October 3, 2010, Cheon Bok Gung, Yongsan Seoul Korea
Today I want to talk to you about the starting point of Heaven. Usually when we start, we begin by going to the World Scriptures, and also our Biblical Scriptures; but today, because the Blessing is next week, we are going to focus on the central text, or the primary text, True Parents words. So today we are going to go to True Parents’ collection of words and speeches, Volume 26. Let’s read together. “Man and woman are God’s masterpieces; when they love each other centered on God, it is supreme transcendental love, not worldly love.” Aju. The second one comes from the selection of speeches 279, and let’s read together.
“Marriage joins the life of a woman and the life of a man. In time, through children, it joins the lineage of the man, and the lineage of the woman. It thus begins a history, a nation, the world, and the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth.” Aju. And the third one comes to us from Volume 97. Let’s read together. “We marry for the sake of our partner. Therefore the man should have the attitude that even [if] he finds some aspects of his wife unattractive, he will love her even more than if she were beautiful.”
This is the Principled way. This is not only for men, okay? This is also for both spouses. In society there is a common phrase, or common notion that love really can last three years at the maximum. So there is a particular hormone that is released that gives you the predicted newly wed, honeymoon stage, etc., and you feel infatuated and in love for three years, maybe max.
In Korea there is the playful joking that after three years it becomes all about “Chung,” and you just become used to the person, and you just stay married because you are used to them now. And they even say that it is “mew in Chung”. I don’t know how to translate that in English. I don’t know how to translate it, but it means something like, “even though you can’t find everything attractive about this person, you basically stick with it.” I don’t know if that is a great translation, you are going to have to look it up; study your Korean, and do the Mew in Chung, okay? But this is NOT a Principled perspective. Father speaks of this relationship, the couple true love relationship, as the beginning of the Kingdom of Heaven.
So this is why we are going to focus in on this realm of love, because one week later we have the blessing. So in this week, looking over Father’s many, many incredible words about a couple’s true love relationship in my own mind, I delineated it into eight different stages, or levels. Now there are many, many profound statements from True Father, but in order to digest this a little easier, I organized this into eight stages…what I call “The Couples True Love Stages.” Okay, we’ll go over these briefly, and then we’ll go through them very briefly. You could write a book on this; I may even write a book about this. We’ll go through them briefly today.
The first stage is ATTRACTION. There is an attraction. The second stage is GIVE AND RECEIVE ACTION, which is the beginning of giving and receiving action.
The third stage is EVOLUTION. There is growth and development. The fourth stage is UNITY OF PURPOSE AND MISSION, or external oneness. The fifth level would be INTIMACY, deeper intimacy. This is how it is translated in Korean, as the INTERNAL ONENESS. In English you have this sense, but in Korean we didn’t have this sense of language; and so number four is external oneness, and number five is internal oneness.
Number six is SURRENDERING TO LOVE.
Number seven is TRANSENDANCE.
Number eight is THE KINGDOM OF GOD; okay, the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN.
So, let’s go briefly through this, as we prepare ourselves for the blessing.
Number one; we go through the first stage, the ATTRACTION stage. This is not simply physical attraction, “Oh he is handsome, she is beautiful.” Not just this kind of physical attraction. Here we are attracted to each other as newly blessed husband and wife. There is something mysterious, unknown, and undiscovered about this person. There is a desire to connect with this person; and so it is not just a physical attraction. It is this different mysterious attraction that also exists at the first level. There are also expectations that we already have, and notions that are strongly at play at this level of attraction.
Then we move to the second stage, which is the beginning of GIVE AND TAKE ACTION. In this stage, we begin to be with our spouse; and so we begin to give and receive. We begin to move the give and receive action. Here we start learning about the different habits, and the different notions of our spouse. We start giving and receiving, and in this give and receive action we find that there are points that we are completely one on, and then some points that we completely disagree on. And at this stage it is very easy to begin judging your spouse, because of their different expectations.
One spouse thinks having a career is very important for his wife. Another remembers his Mom always being home and taking care of the children. So again transfer of conflict. One spouse thinks making money is the most important thing, while the other thinks that donating to higher causes is the most important thing. One spouse thinks they should focus on personal happiness, the other spouse thinks, no, God’s happiness. So here at the give and receive action stage, there is the learning of similarities, but also the differences. At this give and receive beginning stage, the differences start to become noticed, and many give up here at this stage, saying “Well we don’t match so well. I think I’ll break up and get blessed next time”. This is the stage where many blessings fail. Many people get stuck here, even for 30 years. They can get stuck at this level, the second level where you are just starting the give and receive action. But we have to remember that the marriage is never stagnant. It does not stay the same. It is always evolving and moving in the direction in which it is led. So here it is important to be open hearted, be patient, and empathizing with the other person’s perspective. In essence, this is to keep the give and receive action moving, not just giving up and saying, “Oh, it’s over.” When we got blessed, my sister gave me wonderful advice. She said, “When you get blessed, and you have an argument with your wife, you must never let it go on to the next day; you must resolve it that day. And you must have a situation where you can WIN/WIN.” So that is the place where we are training in those levels.
The third stage is EVOLUTION-growth and evolution, or growth and development. And at this stage, the couples are now mature. Many people don’t even reach this stage of the stages of love. Many people cannot even reach this stage. At this stage the couples are mature. This means that they understand that the differences are not an excuse for breaking the blessing. They are now mature enough to understand that even though they have those differences; it is not enough to destroy this blessing. They begin to evolve and open themselves up to considering and adjusting to the other one’s wants and expectations. And just by the fact of trying to empathize with the other, their upbringing, or their life style, or their perspective, how they grew up, etc.; then there is a move towards accommodating, and beginning to attempt to change oneself in small ways, beginning in small ways, and then allowing the give and receive to flow more naturally.
I remember when I first got married, I was in the bathroom and preparing for sleep, and brushing my teeth, and the toothpaste ran out. So I threw it away. Then I went in a couple of minutes later, and the toothpaste was out. It jumped out of the garbage can, and it was on the sink, but it was cut in half. As I investigated this mysterious phenomenon, I realized that my wife had cut the tube of toothpaste and was brushing her teeth, and digging out the remaining toothpaste inside. There was still a lot of toothpaste near the top, the cap, and so she was digging it out. When I saw this, then I realized as she explained to me that her father was a minister, and her mother taught her to always have respect, be frugal, not stingy, but be frugal; because, many times as a minister you would have to move in difficult situations. So you learned to be frugal.
And at this stage, if I were just to judge her and to say, “This is terrible,” then from this small thing can come a misunderstanding. But in understanding that is her upbringing, that is a good heart; that is a good practice to be frugal in that realm; that’s good. So in understanding that, I could grow, and also this kind of give and receive we could see in our own relationship. Here we evolve and are becoming more and more united, from small things first, to greater and bigger things.
Now stage four is the unity, or what we call the external unity of purpose and mission. Here in this stage we are now moving into the stage of unity. Both have been evolving and growing and developing and now are becoming more accommodating to one another. You are now more pleasing to be around. You are not so annoying to be around anymore. You are now more pleasing to be around, and both are making effort continuously for unity. Now both are investing real effort, putting in purposeful effort. Here the unity comes in the form of the common purpose, and the common direction. You have come this far, and have evolved, and invested energy and time, and grown the marriage to this level, so now this marriage is much more precious to you. It is not as easy to break. It is now very precious to you. You are both more deeply invested in the external unity, the mission and the purpose of the blessing, and emotionally and spiritually attached to the success of that. So here in the fourth stage of unity we are now finding those elements.
You realize that it is not all about your mission, and your purpose anymore. True happiness in the marriage taught you that peace and happiness comes in now living for the other. This is the stage where you can really understand that, not just in intellect; you can really start to embody that. This extends in your marriage not only about you both, but now it is about raising children. It is about the mission of raising good children, or the mission about serving your parent, or the mission of being a good example as a blessed couple to the community. It is the common mission and purpose that exists at the fourth stage.
Now many people don’t progress beyond this stage. Many blessed families have good marriages, but they stop at this stage of life. This is still a very good accomplishment, but this is only the fourth stage. In a principled perspective, when Adam and Eve reached maturity, they were able to receive the blessing, and then within the spousal relationship with give and receive action; then God’s love could be manifested. This is the start of the Kingdom of Heaven. From this love comes the manifestation of the family and the nation, the cosmos, etc.
At the fifth stage, we enter at the stage of INTIMACY or INTERNAL ONENESS, which is a nicer translation. It is here our purposes and life direction have become united, not the small things, but the big things. The purpose of life becomes united; now you share this fundamental purpose-to fall in love again with your spouse. This is the stage of internal oneness. You have the chance to fall in love with your spouse again, to find a deeper level of all levels physically, mentally and spiritually. You can see that both of you have grown, not only more accommodating to each other, but that your purpose of life has become united. But further than that, you start to develop an admiration for the other, a great respect for the other, a profound trust for the other and the freedom arises in this internal form of oneness. You feel intimately connected as a blessed couple. Your sense of creating an intimate marriage as a example for others, becomes a practice, becoming more deeply and more intimate. Whereas in the previous stage, of external oneness, this is being an example as a united purpose or mission, in the internal stage of oneness; this is a practice that brings us closer to God, and closer to each other than you have ever been. Give it up for God and True Parents.
But that’s only the fifth stage.
The sixth stage is the stage of SURRENDER. Here, you no longer worry about your future, or your spouse’s at a fundamental level. Your intimacy, your internal oneness has grown to such a profound level. Now, you don’t care [about] the previous level. You’re like a train on the tracks, the tracks on the rail road. You’re moving in parallel, in the same direction. You can move happily, joyfully, playfully on this rail road. Now at the stage of surrender, you don’t care where the train is going; you don’t care where it will lead. If it is with her, if it is with my wife, I am going! You surrender, your life is no longer yours; you surrender your life. Now it is in God’s hands. This marriage is no longer mine. It is God’s. You surrender it up. Now you always give the benefit of the doubt to your spouse. You surrender to the power of God that flows through them. Your love is so strong here, that you can easily surrender your desires to bring joy to your spouse.
At the earlier levels, sacrificing your desires, accommodating to your spouse, was somehow difficult, you were complaining about it internally. You were grumbling about it. At the stage of surrender, sacrificing your desires for your spouse is easy! No problem! It is a joy! You can begin to feel the entire cosmos in your spouse; you can feel the sense of unworthiness to be with such a person. And the product of this is that you feel profound gratitude towards God and True Parents for being able to bring you together with your spouse. Let’s give it up for our spouse! Praise God! Let’s give it up for God and True Parents that bring us together with our spouse. Then that’s only the sixth level.
We’re entering now in the seventh level of TRANSCENDENCE that True Parents were talking about during hoondokhae that we just read; the transcendental love. At this stage, we are in transcendental oneness, completely inseparable; you’re no longer two entities with the same purpose, you’re now one inseparable foundation of love, investment, effort, overcoming victories, etc. At this stage, you can feel the entire presence of the entire value of the cosmos. Even you can feel the presence of God in your spouse. You can see the cosmos in her eyes; you can feel the whole world in her voice, feel eternity in your destinies together. You’re completely one, inseparable at this stage. You feel constant gratitude for being together.
And at this stage, you no longer feel fear or dread of being separated by time, space or death. You transcend time and space and even death. No longer do you fear being separated even by death. No matter where you are, you’re always with each other, transcending time and space through this power of love. You now can sense each other so profoundly that every moment together is an experience with God’s love and grace and glory, and there are no blockages that can break your spouse or give and receive action at this stage. Your marriage transcends all. You exist for the sake of the other, and the other is YOU! You not only exist for the sake of the other, now, at this level, the other is YOU! You are totally transcendentally one. I want to give it up to my wife, my love! Praise God! I don’t know if we reached this level yet, we’re training though.
God can dwell here now. Each day is the Kingdom of Heaven. God dwells here, gives and receives in profound joy with you and your spouse. Peace, freedom, unification and happiness are already here. Anyone who comes near your couple, or even sees your couple, can not only see a good example of a good relationship, but could feel the divine love of God flowing from your spouse over the relationship. You experience the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth, at the spousal level, and this is the start of the Kingdom of Heaven where your family, nation, world is in God. You can feel completely free to love without reservation, hesitation. You’re in complete peace, no conflict to destroy this oneness now. You’re in complete unification; you’re not only the happiest spouses, but now you return divine joy to God and True Parents as a blessed family member.
Your blessing does not only impact your life and the life of others, it impacts almighty God, and it impacts True Parents with profound joy and happiness. This is a Kingdom of God where you can exist as husband and wife for eternity. As True father explains, it is absolute, unique, eternal and unchanging and now God, not only dwells with your couple, He is filled with the give and receive action of your True Love. It is not only Heaven for your couple, it is Heaven for God. That is a wonder of the Kingdom of Heaven.
In conclusion, this is the power of the Blessing. We have the opportunity to move throughout all these incredible stages of experiencing God’s love. When we center our marriage on God’s purpose, we can set out on the right direction and eventually experience all these levels of love. At times, we’ll find ourselves moving up and down, and jumping between levels, but you need really to master the level you’re at. You have to train, you have to practice. It doesn’t come by wishful thinking. It comes by investing and training. When we hear and see this, many of you will be asking: “What level am I at?” Some will say:” I’ve been married for 30 years, I’m still at level 2!” But the point here is that you keep training; the training is really important.
We’re training our mind and body all the time. But now we’re training with our spouse, so we do the training together, we engage in the 8 day prayers, we can do the 8 day prayers together per day. We can join in the morning prayers, we can go witnessing together with our spouse. We found incredible spouses that found tremendous level of love practicing together. Help the community more, serve God more. In that realm, as long as we keep training, we keep being grateful, not only as an individual, but as a spouse; in training, keep positive and living for others. God will bless you and you do bless others in ways that you cannot imagine. Give it up for almighty God and for our central blessed families! So this is where we’re going.
Brothers and sisters, it’s very important to remember that True Parents desire is for us to create this kind of Kingdom of Heaven in our spousal training. But as we remember, as we have one more week to the 10.10 Blessing, as we prepare for that, as many of you prepare for that, remember the value of the Blessing and the profoundness of the spousal relationship. It is just, as Father said in the HDH in the CSG, the start of the Kingdom of Heaven. Let’s end with our True Parents final words. This is very amazing. This is from the collection of speeches from 96th volume, let’s read this together:
What is the Kingdom of Heaven as a couple? It is the state of matrimony where a man and a woman are totally united as one. A Heavenly couple is inseparable; they could lose their legs by exploding dynamite but still keep embracing with their upper bodies! Amazing! That is possible only with True Love. Then you can attain the Kingdom of Heaven as a couple.
Let’s all stand and return our beautiful prayers and love to True Parents and God, let’s raise our hands as we pray:
Dearest most beloved Heavenly Father, dearest True Parents of Heaven and Earth. Father we thank You for this day. Father we want You to receive all the glory, we want You to receive all the success we have. We have our existence because of You. Father, as Jesus spoke in Matthew 23, the greatest commandment is to love You, with all our heart, all our mind, all our soul and our strength. Father, let us be the kind of people that can train, that can cultivate our love in profound ways towards You. Father we pray that You can receive all the glory this day for You are the root of love, the root of compassion, the root of goodness, the root of peace.
We want to praise You; we want to praise True Parents, who have walked the path of crosses, who have gone the path of hell. True Parents saved their children with parental love. This love has given us the resurrection, the eternal life that we have prepared for, as we move towards our Seung Hwa ascension ceremony. Father, we thank You and thank True Parents for the life they have lived, and we are offering our thanks and glory today. Father, we pray for all the Spirit World that is being mobilized, all the great Saints and Sages of the past, our four Great Sages who are returning in resurrection, and for the entire world to be united. Father, we pray for the nations, especially for the nation of Korea, to have North and South unification. As Unificationists, we pray for this Fatherland to be united, we pray for all the communities and the tribes, and also for all the families of this world; that we may be families that become the Kingdom of Heaven for You. Thank you Father for all that You have done, and as we prepare for next week, for attending True Parents at the Cosmic Blessing Ceremony, let’s reflect back into our spousal relationship, our spousal True Love. If we’re just at the first or second level, let us make the determination to move and to progress forward. Father, we’ve been stagnating and hurting each other; Let us forgive as You forgive us and then let us move forward again. Father, we thank You so much and we pray that You may receive this small offering of prayer and lifting up Your name. We thank You so much in our own names, we want to thank You for the incredible chance to be Blessed. We pray all these things in our names, the blessed central families, before You and True Parents. Aju.