Sermon: Regain Your Subjectivity (January 26, 2008)

Rev. Hyung Jin Nim Sermon Head Quarter, Chungpadong, Seoul January 26, 2008

Our destiny is not to be a person that always criticizes ourselves, that tells other people (that) they can’t do anything right, that tells ourselves that we can’t do things right or that we have no talents, that we have no ability. That is not our destiny. That is not what God intends us to do. Instead, we are made in His image. We’re supposed to be creative. We are filled with wisdom, power. We are filled with the ability to overcome obstacles, to remain focused.

Yeon Ah Nim’s Message:

About a week ago, we got a letter from a Japanese brother. It was a letter about his decision to go back to Japan. He was originally planning to stay in Korea for 4 or 5 years in order to learn Korean, while his family was in Japan. But he said that after attending our services regularly, he realized that the most important thing he needs to take care of is his family, and we were happy for his decision.

He said that, according to researchers, a child who does not get enough adequate attention from his/her parents before the age of 6, will try to GET attention. There is a lack in their early stage of life. So they do anything to get attention even though it is a negative attention (even in a negative way).

Another interesting thing I always remind myself of when I feel very frustrated about my children – which can happen sometimes, honestly speaking, frequently can happen – I always remind myself that we are living in the time (that this is the time) to build a relationship with my children. Somebody once told me that after the age of 12 it is very hard to rebuild the relationship back with our own children. But what if my children are already teenagers or they are already grown up and they’re blessed already?

Well, how about just like writing letters or e-mails regularly that emphasize why they are blessings to your life, and how you want to be a bigger blessing and change yourself into a bigger blessing for other people.

What I believe about parenting is that there is no flowers formula (no general formula). So brothers and sisters, please love your children. Don’t spoil them but love them so much and tell them how precious they are in your eyes and God’s eyes. Because you’re the only one in this entire universe who can teach your children about God’s love.

Brothers and Sisters, always remember that Heavenly Father loves our children. We love you so much and we believe in you… AJU!!!

Interesting Story (Hyung Jin Nim):

I heard an interesting story that I came across and it was about a young man. His mother came to him – it was sunday morning – and she shook him and she said, “Hurry up, Tony its time to go to church! Hurry and get up.” And he said, “Mom, I’m not gonna go to church.” She tried to convince him, tried to get him out of the bed. But he kept on, went under his blanket and she said, “Tony, you better get up, we have to go to church.”
So Tony got up and he said, “Mom, I’m gonna give you two reasons why I’m not gonna go to church. Number one: Nobody likes me and I don’t like THEM.”(laughter from audience) And mom said, “Well, let me give you two reasons why you ARE going to Church. Number one: you’re 53 years old and Number two: you’re the Pastor!”(Laugh)

Sermon (Hyung Jin Nim):

Today I want to talk about Regaining Subjectivity in our lives. When we look at the Principles, (it is) such a wonderful system of the whole notion of Give and Take or being with the subject and having an object. We see in the Principles of course that notion of the 3 Objective Purpose, that depending on who is the subject at a certain time there are different objects.

And it is important in our life – when we are going to live the blessed life that our True Parents blessed us to live – (it is so important) to understand that we have to continue to regain and re-claim our subjectivity or subject position in our life. If we look at it from the Principle Perspective it’s interesting to know that the subject is actually the first to give, it’s not that the subject is waiting to receive from the object. The subject actually has to give first.

So husbands, if you’re wishing to receive love from your wife, what do you have to do? You’ve got to give it first. Wives, if you want to receive love from your husband and be subject, you have to give love first, in advance. Ok?

In our lives as well it’s very important to regain that subject position of our minds, of our mind life, and to live free in that mind. Its so easy to fall into temptations but its very hard to live with the guilt that we receive from such actions, from a stinging conscience. Its very hard to live like that. Let us see it like this: Our mind is almost like our internal environment. True Father describes it like this, “Sok Saram and Kut Saram”. That basically means your internal self and your external self. The person outside (external person) and the person inside (inner person).

The person outside of is course the person that everybody sees but we have to really attend that inner person. It’s almost as if there’s a certain environment in our minds. And then we are rearing or raising a little child at first in that environment. And as any parents would want to surround their child with a good environment, healthy food, positive words of encouragement, (in the same way) it’s very important in our mind life, in our own mind environment, to protect that inner self within, to be able to shield it with good nurturing, encouragements. It is important to know that we need to feed it the right things for it to grow, (so that it can) mature into what God wants it to become.

In the same way, if we are filling our minds with negative thoughts about ourselves, if we are filling them with words like, “Oh, I’m never good with this. I’m not qualified. I’m not really that talented. I can’t really do anything right. Nothing really good happens to me.”…. if we’re doing such things in our minds then we are feeding that child, that inner self, with those kinds of elements. And thus, as a child can become sick, we can also go more and more to the decrease instead of increase. We don’t want to do that.

What are parents doing? One of the initial practises of a parent that you have to learn quickly is to change diapers. Any parents have done that. We have 5 kids, we change a lot of diapers, or we did – they’re bigger now, none of them is wearing diapers now, trust me, because they’re big. But it is same with our minds. Sometimes we can allow thoughts to come into our mind that harm the child (inner self), things that are not good for him, not clean for him.

Maybe somebody spoke negative words over our lives. Maybe they told us that we’re going to fail, that we have no chance to succeed. And if we let that come in (into our mind), that will poison the environment in our lives. And in just the same way it will start affecting negatively the inner self that True Father is talking about. So in the same way, whenever we have that situation we cannot start cleaning a baby. We cannot change the dirty diapers and put on another dirty diaper. That is not the way to provide cleanliness for our inner self.

In the same way, maybe somebody spoke over us something that is very negative. We have to get that out of our environment. We have to learn how to objectify that and get it out of the environment and then continue to nurture that environment, so that that child, that inner self, can grow.

There’s a very simple practise, and that is the practise of objectification. And that practise is a very simple mind practise and you can all utilize it in your lives, actually right now and today. But the whole notion is that we need to re-claim our subjectivity over our mind life and over our mind environment. And we have to learn the practise of objectification, that is to remove these things from our mind environment.

Every time we say “Nothing right happens to me. I’m dumb. I’m not attractive, nobody likes me or I can’t do it right or I always fail.”….. When we say such things we have to immediately notice them, objectify them, separate them from us and rid (remove) them from that mind environment.

Our destiny is not to be a person that always criticizes ourselves, that tells other people (that) they can’t do anything right, that tells ourselves that we can’t do things right or that we have no talents, that we have no ability. That is not our destiny. That is not what God intends us to do. Instead, we are made in His image. We’re supposed to be creative. We are filled with wisdom, power. We are filled with the ability to overcome obstacles, to remain focused.

We have all these wonderful blessings in our lives. It’s so important that we’re able to cultivate those things and rid ourselves (separate ourselves) from all the things in our environment that may be hurting us. When we look at the story of Jesus, in Matthew 4:1-11, we see the whole story of the temptations of Christ, where Satan is tempting Jesus. And you remember that third temptation when Jesus was taken by Satan up to the highest mountain and Satan said, “I will give all the kingdoms of the land (world) if you bow down and worship me.” And we can see that Christ overcame that temptation. He was able to protect his God given destiny.

In the same way it is important that when WE are given temptations in our lives, that we are able to overcome them and continue to rise to be the best person that we can become. It’s interesting also to know that in the Buddhist tradition, in the Bada Na Sutta Nipata – and this is the Pali Pali kind (short version) of the old tradition of Telibana – it is very interesting to know that the Buddha also had temptations in his own life. Many people, when they study Buddhism – and I studied Buddhism quite a bit – many people know that Buddhism is a very peaceful art. It is very peace loving, etc.

But when you look at the actual phraseology here, we see that Buddha took a very strong stance against temptation. In the Buddhist tradition Satan is Mara, it’s the same kind of figure. But it is known as Mara. And the Buddha utters (says) such things as this, “No one but the brave (only a brave person) will conquer the temptations of Mara.” Very strong words. “Better I die in battle now then to live in defeat. For I have faith, energy and wisdom, too.” The interesting thing to know is that both, Jesus and Buddha, are saints in OUR tradition (Unification tradition) as well. And that they both had to take a very strong stance against things that were coming into their mind environment and into their hearts. They had to really take a strong stance, “Better I die in battle now.”

And when WE are overcome and when we are being hit by the temptations of things that are around us, or even by things in our minds, when we are tempted to think that we are incapable, when we are tempted to think that we have no value, when we are tempted by such things, when we are tempted to believe that we have no right to be happy or to be the blessed people that True Parents (want us to be)….. when we are tempted to do such things, we have to take a strong stance in our minds. We have to protect our minds, shield them from such things that are entering in.
We can do a very simple practise here, it’s a very simple meditative mind practise. It’s the practise of objectification and it will take just a couple of minutes. I would like to invite you to just close your eyes now. Let us now start to objectify the thoughts in our minds. We will simply give a name to any thought that you have in your minds, we will objectify it and label it, we will name it. It may be anything in your mind, just where your mind goes. We may be thinking a thought and say, “I’m thinking now…” and just objectify it. Look at the thought as an entity (as something) separate from your mind. Your mind may be paying attention to your arm, or your leg. If that is the case you simply say “My focus is on my leg or my arm.” Just continue to objectify everything that your mind is doing.. Simple, very simple practise, just the practise of objectification.

It is almost as if you are describing what your mind is doing, as if you are watching it from a third person’s perspective and describing what it is doing: “It’s going over here, it’s going to that sound, it goes to this sensation of my body. It’s going to this thought.”– Just describe what is happening.

May I ask you now to open your eyes. You see, very quickly you can start to see, that, as you objectify things from your mind, you have distance from them. You have actually more control over such things. They have less ability to control YOU. It is very important that, when we are tempted by such things in our lives, just as Jesus was, that we can separate them from ourselves and that we can know that we are in the subject role and that we can regain and restore our subject position and remain in it.

There are particularly many brothers and sisters who write us and who are very concerned with such negative past, asking us a lot of questions on how we can deal with such things or maybe with negative circumstances in our lives right now. It’s very important to objectify. In our lives we may have negative memories or afflictions. We may have certain experiences in our lives. It is very important to learn how to objectify those things and then to use them, not to harm you and not to harm anybody else, but to use them almost as fuel for your rocket ship, so that you can be propelled forward, not fired to hurt other people, but to use them almost as fuel to give us energy.

People have done this consistently throughout history. Let’s take the example of anger. Martin Luther King took the energy of anger, that holy anger within him, and changed that into his dream. He changed that into a dream of seeing his brothers and sisters, white and black, being able to stand side by side in harmony, in happiness, etc., where they are equal, where they are fully brothers. He took that anger and changed it into a dream. In the same way, he had to objectify, he had to not allow that (anger) to poison his internal mind environment and (instead) use it as a power or fuel to propel him into a great vision and a great work.
And Nelson Mandela said, “Resentment is like drinking a poison and hoping that it will kill your enemy.” And he said, “Resentment needs to be transformed into blessings.”

And in the same way, when WE are maybe dealing with issues, when we resent somebody who said something bad to us or whatever circumstances we may have had, then let us use that experience as something that gives us power, so that we can declare, “I’m never gonna let myself do what that other person did to me. I’m gonna be a blessing to every single person that I meet. Instead of speaking negative words about them, I will not do that (speak negative words), I will encourage people. I will try to support people, lift them up. I’ll try to help them see their God given destiny.”

Once we learn to objectify these certain mind states, we can start learning how to transform them into power and fuel.

My wife gave me an example: Oprah Winfrey said that she could have made the excuse that she had a negative childhood and thus she should never be successful. But she said “Because I had a negative childhood, I will succeed.”

You see how she turned that around. She didn’t use that as a justification to say, ” I’m gonna be defeated, I’m not gonna rise higher. I’m not going to try any more.” But she said, “Because I had a bad childhood I’m stronger, I’m gonna rise up higher. I’m gonna be even more successful.” In the same way, when we learn how to objectify our minds we regain the subject position in our hearts. We start regaining power in our lives, control over our lives.

And then we start lessening (making smaller) the power of the archangels in our lives, the power of the people who are trying to curse us, who are trying to bring us down. (We are lessening) the power of the circumstances that make you not believe in yourself anymore.

So it’s very important to learn how to regain subjectivity in our lives. I really find this practise very important because when we are raising our children it is also for them very important to learn how to objectify.

I’ll give you an example: I have lots of boys in my house, we have 4 boys, and boys are very loud and make a big ruckus (noise). I remember one episode where my older boy was on a chair and he was about to throw a toy, a very hard toy, a truck, at my other boy, because they were arguing about something. And my other boy on the floor was swinging a sword at him saying, “You want to throw that truck?”(laughter in audience).

I saw that circumstance (situation) and normally a parent in that circumstance would say, “You children, what are you doing? You’re bad, bad, bad children! Stop that!!” But we used the practise of objectification. In that situation we said, “Ooohhh, wait! I see a boy, a very angry boy, on the chair, about to throw a truck. And I see a boy on the ground swinging a sword.”

You see, once we objectified that, they realized, they drew a picture in their minds of what was happening. (Before that) they were caught up in the emotions, they couldn’t see themselves, but we objectified for them and said, “Hey, I see a very angry boy on the chair, about to throw a red truck, and I see another guy, swinging a sword at him saying, “Come on, come on.”

Once we did that, they were able to see themselves, “Wait a minute, we don’t …. that’s not us.” We quickly saw that subside (We saw the situation calm down quickly). Once we did that (objectification) we allowed them to objectify, allowed them to see themselves from a third party’s perspective. And then, of course, at that time, we asked them, “Hey, do you guys think, this is what loving brothers would do to each other?” And they said “No, etc… we had a nice time.”(laughter).And all things came back to peace.

In our lives it’s so important that we learn this practise. I heard a story (about a situation) that every husband has. He called it “the terror of the red shoes”.

Let me describe that to you a little bit. This husband was describing to me, “We are preparing some event. My wife is trying on different shoes or different outfits. And she asks me, ‘Which shoes I should wear, the black ones or the red ones?'” And for a man this is a very hard question(laughter from the audience). We don’t know how to answer! So he said, ” Honey, the red ones are good.” And she said, “What’s wrong with the black ones?” (laughter). And he said, “Well, OK, the black ones are good then.” And she said, “You just said the red ones are good!”(more laughter). And they got into a fight and argument and a big ruckus came out. That was not what he intended.

This is not how we’re supposed to approach that situation. If we learn to objectify, we will be able to deal with that situation in a better manner.

So let’s say we are in that situation. I practised it on myself, so I can testify to it’s effectiveness. So if my wife will ask me, “Ok, we have this big occasion and True Parents will be there and all the members of True Family will be there, so which one should I do (wear)?” Well, (then) I practise in my mind , objectify, describe the situation, “Well, I see a beautiful woman, I see her with a black skirt and a blue top, I see this kind of earrings, and I see red lips. So if you want to match the red you have got to wear the red shoes. But if you want the black shoes to pick up (match) your beautiful black hair and your bag then wear the black shoes.” (laughter).

And then I’ll ask her, “What do YOU think?” And she would say, “Well, I was leaning to the black shoes.” And I said “Well, that’s a great choice.(so much laughter at the audience) Black shoes are great choice.”

You see, we have got to learn how to use this practise in our day to day lives. And it’s very important that we learn to objectify such things, to learn the practise of objectification. It gives you more control in your life and it allows you the ability to describe your situation, so that you can actually make better decisions.

I was on the plane going to Japan. And right next to me – we always ride in economy class there – right next to me was this young Korean couple, travelling to Japan. They were in 20’s. They were hugging and focusing on each other the whole trip! The whole trip they were holding hands and in their blankets and whatever. So I’m sitting there trying to focus on reading my book.

And you know, I thought to objectify this picture, “OK, I’m gonna start to see this from a heavenly perspective. I’m going to see this from the top perspective.” And I thought, “Ok, I see a loving couple…..” – and one thing surprised me quite a lot, to such an extent that I really had to actually look at myself. When meal time comes, you get a little package in which your silver ware is inside, as you all know. You have to open it up and set your table.

So the stewardess brought the meal and the young man proceeded to open his wife’s or girlfriend’s package and laid out her silver ware. And I looked it and thought, “Come on! She’s not going to melt if she touches her silver ware.” (laughter).

So I was sitting there and thinking, ” Actually when I travel with my wife we are pretty much focused on each other. We are talking to each other the whole trip.” But I realized that I don’t set the table for her.(laugh). When the food comes I don’t open the packet and set the table for her. So I let that moment (that I had on the plane) be an inspirational moment. And I tried to say, “Ok, God is trying to tell me something. He trying to ask me to rise higher. He’s trying to ask me to become a better husband.”

So the whole trip to Japan I was thinking, “Ok, when I get back home I’m gonna set my wife’s table. (laughter) I’m gonna set a feast before her!” (laughter and applause).

Father said, we have to honor our wife like a queen and she will then honor us back as a king. So let’s do that and honor God as a blessed couple.

So I said to my wife, “Yobo, I’m gonna honor you when I get back. I was inspired by the young couple in the plane. I’m gonna set the table when I go back.” (laugh). And I did. I got home and did that and she said a really wonderful encouraging thing, “Yobo, you are my king and I’m your queen.”(laughter and applause).

This is so important. In life there are many opportunities that we might miss. I was in the airport and standing in this really long line. There were about hundred people, and the line was moving so slowly. It was just so frustrating. And I looked up and saw the sign and I noticed that it was the connections line and not the arrivals line. I was in Japan and I had to get off in that airport. But I was standing in the wrong line.

I was getting frustrated because the line was long. I was getting aggravated (upset) because the people did not understand what I was saying. But I realized, “Wait a minute, I’m in the wrong line.”

I try to use that as an example how God was trying to speak to me. God told me that in our life we have to learn how to arrive where God is trying to get us. Sometimes we’re trying to get into the line of arrivals but we’re standing in the connections line. And its important to know where we are, to know what is in our environment.

The real problem here was that I was not aware of my environment. I was just following where the people were going and I was not paying attention to the general environment, to the signs that said that this is the connections and that is the arrivals.

In the same way it is so important that we learn to be aware of the environment of our mind, so that we will know that we are not in the connection line, so that we will know that we are arriving every moment where God wants to bring us, whether it might be (into) a circumstance or an obstacle or things with our kids or things with our spouse or whatever. Then we can rise to a higher level.

There are so many opportunities. If we take advantage of them we can rise to higher in our lives.

If we can learn anything from today then let’s remember that it is so important to regain our subjectivity in our lives. It’s so important that we learn how to protect our internal self. Remember that ‘Sok Saram’, the internal self, and ‘Kut Saram’, the external self. Let’s protect ourselves. Don’t let any person who opposes you or any circumstance that is trying to pull you down, feed your environment. Because otherwise your inner self will start being nourished by that environment.

It’s very important that we protect our environment, that we fill it with life filling words, life filling thoughts, with faithful words, with practise, so that our lives can become greater and greater.

Like Jesus and the Buddha, lets learn to objectify, lets learn to rid (remove) things that are negative in our lives, in our minds. Take them out of the mental environment so that we can have a strong and healthy environment in which our inner self can grow.

If we learn how to objectify situations we will create more peace. We will learn how to see things from a further perspective. (We will learn to) not always get caught in the emotions of the events, but learn how to see things a little bit from a distance, so that we can step back, notice them (the emotions) and will be able to make better decisions in our lives.

Let’s make sure that we don’t stand in that connections line. Be aware of that (your) mind environment. Know where your mind is. Let’s stay aware. Let’s be arriving where God wants us to arrive. If we can do that, I do believe that we will always rise higher, to more Victory, to more Illumination and to more Peace.

Brother and sisters, can you receive this message today?
Yes (from the audience)
Thank you so much!!!

Let’s declare this together:

“True Parents, I have repented for my wrong doings. Make me a holy palace of your peace, your love and your lineage.”

Hyung Jin Nim then said, “If we declare this in our lives today, we really believe that you are a spiritual child of True Parents, that you have started as being a true child. We really want to welcome you home. You are coming back home, return home. Please keep True Parents enthroned in your heart. If you do that they will raise you to more Victory, they will raise you to more Illumination and they will raise you to more Peace than you can ever possibly imagine.

Edited by: Kenshow Kuk-hee

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