The Best Things: A Big And Beautiful Mind
Sun Myung Moon
January 4, 1981
What is the best thing? Man keeps asking that question, and we could make an endless list of answers that would fit various situations. For a factory worker, the best thing may be a hammer. If you are going to bore holes, the best thing is a drill. On a cold day like today, woolens are the best thing. When you are starving, food is the best thing — even food that you do not ordinarily like very much. Maybe you usually eat sweet foods, but when you get sick the medicine you need is usually bitter. All these examples show that at some time any given item can be the best thing.
All these items that we have cited are best in relation to a person; in other words, when they meet a need they are the best thing. They are good in an external way. Even such a treasured experience as love is relative in that it requires two people. For the internal self, however, what is the best thing? What is the best possession that you as an individual have? Is it your eyes, nose, mouth — or perhaps something invisible?
People tend to regard their best thing as something they can see externally. Imagine a husband who brings his wife some beautiful gift every day, even a diamond ring. His wife may thank him a thousand times, but still if he does not offer his mind along with the present, she does not feel the value of the gift.
You have life, love, personality or character, which you cannot see, although they are very real. You can, however, see an expression of love or feel vitality coming to you. Love, life, ideals, thoughts, conscience and mind are invisible aspects of us which we may find to be more valuable than objects we can see.
What is external cannot be altered, but what is inside can be changed at your will. Your mind can be big as an ocean, but it can also be so narrow that nothing can pass through freely; a person with such a limited mind cannot be called good.
Your mind can be so big that no matter how much you toss and turn in your sleep, you would never be able to touch the far boundaries of that world. But at the same time, the mind can be so small that an ant walking through would become a major irritation.
Your mind can be big enough for a car to drive through, with room to spare. Some minds are wide enough for only one or two people to fit inside, but others could contain a car moving at the speed of 100 miles per hour.
If you have a big mind, it can contain many things: fine clothing or rags, nice things or ugly things. Regardless of its nature, everything can be comfortable in a big mind.
Not all big things are good. So what is so good about having a big mind? When we say the mind is big, we mean it has a capacity for tolerating things it dislikes until the situation changes. Such a mind tries to be generous and understanding about things that are foolish or even bad, and attempts to transform them into something good.
Nowhere in religion is it specifically taught that you must have a broad mind. Jesus, for instance, never taught that one must always broaden his mind. Nevertheless, religion does admonish us to be meek, humble and sacrificial. In pragmatic terms, if one is meek and humble and sacrificial, his mind will expand.
God would like to live in some person’s mind. Would He prefer to visit the mind which is small and dirty, or one which is big and beautiful? Religious teaching directs a person in a way that will develop a big, beautiful mind.
God’s dwelling should be the best palace, but there is no one with the kind of mind suitable for Him to live in: no one yearns for the kind of mind to which God can be invited.
When millions of people come against me, how can I tolerate it and embrace them all in my mind? If I were a woman, after just a fraction of that opposition, I would be unable to endure it! Did Jesus really know what he was talking about when he told us to love our enemy? Whoever is able to do that truly has a big and beautiful mind.
If I were to enter one of your minds, would I choose a big mind or a small one? No one’s mind is big enough, so I have to expand them all by getting inside and kicking around. I have to be careful not to rupture things, however!
Many times I have told you to persevere and sacrifice, because I would like very much to see the kind of person you would become by doing that, but there is no opening in your minds for me to enter. Perhaps I could crawl inside and then afterwards be unable to get out! I am looking for such a mind, simply so that you and I can live together.
Looking back over my life, I can see why God sent me into situations such as prisons which were very difficult to tolerate and allowed me to be hated and persecuted. I know it was so that my mind would broaden. When God sets foot in a mind so small that His foot gets stuck. He kicks around with His other leg to make the opening bigger. That is how God enters your small mind. But even your small mind can expand without limit.
If a woman’s normally small womb can expand enough to accommodate even a ten-pound baby — plus all the amniotic fluid and placenta — and then contract again after birth, how much more can the mind expand? Has there ever been a woman whose womb would not expand and allow her to have a baby? If the womb does not expand, the baby will die, because it cannot grow. The womb never thinks about whether it will expand. When God’s seed is implanted in your mind and you let it grow, like a baby in the womb, it becomes as big as God Himself.
Before God sends His seed, He knows what kind of environment your mind is. If He knows that a person’s mind will not expand, He will not plant the seed in the first place.
How big, then, is your mind, and how long will it continue growing? If your mind is very specific and limited in its likes and dislikes, God would not like to penetrate it. This is not just a concept, but a very religious outlook and an explanation of something invisible.
Even when a man with a big mind tells God not to come to him, God would insist on paying a visit anyway. If you warn God that you will post a sentry to prevent Him from coming in, God will sneak in while you are asleep. Then when you wake up, you will find a note left behind in the form of a dream or revelation.
When I push you hard and you go out to fundraise and witness, you do not know how you are growing. But the person who puts forth much effort will change greatly over the course of ten years, and people who know him will be amazed. In the past, you might have reacted negatively to anything your parents told you and liked to argue with your brothers and sisters, but after ten years you will be totally different. No matter what they say to you, you can accept it. Brainwashing is the only explanation people can invent for this phenomenon.
Certainly, we have expanded our minds to be able to handle any situation. For instance, a white girl who is persecuted by white people will go later to Africa and be persecuted by Africans. If someone feels he has gone through everything in both white America and black Africa, God would like to check him out to find out what his mind is like.
You usually remember the person who has done the best for you and the one who has done the worst. I only pound on you, instead of giving praise. When I pound on a person so hard he feels he cannot take any more, I appear in his dreams and make a tour to see how he has grown.
Yesterday, the leaders of the Japanese church visited me and I spoke with them for many hours. They work incredibly hard, but I did not praise them. I scolded them instead and said they must do twice as much. They were not hurt, but understood that is the way we ought to go.
No other Japanese members could have received such a direction from me, only our older staff members. They take it in, understand it and try to be thankful. They can remain when others would run away, simply because their minds have become big, even without their realizing it. What’s more, I am ornamenting their already big minds with other jewels, by telling them to love others.
You may respond, “Father, I really take all this very seriously, but why did you not tell me this ten years ago? I could have grown so much faster.” But then the door of your mind was not open. Even now, can you receive what I am saying?
From 1981 on, we have to attain the best thing in the world. You might say that we have exhausted ourselves, so the best thing would be a long sleep! I would like that too.
Regardless of the kinds of friends and relatives you may have, they will treasure your mind more highly if it is big and beautiful. When you see a person whom you dislike sound asleep, how beautiful it is to stoop and cover him to make sure he will not be cold! Don’t you want to have that kind of mind?
Because I gave you instructions, you have passed through and overcome unbearable situations. Some of you white women, for instance, will marry black men; in fact, in one way or another, all of you do incredible things. My whole purpose is to broaden your minds so God can come in. Your minds have become bigger.
When your nation sends you to the frontline, it is expecting you to become a patriot. A patriot is born only on the frontline, not in the non-combat areas. The mind of a patriot can encompass a country; the mind of a saint can embrace the whole world. You may think you are ordinary people, but I am determined to make you better than the saints, and even better than Jesus. To do that you have to stretch yourself to the maximum, and even that is not enough.
Just think of all the years you spent obtaining your education, and look where you end up! Now you sell flowers on the street, and even when people buy from you they give you a hard time. Here you receive only difficulty! I know the hardship you go through. How wonderful it is to persuade a Harvard-educated person to sell flowers. A small flower is a lighthouse beacon, signaling to all mankind.
Recently I sent Col. Pak to South America. When he came back to report to me, I was at Morning Garden, sitting on the ground, mending nets. Col. Pak said it was a great insight to see how one person could embrace both the highest and lowest extremes in life. Because I have a big mind, it makes no difference to me where I may be, whether in a high position or low one.
I can be aware of the most minute things, yet can tolerate great difficulty, almost as though I had no nerves at all. I can stretch to both extremes. I still remember the name of one Japanese detective who was pounding on me, many years ago, and I was almost ready to retaliate, even though it might have cost me my life. But then I thought of how Jesus said to love our enemies, so I tried it to see if I could overcome that situation. Without knowing that principle, I could never have been victorious.
I have often dined at McDonald’s and have eaten New York pretzels. No one thinks it could really be Reverend Moon eating at McDonald’s; they think I just look like Reverend Moon. How fantastic it is for you to be doing menial things for the public good! That is why I have never felt ashamed — even when I was handcuffed and on my way to prison. I knew that by going through that course, I could later ignite the minds of many people and teach them historical lessons, so what was there to be ashamed of?
Whatever I do looks natural. After the entertainment on God’s Day, you saw how I got up on the stage and danced. I was not planning to show you dancing, but I just felt like dancing.
I am very particular. Even though you may feel bad when I point out your errors, I want to raise the standard in even the smallest thing. Still, at East Garden, I do not often point out such things, even though the staff makes mistakes like breaking things in the kitchen. (Americans think a broken dish can just be replaced, but it is not that simple; such an incident must be recognized as a mistake.)
Big and beautiful things attract people. Even the Germans and British want to visit the Louvre in France, because it is such a big and beautiful place. Furthermore, those who really oppose me want to see me. If the mind is big and beautiful, everyone would like to see it, whether they be your enemies or your friends.
I say this so that you can broaden your mind. You must make your mind grow to be so big that it can surround your body and encompass all people on earth, including the spirit world. How could a person be better than that?
Religious people have understood meekness and humility only in a conceptual way, but for us it is very realistic — or we want to make it real. For instance, would you rather have me send you fundraising here in America, or in Africa, where it would be much harder?
Two nights ago we held an international Yute match, and an African team was one of the finalists. One white brother was cheering them on, chanting “Africa, Africa,” for five hours. Later, his voice was gone and he could no longer speak, but still he was chanting, “Africa, Africa.” I felt that perhaps he loved Africans more than I did. If you go to work in Africa when the world is focused on that continent, how much more real will be the love you express! Your prize for that victory would include God, the spirit world and all mankind. Everything would be included in the reward.
Don’t think I picked today’s topic at random. I feel that 1981 will be our best year, and since this is the first Sunday in 1981, I wanted to give you the best talk of all. By giving you these words, I feel that all of you can try to be beautiful for the rest of the year and forever.
My conclusion is that suffering broadens one’s mind, and loving others embellishes the mind with jewels. Now you know the deep reason why I never leave you alone but keep on pushing you out to make you suffer and sacrifice — my goal is to make your minds big and beautiful. What better present could I offer you on the first Sunday of 1981?
The best thing, then, is a big and beautiful mind. You must consider what to do in order to have one. From now on, if you are sitting comfortably and doing nothing, you must realize that your mind is getting narrower. If you hate someone, remember that by doing so, your mind is becoming ugly.
If you are to have a broader and broader mind, you must seek persecution and suffering. I came to America from the other extreme of the world in order to broaden my mind, and as a result I feel that everyone wants to come to rest and live in me. To make my mind beautiful as well as big, I have resolved to love the people of this country. I will be proud, not of what I have made or accomplished, but of how I have broadened my mind. I will not stop and rest; I still have further to go, because there are more people to reach out to and embrace. Will you join me in doing this?