In the past two years, many Unificationists have found themselves very troubled by the extreme divide we find ourselves in culturally and politically in the United States. It can be easily understood that the political spheres are driven by the cultural spheres.
We seem so divided that the two cultures can barely even understand what the other is thinking, saying or doing. It’s almost as if we have two Americas at this point. We have been in similar situations before: the Civil War era; and the 1960s into the 1970s. We always got through it because God was still guiding and protecting America. God willing, that is still the case.
In various conversations with Unificationist elder friends, many younger Unificationists, family, clergy, clients, and in the larger community, it seems that Unificationists feel we do not fit comfortably into the conservative mantle as in the past. Nor do we appear to fit into the liberal sphere of the present.
How does a Unificationist react to the highly charged issues of the day with a Divine Principled response, rather than just one’s own ideas?
For example – what about the gun violence debate? Is a Unificationist position pro-gun or anti-gun? Some gun control or none? Is the Second Amendment sacred under the Divine Principle or is it open to discussion? What about the immigration debate? Would the Divine Principle and True Parents’ teachings tell us to “build the wall” or to show compassion and accept refugees from struggling nations?
How about environmental laws? Do we want the government to control individual and industrial activity so as to curtail environmental impact? Or is decreasing government control more important? Do we decry the rise of the LGBTQ movement or embrace these folks with God’s love as brothers and sisters? These are just a few of the issues a Unificationist encounters on a daily basis.
With conservatives, on the one hand, one might resonate with the principles of self-reliance, free markets, America as a beacon of freedom for all those in the world (including a strong defense to help those in need), love for America and respect for its founding principles, a strong moral code, and so on.
On the other hand, it may have been difficult for some Unificationists to relate to the “America First” idea and the suspicion of all immigrants. Clearly, Unificationism is pointing towards a world culture where a “God First” idea will prevail. From that, an “all of us first” idea might follow.
Many on the right seem to long for the old America of the 1950s, the “Norman Rockwell America.” If we look closely, though, that was a clearly Judeo-Christian America, primarily created by and lived in by European immigrants. What they created was based on European Christian society and ideas from the European Enlightenment. When we consider groups on the right — like Republican conventions and the recent CPAC conference — 98% of the faces appear to be white. Something must be missing here. At the same time, many Unificationists certainly feel alienated by most of the rhetoric from the left.
To others, and those on the left, this is a “white culture.” The right is clearly clueless about how to attract and speak to minorities, recent immigrants and people of minority faiths. But by now, America is much more pluralistic, and we have many Muslims and people of other faiths, plus many races and cultures from all over the world.
Father and Mother Moon are Asian and have suffered from this bias all their lives in America. Remember the important 1981 Foley Square rally outside the federal courthouse in New York when Rev. Moon charged that his indictment was racially motivated? When encountering liberals in 2018 on the other hand, a Unificationist might resonate with many liberal core values. They seem to sincerely respect people of all faiths, persuasions, cultures and races. Take a look at any Democratic convention, or one of the many rallies leftists stage. They are always a “rainbow,” right? They have been successful at speaking to all sorts of folks.
Reverend and Mrs. Moon at a rally of supporters outside the federal courthouse in New York on October 22, 1981.
Indeed, most of those who supported True Father during his legal problems in America were liberal, such as Harvard professor Laurence Tribe, or the many African-American leaders who stepped up, even to this day, to work with us. There were many conservatives, like Senator Orrin Hatch, who resonated with True Father’s Victory Over Communism work and supported it strongly over the years, but the majority who supported True Father during the trial years were liberals.
The liberal ideas of inclusion are important. As well, the many peace conferences initiated by our True Parents appear to lean much more to the left. And recently, True Mother has been speaking strongly about environmentalism, an issue championed by the left and snickered at by the right.
At the same time, the contemporary liberal-left seems to many to politicize everything and appear to be mostly negative and angry. There is not much question that – knowingly or not – their views have been influenced by Marxist/leftist thought. The Marxist “community organizing” principles of Saul Alinsky and others pervade much of their rhetoric and actions. The liberal mindset has seemed to claw away at what our True Parents celebrated in America during the “God Bless America Festival” in 1976. By 2018, largely due to liberal influences and activism, that America is almost gone or at least in severe danger.
So where do we Unificationists find ourselves in 2018? Are we liberal or conservative? Before your mind answers this question with a knee-jerk reaction, catch yourself. Are you sure? You might find that we don’t fit nicely on the right or the left.
So how about “headwing?” Remember that? True Father used to speak about it a lot, but the concept has never been fleshed out into a clear set of ideas, at least as far as this author is aware. This piece is offered to begin discussion, bring up some issues and point out a few core ideas suggested by the term as True Father described it.
Unificationists may have experienced that at many events and with our True Parents, we are able to see liberals and conservatives coexisting, breaking bread, sharing ideas, and, most especially, celebrating each others’ humanity. What is the source of this miracle? It is surely the love of God coming through the ministry and work of our True Parents; the Divine Principle in action. Let us consider how we might go further and put what we see happening in the sphere of True Parents into a set of coherent ideas.
As strange as the term headwing sounds at first, it makes perfect sense and has deep meaning. If there are wings involved in the analogy, we are talking about a bird. On birds, the head is in the center and above both wings. So a headwing ideology would be a centrist idea and above the two extremes of right and left. What would “above” mean? It would be a vertical idea; such an ideology would be guided by spiritual principles – indeed, the Divine Principle. So we’re talking about a Unificationist political philosophy. In the case of this discussion, a Unificationist American political philosophy.
So based on the reflections so far in this discussion, and on indications from the Divine Principle, what might be some core principles of such an ideology?
- A consideration of the divine nature of human beings. This is key. No doubt we will then be written off with the same pen that writes off Islamism, sharia law, etc. But we will have to soldier on because this simply cannot be left out. As CAUSA lectures used to say, “It is a God or no God proposition…” True Parents always boldly proclaim whatever needs to be said.
- A companion consideration is the nature of “fallen human beings.” Thus, there must be some sort of checks and balances, since fallen humans have contradictory natures.
- The idea of the natural family, meaning a father, a mother and children (or at least a husband and wife). This is core Divine Principle and it must be included in any Unificationist system. Indeed, it must be central.
- The “purpose of the individual and the purpose of the whole.” The left wants to sublimate the rights of individuals to support the needs of the whole, which, when corrupted, leads to totalitarianism. The right wants to champion the rights of the individual while many underprivileged citizens may suffer. A new idea will incorporate serving both needs.
- The idea of Providence. God has been guiding human history, and has championed certain cultures and nations. At the present time, Korea, Japan and America still maintain central providential positions.
- A Messianic idea. Ultimately, human beings alone will not be able to solve the world’s problems. We need God’s help to solve America’s and the world’s problems. Man-made solutions will simply not be enough.
- At the same time, the idea of human responsibility must be emphasized. We cannot wait for miracles from Heaven. As True Father said so eloquently in the Washington Monument speech: We can build it, “In God’s Power, but with our own hands…”
One may feel it almost impossible to craft an American headwing political ideology. But shouldn’t we try? Who else has the spiritual power, God’s blessing and the power of the Divine Principle? Only Unificationists. If not we, then who?! Seriously – who else can you think of that could possibly bridge the divide in America right now?
It is not clear if our American movement as it is has the resources or commitment to undertake such a project to clarify what an American headwing ideology might look like. However, we have the brain and heart power, with so many well-trained scholars and many with a lot of political experience. Surely we can create a beginning.♦
Rev. Henri Schauffler (UTS Class of 1985) has been in the Unification Movement for 45 years. He has consulted with college student activity groups, built churches, taught Divine Principle and the Bible to many hundreds, led pilgrimages to Korea, worked with politicians and others in pursuit of headwing-type solutions, run for state legislature, and, in later years, plied the skills, knowledge and wisdom gleaned from these experiences into working with small business owners to help them become more effective, grow their businesses, and lead a more fulfilling life.
Thanks for taking time to think about this subject and for sharing your thoughts. Perhaps you can rally a few like-minded faithful to initiate such an effort. This is not my particular area of interest or expertise, but I do recognize it’s importance. (Recently I’ve been re-reading Bernard Bailyn’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution.) I don’t believe the “American people” remain as polarized as you’ve articulated here, and books such as Sacred America, Sacred World, and The Reunited States of America, demonstrate how much people are “working together” to build consensus and cooperation among disparate views.
The set of seven principles is good. Especially I like the coupling of the last two — the messianic idea and human responsibility.
Thank you so much, Henri!
This is the time (past time?) when Americans who have learned from True Parents must step up and articulate the ideas that have transformed our lives. And we, too, must find that transformation each day. That is the ongoing challenge we all face: Making it real every day in our own lives. Father knew that we all need daily hoon dook hae; he pushed that — and True Mother does, too — very hard. Why? Because everybody needs ongoing education. I hope that our Unification movement can continue to produce bite-sized educational materials for people who want to learn more. And that is really, I think, what you are talking about here.
As I recall Father once saying, his hope for humanity resided in the original mind endowed by God to each person. That would align with your first point above: “A consideration of the divine nature of human beings.” For me, one of the proofs of the messiahship of the True Parents is in their worldwide appeal: white, black, Asian; North American, Latin American, European, African, Japanese, Korean, etc…. As I sat recently in a FFWPU church service, I was reminded of this amazing fact. I haven’t seen that variety in any other religious congregation, certainly not in weekly services.
If I were to add another key point, it would be the reality of the spiritual realm and the need to align the spiritual life with the physical/material life of human beings. Mind-body unity centered on the love of God is everyone’s lifelong pursuit. Large percentages of Americans are abusing drugs, eating too much, and indulging in irresponsible sexual behavior because (I believe) of emptiness within the heart. The reality of spirit and the spirit world are a core component of Unificationism, while most of traditional Christianity spurns discussion of it because of the potential for confusion (I suppose).
And then there is the understanding that our Creator is actually the ultimate Parent of all people, and thus can never be satisfied with the catastrophes of human misbehavior, which plunge large numbers of people into hell — both here on earth and then in the spiritual world. To simply know that Hell itself cannot be eternal because that would mean God conceded part of the creation to evil — that is profound.
Every time I attend a traditional Christian service, I realize that they are “seeing through a glass darkly.” They understand the core truth of Jesus’ love and willingness to sacrifice for all of us, yet they don’t have the teachings they need to understand the reasons for Jesus’ death, resurrection, and statement that he would come again….
I think that above all, Unificationism offers a precious experience of the Heart of God which can appeal to all people, regardless of their cultural and political background. But it needs to be “translated” or expressed more clearly here in the USA. And that has to be done by….you and me. Peace Begins With Me. :-}
Thanks much, Laura. I think there is a difference between the headwing idea and the bigger cultural expression of Unificationism you are mentioning. That is so important! In the early years, the Oakland group, CARP and others were successful in this, but we have dropped a focus on this for over 20 years. Lovin’ Life made some attempts, but alas, that whole thing went down in flames.
Let’s not give up!
Thanks for these reflections. Certainly, cultural values have a major impact on the political system, and one of the most prominent is selfishness or unselfishness. So in the grand scheme of things, culture drives politics. However, one of our main problems with the political system today is that the economic sphere is driving politics due to absence of checks and balances on selfishness. Money drives both the Democratic and Republican parties, even though they give lip service to different values.
In January 2001, TF referred to three core principles:
1. Keep your blood lineage pure;
2. Power. Don’t violate the other people’s rights. You cannot choose only those you like;
3. Public money. Don’t misuse or steal it.
These three principles refer to three social spheres: culture, politics and economics. After the Roman Empire began to develop two social spheres: Church and state, but the economy was not independent; it was controlled by either the state or the church. The freedoms unleashed by the American Revolution allowed an independent economic sector to emerge, which is one of the reasons for the great wealth in the United States. Much of the culture war we witness is between producers of wealth and dependents on wealth, and the Republican and Democratic parties are divided largely along these lines. Divine Principle speaks of the need to prepare all three of these spheres for the Second Coming.
The founders were very wary that corruption would seep into the political system and hijack it. The two political parties have done that in many ways, and many structural reforms are required to prevent the U.S. Treasury from being a place for people to raid, to being a place from which to fund the improvement of social conditions. A couple of simple reforms would go a long way towards eliminating much of today’s political dysfunction:
1. Disestablishment of political parties, like the religions were disestablished;
2. Legislation on single subjects only;
3. If no budget is approved, last year’s budget continues (like a month-to-month lease).
I think these are all points and reinstating many of the founder’s checks and balances as well as adding new ones, when new conflicts of interest have arisen, would go a long way in positive structural reforms. They would not fix the cultural problems that you mention, but I think they are part of a headwing solution.
Thanks very much, Dr. Anderson. I think we will need to clarify what the scope of any headwing proposals might be. Political? Cultural? Economic? Sociological? Herein I am mainly thinking of impacting the political realm, but that may be insufficient.
As from my points above, you can see that I suggested some political policy changes that could be pushed by a headwing movement. The proposals are rooted in human nature, economic principles, and other factors that affect good governance. Entrenched parties, both Republican and Democrat, would fight these changes because they would take power from them and return it to the people.
To improve a social system, of which governance is a part, one needs to understand system functionality. You need to study all of these factors (political, cultural, economic) to develop good governance solutions. I prefer to use the term governance to politics, because while both refer to the legal sphere and the use of force, governance refers to the mechanism for successful operation of something, while politics often refers to the negotiation of self-interested parties, and self-interest doesn’t usually serve the whole but seeks to take from the whole. In fact, it is what has made our system dysfunctional. This is why the Founders tried to put limits on what “politics” could negotiate through checks and balances. They viewed it as protecting people from themselves.
Thank you, Henri. I completely agree that Unificationists should have access to a new political paradigm. The way many of our debates split down traditional left-right lines clearly indicates that we don’t have much to offer in terms of substantive political discussion. This must change!
Thank you very much, Henri.
I remember well one of your Divine Principle lectures around 1980 to which I brought the president of a seminary. He was very impressed with the professionalism both of your lecturing and of the technology that supported it.
To help us seek solutions to the questions that you propose, you might want to share with some of us your experiences working with local politicians towards solutions pointing in the direction of headwing.
Thank you so much, Henri, for initiating this discussion.
To my mind, there is no greater thing for us as American Unificationists to do but to become the ones who stand between the right and the left, reaching out and bringing both sides together. DP and UT offer us a blueprint for creating a headwing position that ultimately can attract both sides.
As an old CARPie, you may be aware that today’s CARP is already engaged in a process to create materials that would feed into a headwing position. Five presentations have been created so far addressing such topics as Worldview, Thought Trends (based on DP’s Period of Preparation for the Second Advent of the Messiah), Love and Sexuality, Education, and Media. In addition to DP and UT, the old CAUSA manual as well as IEF’s PowerPoint presentations have been used as resources to create these new presentations. Our hope is to roll these out on college campuses soon through some of the CARP chapters. To me, today’s college campuses stand in the front line of today’s culture wars.
One of the things that would seem to be central to the concept of headwing, in addition to the seven points you proposed, are the ideas of interdependence, mutual prosperity, and universally-shared values. These are mentioned just briefly in the DP and need to be fleshed out. In them are the seeds for a viable headwing position.
Thank you very much, Rev. Beebe. Is there some way we can all get access to these resources you have worked on in the past and are presently working on?
That will be up to Teresa Rischl, CARP president, to decide. I believe that once they are completed, by mid-April, her plan is to put them up for public consumption on the CARP-USA website.
Excellent. I will stay in touch with Teresa.
Thank you for initiating this dialogue. While an elected person, “headwind” was a guiding sentiment. It didn’t result in what I hoped for (when running for speakership of the Nevada Assembly, my idea of sharing committee chairmanships was rejected by my Republican colleagues. The result being our Caucus ended as divided as North and South Korea, and the next Speaker, I was not. Still, I slept better at night.)
Thank you, Henri, for opening a thoughtful discussion about headwing.
In Father’s “Sermon at Belvedere” in 1986, he briefly defines headwing and says that “the right-wing represents Abel, and the left-wing represents Cain.” Therefore, our position need not treat both sides as the same. Headwing must have a God-centered head, or the bird cannot fly and would appear to be a “headless,” “Godless” and crazy bird. The moral stand must be leading.
In embracing or addressing usual left-wing concerns for environmentalism, immigration, poverty, etc., we need to consider the context of our times. At UTS in the 1980s, we had a dreamy interfaith vision. Almost 40 years later, since the providence has not progressed enough, and Father admonished us a number of times that if it did not, we might see “horrific, and unfathomable events happen…and possibly half of the world’s population annihilated (SMM, East Garden, 2010).” Now, ISIS has shown us the horrific events that we were warned about.
Therefore, “Make America Great Again” has inspired many to see America take the lead in freedom and in God. Both our President and Vice President affirmed God a number of times in the 2018 CPAC as well as “One Nation Under God…with liberty and justice for all.” Both have stood up publicly for pro-life, whereas the left has advocated for abortion, gay and transgender rights, marijuana and sanctuary cities. By the way, 47% of the previous CPAC were from ages 18-25 and there are more people of color coming each year. This conference have given invaluable education and civic engagement for our young people that our own groups have failed to do. The CPAC 2018 conference was the most God-affirming conference that I have ever attended. We spoke with African-American candidates for public office who are inspired and ready to lead their own people. Yes, developing with embracing more people of color, as well as young people, is happening.
Israel, as a nation of religious and chosen people who are under attack has very tight security. So, too, now at this vulnerable time in America, we need strict border control and may need a wall on our border. To judge this as not having compassion, is what I call an abuse of the concept of compassion. America continues to be most compassionate in aid and has already been a nation of immigrants who fled here because we offered more freedom than any other country. Now, however, due to the rise of illegals committing crimes and ISIS and others’ proclamations of plans to destroy America, we need to strengthen and protect America so that we can continue to be a providential nation. Sadly, we are losing the ability to walk free even in our own cities and towns. We have diminished freedom for Christians and religious values. Our founder has often said his own version of a common adage: “Give someone the shirt off your back, but don’t give them your shoes…then you cannot walk.” We need to find new solutions to helping others, sending aide and supporting cultures.
A headwing culture cannot develop without America having the “Great Awakening” Father called for where Christian, Unification churches and Jewish institutions lead with these kind of headwing stands: a moral stand for marriage, parental rights, religious freedom, freedom of speech, pro-life, protection against government overreach and abuse, protection for the environment, community, state and church initiatives to eradicate poverty, creative educational initiatives and control by parents, schools and states (not federal takeover), protection from invasion and illegal immigration and harmony among cultures, based on God and morality, not relativistic solutions. Abstract concepts alone, like interfaith, interdependence and harmony do not help — without clear moral guidelines that address often complex issues.
Thanks, Dr. Ferrantello. Your last paragraph highlights the very difficult challenges we will face trying to actually create a headwing idea. Your very detailed issue list covers things dear to both the right and the left. How to bring it all together?
I think you and others in this stream have hit the main point — it is “A God or no God question.” We must find the way to rally all people who believe in God in some way to understand how the Principled understanding of God leads to clear conclusions on all these issues.
This discussion is important. The Founder was not a political thinker, but his reference to headwing is informative. It does not suggest that we should be political centrists. The huge investments of the Founder in VOC, the WT and CAUSA illustrate his leaning toward the right. I and about 10 members of the congregation Henri attends campaigned for the President in 2016.
I am glad I did. I personally value the Constitution ratified in 1789 more than this recently proposed.
The lack of guidance from FFWPU leaders during the preceding five years on any political issue of our time is a yawning chasm that has to be filled with the natural ineluctable urging of our own original minds.
It’s up to we, the living, to take a stand to protect our children from the cultural rot that is bringing America down. It’s up to us to critique and pose an alternative to radical, totalitarian Islam. It’s up to us to affirm faith, family and freedom in our schools and in town halls. First step is to reject the premise that God’s Providence, the meaning of the word, is the sole province of the founder’s family.
No! We have to gather online and debate the ramifications of our scripture and visualize what our nation would look like under a heavenly culture. I am among many UC members who are thrilled with the initiatives of our new president, and we pray for him daily. And I am intrigued by several suggestions posed in the comments of others.
I really appreciate everyone’s comments here! Let’s keep the discussion going. How can we get traction on this? Would there be any way to get support from HQ on this kind of work?
Indeed this project requires sustained cooperative work. Just to add a couple of cents: We have to have a simple but persuasive idea of the meaning of left and right.
Here are a few contenders:
1) Left: big government; Right: small government
One problem with this is that it’s a sliding scale, not a clear principle.
2) (As the sister stated above) Left: Cain; Right: Abel.
One problem with this is that the terms still need fleshing out.
3) Left: conceptual; Right: traditional.
This is closer to the European or Burkean idea perhaps.
4) Left: Vision of the annointed; Right: Tragic vision.
This is a powerful interpretation, from Thomas Sowell
5) Left: Left Hegelianism; Right: Right Hegelianism
Harry Jaffa critiques both as historicist and relativistic, and perhaps places his own Lincolnian-Madisonian view at a principled center, rooted in the natural law idea of being created equal
6) Left: Democrat progressivism; Right: Republican constitutionalism
This of course limits the terms to the American context, and is itself contested and partisan.
I recommend that everyone buy and read Gordon Anderson’s book, Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, Version 4.0.
To avoid the trap of Democrat vs. Republican, liberal vs. conservative, etc. I began trying to evaluate laws, issues and problems using three questions. My 3 E’s:
1. Is it effective? By this I mean, in terms of governance, where should the decision-making and governing rest? Do the solutions address the problem? What are the ramifications or collateral damage for any given proposal. Certainly defense is a national or federal issue.
2. Is it efficient? I look at this from a process viewpoint. Are there efficiencies available? Are their cheaper, or perhaps quicker, alternatives? While our defense budget should be governed at the federal level, is it efficient? We would have to say no.
3. Is it ethical? Are there structural conflicts of interest in the process or with the agencies or laws involved? While we have elected representatives, many important issues are controlled by quasi-governmental agencies. We want ethical processes and transparency is central to that. Do we want to apply a standard set of ethical guidelines for all our elected officials? There are many ethical issues involved in defense procurement. If we can address these kinds of issues, the solutions I believe will be more in the area of headwing, as I see and understand it.
I have had discussions with very liberal, very conservative and libertarian people on topics as far-ranging as immigration, enironmental regulation, solving the pension insolvency issue, etc. I think this reflects my own experience, which is more problem-solving and process improvement oriented (I’ve spent most of my adult, professional life doing this) than some of the philosophical constructs outlined above. I do think the broad principles Henri outlined, Dr. Beebe outlined, and what others said make sense. As far as our movement making a new or big impact, I am not confident, but wish everyone well. I tend to think we need to learn how to make partnerships and influence them by being invaluable and serving a larger purpose, rather than trying to invent the past.
Ah, for me there is something critical here which has not yet been addressed to this point. That is, post-Foundation Day (2013), we are living in a new time period which has a different spiritual situation to the past. God’s needs have changed and any political headwing should also account for our changed situation.
Donna brings up that Father identified the left with Cain and the right with Abel. Yes he did, and we trace it back to the thieves on the left and right at Jesus’ crucifixion. However, post-Foundation Day, restoration has ended and the Cain-Abel paradigm no longer applies. So this characterization of left and right as Cain and Abel is no longer applicable or helpful for the contemporary spiritual situation. Headwing is only viable post-Foundation Day when we can acknowledge validity on both sides, and so transcend left or right. It is not headwing if it is only on the right.
In a similar vein, Doug suggests Father was on the right politically. However, I would suggest Father responded first to God rather than being right-wing per se. The demands of providence at the time needed the strong stance against communism that the right provided. However I believe that if God had needed him to be on the left he would have been on the left. Similarly we should be first thinking of God’s needs in the time period we are living in. If God shifts to the left could we? Or are we tied to the politics of the right rather than to God? Mother is emphasizing the Divine Feminine and tasking ICUS to environmental issues. Also the idea or goals of mutual interdependence and co-prosperity are being brought to the fore, which are not goals of the right. To me, this indicates that such a shift toward the left on the part of God is indeed occurring. Can we follow?
So Henri, this is an important issue, one that needs to be addressed with empathy and understanding for both sides if we are to resolve the conflict. Headwing is a much-needed concept. Thank you for bringing it up. Your bullet point that most resonates with me concerns dual purposes. I think it gives the best characterization of left and right I have seen, though I would add that corruption does not only occur on the left. Whole purpose of course needs to be subject in headwing.
“If God shifts to the left, could we?”
How can one even answer this question? Much of the left is hostile to the very idea of God. To most dedicated leftists, God does not even exist, except as something to mock superstitious Christians about.
The environment? If environmentalism is your issue, then welcome to the right! Wait, what?
I am myself a committed environmentalist where it counts, picking up tons of trash on my walks left behind by the leftists of my Montgomery County, Maryland. In fact, I think if you look at who creates the cleanest environments in which to live, the right wins overwhelmingly. I am not joking. The most beautiful, cleanest country on earth (from my totally neutral perspective that has nothing to do with my maternal ancestry) is Austria, but the dirtiest city in Austria is Vienna, the leftist enclave. 48 million pounds of garbage had to be removed afterwards from the environmentalist Dakota Access protest camp in North Dakota. The conservative North Dakotans cleaned up the mountains of garbage from the visiting environmentalists, restoring their beautiful state. The trash left behind after every leftist march in DC is legendary. Compare San Francisco or New York against any conservative region in the country, in terms of cleanliness. That is like pitting my eight-year-old’s basketball team against Villanova, it’s so lopsided.
This is a mischaracterization of Father’s quote about Cain and Abel. Headwing is thus not only on the right. It means that the Abel and/or most moral viewpoint leads the way for the unity of left and right. And, it identifies that unity can only come with a God-centered head, not just a centrist or equality view of two sides. Since Father used headwing from the time prior to Foundation Day, we cannot assume that it does not apply to after the first Foundation Day. Headwing Thought was Father’s term for the new era. Mutual interdependence and co-prosperity are clearly not just a leftist viewpoint. These values were in the U.S. Constitution, in the working together of different functions, or separation of powers and implied in “all men are created equal.”
No one who believes in true marriage and family values can believe that the leftist views of gay rights, redefinition of marriage, and transgender confusion are Unification or God-centered values. Thus, the Abel viewpoint is from the moral and vertical realm of family values not from left-wing. No way would TP lead from these leftist anti-family values. To say so is to confuse the basic meaning of these two factions.
Nevertheless, Cain and Abel is a restorational paradigm. Since Father declared restoration has ended, Cain and Abel is no longer the way to look at things. We don’t have fixed positions as in the past. Headwing will take some things from the left, some from the right. Whole purpose is subject, but individual purpose needs to be respected too. Taking the stance that the left is always morally wrong and the right always morally correct is not headwing. Neither side is categorically right or wrong about everything, and we should accept the best of both sides. Divine Principle suggests that socialism is the ideal, which is something more on the left. Does that mean we should reject everything on the right? No, of course not.
If we say that God’s Providence and His needs have moved on from Foundation Day, isn’t that the same as saying that God needs a political practice that transcends left and right, i.e., headwing?
If we have a goal of changing our existing society for the better, is there any doubt that the greatest threat to Godly life in the modern world is the destruction of gender roles and the family?
The problem of the family already takes us beyond left-right distinctions in one respect.
One left-right distinction I did not list earlier is:
Left: collective, community; Right: individualism.
The family as Unificationists understand it cuts across this distinction. We favor the trans-racial extended family. This is a level of social organization that is ordered according to rules of natural law.
The radical left and the libertarian right would prefer the Church not be involved in social policy. We need to make the case that:
1) liberalism/progressivism functions like a religion in that it is a comprehensive worldview, and its purveyors demand access to social policy;
2) state promotion of the family is not establishment of religion but is clearly in the interest of the state;
3) state sponsoring of progressive sexual policy is hurting all citizens;
4) pro-family policy is not “turning back the clock” but is socially “progressive” because it leads to healthy acknowledgement of gender roles, safe environments for children, more dignified life for “seniors,” and overturning of segregation through trans-racial marriage.
The restorational paradigm cast things in terms of “us” (Abel) and “them” (Cain/Satan) where we had to continually struggle against Cain/Satan to maintain the purity of “us.” This was true during restoration and this mindset of struggle was needed to maintain Abel’s foundation of faith. Now, however, we are beyond the Cain-Abel paradigm, and Satan himself repented almost 20 years ago (so we should even look forward to the creation of female angels). What this means is that the mindset of struggle against Cain/Satan is itself a thing of the past.
I firmly believe that ending restoration means we have to let go of the mindset of struggle against something that is perceived as a threat. Your response to me is predicated on the notion of struggle against a threat. I believe that to be a restorational mindset that is now not helpful. Instead of struggle, headwing should be looking for growth. How will growth happen? It won’t happen through war, but begins from an acceptance of each side as it is, even though neither side is perfect. Headwing should accept both, then identify, support, and promote that which is good in either side. Not fight against that which is perceived to be bad in “them.”
Continuing the “good fight” is the Cold War warrior mentality that no longer fits the times. Look at the young people, our second generation: they mostly do not have this warrior mentality. They are a sign of the times where God is moving.
David, respectfully, I think you miss the point. The whole idea of headwing is going beyond left-right struggle in order to articulate a centrist, harmonizing but principled politics. We are already accepting that both “sides” have legitimate interests, e.g., individual vs. community.
Respectfully back, your premise of struggle against a perceived threat indicates that you have not accepted the validity of both sides. The question is do we want peace or perpetual conflict? Headwing, for me, should be about peace and growth, not fighting and perpetual culture war. If we start from a position of conflict where “my” side must be correct, as you do, we cannot harmonize or bring peace. Even if we claim to be centrist it would not be true.
Look at a different situation. In the conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians the Christian right supports Israel and primarily blames the Palestinians. What did Father do? He made friends with Arafat. At the time, I really struggled with that; how could Father make friends with someone I perceived to be a terrorist? However, Father shows us that the path to peace is not to start from a position of conflict. The Christian right is afraid of Muslims. Father made friends with Farrakhan as well as Arafat. This is headwing.
Moral equivalence, anyone?
You could add left and right and divide it by two, but that won’t arrive at the Golden Mean, just at an average. The goal is to arrive at the Godly society. But how do we get there?
Peace is the leadership technique which gets us there, through recognizing the stakeholders and working with them, which also requires seeing whatever truth content is in their positions.
Some of the comments here end up being more instructive than the main essay, which is often the case on this Blog.
There was a time when Unification “group think” gave the appearance everyone had the same thoughts and shared the same views and beliefs about the same issues…. a seeming “one family under God,” yes…?
Perhaps for different reasons other than those David B. holds, I tend to lean towards supporting his worldview regarding “ending conflict.”
Hey, folks — what a great conversation! Thanks so much to everyone.
Related to Jack’s last comment, indeed, we do not have the uniform “group think” that we might have thought we had back when. But that’s a good thing, right? We all grew up!
So the question is: how can we actually make progress on this. I admit that, by myself, I have no idea. With so many diverse opinions, however, how do we find consensus, or even majority? I like to say, “If you have 10 Moonies, you’ll have 115 opinions!” -:)
This piece was designed to begin the conversation — which it has certainly done. But practically speaking, how do we undertake some sort of project on this? Or is that possible with such a diverse set of opinions out there? Yes, I know, I’m asking a lot of questions and not giving many answers. Sorry. But I think that is the nature of true democratic thought development, though. One person cannot possibly come up with all the answers…
Thanks to Henri for the careful way that he has opened this thread.
This discussion, with point and counterpoint in a spirit of shared endeavor, can help us articulate headwing in practical terms, guided by True Parents’ teaching and example. It is an urgent task, not only in America but also in Korea, and many other countries.
Parliamentarians across the political spectrum, and religious leaders of many faiths (including Islam), are responding to the headwing principles of “interdependence, mutual prosperity, and universal values.” Among the seven core points suggested by Henri, I’d like to offer a further thought about Providence. Korea, Japan and America surely have special roles, but providential things are happening in many nations now. The direction for headwing in any country is to work together to advocate and apply these core principles in providentially forward-looking ways.
As mentioned above by David Burton, True Father (and also True Mother) embraced and worked with anybody open to them. I have struggled with many things True Parents did and said, largely because I couldn’t do them myself — in this instance being open to Arafat, Farrakhan, and other left-leaning people. My heart has not been big enough to discern the goodness in all individuals, yet I do believe in it. So I look to True Parents for the example of how to exhibit the parental heart toward others, and I aspire to that goal. It really is the reason why individuals of all cultures and politics have been drawn to Father and Mother. And it’s the hardest thing in the world for others to adopt — the heart of a parent, which is the definition of trying to see from God’s point of view. As we learned from Divine Principle about the fall, the first is failure to take God’s point of view. Even though it seems almost impossible at times, it’s still our calling.
I really appreciate Henri’s article calling for headwing.
I’m someone who, through many years at UTS, has been relating with left-leaning folks: academics, liberal theologians, African-Americans, interfaith types, immigrants, etc. I’ve done right-wing work as well, writing against communism and actively working for Reagan’s election in 1980. But the majority of my efforts have been on the academic, left-leaning side, and I’ve developed some understanding of their views. Hence, it has been hard for me of late, seeing some of my brothers and sisters take strident right-wing positions and proclaim that they are on the Abel side while people like me who see things from a more left-wing perspective are Cain. Actually, I don’t mind being branded a Cain if by doing so I can connect to other Cains and bring them close to True Parents.
Unificationists have always held a spectrum of political beliefs, and Father employed us to reach Americans of all persuasions, right and left. While Father was alive and active, it didn’t matter much; we were all on the same team. The breadth of our activities, from anti-communist activism to the most liberal interfaith circles, was for me a mark of pride. I was proud to be part of a movement that could actualize headwing and move in every circle of life.
Some of us grumbled when during the MEPI tours we embraced Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, or when we partnered with Louis Farrakhan to hold the Million Family March in DC. Likewise, many of my friends couldn’t understand why I supported President Reagan and rolled their eyes at the positions of The Washington Times. But I shrugged off these problems as the cost of doing business when following a Messiah who extended his love in all directions. After all, we never fit neatly into anyone’s political box.
In those days we were all one family. We all felt ourselves to be on the Abel side, and those whom we reached out to to restore, be they conservatives or liberals, were the Cains whom we loved and cared for in the name of restoration. Aside from the great providential project to defeat communism in the 1970s and ’80s, issues of domestic politics were of small account compared to the world-changing work of True Parents to lay the foundation for God’s Kingdom. Hence, I never experienced the sort of quarreling over political differences among us that I’m finding today. It was not only because we were so busy in our respective mission fields. No, it was because we all felt keenly that we belonged to the central movement of history and attended the Center of the cosmos.
What do I take from these reminiscences? It’s that before we can have true headwing, we need to reaffirm the center on which the two wings hang. We need to reaffirm that before we are Republicans or Democrats, Trump supporters or Hillary supporters, we are first and foremost Unificationists who attend God and True Parents. From that center we can relate to the right or the left, yet coming from a higher point of view that gives us perspective to see how both sides fall short — and indeed they do, on many counts. Furthermore, I believe that from that center, with the wisdom of the Principle, we should be able to offer creative proposals addressing many of the nation’s problems that transcend either the right or the left.
“Hence, I never experienced the sort of quarreling over political differences among us that I’m finding today. It was not only because we were so busy in our respective mission fields. No, it was because we all felt keenly that we belonged to the central movement of history and attended the Center of the cosmos.”
I concur. Our movement is split along several religious lines and political views also divide people. I tend to think we need to practice active listening, respect for what each person has done over a lifetime, and what Dr. Selover stated, “interdependence, mutual prosperity and universal values” with each other first.
I think that while True Father was in charge of the movement, there was a necessary “pack mentality” and nobody had time or encouragement to develop their own opinions. Certainly it wasn’t encouraged to express contrary opinions, so everyone just kept thoughts to themselves and “followed the leader.” But since TF passed on, and since True Mother’s leadership encourages each person to take responsibility for him/herself (not that TF didn’t, but it is a new era), we are discovering the divisions of thought and heart among us that were previously suppressed. Father called this the time of “high noon,” and it certainly seems that way. No hiding in the shadows. Everything is coming out and some of it is rather unattractive. Accusations and charges of racism, for example, from within the movement. On the other side, charges of dark “pro-communist” sympathies toward those who see things differently. Of course, there is also the shocking development of the Sanctuary Church schism.
I for one believe these things are mostly healthy signs, kind of like lancing a boil — when things are not exposed to air and sunlight, infection can kill…. The one thing I see is that this group of human beings (Family Federation) is no different essentially from any other group of human beings. We just have a teaching that is different, one which can (if we choose it) liberate and guide us into greater happiness and oneness with God, and with each other.
Thank you, Laura. Thinking back, I don’t see the past as group think, but training or being instructed by a Master Teacher. And yes, I think it is High Noon for everyone.
OK then…what are the “universal values” that can be defined as being in accord with Godliness? Hard core progressives see religion as anathema to reason. Anti-essentialists will have none of that, as well. Do “universal values” need to be couched in religious terms or be defined by religious precepts? As Unificationists we say “yes.” Marx would say that we’re engaging in a “false consciousness.”
Fundamental to the DP view is the issue of freedom and being “co-creators” with God. The left is at odds with this and augurs for government to be the arbiters of social justice and virtue.
F.A. Hayek referred to social justice as a “mirage,” and a “meaningless conception.” Michael Novak (a Catholic) refers to social justice as “an instrument of ideological intimidation for the purpose of gaining the power of legal coercion.” It certainly has become that in many instances—and that is anathema to DP.
I think Henri’s list of universal values is very good. You will need to ask Dr. Selover to elaborate more on what he meant by universal values, co-prosperity and interdependence.
Thanks Dr. Wilson – well spoken by you, as always. I attempted to begin fleshing out “the center on which the two wings hang” for Unificationists in the bullet list in the piece. Then Dr. Anderson and others in this wonderful conversation proposed some others. Perhaps we can find some consensus on this list and begin from there?
In my view, the idea of a headwing ideology is quite distinct from the idea of a loving embrace of the various actors in a given conflict.
As a thought experiment, imagine we formed a political party. What would the main planks of the platform be? What kinds of strategies would we use to gain members and votes?
The party could be relatively focused, for example, on issues of the family or education. Or it could seek to address the main issues of the day more broadly.
Henri’s article raises certain issues, indicating how Unificationists relate to them. Do we tend to align with conservatives on family policy, liberals on environmental policy, conservatives on law and order, liberals on immigration? Perhaps, perhaps not. But this does not a worldview make.
The basic insight, I think, behind the headwing idea is that truth does not necessarily live at the extremes (although ideas tend to take us to extremes); that in a given policy dispute both sides usually have some degree of right or truth or justice on their side. That there may be a better means of conflict resolution than winner take all, or “elections have consequences”.
In CSG, Father says that headwing is predicated on “Godism,” and the “ism” in Godism means, “way of life.” In our post-Foundation Day circumstances we have entered a new era and like anything new we must begin to ascertain what are the proper virtues, moral codes necessary and processes to create a culture of peace. I believe Donna Farrentello is correct in asserting that “headwing” is not merely a “centrist” position, but rather it’s a moral and ethical base on which to create a Godly culture.
The Cheon Il Guk modality literally means “two-become-one.” In other words, working and striving for harmonious relationships in all endeavors. In politics, education, the arts, economic matters, etc., there needs to be an effort to create harmony/unity based on Godly virtues.
So let’s define those virtues.
TM’s is now all about Hyo Jeong—the virtue of filial love towards one’s parents. If acrimony, intolerance, spiteful invective, immorality, et. al., cause our Heavenly Parent and TPs pain or anguish, then those proclivities clearly do not comport with Godism or Hyo Jeong and need to addressed.
The current iteration of progressive liberalism is a far cry from that of JFK or Dr. King. The disdain for religion by progressives in general is a very troubling. Still, without Godism being in the equation there is no way to imagine getting to that “two-become-one” place.
Surely, Abel must love and embrace Cain by creating conditions for “natural surrender,” but Cain needs to be an active participant in the “two-become-one” process as well. Overcoming resentment, belligerence and abject disdain towards Abel is Cain’s responsibility in the attempt to create the Godly “way of life” that gets us to a culture of peace. Both parties must engage in the process.
Laura’s last comment reminded me of the testimony given by Anita Moorjan in her book, “Dying To Be Me: My Journey from Cancer, to Near Death, to True Healing.” Here’s a brief excerpt:
“Whenever I had conversations about illness, politics, or death, my views were so radically different because of my experience, that I simply couldn’t involve myself in the topics. I began to realize that my ability to judge and discern had become impaired. I was no longer able to draw definite distinctions between what was good or bad, right or wrong, because I wasn’t judged for anything during my NDE (near death experience). There was only compassion and the love was unconditional. I still felt that way towards myself and everyone around me. So I found myself with nothing but compassion for all the criminals and terrorists in the world, as well as their victims… I was no longer able to view the world in terms of us and them, that is, victims and perpetrators; There is no them. It’s all us. We are all one. Products of our own creation, of all our thoughts, actions, and beliefs. Even perpetrators are victims of their own self-hatred and pain….Because of my radically changed views, I became cautious about expressing my opinions, as I didn’t want to be misunderstood. I knew it would be hard for others to understand concepts such as there being no judgment after we die, even for the worst of terrorists. Even for them I conceived compassion, total understanding, and clarity for why they acted out for the way they did…”
Thank you for that excerpt, Jack. It does ring true. If our Heavenly Parent knows everything that has occurred, it includes all the depravities each person has indulged in, and the spiritual deprivations each has endured. God knows all the baggage each has inherited, all the reasons why one person took a destructive path, another was able to have courage and do better. I believe that’s why God truly doesn’t judge us, but rather we come to judge ourselves and suffer deep regrets if we didn’t use our time on earth for the sake of goodness.
Anyway, I think it’s imperative to promote the reality of spirit in the materialistic world of today. Even the most cynical people are hungry for love, whether or not they realize it. Culture is huge — music, books, movies are so powerful. YouTube could be used much more widely by Unificationists, I think. Some of our FFWPU Sunday services that are well done, with good sermons, could be broadcast via YouTube.
With respect to Rob, I conclude that group-think has always been a problem in our movement. The leaders of the three factions tend to be in high dudgeon over the absence of unity behind their respective leaders. Yet, in an age thirsty for transparency that’s a fool’s errand. The fact is, the term, “ headwing,” is a religious construct only, and may be compared to a paradoxical yet evocative term created by Religion founder Mary Baker Eddy: Christian Science. Headwing was created by the man who believed he was above politics, and who encouraged his followers to adopt the same mindset. That’s why this discussion is on a blog for theology enthusiasts and not a commentary blog for National Review, Weekly Standard or the Washington Examiner. Headwing is a metaphor for conflict resolution, and yet is seemingly unremarked and unspoken by polliticos, the folks engaged in the challenging hurly burly of campaigns and elections.
There are signs that a few members are finding their own voices. I guess brother Burton (my brother from another mother) and I would agree to disagree about the importance of having a fighting faith. The same messiah who invested half of his resources for 30 years to defeat communism risked his life to give a bear hug to the communist dictator who tried to kill him for years.
But that’s my messiah now as then. He took risks, spoke about hot topics, shook hands with unpopular cult leaders and made visionary but ill-fated investments in social engagement. Headwing is possible because we who knew him in the flesh can share our wisdom with American citizens who are campaigning for righteous candidates (there are good people in both parties.)
The most important arena for applied Unificationism is at the precinct level. That’s where our faith will be defined and tested. Our comfort zone is the cushy intramural discussion on private lists, Facebook and obscure blogs. Our allies are on the turf already, waiting for the old men and women on the sidelines to get into the game.
Good comments, Doug. As I mentioned when Henri first got this discussion started, CARP is in the process of developing material in an attempt to flesh out the headwing position. The key phrases are interdependence, mutual prosperity, and universally-shared values. But it is more than clarifying positions on key issues. Just as important is having the heart to embrace all people as God’s children, as some have alluded to in their posts. As I mentioned, in many ways, college campuses are the front line in the culture wars and we should be engaged. By developing these presentations, the hope is to empower our youth to engage with other students intelligently and respectfully. CARP should be a player on campuses and partner with other organizations, such as the Love and Fidelity Network, in the promotion of Principled positions to students. I would be happy to share more with any of you who are interested in developing this project as well as solicit your input in ongoing work.
Historically, new political parties and political movements arrive at a moment of crisis, or indeed after a long period of crisis culminating in frustration and despair.
Forgive the rhetorical gesture, but is not the family in the United States and the West in a prolonged crisis, and are not millions suffering from family collapse and individual frustration and despair?
Our movement is called the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, so at least at one point we must have believed we knew where the key to this problem is located. The central idea, then, of headwing politics must be the idea of the family…although perhaps we will need to expand that particular four position foundation to embrace all three of the Three Blessings.
I believe the central concepts of headwing politics are in the Three Blessings, which need to be elaborated in natural law and common sense language and presented as potential solutions for the gravest problems of our day.
Yes, way at the start, I gave a list of key points: the first being a moral stand for marriage and family….from that point…we need parental rights…and extended from that…parental rights to educate our children…Therefore, federal takeover of education is not principled….Best solution for public education rests with parents, schools and state offerings.
This main point about family control and values that Peter reiterates in “Family Federation” is essential and explains why the federal takeover of education is so odious, as well as the UN universal rights for children which tries to dictate control over families by a global committee and diminish parental rights….
And Paley’s Natural Law has the philosophical basis for marriage between a man and a woman that best refutes any redefinition of marriage.
Here’s a further thought about “interdependence, mutual prosperity, and universally-shared values” in relation to developing headwing. In the Korean original, these three concepts are parallel, based on the same structure (gong-seng, gong-yung, gong-eui; literally, co-living, co-prosperity, co-righteousness). “Co-righteousness” seems to be a new term in Korean as well as in English. In that sense, one aspect of headwing would be about finding and enhancing the righteousness of all sides. That’s how Rev. Jerry Falwell and Dr. Joseph Lowery could both be attracted to our cause at the same time.
I am a bit uncomfortable with Henri’s call to craft an “ideology,” because I am not convinced that at this time, ideological thinking is the right way forward. Ideology in politics is often a source of division, as it seeks to define the right way vs. the wrong way. It leads to arguments that begin from assertions that this and that policy or political position is wrong. This contradicts “finding and enhancing the righteousness of all sides,” as Dr. Selover puts it when describing the principle of co-righteousness.
I can often find righteousness of all sides, whether Trump or the Democrats. I can see the value of certain policies that might be contrary to an ideological agenda. Let’s take, for example, federal involvement in education, which Donna points out correctly has led to some policies that are anti-family. Nevertheless, historically federal involvement in education has done a great deal of good, by ending manifest racial discrimination in local school districts. So even though federal involvement may be bad from the lens of family, it can be good from the lens of promoting equality. Thus, there can be good either in what some see as bad, and bad in what some see as good.
As a person who tries to center on the Principle, I can love those on both sides by encouraging them to grow, to recognize the flaws in their own positions and to see the value in their opponents’ positions. God’s love should encourage growth to maturity. Humankind has been stuck at the top of the growth stage, but now, with True Parents’ victory and the global expansion of the Blessing we are beyond that level collectively. Hence now is the time for growth, by fostering positive giving and receiving with God. People can grow because God’s love is more available now than ever before, and God can reach people everywhere, whether through religion or through conscience.This is evident in the current ferment in society, both on the right and the left. With greater maturity, I believe we can get beyond the current quarrelsome political scene and begin to work more smoothly together for the whole purpose.
Responses from theory and abstract notions may not be grounded in facts and knowledge of the deeper problems of an issue. In the case of public education, especially CommonCore curriculum, a superficial exposure to the issues cannot point to a solution. Recommended are some resources to read about the depth of the issue which involves important freedoms, ideological skewing; federal controlled collection of personal data, long-term surveillance of individuals; suppression of context, excellence in the disciplines and creativity in curriculum; oppression of teaching methods; inaccurate assessments of age level operations in elementary level; suppression of parental rights and teacher rights, subordination of states’ rights; manipulation of SAT content to inhibit private school and religious school independence etc., illegal withholding of school funds due to compliance issues, and dumbing down math curriculum and preparation for college, just to name a few of the deeper issues involved.
While it may be fine to see good in different viewpoints, and it may create “good feeling” in dialogue, it does not create a solution in itself. Superficial, abstract notions do not address the facts and depth of specific issues. Our founder trained his people to recognize ideology and right vs. wrong (as in CAUSA critique of communism and counterproposal.) The solution to the issues mentioned above does not rest in what was done in the past, but in finding new and improved solutions to the issue. In the case of American education, the concerns that Andrew mentioned can be considered, and that is what headwing is about, to consider the concerns of all, but with better and different solutions than just what existed in the past. The best solutions, in my studied and experienced involvement with the issues of educational reform, involve giving back control to the states, schools, teachers and parents. Resources to consider: Dr. Peg Luksik, a foremost expert in CCC history, evaluation and critique. See TruthinEducation.com, Haltcommoncore.com; also, Dr. Jane Robbins, The Principles Project.
I agree with Dr. Wilson. Ideology is a secular form of mythology, where “truth” is grounded in assumptions and therefore only a partly real understanding of society. Pushing ideological principles to the exclusion of openness to higher truth often leads to inquisitions not unlike traditional religious fundamentalists. The general concept of “Godism” should be taken as transcendence. To embody God in a human-created ideology is to violate the First Commandment; like the worship of a statue or a king, the worship of an ideology is the worship of a false god.
This discussion brings us to an interesting point: Is headwing (or Godism) an ideology per se. Getting from the “abstract” and to the “applied” is what “Applied Unificationism” is all about.
What are relevant virtues that will allow us to realize the ideal that we consider necessary to fashion a culture of peace, unity, interdependence, prosperity, etc.? Once defined, we can then live accordingly in the pursuit of peace, prosperity, et. al.
In Philosophy 101, our lecturer taught us that political philosophy was rooted in ideas of human nature. Our teaching of the Three Blessings is the essence of our philosophical anthropology, or theory of human nature.
The theory of what it means to be a human being, to create a family, to build society, and integrate with the natural world are sketched in the Blessings. The virtues are those habits which lead to the fulfillment of these ultimate human goals.
Some human goals are in general religious and may have little impact on our political thinking. But other human goals require the existence of a political mode that allows for the development of the virtues so that members can attain to these goals.
If, for example, our children are being taught at grade school that marriage may be the unity of any two or more individuals, or that a child should be encouraged to challenge their own gender identity in the interest of authenticity, we know that virtues will be undermined rather than fostered.
In this circumstance, if I am a member of the Board of Education, I should oppose this false and evil ideology to the best of my ability. We are just where Jesus would say we must hate the sin while loving the sinner. Where is the space here to embrace the truth of the other side?
Many other social issues are negotiable, and they are specifically left/right:
* where do we delimit the size and role of government;
* where is the line between citizenship and non-citizenship;
* how important is equality of outcome vs equality of opportunity
I think this issue is a bit like the question of slavery in Lincoln’s day — which I could go into at another time.
Thank you, Henri, for identifying and addressing a key ideological issue.
Your effort to provide seven bullet points is worthy of much praise. UPF articulated five core principles that guide its worldwide outreach about a decade ago that can be found on all literature and on its website. A key reason why the worldwide reach of UPF has been strong and attracted religious, political and civil society leaders of differing persuasions, can be attributed to the articulation of the core values.
I wish the AU Blog would attract more folks who aren’t American so the discussion would broaden. The tension ideologically is between a vision for a Strong America which is much needed in the face of authoritarian regimes and a Global vision that embraces traditions that may not be familiar to Americans. There is also a generational tension since many millennials are not embracing traditional conservative views. Since the U.S. is currently the world leader, most people on earth do look to America for leadership even though they may not agree with its current positions on certain issues. When “headwing” can be effectively articulated for a global audience, it can fill the current vacuum of ideas. Bridging the cultural divide between the U.S. and the rest of the world is essential.
This is a good discussion. I agree with Henri’s assessment of the current dilemma. However, I find his core principles to be mostly non-starters, especially if one wants to engage the hard left. It’s questionable whether “the nature of fallen human beings,” the “natural family” (mother-father-children) as normative, the providence of God (with Korea, Japan and America in central providential positions), and the necessity of messianic intervention will engage the soft left or even liberal Christians.
The issue is whether one wants to be evangelical or ecumenical. One can hold onto non-negotiable principles with evangelical certitude or one can hold onto particular commitments but risk their transformation in dialog which could lead to mutual discovery. Some have pointed out that headwing derives from Godism. I agree. Godism is the vertical component of the Unification worldview, and headwing is the horizontal component. Godism is based on faith and revelation. Headwing, though it derives from Godism, is based on reason and investigation. Godism is ideological. Headwing is dialogical. They each function to enrich the other.
For this reason, headwing is not so much a content-based set of ideas (i.e., an ideology) so much as it is a methodology. Its purpose is to achieve harmony, or at least mutual understanding with would-be enemies. Rather than seek irreducible truths, we need to mine the Principle for ways of relating to the ideological or religious “other.” These include such concepts as individual truth bodies (that each human being is worthy of ultimate respect), give and take action (that there can be no progress or development without mutual engagement); stages of growth (that perfection can only be achieved incrementally); the primacy of conscience (that human beings intuitively know the truth); the necessity of voluntary surrender (that human beings should not be subject to coercion); and the ideal of co-existence, co-prosperity and common-cause or its more recent translation as interdependence, mutual prosperity and universally shared values.
Thanks for this, Dr. Mickler.
Your point about the “hard left” is well understood. And what about the “hard right?” I don’t think we can appeal to them, actually. Even after your formidable challenge (you are a formidable challenger 🙂 ), I stand with those bullets as stated. I don’t think we’re ever going to attract the hard left or the hard right. We can connect to people of conscience who believe in God in some way and also believe the family is central. Those two issues are core to almost all faith traditions.
I also sense that the God-believing core of folks is a majority, if we can just bring them together: moderate Democrats, most Republicans, Christians, Muslim, Buddhists and other immigrants, as well as non-affiliated folks who believe in God. I would never want to leave God or the family out of the picture.
I really appreciate the distinction between Godism and headwing being introduced here. That bears a lot more discussion too.
“And what about the “hard right?” I don’t think we can appeal to them, actually. ”
You also wrote:
• “The idea of the natural family, meaning a father, a mother and children (or at least a husband and wife). This is core Divine Principle and it must be included in any Unificationist system. Indeed, it must be central.”
Henri, the center has shifted so far to the left that you would now be regarded as hard right. That basic truth is not a belief allowed to be held in polite company.
I agree with Dr. Mickler that we should emphasize those aspects of the Principle where we can find common ground with others. Through building relationships on this basis, others can come to discover other more spiritual or religious aspects for themselves. It does no good for us to come off as stridently ideological or evangelical which will mostly alienate others. We already have enough polarization today without adding to it. God will back efforts to heal divisions and bring people together. This does not mean compromising our principles but maintaining a parental heart which is at the core of headwing.
Dr. Beebe, how do we “not compromise our principles” if we have no principles that we are determined not to compromise? The reason I delineate the threat of family destruction and how the FFWPU could be involved in the issue is because I think it is necessary to draw a line or two.
This is not because a headwing politician would go around judging others but because there must be some internal purpose to one’s political activity.
The family must be defended, but the means of doing so may be “many and varied.” I argued that from a certain view the family is centrist, and that is the case that has to be made. The healthy family benefits all of its members, and its health benefits all sectors of society.
Is racial tension high? What better solution than trans-racial families, and the recognition that we are all parents, children, brothers and sisters?
Is gay and transgender suicide at high rates? What solution is there other than the love that can transmitted in a family?
Is gun violence out of control? What solution is there other than the family?
One thing we can recognize is that our major parties are either actively pursuing policies that undermine the family or simply at a loss what to do.
And, if I may underline Donna’s point about vague principles (see below)….Remember that in the aftermath of the Bush I era “family values” discussions, the Democrats responded that they were also for “family values.” We would discover some time later that the Democrat family was different from the other family. And the United States is paying a heavy price for this ambiguity. As everyone loves to say about Neville Chamberlain, appeasement is not a winning strategy. Forgetting that law is a teacher, the West uniformly has embraced homosexuality as a civil right and has redefined marriage accordingly.
Statesmanship achieves the good that can be achieved, which cannot be known in advance; it does not “negotiate with a tiger when your head is in his mouth.”
As Peter is stressing, in only selecting non-threatening principles (and those we loosely have in common), and in sometimes very abstract conceptual ways (and, I would add that for the purpose of “openness….and mutual discovery” as one commenter phrased it), rather than real content and facts about the issues, we are at risk to repeat the same generalist stand that does not stand for real principles of God-centeredness and to get to real content solutions for issues that eventually have to discern right from wrong and deal with political ideologies or philosophies.
It is noticeable to me what some commenters will not say. No one deals with the very real strategies and, yes, ideologies of historic movements and problems in history….Few deal with the issue of deception and power behind the call for generalist abstract conceptions of compassion, justice, peace, racism, rapprochement and oneness that political entities have used to then gain overreaching power and control of its people.
Yes, we do have options for educating millennials and the public. Show them the videos of Apocalypse Stalin, the conditions where people were fooled by rhetoric and generalist abstract notions and promises….whether in the former USSR, Nazi Germany, Nicaragua under the Sandinistas, Mao’s China, Castro’s Cuba, and others…..In deriding the notion of ideology as leading to idol worship, one commenter warns against “traditional religious fundamentalism” but obfuscates and diverts us from the real facts of totalitarian political ideologies of these most evil regimes in history. Without taking a stand in real, content driven ways, we remain a weak and ineffective force in society, perpetuating generalist seminars and discussions that may feel good but do little to transform cultures.
There are excellent speakers that millennials and others can listen to: Lawrence Jones, an African-American leader from CampusReform.com, Professor Jordan Peterson from the University of Toronto, and many others.
Hi Donna, I appreciate your comments. I don’t think we should be doing feel-good events but winning people’s hearts with God’s truth and love.
The reason we have no place at the table of national political discussion is that we haven’t taken any stands on issues that matter since the fall of the Berlin Wall.
“The reason we have no place at the table of national political discussion is that we haven’t taken any stands on issues that matter since the fall of the Berlin Wall.”
I would beg to differ. Father led our movement to emphasize marriage and family, including traditional marriage. The left has resolutely resisted any discussion of what that means and worked to wreck the social standing of those who have tried to speak too loudly on this topic.
Family is where the developed world is collapsing most obviously, so this is certainly an issue that matters.
Wow, folks! I am so overwhelmed with gratitude for everyone taking the time to come here, read this piece and comment. We’re getting close to one of the more discussed pieces on the AU Blog.
I have another couple questions that might perhaps spur more discussion: How might we turn all of this into some kind of action? Which one of our formal entities might be able to actually sponsor some kind of effort to develop such a Headwing Thought concept more formally?
Father’s biggest investment and worldly effort in the United States was the Washington Times which has been strongly right wing throughout its history. That isn’t an accident. Father mobilized the members with great intensity in defense of Richard Nixon and for Ronald Reagan. Father was also to my understanding a big supporter of Jean Marie Le Pen of the National Front in France.
I feel quite certain that the right side of the political spectrum is more Abel-type (relatively of course). I also think Father was very clear on this point. Driving this home for me, on the occasion of Father’s death, we were made to endure a large wave of fresh slander against him by the left-wing media at a time when I honestly expected some sympathy and circumspection, as the left worked overtime to tarnish his memory. I have almost never seen anyone so unfairly attacked in death as the American left did to Father. Right wing media did not do this.
Writing about our core beliefs, Henri Schauffler wrote:
“A consideration of the divine nature of human beings.
The idea of the natural family, meaning a father, a mother and children (or at least a husband and wife). This is core Divine Principle and it must be included in any Unificationist system. Indeed, it must be central.”
Yes, these are pretty core to our belief system and the political left is very hostile to both of them. In fact, with regard to the second of these, the left in the United States has worked hard to prevent those who argue for the natural family from even having gainful employment, even a pizza restaurant (Memories Pizza of Indiana stands out to me) or a tech job. Many important figures in America have been driven from their positions for speaking on the natural family and the rest have fallen silent. Thus, in the public sphere, the left has driven our movement’s central DP teaching about the family (the dichotomy of male and female, plus and minus) all the way underground, Samizdat-style.
With regard to immigration and especially as it relates to Islam, the truth is painful. The eagerness for conquest by the Islamic world was even described at length in a recent scholarly post on this site. It is hard for me to comprehend those who believe the West should lie down in the face of this. Also, it appears that of all the regions of the world, the Islamic world is the only one where Father’s efforts at foundation were rendered stillborn.
Maybe this seems partisan, but it is true. SMM never embodied the squishy middle. In fact it was pretty clear that he regarded one side as far more relative Abel-type than the other, and thus his life work with The Washington Times, CAUSA and much else. That is our reality.
Dan, thanks so much for your comments and your passion. But allow me to challenge a few things 🙂 .
Firstly, True Father has always embraced all sides. He has worked with liberals and conservatives consistently over the years. I’ll always remember how liberal Dennis Kucinich worked with our movement and loves our movement. Believe it or not, Al Gore spoke at an ALC and was well received, as was Geraldine Ferraro. As referenced in the article, many liberals came to Father’s defense during the court trial and prison years.
And TF has also embraced all faiths. Particularly striking was his embrace of Islamic leaders in the ’90s. He hosted a number at East Garden a few times and to this day they are always important at all of our interfaith events.
Secondly, it is not true that liberals cannot embrace the centrality of the family. I have worked with many, many liberals who understand this message deeply, especially African-Americans. In fact, I believe when we stand up for the family, many on the liberal side will connect with it — we can actually help “separate the sheep from the goats” on the liberal side.
We are not talking about “the squishy middle,” but headwing, which is — yes — in the middle, but also above all the rest (centered clearly on God).
Daniel’s comments about a “squishy middle” are not entirely incorrect.
How we vote for America’s leaders shows whether we really support our founder’s admonition to us that we “should support a family values party….if you don’t get involved in political process….you will decline (SMM).” As our founder often said, the Holy Wine Blessing is conditional; it is in acting like a Central Blessed Family who takes responsibility for family, community, state and nation, that determines the character of the Marriage blessing.
In embracing ultra-liberal officials in dialogue and seminars, our founder did not condone their anti-family and/or anti-God attitudes and ideas. The one presidential candidate he clearly supported, Ronald Reagan, represented what our founder deemed the “Abel” side, the family values, conservative Republican, as well as founding The Washington Times, as Dan commented. Many of us are waiting to hear our pastors and leaders stand up in public and during elections for the pro-family and marriage candidates. We are waiting….
I appreciate your response and have to challenge back.
“We are not talking about “the squishy middle,” but headwing, which is — yes — in the middle, but also above all the rest (centered clearly on God).”
The problem is that the “middle” in America has been moving further and further left, such that the very central truths Father taught about the meaning of marriage, Sung-Sang and Hyung-Sang, the very purpose of creation, and the dichotomy of men and women, is now outside the realm of what is acceptable to say in public. This is an unbelievable situation where the Divine Principle itself is now outside the pale (not just the messiah part but the Principle of Creation part).
It is impossible to make peace and harmony when the other side will not even leave you any ground to stand on. References to politics of the 1990s are unfortunately out of date because of how far the center has moved in just the last two decades. Bill Clinton’s embrace of the Defense of Marriage Act (with most Democrats in Congress at the time voting in support), his tough crime bill and his welfare reform efforts might have him labeled “far-right” today. It’s not possible to talk about a center when “centrists” are expected to move further left every day, and when even moderate conservatives lose their platforms to speak.
Regarding your other point, indeed there are many African-American ministers and laity who are powerful Christians, and who preach strong family values. I have known many. I know blacks have been much less supportive of things like same-sex marriage than whites, and have a higher rate of church attendance and tithing. They are the ones with the leverage and voice to turn the Democrat Party back toward God. They are in a position to check the anti-faith tendencies of their party.
The Federation model is the key.
Father was surely embracing as well as respectful of various faith traditions. But he also had a central goal in mind, namely to get those of other faiths and socio-political perspectives to accept the authority of True Parents and Divine Principle. Whether MEPI, or ICUS, or The Washington Times, or ACLC, all had as their core aim the convincing of others “to see it our way” and then become John the Baptist figures.
Our “natural allies” are clearly those for whom religious belief, especially Judeo-Christian beliefs, are central to their lifestyles. Secularism born of postmodernism is surely anathema to all that, therefore building bridges with like-minded individuals and organizations is the key.
In CSG, Father states the he initiated the Federation model because we are a small group who can’t do all the heavy lifting on our own. The Federation mode was a way to more easily interface with others who can agree with our solutions and remedies for creating a culture of peace, mutual prosperity and interdependence. and this gets us to another conundrum — one that was addressed recently by Eugene Harnett on the AU Blog, namely, our identity. Are we church or a federation? Are there material differences? If so, what are they and how do we actually attract those JB figures to “see it our way?”
With regard to the squishy middle. As I pointed out above, ideas tend to take us to the extremes; compromise has been what keeps the two extremes talking to each other. But I believe the challenge of the headwing idea is to find principles that are in the center, and therefore a middle that is not squishy. Of course if we define left as “pursuing individual freedom at all costs,” the DP view of the meaning of life is close to the opposite extreme. But if we look at other aspects of the left/right split it may be possible to find real common ground.
This is why I focus on the idea of the family as not only God’s institution but as a solution for problems that are perceived as such by all sides of the various debates. This doesn’t make dialogue easy.
When you try to find common ground between two groups, all other groups tend to get left out. This is why you need a higher, transcendent, systems perspective. Between the Republicans and Democrats, fewer than 40% of Americans are represented. The headwing is not just the middle of the two groups who have managed to grab power.
The middle is not just common ground, but universal principles. As Peter said, that would be God, marriage and family. And, all groups don’t necessarily have to belong, especially if they are quite crazy and not able to converge around godly principles.
I do believe that far more than 40% believe in God in some way and hold up the family as the center of a healthy life and society. Certainly people of all faiths agree on this. That’s why I think there is a majority that can be coalesced around those bullet points I have in the original post. These will not just be Republicans and Democrats, but Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, and Buddhists, Native born Americans and most immigrants.
The challenge will be to cut through the present political and cultural noise and disinformation and reach these folks with a new message. I’m not saying it’s easy; it might be next to impossible. But True Parents have always forged ahead with the seemingly impossible, right?
Henri and all … great thread, so many articulate people in our movement!
I know from 16 years of debates in the state legislature that there are generally seeds of truth in left and right wing ideas. And I believe the diversity of ideas in our movement and culture reflects the vastness of the mind and heart of God. For the left and right base, compromise = a mortal sin. And, the 24/7 social media onslaught reminds the base what they believe and how wrong is the other side, there is no negotiation.
Yet, in a democratic republic like ours the policy system is built to incorporate diverse ideas and policy that, generally, is the result of compromise. This is what happens in healthy marriages and families and in the business world where certain skills are practiced and there is mutual understanding and respect.
In addition to your core ideological principles Henri, I think another prism to evaluate policy is to consider the four fallen natures, especially the concept of “proper position” in the world Cheong Il Guk imagines. And, I don’t like the term ‘headwing,’ because an outsider might see this concept as a surrender to core principles. Father used other terms to describe our ideology — Godism, the Abel Culture, Familyism and Family Federation Ideology which may be a better term, I don’t know.
In our small and intimate church community in New Mexico, we have conservative R’s and liberal D’s who love and respect each other and we are able to find common ground. Jesus and TF modeled leading diverse peoples with deep heart and clear values, with heart being subject. That is the challenge facing us as Unificationists as we immerse ourselves in popular culture, find our voice and deepen our hearts. I don’t know that we can delineate DP public policy. We can create a framework of core values as you suggest but I think policy specifics will result organically from diverse groups led with deep heart and clear values.
Good points, Mark. Yes, compromise is important many times to get things done politically. But we know there were some areas True Parents would not compromise on, e.g., communism, homosexuality, adultery, etc., many of which have been mainstreamed. What to do in these situations? At the same time, if we, who know and accept True Parents, cannot find agreement, how can we expect the larger culture to do so?
Great questions. I think we need to advocate for “Models of Health” based on core DP principles and good social science. With regards to marriage, both elevate married biological parents as the model. And two parents are better than one, whether they be adoptive, foster or same-sex partners. Advocacy for something is always better than opposing something else.
With regards to our “official” position on homosexuality, here are my thoughts. I led the debate in the state senate in opposition to same-sex marriage, although I co-authored a bill that would give same-sex couples the rights and benefits of marriage without the name. When my brother, Brian, was appointed to the all gay delegation at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, the Albuquerque Journal asked for my thoughts on how I could reconcile my opposition to same-sex marriage and the same time support my brother. I told them I thought most gay couples (not the advocacy groups!) were OK with the benefits and didn’t need the marriage label and, as a religious person, I was more concerned with the log in my eye than the speck in my brother’s eye. I had several fundamental Christians call and thank me for that perspective because they had heard judgement towards gay lifestyles from the pulpit and were searching for a biblical understanding on what their attitude should be. On many social issues I think we can advocate for clear models but soften the judgement.
Certainly agreement is important, and compromise can help with agreement, but ultimately agreement should be on what leads to the best outcome. If one party has a strategy in which 40% are exploited by the majority and the other party has a strategy that leads to 20% being exploited, then a compromise that leads to 30% being exploited is not as good as agreement on a new strategy in which no one is exploited.
What we now view as the rock solid base of our Republican government began as a series of “compromises.” The Constitution in and of itself was adopted without the Bill of Rights. This was a compromise because these rights were not agreed to. When the Congress met again, to obtain the buy-in of the smaller and Southern states, the bicameral legislature with two senators per state was a compromise that allowed the small states to sign on and not deal with the very contentious issue of slavery allowed the Southern states to add to the Bill of Rights. Now the founding fathers on both sides of these issues felt very strongly about their positions. It somehow came together to what they believed to be a compromise of their most cherished ideals. To actually move “the more perfect union” forward, to actually adopt programs and to find money for all this, those who are serious and see this as their calling will have to swallow their view of the world, as the founding fathers did and make some compromises.
Good points, Rob. They made compromises, but they were not compromises in the middle of two existing systems. They were making compromises to create something that transcended previous systems, so the compromise was of a very different nature than advocating a compromise between left and right. Headwing is in front and may have to compromise with the evils in both parties to drag them along. Hopefully, both parties have now transcended slavery, but both create forms of oppression, so something in the middle of them is not likely a good solution.
What we’re talking about with the idea of a “headwing” is not just “in the middle,” but higher, meaning transcendent or connected to God. That is what Father meant; he even described it directly that way. So I don’t think headwing will want to compromise; I don’t remember Father ever compromising on anything.
As I have mentioned, I think, if we can find a way to develop a true headwing/Godism idea, many people of conscience and those committed to true spiritual traditions will resonate with it. It will not reach everyone. But it could be a majority over time if done correctly. The “done correctly” part is what I am not sure of.
I think the CAUSA initiative was very successful. The material was very well prepared by Drs. Lay and Ward and associates, and delivered extremely professionally. Thousands of leaders from many persuasions were brought through that material. If our movement would put up the resources to develop something like that again, I think we could achieve great things.
With regard to “compromise;” can we be compromising on the issue of Godism, which is the central tenet of headwing? The abnegation of religion — especially the Judeo-Christian religion — has become de rigueur in certain ideological/philosophical spheres. “There are no meta-narratives,” the secular, postmodernists claim with unflinching certainty.
Too often there is a common misconception that the Enlightenment was a kind of lightning bolt that abruptly ended all religious belief and the reliance on supernatural phenomenon resulting in the immediate supplanting of religious beliefs with reason and logic. In fact, there was no immediate rejection of religion and as we know, many people, including the founding fathers that Rob Sayre mentions, continued to be “believers.” Some were men of Holy Orders.
The ideological debates that have erupted in the late 20th century are largely predicated on the idea that God and religion have been more harmful than helpful in creating a better world. British author Melanie Phillips claims (rightly so, in my opinion), that the current iteration of culture wars and the subsequent “unraveling of the Enlightenment” is the result of the spurious rationale “that reason can exist detached from the civilization that gave it birth…the fundamental error of thinking that to be ‘enlightened’ necessarily entails a repudiation of religion.”
Several commentators here have argued against the idea of ideology in favor of a more practical approach (methodology) to realizing our ideals. We understand our founder’s cautionary remarks about how “God is leaving America” in the context of needing a cultural shift back to the idea that God and godly virtues need to be in the cultural equation.
Book 10 of Cheon Seong Gyeong (The Philosophy of Peace) is a broad outline of the three blessings and how Headwing Thought can actually be realized — a de facto methodology. And central to that methodology is Godism. It seems, according to our founders, that there can be no compromise on this point.
“Godism” means different things to different people based on their own level of development. To a young child, it might be taken as a command to literally obey TF’s words. To those who have developed the capacity to reason, but not a high degree of psycho-social development, it might be viewed more as a logical adherence to an ideology, like Marxists attempt. (e.g., a logical argument with communism — perhaps Dr. Lee’s approach), and a mature approach might be one that both understands logical reality and its limitations and acts “from the heart of the Father.” These three stages of development reflect TF’s teaching where he used three levels of obedience as an example:
“There are three types of obedience. One is just to obey whatever is told you. The next type is to obey while always seeking to know God, Truth, and the why of things. The third type is obedience after knowing the heart of the Father.”
Im my view, much of the past “Godism” remained at the second level. That approach will be inadequate. In fact, the “-ism” in Godism may be a problem if one believes logic can, by itself, be the answer. We were given two halves of a brain, the left is for logic and reason, the right is more involved with wholeness, compassion, and psycho-social development. These two sides need to be connected in any “headwing” thought.
This is exactly what CARP is hoping to accomplish.
Thanks for making this most recent comment. I think your contribution here is important, as you seek to address the more subtle and “soft” elements of a “dynamic faith.” It remains to be seen whether or not “Unification thinkers” will be able to embrace and incorporate the best and most worthy aspects of time-tested Western models for human growth and development.
I think there is a misunderstanding here that I tried to clear up. To say that headwing is partly a set of ideas and value commitments does not mean that headwingers are attempting to force an agenda.
I think Lincoln is instructive here. He respected the “public mind” even when he might have disagreed with it, partly because he thought that government had no right to bully the people it should be representing, and because the Constitution limited his ability to act.
However there is also the public square and arguments can be made there to educate, inform and inspire — as Lincoln did in his younger days. Also, since the days of the founders, it was understood that education was to inculcate virtues and the interest of society, and that these goals were not antithetical to the best interests of the child.
If society has come to the point that gay marriage, multiple marriage or incest is acceptable, politicians cannot override such sentiments. But they can attempt to educate and guide and point out significant problems that are likely to appear down the road.
Thanks Peter and everyone.
If headwing is meant to be something related to politics, and I believe it is, then it would aspire to rally citizens under some semblance of the bullet points I outlined in the piece. The idea is that this would be a new kind of coalition — people who, to simplify, believe in the divine origins of humankind and the primacy of the family structure in human society. Those beliefs cut across a wide spectrum of what is now the right and the left. As has been expressed, the extremes on either side would not be able to join such a coalition, but the vast majority of practicing Christians, Muslims and Jews, along with Hindus and others, can rally around these ideas.
This would create a whole new dynamic in politics, one which transcends right and left as we know it. I believe that is what True Father had in mind with “headwing.”
The encapsulation of headwing is the Family Pledge.
Thank you, Henri, for this analysis of “headwing.” It is very enlightening.
Building on the idea that the purpose of headwing society is to enable the attainment of human happiness, the next step is to discover how each social sphere, freed from human dictatorships, can best help society achieve this goal.
I’m grateful for Henri’s article and all of the insightful comments. I hope that this vital dialogue will continue. I would like to share one of my favorite quotes from True Father:
“The twenty-first century shall be a century of righteousness. It will be a century of spirit and soul, when wealth will not be the dominating factor. It will be a century when God and human beings live together as one. A new awareness will come to every person – that living for the sake of others has eternal value, far greater than living for oneself. In the twenty-first century, selfishness will decline. The altruistic values of interdependence, mutual prosperity and universally shared values will be triumphant.” (Sun Myung Moon (219:120, Aug. 28, 1991)
Let’s be “Light Wing,” which is neither right-wing nor left-wing…maybe a better term than “Head Wing!” As in Mt. 5:14-15, “You are the light of the world… (be a) light to everyone.”
Rather than focus on “left-right,” the better characterization might be “higher-lower.” What are the higher virtues and values necessary to create a culture of peace?
The highest virtue would be true parental love. A prerequisite for that is being able to love and care for yourself — the first blessing.