The Realtionship Between God and the Universe
Learning Objective: Understand that God created the universe so that He could have an object partner he could relate to with love.
Divine Principle Reading:
We have learned that every creation is God’s substantial object partner, formed in His likeness as a discrete projection of His dual characteristics. God exists as the incorporeal subject partner to all beings. Human beings are object partners embodied at the level of image, and the rest of creation are object partners embodied at the level of symbol. These object partners are called individual embodiments of truth, in image and symbol.
Activity: Reflections of God
- Individual embodiment of truth are entities which reflect God’s dual characteristics. Every being that has dual characteristics is called an individual embodiment of truth.
- Sometimes the phrases in Divine Principle can be difficult to understand and remember, but the concepts are simple. The key point here is:
- Individual embodiment of truth = Reflection of God
2. Play a quick and silly game to get people comfortable with the phrasing “individual embodiment of truth.”
- Sit in a circle.
- Have the first person say “individual embodiment of truth” clearly and slowly.
- Have the next person say the same phrase, but a little faster.
- Continue this process in the circle until you can’t say the phrase any faster.
Concluding Point: Reflections of God’s dual characteristics are called individual embodiments of truth.
Divine Principle Reading:
In light of our understanding of the dual characteristics, the relationship between God and the universe can be summarized thus: The universe as a whole is a substantial object partner to God. It is composed of individual embodiments of truth, each a unique manifestation of the dual characteristics of God at either the level of image or of symbol, as governed by the Principle of Creation. The relationship between God and the universe is similar to that between internal nature and external form. It is a mutual relationship like that between dual characteristics: internal and external, cause and result, vertical and horizontal, subject partner and object partner, and so forth.
Activity: In Image and In Symbol
- Individual embodiment of truth in symbol: Creation was made as a symbol of God, so all of creation is called individual embodiments of truth in symbol.
- Ask the youth to choose one of the following scenes that makes them feel most inspired and then gather by these groups.
1. A white snowy plain
2. A blue seascape
3. A green mountain
4. A field of yellow flowers
2. Discuss in the groups formed from above:
- What inspires us about the scene that we chose?
- What parts of God do we see in the scene that we chose?
- Individual embodiment of truth in image: Human being were created in the direct image of God, so they are individual embodiments of truth in image.
4. Discuss in the same groups from before:
- What part of myself do I feel like is a reflection of God and why?
5. Play a game: In Image or In Symbol?
- Have person A point to person B in the circle and shout out a piece of creation or a person like “mountain” or “teacher”.
- Then person B must shout out the correct choice between “individual embodiment of truth in image” or “individual embodiment of truth in symbol” within 3 seconds. If they get it wrong or don’t do it fast enough then they are eliminated from the game.
- Then person B repeats the same person by pointing to person C and shouting out a piece of creation or a person.
- If it’s going well you can play a few rounds, but the point of this game is to just help everyone get comfortable with identifying individual embodiments of truth in image and symbol.
Concluding point: The heart of all creation is God. He is reflected in all that we can see or hear or touch in creation and in our experiences with others. God desires to have an ongoing and dynamic relationship with all parts of creation, especially with hu