For me, Swedenborg is the grandfather of today’s new spiritual consciousness. The Divine revelation he received back in the 18C is concerned with our awareness of the inner process of spiritual awakening and connecting to God. Swedenborg’s books contain a wonderland of ideas which help me to understand God, truth and the purpose of my life here.
Here are my current top 3:
1. God is Love
Swedenborg is clear that the nature of God is unconditional Love. For me the only reality is Love and because I came from this I know from experience that I am only truly happy when I can reconnect with this Love within myself. How do I do this? Different religions have different practices but whatever the practice, Swedenborg explains that what is needed is for there to be a union of love (compassionate heart) with truth (in our mind). This then leads to loving action in the world (hands).
Why don’t I live from Love all the time? Swedenborg explains that in order for us to freely choose to love, we are born with a sense of ‘self’ which gives us the illusion that we live from ourselves and are separate from God. (This is described in the Adam and Eve story.)
How do I deal with my mistaken thinking and destructive emotions which arise from my sense of being separate? Swedenborg points me to the Word of God, in particular the Bible, which contains in its words and stories the deepest truth about ourselves and God. So for example, the battles fought in the Old Testament correspond to what feel like inner battles I fight with my ego thinking when it tells me, for example, that I am better than someone else or of less worth.
This link to truth can also be seen in nature because as Swedenborg says, everything in nature corresponds to something of God’s spirit from which it comes. For example, I can perceive the deeper significance of light and dark, mountain and valley, lion and lamb and connect to God through these correspondences.
3. Spiritual World
Swedenborg was conscious in this world and the spiritual world at the same time. My reading of his accounts of the spiritual world has given me a strong belief in life after death. We are all created to be angels in heaven and are free to choose this awakened state of love at any time. All the thoughts and feelings which come into us are from the spiritual world; either loving heavenly ones, or negative, destructive ones from spirits who are stuck in these states. Knowing that I am not my thoughts and feelings unless I choose to identify with them is incredibly liberating!
Copyright 2010 Helen Newton
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