Opening Plenary, Chairman's Address
Rev. Dr. Chung Hwan Kwak, Chairman IIFWP and IIPC|
October 3, 2004
[Read by Dr. Thomas Walsh]
Distinguished leaders from more than 120 nations around the world. Ambassadors for Peace. Ladies and gentlemen.
On behalf of the Founder?s of the Interreligious and International Federation for World Peace and the Interreligious and International Peace Council, Rev. and Mrs. Sun Myung Moon, I am honored to welcome you to this International Leadership Convocation that focuses on the theme, ?Leadership and Good Governance for our Global Family: Establishing a World Culture of Heart and Lasting Peace.?
On this day, one year ago, more than 1500 international delegates gathered in New York for the Inaugural Assembly of the Interreligious and International Peace Council, established to provide a model of good global governance that embodies the core principles and best practices of the IIFWP. Therefore, it is indeed appropriate that, on this anniversary, we give full attention to the topic of leadership and good governance.
In this Chairman?s Address I want to provide an overview of the IIFWP?s vision of leadership and good governance as a background and basis for our deliberations over the next few days. Our purpose here is to explore ways in which the IIFWP and the Peace Council can be more effective instruments for peace worldwide. We are all profoundly aware of the suffering that affects the lives of people the world over, due to war, conflict, poverty, disease, injustices and crime. We have gathered because we believe we can make a difference and can change this world.
The desire for peace is universal, but its attainment is not simple. What are the root obstacles to peace? What is the best methodology and what are the best practices that, when applied, will lead us to peace? IIFWP exists to provide answers to these questions.
Rev. Moon launched the IIFWP in 1999. Its emergence was the outgrowth of a plan he had been cultivating for decades. IIFWP came as a culminating point for a wide range of programs and organizations he had founded and guided, going back to 1945.
The core purpose of the IIFWP is to create a world culture of heart and a world of lasting peace, drawing upon the full participation, investment and commitment of a wide range of stakeholders, from the grass roots level to the centers of political, economic, religious and cultural power.
When we consider the vision of leadership and good governance that characterizes the IIFWP, and the IIPC, we can identify the core features.
First, let us consider leadership.
The IIFWP vision of leadership is based on three concepts: true parent, true teacher and true owner.
A true parent leader is one whose heart for the world is like the heart of a loving father or mother toward their children. This is a heart of unconditional love, and a heart that is willing to sacrifice for the sake of the children and for the sake of the family. The primary virtue required of the true parent is true love, that is, a desire and capacity to live for the sake of others. A parent invests continually and unconditionally, time and time again.
A true teacher leader is one who is committed to truth and who obeys the guidance of the conscience. A true teacher does not use words and ideas as the servant of selfish interests or desires, but rather speaks and takes action based on truths that are universal and which go beyond the interests of any given person, race, religion, nationality, business or culture. The primary virtues required of the true teacher are wisdom and courage, the ability to discern the truth of the conscience and the internal power to act on that truth.
A true owner is a leader who understands ownership in the sense of taking responsibility. A true owner does not call on the landlord to fix a problem, but initiates action to heal, restore, fix or solve a problem. A true owner does not seek or covet material things for selfish reasons, but for the sake of others, the family, the society, the nation and the world. The primary virtue of the true owner is self-control or temperance, the ability to control one?s own appetites and desires, and generosity, the capacity and desire to share one?s blessings with others.
Becoming a true parent, true teacher, and true owner leader does not happen easily or automatically. Rather, the capacity to become such a leader requires training, sacrifice, even suffering in the effort to develop the kind of virtues, character and wisdom so basic to good leadership. Good leaders are first and foremost good persons, and good spouses.
Sometimes Rev. Moon will speak to us and say, ?Do you want to be a great leader and govern in a way to save the nation or even the world.? And, enthusiastically, many respond, ?Yes.? Then Rev. Moon will shake his finger and say, ?Before you can save the nation or the world, you must first save yourself, and become a true person.? He has also often said, ?How can you claim to love God, the world, or the nation, when you have failed to truly love your own spouse with an absolute love.?
Good leadership requires not only knowledge, experience, a strong intellect, and well-developed organizational and social skills. It requires most of all, good character with attributes such as a loving heart, honesty, loyalty, compassion, self-control, courage, wisdom and good judgment. Leadership based on only on ambition, cleverness, social skills, intellect, experience, etc., but lacking in character will always give way to corruption. Character is the foundation of perception and the interpretation of the world and those around us. In this way it affects decision-making and actions.
The most important trait of a good leader is true love, the ability to live for the sake of others. The capacity for true love has its foundation in the family, in the love we receive from our parents, the relationships we develop with our siblings, and the gradual expansion of our heart through the experiences of marriage and parenthood.
Leadership is not fundamentally about charisma, popularity, or boldness, though it can sometimes be enhanced by these qualities. It is fundamentally about taking responsibility and living for the sake of others.
A leader, who is to bring peace or contribute to peace, must first be a person of peace, a person with harmony of mind and body, a person who lives according conscience, with integrity and with a serving mind. A peacemaker is one who has gone through a revolution of heart.
Grounded in this vision of leadership we can understand the IIFWP concept of good governance. Governance describes a human process or system for organizing or ordering life so that problems can be solved and there can be harmony, cooperation and prosperity. We can say that good governance contributes to peace.
The concept of governance applies to any realm of human relationships, from the family, to voluntary associations, corporations, religious institutions, and the nation. Good governance seeks to fulfill the mission in any given realm, and to bring about peace.
Good governance is centered on a good purpose. In particular, the purpose should not be self-centered, but should be oriented toward both the well being of the whole community.
For example, a business can be managed in such a way as to create profit, but its primary objective should be to benefit the employees, the customers and the wider community. Also, a religion can seek to communicate its truth and even to encourage others to embrace that truth, but it should not do so to the detriment of followers of other religions.
As in a family, governance should not bring advantage to one while bringing disadvantage to another. Thus, governance should never be exclusively self-centered. This applies to religions, nations, races, businesses and families.
Governance grounded in true parent leadership is one that is analogous to the governance of a good family. A good family is one characterized by respectful, cooperative partnerships. Husband and wife serve each other, and parents and children serve each other.
According to God?s original ideal, Adam and Eve would have perfected their love and formed the first human family centered on God?s love. This ideal family would have formed natural relationships of true love, cooperation, harmony and prosperity. This model would have been extended through multiplication. Very naturally, the true love system of governance with an ideal family would have become the basis for governance in the wider society, nation and world.
Headwing Governance: Two Become One
The concept of ?headwing? governance was developed by Father Moon to provide a vision of governance that is closer to God?s original ideal of the family. It stands in contrast to the polarization of left wing and right wing approaches to governance. In some ways, conflict between left wing and right wing approaches to governance is like the conflict in a disunited family.
A headwing approach always seeks to unify and harmonize that which is divided. But, more fundamental than headwing theory, is the ideal of true love. If our early human ancestors had established God?s ideal of the family, then true love would have formed the basis of all relationships. True love would have been at the center of all relationships, all subject and object partners. Thus, a cooperative, loving, caring system of governance would have emerged, very naturally.
IFWP?s philosophy of governance for peace is rooted in three core, moral principles:
The Peace UN
- A true leader or true parent must maintain strict standards of purity and fidelity. That is, the love, life and lineage made sacred through marriage should never be violated. The proper governance of ones sexual organ, which is the key to maintaining the integrity of the family, is the foundation of good governance.
- A true leader and true teacher must care for all persons within his or her realm of governance as a loving parent would care for his or her children. That is, the full value, integrity, and aspirations of all human beings must be respected. The rights of any person should never be violated. The heart of others should never be hurt by careless actions.
- A true leader or a true owner never misuses public money or material things, but always serves the well being of the whole.
When we launched the IIPC one year ago, Rev. Moon wanted to apply the methodology of true love and headwing philosophy, establishing an institution characterized by true love leadership and good governance. Just as he coined the term ?headwing? he also coined the term, ?Peace UN.? This term refers to an institution of global governance, like the UN, but which fully manifests the ideals outlined above.
We live at a time when established structures are being challenged and called to renewal and transformation. This applies to the United Nations, to nation states themselves, and to religion. IIFWP is transnational, and in an age of the internet, national borders are less important. More and more, national sovereignty is giving way to regional alliances such as the EU, the AU, ASEAN, NATO, NAFTA, CARICOM, etc. This is consistent with a growing trend for unification and cooperation.
IIFWP is trans-religious. While upholding religious values, and while respecting the integrity and truth of each great religion, IIFWP moves trans-religiously, beyond the parameters set by the traditional religions. Religions, even more than governments, should work together cooperatively and lovingly.
In its vision of governance, as envisioned with the ?Peace UN,? IIFWP will include representatives of religions, civil society, governments, inter-governmental organizations, etc. However, it will seek to be a trans-national, trans-religious voice of conscience and a provider of service to the world. The Peace Council will be a network of Ambassadors for Peace who form councils at the global, regional, national and local levels.
Initially, the global, regional and national level Peace Councils will take up specific projects to address critical global, regional or national level problems. For example, we may focus on HIV/AIDS prevention in Africa, conflict resolution and reconciliation in the Middle East or North East Asia, poverty eradication within small island states, etc.
IIFWP?s strength lies in its moral and spiritual vision, and in its power to transform lives, a power rooted in the strength of its teachings. Father Moon always sees things multi-dimensionally, in levels or stages, from the most internal and spiritual to the most external and material. He sees history and human affairs not only in terms of social, political, psychological, or economic developments, but in terms of God?s providence and the spiritual principles that guide that providence.
In this light, the practice and experience of reconciliation and unification are powerful forces. While human history has been dominated by forces of conflict, resentment, and dialectical struggle, that era of conflict is now coming to an end. An era of peace, a peace kingdom is at hand. Unifiers will rise, and barrier-makers will decline. True love practices will bear fruit. Those who sow seeds of resentment, retaliation and complaint, will decline.
In your deliberations over the next few days I hope you will consider these words, and include these guidelines in your discussion. I firmly believe a new age is dawning. It cannot be stopped. And, we are playing a key role in this process. As we all develop an IIFWP culture of heart, and as we apply the ideals of leadership and good governance discussed above, this age will emerge more quickly and surely.
Please do not hesitate or hold back. Let us work together. We can change this world. We can make the world new, and put the history of suffering, injustice, violation, poverty, desecration of the earth, corruption, and all evils behind us. The ideals which the saints and sages of history have lived and died for are now being realized.
Thank you for your attention. God bless you and your families.
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