Rev. Sun Myung Moon

As a Peace-loving Global Citizen is the autobiography of Rev. Sun Myung Moon, the founder of the Unification Movement. It was published in 2009 in both Korean and English by Gimm-Young Publishers of Seoul, South Korea. The book was released in South Korea on March 9, 2009 and debuted at #3 on the Businesss bestseller's list. It has ranked in various bestseller lists since then and was ranked 15th on the General bestseller's list as of October 14, 2009.

The Joy of Giving Food to Others

       I will tell you something that happened when I was about eleven years old. It was toward the last day of the year, and everyone in the village was busy preparing rice cakes for the New Year’s feast. There was one neighbor family, though, that was so poor they had nothing to eat. I kept seeing their faces in my mind, and it made me so restless that I was walking around the house, wondering what to do. Finally, I picked up an eight-kilogram (17.6-pound) bag of rice and ran out of the house. I was in such a hurry to get the bag of rice out of the house that I didn’t even tie the bag closed. I hoisted the bag onto my shoulders and held it tight as I ran along a steep, uphill path for about eight kilometers (five miles) to get to the neighbor’s home. I was excited to think how good it would feel to give those people enough food so they could eat as much as they wanted.

       The village mill was next to our house. The four walls of the millhouse were well built, so that the crushed rice could not fall through the cracks. This meant that in the winter it was a good place to escape the wind and stay warm. If someone took some kindling from our home’s furnace and started a small fire in the millhouse, it became warmer than an ondol-heated room. Some of the beggars who would travel around the country would decide to spend the winter in that millhouse. I was fascinated by the stories they had to tell about the world outside, and I found myself spending time with them every chance I got. My mother would bring my meals to the millhouse, and she would always bring enough for my beggar friends to eat as well. We would eat from the same dishes and share the same blankets at night.  This is how I spent the winter. When spring came, they would leave for faraway places, and I could not wait for winter to come again so they would return to our home. Just because their bodies were poorly clothed did not mean that their hearts were ragged as well. They had a deep and warm love that showed. I gave them food, and they shared their love with me. The deep friendship and warmth they showed me back then continue to be a source of strength for me today.

       As I go around the world and witness children suffering from hunger, I am always reminded of how my grandfather never missed a chance to share food with others.