My Four and One Half Years with The Lord of The Flies
by Allen Tate Wood
Henry Marshall, Allen Wood and Napier Burson
Sewanee fall 1968
Setting out On The Journey
Washington D.C. Capitol of The ArchAngel Nation
Partisan Political Activity
Meeting the Shogun
At The Feet of "The Master"
Guilt by Accusation
Brainwashing: A glimpse into The Promised Land
(100 Days Training Program at Tarreytown)
Kneeling Before the Master
Imperial Taster for The Royal Consort
Shades of The Grand Inquisitor
(Forgiveness Through The Assumption of Power)
20th Century Protestantism's Captain Ahab
Up From The Abyss
"I pulled the wings off the fly so that it couldn't get away," explained Moon to a rapt audience of several hundred young disciples. He had been telling us about one of his experiences in prison. "I was dreadfully lonely," he said. "My only companion was a fly. I spent hours each day watching it. I watched it clean its legs. I loved it so much that I didn't want it to escape. That is why I pulled it's wings off."
This occasion contrasted with those meetings in which Moon brings his followers to a fever pitch by exhortations and threats. "Are you willing to follow me?"
The response is a deafening "Yes" accompanied by clenched fists raised in unison. Sun Myung Moon, a 76 year old Korean industrialist, owns a munitions factory, a titanium plant, a ginseng refining plant and he is a successful real estate entrepreneur in the U.S. He is also the increasingly well known creator of, and alleged messiah of the Unification Church. Moon founded the church in Seoul, South Korea, in 1954. Today the church claims more than half a million members in 50 countries of which the big three are Japan, the U.S. and Germany. Seventy percent of the membership has been claimed since 1971. In the State of New York in the last few years Moon has purchased over nine million dollars worth of real estate. Under the banner of the Second Coming, Sun Myung Moon commands the allegiance of thousands of young people. They finance and operate a network of front groups whose sole purpose is to catapult Moon into a position of prominence and eventually of absolute power in American politics. By the fall of 1969 the church was acting as a political pressure group in the nation's capitol. From March to December of 1970 I was head of the Unification Church's political arm in the United States(The Freedom Leadership Foundation). On Moon's behalf we sought to defuse the Peace Movement and buttress the hawk position by convincing senators and congressmen that there was substantial grass roots support for a hard line stand in Asia. In 1969 we were just scratching the surface. Today Moon's organization is in a position of vastly increased power and prestige. Through the Freedom Leadership Foundation and it's descendant CAUSA, Moon has won the gratitude and respect of many congressmen and senators, not to mention former presidents Nixon, Reagan and Bush. With The D. C. Stirrers, an inner city track club, Moon parades as a conscientious church leader doing his bit for black teenagers in the nation's capitol. The Little Angels, a Korean Children's Folk Ballet gives him an entree into the entertainment world. Thr ough the person of Jhoon Rhee, director of a mushrooming chain of Korean Karate schools, he enters the world of amateur and professional athletics. Through annual conferences on the "unity of science," he presents himself as a philanthropic patron of the sciences and the humanities. With his burgeoning fortune Moon has the resources to underwrite scientific research and to endow fellowships in Universities. If Moon's movement in America continues unchecked, he will soon be able to directly influence the outcome of elections.
In Korea Moon's is the only "Christian" group that has not suffered at the hands of President Park's brutal suppression of free speech and civil liberties. Moon far from repudiating the Park government's beating and torture of Korean ministers, sponsored and organized a pro government rally in which 1,200,000 people participated (according to a press release given by the Unification Church in Washington.) Borrowing from Moon's historical metaphor(The Divine Principle) this is the equivalent of Jesus holding a pro government demonstration in Jerusalem in support of King Herod. When I was in Korea in October of 1970, Moon told me that when the Unification Church gains control of the South Korean government," every South Korean Embassy in the world will become an expeditionary force for the Kingdom of Heaven.
Setting out On The Journey
My path to the Unification Church began in 1966 when I matriculated at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. I entered college with little concrete notion of what I wanted to do in life. I had rejected the establishment rewards that my secondary education promised. To me the academic challenge at Sewanee was meaningless. Absorbed in a search for values by which I could live, the Peace Movement offered the only channel for my frustrated idealism. From the steps of the burned out ROTC building at the University of the South in the spring of 1968, I was the first student to speak publicly against the War at Sewanee. That summer in New Jersey I worked for the Presidential campaign of Senator Eugene J. McCarthy. In August I went to The National Democratic convention in Chicago as a messenger for the New Jersey delegation. The ferocity of the police riots during the convention destroyed what lingering faith I had in the political process, and I returned to college in the fall bewildered by our nati onal leaders' refusal to respond to the people's wish to end the war in Vietnam.
Unable to concentrate on my studies, I began to explore Eastern religions, specifically the religious synthesism of RamaKrishna. In the spring of 1969 I dropped out of the University of the South and hitchhiked to California, a stop on my way to India. In May I arrived in Berkeley, with a suitcase and a navy duffel bag and a copy of the Gospel According to Rama Krishna. I didn't know it, but it was the end of the line.
Early one afternoon a few days later I met a young man on the steps of the student union on the campus at the University of California at Berkeley. I told him I had no place to stay and no money. He said I could keep my bags at the "Unified Family" a commune several blocks from the campus. He picked up my suitcase. I grabbed my dufflebag, and off we went. At the commune Edwin Ang an Indonesian man in his early forties greeted us at the door. He was the center leader. We sat on cushions in the sparsely f urnished living room while he asked me what I was doing. I replied: "I am searching for God." He asked me to dinner and to a lecture that dealt with the commune's philosophy. Within a week I had heard five lectures on the "Divine Principle." In the last lecture an impassioned young woman spoke to us revealing that Moon was the "Messiah". I already knew this. Earlier I had been looking for a sleeping bag in a closet and there, on a shelf, was a photograph of Sun Myung Moon, a man of 40, kimono-clad. He st ared impassively into my startled eyes. I knew then that my new friends would soon tell me that this man was the Messiah. I joined the Unified Family in Berkeley. It then had thirteen members. In those days there was no Freedom Leadership Foundation, no CAUSA, no political activity and no fundraising. Our communal life consisted of meals, prayer services, singing, witnessing and studying the Divine Principle. At twenty-two I was the fourth oldest member of the group in Berkeley.
In the summer of 1969 the Unification Church in America had no more than 6 or 7 centers with a total membership numbering around 150. During that summer Neil Winterbottom from national headquarters in Washington D.C. visited the commune. He was English, a bout my age, bright and well read. He seemed more dynamic than my compadres in Berkeley.
He suggested that I should come to the headquarters in Washington. I came back East to Princeton N.J., to visit my family, whose skepticism about my new found religion only strengthened my commitment. Their suggestion that this group might be a front for Korean neo-fascism was preposterous. I did not tell them then that I knew Moon was the Messiah. Time was short. The world had to be saved. I had found my work at last.
Capitol of The ArchAngel Nation
I arrived in Washington D.C. for the second FLF conference. Neil Salonen, who in 1975 was Moon's right hand man in the United States, was ordered by Moon in the summer of 1969 to found the Church's anti-Communist movement in this country and to name the or ganization the International Federation for The Extermination of Communism. Salonen set the Freedom Leadership Foundation as the American Branch of the IFEC. On paper the FLF exists as a nonprofit, non partisan educational corporation whose stated objecti ve is to educate American Youth about the dangers of Communism. From its inception FLF was funded by the Unification Church. At this stage in the movement's development, the general membership was politically unsophisticated. The idea of a political arm was new and the purists in the movement who believed that a Church should have nothing to do with politics voiced strong opposition. It was pointed out to them that the church in Japan and Korea carried out extensive anti-Communist political programs and that it was the "master's" express desire to begin political work in the U.S. Thereafter opposition to political work was seen as infidelity to the Master.
In the fall of 1969 FLF launched a public relations campaign against the October 15 and November 15 Vietnam Moratoriums. Unification Church members went full steam into the political operation as well as stepping up the usual witnessing and teaching of the Divine Principle. From this perspective my paid job in the office of Congressman Frank Thompson Jr., democrat from New Jersey, certainly appears odd. "Thompy" was known as an opponent of the war and supported Gene McCarthy for President in 1968. While my "boss" on the Hill was making stronger statements than ever against the War in Vietnam, after hours I was in the streets leafleting for the Master in support of it. In the fall of 1969 and the winter of 1970 Salonen scouted the hard-line anti-Communist groups in D.C. The fruits of his labor were winning the friendship and support of several influential men, including David Martin, the late Senator Dodd's foreign affairs assistant(later a member on the staff of the Senate's Internal Security Committee), Dolph Droge and Sven Kramer, Nixon's special assistants on Vietnam and Charles Stephens, an independently wealthy man in his early thirties, who devoted a good deal of his time to promoting aggressive war policies through ad hoc groups of his own creation on campuses throughout the country. In the fall of 1969 and the spring of 1970 I worked increasingly with FLF.
Partisan Political Activity
In March of 1970 Salonen stepped down from the Presidency of FLF as a result of internecine conflict between himself and W. Farley Jones(then President of the Unification Church in America). Salonen was sent to Colorado to cool off and I was made President of FLF. It was not until a year later that I discovered that my sudden promotion over the heads of my superiors was a result of the leadership's conviction that I could "easily be controlled, and that my clean cut American good looks and the gift of gab made me an ideal front man.
In May Charles Stephens and I with coaching from David Martin, formed a political lobby group called "American Youth for A Just Peace." I called Unification Church members from all over the country to assist in a lobbying campaign in defense of Nixon's invasion of Cambodia and against the McGovern-Hatfield and Cooper-Church bills to limit American involvement. We ran several full page advertisements in the Washington Star and Washington Post, defending military aid to Cambodia, signed with my name as chairman. As a result the South Vietnamese Embassy invited AYJP members on a VIP tour of Vietnam. Eight Unification Church members, Stephens and two of his associates and I flew to Vietnam on August 22, 1970 for a ten day visit crowned by dinner with South Vietnamese President Thieu in the Presidential Palace in Saigon. While we were in Saigon, the Cambodian government invited us to visit Cambodia. We spent five days there. General Lon Nol gave us an audience.
We appeared on CBS national television evening news. Walter Cronkite transported the audience at home in the U.S. to our group digging a fortification ditch around the perimeter of Pnom Phen. Shovel in hand, I begged for more military aid for Cambodia in its struggle against communist aggression. The CBS correspondent described me, I remember, as a spokesman for a group of young Americans who had come to Southeast Asia to "find the facts." The South Vietnamese government paid for our round trip air fare with the explicit understanding that we would use the information we gathered to fight the Peace Movement on U.S. campuses and to generate support for the war. We were given royal treatment. At each stop the red carpet was rolled out. In Cambodia when we disembarked from the plane there were several thousand people waiting at the airport to greet us. A double row of 100 school girls was holding red roses. I felt like Lord Jim.
We left Cambodia and flew to Japan to visit the Japanese Unification Church and to participate in the World Anti-Communist League's fourth annual conference held in Kyoto. That was followed by a mass rally of 25,000 people in Tokyo at the Budokan Sports Palace. The WACL conference was sponsored by the International Federation for Victory Over Communism, the political arm of the Japanese Unification Church. Delegates from 53 nations attended. The American delegate was Senator Strom Thurmond and the honorary chairman of the conference was a prominent Japanese industrialist, Ryoichi Sasakawa.
Meeting the Shogun
Sasakawa was a fascist youth leader in the 30's. The Japanese Unification Church proudly told us that Sasakawa had helped create the Japanese Kamikaze program and that he had been instrumental in the Hitler Tojo pact. Sasakawa was convicted as a class A war criminal at the end of World War II and spent several years in jail. In 1975 he was the president of 13 major Japanese corporations, including the largest ship building company in Japan. He is also head of all Japanese karate schools. Sasakawa, on a visit to the Korean Unification Church, told church members that he was "Mr. Moon's dog."
After the WACL Conference we visited Unification Church centers in Japan. They were awe-inspiring to all of us. Then there were approximately 3,000 dedicated young followers who lived in Church centers for 20 to 100 members all over Japan. Seventy percent of them were involved in full time fundraising by selling flowers on street corners 14 hours a day. The rank and file members lived on a diet of rice and bread crusts. Church centers usually consisted of two large rooms with several smaller rooms adjacent. The large rooms served as separate men's and women's sleeping quarters. Anywhere from 10 to 50 people would sleep on tatami mats on the floor in one of the larger rooms. The center leader had a room to himself. The atmosphere in these centers was one of rigid military discipline and self-denial. All the Japanese martial virtues were harnassed and focussed on the molding of a group psyche whose sole object was to exalt Moon.
At The Feet of "The Master"
After 17 days in Japan, 7 of us flew to Korea to meet Moon and to visit the Korean Unification Church. We were housed in the dormitory of one of Moon's Anti-communist training centers, inside the walls of the Unification Church's air rifle factory, about an hour and a half drive from Seoul. Now after praying in his name for 16 months I was finally to meet the "Master.". From our window in the Anti-Communist training dormitory we saw Moon and his wife approaching across the dry mud field separating the dormitory and the air rifle factory. I, with the others, ran out of the building and raced across the muddy yard to greet them. I saw a dark haired, heavy set man whose receding hairline accentuated an already ample brow. He was wearing a white peasant tunic and dark trousers. He looked as he did in his photographs but older and heavier. His disciplined movements and compact body conveyed a sense of coiled power. Moon shook hands with each of us, smiling broadly. I saw, as he turned sideways in front of me, a large piece of red wax in his right ear. I treasured this excrescence as a sign of his humanity.
During my visit to Korea in October I was given a private audience with Moon. I was ushered into a lounge adjacent to his private quarters above the main church building in Seoul. We sat opposite each other on a plain rug separated by a black lacquer table inlaid with two finely worked mother of pearl dragons. For an hour he instructed me on various matters. The only interruption was the arrival of a messenger, a Korean man in his forties who prostrated himself at Moon's feet before addressing the "Master." Moon said to me," You have a great responsibility. It is your job to initiate the work of winning the academic community in America to my side." Further he said, " The allegiance of the scholarly community is a vital key in my plan to restore the world. Since universities hold the reigns of certification for all the major professions and since universities are the crucible in which young Americans form their basic attitudes and life directions, we must forge a path toward influencing and ultimately controlling American campuses."
Moon held the Japanese Church up to us as an example of the true pattern of serving the Messiah. It was his intention to shame us into greater fervor and zeal, and his tactic was largely successful. The relative impotence of the American church in comparison with the militancy, power and organization of the Japanese Unification Church was a source of humiliation to us all. Moon told us that he could not come to America until we had significantly increased our numbers, demonstrated a higher level of persona l sacrifice, and achieved greater organizational unity. On our return to the U.S. we brought intimations of the future directions of the movement in America.
I returned to the U.S. on October 6, 1970, in time for an early morning press conference with AYJP co-chairman Charles Stephens. Between October and December Stephens and I spoke to civic groups in Washington , issued a bi-monthly tabloid to congressmen and senators, and did all we could to beat the war drum in the nation's capitol. AYJP was staffed entirely by Unification Church members.
In November of 1970 W. Farley Jones and Neil Salonen returned from Korea. There they had been "blessed" in a mass marriage ceremony by Moon. Unification Church doctrine states that marriage is available only to individuals who have attained perfection and that marriage by Moon is the instrument through which fallen man is grafted back onto the tree of life(Moon's revelation omits no detail and leaves nothing to the imagination. Its rigorous orthodoxy even prescribes the exact positions for consummation of the marriage.) On his return to the U.S. W. Farley Jones was informed that I had exhibited a romantic interest in a Unification Church woman. Any attachment of this sort not directly sanctioned by Moon is considered to be a sign of weakness and a manifestation of "satanic possession."
Guilt by Accusation
Without the benefit of facing my accuser or of defending my actions, my guilt was established and tacit sentence was passed. For the time being this condemnation destroyed whatever prestige I had as an up and coming Church l eader, and it made it difficult for me to continue as President of FLF. The Unification Church, lacking a philosophical or sacramental grasp of forgiveness, employs character assassination and guilt through innuendo as powerful tools in enforcing obedience. This incident was not a special case. It is an example of Church policy. Salonen, resurrected from Colorado and "blessed" by Moon, was now fit to reassume the Presidency of FLF.
In January of 1971, W. Farley Jones sent me to the Level Two Training Program as an anti-Communist lecturer. This was the first in a series of national church training programs conducted in Washington D.C.
In December of 1971, Moon came to the U.S. to take direct control of the American Unification Church. All income was collectivized immediately. Outside jobs were dropped. Membership in he Church became a full time occupation whose sole material reward was room and board. At this point Moon established the International One World Crusade, billed as a Christian revival youth movement. It was,in fact, a clever maneuver to recruit more troops for the Unification Church.
Moon assigned Travis Jones to start forming a center at the University of Maryland campus at College Park. In January of 1972 a number of us joined Travis in College Park. There we were left to our own devices. By June we had gained 12 new members, making a total of 21. Elated by this success and driven by the labor of 15 full time fund-raisers, we purchased an estate in Upper Marlboro, Maryland. The previous January we had started a candle factory to raise money to support ourselves and to further the w ork of the Unification Church. From early March of 1972 we delivered candles to church centers up and down the Eastern Seaboard. The churches sold the candles for a 400% profit.
In August the entire Unification Church began to raise 294,000.00 for the down payment on "Belvedere," an $800,000.00 estate in Tarrytown, N.Y. This money was raised by young people selling candles and flowers 16 hours a day on a diet of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and chicken soup~self-denial for the Master~. We, in Uppermarlboro working three shifts, 24 hours a day for 40 days, produced 200,000 candles for the effort. The down payment was made. Moon stated,"Heaven gave me this house." Belvedere served as Moon's private residence until the purchase of a neighboring estate within the year costing $600,000.00
A year later, by March of 1973, we in Upper Marlboro began to have serious doubts about Moon's claim to be the "Messiah" and about his autocratic methods. That month, Travis Jones, who had pioneered the work in Maryland, was arbitrarily relieved of his responsibilities and sent to Belvedere to be reprogrammed. I was made One World Crusade Commander of Maryland, i.e., head of the Church in the state. Travis' reports from New York State were grim.
Brainwashing: A glimpse into The Promised Land
100 Days Training Program at Tarrytown
The training program at Belvedere was aimed at breaking down the individual's identity by subjecting him or her to an emotionally and physically exhausting schedule of repetitive lectures, exercise and door to door soliciting. Trainees were quartered in large rooms in army bunks with little or no privacy. Men were strongly advised to cut their hair short. Mustaches and beards were unthinkable. The entire scenario was an echo of Marine boot camp. The restructuring of the trainee's ego was based on Moon's theology that projects absolute faith in Moon as the essential building block of a "restored" personality. It attacks the validity of the individual conscience. It explicitly denies the individual's capacity to make morally responsible existential decisions. Somewhere along the line in the theology, love of God is translated into blind obedience to Moon and his representatives in the hierarchical chain. One is finally left with submission to Moon as the only answer to fallen man's condition of moral paralysis.
Kneeling Before the Master
During Travis tour at Belvedere and during my visits there throughout the spring and summer our doubts about Moon and the Unification Church were crystallized by a series of macabre demonstrations of Moon's essentially psychopathic relationship with his followers. Shortly after Travis' relocation to Belvedere, Moon spoke at a Sunday church service at National Headquarters at 1611 Upshur St. in Washington D.C. The entire Maryland group was there. As One World Crusade Commander of Maryland I was given a coveted seat on the front row next to Unification Church President Neil Salonen. During his harangues, Moon hit me several times on the shoulder. When he finished his speech, he motioned me forward and asked me to kneel in front of the congregation. I thought he was going to ask me to confess my sins publicly. As I knelt, he kicked me in the hind quarters and then demanded of the audience whether they would follow him if he treated them like this. The immediate response was a deafening "yes" with clenched fists raised toward the ceiling.
Travis told me of a similar incident that took place while he was at Belvedere. In front of the entire training group of 70 young converts Moon hit Young Whi Kim, president of the Korean Unification Church, across the buttocks with a wooden cane with such force that the cane snapped in half. At Belvedere Moon also directly supervised the "War Games" in which One World Crusade Commanders and State Representatives took part in a massive variant of tug of war. Two groups of 50 would try to drag each other bodily across a certain line and back 40 yards to "prison camp.". Moon stood on the tip of a boulder in the path of the line. On a signal from Moon the teams would charge across the line and engage in a no holds barred battle to subdue and capture their adversaries.
Travis saw one guy with a broken arm, somebody else with a separated collarbone, and bloody noses were on all sides. Moon conducts these games between different nationality groups to stimulate competition and to reinforce a sense of pride in victory and shame in defeat. I remember a day at Belvedere in May of 1973 during a leadership conference. Moon had just finished a short speech and he then asked for general questions. I rose to my feet to address him. I said, " as a One World Crusade Commander, I frequently encounter the problem of homosexuality among our men." I asked him if there was anything we could do to help these people. He replied, "Tell them that if it really becomes a problem to cut it off, barbecue it, put it in a shoe box and send it to me." The audience roared with laughter.
The summer of 1973 we had three centers in Maryland: one in UpperMarlboro, one in College Park and One in Towson, a suburb of Baltimore. We had approximately 35 members. In the late summer we began preparation for Moon's Day of Hope speaking tour that opened in Baltimore in the first week of October. We plastered the city with billboards. We flew a plane over the Columbus day parade. We arranged a meeting for Moon with Sol Orlinsky, president of Baltimore's city council. We rented the Lyric theater for three days for his speeches. With the help of two international bus teams composed of Unification Church members from Japan, England, Germany, France and Holland, we sold thousands of tickets to his speeches. The evening of October 6 we held a ceremonial dinner at the Baltimore Hilton. Political, business and social leaders attended the dinner. Telegrams of encouragement and support were received and read at the dinner from Cardinal Shehan and from Theodore Roosevelt McKeldin, former Mayor of Baltimore and former governor of the State of Maryland respectively. All our fanfare was of little avail. Not more than 350 people attended Moon's lectures at the Lyric Theater.
Imperial Taster for The Royal Consort
At the dinner I and ranking members of the palace guard were armed with concealed Billy Clubs to protect Mr. Moon. I was seated at the head table to the left of Mrs. Moon. I was instructed to switch all my servings of food with hers. In addition to my other titles, I had at last been raised to the exalted position of imperial taster for the royal consort.
Meanwhile Travis Jones had been sent to Louisiana to be the One World Crusade Commander there and to prepare for the Dayof Hope in New Orleans. A group of us from Uppermarlboro visited Travis in New Orleans shortly after Moon's appearances. Jones was distraught by the direction of events in the church. We concurred in his disillusionment.
We returned to Upper Marlboro at the end of November to find "Doctor," Joseph Sheftick, an unlicensed chiropractor, whose academic title was awarded to him by Moon, had been sent to Uppermarlboro to diagnose the situation and to see if an adjustment was needed. Sheftick felt that the prognosis was good, provided that the four leaders at Upper Marlboro were removed. He assured Moon that the rank and file would remain faithful.
In the days that followed, 26 Church members of our group in Maryland repudiated Moon and his teachings. In mid December, Moon's full page newspaper advertisements appeared in the New York Times and other major papers exhorting the American people to forgive President Nixon before an indictment had been issued or guilt established. That clinched our decision to leave the Church. Early in the fall Moon had rejected the idea of publicly supporting President Nixon; but, during a two week visit to Japan and Korea he had second thoughts. On his return to the U.S. he publicly announced that God had instructed him to forgive President Nixon.
Shades of The Grand Inquisitor
Forgiveness Through The Assumption of Power
We wrote Moon a letter explaining why we could no longer be a part of his church. Moon responded to us through Colonel Bo Hi Pak, President of the Korean Cultural and Freedom Foundation. He invited me and other leaders in Maryland to come to Belvedere for a vacation to be followed by retraining, after which we were to be awarded "positions of greater power and authority." We refused. It was an extremely difficult time for all of us. Some returned to school, some to their families. Approximately 12 who left with us are today living and working with a pacifist Christian Community.
It was the unanimous decision of all three centers to sell all real estate and to liquidate all assets and to give the proceeds to bona fide Christian Charities. Unfortunately we were unable to do this, because the Unification Church brought suite against us. They claimed that we had stolen the land and properties from them. In a pre trial hearing the judge threw the case out of court. He said that he seemed to remember something in the Bible prohibitting Christians from suing one another or anyone else, for that matter. Mr. Moon is apparently unswayed by this tradition for law suites seem to figure prominently in his plan to restore the world.
It is now 27 years since I left the Unification Church. Time and distance have allowed me the opportunity of scrutinizing and reflecting on my time with Moon. Literature and mythology provide the parameters within which I attempt to assimilate and resolve the grotesque variables of this dark Odyssey. In literature and myth I find the type of myself in the young innocent, who is proud, blind, self-righteous and idealistic. I also find the type of Moon, the zealous Promethean whose paranoid delusions of grandeur become the altar upon which thousands of souls are sacrificially slaughtered along the road to Xanadu.
20th Century Protestantism's Captain Ahab
Often I think of my years in service to Moon as an example, an instance of Ishmael's journey with Captain Ahab on board the Pequod in search of the White Whale. To me, Moon is twentieth century Protestantism's Captain Ahab, a titan whose flailing hubris filled fists would have us take vengeance in our own hands and send us all off after the white whale. In mythology, this experience lends itself to analogies with the Hero's journey into the Underworld, where he must overcome or outwit the forces of darkness to earn the right to reenter the world of light.
Unification Church doctrine states that those who follow Moon are the chosen. In that light they see themselves not so much as the servants of mankind, but rather as the architects of history. Men who have been called out of the anonymous masses to assist the messiah in laying the groundwork for the millennium. They believe that as the chosen they are above the law. Like Raskolnikov in Dostoievski's Crime and Punishment, they have arrived at the humbling and exalting conclusion that they are more valuable to God, to history and to the future than other people.
History is teeming with people whose desire for reform has led them to accept the superman philosophy of men like Hitler and Moon. The fruits of this variety of psychological and political titanism are always catastrophic. Moon is an unfortunate and formidable by product of the West's inability to live within its Judeo-Christian traditions.
In the name of the Second Coming and using the authority of Christian apocalyptic prophecy, Moon promises to restore the world to a state of peace and harmony essentially through the use of power. Jesus repudiated the use of force. Moon, who claims to fulfill the promises of Christianity, is resurrecting divine kingship on an Egyptian scale. He preaches genetic selection, and he practices sympathetic magic.
Up From The Abyss
The daylight of this world to which I have returned after my sojourn in the messianic abyss is not always clear or warm, but I rejoice in it, because I know that whatever path I take, my conscience will never be the prisoner or possession of another man.