Divine Love and Wisdom

Overview

Emanuel Swedenborg (born Emanuel Swedberg; January 29, 1688 - March 29, 1772) was a Swedish scientist, philosopher, Christian mystic and theologian. Swedenborg had a prolific career as an inventor and scientist. In 1741 at the age of fifty-three he entered into a spiritual phase in which he eventually began to experience dreams and visions beginning on Easter weekend April 6, 1744. This culminated in a spiritual awakening, whereupon he claimed he was appointed by the Lord to write a heavenly doctrine to reform ...
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Divine Love and Wisdom

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Overview

Emanuel Swedenborg (born Emanuel Swedberg; January 29, 1688 - March 29, 1772) was a Swedish scientist, philosopher, Christian mystic and theologian. Swedenborg had a prolific career as an inventor and scientist. In 1741 at the age of fifty-three he entered into a spiritual phase in which he eventually began to experience dreams and visions beginning on Easter weekend April 6, 1744. This culminated in a spiritual awakening, whereupon he claimed he was appointed by the Lord to write a heavenly doctrine to reform Christianity. He claimed that the Lord had opened his spiritual eyes, so that from then on he could freely visit heaven and hell, and talk with angels, demons and other spirits.
He said that the Last Judgement had already occurred, in 1757, though only visible in the spiritual world, where he had witnessed it. That Judgement was followed by the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, which occurred, not by Christ in person, but by a revelation from Him through the inner, spiritual sense of the Word to Swedenborg. In fact, Swedenborg said, it is the presence of that spiritual sense that makes the Word Divine.
The remaining 28 years of his life, he wrote and published 18 theological works, of which the best known was Heaven and Hell (1758), and several unpublished theological works.

In Life on Other Planets, Swedenborg stated that he conversed with spirits from Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, Saturn, Venus, and the moon. He did not report conversing with spirits from Uranus and Neptune, however, which were not discovered yet. This lack is seen by some to raise question about the credibility of all his reports on this matter. This issue has been extensively reviewed elsewhere.

Swedenborg explicitly rejected the common explanation of the Trinity as a Trinity of Persons, which he said was not taught in the early Christian Church. Instead he explained in his theological writings how the Divine Trinity exists in One Person, in One God, the Lord Jesus Christ, which he said is taught in Colossians 2:9. Swedenborg also rejected the doctrine of salvation through faith alone, since he considered both faith and charity necessary for salvation, not one without the other. The purpose of faith, according to Swedenborg, is to lead a person to a life according to the truths of faith, which is charity, as is taught in 1 Corinthians 13:13 and James 2:20.

Swedenborg's theological writings have elicited a range of responses. However, he made no attempt to found a church. A few years after his death - 15 by one estimate - for the most part in England, small reading groups formed to study the truth they saw in his teachings. As one scholar has noted, Swedenborg's teachings particularly appealed to the various dissenting groups that sprang up in the first half of the 19th century who were "surfeited with revivalism and narrow-mindedness" and found his optimism and comprehensive explanations appealing Several writers were influenced by him, including William Blake (though he ended up renouncing him), Elizabeth Barrett Browning, August Strindberg, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Charles Baudelaire, Adam Mickiewicz, Honoré de Balzac, William Butler Yeats, Sheridan Le Fanu, Jorge Luis Borges, Carl Jung and Helen Keller. Other notable figures who were adherents to his teachings were the theologian Henry James Sr., the artist George Inness, and mid-Western pioneer and nurseryman Johnny Appleseed.

His philosophy had a great impact to The Duke of Sodermanland, later King Carl XIII, who as the Grand master of Swedish Freemasonry (Svenska Frimurare Orden) built its unique system of degrees and wrote its rituals.
In contrast, one of the most prominent Swedish authors of Swedenborg's day, Johan Henrik Kellgren, called Swedenborg "nothing but a fool". A heresy trial was initiated in Sweden in 1768 against Swedenborg's writings and two men who promoted these ideas.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781461195399
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Publication date: 5/17/2011
  • Pages: 174
  • Sales rank: 1,028,636
  • Product dimensions: 8.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Meet the Author

Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) was a Swedish scientist, nobleman, and theologian who spent his life investigating the mysteries of the soul. Born in Stockholm to a staunchly Lutheran family, he graduated from the University of Uppsala and then traveled to England, Holland, France, and Germany to study the leading scientists of the time. He gained favor with Sweden’s King Charles XII, who gave him the position of overseer of the Swedish mining industry. Later, he was given a seat on the Swedish House of Nobles by Charles XII’s successor, Queen Ulrika Eleonora. Between 1743 and 1745 he began to have visions of heaven, hell, and Jesus Christ which resulted in a stream of books about the nature of God, the afterlife, and the inner meaning of the Bible. He devoted the last decades of his life to studying Scripture and presenting his own unique theology to the world.

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Read an Excerpt

“If you gather together everything that you know, focus your mind’s insight on it, and look through it carefully from some spiritual height to discover what is common to everything, the only conclusion you can draw is that it is love and wisdom. These two are essential to every aspect of our life. Everything we deal with that is civic, everything moral, and everything spiritual depends on these two things. Apart from them, there is nothing. The same holds true for everything in the life of that composite person who is our larger and smaller community, our monarchy or empire, the church, and also the angelic heaven. Take love and wisdom away from these collective bodies and ask whether there is anything left, and you will be struck by the fact that without love and wisdom as their source, they are nothing.

 

“No one can deny that in God we find love and wisdom together in their very essence. He loves us all out of the love that is within him, and he guides us all out of the wisdom that is within him.”

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