REV. SUN MYUNG MOON: HIS DAILY LIFE
A Life of Teaching by Example
A Life of Teaching by Example
His daily activites are entirely public. He and Mrs. Moon begin every day with a 5 am public prayer service. Afterwards, he commonly speaks two or three hours to the gathering of members or leaders. A public breakfast follows with a table full lof leaders who give him reports about activities around the world. The rest of the day is spent meeting with world leaders, visiting projects and giving more inspiration.
In the evening, weary followers leave meetings with him well after midnight. Rather than going up to his room right away to get a rest, he is often observed with his wife staying in the lecture hall deep in prayer for those who just left. His bedtime is sometime past 2 am, but at times he does not sleep at all, speaking and guiding followers the whole night through or praying the night through over some serious situation.
Everyday he gives guidance to members, visitors and leadership usually for several hours at a time. His record for length of a sermon is 16 hours. Reverend Moon's sermons and speeches are given spontaneously without notes. They come to him after his daily hours of prayer received in inspiration from God. There are now more than 400 published volumes of his sermons and speeches. There are 12 volumes of his prayers. Yet, incredibly each speech is unique. No religious leader has a record of as many speeches, sermons and prayers as Reverend Moon.
Another unusual thing about Reverend Moon are his prayers-they are tearful prayers focused on comforting God. For those who observe him closely, it is clear that the absolute center of Reverend Moon's life is a profound, heartfelt relationship with God. His tearful prayers are both public and heard from his room in the early morning hours and late at night.
Reverend Moon takes no personal time, no vacations, no breaks--and it has been that way for the more than 50 years of his public life. His life is lived entirely for others: his daily schedule seems beyond any human capacity.
When asked how he can live like this, Reverend Moon has commented that it is because he is thinking as a parent of the thousands of persons who are dying every day without knowing God. The central concern of Reverend Moon's life is love and concern for the suffering of God and humanity. It is his love for God and others that enables him to keep up such a sacrificial lifestyle day in and day out for the more than 70 years since he responded to the call of Jesus as a youth on a Korean mountainside.
About Reverend Moon's daily life, these are the words of one of his earliest followers, the Rev. Chung Hwan Kwak:
In teaching us, he would speak from one dawn to the next without stopping to rest. With ever benevolent warmth and engaging geniality, often with words so profound that one would not exchange even for the world, at times persevering through stifling heat with sweat pouring down his body and soaking his clothes, his face drenched in tears as he strove to share the precious gems of truth won by dint of grim struggle to the point of shedding blood, sometimes with raised voice and at other times pausing meaningfully, he fully reflects the all-encompassing dynamism of God, the origin of all existence.
An important part of his daily life is his prayers. His objective in prayer is not to ask for help but rather to comfort God who as our Parent is suffering over mankinds tragic circumstances. He prays before gatherings, often with tears streaming down his face.
While it would be foolhardy to attempt to characterize Reverend Moon's life in an aphorism, I would venture to testify that he has taught us by the power of his own example of living a life entirely for the sake of the liberation of God and the salvation of humankind.
Throughout his life, Reverend Moon has been single-mindedly walking the path of untiring devotion to God. As God's representative, he has experienced God's pain and sorrow with all his heart and with all his strength, exerting his utmost to plant love with a heavenly heart amid a sinful world, forsaking all personal and familial concerns.
This can be best exemplified in one of his prayers:
Heavenly Father, we long for the day when we can live together with You. Please let us become sons and daughters who long for You, and run towards You, and who can bring all the things of creation into harmony by offering greetings of joy and gratitude to You, having arrived at the day of glory when we can live together with You.
Since our minds and bodies were created resembling the external form of our Father, we earnestly hope and desire, Father, that You will allow us to become sons and daughters who resemble You completely.
Humankind does not know that Your sorrowful mind has permeated the earth, and does not know that the footprints of human history are soaked with the lonely tears of heaven.
We have not known that the endless lamentations of heaven are encircling our minds and bodies. Now we cannot help but admit that we are the descendants of rebellious humankind and that we cannot establish our dignity before heaven or be trusted by heaven.
There is no one on earth who can stop Your tears, and there is no one to hold and comfort You in Your sorrow, and there is no one to guard the path You are going. Therefore, if there is grief on this earth, that grief is heaven's grief which has permeated the earth; if there is sorrow, that sorrow is heaven's sorrow which has permeated the earth, and if there is enmity, that enmity is heaven's enmity which has permeated the earth. Therefore, humankind who are living on this earth are facing a destiny of not being able to help but be sacrifices of sorrow whether they want to be or not, and are facing a destiny of not being able to help but overcome their grief-filled selves whether they want to do so or not.
(Reverend Sun Myung Moon: Prayers: A Lifetime of Conversation with Our Heavenly Father; "Please Let Us Be Close to the Wellspring of Your Heart." 24 May 1959)
Another longtime follower writes:
"In teaching us, he would speak from one dawn to the next without stopping to rest. With ever benevolent warmth and engaging geniality, often with words so profound that one would not exchange even for the world, at times persevering through stifling heat with sweat pouring down his body and soaking his clothes, his face drenched in tears as he strove to share the precious gems of truth won by dint of grim struggle to the point of shedding blood--sometimes with raised voice, at other times pausing meaningfully--he fully reflects the all-encompassing dynamism of God, the origin of all existence."