1. The Duality of Spirit and Matter

 

Know that prakriti (nature, energy) and Purusha (spirit) are both without beginning, and that from prakriti come the gunas (qualities of the phenomenal world) and all that changes. Prakriti is the agent, cause, and effect of every action, but it is Purusha that seems to experience pleasure and pain. Purusha, resting in prakriti, witnesses the play of the gunas born of prakriti. But attachment to the gunas leads a person to be born for good or evil. Within the body the supreme Purusha is called the witness, approver, supporter, enjoyer, the supreme Lord, the highest Self... Whatever exists, Arjuna, animate or inanimate, is born through the union of the field and its Knower.

Bhagavad-Gita 13.19-22, 26 (Hinduism)

 

By a marvelous mating, He brings a spiritual nature into union with one that is material and makes the soul and body active and passive principles, respectively, of a single human whole. This operation of God, so marvelous and mysterious, He performs not only in the case of man, who is a rational animal and the highest and noblest of all animals on earth, but also in the case of the tiniest insects. And no one can reflect on this marvel without a sense of astonishment and some expression of admiration for the Creator.

Saint Augustine, City of God 22.24 (Christianity)

 

“Everything that is created has a spiritual and material aspect and it’s wonderful. Even if human beings would try to create like God, we wouldn’t be able to achieve the same result.”

 

Our body is just a shell. Inside and outside, there is nothing but the energy of heaven and earth, and yin and yang.

Chu Hsi (Confucianism)

 

“It is a very old passage but already at that time, there was the understanding of energy.”

 

Teachings of Sun Myung Moon

 

The human body consists of 40 trillion cells. They are connected by the body’s circulatory system that is constantly in motion, with blood circulating through arteries and veins. At the same time, electrical energy circulates up and down through the nervous system. In sum, the body contains dual systems of circulation: one visible, the other invisible.

(262:126, July 23, 1994)

 

“The electricity is invisible and makes us possible to move. The human body is extremely well made.”

 

There is another pair of dual characteristics in reciprocal relationship, which are even more fundamental to existence than the dual characteristics of yang and yin. Every entity possesses both an outer form and an inner quality. The visible outer form resembles the invisible inner quality. The inner quality, though invisible, possesses a certain structure that manifests visibly in the particular outer form...

Let us take human beings as an example. A human being is composed of an outer form, the body, and an inner quality, the mind. The body is a visible reflection of the invisible mind. Because the mind possesses a certain structure, the body that reflects it also takes on a particular appearance. This is the idea behind a person’s character and destiny being perceived through examining his outward appearance by such methods as physiognomy or palm reading. Here, mind is the internal nature (sungsang) and body is the external form (hyungsang). Mind and body are two correlative aspects of a human being; hence, the body may be understood as a second mind. Together, they constitute the dual characteristics of a human being. Similarly, all beings exist through the reciprocal relationships between their dual characteristics of internal nature and external form...

The body resembles the mind and moves according to its commands in such a way as to sustain life and pursue the mind’s purposes. Mind and body thus have a mutual relationship of internal and external, cause and result, subject partner and object partner, vertical and horizontal.

Similarly, all created beings, regardless of their level of complexity, possess an intangible internal nature, which corresponds to the human mind, and a tangible external form, which corresponds to the human body. Within each being, the internal nature, which is causal and subject, commands the external form. This relationship allows the individual being to exist and function purposefully as a creation of God.

(Exposition of the Divine Principle, Creation 1.1)

 

“We can read a part of the character in the facial traits of a person. It should be like that: when we have a goal, the body wants to follow and accomplish it.”

“Only a few people in the world know what their purpose of life is.”

“There’s an important relationship between the mind and the body. If we do a good action with our body, we get energy. When we don’t do anything, we don’t get energy and we feel not valued.”

 

This created world in which we live has two axes: a visible axis and an invisible axis. They form a dual structure. The object partner revolves around its subject partner, but the subject partner also revolves. An example is the body and mind of a human being engaging in give-and-take action. All beings exist according to this principle.

Fallen humans in the world must correct their axis in order to be restored. The correct human structure has the mind at the center of the body and the spirit dwelling in the center of the mind. The body revolves around the mind and moves in accordance with the mind’s commands. If his mind says, “Go to the east,” his body heads east, and if his mind says, “Go to the west,” his body heads west. His body cannot make a move by itself.

(136:14, December 20, 1985)

 

“We can create robots that can move or do actions but what will miss is the heart. The spirit is the most important part of the human being and needs to be developed.”

 

 

Written by Noëmie Komagata-Nguyen