in God's position, seeing things from God's point of view etc. this is a whole different ball game. It is this that causes the problems.<br />So I think that of course one has to work together with one's leader, boss, manager or whatever to get a particular job done (without sacrificing one's integrity) but I think it is wrong to invest this person with some sort of divine authority and pretend that he is one's Abel. (He may be but isn't necessarily so) <br />Unfortunately it still seems to be common enough to call leaders Abel figures. Let's do this centring on Rev. So and so. This is a bad bit of theology too. God is supposed to be in the centre, not a human being. Having a person there limits everything to that person. Creativity, responsibility etc. are all stifled. The whole thing becomes paralyzed after a while. The terminology we use distorts relationships incredibly.<br />As to a better world, (I don't believe in an ideal world) I always thought that the Judeo-Christian view was light years ahead of the Orient. God being invisible means that anyone can have a relationship with God or Jesus. This leads to a very decentralized and creative, dynamic society in which people have the freedom to be responsible and follow their original mind which is where they commune with God. <br />The trouble with the Oriental view is that God seems to be embodied in a particular living person, the Emperor or TP. This of course limits things considerable since if God is a being in time and space only a certain elite can have a personal relationship with Him. It also means that there is a large bureaucracy necessary to transmit God's blessing, direction etc. to everyone. It reminds me of the command economy of Communism which has condemned itself to the dustbin of history. Such an approach is inherently stagnant leading to rapid ossification.<br />Its getting late. I am sorry for rambling on like this and cluttering up your mail box with these thoughts but I suppose it helped me to achieve a bit more clarity about what I think.<br />William<br />------------------------------<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Date: Mon, 4 Sep 95 23:46 +0400<br />Subject: Justice and forgivensss<br />Re: On forgiveness and Justice<br />I thought that the quest for justice was a good quality to have. Especially if one wasn't personally involved in which case it could be tinged by a desire for revenge and feelings of resentment. Wasn't Moses motivated rather powerfully by a sense of outrage at injustice? How about the prophets who didn't like the injustice and corruption among the rulers? They all wanted to be ruled by God's law which is impartial, applying in the same way to the highest and lowest in the land. <br />The Abel-type democracies following this stream only came about because people decided that they wanted justice and the rule of law instead of arbitrary government. They wanted the power of the king to be limited by laws. The king should not be allowed to kill, steal etc. with impunity. These ideas were enshrined in the Magna Carta in England in 1215. What about the Glorious Revolution of 1688? The American Revolution of 1766? Was no taxation without representation a Cain type view? Should the colonists have meekly allowed the British governments abuses of power to go unchecked and unchallenged? What about the many hundreds of people who lost their lives in the fight for justice? Were they all Cained out? <br />In DP the people who opposed this were I think on the Cain side: the Egyptian Pharaoh's and absolute power; the Divine Right of Kings idea; Fascism; Communism; and other tin pot dictatorships and oligarchies. In none of these is criticism tolerated much less welcomed. Dissidents were hauled off to serve in the mines. Not a very healthy approach. If they had listened to those people they might have avoided a few cul de sacs. No discussion. No conversations (unless they are censored) No criticism. No change. No progress. Stagnation. No creativity. Death. Isn't G&T (no I don't mean the alcoholic type) the source of the energy for existence, action and multiplication? <br />A free and healthy society welcomes criticism because it loves truth. If someone can show me where I am wrong and a better way of doing things this is to be welcomed not feared. Such people are my friends not my enemies. In Britain there is in parliament what is called the Loyal Opposition. Their job is to criticise the government's policy. If they can find holes in it then the policy can be changed. No one questions their loyalty. No one accuses them of being traitors. To do so is regarded by everyone as below the belt. Mrs. Thatcher when she was in power lamented the lack of a decent opposition. They were unable to produce constructive criticism and fresh ideas which was their job.<br />So this let's not criticise and expose corruption or whatever attitude doesn't strike me as terribly progressive. A bit like the kind of people I meet in Russian bureaucracies. A sort of hang over from the old days. There again, false witness shouldn't be allowed either (on either side). <br />I think a genuine free press in the UC would be quite an advance. You know. Straight news reporting about the really interesting things that happen. Not the providential stuff but the sort of things a journalist would write about.<br />William<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Date: Tue, 5 Sep 95 00:20 +0400<br />Subject: Re: Cain & Abel Pt 2<br />I thought it was clear that I am not particularly enthralled about the way that C&A is understood and practiced in the UC. I was just trying to untangle the obvious discrepancy between theory and practice and suggest that the problem lay in the identification of the organisational struture with a theology of salvation. The result is that it functions as a way to justify and maintain the status quo. I get the impression you would agree with me on that.<br />However I was also trying to avoid chucking the baby out with the bath water although Eric seemed to think I did. I don't think the problem is that leaders didn't/don't behave as true Abels for whatever reason. I think the problem was the identification of Abel and Cain with leader and members as shown in expressions such as my Abel or my central figure. The two are seen to coincide. Imbuing what should be a working relationship with sacramental and salvational meaning is a mistake. Just because I think the person I am working with is a jerk shouldn't jepardise my relationship with God. <br />I remember people who had a change of Abel figure finding that the new Abel gave different directions and guidance would ask me in a seriously puzzled way why God had changed his mind. They thought that their Abel figure was the mouth piece of God and naturally enough were rather disconcerted to find God wasn't unchanging, unique and absolute, to use a well known expression. <br />I think people could have worked more easily with some of the worst leaders if they didn't think the guy was Abel and determined their connection with TP & God. But because they saw and analysed leader-member relationships in these terms they were naturally being set up for an unpleasant experience.<br />So are there C&A problems in the UC? Yes, I think so. Cain often kills Abel. The leaders often kill the members. Cain I seem to remember was the older brother. So all those people who left etc. I think they would have been better served if they had not been taught that there leader was their Abel figure through whom they would establish a FofF etc. <br />If I have a lousy leader I prefer to think of him as being uncle Laban. It makes the whole thing more bearable. When I was CARP leader in Britain (no big deal. There are more former leaders of British CARP than there are CARP members) I found that every time I went to see my leader (he really wasn't my leader but we seem to have such a crass terminology in the UC) I would get tricked in one way or another into doing something or sacrificing someone. So I just saw the whole thing in terms of Jacob and Laban and the whole thing became more bearable. <br />That's enough for now<br />William<br />------------------------------<br />From: Date: Sun, 3 Sep 1995 15:10:51 +0900<br />Subject: Cain/Abel<br />One of the things I have noticed here in Korea is that a number of things that I had thought were integral parts of Unification Church life appear actually to have originated not in Korea but in Japan.<br />The institutionalization of Cain and Abel that William talks about is probably the most prominent example of this. The practice of refering to one's leader as " Abel" is quite foreign to the Unification Church experience in Korea. Korean members I have spoken to tell me that even in the early years this practice did not exist. <br />It is, however, a common practice in the Japanese church. (The Japanese church also has a practice of refering to brothers as " Adamu-san" and sisters as " Eba-san." ) My theory is that the institutionalization of Cain/Abel exists in the United States and other countries today as a result of influence from Japanese members. As such, I don't think it should be considered orthodox Unification Church practice.<br />When *** and I were first matched I asked to see her " central figure." She said: " You want to see my WHAT?" The term " central figure" is another DP term that is used commonly among Western members, but is not part of the daily vocabulary of Korean members.<br />When Korean leaders first started going overseas in large numbers, I remember thinking to myself: " Oh, good. Maybe now the non-orthodox institutional practices that the Japanese exported to the West will be corrected, and the Western churches will be brought in line with how things are done in Korea." <br />From what I've seen on owc, that seems not to have happened.<br />Tim<br /> (Seoul, Korea)<br />Japanese leaders--aren't you teaching a principle that I do not teach, when you say, " I am Abel because I am a church leader. Youare Cain. Cain obeys Abel. This is the principle. So obey. " There is no such principle. <br />God's Will and the World (p465)<br />Any two of you are in a relationship of Cain and Abel. Who loves the other more will be in Abel's position. The Brothers & I 4-8-73<br />If you have the wrong idea of the relationship between Cain and Abel, it is apt to lead you nowhere, or to the place opposite where you should be. <br />Can you safely say, " I'm in the position of Abel because I'm old enough in the movement?" (No!) You are apt to fall into the position of Cain, and the danger comes more to the early-comers into the movement, not to the new ones.<br />Those who are born first are in the position of Cain, the younger one is in the position of Abel. If you are so arrogant as to call yourself Abel because you are old enough in the movement, you are apt to fall into the position of Cain, and even into the position of Satan.<br />If you are in the position of Cain, but cooperate with God and work in the place of God, then you remain in the closer position, like successful Cain.<br />When you are always ready to receive something from others you are placing yourself in the position of Cain.<br />Cain is the first born, he's in the position of your elder brother or sister. The younger one must emit such a light of love and warmth that those who are in the position of Cain would be more than willing to give him anything. <br />Cain and Abel Relationships 3-15-75<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Date: Fri, 8 Sep 95 06:30 +0400<br />Subject: re: Cain and Abel<br />Gary said<br />>I have seen Father try to end 'heretical' practices without much success. <br />>The most frequent was Father trying to stop people from praying to him. >Another 'heresy' was the idea that you had to live in a Church centre to be <br />>a faithful member. But even he couldn't change some of us.<br />I have noticed that people often wonder why Father doesn't change the Church or do something about the abuses. Well, for one thing I don't think he can. I don't think he controls what goes on and I don't think he could change things even if he tried to. For example, remember all those Japanese sisters that Father personally educated recently? Well I asked Mr Furuta The J-CARP leader when he was in Moscow about how this had changed the J UC. He said that the effect of being with Father generally wore off quite quickly and that basically it was business as usual (to paraphrase).<br />Secondly I don't think he really wants to. I think he would prefer us to clean the place up. When he did that little reshuffle at UTS recently I heard that he said that the UTS community should have done it themselves. Well we all know how an individual who goes out on a limb is treated. Anyone at UTS (or anywhere else for that matter) who questioned the status quo gets it in the neck. One is accused of questioning the system that Father established and the people he appointed. The only way is to indulge in some long term consciousness raising (sorry, more Marxism). When everyone recognises that " the emperor has no clothes" and the whole thing is a farce then perhaps there will come about some change. Until then there are too many people who still believe in the leader=Abel etc. Theology/ideology. (False consciousness?) (I am actually a rabid anti-Communist so don't get any funny ideas. It just that when I was at University studying Marxism I did the usual VOC critique on it. But I realised I couldn't understand it. So I developed a Marxist critique of the UC just for fun so I could see how Marxism worked. I realised that it is not a stupid theory at all but a brilliant critique of fallen nature and a rationalisation of sin. From my own experience as a leader I realised that Cain is an expert on Abel's fallen nature; the old problem members are sent to help you become perfect line.)<br />Thirdly, I really don't want Father to change anything. I think we created the mess (either by supporting it or acquiescing) and we should clean it up. It is MY Church (bearing in mind that I am not a member of it). I was quite disappointed when I heard that one of Father's sons was cleaning up the businesses. This kind of change initiated or imposed from the top will never change anything in the long run. It is the old revolution from above much beloved of Peter the Great, Uncle Joe, the New Deal, welfare state etc. It just creates and reinforces people's expectations that authority resides with the leader/state and encourages and perpetuates the state of dependency.<br />While I was at UTS I initiated a few changes. The trouble is, like socialism it takes up too many evenings. Also most people really don't want change. There is apathy and too much deference to authority. And I really didn't have the spiritual energy to inspire a student movement to have sit ins and generally demonstrate against the outrageous things which occurred there.<br />Here in Russia the old Cain/Abel tradition is being established as far as one can tell. It seems particularly well suited to the local culture. There is no way people with the character of the former dissidents would join or be welcome. Like other places I presume one is expected to sacrifice personal integrity on the altar of I am not quite sure what. So the outlook is rather bleak. I find the members of the UC in general really very conservative and lacking in imagination of how things both in the UC and the world could be different.<br />William<br />------------------------------<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Date: Sun, 10 Sep 95 08:02 +0400<br />Subject: re: Cain and Abel<br />Paul::How do you define Abel?<br />In the context of this particular sentence, Abel is the one who represents God's position and is the mediator between a person and God. The point is that people seem to still think and believe a leader is Abel even when he isn't.<br />Paul:<br />>But then, what business do they have being leaders in the Unification >Church?<br />It is a problem. But as I said before the positions of Cain and Abel change. At a speech in Camburg Germany in 1981 Father asked everyone who is Abel & who is Cain. Everyone said Father was Abel. Then Father drank a glass of water and repeated the question. The answer was the same. No he said. Because I just drank a glass of water while you are all sitting here listening to me I became Cain and you became Abel. But if I now speak and give of myself, I will become Abel once more. (Or words to that effect). So I don't think it is a problem if my leader is not Abel all the time. The problem only arises when either one expects him to be Abel or actually thinks he is when he is behaving rather oddly. I think a person can be quite a good leader without at the same time being Abel and all the theological and salvific baggage that goes along with the title. One just has to take people as they are and work with them. One comes across some pretty good leaders in different spheres of life who are well liked and respected.<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Date: Sun, 10 Sep 95 10:19 +0400<br />Subject: re: Cain and Abel<br />William comments on Eric's interjection:<br />>The fact that they were appointed by TF. As is pointed out by the outline<br />>from Jim Baughman, and as I have made the point many times before (but<br />>which nearly no one has responded to the point), Abel is an earned<br />>position. Just who is it that has earned the right to be Abel? No one<br />>(except TF) in 1954 or 1960 or 1970 and damn few in 1980 or 1995, that is<br />>for sure.<br />Not all leaders are appointed by TF but only the ones at the top.<br />Who has the right to be Abel? Well, Father once said that Cain decides who is Abel. Since C&A are relative terms in any relationship someone is Cain and someone is Abel (though which is which is not fixed). So to say only TF has earned the right to be Abel is neither helpful nor correct. Its just that one is relatively closer to God than the other. Did the historical Abel have the right to be Abel or should he have called himself Fred instead? (I know, a silly comment)<br />Father doesn't appoint Abel. He only appoints leaders. Father said that it is Cain who decides who is Abel, and that the one who calls himself Abel is usually Cain. (I can't remember where he said it. It just stuck in my mind). The mistake is thinking that they are therefore Abel. Of course they should try to be, but so too should everyone else especially his members. So of course the position of Abel has to be earned, but earned is such an awful term to describe what happens. I suppose no one responded because by this stage of the game everyone would agree. Its not a particularly contraversial point.<br />>Who in the West can TF trust for that? <br />Doesn't Father have anyone in the West he can trust? I would hope that he doesn't see us in that way. I thought that he trusts and has faith in people even though prehaps they don't deserve it.<br />Martin and Tim as Abel? In many ways they are Abel to me. I have learnt a great deal from both of them, as I have from you. I don't know Tim but I like what he writes and am quite impressed by his testimony. Obviously there are quite a lot of people that he mixes with that respect him and in that sense may regard him as their Abel, if they thought in those terms. Martin? Well, I have known Martin since he was a little boy (spiritually). I must say that when he came back from the US some years ago he certainly had a greater love for TP than I did. True Abel? I don't think this is a helpful term since C&A are just relative positions.<br />I don't think that the statement that only TF is a True Abel & no one else is either helpful or correct. If only TF is a True Abel then the terms become irrelevant and inapplicable to everyday life since they cannot explain anything. C&A are only relative terms applicable between any two people. As soon as we talk about a True Abel we end up expecting the impossible from people. <br />>Why do we expect people, just because they claim to understand the Principle, <br />>to suddenly root out all their FN and suddenly become perfect?<br />I don't. The worst thing though is when someone expects me to be perfect. (Suddenly? Well, when I first heard DP I thought I would be perfect in 6 months without too much trouble. Now I'm embarassed to tell people now how long ago it was that I met TP). <br />William<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Date: Thu, 21 Dec 95 01:58 +0300<br />Subject: Re: Artificial Cains<br />Hello everyone. I came back from England yesterday. I haven't had time to catch up with much OWC but Eric's response to Gus's nice little bit of creative theology about artificial Cains and Abels came to my attention. <br />Eric wrote:<br />>I have written here more than a few times, that all Abel-figures in the <br />>church (except True Father and True Mother) have been artificial, because <br />>none of them have earned it (a procedure which was outlined further on in >your post). <br />>They have all been appointed (except a few which inherited the position). >Having been appointed (or inherited) they did not and many do not still >understand that the reason that they got the position is not because they >deserved it, but because that was basically all True Father had to work with. <br />Yes I have noticed you say this a number of times Eric and each time felt like taking you up on it but never got around to it. But after my little trip to England I discovered to my surprise that all my contemporaries are now kowtowing to someone who belongs to my generation, namely the new national leader. They seemed to be under the rather amusing, if it wasn't so tragic, misconception that due to his elevation his utterances are to be taken as if they were made ex cathedra. I felt rather sorry for the chap as no one was giving him the kind of critical feedback he needed with the result that he was landed with approving every silly decision that needed to be taken and doing the kind of work which someone else should be doing. But to be fair I think he also set himself up for this by not delegating real authority. <br />As someone who tries to write, I know that there is no one to be valued more than a person who can give an informed critical review of one's work. It is so hard to find such people. But back to the main point:<br />I don't think Father appoints Abel-figures. He just appoints leaders for particular projects and other positions that need to be filled. Sometimes they are Abel-like and sometimes Cain-like, or Uncle Laban-like. As I mentioned before these roles are flexible and move around depending on the relative closeness to God, heart or whatever of the leader and the people he is working with. Whether they are Abel, Cain or Seth a person is still the leader and as such has a role to play and responsibilities to fulfill. One may not like him, but just as in the army or in business sometimes one gets a boss who is a pratt, that is no excuse for not being professional and getting on with the job at hand (assuming it is ethical and not against one's conscience).<br />Who decides who is Abel? Father said Cain decides who is Abel. If Abel is in some sense closer to God than me, that is something I have to recognize and accept myself. It behooves each of us to develop such a sensitivity to God's heart and spirit (Level 4 says sensitivity to God's heart is the most important quality of a mature person.) <br />If Abel is in some sense an important figure in my own path of restoration and salvation, it is me that has to decide who that person is to be or at least of my own volition recognize and accept the person that God [NOT necessarily the church leader] has brought me to.<br />So prayerfully I decide myself who is my Abel and who will be my spiritual guide and counsellor. Ideally this should be one's spiritual parent. It is a serious mistake that in practice the church structure regards the relationship with one's leader as being more important than that with one's spiritual parent.<br />So as I said before, I think it is bad theology and a misunderstanding of the Principle to automatically equate being a leader and being an Abel-figure. This little misunderstanding has caused many people to stumble and fall away. <br />It is also unfair to a leader as it places on him many expectations which he may be unable to fulfill. What a burden to have to think that one always has to be Abel or at least pretend to be Abel even if one doesn't feel like it. I prefer someone who is just being himself not putting on airs and graces.<br />Date: 11 November 1995<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org(William Haines)<br />Subject: East and West<br />I think it was Peter who said:<br />>On the other hand it would be interesting to pull apart the strengths and <br />>weakness of Eastern vs. Western culture to restore some balance in the minds <br />>of Church members, at all levels.<br />It’s funny that you should bring this up as I have been thinking about this recently after a recent leader's meeting I attended. One thing that was mentioned was disunity between the East and West. <br />Anyway, during the meeting the local bigwig reiterated his vision for the future and how the CIS was going to send 500,000 people to the next Blessing. He explained that the purpose of all our little projects such as WFWP, FFWP, IOWC etc. etc. etc. is for PR and to bring people to the Blessing. The purpose of inter-faith work is to bring people to the Blessing as opposed to being genuinely concerned about religious peace for its own sake.<br />One of the main tools in this little dispensation is the project that I am working on namely a high school curriculum. He expects that through this many teachers and students will attend the Blessing. At other times he says its main purpose is to resurrect the name of True Parents. <br />Now this is very different to my motivation for doing it. As I explain to people at every meeting, a bit like a broken record I would imagine, I am NOT working on the curriculum project for God, True Parents or the Unification Church. The purpose of the curriculum is to help the spiritual and moral education of students. Its purpose is not to promote the Unification Church. I really don't give a fig if anyone joins the UC through it or not. In fact the reason why it is popular is its non-confessional nature. The sole reason for the opposition to it is that Dr. S insists that Father's name be included and the credit for the project given to him. As a result an excellent program for spiritual and moral education is in the process of being banned in several cities. <br />At this same leader's meeting I attended there were several Russian members who gave 2 testimonies each. The first was about how inspired they were to meet TP or at least go to Kiev. The second testimony which they gave about an hour or so later after the meeting had opened up was how each felt like leaving the UC for various reasons. These are some of the best members. (In Poland last week I discovered the same disturbing phenomenon). Both experiences reminded me of the transition time of the Unified Family (before Mr. and Mrs. came and a long time before every Tom, Dick and Harry with a complex started calling themselves Rev.) into an organisation called the Unification Church.<br />It made me think about what had changed and a lot had to do with this East West thing. I realised that when I hear an Oriental leader expounding his vision of the future of the world or the movement I become profoundly depressed. I never really thought about why it was until recently. Then I realised that East and West operate on very different ethical systems. What follows is a rather disjointed attempt to work out in my own mind what is going on.<br />Oriental leaders always seem to be interested in the cash value of every campaign and activity in terms of how well it reflects on TP. The glorification of TP seems to be very high on their agenda. The internal purpose of everything is described in terms of the providence. This is why so many worthwhile projects are dropped when they no longer have any providential significance. When Father left Danbury I got the impression that the UC was no longer very interested in religious liberty. <br />This I imagine flows out of the filial piety ethic that one hears so much about. A good son obeys his father and lives his life so that his father's name may be respected. He also spends his life trying to fulfill his father's projects and visions. Thus in the UC something is judged to be good or bad depending on whether it advances the providence which is to have TP accepted throughout the world. This is where the means justifies the ends comes in which has caused us so many problems. <br />((A little illustration:I remember, and maybe Graham does too, a MFT workshop held in Britain in the summer of 1979. A newly arrived Japanese top FR was invited to give a testimony of how he made so much money. He explained that in Japan many houses don't have number plates which makes it difficult to identify them. So he dressed up as a government official and went door to door telling people that a new law had been passed. Every house had to display a number. He was able to recommend a company that would supply these numbers. Hey presto! Every house bought a number from him to put on the wall and he became the top FR. He was basically a con man. As you might imagine the British MFT was deeply depressed by this testimony. My only regret is that I was a lemming and didn't stand up and expose such practices as being fraudulent. I was still trying to come to terms with the recently introduced heresy that Japanese tradition was heavenly tradition.))<br />Now the problem is that in the Judeo-Christian West, at least as I understand it, doing things for this reason is called having an impure or ulterior motivation to put it politely. <br />A person who shows off their good deeds is like the Pharisee who lets all and sundry know when he is fasting. The proper way to do these things is to not let your right hand know what your left hand is doing. It is a higher charity to give to a person without him knowing who the donor is than letting him know. When one helps a person one does it not for PR or one's own image but for the sake of the person himself. Goodness is its own reward. Do good for its own sake. Purity of heart is to love one thing. A person who does good so as to create a certain image or impression is a hypocrite.<br />It may be the case that a person who does good ends up with a good reputation, but this is merely incidental. It should not be his motivation. It is a by product. This is all standard stuff in Christian ethics. So from a Christian point of view many of the projects of the UC are insincere and done with an impure motivation. This becomes a problem of conscience for a western person. For a person from the orient it does not appear to give them a bad conscience since they have a different ethical stance. So what might motivate an oriental member might leave a western member completely depressed and hurt (and vice versa I would imagine).<br />This is the problem we have in the UC. So many people think that there is an ulterior motive behind what is done. And they are right. Are we really interested in inter-faith dialogue or is it just a witnessing vehicle. People are spiritual beings and are not fooled so easily. They can tell if we love them because we genuinely care about them or if we love them because we want them to join and if they don't we turn our love to more prepared people. Are we really interested in a person's spiritual life and well being or do we just want to make the goal for the Blessing. I am thinking here of a number of people in Russia (and elsewhere I think) who were matched recently after being members for just a couple of months and have broken the Blessing and become negative feeling that they have been used and manipulated. <br />That is why many people don't want to be to closely involved or when they are they get burnt. This also happens with members. They sense the insincerity and become disillusioned. As one person said here in a sermon recently, It looks as if we witness to people so that they can go FR to support witnessing centres to witness to more people to go FR.<br />So here we have a problem. We proclaim universal absolute values but within the movement there are two irreconcilable value systems operating. In Christianity the invisible conscience (which relates to the transcendental) is the highest authority and it is formed by the teachings of the OT, NT and Greek philosophers which tend to be principle based such as keeping the law and having a pure motivation. In the Orient loyalty to one's earthly father or king seems to be the highest moral principle. The worst thing is to loose face. (What is shameful is getting found out, not doing the wrong itself).<br />This all became clearer to me when I discussed the leaders meeting with a Japanese sister. We were talking about an incident during which some dirty laundry was aired, some of it quite emotionally. I thought it was a good thing that these problems should be brought out and that there needed to be change. She reiterated the usual line that one should focus one oneself, changing oneself etc. etc. etc. One shouldn't criticise or try to change the system. I am sure you are all familiar with these lines. I asked her what Father's approach to problems was. When he saw a social problem did he just think about changing himself? No, she said, that is why he started groups like WFWP etc. And what I asked, is the group that needs to be started to solve the problems in the UC? Puzzled expression. I then asked her what she thought of Martin Luther and what she would have said to him if she was his IW. Again I was greeted by a look of incomprehension. <br />I then realised that this is very different to the Judeo-Christian approach. This focusing on changing oneself etc. is rather Buddhist or Taoist. Detaching oneself from the world etc. That is probably why the Orient has been so stagnant and ossified for aeons. The Judeo-Christian approach is to get involved in problems, injustices etc. and try to improve things (along with improving oneself). This is why in the West there has been continuous turmoil and disturbances for thousands of years through the OT prophets, the Greek philosophers, the countless movements to reform the Christian Church and society. <br />So I remembered that the DP is supposed to be the CT truth. It assumes that a person has already deeply studied and embodied the OT and NT truth and spirituality. Its roots are supposed to be Judeo-Christian. However for one reason or another it has been hijacked by people from the East who have no Judeo-Christian foundation and so understand it all in terms of their own culture. This is natural enough but it becomes a problem when this is then proclaimed as the right way to understand the Principle. It is no coincidence that in every country I have worked the educational department has been in the hands of Japanese people. Thus the way the Principle is taught and practiced has been severely distorted. (Such as the Cain and Abel thing discussed earlier). This is one reason why people from the West become so disillusioned with the UC and leave. They feel that it violates the deepest values and virtues that Western civilisation is based on. <br />William<br />Date: Wed, 13 Dec 95 19:24 +0300<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Re: East and West<br />Franco in response to my ramblings said:<br />>As far as the projects all having the purpose of bringing people<br />>to the Blessing. That we really are not into ecumenism, service<br />>projects, moral education out of concern for moral improvement <br />>etc..., I think it is all a matter of definition. If you believe that <br />>through the blessing the ultimate goal of moral education, <br />>ecumenism etc... if fulfilled, then it<br />>would make sense that the real purpose of any of the projects Father<br />>initiates is to bring people to the Blessing.<br />I tend to disagree with you here Franco old chap. I used to think this way. But I always felt there was something insincere about it. It required too much mental reservation, ad hoc rationalizing etc. If you really believe it that's fine. I just don't anymore. Like when Dr. S explains his motivation for doing things I think he is quite sincere about it. He really believes it. But I can't and I don't. I have a different background and different values. But we have a very good working relationship. After he gives his speeches I give mine (or vice versa) and we contradict each other but we still get along fine. I can't think the way he does and I doubt if he can think the way I do. Most of the other leaders are finally coming to terms with the fact that I am rather an odd case and that there is more to unity than agreeing with each other.<br />I have no problem with inviting people to the Blessing but I thinkit is overly simplistic to think that it does or will fulfill the aspirations for moral education or ecumenism of more than a microscopic proportion of the world's population namely the .0001%that are at the top of the growth stage and a few others that aren't but get swept along anyway. The majority of people that goto the Blessing I would put in the second category. There was a group of members of the Roerich Society (a well established and respected new age group) that attended the blessing in Kiev. The leader, and maybe others, had a genuine rebirth experience during the holy wine ceremony and substantially felt his lineage change. He has been testifying to the Russian members who on the whole felt nothing at all, at least compared to him.<br />I think ICUS, PWPA, IRFF, IRF, even IEF, etc. all exist for purpose that are worthy in themselves namely to encourage ethical reflection and cooperation amongst scientists, provide a forum for academics of differing views to dialogue and apply their minds to important problems, to do relief work, to promote inter-religious dialogue and cooperation, and to develop spiritual and moral education. This should be their only purpose. It may well be that some of the participants are so impressed that they enquire about Father's teaching and decide to go to the bIessing but this cannot be the purpose of the project. It is only an incidental byproduct. To have as a hidden ulterior motive the goal of getting people to the Blessing makes the whole thing a sham. That is why they are all regarded as fronts by our critics because that is often all they are. The WFWP for example in Britain and Russia are really quite irrelevant organisations. They may be a useful platform to sponsors Mother's public speeches but that is basically all that they are. To the best of my knowledge the people in charge don't interact and mix with other women's groups, have little idea of the current debates taking place in the women's movement and certainly don't participate in it and contribute a well thought out Principled perspective that addresses people where they are at. The goal is always to find members for the blessing and teach them DP. What's the point in having a different organisation to do that? This is why it remains nanoscopic in size and influence. It’s just the UC with a different name. I am not picking on WFWP, since other parts of the movement are not all that different. When I had the exhalted position of CARP leader in Britain I got really annoyed with church leaders who regarded it as the student branch of the UC whose primary purpose was to witness to students. Although some people can function in this way, when I try to I feel like a hypocrite and am being insincere (like what Tim was saying on inner unity).<br />I think believe it or not that Father and Mother are the True Parents of all mankind, not just the Moonies and a few people that go to the Blessing. The present UC structures though only reach afew people. All the people that are ever going to join such an organisation have already done so. (Ron Mac told me this 10 years and I finally have come to realise he is right.) In its presentform it will never be bigger than it is. So for me it is a tragedy that the UC seems to be the main blockage to people coming to understand and believe in the Principle and TP. Also we are not embracing and helping all the people who are not prepared. They are also God's children but what do we do for them to help them to develop a spiritual life? That is why I enjoy the work I am doing because through it I think that a vast number of people can benefit without having to have to come into contact with the UC.<br />I have recently been reminded of Jesus statement to his disciples that you are the yeast. I haven't ever tried making bread but Iget the impression that one mixes a small amount of yeast with the dough to make it rise. I think UC members should be like this. Going out into society participating in all the existing humanitarian, religious and political bodies, and businesses and being the yeast. Bringing a different spirit and perspective by their life and occasionally words. At the moment the UC is like a packet of damp yeast that is going mouldy. You can't make bread out of yeast alone. So instead of expecting the world to come to us and our meetings, I think we should go out to the world and their meetings.<br />That is the end of my sermon.<br />I'm going to England tomorrow. I'll be back on Tuesday. I'll try to see the Patriarch of London if he will grant me an audience.<br />William<br />Date: Sat, 22 Jun 96 05:21:16 +0400 (GMT+0400)Subject: <br />Re: OWC Re: First Ancestors/National Leaders<br />At 10:48 AM 96/6/14 +0400, William Haines wrote:<br />>>Oh God. So the rest of the UC around the world will go through what<br /> >>the American movement has gone through these past 20 years and end <br />>>up in the same state.<br />And Andrew replied: <br />>Dear William,<br />Well thanks for responding Andrew and keeping OWC afloat. I am just sorry that what follows will be a bit long winded.<br />>I find it interesting to read quite a few of the posts on OWC.<br />>I found your post interesting, too. But to be honest, I'm sort of<br />>wondering... your comment here intimates that the major causes of the<br />>problems in the UC of USA are resulting from the faults in the leadership<br />>system, or perhaps the personalities and characters, or actions of the<br />>leaders themselves. Is this a fair summery of your view?<br />I am not a member of the US UC community so I cannot say that what you outlined is a fair summary of my view since I don't have a detailed view about it. Just some impressions. I have visited a few times, been to the Seminary, heard from a lot of people who have worked there. From what I have seen and heard the movement went through a lot of difficult times. The impression I had was that a lot it was because of the fact that Father was there and so this is where the whirlwind was. Naturally enough in the attempt to fulfill what I consider to have been impossible goals there was a lot of pressure and a lot of eggs, as Lenin said, inevitably got broken to make the omelet. Had the omelet been made I suppose we would have accepted what happened as the price that had to be paid. But it wasn't made. So I think it is only natural to take stock and wonder why so that maybe we can do better next time around.<br />>I read most of the thread " invasion of USA" or something like that. I get<br />>the impression that the view of ascribing the probs of the USA-UC to the<br />>faults and mismanagement of the foreign leadership is certainly present, if<br />>not prevalent, in the US UC community.<br />Again I can't comment about America and in any case the " invasion of USA" expression was a straw man made by someone opposed to any criticism of foreign leadership. I like foreigners myself but there can be too much of a good thing.<br />In Britain we had a strong dose of Japanese and a bit of Korean leadership over the years. I think they were sincere and did their best. They undoubtedly contributed something of lasting value, but there were too many of them. For about 10 years people united, followed, did as they were told. I remember doing numerous all night prayer conditions, chain fasts, 40 day witnessing conditions, 7 day fasts etc. The promised results didn't come. On the contrary the church shrank, became inward looking, self righteous and the morale went down. The Church basically marginalised itself. It turned into a cult. <br />For many years no one wanted to and no one did find spiritual children. No one wanted to inflict such a life on their worst enemy. You can always tell when the people in a group are happy: other people want to join them. Yet no one could talk about the deep problems that existed. We were just living in a state of denial, being told we needed to repent and pray more, unite more etc. and trying to believe that this was true. Trying to convince ourselves that what we were hearing at Pledge service was true and that the strategy would work, that the nation would be restored, that we were the only group that had any significance in the country, that people in other groups couldn't grow spiritually. <br />I, and I am sure others, met many good people. Many people came to hear the DP yet few joined. Why? Because we were deeply unhappy and people felt it, however much we tried to cover it up and put on smiling faces. Why were we unhappy? Because there was something sick with our community. Something wrong with it. That's why many left. It just so happens that this sickness coincided with the growth of the foreign influence in our community, the introduction of pagan values by people who were not Christian and had little or no sense of the Judeo-Christian foundation of the nation.<br />So I think it was a mistake to treat them the way they were treated and asked to be treated: as representatives of the heavenly tradition who had come to teach us the true tradition. I think we listened to them too much, gave them too much power and authority. I think it was a mistake. I made that mistake. I don't blame them. I allowed myself to be cowed and wrongly dominated. <br />When I look at the British movement I am deeply disappointed. Had I known 20 years ago that it would end up the way it is I don't think I would have joined. I think many of the things we did were a waste of time. It would have been better to have done something else. I think the sensible people were the ones who got out of the system and followed their own lights or vocation. The result is that a large proportion of the members live on welfare. <br />In business management it is a general rule that there are no bad workers, only bad managers. Workers generally like to work. It is usually poor management that discourages and frustrates them and causes them to lose their motivation. Much the same in an army. A good general put in charge of a discouraged army is often able to lift the morale and discipline and turn them right around. The same goes for churches too. I grew up in the Church of England and witnessed the effect that different priests had on a congregation. I know of one thriving congregation which went through real problems when the old priest retired and was replaced by a new one who was unwilling or unable to listen, learn, inherit and build upon what had gone before, introducing new ideas from within the tradition instead of showing a lack of respect for what had gone before. So he hurt the hearts of the congregation through what he said and did. There again there are many stories of dying congregations resurrected by a new minister. <br />I have witnessed the same in the UC. I have done the same myself (both good and bad, though usually bad). As a leader (still today) I realize that I am responsible to a large extent for the spiritual welfare and morale of my community. I don't like being a leader because I am painfully aware that I am not a good one. <br />As I am in Russia I am actually a foreign leader myself and am not at all happy with the tradition that I have established or am teaching. I would say that the problems in my small sphere of influence are largely my making. I haven't done enough to understand and appreciate and recognize the good things about Russia so that the odd critical comment can be received in a way that can be accepted and will not cause hurt and thus only accentuate and make worse the thing pointed out. I would not dream of talking about Russia in the way that foreigners talked about my country when they were there. It is so tempting to think that one has come to teach the heavenly tradition, especially when one comes to a country that was only recently communist and all that that entails. I do hear some foreign missionaries putting guilt trips on the Russian members, telling them about how Cain they are and how they should feel guilty because the Soviet Union tried to kill father. It doesn't help them to be beaten about the head with what they already know. <br />I travel here quite a bit. I visit young churches in different countries. This year I have been to Poland, Latvia, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Bashkiria, Byelorussia and Russia of course. It is interesting to see how they develop and the impact and way of working of the foreign missionary(s). It is quite touching at times, yet also heart-rending when I see the same things I saw 20 years ago and can see the way it will lead. It is interesting to compare the community that is developing in Poland for example where there are hardly any foreign missionaries with Russia. Or the different cities within Russia some of which have many missionaries, others of which have one and a few of which no longer have any.<br />I remember how much scorn some people in the UC used to pour on Christian missionaries who went to Africa and how we would be different. Yet have we been or have we merely being repeating the mistakes made earlier? Is repetition restoration? As foreign missionaries do we go to learn or to teach? Do we go in the position of Cain or Abel? I think we are Cain. So these are some of the things I think about as a foreign missionary (for the C of E) and I assume Oriental leaders in America and elsewhere think about these things too. I know they do in Europe. Or maybe they just think the failure of the movement to develop or whatever in USA or elsewhere was all the fault of the native members. <br />>What surprises me is that this view seems to miss the possibility that<br />>there is some reason or cause behind this situation which the leaders are<br />>not in a position to resolve by themselves. The notion of restoration<br />>connotes that there are certain conditions which the fragmented parties<br />>must resolve in order to build or form a foundation which allows the<br />>intervention of God (or the Messiah) into that fragmented realm.<br />Of course. They can't resolve it by themselves. One of these conditions I think is that we honestly and humbly talk about it. <br />>Personally, I think the roots of the problem lie in our missing some of the<br />>key points of restoration truth, and that the leadership position thing is<br />>just a symptom of our miss, as a whole, to come to terms with the real<br />>content of our providential course. In other words, it is an effect, and<br />>not the problem itself.<br />I agree. We have really missed it. I think the way we went about it was a big mistake. That's why I don't think a lot of restoration took place. That's why I hope we don't repeat what has gone before. <br />I just think the way that I treated leaders in the past was a mistake. I didn't do what I believed was right. I didn't follow the calling I felt I had from God. I think it was a mistake to do the things I was asked to do as a matter of course. The only turning points in my life course I have no regrets about were the ones when I did not do as I was asked, when I took initiative and did something which appeared to be contrary to the providence. When I decided to join MFT, when I decided to leave MFT and go to University, when I decided to go to UTS, when I refused to be a regional leader in Moscow. The ones I regret were the ones when I accepted the mission I was given or did as I was told. The problem was that even though in 1979 Father proclaimed the end of the leader-centred movement, the leaders always managed to persuade us that we had to understand this properly and since we didn't know any better and wanted to go to the Blessing we went along with it. So yes. In that sense it was our fault. We were too naive and sheep like.<br />>The fact that there is still Abel-Cain fragmentation indicates that there<br />>is still content *and* form to be restored, and *both* sides of the line<br />>(both parties) are lacking some elements, which, due to the very nature <br />>of our restoration problem, can only be obtained when the unity of the<br />>fragmented parts has been internally and externally achieved.<br />I wrote a few things a while back about the Cain and Abel business. I don't really want to rehash it but I'll send it to you if you like. I agree that a lot of restoration needs to take place and that up until now I think we have got the wrong end of the stick most of the time which is why we just end up banging our heads against a brick wall again and again and never achieving this holy grail called unity.<br />>>As to the UC leader, I have no problems with their being appointed, but<br />>>they have too much power. It’s all so feudal.<br />>The only power they have is what's given to them. Or acquiesced to them. <br />I agree. I think we acquiesced too much in the past. I don't think we should any more. I am just afraid that the native members in the countries that these Korean elders are going to will make just the same mistake that we made (and I have no doubt will make all over again in Britain). If they do then its a case of deja vu I am afraid. Not a very inspiring prospect.<br />>Just think about how much some leaders need followers who can<br />>liberate them from all the barriers they have built around their hearts.<br />I do. That's why I think the way I do.<br />William<br />Date: Mon, 7 Oct 1996 23:50:07 +0400 (GMT+0400)<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />To: one-world-com@halcyon.com<br />Subject: OWC Re: Ideal nation<br />Hello all. Sorry for not replying to the flurry of posts about idealism. I have been very busy and was away for the weekend. So here is my rather belated and characteristically long-winded and iconoclastic response:<br />Brian rather surprisingly asked:<br />>>>If there is anyone out there who is eagerly awaiting the birth of the >>>ideal nation? <br />To which I rather bluntly replied:<br />>>Not me. I'm not an idealist. Never have been. Don't believe in <br />>>ideals, ideal people or ideal nations. Don't really even like <br />>>idealists. I like people though and enjoy visiting and living in <br />>>different nations. I think the whole enterprise to create ideal <br />>>people, an ideal nation and an ideal world is basically <br />>>misconceived.<br />A rather astonished Patrick followed up with:<br />>If you are not an idealist William, how did you ever get<br />>involved with this lot? What pulled you in? So you never lost<br />>your ideals because you didn't have any. Or is having ideals<br />>not making someone into an idealist? What about the ideals<br />>promoted by the principle ? If you hold to the truth of that principle,<br />>are you not an idealist ? <br />To which after I lost control of my fingers I say: How did I get involved? I hope you're not expecting a full blown testimony Patrick, although I suppose it might be fun to tell it one day. In short I thought the Principle gave a good explanation of life as I experienced it. It had a half-decent explanation about solving problems and a sensible vision. I liked the fact that there was no utopia sketched out. It was very open in that sense about the future and how it would evolve. (Afterwards I realised that most of that was just a front and that people really didn't believe in it) I also, in part from listening to his life, came to believe that Father was the Messiah. Being a Christian I naturally felt called to follow him. I can't say that I was very attracted by the members and even less by the organisation. It was and still is too totalitarian for my taste. I found most members to be incredibly naive and thought the worst possible disaster that could befall humanity was for such people to obtain positions of influence and power. There were others who were a lot more sensible. They have all left now.<br />I don't believe there are any ideals promoted by the principle. I can't recall the word ideal appearing in DP, at least not in the sense that most people seem to use it, namely a conception of something in its absolute perfection. One that is regarded as a standard or model of perfection or excellence, or an ultimate object of endeavor or goal.<br />Idealism is too statis for me and contrary to the way the world really is. I don't think there is an ideal human form a la Mr or Miss Universe or any ideal in other areas either. I think there are virtues that one should embody but one thing I notice about what one might call spiritually advanced people is their uniqueness and individuality. It is only really primitive forms of civilization such as totalitarianism that describe ideals that people are expected to conform to. <br />I just think people are different and I try to accept and love them as they are. I think things and people grow and change and evolve. I don't think there is any end state to be aimed for and even worse reached. In politics I don't think there is any single ideal system of government. There are different systems which are appropriate to different groups of people at different times. So I don't think there is an ideal nation. I don't think one could describe such a thing in any detail at all. All one could say is that there was freedom, happy stable families, little or no crime, peace with neighbouring countries and a few other generalities like this all of which can be expressed concretely in a myriad of ways. <br />Furthermore, I think this idealism business is the death of human relationships. For example, people expect a leader to be ideal. An ideal Abel or whatever. They expect him to fit into their conception of what a leader should be like. They expect him to fit into a box or model. Often they think he fits at first and become all inspired. When he doesn't they become disillusioned and disappointed and resentful at being let down. All this is, is a person projecting their own ideals onto someone else and getting upset when the person refuses or merely doesn't conform or live up to them. The same can be said about that elusive species, the ideal member. The content of the ideal is inevitably so external and superficial it again involves trying to get people to put on a straight jacket. The whole enterprise is basically selfcentred. Idealists don't love people. They love themselves and their own ideals and other people only to the extent that they conform to that ideal. I think Cain was an idealist.<br />The same often happens in love. It is called infatuation. Loving not a person warts and all but just an ideal which has little to do with reality. I think this is one of the reasons many blessings don't work out. People expect a certain ideal and get upset when that person isn't like that. I think it is just immature.<br />Idealists have too much faith for my liking. They are prepared to sacrifice the future for the present, although they call it the present for the future. Everything is an emergency which means that nothing is an emergency and things which ought to be done because they really are important are treated on the same level as things which are really trivial. All values get inverted. People become a means to an end. Eg fulfilling a numerical blessing goal instead of true love and having a happy family.<br />Idealists try to make other people and society conform to their idea of what is right. Since there is an ideal it means that anything that doesn't conform to that ideal not just of behaviour but also of belief is deviant, Satanic, evil or whatever and is ultimately to be destroyed. This is way of thinking that gives you fascism and communism of both the atheistic and religious varieties. It is so narrow and enervating. A straight jacket in which people are not allowed to follow their own lights or pursue their own vision or live their own life unless it is centred upon some whole purpose like a country mobilized for war. The result of such mobilization is the imposition of a plan, (the ideal) on society in which everyone is expected to fit into a designated position that has been allotted to them by those who know how the ideal is to be implemented. Ultimately I find idealism banal, vapid and boring. I like people as they are namely un-ideal. I can't bear people who try to be ideal. They are not real but merely cardboard cutouts saying the right things, believing the right things, doing the right things etc. I prefer the publican to the Pharisee.<br />>So you never lost your ideals because you didn't have any <br />People only get disillusioned when they allow themselves to get illusioned in the first place.<br />Illusion: <br />1. An erroneous perception of reality. b. An erroneous concept or belief.<br />2. The condition of being deceived by a false perception or belief. <br />3. Something, such as a fantastic plan or desire, that causes an erroneous belief or perception.<br />>What about the ideals promoted by the principle ?<br />Name a few for me and I will tell you what I think of them assuming they are ideals promoted by the Principle as opposed to the normal platitudes one comes across everywhere.<br />>If you hold to the truth of that principle, are you not an idealist ? <br />No. I really don't think the Principle is idealistic anymore than the Old and New Testaments or indeed any serious religious texts. Idealists who describe their utopia in great detail are all ultimately atheistic since an ideal is closed and doesn't allow for spontaneity and doesn't allow space for God to work and be present. I think DP it is often understood and taught as if it were idealistic but I think that is the problem that many people in the UC come from a socialist background. The Abel-type trend that gave us liberal democracy is profoundly sceptical and not idealistic apart from Locke who tried to create an ideal based on and to protect scepticism. <br />I think I'd better stop here or we'll be off into the democracy debate again.<br />William<br />Date: Thu, 10 Oct 1996 17:00:19 +0400 (WSU DST)<br />From: ief@glas.apc.org (William Haines)<br />Subject: Re: OWC Ideal world<br />Brian:<br />>I enjoyed William' long diatribe.<br />Thanks.<br />>It got me thinking about Physics. In the reality of sub-atomic particles <br />>there is something called the Uncertainty Principle. Basically it deals with <br />>the impossibly of predicting both the velocity and position of a particle at <br />>any point in time. The velocity of a particle may be predicted - but not its<br />>position and vice versa. <br />>There is a parallel here perhaps with our more familiar world. We can say<br /> >that there must be an ideal state -but we cannot say what it should be <br />>like. Vice versa, we can say what a state should be like but we cannot say <br />>it is ideal. <br />I like your analogy but don't think it proves what you want it to prove. We can say there must be an ideal state. But we can just as easily, and think more sensibly, say there is not. <br />>Similarly, we cannot describe the ideal person, relationship or anything <br />>else. Although we can conclude that they exist.<br />I haven't concluded that ideal people relationships or anything else exist. I think the whole thing is a chimera the pursuit of which leaves one perpetually frustrated and disappointed. I think idealism is a disease that should carry a health warning. <br />I think myself that most of the most important and interesting things in life lie outside the realm of pure reason. Reason cannot grasp the inherent messiness there is in the real world and although it is necessary and useful for making sense of it can never do so comprehensively. There is always an element of mystery that can never be completely fathomed. For example although I find Graham's analysis of DP and much else both entertaining, enlightening and necessary in the light of a taboo (often just self-imposed) on thinking and intelligent discussion in the past, ultimately I think he is going to fall into the same pit as Deists such as Tindal and Tolland in the 18th Century. There is much that cannot be explained rationally and I think the assertions in DP that it can are rather naive. The DP itself as Graham never tires of demonstrating is itself as incoherent as the Bible. But then real life is not all that coherent and explicable.<br />I just find idealism to be grossly overated and in sore need of a dose of scepticism.<br />William<br />

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