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S. Moon: Address to World Summit 2020

Address to World Summit 2020, Seoul, Korea, February 3-8, 2020


Distinguished Scientists, Scholars and Researchers participating in the 26th International Conference on the Unity of the Sciences (ICUS) here in Seoul, Korea, for the World Summit 2020: We offer you our sincerest welcome!

I am deeply honored to address you today on behalf of my parents, and I am grateful that you have made a long, arduous, and unnerving journey to the East in spite of current dangers. Your resolute attendance is a courageous testament to your character, along with thousands of global leaders and experts from all fields of endeavor who are committed to serving humanity in order to bring about world peace! Let us give a gallant round of applause to everyone gathered here today!

World Summit 2020 is the culmination of not only my Father’s eminent legacy and profound works over his 92 years on this earth, serving God and humanity; it is also the culmination of my Mother’s equally visionary work that is expanding day by day, bringing higher enlightenment, mutual prosperity and offering substantive solutions to suffering around the globe.

Although my beloved Father passed away eight years ago, there is not a day that goes by that my Mother and the worldwide organizations they established, including of course ICUS and the organizations of World Summit 2020, are not working to create a better world. By convening leaders from all fields in this summit, she has created a multi-sectoral approach to peace and is moving forward pragmatically and wholeheartedly to create a world of harmonious interdependence and mutual prosperity, guided by universal values, to achieve a world of peace in which we all live together as one family under God.  

As human beings, we all stand on common ground and share core ideals and values. We all want a world of peace. Yet, unfortunately, we live in a world that often manifests the polar opposite of our heartfelt hopes. Humanity and creation are in crisis everywhere we look.

No crisis is more real and factual than what is happening to our Earth, our shared habitat and our only current home. I bring up the Earth because it is the womb of all life on this planet, the nourisher, the nurturer, and ultimate giver of life. But what is happening to our Earth?  Is it being taken care of responsibly? No, we are destroying our planet and destroying each other.

Whether one is an esteemed scientist or a courageous youth activist like Greta Thunberg, we are all called to address this crisis, pointing out that climate change poses a threat to our very existence.

The threat of climate change looms over every man, woman, and child with no exception. As the collective web of life and the myriad of species and natural resources on earth are disappearing at an alarming rate, a select few profit, pillage, and pollute, and the rest of creation is left to suffer the consequences. The balance of all life teeters on a dangerous ledge due to ignorant human activity.

We see this happening all around us as all the elements to sustain life are polluted, causing human harm and loss due to increased chronic illnesses, starvation, malnutrition, and new resistant diseases. We are displaced by habitat and agricultural loss due to devastating floods, storms, drought, fires, and extreme weather events. All these factors combined pose an existential threat to all life on Earth. All facets of life are interconnected.

The world’s economy vacillates as what was once secure is evermore insecure, giving rise to desperation and mayhem, protest and unrest, violence and suicides, conflicts and wars, mass migration, refugee crises, and political polarization at the domestic and international levels, threatening past global alliances and cooperative interdependence. As nationalism, political divisiveness, religious clashes, cultural, racial, and social inequalities fracture our communities, we spiral out in a dangerous cycle, creating more global unrest. As survival and self-preservation grow and as the ethics of service to others and cooperation decline, we are dangerously becoming a desperate global family at war with each other. Where, then, is the solution? It is in this room. It is all of you.

This is why I applaud everyone in this conference. Each and every one of you and your great works are the keystones to peace and the potential unified solutions to all of these sad realities. Where, at the deepest level, there is a crisis of the human heart and conscience, you all risked your own safety to serve, educate and enact real change for the sake of all humanity and creation.

My Father in his autobiography, A Peace-Loving Global Citizen, wrote that the true value of all life and the preciousness of this earth can be sustained only by people with a higher consciousness who have a sincere heart of true love for all life:

Human selfishness is destroying nature. Competition for the shortest route to economic success is the main reason that the earth’s environment has been damaged. We cannot allow the earth to be damaged any further. Religious (and scientific) people must lead the way in the effort to save nature. Nature is God’s creation and His gift to humankind. We must work quickly to awaken people to the preciousness of nature and the urgent need to restore it to the rich and free state it enjoyed at the time of Creation. The best environmental movement, however, is the one that spreads love. The shortcut to protecting nature is to develop a heart that loves nature. We must be able to shed a tear at the sight of even a blade of grass that we see as we walk along the road. We must be able to grab hold of a tree and weep. We must understand that God’s breath is hidden inside a single boulder or a single gust of wind. To care for and love the environment is to love God. We must be able to see each creature created by God as an object of our love. With our spiritual eyes opened we could see that a single dandelion by the roadside in more valuable than the gold crown of kings.

What beautiful words!

It is my sincere hope that your deliberations go well during this important conference and that we can bring these values and words into reality through harmonious action. Nothing is more important than to find solutions to our environmental, human security crisis. We can accomplish this noble goal only by uniting together, as scientists, and as brothers and sisters, who seek holistic, scientific, spiritual, and educational practices to divert the trajectory of current unsustainable practices that plague our existence. When we lose our universal humanity and spirituality, the sad and tragic issues listed above will escalate.

That is why my parents, especially my amazing Mother Dr. Hak Ja Han, has invested everything to address the environmental crisis that confronts us all today. She has been at the forefront, creating the International Summit Council for Peace, reviving ICUS, and convening the World Summit, emphasizing the importance of finding solutions to this crisis: solutions that are both internal and external in nature. She knows that the search for practical solutions through scientific, academic, and technological innovation, as well as through prudent and wise government policies and ultimately an internal awaking of a higher consciousness, are the only solutions to all the crises we see today.

Respect for this natural world, this universe and everything that surrounds us derive from the same origin, our Creator. She has been urging us always to seek fundamental solutions to the global environmental issues; that is, we must pursue the path of science, and at the same time the path of spirituality and universal ethics and wisdom.

God, who is the origin of love, created humankind in order to share and multiply love. We were even created to be partners and co-creators with God. If we grow in wisdom and in love—true love, that is—we will come to treat the natural world with the same loving heart that God has toward this world. We will be life-givers who resemble God; in this respect, we would become worthy to become the true stewards of nature.

We would then help bring about a great harmony among the Creator, humankind, and nature, an organic and integral unity. In this way we are able to protect, maintain and restore the natural world, creating a sustainable balance between human beings and our wider environment.

Some have argued that religion is a source of our problem, that by positing the existence of a supreme spiritual God, religious people do not respect the material world. Others point their finger at science, or a scientific mentality that does not respect the sacred divinity of all creation. However, it is not religion nor science that is the root cause of our environmental crisis. It is the lack of harmony and cooperation between the two.

Science is a great instrument that can liberate and emancipate, improving our knowledge and improving our lives. Religion enlightens us to the divine universal value of loving and living for the sake of all life and creation. Only when there is unity in science and spirituality can we realize our true internal and external potential for peace.

That is why, united together, we must overcome this environmental crisis. It affects not only those of us alive today but future generations as well. That is why your work, your research, your publications and our deliberations here at ICUS are so important. We are part of a global team of peacebuilders, working to make this world a better place and to save each other from disaster. This is the reason why we are all here today.

The themes of World Summit 2020 are interdependence, mutual prosperity and universal values. I believe these themes are important as we pursue solutions to the environment crisis. Please consider these points during your deliberations. We are all interconnected.

What happens in China, as we see with the coronavirus, affects the entire planet: not only the safety and health of the world’s population, but also the economy and the environment. The issues of food production, procurement, and storage that are affected by rapid environmental changes must be resolved through cooperation among all sectors and in all parts of the world. We must all cooperate with each other because we are “one family under God” and this planet is our only home. As my Father said, only love can bring us all together, and only God can unify us all. Home is where God’s heart is and where the entire human family and creation are loved, nurtured and cherished.

Let this loving ideal be our lasting legacy!

Thank you. Namaste.



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