May 1, 2017

Man Is Not Life, But A Receptacle Of Life From God

From True Christian Religion ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
Who does not see, when he is able to think from reason elevated above the sensual things of the body, that life is not creatable? For what is life but the inmost activity of the love and wisdom that are in God and are God, which life, indeed, may be called the essential living force? He who sees this can also see that this life cannot be transferred into any man, except in connection with love and wisdom. Who denies or can deny that every good of love and every truth of wisdom is solely from God, and that so far as man receives these from God he lives from God, and is said to be born of God, that is, regenerated? On the other hand, so far as one does not receive love and wisdom, or what is the same, charity and faith, he does not receive from God the life that is life in itself, but life from hell, and this is no other than inverted life which is called spiritual death.

From the foregoing it can be perceived and concluded that the following things are not creatable, namely:

    (1) The infinite is not.
    (2) Love and wisdom are not.
    (3) Consequently life is not.
    (4) Light and heat are not.
    (5) Even activity itself viewed in itself is not.
But organs receptive of these are creatable and have been created.
These statements may be illustrated by the following comparisons:
    Light is not creatable, but its organ, the eye, is
    Sound, which is an activity of the atmosphere, is not creatable, but its organ, the ear
    Heat, which is the primary active principle, for the reception of which all things in the three kingdoms of nature have been created, and according to this reception are acted upon, but do not act
It is from the order of creation, that wherever there are actives there are also passives, and that these two should join themselves together as a one. If actives were creatable as passives are there would have been no need of the sun, and heat and light from it, but all created things would have permanent existence without these. But if these should be taken away the created universe would lapse into chaos.

The sun itself of this world consists of created substances, the activity of which produces fire. These things are presented for the sake of illustration. It would be the same with man, if spiritual light, which in its essence is wisdom, and spiritual heat, which in its essence is love, did not flow into man and were not received by him. The entire man is nothing but a form organized to receive light and heat, both from the natural world and from the spiritual world, for these two worlds correspond to each other. If it were denied that man is a form receptive of love and wisdom from God, influx would also be denied, and thus that all good is from God. Conjunction with God would also be denied, and consequently, that man can be an abode and temple of God would be an expression devoid of meaning.

(True Christian Religion 471,472)