Carolyn Handschin-Moser is Vice-President of Women’s Federation for World Peace International and Director of the WFWPI Office for United Nations Relations globally. She is currently the President of the NGO Committee on the Status of Women at the United Nations in Geneva ( where she leads and contributes to committees and working groups on peace and security, education, sustainable development and the environment, protection of the family, women in power—all with a human rights linkage.A new program of her office is a Human Rights Internship for Masters students to prepare academic papers of an advocative style that are submitted to the UN entities to support their work from a “local knowledge” perspective.

  • In Larger Freedome for a Safer World: A Unificationist Evaluation of Human Security

    Journal of Unification Studies Vol. 23, 2022 - Pages 1-36

    Peace studies are gaining ground worldwide. Yet, these studies often stop at conflict resolution or conflict transformation. We need more “positive peace studies.” We keep viewing peace as pacification, the return of tranquility after a period of conflict. Heraclitus, the founder of dialectics said that “Polemos (war) is both the king and father of all.” We still live in a culture of polemology, where peace is only a truce between two wars. The term “irenology”[1] does exist, but is rarely used.

    Why? Because a worldview where Irene would be seen as the queen and mother of all would look pale intellectually, culturally, aesthetically. Throughout history, the culture of war has mobilized ardent passions and heroic sacrifices. War is thrilling; peace looks dull. In A King without Distraction, the French novelist Jean Giono suggested that l’ennui (boredom) fosters all bullying, harassment, violence and crime. Jeffrey Ventola even speaks about the beauty of violence.[2] In order to prevail, the culture of peace should mobilize a greater spiritual energy.

    Part I: The Genesis of Human Security

    Peace is more than the absence of war, we say. But what should be present when war is absent? The revolution of Satyagraha, launched by Gandhi, went far beyond the Home Rule movement which had blossomed in India in 1916-1918 and which was to end the British colonial occupation. Satyagrahaliterally means that truth has an element of love and an element of energy within itself. For Gandhi, passive resistance was missing these points.

    Truth (satya) implies love, and firmness (agraha) engenders and therefore serves as a synonym for force. I thus began to call the Indian movement Satyagraha, i.e., the Force which is born of Truth and Love, and gave up the use of the phrase “passive resistance” in connection with it.[3]

    Gandhi wanted to make Indians the actors of their own destiny, free to build a peaceful and good society. For him, education to citizenship included a mystical element. We are social beings prompted to respect the law, but more fundamentally we are spiritual beings, and our souls urge us to practice selfless love in our daily life.

    I would like to see India free and strong so that she may offer herself as a willing, pure sacrifice for the betterment of the world. The self, being pure, sacrifices himself for the family, the latter for the village, the village for the district, the district for the province, the province for the nation, the nation for all.[4]

    In February 1947, Gandhi added, “I want Khudai raj, which is the same thing as the Kingdom of God on earth.” For Gandhi, the willing and pure sacrifice of the individual for the betterment of the world would guarantee the harmony between self-rule on the one hand, and security within and without on the other hand. This concord, he thought, is noble, thrilling, revolutionary, and can transform the world.

    Gandhi’s exhortations offer a possible roadmap for innovative peace and human security studies in the 21st century. The present essay will discuss what human security is, why, and how it has appeared. We shall also question some of its ambiguities. We shall draw into the theoretical framework of Unificationism and the philosophy of peace of Reverend Sun Myung Moon. Gandhi’s practical application of Satyagraha will also be helpful. Connecting freedom and security, Gandhi stressed,

    When India becomes self-supporting, self-reliant, and proof against temptations and exploitation, she will cease to be the object of greedy attraction for any power in the West or the East, and will then feel secure without having to carry the burden of expensive armament. Her internal economy will be India’s strongest bulwark against aggression.[5]

    For Gandhi, violence stems from wrong desires and blindness. Stopping the fight is only the first step. Then, yesterday’s foes may become tomorrow’s partners. A messianic vision of history was guiding Gandhi. We often chant “Study war no more,” but study what, then? Indeed, we accumulate valuable knowledge to gradually change from a very violent world to a less violent world, and ultimately to a world with zero violence. But what stands above the zero? Unificationism states that Cain and Abel should reconcile and settle their disputes, then live together. In practice, most Unificationists still seek a roadmap for a feasible universal concord. The Unificationist community, not unlike most religious organizations, believes in some form of utopian universal concord. A proper understanding of human security may be an eye-opener to arrive at something more concrete.

    Indeed, encyclopedias keep defining peace negatively, as an absence of trouble or conflict, or as a process of reconciliation, contrition, after a period of attrition. It is logical, because peace derives from the Latin word pax, meaning that law and order are restored after a violent conflict. The Pax Romana was the security and protection offered by Rome to diverse populations which had been conquered. Romans believed that they were bringing civilization, a higher level of administration and development and that people would finally prefer the protection of their empire. Pax means that the fighting is over. But it does not mean that we are living in an organic oneness of heart and vision.

    We sometimes call for a culture of peace, but do we believe in a culture of concord, fraternity and communion of all? We rarely do so, because the thought of conflict is more familiar to our culture.

    Unificationist eschatology sees the ideal world as Cheon Il Guk, the nation of cosmic peace and unity. More than a world free from discord and antagonism, it is a world where protagonists are free for a God-centered concord. As the Holy Community of Heavenly Parent[6] says in the fourth paragraph of its Family Pledge, “Our family, the owner of Cheon Il Guk, pledges to build the universal family encompassing heaven and earth, which is the Heavenly Parent’s ideal of creation, and perfect the world of freedom, peace, unity and happiness, by centering on true love.”[7]

    Here, the pursuit of freedom and happiness takes place in a world of peace and unity. Whereas freedom and happiness belong to subjective experience, or the world within, peace and unity are experienced objectively, in the world without. Cheon Il Guk is thus the world where two become one, where subjectivities harmonize for a greater whole instead of colliding. We all see our subjectivity projected and reflected in the community. The Principle of Creation states that the ideal family or society

    is patterned after the image of a perfect individual. It thus becomes the substantial object partner to the individual who lives in oneness with God, and consequently, it also becomes the substantial object partner to God. The individual feels joy, and likewise God feels joy, when each perceives in this family or community the manifestation of his own internal nature and external form.[8]

    The qualities of the individual are magnified by the whole. The supportive community, being an echo chamber of the individual’s aspirations, conveys the message that “You are the best in your area; you are a grace to our community, which is, in turn, the stage where your qualities are displayed.”

    With this Unificationist guideline and paradigm of human security in mind, we shall evaluate the existing doctrines of human security.

    Individual freedom is often seen as inimical to security. For Thomas Hobbes, the human being in the state of nature is a “wolf for man” (homo homini lupus). Human beings, who are naturally hostile to each other, experience the war of all against all (bellum omnium contra omnes). Hobbes describes the world of wild freedom as utterly barbarian, doomed to self-destruction.

    Hereby it is manifest that during the time men live without a common Power to keep them all in awe, they are in that condition which is called War; and such a war as is of every man against every man. [...] In such condition there is no place for Industry, because the fruit thereof is uncertain: and consequently, no Culture of the Earth… no Knowledge of the face of the Earth; … no Arts; no Letters; no Society; and which is worst of all, continual Fear, and danger of violent death; and the life of man solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.[9]

    Therefore, if we want to live in security, we have no choice but to alienate a part of our liberties to the State (the sovereign). This will deter any individual freedom from harming others. It will procure a certain external security, through the rule of law, the police and the armed forces. According to Max Weber, the rule of law amounts to the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force.

    These are central tenets of some modern theories of the Social Contract. For instance, Jean-Jacques Rousseau stated in his theory of the general will: “Whoever refuses to obey the general will be forced to do so by the entire body; this means merely that he will be forced to be free.” In contradiction to Rousseau’s theory of the general will, the theory of the consent of the governed wants to harmonize freedom and security. It will be discussed later.

    Hobbes and Rousseau’s ideas were the pillars of the doctrine of State security.[10] A nation-state is a sovereign and independent aggregation of populations, living in a given territory under the protection of a central administration. Through the use of the police forces, the State maintains law and order at home. Through the use of armed forces and military alliances, it hopes to deter war with other states. In this theory, and even if democracy is thriving, with a strong free press, a vibrant parliamentary life with a multiparty system and a certain degree of autonomy of the civil society, there is always the fear that the State apparatus could become uncontrollable, anonymous, bureaucratic, and abuse its legitimate powers. Dwight Eisenhower’s last presidential speech conveyed his fear of the military-industrial complex, which may in the end jeopardize human beings’ control over their personal and collective security.[11]

    The powerful State is given different names. At best, it is called the welfare state, which returns much social security in exchange for heavy taxation and a certain form of socialism. In the worst cases, it is called the “nanny state,”[12] or more gloomily, “Big Brother” that tends to be more and more involved in the global mass surveillance of the population, or simply Leviathan, as in Thomas Hobbes’ book.

    From mental disarmament to human security

    In this context, the concept of human security finally appeared. According to United Nations General Assembly Resolution 66/290, human security calls for “people-centered, comprehensive, context-specific and prevention-oriented responses that strengthen the protection and empowerment of all people.”

    The agenda of human security was already present in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, released in 1948. The preamble of UNESCO refers to it implicitly, “Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must be constructed.” This means that human beings don’t enjoy security just because war has ended and external disarmament is achieved. Already in 1932, Norman Boardman had called for a mental and spiritual disarmament:

    The question is that of physical disarmament, but back of military disarmament is a much deeper question, namely, mental disarmament. The two naturally work together, but no disarmament programme can be expected to very get far until mental disarmament has made more headway.[13]

    The calling for mental disarmament and opening one’s heart and arms to others after World War II was short lived. During the Cold War, walls and measures to segregate populations appeared: in Europe, the Iron Curtain, in Asia, the Bamboo Curtain, and in Africa, apartheid. Humankind entered an era of uncertainty and insecurity. Military expenses soared. A cultural war raged between two blocs.

    The fall of the Berlin Wall and the rapid progress of the European Union opened an era of optimism, which lasted for about 3 decades. Globalization became the catch word of international relations. The concept on human security appeared in 1994, with the will to chart “globalization with a human face”: it was deemed that international security would depend less on nation-states than before. Rather, it would involve the growing role of international or transnational organizations, the rise of the civil society and NGOs, and the influence of religions and of women. Discourse on human security meant that, in the new era, the traditional emphasis on armies and force to solve problems would recede. The idea of “people-to-people” security was in the air.

    Dr. Mahbub al-Haq (1934–1998) introduced the concept of human security in the UN report of human development in 1994 and during the social summit of the UN in 1995. Haq also created the human development index, widely used to measure the development of nations.[14]

    Worrying about others or caring for others?

    What is the difference between state security and human security? We should first remember that a nation-state includes three components, namely, people, territory and sovereignty. A nation-state, therefore, is a (1) body of people living (2) in a defined territory, with (3) the power to make laws and an organization to do so. Whereas state security mostly concerns the defence of the sovereignty and territory, human security mostly concerns the population. State security is typically Hobbesian: holding the monopoly of legal violence, the state protects the sovereignty and the territory from intrastate unrest through the ministry of interior and police forces, or from foreign aggression or war through state diplomacy, armed forces and military alliances. The language often used is that the state has sovereign powers to guarantee this security, mostly through the use of force.

    Human security, by contrast, is a civil security. It is the spontaneous law and order maintained by the civil society. Do surveillance devices and numerous police forces make a society safer? No, trust and brotherhood are the cement: citizens care for others more than they worry about others.

    State security concerns the sovereignty, independence and prestige of the nation-state. Human security deals with the security of the person, her rights and dignity. It fosters citizenship, trust, care, and is concerned about daily life. One might also say that state security is more external, yang type and based on the collective purpose, whereas the human security is more internal, yin type (nurturing) and focuses on more internal and personal needs.

    The worldwide COVID pandemic was a major stress test of the human security all around the globe; on this occasion, The UN Development Program (UNDP) issued a serious warning. It announced that for the first time since it was created over 30 years ago, the Human Development Index (a measure of countries’ life expectancies, education levels, and standards of living) had declined for two years straight, in 2020 and 2021.

    On the other hand, the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, which started on February 24, 2022, is a threat to state security, although many of its side effects, including refugees, economic recession and possible shortages of goods, impact human security.

    These recent developments make us feel “a strong association between declining levels of trust and increased feelings of insecurity,” warned Antonio Gutteres, the Secretary General of the United Nations, in his foreword to the 2022 UNDP report entitled “New Threats to Human Security in the Anthropocene Demanding Greater Solidarity.” Mr. Gutteres added,

    The pandemic has increased the uncertainty. It has imperiled every dimension of our wellbeing and amplified a sense of fear across the globe. This, in tandem with rising geopolitical tensions, growing inequalities, democratic backsliding and devastating climate change-related weather events, threatens to reverse decades of development gains, throw progress on the Sustainable Development Goals even further off track, and delay the urgent need for a greener, more inclusive and just transition.[15]

    The concept of human security is widely used by NGOs and by international agencies, particularly the United Nations. Human security is trying to gain credibility. David Hastings proposed a Human Security Index (HIS) in 2008.[16] In 2020, Alexander and Sabina Lautensach compiled the first academic textbook on human security.[17]In this monumental work, they claim that typing the term human security on the internet yielded no fewer than 45,700,000 results!

    Yet, some scholars keep questioning the definition of human security, its methodology and its conceptual tools. Human security remains still in need of a more precise definition. This is what we call the intension of a concept in formal logic. Instead, the advocates of human security worked hard, indeed with good motives, to broaden the extension of the concept. Instead of saying what it is, they tried to identify seven fields of application of the concept, delineated at the UN World Summit for Social Development of Copenhagen, in 1995: (1) Economic security, (2) Food security, (3) Health security, (4) Environmental security, (5) Personal security, (6) Community security and (7) Political security.

    Using this set of seven parameters, Sascha Werthes, Corinne Heaven and Sven Vollnhals proposed their own human (in)security index. The best security performers, according to their research were: (1) Norway, (2) Netherlands, (3) Japan, (4) Sweden, (5) Finland, (6) Germany, (7) Belgium, (8) Australia, (9) Slovenia, and (10) Ireland.[18] This index partly overlaps with and confirms (but not completely) the table of safest countries in the world (lowest criminality) as well the global peace index (most peaceful nations). The authors admit that all these indices are somewhat redundant with one another, and that some clarity is needed. They also genuinely confess that human security “remains too vague, too ambiguous, too conceptually weak to name only a few points which have been argued.”[19] The legitimacy of human security is questioned for the following reasons.

    • It remains ill-defined.
    • It is sometimes redundant with more precise terms (such as human rights, human development)
    • It may be a misnomer for something else. Sometimes, human security is used as a synonym of human needs[20] or of well-being. Experts on human security are aware of this. David Hastings, for instance, acknowledges that there is little difference between human security and well-being, “except that most descriptions and indicators on well-being seem focused on the middle class and above. Human security, on the other hand, focuses on all people.”[21] This shows how much human security remains empirical.
    • It amounts to reinventing the wheel. To insist on economic security and health security, for instance, is just to rediscover the notions of welfarism and social security.

    These critiques are serious. Yet, as long as the motivations and purposes behind human security are good, we may accept some degree of vagueness, just like for any new discipline. We shall also argue that, as long as freedom from fear and freedom from want, the two pillars of human security, remain firmly connected with the freedom of expression and freedom of worship—as in the original Four Freedoms speech of Franklin Roosevelt, the intellectual and moral compass is acceptable.

    Indeed, human security research has often provided interesting field studies. Gradually, a corpus of empirical knowledge is developing, with good methods and techniques of reporting. What is lacking is a comprehensive philosophy of human security, explaining in depth its premises and axioms.

    As we have seen, the Human Security Index (HSI)[22] of a country is using some parameters which often overlap those found in the Human Development Index (HDI)[23] or the Global Peace Index.[24] The question, therefore, is not to know whether we are talking about the same factors and trying to measure the same stuff, it is rather the question of why and for what we need that. The question is no longer to know which nations are the most powerful in this world, which ones rank first in GDP, military power, cultural influence, or system of education. The question is about truly lasting and sustainable development obtained in open societies. There is a growing call for a more pleasant and sustainable way of life, where we mind more about the quality of the good achieved daily than about the quantity of goods produced.

    Part II: The Security of Human Beings, by Human Beings and for Human Beings

    David Hastings sees human security as the “attainment of physical, mental, and spiritual peace/security of individuals and communities at home and in the world, in a balanced local/global context.” Sabina Alkire was apparently dissatisfied with the negative definitions of human security (freedom from want and freedom from fear). She suggested that “the objective of human security is to safeguard the vital core of all human lives from critical pervasive threats, in a way that is consistent with long-term human fulfilment.”[25] If we keep to this approach, then human security could simply be defined as the security of human beings, by human beings and for human beings. Antonio Gutteres, the Secretary general of the United Nations is urging us to “treat people not as helpless patients, but agents of change and action capable of shaping their own futures and course correcting”.[26] For the sake of clarity, we shall define three different levels of human security.

    1)     Worldwide, the freedoms from are to be strengthened. This is the security for human beings, so that their rights are recognized and protected. It may entail a responsibility to protect, which is a top-down approach, where people remain as passive agents. It also concerns the fight against poverty, so that people may have more.

    2)     On this foundation, we may secure the freedom of (or freedom to) in two ways:

    2.a Everywhere, people should be empowered to that human development continues. This works better with local governments and small communities, which avoid top-down approach and prefer a horizontal and shared responsibility. Teamwork among peers is the key. We may thus talk of a security byhuman beings, who act as capable agents and manage, gradually, to know more and to do more.

    2.b When this is achieved, we still can enhance the human dignity, how to be more. In the highest realm of freedom of, the self is autonomous, creative and starts to work for well-being. Each person becomes a contributor. This is therefore a security of(or from) human beings prompted by their own conscience, in a bottom-up approach.

    The term “security” would mean that this quest for well-being is not a vague and somewhat hedonistic search for a carefree and peaceful existence. It would also be a bit different from a mere welfarism. Defining well-being as human security would mean that humankind is searching for a lasting model of what Aristotle called eudaimonia, i.e., the good and happy society. The word security used here is a very broad notion for the long-term and sustainable fulfilment of the human condition.

    Some theoreticians of human security want more than a safe society. They ask, “can we build societies of lasting happiness, where destructive patterns disappear from the public and personal sphere?”

    Human security starts with making the right choices. By making these choices, society will decide to invest massively in long-term development. In politics, efforts will focus on reaching transparency and heading for full democracy, modernizing the administration, reforming the state and its representative institutions. Economics will focus on providing high-quality infrastructure and giving priority to the expansion of a well-educated middle class. Much investment will go into renewable energy, the transition toward a green economy, and research and development. Societal measures will focus on improving health, but also educating the population about food and good habits, including the practice of sports. Finally, human security may include cultural security, so that people of various ethnic groups can feel recognized and respected, while also receiving education and good training in universal values. Here, human security does not target only the most vulnerable people; it concerns the aspirations of the whole human family.

    Mrs. Akiko Yamanaka, a Senior Visiting Scholar at the Churchill College of Cambridge, in UK, is also the Former Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan. With her experience of research and work in diplomacy, she offered two cogent reflections onhuman security.[27] First, she insisted that we are still a period of transition. Right now, human security is a new and interesting concept, whose time of incarnation has yet to come. The models of human security could apply to many sectors, but the cultural background is still lacking. Why? Yamanaka shed a useful light, suggesting that we still live with a mindset that we should fight against something in order to be in peace. For instance, when the COVID crisis started, many voices declared a war and a mobilization against the virus. But, when human security is concerned, we should not be against anything. The only way to solve the problem is to cooperate with others, to think collectively.

    Yamanaka was also calling wisely for a sense of balance in the 21st century. We should acknowledge that there are dichotomies of competing values, but we should reconcile the apparent contradictions. For instance, she said, we can have development together with environmental protection. Globalization may go hand in hand with regionalization, and group orientation is compatible with individualism. We can work hard and have leisure as well. She even suggested that we can have materialism and spiritualism, male values and female values.

    Societies best prepared for this transition toward a culture of human security are often societies which have a long tradition of consensus through reformism and negotiation. The Netherlands is a multi-ethnic, highly urbanized and densely populated state, yet one of the safest nations. Its high achievement in human security is explained by the adoption of the polder model. It has been described as “a pragmatic recognition of pluriformity” and “cooperation despite differences.” [28]

    If this is so simple, what prevents many nations from adopting this model? Needless to say, nations with a tradition of crises, revolutions and conflicts don’t easily repudiate what they see as the DNA of their grandeur. Moreover, while searching for happiness, these nations cannot easily evacuate the legacy of sad passions. Sad passions are a concept of Baruch Spinoza: they include melancholy, fear, obsession, hate and resentment, revenge. When these sad passions are excessively echoed in the public sphere and affect the discourse of the media, of opinion leaders, of religious and political leaders, they fuel hate speech, intolerance, ostracism and populism, all tolerated in the name of freedom of expression.

    Increasing our rights, or expanding our love?

    The literature on human security often focuses on the individual rights. The human person is put at the center of security and is protected against threats. Human security promises a double liberation, which has become its trademark: liberation from fear and liberation from want. Yet, this formulation is ambiguous, presenting the self as just a passive agent or receiver of human security. Indeed, the discourse on human security is more efficient as a discourse of empowerment, where the self is transformed into a responsible actor for the community.

    Roman Catholic culture always showed a concern for the needy, so that they are not marginalized. Human security certainly includes this component, with the rationale that needy and left-out people may be tempted to use violence and spread insecurity. As we have seen, human security appeared within the concern to propose a globalization with a human face where the law of the jungle (free-market economy) is moderated by caring for the more vulnerable segments of the population. But the real philosophy of human security is that all people should be involved in the social contract of the country.

    How can we balance liberty, happiness, unity and peace? Gandhi called for Satyagraha and a revolution of our behavior. Likewise, Reverend Moon taught that only a revolution of true love will bring the peace we are searching for. Seeing human security only as an extension of rights is unhealthy. Human security also requires the “pure sacrifice” advocated by Gandhi and the extension of our duties. The whole idea behind the European Union was to extend the duties of citizens. Besides being citizens of their nation, they are also citizens for a greater good. By investing more energy in supporting their newly built institutions, Europeans will build a safer Europe. The EU thus tries to instill a European patriotism, which extends beyond love for one’s country. This makes Europe a safer place.

    What is the dilemma for human security, then? It is to find the balance between empowerment (freedom of) and protection (freedom from). Sadako Ogata and Amartya Sen said it clearly in the foreword of Human Security Now, a report released in 2003 by the UN Commission on Human Security:

    Human security is concerned with safeguarding and expanding people’s vital freedoms. It requires both shielding people from acute threats and empowering people to take charge of their own lives.[29]

    For those who feel confident, a safe society is an open society, which fosters innovation and initiative. In such a society, risk-takers, investors and entrepreneurs can act freely, without limitations. A famous example is the road safety regulations on German highways. Germany remains the only nation in the world with no speed limit on some portions of federal highways. It is recommended not to drive faster than 130 km per hour, but it is not considered illegal to do so on these portions, in certain circumstances. The mindset behind this choice is that Germany produces safe vehicles, the highways are of a high quality, and the drivers are responsible. The authorities assume that drivers will act responsibly, even when driving very fast. Most other cultures would see this choice as an extreme interpretation of human freedom. They may think that Germany encourages people on the road to be one-sided, rash and indifferent to side effects.

    The opposite extreme would be an obsession with safety regulations. Isabelle Filliozat warns against this. A leading figure of positive education in France, she stimulates all parents to be benevolent with their children and to avoid threats and punishments. For her, however, positive education should instill a sense of freedom, a sense of belonging, and an attitude of responsibility for future generations. Children should feel that this world is a world of opportunities, not a world of fear and danger. She suggests that “our world is too hygienist, too careful, too overprotective.”[30]

    This became a sensitive issue during the COVID pandemic. The restrictions on freedoms imposed by some states were deemed arbitrary, excessive and antidemocratic. Some people fear that a concern for human security would open the door to securitization or over-securitization.[31] Asian democracies, such as Japan, Korea and Taiwan, could sometimes find a better balance between freedom and security than Western nations. The problem was not political, it was mostly a cultural difference in the approach to uncertainty, risk and hazard.

    This raises a fundamental question: what is security? When do we feel secure in our life? The Institute for Security and Open Methodologies defines security as “a form of protection where a separation is created between the assets and the threat.” The main assets of a person are:

    • her essence,
    • her existence,
    • her various achievements.[32]

    Expressed in a more positive language, security refers to a situation where a person feels free and confident to assert her identity (essence), to act and exist as she wants, and to openly display her belongings and achievements. In an open society, all of this is considered self-evident. Reversely, there are societies living in situations of insecurity for three major reasons:

    • The future is too uncertain to make any project. When tomorrow is uncertain, hope, opportunity and projection are reduced. This situation is even worse in a society where the self feels split, or torn between tradition and modernity, indigenous culture and Westernization, community structures and individual aspirations;
    • Daily existence is made difficult because of scarcity, lack and want. A complication in health, which may be benign in a safe society, may become fatal where the medical infrastructures are rare and of poor quality;
    • A person may feel insecure because the whole natural or social environment is characterized by risk and hazard.

    To summarize, human insecurity has three broad meanings: We have uncertainty, which leads to existential or psychic insecurity where the person doubts her identity, is apprehensive about making choices and taking responsibility. We suffer from scarcity, want, and lack. And we may feel physically threatened by a danger, which may suddenly hit, damage, or destroy our body, either from within or from without.

    Surely, human security has a biological component. Like any living being, the human being has basic needs and seeks shelter, food, and protection. However, one should remember that in the human species, the aspect of instinct is almost non-existent.

    Thus, Hobbes’ statement that in the state of nature, man is a wolf for man is absurd for two reasons. First, wolves are naturally social. Studies have showed that a wolf pack (or family group) is an exceedingly complex unit, centered on a breeding pair. Wolves are indeed a predatory species for many other species, but they live naturally in great harmony with one another. The second mistake of Hobbes is to speak of the state of nature for human beings. Humans are, from the start, beings of culture who learn to cope with dangerous environments and to turn crises into opportunities. Through education, parents teach their children to be confident and also to avoid hazardous behaviors. The state does not dictate all the regulations. They first come from the home.

    In 2002, the Joint Center for Poverty Research at the University of Chicago and Northwestern University identified the Five S’s that the nuclear family should normally provide for a healthy human development, namely (1) Safety, (2) Structure, (3) Surveillance, (4) Stimulation, and (5) Socio-emotional support.

    Through intellectual education and logical reasoning, our consciousness grows and we start to master the natural environment. Through moral education, we strengthen our conscience and can adapt to the socio-cultural environment. Freedom from ignorance, both intellectual and moral, is the best way to liberate ourselves from want and from fear. Human security is first of all a security of human beings and by human beings, and not just a security for human beings.

    “Larger freedom” and human security

    In Unificationist terminology, human security has two components. The freedom from fear and freedom from want are more external and “objective.” Human beings should protect themselves from either natural or man-made risk and hazards, which may expose their existence and essence to uncertainty, danger, instability and scarcity. However, security can only be called human security if human beings themselves act as owners of their security by adopting a responsible and value-oriented behavior, which is more internal and subjective. (Figure 1)

    A major challenge of the twenty-first century is to harmonize two complementary agendas: the agenda of larger freedom and the agenda of enhanced security. Kofi Annan, the former secretary of the United Nations (1997-2006) presented his report “In Larger Freedom: Towards Development, Security and Human Rights for All” to the UN General Assembly in March 2005.[33] His comprehensive strategy advocated giving “equal weight and attention to the three great purposes of this organization: development, security and human rights, all of which must be underpinned by the rule of law.” The report was called “In Larger Freedom” because he believed that those words from the UN Charter[34] conveyed the idea that development, security and human rights were inseparable.

    “In Larger Freedom” fully supported the two agendas of human security, i.e., freedom from want and freedom from fear. It added a third agenda, the “Freedom to Live in Dignity,” urging all states to strengthen the rule of law, human rights and democracy in concrete ways. Kofi Annan asked them to embrace the principle of the “Responsibility to Protect.”

    The two recent crises affecting the globe are evidence of the challenge to keep the balance between larger freedom and security. During the Covid pandemic, some freedoms were “sacrificed” on the altar of health security. The rise of China, Russia, Turkey and Iran as alternative models to democracies is seen as inimical in advanced democracies, mostly in the Northern Hemisphere.

    Yet, a growing disenchantment for larger freedoms is observed in the Southern Hemisphere, which puts the priority on security and may seek authoritarian solutions. The public in Africa, in the Middle East and in some areas of South America may look for authoritarian solutions. Many nations keep a façade of democracy and the rule of law, but impose severe restrictions on major freedoms, which are seen as decadent. They play on patriotic values, sometimes family values. This is seen favorably by some neoconservative circles in the Northern Hemisphere, and may become popular in the Southern Hemisphere. China is often seen as an alternative model, where authoritarianism seems to go hand in hand with prosperity and long-term security. Russia invaded Ukraine with an existential obsession for its “security.” But what about freedom?

    Positive and negative freedom

    From the start, human security is presented as an extension of freedom, particularly freedom from want and freedom from fear. Many people seem to have forgotten who spoke of these two freedoms first, and when. Actually, they did not appear in 1994-1995 when the term “human security” was introduced. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was the first to speak of these two freedoms, in his Four Freedoms Speech on January 6, 1941. According to Alexander and Sabina Lautensach, “Roosevelt’s address is believed by many to have created the plinth on which the moral imperatives of the human security paradigm rest.”[35]

    Roosevelt started with this powerful statement:

    In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms.

    Here, freedom is the major theme. Safety is the minor theme. A safe and peaceful world is at hand. Shall we gain greater freedom by seeking safety at all cost? No. Rather, the pursuit of freedom everywhere will make everyone safer. Roosevelt then speaks of the four freedoms.

    The first is freedom of speech and expression—everywhere in the world.
    The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way—everywhere in the world.
    The third is freedom from want—which… means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants—everywhere in the world.
    The fourth is freedom from fear—which… means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point… that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor—anywhere in the world.

    Roosevelt distinguished between two complementary aspects of freedom. Freedom of is sometimes defined as positive liberty, because it is an assertion of the self who acts autonomously as the legislator of his or her own action. This echoed Gandhi’s ideas of a free and peaceful India

    Mere withdrawal of the English is not independence. It means the consciousness in the average villager that he is the maker of his own destiny, he is his own legislator through his chosen representatives.[36]

    Freedom from is defined as negative liberty. In order to act freely, a person should first of all be liberated from obstacles or restrictions. Roosevelt’s speech avoided these philosophical discussions.

    A few years later, it became necessary to clarify that these two concepts are both distinct and complementary. Isaiah Berlin (1909-1997) did it prophetically. His work should be rediscovered, particularly when we deal with some ambiguities of the discourse on human security and its one-sided insistence on negative freedoms (freedom from fear, freedom from want), which tends to obliterate Roosevelt’s positive freedoms (freedom of expression, freedom of worship). For Isaiah Berlin, “I am slave to no man” is the slogan of negative liberty. By contrast, “I am my own master” is the credo of positive liberty, the freedom to choose one’s own pursuits in life.

    In 1958, the whole world had entered the Cold War. Isaiah Berlin, an immigrant from Russia to the United Kingdom, gave his inaugural lesson, “Two Concepts of Liberty,” at Oxford university. Berlin defined “negative liberty” as absence of coercion or interference of private actions by an external political body. “Positive liberty,” Berlin maintained, could be thought of as self-mastery, which asks not what we are free from, but what we are free to do. Hobbes had ignored this positive liberty.

    Berlin was born in Riga, Latvia, in a wealthy Jewish family, who then moved to Saint Petersburg, Russia. He witnessed the atrocities of the Russian Revolution. Obsessed by negative liberty, the Bolshevik ideology repressed all forms of positive liberty. Before becoming the famous intellectual theoretician about these two concepts, Berlin had experienced the tragedy of misguided freedom.

    If freedom in the public sphere sometimes appears as freedom of (positive liberty) and sometimes as freedom from (negative freedom), what would be the best synthesis of these two aspects? How can we conceive a larger freedom, which would naturally provide greater security? In other words, how can human beings enjoy greater freedom while living in a safer word?

    First, we should remember that both Alexis de Tocqueville (Democracy in America, 1835) and John Stuart Mill emphasized the “consent of the governed.” This concept is the antidote to Hobbes’ view of the social contract, where individuals are wrongly portrayed as alienating their liberty to the sovereign. In contrast to Hobbes, the American Constitution states that all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights. In a man-made social contract, some rights are alienated to the sovereign in exchange for security. But the American Constitution postulates a covenant with God, whereby His children are given rights and responsibilities, which are both divine and natural, namely “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This preamble gives priority to freedom and responsibility. Only then is safety discussed.

    We learn that, to secure these rights,

    … governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it… laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    The consent of the governed means that the source of political power is not some divine right. The sovereign is not chosen by God, but elected by the sovereign people, and then only anointed by God—at least in the American presidential inauguration within a secular system, where there is no State religion but simply one nation under God.

    The concept of consent of the governed was dear to Gandhi, who wrote,

    By Swaraj I mean the government of India by the consent of the people. Swaraj is to be attained by educating the masses to a sense of their capacity to regulate and control authority. [37]

    “Mutual liberty” would be even better than “consent of the governed”. It may not apply to the State, where some coercion remains necessary, but it is enlightening to describe what often takes place in interpersonal relations, associations, local communities, in the civil society at large.

    The theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer explained why human freedom is essentially experienced as mutuality and reciprocity. At the end of his life, Bonhoeffer, without denying the existence of the individual freedom or autonomy, stressed that a human being is never completely alone and by himself, but necessarily in a situation of being responsible in front of others. He wrote,

    Freedom is not a quality of man which can be revealed… but a relationship and nothing else. In truth, freedom is a relationship between two persons. Being free means being free for the other, because the other has bound me to him. Only in relationship with the other am I free.[38]

    The notion of mutual liberty is implicit in Gandhi’s political views of “pure sacrifice.” It also echoes the fundamental concern of Reverend Moon to connect human freedom to human responsibility, and to the connected pursuits of unity, peace and happiness expressed in the Family Pledge Number 4.[39] Rev. Moon said:

    Where there is no unity, there is no freedom, happiness, peace or hope. If your mind and body have not become one, can you be happy? If they clash, can you be happy? Does freedom exist there? They should have good give and take with each other. Peace requires mutual balance, but is there a balance? There is freedom only on the basis of unity. Without it, there is no happiness, peace or hope. (231-269, 1992.6.7)
    Hope, happiness, peace and even freedom, which all people desire, everything happens on the basis of unity. Happiness, peace and freedom are realized only in relationships of subject and object partners. These subject-object relationships stand on the foundation of unity. (225-93, 1992.1.5)

    Unification ontology sees human beings as composed of a spirit self and a physical self. This dual nature accounts for the two freedoms mentioned so far, the positive freedom and the negative freedom. Our physical self has needs and drives, requires physical protection and care, and seeks material values. The body requires constant freedom from restriction, and human security so far has too much focused on the physical aspect of security—freedom from fear and freedom from want.

    However, a comprehensive philosophy of human security should also include the spiritual dimension, that is the spiritual and existential security. Our spirit self has desires and aspirations, grows through education, and seeks spiritual values. Human freedom is a synthesis of these two freedoms. Freedom is complete when one can do what one may do.

    Anglo-Saxon political culture always gave priority to the pursuit of positive liberty, freedom of, especially the freedom of expression and freedom of worship. Meanwhile, the French tradition, and later the socialist models, strongly insisted on negative liberty, in other words, liberation from. Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech offered a synthesis. For the sake of global human security, those two paths should more than ever converge, rather than diverge.

    Part III: In Larger Freedom, for a Safer World: An Eschatological View

    A safe society is free from want and free from fear. Moreover, the safe home and safe community should flourish with creativity, interaction, service and concord. Isaiah Berlin spoke about positive and negative freedom. Likewise, there are two kinds of peace: security is the negative peace, the absence of violence, conflict or war. Positive peace is achieved when people, transcending their ego boundaries, enjoy a greater freedom in greater communion.

    Some human security studies maintain a dialectical view of nature and of the human society, where all relations are conflict-ridden and based on self-interest. If so, we may curb violence but never really eradicate it. Moreover, these studies often overemphasize physical security and the physical needs of human beings, as if we were living in a purely material dimension.

    Another problem is that some recent theories of the Anthropocene is to portray humans as the villains and foes of their own survival and of nature. The United Nations see these theories with less caution than the scientific community. The 2022UNDP report is entitled “New Threats to Human Security in the Anthropocene Demanding Greater Solidarity.”

    Alexander and Sabina Lautensach’s textbook on human security often refers to the Club of Rome and its controversial prophecies. Some chapters actually adopt the style and imagery of survivalism. Predicting an inevitable collapse, they advocate a drastic reduction of the human population, and of development policies that promote population growth. Here, climate change replaces the wrath of God of traditional eschatology, but with a direct attack on core tenets of monotheism.

    Humanity developed the perspective of being ‘above’ nature, more powerful than nature, a ‘belief’ that it was exempt from the limits of nature common to other life. This impression is epitomized in Genesis 1:28: “God blessed them and said to them, ‘Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.’” This perspective of moral exceptionalism and anthropocentrism was elaborated later by philosophers and scientists such as Francis Bacon, René Descartes and Isaac Newton.[40]

    This critique of Monotheism is serious. The apocalyptic tone of some human security studies instills fear instead of hope, as if we were doomed for hell by our wrong choices. We have good reasons to suggest quite the opposite.

    Existing religious worldviews, especially the monotheistic tradition, should evaluate studies on the topic of human security. They are not necessarily antireligious. Moreover, they may offer the best avenue for a reconciliation between God, humankind and nature, or between theos, anthropos and cosmos.

    The inescapable network of mutuality

    The term human security appeared around 1995 and was quickly adopted in the United Nations vocabulary; during the same period, Reverend and Mrs. Moon, often referred to as the True Parents, launched many organizations and projects of a global peace movement, hoping to offer models of good practices for the United Nations.

    Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once declared that “we are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied to a single garment of destiny.” This perfectly describes True Parents’ vision for the ideals of kong-saeng, kong-yeong and kong-ui,[41] three Korean terms will be translated in this essay as “common land,” “common good,” and “common view.” They advocate a cosmic view of mutuality to overcome all types of insecurity. In summary, Heaven belongs to all, humanity belongs to all, the earth belongs to all. In line with Dr. King’s exhortation, they provide tools to “evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.”[42]

    Kong-saeng concerns the economic aspect of a just world, which has achieved prosperity and freedom from want. Kong-yeong refers to the political structure of the ideal world where all people enjoy freedom from fear and freedom of expression. Finally, kong-ui refers to transcendent principles which enable us to live in spiritual security, with freedom of worship. The Divine Principle insists that Kong-saeng, kong-yeong and kong-uiare mutually connected.

    Religion and economy are integrated with our life in society through politics. Especially, in Western Europe, politics has sought to connect economic development, which has closely followed the progress of science, with the path of Christianity, which has often lacked a clear sense of its providential direction.[43]

    Kong-ui, kong-yeong and kong-saeng partly derive from the Biblical verses “Be fruitful, multiply, subdue the earth” (Gen. 1:28), seen in Unificationism as the three original blessings of God to human beings. Some authors see Gen. 1:28 as inimical to human security. This is wrong. Human beings were first to grow toward their full spiritual maturity and achieve oneness with Heaven (be fruitful). This covenant between Heaven and human beings is the root of kong-ui. Human beings should have a natural relationship with God, the Creator, transcending all denominations. Kong-ui provides the security of human beings, their spiritual and existential well-being.

    They should then create the perfect union between man and woman and create healthy families of true love (multiply). This should be the foundation of mankind’s unity, or kong-yeong. This is the security by human beings, their social and political welfare.

    On that foundation, the perfect communion between God the Creator, human beings the co-creators, and the entire creation would have been possible, enabling us to rule the world (have dominion) and create kong-saeng. This is the security for human beings, their sustainable development.

    The basic Unificationist position on human insecurity

    Before we enter a more detailed discussion on kong-saeng, kong-yeong and kong-ui, let us summarize the Unificationist position on human insecurity.

    Due to the Human Fall, we became immature and insecure in being, loving and doing. We lost the positions that the Creator wanted for us originally.

    Separated from God, we are uncertain about who we are and live in self-contradiction, and self-alienation. Separated from our humanity, we look at others as strangers and often apprehend relationships as full of fear. Finally, separated from nature, we fear that we are unable to do the right thing, or end up doing things that do not reflect our original intention.

    In relation to God, we have fallen into the pits of spiritual-existential-moral insecurity. It is mostly a trouble in the First Blessing, a failure to keep our position and value as children of God. Human beings may either reject God, or feel rejected by God, or separated from God. A gap is created between the transcendent and myself. Disorders in the First Blessing may also may also manifest in fanaticism, idolatry or the taste for totalitarian ideals, which also increase the insecurity.

    In relation to our neighbor, we have been drifting toward a state of permanent relational-emotional-social insecurity. These disorders of the Second Blessing signify that human beings have lost their original and blissful position of brothers and sisters. The emotional distortion is manifested into two major areas, the drives toward all forms of sexual misconduct and the drives toward hatred, violence and crime.

    Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalysis tried to explore the magma of hidden and unconscious passions that lay underneath our civilizations and undermine them. He concluded that all instincts fall into one of two major classes: life drives and death drives, later dubbed Eros and Thanatos.[44]Unificationism agrees with the idea of destructive unconscious forces at work in history. Using biblical terminology, Unificationism states that the Adam and Eve problem and the Cain and Abel problem are constantly reenacted in our personal lives and in the history of mankind, until they are repaired. Unificationism sees the whole human history as a universal effort to atone for the two major components of sin.

    Regarding the Adam and Eve question, Unificationism teaches first the original sanctity of marriage and human sexuality, and second that there is a fundamental disorder, a misuse of love, which has undermined our unions from the beginning. Regarding the Cain-Abel question, Unificationism reveals why those in the Cain position can deeply hate those in the Abel position and how this problem can be “restored,” in the Unificationist terminology.

    It should be noted that Pope Francis often uses the Cain-Abel terminology, with a similar approach. In a morning meditation given on February 13, 2017 on the Story of Cain and Abel, the Pope spoke of “a brotherhood which was to grow to become beautiful but instead wound up destroyed.”[45] More recently, the Pope, referring to Russian invasion of Ukraine, “begged” God to “stop Cain’s hand,” asking for forgiveness “if we continue to kill our brother, if we continue to kill our brother, if we continue to raise stones from our land like Cain to kill Abel.”[46]

    In relation to the Creation, we are caught in a state of permanent insecurity. This is a trouble in the third Blessing, because human beings have lost their original position as rightful masters of creation. Hence, we struggle to do things or create things well, that is, with true love. The modern world is affected by all kinds of addiction to substances, our economic system creates too many side effects (exploitation, corruption and pollution), and nihilism is at work in many forms of art.

    From a Unificationist viewpoint, the irruption of sin destroyed the foundation of kong-ui, kong-yeong and kong-saeng. The Bible suggests that man became afraid of God and started to hide, feeling insecure spiritually and existentially. Moreover, a profound sexual anxiety arose between the man and the woman, undermining their innocence. “I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid,” said Adam. (Gen. 3:11) And God says to Eve, “your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” (Gen. 3:16) Finally, human beings, instead of mastering the creation, become slaves on a tedious labor. “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food.” (Gen. 3:17-19)

    From this we may infer:

    • First, external insecurity, manifested as want and fear in the economic and political realms, often reflects a more internal insecurity, which is primarily spiritual, existential and moral.
    • Second, human beings experience a permanent situation of insecurity and anxiety because they cannot find their proper position in relation to Heaven and to themselves, in relation to others, and in relation to the Creation. We are meant to love God, to love others and to love the creation, but we end up using God, using others and using the creation for selfish purposes. This misuse of love feeds human insecurity at all levels. We suffocate with insecurity in an atmosphere where love is not expressed well.

    Unification Thought suggests that humans originally are much more than homo religious, homo sapiens, homo faber. We are supposed to be homo amans, loving persons.[47] We certainly should believe better, think better, and do better. However, only the revolution from false love to true love may bring perpetual security.

    It must be of the spirit if we are to save the flesh

    Human security is first experienced within, and then without. The Divine Principle states,

    A fallen person possesses both an original mind, which prompts him to pursue goodness, and an evil mind, which fills him with evil desires and rebels against the promptings of the original mind. The two minds are constantly at war with each other, inclining us toward shifting and conflicting behaviors. Since human society is composed of individuals who are constantly at war within themselves, interactions among them cannot help but be full of discord and conflict. Human history has consisted of people's conflict-ridden social relationships constantly changing with the course of time.[48]

    Malfunctions of the socio-cultural environment do exist, but they mostly reflect the sinful nature of human beings.

    After external security was restored with the surrender of Japan in 1945, General Douglas MacArthur described the future of world peace in these terms:

    It is my earnest hope, and indeed the hope of all mankind, that from this solemn occasion a better world shall emerge out of the blood and carnage of the past, a world dedicated to the dignity of man and the fulfillment of his most cherished wish for freedom, tolerance and justice.[49]

    Like many in his generation, MacArthur cherished the rational humanism and good will expressed in the Universal Declarations of Human Rights; yet being familiar with Shakespeare and the Bible, he professed a tragic, but also a messianic perspective on war and peace,

    Men since the beginning of time have sought peace. Various methods through the ages have been attempted to devise an international process to prevent or settle disputes between nations. The problem basically is theological and involves a spiritual recrudescence and improvement of human character that will synchronize with our almost matchless advance in science, art, literature and all material and cultural developments…. It must be of the spirit if we are to save the flesh.

    A “spiritual recrudescence and improvement of the human character” is precisely the foundation of the Unificationist view on human security. We read in the Divine Principle,

    The Kingdom of Heaven on earth is a society whose structure is formed in the image of a perfect person. Likewise, fallen society may be regarded as formed in the likeness of a fallen person. We can better understand the history of societies built by sinful humanity by examining the inner life of a fallen person.[50]

    At the dawn of the 20th century, the Western world was ruling the globe. Its worldview triumphed everywhere. Tragically, the spiritual foundation of this worldview was declining, and was replaced by an optimistic and naïve belief in progress through science, positivism, rationality. The apocalyptic losses of World War I shattered this optimism. Externally, the West kept spreading the gospel of humanism, science, progress. This superficial optimism could hardly dissimulate a disenchanted angst among the leading thinkers who started to present the human condition as a permanent experience of existential, metaphysical insecurity. The intelligentsia was unconsciously reactivating the doctrine of original sin and human depravity, but without redemption. It was as if the rest of human history was to be about external progress and a better life in a better environment, but with no hope to ever find meaning in human life. Today, this angst of the West is contagious and is seriously eroding any attempt to propose real human security. It can only feed a permanent sense of nihilism and the meaninglessness of life. What, then, is existential security?

    The Divine Principle suggests that human beings today live in a state of insecurity because the human condition became tragic. This is the root of human insecurity. The human condition is tragic and insecure because we misuse our freedom and we fail in our responsibility.

    A disease called man

    Current human security studies never mention this spiritual and existential insecurity. Viewing human security in terms of physical and social needs, they ignore the deep anxiety of human beings who cannot find meaning, purpose and value for their life. The Zarathustra of Friedrich Nietzsche states that “The earth has a skin and that skin has diseases; one of its diseases is called man.”[51] Whereas the modern thinkers of the Anthropocene strongly accuse human beings of being the corruptors and polluters of nature, Nietzsche suggests that we are born corrupted. But why? For Nietzsche, our conscience makes us sick.

    Much of modern humanism is based on Descartes’ exaltation of the dignity of human consciousness and human conscience. His cogito ergo sum made human consciousness the rock bottom of all certainty. It was to be the sure compass of human knowledge in the modern times. Regarding the field of ethics, Jean-Jacques Rousseau later called the conscience a “divine instinct, an infallible judge.” However, while apparently triumphing in all the fields of science, the modern Western world started to vacillate in its conscience.

    The era of “the unhappy consciousness”

    In the Phenomenology of the Spirit, Georg W. Hegel introduced the major theme of the “unhappy consciousness” (Unglückseliges Bewusstein).[52] The unhappy consciousness is a consciousness that experiences itself as divided within and against itself. Hegel describes the human being as the partner of God, the Absolute Being. God wants to reveal Himself and know Himself objectively through the life and consciousness of human beings. The purpose of history is to arrive at a perfect oneness between God and human beings. The Hegelian theodicy does not seek a perfect communion of love, like in Christian theology, but some sort of gnostic Pentecost of absolute knowledge. As human beings struggle to overcome ignorance, they constantly experience a profound anxiety between their thirst for the Absolute and the Infinite, and their miserable reality as finite and mortal beings living within the constraints of time and space. Whereas Christian theology had often talked about the struggle between the mind and the body, Hegel’s dialectic sees the conflict within the mind itself.

    Hegel’s theme of the unhappy consciousness deeply influenced on the one hand Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud, whom Paul Ricoeur called “the masters of suspicion.”[53] On the other hand, the unhappy consciousness is the common leitmotif of almost all Existentialist thought, from Kierkegaard to Sartre.

    Emil Cioran, hijacking Apostle Paul in an existentialist context, wrote, “Consciousness is much more than the thorn,it is the dagger in the flesh.”[54]Why is it so? What’s wrong with the consciousness? Miguel de Unamuno, who wrote about the tragic sense of life, stated

    Man, by the very fact of being man, of possessing consciousness, is, in comparison with the ass or the crab, a diseased animal. Consciousness is a disease.[55]

    In the same mood, the French novelist Vercors observed,

    The animal is one with nature, but the human being is two with it. The transition from the passive unconsciousness to the interrogative consciousness, entails this schism, this divorce.[56]

    This schism is the rock bottom of a fundamental human insecurity, which is unredeemable. It leads Martin Heidegger to see human being as lonely in a meaningless universe. According to Heidegger, we are “thrown into this world,” and moreover we are the “being-towards-death.” This unending metaphysical angst feeds a burning moral anxiety. The French existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre stated,

    We have no excuse behind us, no justification before us. We are alone, with no excuses. This is the idea I shall try to convey when I say that man is condemned to be free.” [57]

    The young Reverend Moon also had a tragic sense of life. He could easily have become a man of despair and anxiety, an angry man, a rebel, a nihilist, because he was facing the chaos of the world and refused the vague answers of established institutions. But he took the path of heroic spiritual courage. He was determined to maintain the dignity of God and the dignity of human beings as absolutes. What is spiritual courage?

    In The Courage to be,Paul Tillich described existential anxiety as “the state in which a being is aware of its possible nonbeing.”[58] He identified three categories for the nonbeing and resulting anxiety: ontic (fate and death), moral (guiltand condemnation), and spiritual (emptiness, meaninglessness). For Tillich, the modern age is immersed in a fundamental spiritual anxiety, whereas in earlier periods other forms of anxiety were predominant. For Tillich, this anxiety should be accepted as part of the human condition.

    Heaven belongs to all (kong-ui)

    Tillich, like other Christian existentialists (Kierkegaard, Unamuno, Jaspers) see the spiritual courage as a mere act of spiritual and often lonely resistance. Reverend Moon wanted to go beyond spiritual resistance. His strategy for a world of spiritual security covers three areas: disbelief, false beliefs and conflicts of beliefs. Disbelief is the loss of faith in God, the decline of spirituality, and the spread of a purely secular culture.[59] False beliefs are the modern forms of heresies and idolatries which give rise to totalitarian ideologies, such as Nazism and Communism.[60] The conflicts of beliefs are the theological disputes within a religion or among existing religions. Whereas Samuel Huntington warned against a possible “clash of civilizations,” the chapter of the Divine Principle called Eschatology offers a theoretical framework for the inevitable convergence of all religious spheres and their cooperation to realize the Kingdom of Heaven on earth.[61]

    Kong-ui refers to the spiritual values that should be the foundation of living together, whether in a nation or in among nations. Ernest Renan defined the nation as “a soul, a spiritual principle.” And he added,

    Two things, which in truth are but one, constitute this soul or spiritual principle. One lies in the past, one in the present. One is the possession in common of a rich legacy of memories; the other is present-day consent, the desire to live together, the will to perpetuate the value of the heritage that one has received in an undivided form.[62]

    If love is to be the horizontal cement and the glue which makes us live together, what Renan called “present day consent,” it must connect with a vertical axis and possibly a transcendence. However, no religion can have the monopoly of soul and spiritual principle, which has to remain the numinous.[63]

    What is this spiritual principle that Rev. Moon calls kong-ui?First, he often said that the living God should not be experienced through religious institutions with a clergy and dogmas and rituals, which are somehow artificial. God is to reside in our heart and our conscience. Seeing the whole world as one family under God, he advocated Godism to be the foundation of eternal peace. Rev. Moon insisted that God created human beings for joy and to be co-creators. He said,

    Once a love relationship is established, you immediately enjoy equality of participation, equality of dignity, and the right of inheritance. Human ambition has an ultimate goal to acquire God's love to the fullest extent, so that you can participate equally at God's level in His joy and all that He possesses. Once you acquire the love of God, you can go no further. Once you establish this love relationship with God, no power under the sun can separate you from His love. We will be resonant beings of the love of God, vibrating together on the wavelength of the love of God, echoing and acting according to the love of God. Our ultimate purpose is to have our mind and body totally united with the love of God.[64]

    Second, Rev. Moon taught about the realization of the ideal world on earth. God’s ideal surely cannot concern only the afterlife. The task to build the Kingdom of Heaven on earth (Cheonilguk) means that we are to restore the original three blessings of Gen. 1:28.

    Third, Rev. Moon mobilized spiritual leaders of all religions for this task of building Cheon Il Guk. The walls among existing religions cannot be overcome only through theological discussions. Kong-ui assumes that people of all religions and creeds can transcend their boundaries if we also build kong-yeong and kong-saeng. We shall elaborate more about this below.

    Fourth, Rev. Moon affirmed that true faith and true science should work together. Religious scriptures provide internal wisdom but are written with many symbols which cannot be interpreted literally. Faith grows through discussion, through experience, and through our spiritual maturity. Science can never be dogmatic. The establishment of Kong-ui needs a harmony between religion and science.

    Humanity belongs to all (kong-yeong)

    Kong-yeong, sometimes translated “mutual prosperity” in Unification literature, actually means the common good or commonwealth, in the political sense.

    In 2015, Pope Francis declared, “Politics, though often denigrated, remains a lofty vocation and one of the highest forms of charity, inasmuch as it seeks the common good.” In his Encyclical Fratelli Tutti(All brothers), the Pope even coined the term “political love” and declared in the paragraph 180:

    Recognizing that all people are our brothers and sisters, and seeking forms of social friendship that include everyone, is not merely utopian. It demands a decisive commitment to devising effective means to this end. Any effort along these lines becomes a noble exercise of charity.

    Can we then say that politics “is the highest and greatest form of charity,”[65] as Pope Francis suggested? Rev. Moon would certainly agree that the vertical love of God should be expressed horizontally in human communities, and these communities should not necessarily be religious organizations. In the cosmic view of True Parents, all human beings are finally to become the body of Christ, not only in their religious life, but also in their political life and economic life. Even though it may look utopian, it is actually based on the natural law and on the social law.

    Auguste Comte (1798-1857), the founder of Positivism, was a pioneer of sociology, and may even have coined the term.[66] Comte asserted that the basic law of nature and of society is not contradiction and conflict, as Marxism maintains, but rather mutualism, cooperation, harmony. Viewing anthropology as the supreme science, he wanted sociology to crown this supreme science. Isaac Newton had revolutionized the physical sciences by discovering the universal law of gravitation, which could apply everywhere. Willing to be the Newton of sociology, Comte sought a universal law which would apply to all social phenomena. This led him to coin the word “altruism” (from the Latin alter, the other). He declared that “living for the sake of others”[67] was the universal law of society.

    While refining his thought, Comte became aware that only selfless love could generate a genuine altruism and strengthen the consent of the governed. He also understood that only a revolution in conjugal love and family ethics would make this possible. The True Parents have emphasized that the root of citizenship is morality based on true love, and that the family is the school of love. The crisis in modern democracies is not so much in political institutions but in the most fundamental institution, i.e., the family cell. Human security studies tend to ignore the role of the family.

    The earth belongs to all (kong-saeng)

    Kong-saeng literally means co-existence. Economically speaking, the planet earth is a common resource, to be managed in interdependence. Mother earth belongs to all, not just one nation, or one community. It should benefit the whole human family. For the True Parents, the environmental question needs to be addressed together with religious question, the socio-political question, and the economic question. Reverend Moon said:

    All mankind needs a movement of people living together in mutual cooperation and true love, and a movement to protect the environment; that is, to love and preserve nature. Most importantly, this movement should be led by religious people. In an ideal society or nation, the people, transcending national and racial barriers, will cooperate with each other to live harmoniously and in happiness. They will be conscious of being God’s sons and daughters and one extended family which can meet as brothers and sisters. All people will coexist in coprosperity and common cause in this culture of God's heart. This world will have nothing to do with corruption or injustice, or with war or crime. Mankind will eliminate the causes of pollution in the global environment, and love and protect nature as a true owner.[68]

    As mentioned above, the theories of the Anthropocene are challenging this view. There are reasons for that, which are explained in the Unification Thought.

    Human beings cannot, by their own will, exercise dominion over the creation, since human beings were created after all things had been created by God. However, human beings were created as God’s children, and therefore, they should be allowed to inherit their parent’s property and rights once they have grown up. Accordingly, God desired [them to] establish a condition to inherit His dominion: God directed them to grow, while accomplishing their portion of responsibility. The condition set for them was that they should perfect themselves through fulfilling their responsibility, whereby the condition would be regarded as equivalent to their having participated in God’s creation of the universe.[69]

    Human beings have failed in their original responsibility, which was to become co-creators who participate in the divine life, inherit the divine character and share their daily existence on earth with God. In our daily life, we fail to assume our position to represent God and to behave as the rightful masters of the creation. We dominate the creation with a self-centered, rationalistic, materialist attitude not as channels of the divine love. Human beings are far from behaving as heirs of God. At best, they try to be His servants. Therefore, while they mimic the attitude of the lord or master of nature, they lack the qualification to do so. It led Apostle Paul to write,

    The whole creation is waiting with eagerness for the children of God to be revealed… We are well aware that the whole creation, until this time, has been groaning in labor pains.[70]

    In an age of industrialization and mass production, man’s dominion is excessively rational, materialist, technical, self-centered. But economy and ecology both come from oikos, the house. With the Pantanal Project launched in 1995, True Parents envisioned an economic and ecological project run by families in the southwest of Brazil. They wanted to bring together families from around the world who would feel at home and be free to practice their ideals and values in a preserved area, respecting the local environment and local culture. Whereas many survivalist projects are motivated by fear and guilt, the True Parents were appealing to a genuine desire for a better, more happy life. Rev. Moon said,

    In this ideal model world, all of life’s activities and labors will be expressed in the practice of joyful service for the sake of others based on a heart of love. Therefore, there will be equality in standards of living. For education, all the modern facilities of civilization will be utilized. On the foundation of families, education of heart and norm will take priority over academic education, physical education and technological education. Accordingly, this will be education for the purpose of raising up people of goodness who will follow the heavenly way.[71]


    The 21st century invites us all to work together for global security. State security and human security will cooperate to realize a perpetual and universal concord. Ultimately, human security is people-to-people security, or the security of human beings, byhuman beings and for human beings.

    While protecting us from internal and external threats, its ideals should empower us to work for higher values. It starts with a decision in the heart of everyone to become more loving, more caring and more responsible, while knowing one’s rights and the rights of others.

    The family of true love is the model where we enjoy a greater freedom and a greater communion. It provides the foundation of universal brotherhood, of one human family under one God and for one earth. We may all become ambassadors for peace in our daily life. Then our homes, our communities, our nations and the whole world will become freer and safer.

    Those who decide to become ambassadors for peace may study their daily progress in three crucial areas: (1) spiritual-existential security, (2) relational-social security and (3) economic security. Progressing in the art of loving, we shall work to harmonize spiritual laws, human laws and natural laws, so that heaven, humankind and nature are integrated.


    [1]     Irenology comes from the Greek word Eirene. The verb eiro means to bind together that which has been separated. Eirene is closer to the Hebrew Shalom than the Latin word Pax.

    [2]     Jeffrey Ventola, BeautifulViolence: Polemos, Responsibility,andTragic Wisdom, Academia Letters, 2021. Beautiful_Violence_Polemos_Responsibility_and_Tragic_Wisdom

    [3]     Mohandas Karamchand GandhiSatyagraha in South Africa, (Navajivan: Jitendra T. Desai Navajivan Publishing House 1968), pp. 109–10.

    [4]     Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, Young India., 17-9-1925, p. 321.

    [5]     Gandhi, Young India 2-7-1931, p. 161.

    [6]     The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity (HSA-UWC) was founded in 1954 by Reverend Sun Myung Moon. The name “Family Federation for World Peace and Unification International” was adopted in 1996. In 2020, Mrs. Hak Ja Han Moon introduced the Holy Community of Heavenly Parent.

    [7]     The Family Pledge is the official prayer of the Holy Community of Heavenly Parent, consisting of 8 paragraphs. The first draft, presented in May 1994, was later enriched. For a complete explanation, see Joong Hyun Pak and Andrew Wilson, True Family Values, Third Edition(FFPWU, 2006).

    [8]     Exposition of the Divine Principle(HSA-UWC, 1996), The Principle of Creation, section III, page 34.

    [9]     Thomas Hobbes Leviathan, Penguin Books Ltd, 2017.Chapter XIII - Of the Natural Condition of Mankind as Concerning Their Felicity and Misery

    [10]   Surin Pitsuwan, the Secretary-General of ASEAN in 2008-2012, was quoting thinkers such as Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau and Hume to conclude that “human security is the primary purpose of organizing a state in the beginning.” Actually, Hobbes and Rousseau were clearly advocating State security, not human security.

    [11]   Dwight Eisenhower, Farewell Address to the Nation,” January 17, 1961

    [12]   The expression was first used by the British MP Iain Macleod in “what I like to call the nanny state” in the December 3, 1965 edition of The Spectator. Nanny state describes an overprotective government which interferes unduly with personal choice. The term likens such a government to the role that a nanny has in child rearing.

    [13]   Norman Boardman, “Mental Disarmament, ”The North American Review, June 1932, pp. 536-542.

    [14]   This Pakistani economist is considered “one of the visionaries of international development” by The Economist. He served as the Minister of Finance of Pakistan (1985-1986). His book, Reflections on Human Development (1995) opened new avenues to policy proposals for human development paradigms. He also published New Imperatives of Human Security (1995), A New Framework for Development Cooperation (1995) and Humanizing Global Institutions (1998)

    [15], p. 5


    [17]   Alexander and Sabina Lautensach, Human Security in World Affairs: Problems and Opportunities (2nd edition) see

    [18]   Sascha Werthes, Corinne Heaven and Sven Vollnhals Assessing Human Insecurity Worldwide: The Way to a Human (In)Security Index, INEF Report, 2011. See

    [19]   Idem, p. 5

    [20]   Human security studies sometimes refer to Abraham Maslow classification of human needs into physiological needs (directly required for survival), safety (health and well-being), love and belonging, social esteem and self-actualization.

    [21]   David A. Hastings, “The Human Security Index: An Update and a New Release,” p. 2.




    [25]   Sabina Alkire, “Working Paper: Conceptual Framework for Human Security,”2003, see

    [26], p. 5

    [27]   Speech at the UNESCO headquarters in April 2012

    [28]   The Dutch politician Ina Brouwer was the first to use the term poldermodel, in her 1990 article “Het socialisme als poldermodel?

    [29] See also the PowerPoint presentation of Takeshi Ishiara on

    [30]   Isabelle Filliozat, interview to Le Figaro, October 15, 2022

    [31]   Assessing Human Insecurity Worldwide: The Way to a Human (In)Security Index, INEF Report, 2011, p.11.



    [34]   The preamble of the UN charter says that the United Nations will work “to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom.”

    [35]   Alexander and Sabina Lautensach, Human Security in World Affairs: Problems and Opportunities, 2nd edition (2020), see

    [36]   Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, Young India, 6-8-25, p. 276

    [37]   Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, Young India, 29-1-25, pp. 40-41. Swaraj means home rule. For Gandhi, however, the meaning is not just political, it involves a strong spiritual and mystical component. 

    [38]   Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Creation and Fall Temptation: Two Biblical Studies(Touchstone, Reprint edition, March 12, 1997).

    [39]   Refer to footnote number 6 of the current essay.

    [40]   Alexander and Sabina Lautensach, op.cit., p. 88

    [41]   Exposition of the Divine Principle translates them as interdependence, mutual prosperity and universally shared values, whereas Essentials of Unification Thought(Unification Thought Institute, 2006)calls them mutual existence, mutual prosperity, mutual righteousness.

    [42]   Martin Luther King junior, “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,”

    [43]   Exposition of the Divine Principle, Parallels 7.2.3, pp. 334-335.

    [44]   Sigmund Freud introduced the topics of Eros and Thanatos in Beyond the Pleasure Principle (Jenseits des Lustprinzips) in 1920. The atrocities of World War I prompted Freud to modify his drive theory, which was mostly focusing on the drive of Eros and the regulation of libido that is governed by the pleasure principle. Freud theorized beyond the pleasure principle, newly considering the death drive, or Thanatos (the Greek personification of death), which refers to the tendency towards destruction and annihilation, often expressed through behaviors such as aggression, repetitive compulsion and self-destructiveness.



    [47]   Essentials of Unification Thought, Chapter III, p. 179,

    [48]   Exposition of the Divine Principle, Parallels 7.1, p. 328.

    [49]   General Douglas MacArthur, “Radio Broadcast to the Nation Following the USS Missouri Surrender Ceremony, ”delivered 2 September 1945, USS Missouri, Tokyo Bay, Japan,

    [50]   Exposition of the Divine Principle, Parallels 7.1, p. 328.

    [51]   Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, part 2, section 40, (Penguin, 1974).

    [52]  The Phenomenology of Spirit (Phänomenologie des Geistes) was published in 1807. Hegel described the work as an “exposition of the coming to be of knowledge.” This is explicated through a necessary self-origination and dissolution of “the various shapes of spirit as stations on the way through which spirit becomes pure knowledge.” Terry Pinkard rightly observes that this book has been praised and blamed for the development of Existentialism, communism, fascism, death of God theology, and historicistnihilism. Terry Pinkard, Hegel’s Phenomenology: The Sociality of Reason, (Cambridge University Press, 1996).

    [53]  Paul Ricœur coined the term “masters of suspicion” in reference to MarxFreud, and Nietzsche, who share a similar view that consciousness is false, in Freud and Philosophy(1965). False consciousness is a major theme of Marx’s theory of alienation and a constant leitmotif of Freudo-Marxism.

    [54]   Emil Cioran, The Trouble with Being Born(London: Penguin Modern Classics, 2013).

    [55]   Miguel de Unamuno, The Tragic Sense of Life (1913), I: The Man of Flesh and Bone, (Cosimo Classics, 2005).

    [56]   Vercors, Les Animaux Dénaturés, (Paris:Le Livre de Poche, 1975).

    [57]   Jean-Paul Sartre, Existentialism is a humanism, Yale University Press.

    [58]   Paul Tillich, The Courage to Be(New Haven: Yale University Press), p. 76.

    [59]   The Unification movement offers various programs to revive the faith in God. Counterproposals to Existentialism are exposed in the Essentials of Unification Thought, chapter 3

    [60]   Marxist-Leninist theories are discussed extensively in Sang Hun Lee, The End of Communism and the CAUSA Lecture Manual(

    [61]   Samuel Huntington, working in a field pioneered, among others, by Oswald Spengler, Arnold Toynbee, and Karl Jaspers, identified eight religious spheres. The Divine Principle suggests that the world is now organized around four great cultural spheres: the Judeo-Christian sphere, the Muslim Sphere, the Hindu Sphere and the Far East sphere; see EDP, Eschatology, 2.3 pp. 84-86) Tensions may exist, fuelled by political and economic rival interests, but if we turn our hearts toward God, harmony can be achieved.

    [62]   Ernest Renan, “What is a Nation,” lecture at Sorbonne University, 1882.

    [63]   The term numinous was coined by the German theologian and philosopher Rudolf Otto in his influential 1917 book The Idea of the Holy.

    [64]   “True Parents and the Realm of Liberation,” April 6, 1989. 890406.html

    [65]   Pope Francis speaking to Scholas Occurentes students, the Vatican, May 20, 2021

    [66]   He had strong connections with John Stuart Mill and they influenced each other. The British philosopher rejected the positivist catechism of Comte, however.

    [67]   Living for the sake of others is a leitmotif in the philosophy of peace of True Parents.

    [68]   “New Hope Farm Declaration,” April 3, 1995.

    [69]   Essentials, op.cit. p. 170.

    [70]   Romans 8:19-22

    [71] “New Hope Farm Declaration,” April 3, 1995.