본향 [ponhyang] (sino-korean)
本 (본) [pon] – original
郷 (향) [hyang] – town, village
What kind of place do we call the original homeland? Those who have had to leave their home know it well: the homeland is the place one wants to go, the place one wants to see, the place one wants to live. It is a place where both our soul and our body want to be.
So far throughout history, many people have lived and died who have yearned for, longed for, and admired such a homeland. Moreover, we should know that numerous believers and philosophers have made and are still making efforts to find that homeland.
The original homeland is a world where people understand each other. Such a world is not like our world of ideals and ideologies today. The original world cannot be viewed in the light of national, state, economic or cultural differences; it is outside all these frameworks and can only be viewed from the perspective of the heart (shimjeong).
The homeland is invariably our beloved parents, our beloved home, and our beloved brothers and sisters. When we leave our homeland and go abroad, the scope of the concept of “home” for us expands to include our country. If you look at it from the perspective of the universe, then this entire world will be our home. So, in the process of life, we can feel that the scale of the concept of “home” expands as our view of the world expands.
If there is a place on earth where the Heavenly Parent can settle and live with His family, that place becomes the original homeland of all humanity, for it truly represents all people. All people are brothers and sisters, and humanity is one big family.
We need to find the lost original homeland where our parents, brothers and sisters, and kin live. We need to find that very original place where they will meet us not in sorrow but in eternal joy and happiness, where joy will not be momentary but eternal.