1 From James, a servant of God and of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Greetings to the twelve tribes scattered all over the world.[a]
2 My friends, be glad, even if you have a lot of trouble. 3 You know that you learn to endure by having your faith tested. 4 But you must learn to endure everything, so that you will be completely mature and not lacking in anything.
5 If any of you need wisdom, you should ask God, and it will be given to you. God is generous and won’t correct you for asking. 6 But when you ask for something, you must have faith and not doubt. Anyone who doubts is like an ocean wave tossed around in a storm. 7-8 If you are that kind of person, you can’t make up your mind, and you surely can’t be trusted. So don’t expect the Lord to give you anything at all.
4 The purest gold is ruined
and has lost its shine;
jewels from the temple
lie scattered in the streets.
2 These are Zion’s people,
worth more than purest gold;
yet they are counted worthless
like dishes of clay.
World Scripture and the Teachings of
Sun Myung Moon
God’s Creation and Human Creativity
Beauty abounds in nature: the majestic mountains, the delicate hues of a flower, the brilliant colors of a sunset, the sparkle of dew on the morning grass. there is harmony of shape and color, light and shadow, sound and silence.
Harmony is an aspect of beauty. harmony is inherent in the very structure of the universe. the ancients found mathematics to be the basis of music, and today scientists are learning more about the “music of the spheres” in the motions of the stars and the properties of the atom. singing birds and chirping insects sound nature’s music as they seek for love. they are expressing its inherent harmony; human music cannot compare with it. the dissonance of our fallen condition condemns us to strike discordant notes. Were that human beings as harmonious as nature!
Human beings, God’s supreme creations, should manifest supreme beauty. people sing, dance, and create beautiful art, but more than that, we find beauty in one another, in expressions of love. there is inner beauty in a loving couple, a filial child caring for aged parents, and a loyal citizen making sacrificial efforts for the welfare of his or her nation. the beauty that people manifest in these ways also glorifies God, who delights to see beauty abounding in his works. this inner beauty becomes apparent in the spirit world—where beauty abounds for those who are worthy.
- The Beauty of Nature
Nature is the art of God.
Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they
neither toil nor spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon
in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
God is beautiful and loves beauty
Hadith of Muslim (Islam)
It is God who has made for you the earth as a
resting place, and the sky as a canopy, and has
given you shape—and made your shapes beau-
tiful—and has provided for you sustenance of
things pure and good; such is God, your Lord.
So glory to God, the Lord of the Worlds!
Known by the name of Protectress
is the Goddess girt by Eternal Law;
by her beauty are these trees green
and have put on their green garlands.
Atharva Veda 10.8.31 (Hinduism)
The One who, Himself without color,
by the manifold application of His power
Distributes many colors in His hidden purpose,
And into whom, its end and its beginning, the
whole world dissolves—
He is God!
Svestasvatara Upanishad 4.1 (Hinduism)
Beauty is before me.
Beauty is behind me.
Beauty is below me.
Beauty is above me.
I walk in beauty.
Navajo Song (Native American Religions)
God created the seven heavens in harmony.
In the cosmic Void is He absorbed,
Where plays the unstruck mystic music—
Beyond expression is this miraculous wonder.
Adi Granth, Gauri Sukhmani 23.1,
M.5, p. 293 (Sikhism)
The origin of music lies far back in time. It arises
out of two poles: the two poles give rise to the
powers of darkness and light. The powers of dark-
ness and light undergo change; the one ascends
into the heights, the other sinks into the depths;
heaving and surging they combine to form bod-
ies. If they are divided they unite themselves
again; if they are united they divide themselves
again. That is the eternal way of heaven. Heaven
and earth are engaged in a circle. Every ending
is followed by a new beginning; every extreme is
followed by a return. Everything is coordinated
with everything else. Sun, moon, stars move in
part quickly, in part slowly. Sun and moon do
not agree in the time which they need to com-
plete their path. The four seasons succeed each
other, bringing heat and cold, shortness and
length, softness and hardness. That from which
all beings arise and in which they have their ori-
gin is the Great One; that whereby they form
and perfect themselves is the duality of dark-
ness and light… Sound arises out of harmony.
Harmony arises out of relatedness. Harmony
and relatedness are the roots from which music,
established by the ancient kings, arose.
Book of Ritual 19 (Confucianism)