The Scripture of the Fo...


The Scripture of the Founding Master

Chapter Two: Doctrine


The Founding Master asked, “Now that we have opened a religious order, how can we correct all the abuses of the past and edify the world well with our new religion?” Pak Taewan replied, “Since all accomplishments start with what is close at hand, we must improve our own minds if we seek to improve the world.” Song Man’gyŏng replied, “Since our doctrines and institutions have already been established in accordance with the age, if we merely practice in accordance with our doctrines and institutions, the world will naturally be improved.” Cho Songgwang replied, “Even though I do not fully understand the profound intent of the Great Master, I believe that your dharma is so utterly perfect and impartial that all of humanity will be improved spontaneously in accordance with the cycle of great fortune (taeun) of the world.” The Founding Master responded, “What each of you has said is true. If people want to improve the world, they must first improve their own minds; and if they want to improve their own minds, there must be some dharma for doing so. Since we already have a dharma and you all understand the principles of our practice, you must exert more effort to actualize in your practice what we have discussed in this exchange today. If each religion is improved, then the people’s minds will be improved; and if people’s minds are improved, then governance in this nation and the world will be improved. Religion and government may address different areas, but at bottom they are inextricably related, together influencing good and evil in the world.”