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London Forum Details UPF’s Vision, Philosophy and Projects

London, United Kingdom – At its headquarters in London, UPF-UK hosted a program outlining the UPF vision and its underlying philosophy on April 27, 2024. Dr. David Hanna and Dr. David Earle elucidated the Principles of Peace in four presentations.

The program commenced with a video introduction to UPF's global activities, its mission to foster peace and unity between nations and religions, and its network of over 100,000 peace ambassadors worldwide. It included global peace initiatives, interfaith rallies, and marriage blessings, emphasizing the importance of relationships, family, and ethical decision-making.

Alongside the seminar, UPF presented an art exhibition featuring the work of Mr. P. Singh, Ms. Sangita Swechacha, and their artist daughter Rhoslyn, with a portion of the proceeds going to charity. Ms. Swechacha introduced “Rose's Odyssey,” a collection of short stories from a Nepali background that beautifully capture the importance of love, personal growth, and the consequences of wrong actions.

Presentations on Peace, Conflict and Reconciliation

In the first presentation, “Universal Values as a Foundation for Peace” (video link), Dr. Hanna delved into the intrinsic connection between the human heart and love, which foster creativity and meaning in life. He explored the interplay between individuals and their environment, the significance of mutual respect and dialogue in conflict resolution, as well as the foundational importance of family in personal and societal growth.

In "The Root Causes of Conflict” (video link), Dr. Hanna stressed the need to cultivate a balanced worldview prioritizing the common good. He examined the pitfalls of ideologies like communism and explored the concept of the conflicted self, shedding light on humanity's perpetual struggle between morality and malevolence. He also touched on the moral dimensions of religious narratives, particularly concerning sexuality and ethical conduct.

In the session titled "Bringing Peace and Reconciliation” (video link)," Dr. Hanna illuminated key principles drawing from timeless narratives like the tales of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, and the family of Abraham. He underscored the imperative of individual contributions to societal peace, and the role of religion as a potent force for peace, particularly in its capacity for restoration. He discussed the transformative potential of spiritual practices, cautioning against unsustainable extremes while advocating for the power of love and forgiveness in breaking cycles of abuse. The overarching vision was of a unified world guided by principles of empathy, reconciliation, and the transcendence of animosity.

Following these sessions, participants engaged in reflective small-group discussions, delving into the various themes presented.

UPF’s Global Peace Efforts

In the final presentation, "Father Moon's Life and UPF's Global Peace Efforts – The UPF Touch” ( video link), Dr. David Earle eloquently depicted the extraordinary life and endeavors of Rev. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon.

Dr. Earle spoke of Rev. Moon’s harrowing experiences, including imprisonment during the Japanese occupation of Korea and under communist rule in North Korea. Despite enduring torture and narrowly escaping execution, Rev. Moon emerged resolute, spearheading global peace initiatives and fostering interfaith dialogue.

Dr. Earle recounted poignant anecdotes of Rev. Moon's engagements with world leaders such as former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev and former North Korean President Kim Il-Sung, advocating for religious freedom and peaceful Korean reunification. He also highlighted Mother Moon’s tireless efforts in organizing interfaith peace rallies and blessings across the globe.

The presentation highlighted UPF's collaborations with ministries, universities, and the United Nations, and underscored its commitment to implementing peace education curricula worldwide. It included UPF's ongoing projects, such as collaborating with former Albanian President Alfred Moisu to promote peace on the Balkan Peninsula and introducing a character education curriculum in Dakar, Senegal.

The event concluded with the presentation of ambassador for peace certificates to Ms. Prachi Desai and Ms. Catherine Tuitt, two individuals who have made significant contributions to peace and improving communities through their sacrifice and service over many years.


By Robin Marsh, Secretary General, UPF-United Kingdom April 27, 2024


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