Part 13 of 36
Mutual prosperity is like the term peace. Almost anyone wants it but how it comes about is the question. We’ve seen governments plan and control its people but still there isn’t equal living conditions for all. Especially in advanced countries, there is destructive competition and self-promoting aggressive tactics to gain wealth without regard to the public safety or well-being. I’ve pondered the question of mutual prosperity and have concluded it’s only possible with true love.
True Love and True Parents
Primarily, we need to grow our hearts and mature in love. To have the perfect environment to develop to our full potential of love, we need True Parents. Sometimes when I mention the story of the Garden of Eden to people, I feel their invisible eyes rolling as in, “What does that have to do with anything? That’s so make believe!” Of course, if you think it’s a woman and man being tempted and eating an apple, that could make it an irrelevant event even if it did really happen. But what if the apple was a symbol for sexual love and God as the Heavenly Parent knew the motivation for the lovemaking between the devil and Eve, and then Adam and Eve was self-centered and immature? What impact would that have on their family? Would the first parents of humankind be able to create an environment of true love?
We need to grow our heart and mature through the realms of heart. I felt something was missing when my family discussed how to work for peace. Later, I found the answer to what was missing when I heard the presentation of the Garden of Eden events. This concept of the need for True Parents is a revelation! No one has been able to feel the deep heart of God naturally through the realms of heart in the family. Instead, an immature, self-absorbed family multiplied to the kind of world we have today.
The Role of the Family
This may seem far off the subject of mutual prosperity, but the concepts of mature love and True Parents have everything to do with economics. In a well-functioning family, the home and general areas of the house belong to everyone even though the parents legally own the house. Each person in the family may have their own room and personal possessions plus share in their appropriate responsibilities such as chores, cooking, childcare, bill paying l, etc. At the same time, they work as a unit and watch out for the needs of each other.
Families multiply this same attitude toward their communities, societies, nations, and world. The empowerment of individuals is instigated by the relationships of families. If the children feel love and an attitude of giving from their parents, and if they inherit an empathic heart, they will naturally take care of others. That incentive to give and care about others will then be reflected in the society. Teachers will be an extension of parental heart to students, business owners will be mentors to their employees, and community workers will uplift the needs of its people. The underlying characteristic of heart is the impulse for relatedness: to feel joy through loving and being loved.
The interests of the individual family members coincide with the interests of the whole family. The family’s interest in a society is fulfilled in conjunction with the whole purpose of the society. And on and on… The economic activities of people who have the maturity to balance the individual and whole purposes would manifest true love and gratitude. When there’s an environment of true love, there won’t be greed or corruption. The aim of economic activity would not be in pursuit of profit alone but for the overall welfare of others.
Living for the Sake of Others
With maturity we can balance the individual and whole purposes, engage in cooperation transcending nationality or race, and create harmony when differences emerge. A world where adults mature in heart is a world where people can live in happiness. Father Moon described an ideal community:
This community is that of an extended family in which people are conscious of being the sons and daughters of the one God and become a single fraternity under the True Parents.[i]
We call Father and Mother Moon "True Parents" because we, the worldwide movement and community, have seen the type of individuals and couple they are. No one can keep up the pace of loving and giving they have demonstrated all their lives even during extreme persecution, torture, and heartaches. They have set the example of living for the sake of others.
I was able to experience this first hand when I stayed together in a house with them in Hawaii for a few days. Before Father and Mother arrived, the small international group of members were working through the night preparing everything. This was the first time in my life I went so long without sleep, but the atmosphere was so heavenly, I didn’t notice. One afternoon, we noticed the stream across the street was becoming a flooding river and it was approaching our house. Everyone went to the basement and started bringing suitcases and other things upstairs. At one point, Mother Moon was coming down the stairs while I was going up. As she passed, she touched my arm with a reassuring and grateful look. It made me wish I could live here together with this group forever. Even though our house was about to be flooded, I was ecstatic because of the feeling of cooperation and harmony. The flood didn’t come in the house too much, but it did go in the cars. There was no complaint. Instead people pitched in and wiped the cars down with towels.
A day or two later, there was a big banquet and Father Moon spoke. I never had been to such a fancy meal and I felt awkward. For some reason, this situation made me struggle. I had felt at home with the members but now I felt I didn’t belong. I was used to sitting around a living room while Father Moon gave us guidance in a close and personal way. When I saw him speaking at this elaborate place, I felt distant, like a person from a lower-class background would feel in a palace. When we got back home, I went to my room to be alone in my misery. Within seconds a person came and asked me to get some glasses of water. Usually, other members would serve the table with Father and Mother Moon and other leaders. At this moment, of all moments, I wanted to hide but the other members said no, you serve the water. Since I’d never done any of the serving, I felt like I stumbled into the room to serve the water. Father Moon asked me my name, age, and what activities I was involved in. Then he told me my name in Japanese is Kazuko. Later I found out that Kazuko means “child of peace.” Father Moon must have felt my vibe of feeling distant and reached out to me. There was nothing extraordinary in what he said but it lifted my spirit and let me feel valuable again.
One person can’t accomplish mutual prosperity. No one is alone. Just as an eye, limb, ear etc. doesn’t function well without the other, so the ideal society will feel disabled if other societies aren’t prospering. When mature people from enriched families work together, mutual prosperity can abide.
What do you think about mutual prosperity?
How do you think mutual prosperity can come about?
Have you ever felt like a second-class citizen?
What do you do when you are struggling internally?
How do you respond to someone who seems down?
What can you do to uplift the environment where you live, work, and/or study?
[i] Moon, Sun Myung. Cheon Seong Gyeong. 2014. Book 16. Chapter 2. Section 4.2.2