“Why would an aspiring young writer of fiction and poetry such as author K. Gordon Neufeld join an extreme religion like the Unification Church of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon? How did Neufeld’s involvement in this group impact his creative writing, and how did writing impact his involvement? After leaving the group, how did Neufeld process his experiences through creative writing? Finally, what value can writing have for other survivors of extreme religions? These are the questions this book explores, while providing samples of Neufeld’s creative writing from 1973 to 2013. The four questions are explored in a series of four academic papers presented at conferences of the International Cultic Studies Association. The sample writings range from highly intense personal reflections to zany and irreverent spoofs, and include many sensitive, thoughtful short stories and poems. This collection will be of interest to academics wanting to understand the psychological roots and effects of cultic involvement, and also to general readers who just want to read a good story.”
"This week, we look forward to an exciting six weeks on the road beginning this Sunday, June 22. The God’s Hope for America revival road trip kickoff is preceded by the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification (FFWPU) National Assembly, taking place this weekend in San Francisco.
Like any leap of faith throughout history—the pilgrims coming to America, the Israelites leaving Egypt, or True Father following his calling—this will be a journey of faith, where we go forward not knowing what will unfold. With this mindset and conviction we look forward to crossing the country as champions of God’s Hope!
Register today to participate in this unforgettable tour, and be sure to take part in events in your local area as the bus comes through!”
Watch the video on the link to see lame Moonie events eternally re-hashed.
The Korean Mind: Understanding Contemporary Korean Culture
Adul The “Son” Culture
During Korea’s last—and longest—dynasty (which began in 1592 and did not officially end until 1910), the structure and ethics of society came to revolve around ancestor worship. It also became a matter of law that the primary rituals of ancestor worship had to be performed by the oldest male in each family, making it essential that each family have at least one adul (ah-duhl) or “son” to carry out these vital ceremonies.
The rituals of ancestor worship and the importance of having sons became the central theme in the lives of all husbands and wives, resulting in the appearance of attitudes and practices that were to have a profound effect on the culture, with women being held responsible for producing male children—it not being known at that time that it is the sperm that determines the sex of offspring.
In addition to virtually compelling men to take secondary wives when their primary wives failed to have sons, this cult-like custom resulted in females in general being treated as instruments of utility. Among other things, the process of selecting wives for sons took on a pseudo-scientific air, with mothers judging the potential capacity for would-be brides to bear sons on the basis of a long list of physical attributes.
Eventually these attributes were codified into thirteen “physical requirements” that prospective mothers-in-law and other marriage go-betweens used to measure the potential for young girls to bear sons:
1. Eyebrows that were straight (a masculine characteristic) and slanted downward, along with flat, smooth foreheads
2. Large, wide buttocks and correspondingly large, wide stomachs
3. A voice that was even toned and a well-developed chest that indicated good breathing capacity
4. Smooth, silky skin that was translucent, “like water”
5. Hands that were shapely and tapered (instead of square and stubby)
6. An angular face that had the profile of a goose or flea
7. Rounded shoulders and a thick back that denoted physical balance and strength
8. Well-developed breasts, with dark, firm nipples
9. A nose with a high ridge and slanted eyes
10. A stomach muscle that was thick and well developed, and a deep-seated navel
11. Wide eyes with “long, slender” corners that were dry
12. Skin that was shiny and fragrant
13. Rosy palms.
These qualifications took precedence over beauty and other feminine features typically associated with women. In contrast, there were twenty-nine physical attributes that were believed to indicate that a woman was unlikely to bear sons. These features included a fragile body, a small squeaky voice, small breasts with pale nipples, a flattened nose bridge, ears turned inside out, a small mouth with a broad face, yellow or red hair, thin eyebrows, thin lips that were pale, a small shallow navel, protruding lips, and unruly coarse hair.
In addition to attempting to follow these physical qualifications in selecting brides, parents provided their sons and daughters with written instructions on how to perform sexual intercourse so as to enhance the possibility of conceiving sons instead of daughters. These guidelines were based on the belief that the uterus had two openings, one that resulted in the conception of a male fetus and one that produced a female child. It was believed that if the male sperm entered the left opening a son would be conceived; if it entered the opening on the right side, a female child would be conceived. This resulted in wives lying on their left side and remaining very still after intercourse in the hope that the male sperm would enter the left opening.
It was also believed that intercourse on the first, third, and fifth days after the menstrual period was most likely to produce male children, while intercourse on the second, fourth, and sixth days would result in female children. In their obsessive desire to have sons, most couples avoided having intercourse on these latter days. There was a variety of other beliefs and rules pertaining to conceiving sons, including the best time of the day or night and the best positions for intercourse, all of which were depicted graphically on colorful charts provided to newlyweds by their parents.
Special prayers and a number of ceremonial rituals were performed by mothers-in-law, brides, and their husbands in an effort to ensure the conception of sons. One of these practices was to place a mixture of blue salts, musk powder, and ground-up mugwort in the sonless wife’s navel and set it afire. Records show that this cauterization process was sometimes carried out as many as two hundred times by husbands anxious to have sons—and that the custom was still widely practiced until the mid-1900s. Also until modern times, women could not serve as midwives unless they themselves had given birth to several sons, and the more sons a woman had the more highly she was esteemed as a midwife.
Families celebrated the birth of sons with special fanfare. One of the customs was to attach red peppers, symbolic of penises, to ropes and leave them hanging outside their homes for several days for all the neighbors to see. It was common for adults to ask small boys to show them their “pepper” (penis) as public proof of their maleness. In the case of girls, pieces of charcoal were tied to the ropes.
Most of the superstitions and practices involving efforts to have male children have gone by the wayside in modern-day Korea, but sons are still particularly important because males continue to play a dominant role in Korean society.
from The Korean Mind: Understanding Contemporary Korean Culture
by Boye Lafayette De Mente ISBN: 978-0804842716
In Jin Moon criticizes the “Cheongpyeong Providence”
An understanding of orthodoxy and heresy in Korean church history.
extracts from the article – link to full version below.
Jeong-Min Suh is professor of theology at Yonsei University, Seoul, Republic of Korea. He teaches Christina ethics and has contributed widely to research and publications on issues of national identity and religion in East Asia.
The line of faith movements and the problem of sects
After 1930 various sectarian movements arose which, as well as expressing discontent with the mainstream missionary church regimes, also expressed differences regarding the content of faith. A typical example of these sectarian movements was the ‘Mystic Faith Movement’ of Rev. Lee Yong-do and his Jesus Church.
In 1927, there was a woman named Yu Myung-wha in the Wonsan Methodist Church. She maintained that Jesus descended directly upon her. At a revival service, she was dressed like Jesus and performed a spiritual healing on another woman. (14)
This case was connected with Han Jun-myung, Park Seung-gul, and Paek Nam-ju who were professors at Wonsan Sinhaksan, and involved in a religious movement. This group was called the Wonsan Spiritualist Party and included laywomen Kim Jung-il and Kim Sung-do who were related to the Seju church in Chulsan. Afterward, Rev. Lee Yong-do and Lee Ho-bin who were acquainted with them along with Paek Nam-ju founded the Jesus Church. (15) Here started the most famous mystical sect in Korean church history. The Jesus Church shared a common goal with the Choson Church and had a tendency to be against missionaries. But, it had the strong features of a sect, in which faith activities and expressions of faith were expressed differently. The famous but strange heretical case, the Hwang Kuk-ju case, is an example.
Hwang Kuk-ju said, “My head equals Jesus’ head, my blood equals Jesus’ blood and my heart equals Jesus’ heart. My everything equals Jesus.” He made a pilgrimage to found the new Jerusalem. When the news came of his coming to Seoul, large crowds gathered and filled the streets to see him. About 60 unmarried and married women who had abandoned their homes entered into the city with Hwang Kuk-ju, which disturbed many churches. (16)
Hwang’s mystical activities resulted in a strange union with Christ, immorality, adulteries, and ecstasy. Finally he and his followers resided in Mt. Samgak [just north of Seoul] and there they followed the doctrine of exchanging necks, which meant to exchange one’s neck with Jesus’ neck, and exchanging blood, which meant to exchange one’s blood with Jesus’ blood, as well as other spiritual exchanges and group sex. He claimed that he was the incarnation of Jesus in Young-ge, a magazine which he published. (17)
The revival movement of Lee Yong-do had led to discussion, but the spiritualism of the Wonsan party, and the strange pilgrimage of Hwang Guk-ju could not be accepted as legitimate forms of Christianity in Korean church history, which was only 50 years old. At the same time, there were sects which didn’t belong to mainstream churches or denominations but established as foundational their own Christian definitions on issues such as morality. They continued to challenge the main churches and denominations. The Korean non-church movement, promoted by Kim Kyo-shin was a good example.
Social change and pathological heresy problems
After the dark age of Japanese rule, Korea was involved in partition and war and the Korean church also faced a period of suffering and division. After 1945 Korean history did not move in a positive direction. The pain of division and war in some respects surpassed the hardship of the dark age of Japanese rule. Chaos and suffering were the contexts of the Korean church which also experienced inner division and conflicts. Firstly, with the division of Korea, North Korean churches were split and disintegrated. During the Korean war, both South and North Korean churches experienced severe martyrdom and sufferings. The South Korean church faced serious dividing forces such as the problem of religious piety, (33) and theological (34) and ideological conflicts. (35) Despite suffering from all these conflicts and problems, however, the Korean church grew dramatically in numbers. This had something to do with sudden changes in Korean society with the anxiety creating religious demands. It may be natural that a lot of new heretic sects in Christianity appeared with this paradigm of confusion and growth of the Korean church.
He was known as Moon Yesu, ‘Jesus Moon,’ the “physical Jesus” in the 1950s
Gil Ja Sa Eu “At Ewha University, hundreds of students heard the DP and were moved by it. But in the end only 14 stood firm and were kicked out. Professor Yang witnessed to Maria Pak, a very powerful woman. She was intrigued by the idea of a man who was “physical Jesus” and was revealing secrets of the Bible. She was brought to the house where Father was teaching at that time, but it was jam-packed; not even any elbow room. Father was poorly dressed and everyone was sweaty and somewhat dirty in her eyes. Finally, she could take it no longer, cried out in frustration, got up and left. Afterwards, Father was told who she was and he was upset with Prof. Yang. “To meet such a person, I need to dress up and meet them in a nice place such as a hotel”, he told her. Reflecting later, he noted, “Compared with Jesus’ manger and the stable where he was born, it was not so bad.” Maria Pak became one of our worst persecutors in Korea.”
June 1, 2001 Washington, D.C. Family Church
Korea: A Historical and Cultural Dictionary
Keith Pratt and Richard Rutt ISBN 978-0700704644
… in 1953. He taught that although Christ had brought spiritual salvation, he, at this time known as Mun Yesu, ‘Jesus Mun’, had brought the necessary complementary physical salvation. He wrote a new scripture, ‘The Divine Principle’, to be added to the Bible, and conducted some dramatic ceremonies, including the Marriage of the Lamb, when he took a very young new wife. He controlled every individual in his flock, conducting mass weddings of couples chosen to be spouses by himself, and instituted draconian evangelistic training for them. He was firmly anti-communist and soon established branches overseas, especially in the USA (where Mun lived after 1973 and there were 3,000 followers in 1980), preaching that full salvation came out of Korea. In 1982 he was convicted of income tax fraud. He then moved to Brazil, whence he returned to Korea in 1998. …
Gil Ja Sa Eu My Testimony (1980) (Spring 1955 at Ewha University)
“I bought many Bible commentaries, and read them but none of them had what I was looking for. Whenever I received expense money from home, rather than buying clothes, I would buy books in this area and try to work out my questions. Toward the end of my junior year I began hearing a strange rumor.
They said there was a “Unification Church” which would solve all the unknown facts about the Bible, and that a Moon Jesus had come.
At first I paid no attention, because this group said that Jesus would come as a man and I always had believed he would come on the clouds. As the days went by, however, more and more students in my dormitory began going to the Unification Church. Particularly my close friend Shin Mi-shik (Mrs. Sang Ik Choi) began going there and invited me to go with her.”
… “Soon after I began hearing the rumor that Professor Kim was going to the church, five capable professors, including Professor Kim, and the English literature professor, were fired by the university. They had been told to choose between their academic careers and the Unification Church and had chosen the church.
One evening after dinner I went out on to the field with my friend Mi-shik and as we walked I asked her in a whisper, “Is Moon Jesus really Jesus?” she had been walking a step ahead of me, but hearing my question she turned around and said angrily, “You don’t know anything! How can you be qualified to ask such a question?”
Her attitude was so serious and solemn that I wasn’t able to say anything further. Only my heart was pounding. Soon I said, “Then I’ll go there and see!” My pride had been hurt by her saying that I wasn’t qualified, and I promised to go with her forgetting that I had been resisting her invitations for three months.
She smiled and said, “Then shall we go?””
from pages 14-15 and 17
“Yong-do Lee’s self-identification with Jesus himself” by Pak
Millennialism in the Korean Protestant Church (Asian Thought and Culture) by Ung Kyu Pak ISBN: 978-0820452692
Publisher: Peter Lang Pub Inc; 1 edition (30 Nov 2005)
“Yong-do Lee regarded the spirit and the physical body as mutually independent and in conflict. With these two realities in one being, man is in constant inner conflict, According to his understanding of the Fall, man lost life, became evil, and became a child of darkness, as a result of his tenacity for attachment to the physical. Since then, the world has been divided between the powers of spirit and of matter, and life has become a battleground. Human pain and suffering spring from that battle. Man’s life is divided between life in the spirit and life in the flesh. Even Lee’s anti-Western sentiments sprang from that dualism, with the West representing the material, and the East the spiritual.
Thus, salvation to Lee is the victory of spirit over flesh. To live in the spirit, one must die to the flesh.
Lee expressed this mystical union with Christ in nuptial terms: “The Lord is my husband, and I am his wife. O Lord! allow me an opportunity of the intimate fellowship of love in our bedroom.” He declared that “in order to seek Christ’s love, come to the inside, which is the ‘holy of holies of love’ where you embrace him and praise your love.“ There is also a sacramental mysticism in his thought: “You, being obsessed by Jesus, eat him and drink him, and are no longer a this-worldly human being.”
From this mystic union, Lee developed the idea of an “exchange of life,” which was possible through “the bloody connection with Christ.” This idea gave rise to fringe movements, especially in the 1930s and after the Korean War of 1950-53. Being, absorbed in the immediate presence of Christ through mystic union, Lee did disregard the Scripture and historic Christianity. His placing of experience above canonical revelation put him close to cultic leaders, while isolated him from church leaders. Hyuk Namkung, moderator of Pyungyang Presbytery, sent a letter of warning to each churches in the presbytery, saying: “Yong-Do Lee and his movement is a sort of mysticism that puts more emphasis on religious experience above objective religious norms. … Even he claimed that there can he an extra-revelation beyond the Scripture.” Hyung-Nong Park also criticized Lee‘s overemphasis on religious emotion and experience.
Without discerning the work of God, Lee once knelt down before one of the cultic leaders, Myung-Wha Yu, and said to her, “O Lord!” He regarded her religious admonitions as the words of Christ.
Also, his dualistic division between spirit and flesh blinded him to the theological problems of the cultic leaders and their resulting behavior. His disregard of the flesh led him to disregard their immoral behavior which was carried out under the name of religion.
Lee expressed his longing for Jesus in terms of the marital relationship. “Thou art the groom. I am Thy bride. Grant me a moment of loving communion with Thee in Thy chamber.” The love of God that is experienced in this communion is so powerful that there is no place where it cannot reach. God looks on the inner man, and bears the same love toward high and low, foreigner and national, child and adult, even his enemies. Therefore, for man to dislike or disdain the prostitute, the beggar, the illiterate, or the child, is to be ignorant of God’s love. By this understanding of love derived from communion with God, Lee extended his love to everyone. For him, the love that is experienced in communion with God produced that Christian humility which welcomes a beggar as the Lord and the child as a prophet. Even in his fellowship with cultic leaders, there could be no hesitation, because of his unlimited love.
Lee believed that in this mystical communion, and in a similar moment in the Eucharist, the blood of Jesus Christ is infused into the believer. This mystical experience of blood-infusion and union finally became elevated into a self-identification with Jesus himself:
I have been cursed all day long. My eyes are drawn in tears. l shed tears that the people should have shed. My heart is pained. I lament and beat my breast, for I bear the painful hearts of people. My blood runs dry and my flesh has been torn for the people. O my fellow Koreans, drink from my blood and eat my flesh. I came for you. Drink and eat and have everlasting life, for my blood and flesh enrich you.
The Hwanghoe and Pyongyang Presbyteries passed resolutions in 1931 prohibiting their churches from sponsoring Lee’s revival meetings. In 1932, the Seoul District of the Korean Methodist Church, to which Lee belonged, appointed a commission to investigate him. Lee’s extreme mysticism led him to an association with cultic leaders…
From this moment on, Lee’s martyr complex began to manifest itself. “Who is the man who would play the role of Jesus Christ in Korea today? Where is he?” he asked, and then continued in his diary: “Weep and cry, saintly men and women. Where is the Gethsemane that awaits my tears and blood?” Here he came to the point of complete self-identification with Jesus.
At one revival meeting in 1927, Myung-Wha Yu, who was a coworker with Han, claimed that Jesus Christ personally infused her and she began to prophesy to her followers to have saintly children for God. With this extreme group, Yong-Do Lee did not clearly disassociate himself; indeed, he once knelt down before Yoo, in order to receive her words as the Lord’s words. When this group, facing severe criticism from established church leaders and Japanese authorities, asked to organize a religious sect, Lee cooperated with them. Although he only reluctantly consented to the plan for a new organization, Chosun Jesu Kyohae (the Korean Jesus Church), it was organized under his name, and he regarded it as his own cross to bear. The ultimate goal of this Jesus Church was deification. “Deification thus means that man’s entire life becomes Jesus’ life. The ultimate goal of this mystical life is to let Jesus live in man’s life and to let man live in Jesus.”
“Yong-Do Lee’s idea of an interchanging spirit-body, which brought forth mixed-adultery…”
“The Hwanghae Presbytery of Presbyterian Church issued a prohibition order under the charge that Yong Do Lee disturbed Jaeryeong Church, corresponded frequently with female believers, prayed with the lights off, offended other Christian workers…”
History of Christianity in Korea
by In Soo Kim, PhD (2011) ISBN 978-89-6562-134-8
Rev. Young Bok Chun writes of his personal experiences at Yong Do Lee meetings:
“I often went to these meetings when I was young. The pastor was an enthusiastic and eloquent preacher and advocated a peculiar interpretation of the Bible. During the meetings he used to roll up a newspaper and go around saying, “Satan, get out! Satan, get out!” while the congregation was praying in a state of ecstatic shaking. This movement advocated the so-called “restoration of the original state” before the fall of Adam and Eve. The congregation was dancing around and crying for the return of Eden. And when the pastor cried, “Adam and Eve were naked before the fall! Take off your clothes!” the men turned to the women and stripped off their clothes, and they danced around naked.”
History and theology of Korean pentecostalism
by Ig-Jin Kim (2003) ISBN 90 239 1536 4
The full text of this book can be downloaded here:
“Today [in 2003], there are about 92 Christian sectarian groups in Korea. The total of followers amounts to 180,000. Almost 35 persons fancy themselves to be the re-incarnated Jesus or Jesus at His second coming and 12 claim to be god. Heretics originate either from rationalism (liberalism) or from mysticism. Rationalistic heretics are generally beyond discussion because they pose as theologians while mystical heretics do become an issue.
… Korean heretics mixed the teaching of the Bible with traditional Eastern thought, and then produced their own structures which are expressed through shamanistic spirituality. Koreans, who were familiar with shamanism, were vulnerable to such syncretism. Having pursued mystical trance without thorough-going repentance and theological discretion, Korean mystical heretics were entrapped in the snare of the cunning dark power. All such problems display a syncretistic religious climate in Korea discussed in previous chapter.
… Here, we are concerned about the view that Yong-Do Yi [Yong-do Lee] (1901-1933) was the root of the Korean heretical movement. Yeong Gwan Park writes, “Mr. Yong-Do Yi fell from insane mysticism to the idea of an interchanging spirit-body, which brought forth mixed-adultery. … Baek-Mun Kim followed his principle … Seon-Myeong Moon [Sun Myung Moon] and Tae-Seon Park [The Olive Tree Movement] imitated Kim’s principle.”80
… We find Yong-Do Lee’s spirituality that can be compared to the spiritual performance of Korean shamans. Thus he kindled the shamanistic spirituality of Koreans, and Korean Christians were enraptured over his ministry for several years.
… They also engaged in the new type of revival movement introduced by Yong-Do Yi. The position of the Methodist Reverend Yong-Do Yi in the Korean Church still remains an unsolved theological problem. However, it is clear that his ministry shook and awakened the Korean churches. In spite of the ministries of Seon-Ju Kil and Ik-Du Kim (1874-1950), and regardless of the evangelization efforts and the increase in the number of believers in general, the Korean Church in the period of 1920-1930 was “like a baby that has to walk through the storm alone.” We have already observed the reasons for this. In a word, the spiritual atmosphere of the Korean churches at that time was seized with stagnation and uneasiness. …
Yong-Do Yi had taken up a special position. When he was a theological student in 1927, he wrote in his diary as follows (February 9):
The Korean Church must have a revival. It does not have prayer, personal evangelization, enthusiasm, love, courage, gratitude, praise, cooperation, Bible study, a truth-seeking heart, service, and family prayer. It has chattering, gossiping, criticism, only thinking of money-gathering, idleness, arguing and conflict, cowardice, fear, complaint, uneasiness, worry, dissolution, greed, selfishness, and anxiety in the family.
Moon and Young-oon Kim both followed Yong-do Lee
Yong-do Lee was known as the father of the Korean mystical heretics.
The roots of Moon’s church in Korea lie with Yong-do Lee. The UC changed when it expanded outside Korea and Japan. In the early days it was partly modelled on the style and teachings of Lee.
"Some scholars understand that both the Olive Tree Church [of Tae-seon Park] and the Uniﬁcation Church came into existence, being influenced by the mystical Holy Spirit movement of Yong-Do Lee."
Young-Kwan Park. Major Cults, vol. I, (Seoul: Christian Literature Mission, 1976). pp. 30-32. 129-31: Young-Kwan Park. Major Cults. vol. II. (Seoul: Christian Literature Mission. 1984). pp. 35-38.
Moon went to the Jesus Church in Seoul, founded by Yong-do Lee, from when he was a teenager. (Michael Breen 'Sun Myung Moon, the early years' page 41. Confirmed by Dr. Ig-Jin Kim and other sources.)
The Korean background of the Unification Church
by Rev. Young Bok CHUN
There is no record of Moon or his family ever being Presbyterians. That claim has never been substantiated by a single piece of evidence. Perhaps it was always just a smokescreen. There is no record of Moon saying he attended a Presbyterian Church. He was married by a Yong-do Lee Church minister, Rev. Lee Ho-bin (Breen page 62). Several former Korean UC members have said that Moon and his family joined Yong-do Lee’s movement in about 1931-32. This was the time when Lee was at the peak of his fame, and evangelizing in the Pyongyang area of Korea, not so far from the Moons.
Yong-do Lee’s emotional sermons appealed to Koreans raised with shamanic beliefs, as was the Moon family. (Breen page 28)
Yong-do Lee 李龍道. His family name can be written as Lee, Yi or Rhee.
Young-oon Kim’s testimony:
As she was leaving America for the last time to return to Korea – she was suffering from cancer – she said: “I am greatly indebted to, first of all, Heavenly Father. No human person came to evangelize me; God Himself called me and revealed to me his deep and lonely heart. I am also eternally indebted to Swedenborg, Rev. Young Do Lee, and our beloved Jesus. All of them led me to Father…”
from page xvi of 40 Years in America, by Michael Inglis and Michael Mickler ISBN 0-910621-99-3
Young-oon Kim was born in 1914. She went to some of Lee’s revival meetings when she was about 18 or 19. Here are her words:
“One day on the way to work, I passed a large sign that spoke of a revival with Reverend Yong Do Rhee to be conducted through the current week. That evening I went to the large Korean Methodist church to hear Reverend Rhee. Though arriving on time, I had to squeeze in because already many hundreds were in attendance. Reverend Rhee was a young Methodist minister who was quite intellectual and also very rich in feeling. He had studied in a liberal Methodist seminary. As he preached I could feel the Holy Spirit through his fiery words. Yes, there was a judgment in his preaching urging everyone to repent. The hearts of everyone present were melted because his stern words were supported by an ardent love of God. Ministers, elders, deacons, doctors, lawyers, business men, teachers – men and women alike – cried in repentance with deep humility.
Reverend Rhee was a humble, meek, reticent man. But once he stood in the pulpit, he became a most eloquent, dynamic, fiery preacher. But there was nothing fanatic in him. Even after the meetings many people stayed and continued praying. During the night some would speak in tongues; some would prophesy; some would go into a trance. Such spiritual phenomena occurred night after night through the whole week of revival. Reverend Rhee was a man of deep prayer, passionate love for Jesus, and compassion for hungry souls. He would give all his pocket money to beggars on the street and then, without bus fare, walk home.
After Reverend Rhee left, the congregation which had tasted of the Holy Spirit craved more. But there was no one who could maintain the high spiritual atmosphere. Gradually Methodist and Presbyterian ministers, not only in my home town but throughout the country, came to charge Reverend Rhee with dividing their churches. Eventually he was condemned as a heretic and forbidden to preach anymore. Thus was he was forced permanently from the pulpit. A year later he passed away at age 33. But today, 50 years after his death, Reverend Yong Do Rhee is highly respected throughout Korean Christendom as an authentic messenger of God. He gave me a lasting image of a true disciple of Christ.
Deeply stirred by Reverend Rhee, I began a nightly prayer vigil at the church where he spoke…”
When she encountered Moon in late 1954, she may have felt something about him that reminded her of her earlier profound experiences with Yong-do Lee.
The Fall story in Genesis 3 was an attack against Sex Rites
The Fall account in Genesis 3 was authored by a Yahwist theologian and it represents a theological and political attack against the Sacred Marriage Rites of Canaanite people.
It was required for the king to go through the Sacred Marriage Rite with the high priestess/queen. Only then did he get his divinity from her and could he be accepted by people as a legitimate king. The high priestess was regarded as an incarnate Goddess and a spouse of the ruling male deity of the theocratic city state. She was wedded to God and had a sexual relationship with him and so she became a divine being in flesh. Their sexual union took place in a chapel called gigunu aloft on the summit of the temple tower. It was only the divinities who had access to the gigunu on the temple tower. No mortal was allowed to be present during this spiritual sexual union between the high priestess/queen and God.
After her wedding with God the high priestess/queen chose an earthly husband among the ruling elite of the city state, a strong military or political leader. The person chosen by the goddess to play the part of her consort had to be somebody of prominence and distinction. Consequently it was natural that in most cases the ruler should be selected. Theoretically he represented the god of the city state as his vice-regent on earth. In their sexual union he got divine elements from the high priestess/queen and became himself a divinity in flesh. The physical sexual union between the high priestess/queen and the ruler took place in the temple on earth of the goddess which was called the e-gipar. The only persons who were permitted to be present were the high priest charged to guard against intrusion, and to testify to the due accomplishment of the ritual acts and Ishara, the goddess who presided over the consummation of marriage.
So the high priestess/queen had an important political position. She was the dominant partner in this relationship and the king was subordinated to the queen. The Sacred Marriage was performed in the temples of various goddesses for many millennia during the Bronze Age. The high priestess/queen had priestesses at the temples as her representatives who united sexually with male worshippers of the Great Goddess. In a similar manner male priests united sexually with female worshippers of God. The divine love of God and Goddess was expressed in a concrete way in temples in these Sacred Marriage Rites. These rites were celebrated joyously all over the Ancient Near East, Middle East, Egypt, India of the pre-Aryan times, and the Aegean for thousands of years. A sexual rite which originated in prehistoric times, and was maintained with only temporary lapses throughout three millennia, could not fail to have a profound influence on religious belief.
House of Heaven, in Uruk
These ancient theocratic city states were originally matrilineal in their societal order. This was based on the notion that the high priestess/queen was the highest authority and the first representative of the Godhead. Matriliny means that the right to ascend the royal throne, titles and property were inherited through the female line, from mother to daughter. If a prince of the royal family wanted to ascend the throne he had no other possibility than to marry his sister who had the rights to the royal throne. This kind of brother-sister marriages were common in matrilineal societies in the Ancient Near and Middle East, for instance in Egypt, Mesopotamia, Hatti (Asia Minor) and Elam (Iran).
Still in the Middle Bronze Age (about 1800-1551 BCE) great goddesses were dominant in the official cult of theocratic city states. But in the Late Bronze Age (about 1550-1250/1150 BCE) radical changes took place both in religion, politics and economics in the Ancient Near and Middle East. Wars, conquests and new Indo-european invaders brought with them new male warrior gods like Baal, Resep and Marduk. They replaced the great naked goddesses in the official cult. Baal, Resep and Marduk were storm gods who fought against the serpent goddess or the dragon who lived in the sea or in the darkness and killed her. These fights between gods and nations were expressed in the myths of different nations. The conquest of Canaan by the Israelites and their storm and thunder god Yahweh belongs to this period of upheavals in the Ancient Near East.
The Hebrews conquered the land of Canaan at the beginning of the Iron Age, about 1250 BCE. There the Hebrews came into contact with Canaanites who practiced Sacred Marriage Rites at their temples. The nomadic Hebrews took over the practice of the Sacred Marriage Rite from their urbanized Canaanite neighbors. Also the Israelite king was invited to share the couch of the Goddess and so these Palestinian shrines were equipped with ‘beds of love’ for the priestesses and their lovers. The Deuteronomic Law in the south endeavoured to suppress both male and female hierodouloi but it was unsuccessful. The sacred prostitution persisted in Israel until after the Exile.
Israelites replaced matrilineal descent right with patrilineal descent and, in order to guarantee paternal authority, demanded female virginity before marriage and absolute fidelity of the wife in marriage. Israelite women who worshipped Goddess Asherah and participated in her Sacred Marriage Rites at Canaanite temples had sexual relationships with men who came to the Goddess’ temple. If the Israelite women became pregnant from these sexual encounters with strangers the paternity of children was unclear and they adopted matrilineal descent right. This could not be accepted by Israelite prophets and they denounced this practice as a sin against Yahweh.
The Hebrews were patriarchal in their societal order and worshipped one male God, Yahweh. The Canaanite matrilineal society and their religion was a major threat to newcomers to the country. The Hebrew prophets and theologians launched a strong attack against the Canaanite religion and their Sacred Marriage Rites. As a part of their political and theological attack against the Canaanite religion, matriliny and the independent female sexuality, a Fall account in Genesis 3 was authored by a Yahwist theologian. This Fall account wanted to make clear to Hebrew people that participating in the Sacred Marriage Rites at Canaanite temples was against the will of Yahweh and brought a divine punishment upon people.
In Canaanite Sacred Marriage Rites an important role was played by sexual relations outside of marriage. In Canaanite sexual rites the benign serpent goddess teaches people the divine powers inherent in the ritual exercise of sex and shows how to make use of them for ruling the cosmos. Even in Israel these ideas were well-known and the struggle to uproot them was long and difficult. The serpent in the Fall story symbolized the Great Goddess Asherah. The serpent was used for many thousand years in the Ancient Near and Middle East, the Aegean and India to represent the Great Goddess in iconography. In Egypt the symbol for the Great Goddesses was so often the serpent that even the word ‘goddess’ was written with a hieroglyphic sign of the serpent. In the story of the Fall, woman and, more specifically, female sexuality became the symbol of human weakness and the source of evil.
Read more in the book:
Kirsti L. Nevalainen, Change of Blood Lineage through Ritual Sex in the Unification Church, pp. 119-136.