1. A Korean perspective on Moon and his ‘Fall of Man’ teaching
Bibliography of his book, Rev. Sun Myung Moon
by Chong-sun Kim
2. The Korean background of the Unification Church
by Rev. Young-Bok Chun
Secretary of the Evangelical Department of the General Assembly of the Korean Christian Church in Japan.
A Korean perspective on Moon and his ‘Fall of Man’ teaching
by Chong-sun Kim
The Divine Principle interprets the story of eating forbidden fruit from the Tree of Knowledge as an allegory representing Adam and Eve’s immoral and unlawful sexual relations. According to Moon, the fallen Archangel in the body of the serpent tempted Eve to adultery, and she in turn, tempted Adam. From this union of Adam and Eve, Moon pronounces their descendants (mankind) the children of Satan and the bearers of bad serpent blood.
The next step in this clever syllogism is the notion that all people have been subjected to Satan’s dominion and have become Satan-centered and Satan-centered parents of Satan-centered children. Since that era of 6000 years ago, God has been working to restore innocence. His will, however, has been delayed and is not yet fulfilled because of man’s rebellion against him. To save mankind and restore innocence, the Lord of the Second Advent will come in the status of the True Parent of man. In the Divine Principle, Moon states that “Man fell both spiritually and physically; so he must liquidate even the original sin through ‘physical rebirth.‘ Therefore, Christ must come again to accomplish man’s physical salvation by being born on earth.” Moon elaborates this point by stating as follows:
“… however devout a Christian may be, since he has not been able to liquidate original sin coming down through the flesh, no difference is found between him and the saints of the Old Testament Age in light of their both not having been able to remove themselves from the lineage of Satan. … Therefore, the Lord of the Second Advent must come to restore the whole of mankind to be children of God’s direct lineage. Consequently, he must be born on earth, in flesh, as Jesus was.” (Divine Principle)
The Second Advent, therefore, will be of “pure blood” and able to overcome Satan and will thereby establish the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. Sun Myung Moon testifies to having received a revelation from God at the age of 16, and that with his “pure blood” he will now save the world as the True Father of man. Moon practiced “blood-sharing,” defining himself as the pure Messiah figure who can rescue people from their false parents. The concept of passing on qualities through the blood would have meaning in Korea, where the caste system was based on the notion of “royal blood.” It is not too difficult to see how a man who wished to be a divine power might emulate the actual tradition of the ancient Korean kings and aristocrats. Most of the Korean “blood-sharer” messiahs came from humble origins and suffered considerable personal hardships in early life. The notion of being a sinless man who can pass his purity on to others and thereby save the world must surely have appealed to Sun Myung Moon in his twenties.
Apart from providing themselves with a religious alibi for illicit fornication, Moon and his associates, as mentioned earlier, had actually resurrected an old fertility ritual in the guise of a Christian ceremony. The popularity of “blood sharing” among Moon’s cult in the late nineteen-forties suggests that traditional patterns do persist, though deeply imbedded in the minds of people, especially when a new religion that does not provide outlets for old customs is adopted. Korea’s Protestant churches were originally formed in the 19th century by missionaries from the western evangelical Protestant tradition, who are world-famous for their intense puritanism and rigidity concerning sexual affairs, and they surely disapproved of the traditional fertility rites that accompanied shamanistic beliefs. Although Catholicism does offer fertility figures, such as St. Priapus, that can provide a symbol to link believers with their pagan past, Protestant services are notably lacking in modes of expression for the sensual aspect of experience. In an agrarian culture like Korea, sex would normally be associated with fertility, and Christian puritanism would be a unyielding strait-jacket for robust followers with hardy sexual appetites.
Publicly, however, Moon asserts that “adultery was the cause of the downfall of numerous nations, national heroes and patriots.” Only Moon the Messiah can prevent mankind from committing adultery. What Moon is actually saying is that only Moon, masked as the Second Advent is able to practice adultery and call it something else. Although Korean males are in no way averse to using giseng (equivalent to Japanese geisha) girls as sex partners, sex acts with respectable women or married women are frowned upon. As a non-conformist shaman type, Moon appears not to have been able to control his promiscuity. When he became a Messiah figure, he made a religion out of his own impulses and incurred the disapproval of the community. Moon’s blood-sharing ceremonies were performed with well-to-do married women and college girls.
Sun Myung Moon: speech given on October 13th 1970 in Seoul, Korea
“Change of Blood Lineage: The Real Experience of Salvation by the Messiah”
“The realm of total perfection cannot be achieved without a condition for restoring fallen Eve. The Holy Spirit and Jesus must give rebirth centering upon original love. In order for Jesus to be born, God in His providence prepared a certain historical foundation of heart. That providence must involve the womb of a woman.”
Sun Myung Moon: speech given on January 3, 2000 in New York, USA
True God’s Day 2000 Leaders Conference
“All women of the world belong to the True Adam. Where is your wife? They are willing to be faithful to me; that’s why I gave them to you men. They are originally loyal to me, not to you. Adam did not take responsibility for fallen Eve, so I took care of them. That is indemnity.”
from: Rev. Sun Myung Moon by Chong-sun Kim (1978)
Washington, D.C.: University Press of America, Inc.
LINK to Chong-sun Kim’s book
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The Korean background of the Unification Church
by Rev. Young-Bok Chun
Secretary of the Evangelical Department of the General Assembly of the Korean Christian Church in Japan.
first published in the mid 1970s
Let me first clarify my own standpoint in the present discussion about the Unification Church. Last year several Korean church leaders issued a statement which clearly denounced the Unification Church as a non-Christian movement. Later the National Christian Council of Japan also presented its view on the movement, but it merely pointed out which parts of The Divine Principle differed from its own understanding of Christianity, and abstained from claiming that the movement was not Christian. I myself find this vague attitude somewhat unreasonable and basically agree with the Korean church leaders: The Unification Church should not be characterized as a Christian sect.
One has to admit that the Bible is an important part of its teaching; but Islam also recognizes and quotes the Bible and regards Moses and Jesus as great prophets. However, no one would claim that Islam is Christianity. Several of the new religions of Japan stress that their teaching is basically in harmony with Christianity, and often refer to the Bible, but none of them want to call their teaching Christian. The Unification Church claims that it is a Christian church founded on the Bible, but the Bible is interpreted through its holy scripture, The Divine Principle, which is the real basis of its teaching. I have had quite a lot of contact with members and leaders of the Unification Church, but the more I inquire and study their scriptures, the more I am convinced that it is quite unreasonable to call it a Christian sect.
Seen against the background of its origin and development in Korea, it is more correct to call it Moon-ism than Christianity. For it is a movement based on the founder, the Reverend Sun Myung Moon himself. In order to understand the Unification Church, one needs to see it in the light of the general Korean religious background and specific developments in some Christian sects. I will briefly indicate four points: the yin-yang philosophy, the prophetic scripture called Cheong Kam Nok, the ecstatic movements which advocated the “restoration of Eden,” and finally some sects which practised sexual rites as part of the establishment of the coming kingdom of God.
1. It is natural to point out the yin-yang philosophy as an important background for Moon’s thinking. In many popular forms this idea has penetrated the religious life of Korea. Even the Korean national flag has the traditional symbol of the “Great Origin,” which expresses the dual nature of the universe. The influence of this yin-yang philosophy is so obvious in Moon’s teaching that it is sufficient just to mention it here. The basic idea of the dual nature of God and the harmonious unification of male and female forces, man and woman included, reflects nothing but traditional yin-yang philosophy.
2. Another important factor which has influenced the Unification Church and several other new religious movements in Korea is the old scripture called Cheong Kam Nok 鄭鑑録 It conveys both an indigenous form of the yin-yang philosophy, and also a sort of Messianic idea. It is a prophetic scripture and describes the apocalyptic catastrophies in a manner similar to the Biblical Apocalypse. In the Cheong Kam Nok there is a prophecy that in the end period “the true man” will appear from the “Southern Ocean,” which is nothing but Korea itself. Moon’s understanding of himself is linked to this tradition. In his teaching there is a strong conviction that he himself is the elected prophet.
3. The idea of the “return to Eden” is another dominant factor in Moon’s thinking. This is not developed by Moon himself, but was one of the central ideas in several Christian movements in the 1920’s and 1930’s.
It is said that Moon was 16 years old when he received the revelation that he was the prophet raised up by God. At that time (1936) there were several ecstatic and messianic movements in Korea, and especially a Methodist pastor called Young Do Lee seems to have influenced Moon. I often went to these meetings when I was young. The pastor was an enthusiastic and eloquent preacher and advocated a peculiar interpretation of the Bible. During the meetings he used to roll up a newspaper and go around saying, “Satan, get out! Satan, get out!” while the congregation was praying in a state of ecstatic shaking.
This movement advocated the so-called “restoration of the original state” before the fall of Adam and Eve. The congregation was dancing around and crying for the return of Eden. And when the pastor cried, “Adam and Eve were naked before the fall! Take off your clothes!” the men turned to the women and stripped off their clothes, and they danced around naked.
▲ Mr. Yong-do Lee 李龍道 born April 6, 1901 and died October 1933.
His doctor had predicted that Mr. Lee would die of tuberculosis within a short time, but he continued his evangelistic work for more than ten years and had a considerable impact on the churches in Korea. Moon came to [his church] in 1936 and was deeply influenced by him and other charismatic leaders. The movement was suppressed and the leaders were scattered, but Moon, who was a member of the group, brought with him the idea of the return to Eden.
▲ The Jesus Church in Myungsudae, Seoul. Sun Myung Moon is standing in the back row in front of the nearest window. He began attending this church soon after moving to Seoul in 1938. This denomination was founded by Yong-do Lee.
4. Finally I have to mention Moon’s relation to some sects in which sexual rites were practised as a means to create a new mankind. At the age of 25 Moon engaged in this movement which practised the so-called “sharing of blood,” pi kareum (in Korean, in Japanese it is chiwake 血分け). These were rites of sexual intercourse between men and women. The idea was that the children who were going to be born through the “mixing of blood” would be without sin. Because of this “violation of social order” Moon was arrested in [Pyongyang in 1946 and again in] 1948 and sentenced to five years of imprisonment. He himself claims that a miracle occurred at that time: all the blood was extracted from his body, but he did not die. He was released during the Korean war in [October 1950, and] arrested again in 1955 for the same reason, but was later released.
When it was discovered that several female members of Korean churches had been to Moon’s center to receive pi kareum, an increasing number of people started to protest against this movement as a heretical religion. However, Moon did not at this time draw so much attention as another much more influential movement called Chun Do Kwan 伝道館, led by a presbyter called Tae-seon Park. This sect had installed separate rooms in the basement of the churches in which men and women had sexual intercourse. These rites drew a large number of people to the movement.
In 1954 Moon’s movement was established as a separate organization called The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity. In a later stage the political and anti-communist aspect of the movement has been more and more emphasized.
In 1958 the movement was introduced in Japan. [On May 27, Sang Ik Choi, aka Papasan Choi, went to Japan.] While the practise of pi kareum has been one of the central problems for the movement in Korea, the Unification Church in Japan seems to be extremely strict in sexual matters and it is difficult to trace any practice of sexual rites. But the idea of bearing children without sin is still central.
In 1960 Moon remarried, and called it “The Wedding of the Lamb.” This year was proclaimed as the beginning of the new age, cheong ki won nyon 天紀元年, “The First Year of the Heavenly Era.” All marriages had hitherto been the results of sinful relations, and in many cases people who were already married had to leave their spouses in order to marry according to Moon’s will. Now marriage between the perfect men and women who were willing to follow Moon’s command would initiate the new holy family and their children would be without sin. The mass-wedding ceremonies of the Unification Church are to be understood in this context.
It is often said that Moon himself has never declared himself as the Messiah. However, in 1968 he proclaimed that he was the Messiah, and later, when Korean pastors questioned whether Moon was regarded as the Messiah or not, a spokesman of the movement said that the one who should answer this question was not himself, but God. He himself, however, was convinced that Moon was raised by God to be the coming Messiah. If God had not recognized him, he said, he would not believe in him either.
Compared to Japanese Christians their Korean brothers have a much stronger sense of the uniqueness of Christ as the sole basis for salvation, and I find it strange that Japanese Christians do not take a much firmer stand against the Unification Church.
The Life of Sun Myung Moon – the Messiah of a Perverted Sex Religion (1991)
by Ryo Hagiwara. page 70
“Sun Myung Moon was first arrested by the security police on August 11, 1946. He was detained for three months at the Daedong police station [in Pyongyang]. The charge was for causing social disorder, for alleged sexual immorality.
On February 22, 1948 Sun Myung Moon was arrested for a second time by the 内務省 Ministry of the Interior [not 内務署 the Interior Department] for his coerced marriage with a housewife, Mrs Kim Chong-hwa. On April 27 he was sentenced to five years in Heungnam prison.”
Yong-do Lee wrote at least one book: The Theory of Love. His diaries have been published in ten volumes.
Yong-do Lee 李龍道 is also known as Yong-do Yi and Yong Do Rhee.
Moon joined the Jesus Church, founded by Mr. Lee, perhaps as early as 1932 together with the rest of his family when they all converted to Christianity at that time. Several sources have reported that Moon’s family never joined the Presbyterian church, but they joined the Jesus Church of Mr. Lee. When Moon moved to Seoul he started to attend the Jesus Church branch in Myungsudae. Moon was married to his first wife by a pastor from the Jesus Church. Moon never stated that he met Mr. Lee in person, but he has made many references to him. There is no record of Moon being connected with the Presbyterian Church besides the fact that it excommunicated him in 1948. LINK
▲ Lee Yong-do is on the right, next to him is Park Seung-geul. Behind them is Lee Ho-bin who Sun Myung Moon asked to officiate at his marriage to Choi Seon-gil.
Gil Ja Sa Eu (the wife of Hyo-won Eu)
When numerous students and several outstanding professors became Unification Church members, they were given an ultimatum: Leave the Unification Church or leave Ewha Womans University. Mrs. Gil Ja Eu wrote:
… fourteen of us were called to the office of the dean of students. The dean told us, ‘The Unification Church is heresy, and they dance around in the nude. You mustn’t go there.’ We answered, ‘We haven’t even danced fully clothed, much less nude. If we wanted to dance, we would go to a dance hall. Why should we go to church to dance?’ But she said, ‘That’s not true. You don’t know because you’re not in very deeply yet. If you keep going, they will make you take your clothes off and dance.’
(from ‘My Testimony’ by Gil Ja Sa Eu, page 27 – an essay in the Unification Theological Seminary Library, Barrytown, New York.)
from Sun Myung Moon’s Life part 8
Moon’s words about Mr. Lee Yong-do:
“Pastor Lee Yong-do (1901-1933) The movement in the west transferred to Mrs. Heo Ho-bin and the movement in the east came under Mr. Lee Yong-do. Baek Nam-ju had been the Adam-figure, but because of Baek’s failure in fulfilling his responsibility, Pastor Lee came onstage. Pastor Lee’s church was somewhat different from Mrs. Lee’s. Originally, they were united. For a while, they cooperated, but then they separated. What did Pastor Lee do? He established the Jesus Church.
Mrs. Heo Ho-bin was director of the Central Theological Seminary. In 1930, Pastor Lee Yong-do appeared in Korea with fire like that of Elijah.
People who listened to him speak felt overwhelmed by Heaven. God’s grace poured out of him like water. Why did heavenly grace flow from him? Just as the people of Israel had to achieve oneness with Judaism in order to oppose Rome, Christianity had to carry Korea in order to drive away Japan and establish Heaven’s authority. That battle remained. God bestowed energetic fire on him in order that he might work out a way for all branches of Korean Christianity to become one. Only if all of Korean Christianity had united would they have completely avoided being compelled to practice Shintoism, Japanese traditional worship. If everyone had been completely united and fought against the Japanese, the Japanese would not have been able to carry out armed aggression. Why? Because those united people would have been in the position to claim Adam’s authority.
Pastor Lee Yong-do’s death
The established churches of the day opposed those who had special missions. Representative among those who opposed them was Kim Rin-see (1894-1964). He opposed Pastor Lee in writing. He stirred the entire nation against him. Heaven sent Lee Yong-do as a messenger in order to unite all Christians, yet Kim Rin-see did such a thing. Of course, many Christian leaders were behind him.
Pastor Lee Yong-do started the Jesus Church in Pyongyang. He died in 1933. Do you know how old he was at that time? He was just thirty-three years old. He lived as long as Jesus did. Without God’s help, it would have been impossible for Pastor Lee, who was so young, to cause such a cyclone in the Christian community in Korea.
There were two kinds of spiritual movements, one internal and the other external. Two churches, the “Inside the Belly” Church and the Jesus Church, both of which had been receiving teachings from Heaven, should have united. Toward that end, the group from the west traveled to meet the group in the east. Nevertheless, they failed to unite, so God had to establish a new movement. He needed pioneers in a new field, which is why God wanted to have another new person who would follow His directions. This person was from the Kim clan. [reference to Baek-moon Kim?]
The women who mourned Lee Yong-do
Here are some interesting facts. When a spiritual person dies, some people pray for the person. Mr. Lee died alone in Wonsan, but at the very moment of his death, God chose women in faraway places and told them to offer special prayers. Rival Christians may have said it was a good thing and danced in joy at this death, but many put on white garments and prayed for him for three days.
You have to understand that because of God’s hidden will in relation to the providence, He did not want to abandon His nation or His people. Thanks to those women who prayed with all their heart behind the scenes, God’s providence could continue through successive generations.
I looked at many people in the spiritual churches, which is why I am well aware of their activities. I also know many things about the work of Mrs. Gil Son-ju and Pastor Lee Yong-do. I clearly understand what kind of mission they had in those days. When the period of their responsibility was over, there had to be someone who could take over the mission.”
“In three stages, women had to prepare the heavenly providence. Why? Because Eve fell first, God had to call women first so they would be aware of how the Lord would come. Three generations had to prepare those providential activities. In those days, there was great confusion. As you know, going from Mrs. Kim Seong-do to Mrs. Heo Ho-bin and on from there, covered three generations. Thus, the course passing through Mrs. Kim Seong-do, Mrs. Heo Ho-bin and Pak Nopa* – the lady who claimed to be the wife of Jehovah – followed the women’s work. Pastors Baek Nam-ju, Lee Yong-do and Kim Baek-moon led the work being done by the men.”
*Pak Nopa is another name for Pak Wol-yong “the wife of Jehovah.” Moon referred to her many times in his Malssum speeches. Choe Joong-Hyun wrote a PhD thesis in 1993: “Sources give us four different given names of this old woman: Unnae (Malssum 33:134). Ullyong (Ok Se-hyun 1984:320-321), Ullo (Chong Deuk-eun 1958:5), and Wolyong (Tahk Myeong-hwan 1979:56). But here we choose to use “Wolyong” which sounds more natural and familiar as a female Korean name than the other three.”
from Sun Myung Moon’s Life part 9
Moon’s words about Kim Baek-moon:
“Kim Baek-moon and the Israel Jesus Church
Kim Baek-moon (1917-1990) was one of the three main successors to Rev. Lee Yong-do. He led an exemplary life of faith. This group had the status of a John the Baptist group. He heard the voice of God telling him to make a religious retreat. He heard the voice of God telling him to prepare for the returning Lord.
Kim Baek-moon and I were in the position of Cain and Abel, respectively; John the Baptist and Jesus. That’s why we hear the name Kim Baek-moon. Some people say that Rev. Moon was Kim Baek-moon’s disciple. What would I gain from that? He was a Christian, and according to his Christology, Jesus was God. He didn’t know the fundamental Principle. However, when it came to being spiritually attuned, he was on the highest level of faith among the Christians of the time. Because Kim Baek-moon was close to Dr. Syngman Rhee, Kim was a John the Baptist figure. God’s will could have been realized at that time. But it didn’t work out.
The Christian Council of Korea
from Overview of Protestant Churches in Korea:
6. Mystic Spirituality (1930 – 1940)
In the 1930s, changes had arisen on the surface in churches, caused by signs of separation in Presbyterian churches and frustration caused by shrine worship, etc. People began to seek different forms of spirituality. Christians’ commitment to social participation turned to mysticism and pessimism.
… Another example is the mysticism led by Lee Yong-Do. The arising of such faith was inevitable for Korean churches in the 1930s. Lee said that no other spirituality could exist except for the desperate love for Christ. In this sense, his faith can be defined as the “mysticism of the suffering Christ.” With his faith, Lee experienced the joy of forgetting worldly things, which led him away from the world. In order to express such an ecstatic sense of unity with God, Lee used sensual words such as bedroom, embrace, kiss, etc. However, he couldn’t forget Christ’s suffering on the cross. So, his faith was always related with lamentation for Christ. The despair and frustration of the Korean people might have reflected on this faith.
Another example is the mystic spirituality led by Baek Nam-Ju. Park Gye-Ju, a writer, once joined him. Baek’s belief is that God and Christ exist in a person, and the person becomes divine. If Lee Yong-Do hadn’t met them, he might not have ended his life so miserably.
Hwang Gook-Joo is another figure. Hwang had made improper remarks that his head was replaced by Jesus. In the darkest period, Korean churches had been in confusion related with cults.
Kuk-ju Hwang (Hwang Gook-Joo) was famous for his ‘orgies’. Researchers into Korean pikareum generally come to the conclusion that he was the man who started this pseudo-Christian sexual intercourse rite in Korea. There is information about Kuk-ju Hwang here:
There is also this reference in Rev Joseph Chang Hyung Yoo’s A Reformed Doctrine of Sanctification for the Korean Context (Ph.D. thesis submitted to the Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria, South Africa.) February 2007. Page 423: “Cf. Dong-Ju Lee, “Why do we call the Unification a Heresy?,” Ministry and Theology no. 70 (April, 1995), p.209. In 1957 Dr Sa-Hun Shin disclosed the lineage of a circle of Pigarm [pikareum]. Moon’s Pigarm was traced to Deuk-Eun Jung [Chong], who was a disciple of Kuk-Ju Hwang. Ibid, p. 208.”