Splendid Answer

In June 2000 a historic north-south summit meeting was held in Pyongyang.

When the agreement on the joint declaration was announced, everyone present at the banquet was jubilant as if reunification itself had been realized.

Pointing to a picture on the wall opposite the table of honour, Chairman Kim Jong Il asked the guests from south Korea whether the picture depicted a morning glow or an evening glow.

After racking his brain for the answer, a south Korean minister eventually responded: It portrays a rising sun, symbolic of the bright future of the Korean nation.

The guests present there all nodded at his answer.

Unexpectedly, however, the Chairman shook his head and said that the glow in the picture was both a sunrise and a sunset.

His answer was so simple and yet correct that they could only admire him. They realized what he said was too significant to be a mere witty humorous remark–every judgement depends on one’s viewpoint, and the success of every undertaking is decided by one’s resolve.

If all the fellow countrymen were united in one mind under the banner of the declaration, the future of the nation would be as bright as the rosy, rising sun. On the contrary, the prospects for national reunification would be as murky as the evening if the declaration was not implemented, just remaining as a mere sheet of paper.

At the Chairman’s remarks of philosophical depth the south Korean guests were compelled to look back at their past standpoint towards the issue of reunification.

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