Exercise Homework 1: The Visible Body
The Dual Universe: Time and Eternity
Our Spiritual Barcode
The Spiritual Dimension of Neologisms
The Evolution of Neo Consciousness
Raising our Consciousness by Thinking in Correspondences
The Battle of Heaven and Hell in Our Mind
The Mental Zone of Resuscitation
Spiritual Garfinkeling -- Engineering Our Mental States on the Daily Round
Taxonomy of Unregenerate and Regenerate Loves in the Natural Mind
The Anatomy of Spiritual Combat in Temptation
Quotes From the Swedenborg Reports on the Organic Basis of Mind
Related Spiritual Ideas on the Organic Basis of Consciousness
This electronic book published in 2008 is a kind of 'executive summary' of my efforts to build a foundation for theistic psychology, which I began in its current approach in 2000, after 20 years of studying the Swedenborg Reports. Its most recent expression, prior to this one, is available from my Lecture Notes.
If I had heard this sentence prior to 1981 I would have thought "O yeah, sure. What does that mean?" My education as a Ph.D. and as a scientist in psychology, did not prepare me for an answer, did not give me an answer to this all important subject of what happens to me when I die. This is a subject that intensely interests me, so much so, that it took me decades to learn that only some people would show real interest in the answer to this question. This book provides the definitive and scientific answer to what happens to us at death, and also provides the answer to why and how it is that the majority of people are not intensely interested in the answer.
Our first hurdle may be the biggest for some, but only small for others. We have been educated to think about science within the negative mode of science, rather than the positive bias mode of science. The negative bias mode is called monism or materialism, while the positive bias mode is called dualism and theism. When we, as scientists or scientists in training, now hear about the new concepts and ideas called "theistic psychology," we react with rejection, aversion, and spiritual venting. These affective or emotional reactions call forth thoughts of disconfirmation and ridicule, at first, and later, thoughts of how to prove these concepts wrong for science and in science.
But the new field of theistic psychology puts these concepts right in front of our focus, and challenges us to comprehend it rationally. In order to do that, readers or students are asked to switch from the negative bias mode in science to the positive bias mode in science. The challenge includes the promise or intention to lay out the empirical scientific facts and the integrated rational explanations, that will permit the average reader or student to decide whether it makes rational sense to them, or not. This is the challenge that must be faced at the start. Further, there is also the intentionality and claim in theistic psychology, that it does not contain explanations of religions or their doctrinal beliefs. This has been excluded from the methodology of theistic psychology. Some people may be puzzled by this claim, in view of the fact that theistic psychology is knowledge "extracted from the correspondential sense of Sacred Scripture."
The difficulty is resolved when you consider that all religions are based on the literal sense of the Sacred Scripture that they call their own. No religion is based on the correspondential sense of Sacred Scripture. But theistic psychology is. It is based on the correspondential sense exclusively. This methodology insures a discrete and complete separation between religion and theistic psychology.
I invite you to step out of the negative bias mode of thinking about science and God, and to step into the positive bias thinking of theistic science. You are not giving up anything, and you stand to gain a lot, as I have when I first started reading the Swedenborg Reports -- the only existing fully scientific and empirical account of the spiritual world and the afterlife of eternity.
I will share my greatest discovery on this topic, namely, that we are born into eternity, and that we have already been in eternity since our birth. We are therefore immortal beings. To be born into eternity means immortality, since what is born into eternity is eternal, by definition, and what is eternal is immortal.
What about "eternal" makes us immortal?
The concept of "eternal" contains two components: one is "outside time"; the other is "mental."
Phenomena that exist "outside time," by definition, exist in eternity. And what has been generally unknown in science until the Swedenborg Reports in the 18th century, is the empirical fact discovered by him, that "eternity" is the mental world that is familiar to every human being since birth.
That's right. It's an awesome discovery that will shake the modern mind from its current historical trend of materialism in science. Today, under the philosophy of the negative bias materialism, psychology cannot learn anything from the Swedenborg Reports, even though these 37 volumes have been around in several languages for the past 200 years. Swedenborg in Sweden published his book Rational Psychology (1743) more than a century before German psychologist Wundt opened the first modern laboratory of psychology in Germany. Swedenborg published several books on the physiology of sensation and on brain neurology. He was the first in history to conclude correctly that the left hemisphere of the brain functions in correspondence with the cognitive organ (thinking, reasoning), and the right brain with the affective organ (intention, perception).
Swedenborg discovered by direct observation that the mental world of eternity, where every person's mind resides since birth, is a large expanse in the shape of the human body. This expanse is filled with the human race. Every individual's mind resides somewhere in this Grand Human expanse. The location of each person can be specified by the anatomical structure relative to others. For instance, Swedenborg would indicate where his mental travels took him across the expanse of the Grand Human, by saying that he was "in the province of the right eye," or, "under the foot," or "in the gall bladder," etc. In each mental place, Swedenborg was able to talk to the people that lived there in full conscious awareness. He discovered that there was a perfect and exact correspondence between the quality of the ruling love of each person and the function of the organ in the anatomical region of the Grand Human in which they were living. The people living in the region of the gall bladder had an entirely different personality than the people who lived in the heart or lungs of the Grand Human. "Mental harshness" corresponds to the "harsh" chemical treatment of digested food in the gall bladder, where it is stripped and separated of non-digestibles. "Mental conjunction" or "spiritual love" corresponds to the "nourishing" and life-giving action of the heart and its circulatory system, which feeds every cell in the body.
Swedenborg's discovery is critical for the continued scientific development of psychology. The Swedenborg Reports provide us with an empirical methodology for the study of mind through its correspondences with the body.
The reason Swedenborg has been completely omitted from the history of psychology is that all his science is theistic, and there is no room for theistic science in non-theistic science.
This is not the idea that Swedenborg believed in God. Half or more of all scientists alive today say that they believe in God. The problem is not that scientists believe or don't believe in God. The problem has to do with scientific methodology. There are two varieties: the non-theistic methodologies and the theistic methodologies.
Swedenborg discovered by direct observation that the mental world of eternity contains a Spiritual Sun, only one. In the physical world of time, the star or "natural sun" of a solar system, is the origin of the planets in that system. All the physical objects on our earth, including our physical body, is made of materials from the natural sun. This natural phenomenon corresponds exactly to the phenomenon of the Spiritual Sun in the mental world of eternity. Everything in eternity is made of substances from the Spiritual Sun. Our mind is made of these substances. These spiritual substances are living and immortal. There are two broad categories of spiritual substances radiating out of the Spiritual Sun and filling the entire mental world of humanity. One is called "spiritual heat" and the other "spiritual light." This corresponds to the "natural heat" and "natural light" that streams out of the natural sun to create objects, energy, movement, and life on the planet.
Our mental life is an organic process that begins at birth and continues endlessly in eternity. Life must have an organic basis. Mental life is carried out by mental organs. These organs are made of the substances from the Spiritual Sun. At birth, every human being lives in two bodies simultaneously that are connected together by correspondence. We have a physical body that is temporary and is made of natural substances from the physical sun. And we have a spiritual body that is permanent and is made of spiritual substances from the Spiritual Sun. Our spiritual body contains our mental organs.
We have three systems of mental organs, corresponding to the three systems of physical organs.
natural anatomy and physiology
in the mental world of eternity
in the mental world of eternity
mental anatomy and physiology
heart, blood vessels, blood, lymphatic, digestive, reproductive, endocrine, biochemical, genetic
reception of spiritual heat, loves, motives, intentions, enjoyment, pleasure, fun, perceptions, impulses, preferences, conscience, attachments, relationships, togetherness, conjunction, marriage, socialization of feelings and emotions, value-attachment and ranking, goal-directedness
lungs, bronchial, larynx, mouth, tongue, lips, teeth, vocal cords
reception of spiritual light, thoughts, imagination, variety of intelligences, inventiveness, understanding of truth, rationality, language, abstract reasoning, morality, science, socialization of thinking
brain, sensory organs, bones, joints, muscles, skin, hair, nails
receptivity to sensory information, experiencing sensations, maintaining situational vigilance, variety of motor readiness, motor skills and habits of performance, speaking and listening, writing and texting
The above is a general classification of mind-body correspondences.
The above indicates that the circulatory system in the spiritual body is nothing but the affective organ. Further, the respiratory system in the spiritual body is nothing but the cognitive organ. Finally, the neural-skeletal system in the spiritual body is nothing but the sensorimotor organ. This relationship of correspondence is an important research method for discovering and charting mental anatomy. The physical body is the window to the mind. The body is the visible mind. The temporary physical body is a perfect copy or model in physical matter, of the spiritual body which is permanent and eternal. By studying the anatomy of the physical body we are enabled to chart the development and evolution of the mind and its consciousness.
Go to http://www.visiblebody.com/ and register. Then learn to use the Visible Body application. It takes several hours to explore all that it can do. While learning the anatomy of the body, keep thinking that these anatomical structures and interrelations are the visible mind.
Explore the circulatory system (Hide Others). See how it is in the shape of the body. You are seeing the affective organ, whose operations are the source of your feelings, loves, and motives -- hence our very life. Our very life is nothing but our loves, and your loves are the operations of the affective organ, which is the circulatory system of the spiritual body. The circulatory system or affective organ, is the central lifeline of everything human and living. The other systems of the mind are derivative of this and dependent on this for mental nourishment and consciousness. Explore the heart. You are seeing the ruling loves of a person, or of humanity as a whole. The ruling love disposes all other loves, and the loves together dispose all thinking and intelligence that belong to the cognitive organ or respiratory system.
Explore the respiratory system by itself (Hide Others). You are seeing the cognitive organ of thinking and reasoning, imagining and knowing. Explore how the heart and the lungs are connected and how they act together. You are seeing the interdependence between the affective (A) and cognitive organs (C), between how our thinking and reasoning (C) are influenced or determined by our motives and needs (A). Note that the heart in the spiritual body (our loves) could not live or survive on their own. If the blood is prevented from flowing through the lungs it cannot be oxygenated, and in that case all its nutrients are useless to the cells and everything dies. This is in exact correspondence to the interdependence between our loves (A) and our thoughts (C). Our loves (A) act upon our thoughts (C) in order to produce our sensations and motor determinations (S). The circulatory system acts upon the respiratory system to produce or enable sensory perception and motor action.
Moving your finger in the physical body (layer 12), requires a determination from your sensorimotor system (9S) in the spiritual body (layer 10). This sensorimotor determination to move your finger (layer 9S) is produced by the conjunction or co-action of your affective organ (9A) with your cognitive organ (9C). This may be expressed as:
9A --> 9C --> 9S --> 12 (finger moves)
There must first be a motive (A) in the circulatory system of the spiritual body in layer 9. For instance, you are typing at the keyboard and coming to the end of your sentence. Now your finger moves over to the period key and presses it. You had to have a motivation (A) to press that particular key. Your motivation was to end the sentence you were typing. This connects with the love (A) you have of communicating with someone or finishing writing something. This love you have is nothing else than the operation of your affective organ, which is the circulatory system of your spiritual body.
The love of communicating or completing your sentence, cannot exist on its own, cannot be anything on its own. In order for this love to have an existence in your affective organ, it must connect with thinks in your memory or knowledge that are in your cognitive organ (C). In the Swedenborg Reports this is called the connection between "the will and the understanding." or, the connection between "good and truth." This connection or conjunction is called the "spiritual marriage." It is the spiritual force in eternity that corresponds to the natural force of gravity in time. All movement and relative position in the physical world is ultimately determined by gravity. This corresponds to the mental world of eternity where the quality and level of all human consciousness is given by people's relative position in the Grand Human (S), which is the product of their love (A) conjoined with their understanding (C). The AC connection, or spiritual marriage, engenders the totality of our living (S). What we call "heaven" (Grand Human) or "hell" (Grand Monster) are the externalized sensorimotor (S) appearances produced by the internal marriage between our loves (A) and our thoughts (C). Love produces everything in eternity; in eternity everything is produced by our loves.
Here are some additional body-mind correspondences:
Beating the chest = feeling sorry, repenting or: being proud of oneself
Beating the chest = feeling sorry, repenting or: being proud of
Burning, boiling = feeling angry, passionate
Covered = secret, having a plan to deal with it ("I've got it covered")
Drinking = learning, believing ("He is drinking it all in")
Eating bread = to nourish the mind
Food = operations in the affective organ, love, affection, charity
Left hand = mentally incapable ("He's got two left hands")
Paying taxes in a democracy = the effort we are willing to put into our character reformation
Ruminating = thinking about it, reflecting, considering
She's the pupil of his eye = cares a lot for her
Standing on the head = thinking and believing the opposite of truth
Taste = choices ("He has good taste in clothes")
Teeth = power ("that amendment has no teeth in it")
Tied up in knots = feeling disturbed or conflictual
To be hitched = to be married, mentally conjoined
Washing the body = repenting, cleansing or purifying the mind from evil traits
Wine = "faith", rational faith, positive bias in science, affirmative principle towards Sacred Scripture
More at: Correspondences in Our Thinking and Language
Now here are more specific mind-body anatomical correspondences.
|NERVOUS AND SKELETAL
IN THE HEAVENLY ORDER
IN THE HELLISH ORDER
HEART, ARTERIES, REPRODUCTIVE ORGANS
LUNGS, BREATHING, LIPS, CHEEKS
HANDS, EYES, RIGHT BRAIN, CEREBELLUM, RIB CAGE, THIGHS
love from God.
Conjunction with God through His Divine Human Omniproprium.
Love of innocence and children.
Love of fidelity. Altruism.
Perceiving interior rational truths.
Inspiring in people good thoughts and dreams.
Inspiring in people the love of good.
|(SEE LAYER 9)|
STOMACH, LIVER, MASTICATION, ASSIMILATION
ESOPHAGUS, MOUTH CAVITY, SMELL, TONGUE, TASTE
INTERIOR OF NOSTRILS , EARS, LEFT BRAIN
reasoning about truths and doctrines.
Inspiring people who are seeking to understand truths and strengthen conscience.
Helping people in spiritual combat during regeneration efforts.
|(SEE LAYER 8)|
NUTRITIONAL EXCHANGE IN CELLS
RESPIRATION, OXYGENATION, AIR SACS
|Practicing the human
virtues in community life.
Inspiring people with being useful.
Inspiring people to acquire motor skills.
Inspiring in people the rational foundations for aesthetics, art, sports, civics.
|(SEE LAYER 7)|
SPLEEN, PANCREAS, BLOOD, ARTERIES, VEINS, CAPILLARIES
HANDS, OUTWARD SKIN OR LINING OF ALL INTERNAL ORGANS
|Practicing the unity
model of marriage and striving to attain eternal conjugial love.
Motivated to master the mental environment.
Religious or spiritual views based on what is rationally understandable.
Puts importance on cooperating with God in one's regeneration for eternity.
Values thinking from scientific dualism and theistic psychology.
Values sincerity, spiritual responsibility, rationality, diligence, altruism.
|Hating conjugial love and
desiring to pervert the institution of marriage.
Opposing and subverting moral virtues in community life and engaging in hurtful practices as a lifestyle.
Inspiring people with the enjoyment of selfish traits.
Inspiring people to dislike healthy activity and eating habits.
Inspiring in people the desire and enjoyment of tearing down the rational foundations for aesthetics, art, sports, civics, etc., in order to pervert or destroy their goodness and rationality.
GALL BLADDER, KIDNEYS, URETHRA, BLADDER
NEURONS, FEET, SKIN, BONES, CARTILAGE, MUSCLES, TENDONS
|Practicing the equity
model of marriage.
Motivated to master the social environment.
Abstract thinking from materialism and negative bias in science.
Religious or spiritual views based on mystery, blind faith, authority, history, tradition.
Love of legalism, egalitarianism, symbolism, idealism.
Concerned with parity, duty, honor, recognition, glory, achievement.
Valuing honesty, social responsibility, patriotism.
|Practicing the male dominance
model under the guise of equity.
Love of reasoning about spiritual ideas in order to justify their chosen persuasions which consist of falsified truths and hurtful practices.
Love of inspiring people to deny or falsify Sacred Scripture, and to kill the conscience by attacking it and ignoring it.
Love of influencing people who are in spiritual combat during regeneration in order to get them to give in to their temptation.
SOLES OF THE FEET, HEEL
|Practicing the male
dominance model of marriage.
Motivated to master the physical environment.
Desire to punish and suppress individual freedoms.
Spirituality based on ancestor worship, saints and holy objects, miracles supernatural events, and on persuasive teachings. Authoritarian and strict parenting and schooling.
Perverting conjugial love to promiscuity and
Note that this chart gives the correspondential connection between organs in the spiritual body and our sensations (S), thoughts (C), and feelings (A). Note that we have a threefold self at each of the six layers. When you look at the mentality themes at each layer you can notice that they arrange themselves so as to match the physiological functions of each body part or zone.
See if you can use this chart to locate your mental states in the course of a normal day. What proportion of time do you spend in the three heavenly mentality zones and in the three hellish mentality zones. Study the characteristics of the heavenly and hellish order in layers 7, 8, 9. (More discussion on this in the Mental anatomy Lecture Notes)
One might think that so far, Swedenborg's dualist psychology might have been acceptable enough to receive mention in the history of psychology textbooks taught to psychology majors and graduate students today. But that is not the case. The reason becomes clear when you consider what is the Spiritual Sun, and what are its spiritual substances out of which our mental organs are constructed.
Swedenborg observed that every person goes through a dying-resuscitation process that separates the connection between our physical body and our spiritual body. The process lasts about 30 hours starting from the complete cessation of all life in the physical body either by medical death, or violent and accidental death. Swedenborg himself underwent the dying-resuscitation process so that he could describe it as an eye-witness. He interviewed thousands of people immediately after they were awakened from the resuscitation process. These included strangers and people he was acquainted with personally. Everyone awakened in the spiritual body remembers their identity and life, but they now speak a universal thought-language that spontaneously comes out as they think or desire to communicate with others. Everyone can also see the Spiritual Sun.
The spiritual body contains the mental organs at several discrete layers of anatomy, as will be discussed next in detail. In summary, the spiritual body contains the natural mind and the spiritual mind. The natural mind is conscious until the dying-resuscitation process begins, and then the spiritual mind takes over at resuscitation. Until resuscitation, the spiritual mind is unconscious, so that all our consciousness is focused on the natural mind. But after resuscitation there is a physiological change so that the natural mind and our outward social personality is gradually being "decommissioned" or "put out of circulation." We then continue our life of immortality in eternity by means of our conscious life in the spiritual mind.
Our mental organs are not only constructed out of spiritual heat and light from the Spiritual Sun, but they are also activated by them. This corresponds to the phenomenon in the physical world that if you prevent sunlight and heat from the natural sun from reaching the planet, everything perishes and the planet becomes a dead planet. All plant life depends on continuous radiation from the physical sun, and the weather system that it causes in the atmosphere. This corresponds to the phenomenon in the mental world of eternity, whereby our mental organs and their operations of feelings, thoughts, and sensations, would cease and disappear if the radiation from the Spiritual Sun stopped.
Now the final point: What is this endless stream of spiritual heat and light coming out of the Spiritual Sun?
Spiritual heat is nothing else than Divine Love or Good, and spiritual light is nothing else than Divine Truth or Wisdom.
Now you can see the fundamental and unavoidable theistic aspect of the Swedenborg Reports.
This is one of the most astonishing facts of science that has ever come to human knowledge. Our mental organs are constructed, activated, and directed by God through God's Divine Love as spiritual heat, and through Divine Truth as spiritual light. The mental world of eternity is an expanse created, activated, and directed by God through love and truth substances.
This is a difficult rational concept to understand at first, because we think of love and truth as conditions or states of the body, or the mind, but not as substances like heat or light. After our resuscitation we will be able to look straight at the Spiritual Sun and experience the actuality of good and truth streaming into our spiritual body and activating our loves, thoughts, and sensations. Swedenborg found out that the people who dwell in the highest layer of the mental world, which is closest to the Spiritual Sun (layer 4), are conscious of the "influx" of heat and light as they gaze at the Spiritual Sun. Swedenborg also looked at Spiritual Sun and describes it as thousands of times brighter than the noon day sun in summer we experience here. The physical sun rays blind our eyes, but the rays of the Spiritual Sun have the opposite effect -- they clarify one's thinking and warm our heart with happiness from its heat of love and good. The spiritual light, which is Divine Truth exiting from God, is received by the people in layer 4 as quasi-omniscience, that is, whatever you think about while in that light, you can understand rationally and scientifically, spontaneously knowing everything that is knowable about it.
The reality described in the Swedenborg Reports show that God is at the center of every phenomenon in both worlds. The two worlds are connected, point by point, by means of the laws of correspondences that are a central part of creation. It is not possible for science to discuss reality without describing the direct hands on role of God in that reality. Every existing physical object, and every existing mental operation, are directed or managed by God from within their inmost structure and substance, which is spiritual heat and light from the Spiritual Sun. God's feelings and thinking are therefore at the center of every phenomenon, that is, the origin and cause of every phenomenon. In terms of reality and existence, God's love and truth first enter the mental world of eternity in its highest layer (4), then descend or exteriorize through all the mental layers, and finally exist into the natural world of time where it creates every object and makes it to come into existence in a way and pattern that follows and brings about God's order and purpose.
In the Swedenborg Reports God reveals that His purpose for creating and maintaining the universe is
(1) to arrange for human beings to develop a natural mind on planets in the physical world,
(2) which allows their spiritual mind to be opened and activated after resuscitation,
(3) so that they can lead an endless life of conjugial happiness with a soul mate,
(4) which is communicated mutually to all who live in the Grand Human,
(5) so that the overall happiness of the human race continues to increase endlessly to eternity.
God's purpose is activated by God's Divine Love, which is to create people and make them evolve to ever grander happiness and intelligence, endlessly, forever. And all this is accomplished through God's Divine Truth, which is the source of human rationality and intelligence. The more we are in order with God's purpose and order, the more we experience this grand life, and the sooner. We can solve the problems of society and mind that non-theistic psychology has been unable to do so far. The positive-bias in science and the Swedenborg Reports have been made available to all people to further this Divine purpose for the world and humankind.
Even if traditional non-theistic psychology were to admit and accept the mind-body dualism of the Swedenborg Reports, it would encounter the other intellectual barrier, which is the barrier of "God" as a concept in science.
To by-pass this intellectual barrier we need to adopt the positive-bias in science.
The negative-bias in science is called a "bias" because it is not dependent on the proof that God does not exist, or that the concept of God cannot function in science. The negative-bias science is materialistic in its foundations, hence it rejects dualism (eternity outside time) and God. Both are rejected without proof, hence we can call it the negative-bias of materialism in science. Similarly, the positive-bias in theistic psychology is not dependent on any proof that God exists, or that Swedenborg's reports of resuscitation are correct and valid. No such proof is possible within a materialistic perspective. Hence it is called the positive-bias of theistic dualism.
However, thought there is no proof either way, there are many empirical facts reported by Swedenborg, thanks to his ability to be conscious in his spiritual mind, simultaneously with his normal consciousness in his natural mind. This was the first time in human history that a modern scientist was given the opportunity of collecting observational evidence of the dying process, and of the life immortal that begins at resuscitation. At age 57, in the middle of an active and successful scientific and engineering career in Sweden, Swedenborg awoke one day feeling very strange, hearing and seeing things, being confused. After a few days however, he realized that his spiritual consciousness was present along with his natural consciousness. He was able to see and observe people in the afterlife, even as he was carrying on his busy life as a government engineer, prominent legislator, and publisher of scientific works and inventions.
He found himself with dual consciousness -- aware of his natural world surroundings as before, but in addition, aware of the surroundings of those who pass on, resuscitate, and continue their life in the spiritual mind and body. When each of us are resuscitated, we will be able to confirm all of Swedenborg's observations. Until then we need to approach the Swedenborg Reports without proof, in the positive-bias orientation, so that we can give it a serious examination (positive-bias in science), rather than reject it out of hand as impossible (negative-bias in science).
The examination of the Swedenborg Reports in the positive-bias mode does not mean that we are going to merely accept uncritically what they describe.
We must apply the tools of rational and scientific thinking as we examine the Swedenborg evidence.
Do the descriptions and their explanations make rational sense
Do they hold together consistently into an overall integrated system of scientific explanation
Do any of the descriptions or explanations contradict each other
Are the explanations usable for the phenomena and events we can observe around us in the physical and social world
Are there any philosophers and scientists who have read these reports and accepted them
Did Swedenborg have a good reputation as a man and scientist
Did any of his contemporaries read him and agree with him
How scientific are the explanations of mental phenomena, how detailed, how mechanistic and functional
Are the cause-effect interactions explained rationally
Can the knowledge be applied to current issues and problems
Is research possible
Are there factual data, or experimental set ups with variables being manipulated
Empirically specific enough to be testable with data and observations
Organic (like biology, anatomy, physiology), so that every piece can be isolated and studied on its own as well as its structural part and role in the functioning of the whole
I have studied the Swedenborg Reports since 1981 and have made available several of my articles and books online, showing that they fundamentally meet the rational and scientific standards specified above. To review this evidence you can consult these sources, where you will also find collateral literature (some online), by various authors who have also studied the Writings of Swedenborg.
The fact is that there is no precedent in the history of psychology for a theory as global and all encompassing as the presentation in the Swedenborg Reports. The theories and accounts in psychology are generally addressed to a small zone of human behavior or thinking. There is no theory or presentation tying together the most common issues of relevance to everyday life and society into one integrated account. For the first time in science history, the Swedenborg Reports present such a unified presentation of everyday life issues – birth, development, social life, death, resuscitation, life in eternity. If we apply the above assessment grid to a number of well known and accepted theories in psychology, none of them would pass the test.
The fact is that theories in psychology change rapidly. One of my graduate school professor at McGill University in 1960, the famed physiological psychologist Donald Hebb, insisted that a “good” theory in psychology lasts about ten years. It takes a few years to test a theory and develop new data that the theory cannot handle. The theory must be changed. And so on. This is what has been called the regular “revolution” in “normal science” (Kuhn comes to mind). If a theory in psychology lasts a long time, like that of Freud, it is not a good theory, according to this view, because it means it is not specific enough to be disproven by new data.
Hebb’s perspective may be accurate for non-theistic psychology. But it does not apply to the the theistic psychology extracted from the Swedenborg Reports. Here we have a theoretical account that is totally rational and so successful that it does both things that other theories have never done before:
(1) It is empirically specific, so that it can be tested with data and observations
(2) It is totally organic, holistic, or synergistic so that it is able to account for new data
Given all this, it makes sense for you to lay aside the negative-bias materialism in the study of these reports, and to examine them with a positive-bias. This means that you are accepting the possibility that the Swedenborg Reports might be scientific and valid. You are not saying that they are scientific and valid, but only that you acknowledge that they might be, if you lay aside the usual negative-bias materialism.
Duality encompasses two worlds, one physical in time, and the other mental in eternity. This is also called the spiritual world or the afterlife. Born into eternity through a dual body, one in each world, we ‘pass on’ at death and resuscitate a few hours later in the spiritual body and our own familiar mind and identity of self. To say that we “pass on” is to speak according to the appearance, especially to those still “on earth.” The scientific specifics revealed in the Swedenborg Reports indicate that our mind and self are in the spiritual body only, and therefore we are born into eternity and stay there. We are merely not conscious that our spiritual body is functioning in the mental world of eternity. Our thoughts and feelings are in that immortal spiritual body in eternity. So instead of actually “passing on” from “this side to that side”, we are merely becoming conscious that we are already in the mental world of eternity from birth.
This new spiritual consciousness is made possible by the dying and resuscitation process. It is something we look forward to with anticipation, though we also know from Sacred Scripture that we are responsible for preparing ourselves before that process of consciousness transition. If we awaken unprepared, we follow our inherited ruling love of doing everything for the sake of self only. This love exists in the Grand Monster, in the hells of the human mind. But if we awaken from resuscitation being prepared, we have undergone character reformation and regeneration through resisting temptations. Then we have a heavenly ruling love that pulls us irresistibly to conjugial life in the Grand Human.
The two worlds are tied together in an integral coordination. Every event in the physical world of time and nature is called an effect, and every event in the mental world of eternity and the Spiritual Sun, is called a cause. The effect once it comes about, cannot exist by itself but must have the cause within itself. This is the Divine Law of Correspondence between the natural and the spiritual, between physical and mental. In the discourse of many people, including scientists, the word “natural” is normally opposed to “spiritual,” and the word “physical” is normally opposed to “mental.” Few people have suspected or known that these two sets refer to each other. “Natural” refers to “physical,” and “mental” refers to “spiritual.” Consequently, natural and physical refer to phenomena in time, and these are effects, while spiritual and mental refer to phenomena in eternity (not in time), and these are causes.
These two, the physical and the mental, or in other words, the natural and the spiritual, are correspondences and are fully determined by the laws of correspondences. These are revealed in the Swedenborg Reports. Correspondences apply only across discrete degrees. The physical and the mental are in discrete degrees. This means that nothing from the physical can come into contact with the mental – they are separate universes. But they are tied to each other, point by point, phenomenon by phenomenon, object by object. A mental object is in the world of causes, thus the spiritual world. That particular mental object has an effect in the physical, and the two are functionally tied and determined by each other.
For instance, the existence of the substance of water in the physical world is an effect whose cause is the existence of the substance of truth in the mental world. The mental world of eternity is a rational ether or expanse or field created by the Spiritual Sun. This phenomenon was visually observed by Swedenborg over the course of 27 years of daily dual consciousness, from age 57 to 84 when he was separated from his physical body in 1772. In his spiritual consciousness he was able to see the sensorimotor neos appearing in the various layers of the mental world of eternity, which is shaped overall into the appearance of the Grand Human. Every person he talked to in that spiritual consciousness (layer 4, Third Heaven) was able to see the Spiritual Sun.
The Swedenborg Report describe the Spiritual Sun as an aura that localizes the point of interchange between God and creation. God As He is in Himself, infinite, unknowable, unapproachable created mental and physical existence by means of this Divine Aura or Substance that flows out of Him and into His creation. The Spiritual Sun is therefore called Layer 1 of the mental world of eternity. From the Spiritual Sun issue an endless variety of mental substances out of which human minds are organically constructed. There are two types of spiritual substances, each infinite in their own. One type is spiritual light coming from the Spiritual Sun, and the other type is spiritual heat that is within the light. What is amazing is that the mental substance of spiritual light is nothing else than truth upon which is based rationality and the functioning purposeful order of reality. Further, the mental substance of spiritual heat is nothing else than love from which is constructed our will to live and survive.
When we are conceived and born God forms a spiritual body that contains the three systems of mental organs we call affective, cognitive, and sensorimotor. These organs are constructed out of the substances of spiritual heat and light. Since spiritual heat (Divine Love) and spiritual light (Divine Truth) are Divine substances they are living and immortal. Anything constructed out of the substances of the Spiritual Sun is therefore indestructible and permanent. Our spiritual body and its mental organs are born into eternity and remain immortal and eternal. Our self and identity as a unique person remains forever and is indestructible. That’s nice to know, right? I thought so myself when I first found out, in 1981, having found the Swedenborg Reports in our university library on the campus of the University of Hawaii. My wife and I were searching for Bible Commentaries and came across a shelf of 40 books written by one man, E. Swedenborg. We each took a volume home and have kept reading, studying, and researching those volumes since then.
The order of reality has therefore been created with the Spiritual Sun creating the mental world of eternity, and then, outside of that by a discrete degree, creating the physical world in time. This is the sequential order of phenomenal existence in creation –
Spiritual Sun à mental world of eternity à physical world in time
Source à cause à effect
Quoting from the Swedenborg Reports:
SS 28. It will be comprehended by the learned that these three may be called end, cause and effect; also being, becoming and existing: the end is being, the cause is becoming and the effect is existing. Consequently, in everything that is complete there is a trine, called the first, the middle and the last; also, the end, the cause and the effect; and also being (esse) becoming, (fieri), and existing (existere). When one understands these things then also does one understand that every Divine work is complete and perfect in its last; and also that the whole is in the last, which is a trine, because the prior things are simultaneously therein. (SS 28)
It is similar with what is mental in relation to the physical. The mental is prior and is the cause, while the physical is posterior and is the effect. The cause cannot mix with the effect but they correspond to each other and act together, and live together. When the Source is within the cause and the two together are in the effect, the sequence is completed in simultaneous order. This is the order of reality. Here are some diagrams that depict and discuss simultaneous order of a variety of things in discrete degrees:
diagram 1 || diagram 2 || diagram 3 || diagram 4 || diagram 5 || diagram 6 || diagram 7 ||
God chose our planet earth to effect the Divine Incarnation. The reason is that of all the myriad of inhabited planets across the billions of galaxies, this earth is the only one that has supported a scientific civilization based on rational methods of thinking. In order for God to complete the creation of the human race, He had to acquire for Himself a Natural Body in the physical world. He had prepared this momentous event since the beginning of the generations of people on this earth. God’s Natural Body contained a Spiritual Body in which was a natural mind with its three layers (corporeal (9), scientific (8), external rational (7e). It also contained a spiritual mind with its three layers (First Heaven (6), Second Heaven (5), and third Heaven (4).
Just as it is with all people born on this planet, God’s Natural Mind was connected by inheritance to the societies of the Grand Monster. In order to disconnect this inherited natural mind from the hell societies, God-Man had to regenerate His inherited natural mind before He could make it Divine, and hence, truly His Own. To accomplish this God-Man had to do what no human being could, before Him. This was the very purpose for which He wanted to be Incarnated and acquire for Himself a Divine Natural Body that He could take to Himself in eternity, so that those in the afterlife of eternity could see Him visually, and touch Him with their hands. This visible touchable God is called The Divine Human. There is only One God. Until the Incarnation God could only be seen as the Spiritual Sun. This is because He had not acquired for Himself a Sensorimotor Body, which is the ultimate of human life. Swedenborg was told by those who live in layer 4 consciousness (Third Heaven) that the Divine Human sometimes appears to them face to face and talks with them.
The method that God-Man created to regenerate His Natural Mind is the method that every human being after that, must use to regenerate his or her natural mind. This method involves three steps:
(I) God-Man creates a new evolutionary layer in His natural mind. This is layer 7i or the interior-natural layer. This organ never existed in the current split-brain spiritual race, though it did exist in the earlier whole-brain celestial race that first lived on this earth (“the Most Ancient Church”). The interior-natural layer (7i) that God-Man constructed in the human natural mind actually completes the full evolution of the human race. With this new interior organic system in our rational mind (layer 7i) we are able to raise our consciousness to the spiritual and celestial level, almost as if our spiritual mind became conscious. Through this entirely new ability our rational mind has been able to evolve progressively for two thousand years and to produce modern science, society, and a global civilization.
This evolution could not have occurred on any other planet in the universe, and it is on this account that God was Incarnated on this earth. Hence it is that viewed spiritually, this earth is the center of the universe. All other human generations have been benefitted by the organic evolution that took place on this earth. The entire human race is kept by God as one organic unit called the Grand Human, and its opposite, the Grand Monster. These organic entities operate as one so that whatever changes occur in one place, affect all the other places, each in its own unique way.
You can see from this that neo production is the basis upon which human evolution depends. Layer 7i neos are the higher correspondences of Sacred Scripture that we can extract and organize into a science called theistic psychology.
Our soul at conception and birth (layers 2, 3) is imprinted with a spiritual bar code that contains the unique traits and abilities of the person's mental layers (4 to 9). This spiritual gene contains the entire future states of the person. Every mental layer contains its own portion of the spiritual barcode, which gives the person a unique spiritual identity in all states of consciousness.
Spiritual barcodes are organic. They are made of a mixture of lighter and darker stripes or bars. Each stripe is a spiritual address located in one of the numberless societies of the Grand Human (layers 4, 5, 6) and the Grand Monster (layers -7, -8, -9). As each layer grows and develops in the course of our daily life, the operations taking place in each layer are determined by the barcode addresses organically stamped on that layer. Each spiritual address is actually an open connection or channel of communication between the loves of the people in the society at that address, and the loves that the individual is attached to.
For example, suppose you feel depressed because your supervisor criticized your for the way you are doing your work. Feeling depressed is a hellish love sourced in the Grand Monster. There is an address in your spiritual barcode in layer 9A that connects your feeling of being depressed with a society in the Grand Monster populated with people whose chief passion is to enjoy people's depressive thoughts and emotions about themselves. It's a kind of sadistic enjoyment, as when you and your friends enjoy teasing someone. This kind of bullying happens frequently in school, at work, with friends. Some people feel enjoyment when they see someone's misfortunes. These people also feel depression when others gain something or have something that you want, but can't have. There is a large collection of loves and sub-loves around feeling depressed. As long you the spiritual address with that society remains open for communication, you are going to experience these loves at various times (depression when losing, elation when winning, etc.).
Your emotion of depression when your boss criticizes you, or when a friend rejects you, or when you don't win the contest, etc., is produced by this connection that you keep open in your "vertical community" or mental world. Although we are all born with an inherited spiritual bar code that determines our heavenly and hellish loves, we are not part of the spiritual society where our loves originate from. We do not own these loves, nor are they within us. They are merely open channels that transmit this love to our affective organ in layers 7, 8, 9. They become our own only when we develop a love for that inflowing affective operation. For instance, one way we can react to our depression is to satisfy our love for retaliation. We enjoy thinking bad thoughts about the person who offended or rejected us. This enjoyment of retaliating, punishing, denigrating is a hellish enjoyment coming from a hellish love (layer -9, -8). Each time we experience the enjoyment of vengeance, the satisfaction of seeing someone suffer, even if it goes no further than in our imagination, we are making that love our own. And once a love is made our own, we can get rid of it only through regeneration, only by spiritual combat against temptations brought to us by the Divine Psychologist.
The process of regeneration by temptation is an organic process managed entirely by the Divine Psychologist within every person who is still active in the natural mind prior to dying and resuscitation. The cumulative activity of regeneration over days, months, years, and decades, consists of disowning our hellish loves, and owning our heavenly loves. We inherit both loves through the spiritual barcode connection in our vertical community. The lighter and darker stripes insure that we oscillate all day between heavenly and hellish emotions and thoughts. This regular and frequent alternation process of our consciousness is necessary for the ability to undergo regeneration. We inherit connections to the Grand Human (lighter stripes) and the Grand Monster (darker stripes) but the loves that come through the connections do not become our own loves until we decide to practice them and allow ourselves to enjoy them without opposition.
We can practice inherited heavenly impulses like curiosity, studying, cooperation, sincerity, conscience, etc., and they become our own loves, our abilities, our own good. But if we don't practice sincerity by preferring to lie and get away with deception, then we make the love of fraud and thievery to be our own love. The Divine Psychologist faces us with temptations in daily life in order to allow us to choose to love the hellish trait and enjoyment, or to refuse to love it, and to try to reject it, and even hate it. By refusing to practice an evil enjoyment, we are making it possible for the Divine Psychologist to remove that inherited connection in the spiritual barcode.
The more we regenerate a mental layer, the more the lighter and darker stripes are separated into two camps. Eventually all the heavenly stripes will be in one camp, and all the hellish ones in an opposing camp.
Today the neuroscience of consciousness has human awareness located in the physical brain. This may be called reductionist neuroscience because it reduces two dimensions into one. It views physical brain and mental consciousness as one material substance in time and place. Non-reductionist neuroscience allows for a dualism of substances. Physical substance is in time and place, and composes the brain of the physical body. Mental substance is not in time and place, and composes the brain of the spiritual body. There are therefore two bodies to consider at our birth, one made of temporary physical substances, the other made of eternal mental substances. The physical substances originate in the sun or star systems, while the spiritual substances originate in the Spiritual Sun, which is the center of the mental world of eternity. The two bodies grow up together in correspondence, and when the physical body dies, our conscious life continues as before through the spiritual body.
In other words our feelings, thoughts, and sensations are not events located in the physical brain and body. They are events located in the mental organs called affective, cognitive, and sensorimotor. These mental organs are located in the spiritual body since birth, and remain there forever. Since the spiritual body is immortal, the mental organs are permanent in eternity. Our conscious self does not stop at the death of the physical body since the self is located in the spiritual body right from the start of conscious life.
Our mental organs are arranged in layers of operations from lowest (layer 9) to highest (layer 4). Our consciousness is determined by the level at which it is operating in any situation. The feelings, loves, mentality, thinking, preferences, limitations at each consciousness level have been described in the Swedenborg Reports and are presented in theistic psychology.
The above makes it clear that human consciousness has an organic basis. Note also that we consciousness is a composite contributed by three mental systems or functions of operation – affective (A), cognitive (C), and sensorimotor (S). Affective consciousness is determined by the quality of our loves in relation to God and the Spiritual Sun. This is because the Spiritual Sun, which is the origin of all human mental substances in eternity, is nothing but an exit point or outflow of the spiritual substances of Divine Love and Divine Truth, flowing into the created mental world of humanity. The Spiritual Sun is at the center, also at the highest region (layer 1) of the created mental world. There is only one mental world, and you and me and everyone is in that one same mental world. We cannot see one another now, while we are still attached to the physical body by correspondence. But immediately after our resuscitation, at the end of the dying process, we are awakened in consciousness in our higher or spiritual mind, and in that consciousness we can see everyone who has passed into the afterlife.
Swedenborg was an extraordinary Divinely initiated exception so that he was given conscious awareness in the spiritual mind while he was still here conscious in his natural mind and physical body. He led a strange dual consciousness life for 27 years, from age 57 to 84. He left behind the Swedenborg Reports which are about 30 volumes of his empirical and experimental observations during these years of the mental world of eternity and ho wit corresponds and relates to the conscious life we know here prior to passing on through dying and resuscitation.
Prior to our resuscitation our consciousness is limited the three layers of the natural mind (9, 8, 7). After resuscitation our consciousness operates in the layers of the spiritual mind (6, 5, 4). The task we have in our years on earth is to regenerate the natural mind, which allows the spiritual mind to open, grow, and mature. If the natural mind is not regenerated, the spiritual layers do not function after resuscitation. This means that we must then continue to operate in our natural mind, but now in the mental world of eternity. This is a disastrous situation and leads to an unhappy life in eternity called “hell.” But if we regenerate the natural layers, the spiritual layers are ready to function after resuscitation, and our consciousness can dwell in an eternal “heaven” with our soul mate.
Regeneration is an organic process. It is made necessary because our natural mind is born with inherited hellish loves. More precisely, we are each born with a unique spiritual bar code that automatically ties us to certain “hellish” societies, each of whom specialize in some selfish, cruel, insane, and destructive love or enjoyment. Regeneration is the organic process that separates us from that inherited connection. The process is carried out in cooperation with the Divine Psychologist who brings events and situations to the life of each person in such a way as to bring awareness to the individual of the inherited ties to the hellish societies. We can observe, witness, monitor our thoughts and feelings in the course of the day and evaluate them in terms of what we know about heavenly and hellish traits. The process is experienced as a "temptation" during which we are pulled by opposing emotional forces: to give in or to reject the hellish love, enjoyment, or habit. When we reject a hellish connection with the Grand Monster, we are gradually cut off from those societies so that we no longer "own" those hellish traits.
As regeneration proceeds day by day, and year by year, our spiritual mind (layers 6, 5, 4) is opened, operationalized, prepared for our conscious life in it after resuscitation. If we are unwilling to go through the lifelong process of regeneration, or conscious disowning of inherited hellish traits, then our spiritual mind is not opened or functional after resuscitation. We then experience consciousness in the natural mind (layers -9, -8, -7). The minus sign indicates that these natural layers after resuscitation are not suitable for genuine human life in the mental world of eternity. People in that consciousness are sub-human caricatures of their former selves when they still had heavenly traits along with the hellish. But after resuscitation, when the spiritual layers are non-functional, the heavenly traits are rejected or lost, leaving behind a monstrous version -- people who invert all truth and good into falsity and evil, creating a community of hell around them in which they have to spend their consciousness in mental eternity.
The construction of novel sentences, novel expressions, novel words, novel nonsense words, nicknames, names of endearment, titles, lyrics, names of people, streets, places, products, lifestyle practices, etc. -- these are normal speech acts all speakers of a language employ constantly. Children at play produce novel verbalizations that may be called nonsense neologisms or meaningless neologisms. I have neologued many romantic neologisms of endearment to describe the diversity of conjugial delights her appearance and presence initiates in me. According to my favorite author, no two things can ever be the same because all created things, qualities, or events must reflect God's infinity (Swedenborg). In other words, if things were not absolutely unique the created universe would not accurately reflect the creativeness of God, in whom "infinite things make one" (Swedenborg). In other words, all creations by God and all constructions by people are existential neologisms.
Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) was a voluminous writers. The current
publication of his entire works translated in English take up nearly 50 volumes.
About 37 of these were written after his dual consciousness was awakened at age
57. I have been studying these volumes since 1981 and have based my work on it
since then, especially my 18-volume project called "theistic
psychology." I coined the neologism "the Swedenborg Reports" to refer to
this collection of scientific reports on his observations during his dual
consciousness. He was quite surprised when he found himself one day being
conscious of two worlds simultaneously. One was the conscious awareness of the
natural world through his natural mind and physical body, the other was the
conscious awareness of the spiritual world through his spiritual mind and
spiritual body. Every human being is
born into eternity, with a temporary physical body attached to the natural mind, and a permanent or eternal spiritual body attached to our spiritual mind. The Swedenborg Reports are the first scientific reports on the afterlife world. No scientist before him had direct observational access to the dying process and the resuscitation process that takes place a few hours after the death of the physical body.
In 27 years of full conscious awareness of the spiritual world, Swedenborg observed thousands of people being resuscitated and was able to talk to them, both strangers and people he knew in this life. He also interviewed people who had lived on this earth thousands of years ago, yet appeared in the "flower of youth" in their heavenly habitations in eternity. Some of my favorite neologisms coined by Swedenborg are these:
the Divine Human
interior sense of Sacred Scripture
natural, spiritual, celestial senses
science of correspondences
spiritual heat or love
spiritual light or truth
One Person in Three Divine Aspects
Grand Man (or Grand Human)
Most Ancient Church
In my attempt to render the Swedenborg Reports into contemporary psychological ideas and methods I had to coin a variety of neologisms such as these:
the mental world of eternity
the Divine Psychologist
genes of consciousness
doctrine of the wife
unity model of marriage
The act of constructing neologisms has a spiritual dimension or significance when examined from the perspective of the Swedenborg Reports. Note the etymology of neologism: neo=new and logos=word or meaning. Thus, neologism=new word or meaning. The Swedenborg Reports present the view that a new spiritual age was ushered in by God through Swedenborg's Writings in which God reveals through him the science of correspondences that describes the laws by which God manages the universe in its various layers or discrete degrees. These laws are contained in the "spiritual sense" of Sacred Scripture.
All Sacred Scripture is Divine Speech or Truth that has descended from God and was transformed from a celestial meaning, to a spiritual meaning, to a natural meaning. The natural meaning of Sacred Scripture is the literal meaning. By applying the knowledge of correspondences to the verses and words of the literal sense of Sacred Scripture, one can extract the spiritual and celestial senses that are hidden within it. This extraction process is possible only when the individual is enlightened by God to see these more interior truths within the literal sense. Everyone is enlightened by God who is willing to stop acting and thinking from selfish traits, and wants to become a "new person" who is altruistic and happy with heavenly enjoyments.
This new human ability accessible to every human being now and in the endless future is called the New Word or the New Church. Thus "neologism" has a spiritual meaning that refers to this New Word, this new consciousness that God is bringing about, a new step in the evolution of human consciousness. When we coin a new term in science we are enacting the new human consciousness which is a more interior thinking, more spiritual and rational, closer to truth, to Divine Truth or Rationality.
The process of constructing neologisms must be connected to the process of sharing them.
The adoption of neologisms by others and from others is a spiritual sharing called "spiritual love" by Swedenborg. Every person is a neologist and constructs neologisms every day in ordinary speaking, writing, and reflecting. The process of thinking produces neologisms as a by product. To speak is to create. The inventiveness of our thinking and speaking is produced by our love -- what it is that we want and desire to express outwardly. The nature of love is to strive to externalize. To achieve this external existence, love transmutes by correspondence into thinking and reflecting, then at last into doing and sensing.
Speaking more anatomically, every human being is a threefold self -- affective self, cognitive self, sensorimotor self. Each self resides and operates within its own specialized organ -- affective organ, cognitive organ, sensorimotor organ. These mental organs are fused into operational synergy by the Divine laws of correspondences that activate and coordinate the layers in every human mind. The affective organ is a receptor for spiritual heat, while the cognitive organ is a receptor of spiritual light. In other words, our feeling and willing are subjective experiences resulting from the operations of the affective organ stimulated by spiritual heat. And similarly, our thinking and reflecting are subjective experiences resulting from the operations of the cognitive organ stimulated by spiritual light.
This operational synergy between the affective and the cognitive, between the inner willing and its understanding, transforms itself by correspondence into an outward existence in the sensorimotor organ, whose operations we experience as sensing, moving, verbalizing, and doing. The threefold self is therefore an anatomical construction activated by God through the inflow of spiritual heat and light. What is truly amazing is that spiritual heat and light are live substances, not at all like physical heat and light that come from the natural sun. In fact, the Swedenborg Reports fully establish the existence of the Spiritual Sun in the mental world of eternity. From age 57 to his passing on at 84, Emanuel Swedenborg was a dual citizen, living a dual life, one through the physical body in the natural world of time and place, and the other through the spiritual body in the mental world of eternity, which he called "the spiritual world." He daily wrote copious notes of his observations, which have been published and translated and known as the Writings of Swedenborg. They amount to about 30 volumes.
Swedenborg confirmed that the Spiritual Sun is visible to all who raise their threefold self consciousness to the highest layer of their mind called the celestial-rational layer or "Third Heaven." He encountered and interviewed numerous inhabitants of this mental layer of humanity. These people told him that they had been born on earth in "Most Ancient" times and had been living in their Third Heaven since their death. Swedenborg marveled at their appearance and how they looked in their "early youth," which I take to mean around the age of 20. And what was even more amazing and delightful to discover, was that they were living as married couples in what Swedenborg called "conjugial love."
These Most ancient people were special and different from the race that evolved subsequently on this earth. We are part of the split-brain race whose genius and mentality is called spiritual, while the Most Ancients were a celestial race and their brain was not split into a left and right hemispheres. They were unable to simulate, lie, or act outwardly contrary to what they felt inwardly. Whereas our spiritual race can separate and break up the perfect synergy between willing and thinking and speaking. Our threefold self has evolved to be able to act somewhat independently of each other. As a result we are able to alternate between mental states called heavenly, and others called hellish. For instance when people drive in traffic it is common to alternate between relatively calm or good states and negative or agitated states. Sometimes it is called the Jekyll-Hyde syndrome. This kind of alternation is impossible for the celestial race, but for us, not only is it normal but the ability that makes it possible for us to regenerate the threefold self from its inherited negativity.
God works with every individual, continuously being active in the operations and synergy of the threefold self. From birth to endless eternity we are co-managers with the Divine Psychologist in the domain of our mind. God's management procedures are carried out through two types of forces acting on us. One is called "immediate influx" and the other is called "mediate influx." This refers to the way spiritual heat and light from the Spiritual Sun enters or inflows our threefold organs in the spiritual body. God's Divine Love inflows as spiritual heat substance, while God's Divine Truth inflows as spiritual light substance. The "flow" of spiritual substances first enters the layer of the mind that is closest to the Spiritual Sun. This is called the Third Heaven of mental eternity. Every human being is born into time and born into eternity. One is through a temporary physical body in the natural world, the other is through a permanent spiritual body in the mental world of eternity (or the "spiritual world").
Upon the death of the physical body, we lose contact with the physical world. A few hours later we awaken in our spiritual body. Remember that all along, since birth, our threefold self resides in the spiritual body in the mental world of eternity. When we lose connection to the physical world, we merely continue as before in the spiritual body. There is actual "passing on" or going anywhere. Our self and consciousness, our thoughts feelings and sensations, are already in the mental world of eternity. These have never been, and never could, exist in the physical world, as for instance in the brain of the physical body. Feelings, thoughts, and sensations are immaterial, hence cannot exist in something material.
Swedenborg observed then interviewed thousands of people who have just been resuscitated in the conscious awareness of the spiritual body. He describes the 30-hour process in some detail. He himself had been conscious in his spiritual body from age 57 onward, while normally one regains spiritual consciousness only after resuscitation, when natural consciousness ends. As a result of his dual existence for 27 years, Swedenborg was able to write the Swedenborg Reports which gives science for the first time in history, an empirical glimpse into the world of the afterlife.
One of the most far reaching discoveries Swedenborg's has made is that the threefold self has the spontaneous or automatic ability to project or create a sensorimotor environment that reflects, represents, and corresponds to the affective and cognitive organs acting in synergy. We have a foretaste of the mental world of the afterlife in eternity right now, when we are engaged in dreaming during sleep. We can gain a rational understanding of our afterlife if we reflect on what we are doing when we are dreaming.
It is the threefold self that is doing the dreaming during sleep. When we remember the dream upon awaking, especially when it is vivid, we can still picture or visualize parts of it. Our dreams are sensorimotor expressions and creations of the cognitive and affective organs acting together. We can actually experience sensations in all our modalities -- we can see things, taste and smell them, we can grab things, we can be held down by force or locked up in a room, and we can talk, eat, make love, even fly and transport ourselves instantly anywhere at any distance. This is the power of the sensorimotor organ in giving us subjective experiences. And all the operations of the sensorimotor organ are reactions by correspondence, to the operations in our affective and cognitive organs.
This is what Swedenborg discovered when he became conscious in the spiritual mind, the spiritual layers of our mental anatomy, into which all human beings arrive after resuscitation. The environment of the afterlife is somewhat similar and congruent with the environment here on earth. When people are resuscitated they see their spiritual body as similar to their former physical body -- it looks like it, feels like it, operates like it. We also know this from our dreams where the mental body (or dream body) of others, and our own body, appear just like the physical body we are all familiar with. Of course they are not similar in construction, the physical body being made of physical matter from the physical planet and sun, while the spiritual body and its threefold system of mental organs, is constructed out of the spiritual substances of the Spiritual Sun. The spiritual body cannot die, cannot starve to death, or get sick from germs and poisons, cannot be held by force in a room, cannot be disciplined against its own will. The spiritual body and its mind is forever free.
Swedenborg observed the interaction patterns between people in their life of eternity. Everything you see around someone, and everything that happens there, is a construction of our "ruling love." This refers to the affective hierarchy that is embedded anatomically in our affective organ. We develop and grow this hierarchy of feelings and intentions by the life choices we make every day, and every hour or minute of the day. All choices that are freely made, that is not coerced by circumstances or people, are called free will choices of love. It is love that dictates and determines the choices we think about and execute. Since we alternate all day between heavenly and hellish loves, we slowly and gradually construct our love hierarchy, both in the heavenly category of operations, and in the hellish. By the time we "pass on" in our consciousness from this world to the next, which occurs at resuscitation, we "arrive" in the other life fully equipped and loaded with our loves in both categories.
Swedenborg discovered that after resuscitation people go through a psychologically and emotionally intense series of mental states during which they are progressively exploring their love hierarchies through experiences and events arranged and provided by the Divine Psychologist. This intense Divine psychotherapy has but one purpose: to bring people in touch with their ruling love and its hierarchy of sub-loves. At last all pretenses of the personality fly out the window, leaving in place the ruling love and its total and absolute control over the threefold self.
Now this ruling love takes over the person's existence. It dictates what the person intends, desires, thinks, and does. Every love that is incompatible or contrary to the ruling love, gets banished forever to the outmost regions of the mind, and they just lie there, inert, no longer operative, as if no longer alive. By the laws of existence in the mental world of eternity, the sensorimotor environment or appearances begin to reflect the new person, now stripped of anything ambivalent. The threefold self is now rendered completely consistent, completely unified.
If the person's ruling love is a heavenly love, a love that is compatible with heavenly order in the heavenly layers of the mental world of eternity, then the person begins a new life of eternity in the heavenly zones of the mental world of humanity. Bit of the ruling love is a hellish one, a love that is incompatible with heavenly order, the the person begins a new life in the hellish zones of the mental world. Thus it is that some people live in heaven, and others in hell.
Swedenborg explored the mental spaces of Heaven and Hell. He describes how people live in habitations, cities, gardens, mountains, and how these sensorimotor appearances are beautiful, benign, spacious, and diverse in the case of the heavenly layers, and how they are ugly, noxious, cavernous, dark, and filled with unspeakable horrors that the inhabitants there impose on each other, playing out their infernal loves, hatreds, and insanities. When those who are in hell are taken up in consciousness to the sensorimotor environment of the heavens in their mind, they experience even more severe tortures of the mind than the worst they have in hell. They feel torn apart from the inside seams of their being, and they spontaneously precipitate themselves back into their hellish loves, environment, and companions. There they feel revived due to having their infernal loves back. For without one's loves, one is not alive.
Even more amazing discoveries are described in the Swedenborg Reports. He was allowed to receive a bird's eye view of the mental world of eternity. And from that perspective he confirmed the shape of the mental world of humanity: the heavenly layers are in the shape of a Grand Human in angelic appearance, and below that, the hellish layers of the mind are in the shape of a Grand Monster. Swedenborg's spiritual geography is therefore identical to mental anatomy. The shape of our threefold self is a human form, and every organ is in the human form as well. Swedenborg visited the various spiritual societies that form the Grand Human and the Grand Monster, and he would refer to his location by reference to the body parts. He would say that he is "in the province of the liver" or in the region of the uterus, or heart, or lungs, or pancreas. The Grand Human and Monster possess the organs of both sexes. People live in one region or another as determined by their ruling love. Those who have compatible ruling loves are close to one another, which means that they communicate with one another more than with distant societies whose ruling love is at variance.
And even more amazing: the character or mentality of the people, as determined by their ruling love, corresponds to the functions and properties of the organs they live in.
And further, Swedenborg discovered that the societies in the Grand Human and Monster are completely integrated and function synergistically. There is a common "respiration" that affects every society mutually. There is a constant "communication" of all operations in the threefold self of every person in a society with all others in that society. And after that, there is a similar reverberation of influence that spreads across the entire mind of humanity. Every single love, thought, and sensation experienced by one human being reverberates and is communicated to the entire network of human beings. As Swedenborg puts it, in the eyes of God all human beings are integrated and seen as one human being.
Now we can get back to the role of neologisms in all this.
All life is of love and all love reflects the infinity of God's love. Love is behind all neologisms. Think of a sentence you wrote or said recently to someone. Where did that sentence originate from? It came from some love, something you wanted to say to someone, something you desired to express in words, some perception or insight you've had by looking at something, or thinking about it. Love comes out on the wings of some thought or idea, and shows itself in the medium of sensorimotor appearances. Heaven is a sensorimotor appearance created by heavenly loves acting through heavenly thoughts. Heavenly loves enter our affective organ through spiritual heat, and transforms itself as the accompanying thoughts, which then produce the environmental appearances, objects, sensations, and actions.
Neologisms are therefore affective loves in cognitive form that create the word, phrase, or sentence.
If you want to know the quality of a person's love, look at the neologisms they produce. The meaning of each neologism is a spiritual map of where the love is that produced it, or, that is within that meaning. Every meaning contains a love. The meaning and the love become one, like husband and wife become one in the conjugial couples of our heavenly society. The marriage between our love and its meaning engenders the coming into existence of a neologism. The parents of the neologism are the love and its meaning. An operation in our affective organ ("love") forms a union with a corresponding operation in our cognitive organ ("meaning"), and the two together create a corresponding operation in our sensorimotor organ, which is the neologism when it activates the speech mechanisms, or the typing-texting of the fingers. The source of the neologism is the love, and the love is an inflow of the spiritual heat into the affective organ.
Such is the nature of infinite Divine love. Its infinite intensity comes out into the created universe through the Spiritual Sun, which Swedenborg described as an aura surrounding the Divine Human. This Spiritual Sun is the origin of all loves in the mental world of eternity. God's infinite love is infinitely diverse and abundant, which is why everything that comes into existence must be unique. No two things that exist can be identical since every thing is created from some love, and all loves from the Divine Human are infinite and unique. This means that there are also infinite truths in God since every love must be married to its own truth. All meanings are forms of truth, and also, forms of truth that are distorted or falsified by the loves of each individual. Spiritual light is truth substance itself, and spiritual heat is love substance itself. Swedenborg interchanged the words love and good, and also the words truth and wisdom, from which come knowledge, intelligence, and wisdom.
In a pointed sense neos are zones of community ignorance. No one knows a neo prior to its construction by just one person. The diffusion of neos to others is the basis of community existence. People obtain their ideas and ideals from the neos of others. This is the process of cultural enrichment. Neo production of a group or society is an index of its inventiveness, adaptability, survivability. Cross-cultural sharing of neo production builds a unified globalism anchored in mutual love. It is the antidote to warfare and ethnocentric antipathy. People who benefit each other from their neo-construction procedures feel integrated in a community of humanity. All neos come down from God into the mind of its inventor. To love another’s neos is to love God in whom the neos are sourced. God is at the center of every neo.
Neologisms are new meanings, hence new truths from new loves.
When a neologism is born in the mental world of eternity, its location in the mind is either in the Grand Human or in the Grand Monster. Neologisms form a continuous reverberation within the spiritual societies that gave birth to its existence in the mind of an individual on earth, who is reflecting, speaking or writing. From there the reverberation of neologisms continue to the adjoining mental societies, and eventually every human being that ever existed or was born, experiences the results of that original reverberation of the birth of the neologism. Since every neologism is a unique spiritual child, it becomes the source of endless new meanings being added to the human understanding. This allows the generations to cumulate in intelligence and form ever more advanced, more humane, more heavenly civilizations on earth.
Each new generation thus benefits from this more advanced mentality and is able to create still more advanced and marvelous neologisms, that will further enrich the spiritual societies of eternity. This endless cycle of progress in the marriage of love and truth within each threefold self, is the organic mechanism that God provides for the endless evolution of the Grand Human, the endless expansion our loves and intelligences, with heaven and earth working together, the spiritual-celestial and the natural-corporeal acting by correspondence as one.
Be conscious of your neologisms and keep track of them. The semantic map or web, they form reveals the nature of your immortal existence in eternity.
Commercial neologisms like trademarks and product names are guaranteed by federal law the right to remain unique. Although one can use the name for other than commercial purposes, the owner can request a judge to prohibit certain ongoing uses by others of that name or title. Literary neologisms cannot be copyrighted, and once introduced or published, they are quotable and usable by anyone, including commercial dictionaries. Scientific neologisms are considered literary products and have no claims to ownership, except historical. Entertainment neologisms include titles of books, scripts, movies, and television programs. These are treated as commercial products and ownership of title and script are protected by federal copyright and patent laws.
Masculine neologisms are fundamentally different from feminine neologisms. One is the product of a man’s cognitive organ, while the other is the product of the feminine cognitive organ. Nothing in a man can be like anything in a woman, and vice versa (see here). I have not made an empirical study of this, and if anyone does, or already has, please email me if you would. It is well known that childish neologisms, that is, neologisms produced by the mind of children, revolves around the sensorimotor awareness of self. They respond with involvement and enthusiasm to little phonological games and interactions that involve verbalizing sound patterns and rhythms. They like stories where the teller imitates sounds of people, things, and animals. When they are a little older, they move on from sensorimotor neologisms to cognitive neologisms and invent clever and engaging limericks that people over the centuries have kept track of (the name Opie comes to mind). Adolescents respond with heart to patriotic neologisms that facilitate the development of a sense of belonging and identity. Young adults fall in love with affective neologisms or romantic neologisms found in the lyrics of songs. They also begin to be enmeshed in political neologisms in which they find a source of validation and self-confidence. Religious neologisms gain their deeper influence on people as they move into mature adulthood. Worshippers gain access to the doctrines and belief systems embodied in the titles of rules, principles, and creeds. In theistic psychology readers and students are introduced to the correspondential sense of Divine Neologisms, which are the words and expressions in Sacred Scripture.
As Swedenborg demonstrates, the Divine Style of Sacred Scripture is composed from Divine dictation or direct inspiration, and is such that every word and expression in it carries three meanings: the literal, the spiritual, and the celestial. Literal Divine Neologisms are expressed in a natural language and in the context of a particular cultural and historical milieu. This is why the literal sense of Sacred Scripture from different religions and time epochs appear to show independence or disagreements and contradictions. This is a necessary consequence of socialization practices in all cultures and places. We must provide intellectual content to religion so that children can be socialized into it, and so that adults can hold on to it with loyalty and belief, and pass it on to their children. This generational process of transmission of religious neologisms requires that their content be congruent with the content of the culture and belief systems that are being practiced. Hence it is that all Sacred Scripture in the literal sense reflects the content of the culture and civilization. God manages the two together, namely, the evolution of civilization and culture, and the progressive revelations in Sacred Scripture over the millennia and centuries.
But the spiritual and celestial senses of Sacred Scripture from different religions, cultures, and epochs are not only compatible but similar in intellectual content. The Swedenborg Reports demonstrate that every Literal Divine Neologism encapsulates within itself, a Spiritual Divine Neologism, and within that, a Celestial Divine Neologism. Everyone who studies the language or science of correspondences revealed in the Swedenborg Reports can perform this extraction process from the literal-historical, to the generalized spiritual, to the universal celestial. This threefold embedding of meaning and consciousness in Sacred Scripture is the physiological process that activates and maintains the threefold self of every individual – sensorimotor self, cognitive self, affective self.
The Literal Divine Neologisms of Sacred Scripture create and establish the sensorimotor self of every human being. The Spiritual Divine Neologisms of Sacred Scripture create and establish the cognitive self of every human being. The Celestial Divine Neologisms of Sacred Scripture create and establish the affective self of every human being.
The sensorimotor self is constructed out of our sensations, sensory involvements, and motor readinesses and determinations. The cognitive self is constructed out of our thoughts, reflections, images, and understandings. The affective self is constructed out of our feelings, loves, intentions, and desires. Hence it is that human consciousness and civilization is produced and managed by the Divine Neologisms in Sacred Scripture. The specific cause-effect connection varies with cultural and individual personality. The connection is more direct when people acknowledge Sacred Scripture as Divine Speech or Absolute and Divine Truth given to humanity for the growth and development of every human being. The connection is more indirect when people deny that Sacred Scripture is God’s Divine Speech or Word. The minds of people who reject the idea that God is real are nevertheless equally managed by God, without which the individual would cease to be human and intelligent. God manages the mind of atheists and others who have a system of beliefs that deny or exclude God, since without this Divine omnipotent management or control, the thoughts of the individual would not remain coherent and adaptable to survival.
The Swedenborg Reports, written in the 18th century, constitute a neologistic revelation as opposed to a “new” revelation which implies something different and foreign. But a neologistic revelation is a revelation about the old and familiar, now seen in a “new light,” which means that “new truths” are now seen in the old that were not seen by anyone before. Thus, the Swedenborg Reports (more commonly known as “the Writings of Swedenborg”), are a neologistic revelation about the Old Testament and the New Testament. These two Sacred Scriptures were studied by thousands of serious scholars and scientists for many centuries, generation after generation, and yet not one single individual saw the correspondential meaning that is hidden within these Sacred Scriptures. The Swedenborg Reports reveal the correspondential sense of the Old and New Testaments. This is not a “new” revelation, but a neologistic revelation about the old and familiar.
For instance, the New Testament has this verse:
nor will people say, 'Here it is,' or 'There it is,' because the kingdom of God is within you.(Luke 17:21)
What does it mean to say that “the kingdom of God is within you”? Generations of thinkers have been involved in this issue. Wikipedia summarizes a number of these views, which I sample here:
(…) Albert Schweitzer, Rudolf Bultmann, Norman Perrin and Johannes Weiss argued that Jesus’ “Kingdom” was intended to be a wholly futuristic kingdom. These scholars looked to the apocalyptic traditions of various Jewish groups existing at the time of Jesus as the basis of their study , , , . In this view, Jesus was an apocalyptic preacher who would bring about the end times and when he did not see the end of the cosmic order coming Jesus embraced death as a tool in which to provoke God into action.
The most common view of the “Kingdom” in recent scholarship is to embrace the truths of both these parties – present reality and future manifestation. Some scholars who take this view are N.T. Wright and G.R. Beasley-Murray. In their views, the “Kingdom” that Jesus spoke of will be fully realized in the future but it is also in a process of “in-breaking” into the present. This means that Jesus’ deeds and words have an immediate effect on the “Kingdom” even though it was not fully manifested during his life. Even greater attention has been paid to the concept of the “Kingdom of God” by scholars during the current third quest for the historical Jesus (of which N.T. Wright is associated). (…)
The present aspect of the Kingdom refers to the changed state of heart or mind (metanoia) within Christians (see Luke 17:20-21), emphasizing the spiritual nature of His Kingdom by saying, "The Kingdom of Heaven is within (or among) you." The reported activity of Jesus in healing diseases, driving out demons, teaching a new ethic for living, and offering a new hope in God to the poor, is understood to be a demonstration of that Kingdom in action.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church accepts the doctrine of the Kingdom of God dividing it into two phases. These are, the Kingdom of Grace which was established immediately after Adam and Eve sinned, and the Kingdom of Glory which will be fully established when Christ returns to earth for the second time.
(The above is from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingdom_of_Heaven )
The knowledge of correspondences revealed in the Swedenborg Reports gives scientists a new technology of knowledge extraction or a new spiritual discourse analysis, that provides us with a scientific methodology able to translate Divine Literal Neologisms into Divine Spiritual Neologisms and into Divine Celestial Neologisms. This is literally a Jacob’s Ladder by which we can carry our scientific methodology across the array of discrete layers in eternity (or “discrete degrees”), with each layer or degree getting closer to God’s Divine Speech. The Writings of Swedenborg are called “the New Word” but not in the sense of a “new” revelation, but in the sense of a neologistic revelation of the Old and New Testament Sacred Scriptures, which are then called “the Old Word.” To say it again, the New Word does not replace the Old Word, but strengthens it, reveals its inner sense, which is infinite, because Divine Speech is in it.
The Divine Literal Neologism written in one English version as “the Kingdom of God is within you” is the external literal-historical sense that contains within it an internal Divine Spiritual Neologism. What is this? You can see from the Wikipedia summary that no one has known this. In the Swedenborg Reports we finally have the answer through revelation of the knowledge of correspondences, which are cause-effect connections between Divine Literal Neologisms and Divine Spiritual Neologisms. The “Kingdom of God” in the literal sense corresponds to the mental world of eternity in the spiritual sense. This is the world which contains the mental layers called “heaven” and “hell.” At the moment of our death here on earth, the resuscitation process begins. Swedenborg observed this process numerous times for 27 years. It takes about 30 hours to complete, and then we awaken as if from sleep, and begin our life of immortality in the mental world of eternity, supplied with a spiritual body (which we have from birth), and a mental environment that responds or reacts to our thoughts and feelings, as dreams respond and react to our wishes, desires, or fears.
The Divine Literal Neologism “within you” corresponds in its spiritual sense to the individual’s mind, which is born in the mental world of eternity and exists there forever. Hence, the entire Divine Literal Neologism “the Kingdom of God is within you” corresponds to the heavenly mental states we have after resuscitation – “if, and only if, we love and enjoy these heavenly mental states.” This is the Divine Celestial Neologism.
the kingdom of God is within you
the heavenly mental states we have after resuscitation
if, and only if, we love and enjoy these heavenly mental states
The spiritual body is born with a spiritual mind and a natural mind, each arranged in three discrete degrees. We are conscious in the natural mind while we are still connected to our physical body on earth, but we are not conscious of our spiritual mind until after resuscitation. The spiritual mind serves as our consciousness after death and resuscitation. It has the power to create a heaven. The spiritual mind must therefore be carefully prepared so that it is fully operative for us after resuscitation. If we neglect to operationalize the spiritual mind prior to our death and resuscitation, it will not function. Our consciousness cannot move on from the natural mind we use here, to the spiritual mind we use in the mental world of eternity. The natural mind is well suited to give us a level of consciousness and intelligence that we use for our life on earth. But it is totally inadequate in the mental world after resuscitation. Those whose spiritual mind has not been operationalized have nowhere to go but to remain in the consciousness of the natural mind. This makes them insane and reduces their life to sub-human levels called hell.
In order to operationalize our spiritual mind we must regenerate the natural mind.
The natural mind must be regenerated in order to operationalize the spiritual mind. This is because we inherit sub-human traits in the natural mind. These sub-human traits give us many enjoyments to which we become very attached. Even though our rational level of thinking tells us that we must give up these sub-human enjoyments, we are unwilling to give them up. We love them and we make them part of our habits and our identity. They include all the loves of self for the sake of self. For instance, selfish loves regard only our own enjoyments, even if these actions hurt others. It I s more important for us to have those enjoyments than to stop hurting other people, whether they are strangers, family, or society and humankind universally. We violate the human rights of others. We operate below the level of our skill and intelligence. We mismanage, miscalculate, procrastinate, neglect, destroy many of the good things that belong to society and the human race – such as altruism, being useful, being peaceful, being honest, protecting innocence, rational judgment, etc. These are the human traits we inherit. They are our heavenly traits, while the former are our hellish traits.
We inherit both hellish and heavenly traits. These traits are grounded in, and managed by, our ruling love and its hierarchy of assistant sub-loves. The ruling love is the chief or dominant motive in our life. We are born with two ruling loves: a heavenly ruling love and a hellish ruling love. Every individual personality expresses these loves in a unique way. No one has exactly the same ruling loves. As we grow daily we acquire habits of emoting, thinking, and interacting. Each habit is controlled and managed by one of the ruling loves. You can see form this that every habit of thinking and doing, feeling and emoting, must be controlled either by a heavenly ruling love or a hellish ruling love. Every thought, attitude, or reaction must be sourced in either heaven or hell, also called, the Grand Human and the Grand Monster.
The purpose of living on earth for awhile is to develop our natural mind and consciousness through interaction with the physical environment through our physical organs and body. Once we become adults, we are mature enough in mental development to enter the lifelong process of regeneration that will operationalize the spiritual mind we need to access our eternal heavenly life as a conjugial couple with our soul mate. Operationalizing the spiritual mind through regenerating the natural mind is the central purpose for our life here on earth. God works with every individual either with or without acknowledgement by the individual. When not acknowledged as present in the person’s mind, God manages the events, thoughts, and emotions of the individual in such a way that the person has no inkling that anything in their mind is managed by anyone. And when these people hear of this idea of God’s presence and management in their mind, they deny it. Still, God manages everything in such a way as to maintain that individual in perfect freedom to choose between a hellish habit and enjoyment, or a heavenly habit and enjoyment. God activates their sense of conscience and natural morality in order to incline them to human traits, and to disincline them from sub-human traits. This protects them and the people with whom they live.
When God is acknowledged as present, the individual feels attracted to Sacred Scripture and other spiritual writings and topics. God then begins a personal relationship with that individual. In theistic psychology God in that relationship is called the Divine Psychologist. It is a relationship between the Divine Human and the mere human. Human beings are human when they acquire the traits of the Divine Human. When these traits are in human beings, they are called heavenly traits. When these traits are deliberately turned into their opposites through the freedom that God maintains in our mind, they are called hellish traits. The two are opposites to each other and cannot coexist at the same time without the heavenly being destroyed or “corrupted” (no longer heavenly).
Our ability to oppose hellish habits and enjoyments is the basis for the regeneration of our natural mind, which is necessary for the operationalizing of our spiritual mind, which contains our conjugial heaven with our soul mate in eternity. The Divine Psychologist first brings rational truths about life, God, heaven, hell, and regeneration. These are the essential theistic knowledges we must have in order to undergo the regeneration of our natural mind by the Divine Psychologist. He is doing the regenerating, and maintains the freedom to choose in the dilemma He brings to us on a daily basis. For example, we love to laugh out loud and have a good time with our friends at a party or other places. This activity can be carried out in a heavenly order or in a hellish order. The heavenly order is to have fun without being offensive to others. The hellish order is to have fun regardless of bothering other people. The Divine Psychologist brings this event to your life so that your heavenly ruling love may have an opportunity to take over and so that you can have fun without bothering other people who are trying to sleep, or who are trying rest and relax, and they have become innocent by-standers or neighbors of your noisy party.
To take another example: You have the habit of skipping appropriate dental care once or twice day. You either never acquired the habit of daily flossing, or you are performing it without consistency. This is called the hellish order for dental care. The hellish order brings with it all sorts of unpleasant and painful experiences to oneself, and it often hurts those you love, and innocent strangers in the community. The heavenly order of dental care is to think about the good you are doing by flossing, to think about the teeth you are maintaining and taking care of. This gives a good feeling, a heavenly feeling that is far deeper than the hellish enjoyment of skipping and ignoring. The heavenly order gives you results, healthy teeth, clean breath. Your friends and intimates are not exposed to the awful experience of receiving your hellish breath into their nostrils, where it is nauseating them. They can love you more as you make yourself more attractive to love. It alos shows you care about them, which is a good love that others can love in you.
Take another example: As you are looking around you, at work, in school, in a restaurant, at a party, you make comments to yourself about people there. This is normal. There is a heavenly order and a hellish order in which this activity is performed. The hellish order gives you hellish enjoyments, and the heavenly order gives you heavenly enjoyments. This is how you are operationalizing your spiritual mind. You choose to perform daily activities in a way that conform to the heavenly order. This makes your spiritual to respond more and more, higher and higher, being readied by your actions, to serve as the consciousness of your eternal conjugial heaven with your soul mate. The hellish order of thinking about other people is to enjoy putting down, judging them, ridiculing them, resenting them, wanting vengeance on them, wishing bad things to happen to them, wanting to take away what they have and give them to yourself, etc. etc. Doing these hellish mental acts give us pleasure, enjoyments, hellish happiness.
The heavenly order of thinking about people is to think of both the good and bad in every person, and to honor or love the good in them, and to ignore or not love the bad in them, hoping and wishing that they strengthen their resolve for the good, and weaken or abandon their attachment to the bad. This is the heavenly order of thinking about others. It creates a heaven for you, if you think this way, and it does not take away anything or punish the other person. The heavenly order honors the humanity and right to dignity of every human being. This includes the heavenly order of loving not the person, but the good in every person.
The regeneration of our natural mind proceeds by a specific process that we need to know about and cooperate with.
As we know from experience in learning skills, we go through intermediate learning stages. So we can’t expect to regenerate our natural mind by going from hellish motives and enjoyments directly to heavenly motives and enjoyments. There are transitional states of mediate good that is not yet good, but is compatible with genuine good, and eventually leads to good. For example, consider how we learn to be successful in our jobs when we first enter the workforce as a teenager or later. At first we learn to do things so that we don’t get fired. This is not a hellish or selfish motive, but it is not our ultimate goal, which is to love to do a good job for the satisfactions it brings us, as we are thinking about how we benefit others in one way or another by the way we do our job.
There are two stages here: (1) doing our job so we can satisfy our love for not getting fired; (2) doing our job so we can satisfy our love for being useful. The first love is not yet heavenly. The second love is heavenly because the ruling love it belongs to is the love of being useful to others, and this is one of the chief heavenly loves. Consider another example. Since gas at the pump has gone to four dollars a gallon compared to less than half of that just a few years ago, more drivers are learning to save gas by what they drive how they drive. Newspaper stories and Web discussion groups have been discussing the practice of “hypermiling” which involves using a collection of strategies, each of which saves gas. The motivation to save gas can be heavenly or hellish, and the difference is observable in how drivers are performing the activity of saving gas.
Hellish hypermiling techniques include “drafting” (following illegally close behind another vehicle), “pulse & glide” (moving up to wanted speed, then letting the vehicle coast on its own back down, then giving it enough gas back to the wanted speed, and so on – while motorists following behind are subjected to this pattern), turning the engine off and coasting when other vehicles are around, etc. These bad hypermiling strategies increase the risk and inconvenience on others who are being subjected to these illegal driving methods. Heavenly hypermiling techniques include keeping tire pressure up, using higher quality engine oil, carrying less load, avoiding unnecessary acceleration, avoiding the emotional use of the gas pedal, maintaining proper car maintenance schedules, driving less when possible. From these consequences of their actions you can see that the motive or love to save gas can be either a hellish motive (“It’s good for me, and too bad for the cars around me.”), or a heavenly motive or love (“It’s good for everyone, and no one is punished through it.”).
Here is another common instance of an intermediate good that leads eventually to more genuine good and to heaven. It is the idea many people have that heaven is a reward from God for the good deeds we accomplished, and hell Is a place of punishment from God for the bad deeds we accomplished. This intermediate good is not fully compatible with the rational understanding of Sacred Scripture and God, from which we realize that God is pure love and cannot punish people for something they did in the past, especially in such a horrific way as what we imagine happens in hell as a form of punishment and torture. We rationally understand that God is good and omnipotent, hence does not have such loves that involve the satisfaction of punishing people who have evil loves and hurt others. Instead, God makes a way of isolating the acts of such people and keeping others safe from the consequences.
As you by now understand from what precedes, that heaven and hell in eternity are not rewards and punishments but consequences of one’s own ruling loves. Swedenborg observed that when people with a hellish ruling love (though not yet knowing it), ask after resuscitation, to be led to heaven, when they are there, they become numb, see nothing, and experience inner torture as if they are falling into a death swoon. These are the anatomical and physiological consequences of a ruling love existing in the wrong mental layer. The individual feels like dying, in agony, and being tortured. It Is not possible for a hellish ruling love to live in a heavenly environment. Hence it is that God makes provision for hellish loves to exist in the unregenerated natural mind after resuscitation. Hell Is not a place of punishment, but a mental state provided of the mercy of God, who is taking care of those who love hellish traits and consciousness, so that they too may have an environment in which they can pursue their loves in eternity.
What people do in their mind individually sums up to the level of humanity in a society or civilization. Humanity on this earth has been evolving in consciousness since the beginning. It took thousands of generations to cumulate the modern scientific civilization in which we live today. We get a good indication of the three phases of our individual regeneration when we consider the three phases of the collective evolution of rational and scientific thinking that evolved in the Western cultures during the past three thousand years. We know from the Swedenborg Reports that God manages the level of our thinking and feeling through the diffusion of knowledge and principles based in Sacred Scripture. We can contrast the level of thinking that is evident in the literal and historical meaning of the Old Testament Sacred Scripture (written between 3000 and 2000 BC), the New Testament Sacred Scripture (written between 35 and 100 AD), and the Writings Sacred Scripture, which we call the Swedenborg Reports (written in the eighteenth century).
Our motives and thinking in layers 9A and 9C (sensual-corporeal mind), matches the level of thinking of the Old Testament civilization. When we are still children mentally, we think a lot about being punished and getting rewards from our parents, teachers, and other adults. Our motives (9A) serve the ruling love of “me first.” We want our childhood pleasures and conveniences, insist on them no matter what, and throw a temper tantrum when we are opposed in our loves. We give in to our loves of owning the toys of others by taking them away from other children, if we can. We always look out for “number one” and we enjoy being cruel to other children who are different or who are more successful than we are. As children we think of God as a Father Figure that punishes and rewards what we do. We also have heavenly loves such as the love of obeying our parents and the love of being good, of cleaning up, and sharing food and toys. When we remain at this level of thinking and emoting as we grow up, we become corporeal minded adults, living a life that is mixed with prejudice and selfishness, and also with pride in parenting, loyalty to one’s own group, and a steady work ethic for self and family.
Those of us who grow out of the corporeal mentality of living, do so by acquiring higher mental loves that are available to our consciousness in layer 8 (abstract materialism). We must have a love of learning and being instructed, in order to move on in thinking and emoting to level 8C and 8A. We learn scientific explanations for everything around us. We begin to understand the objective material world around us. We can understand management and government principles, so that our laws become oriented towards supporting democracy and equal opportunity. We can create abstract forms of art and architecture. We can build an engineering industry capable of manufacturing machines, computers, and sophisticated armaments that can destroy and kill many people at once. In the United States in 2008 people will donate one billion dollars a day in voluntary charitable contributions. Every individual has equal rights under the law. One third of the population is overweight or obese, and half of all marriages end in divorce. Millions of children grow up without adequate medical care or parenting. And so on. I am drawing here a mixture of hellish and heavenly values and attitudes.
Such as are the individuals in the United States, such is that nation. One is a reflection of the other. The mentality of the United States is grounded in the New Testament Sacred Scripture. The Old Testament Sacred Scripture at mentality 9 focuses on the corporeal and the physical. God commands people what physical things they must perform to merit a fruitful life here on earth (e.g., specific animal sacrifices with specific rituals). God is portrayed as angry when people do forbidden physical things. God then rages in wrath and screams vengeance, and takes it out on the people, on their children, and on their children’s children. The punishments and the rewards are physical. There is almost nothing specific mentioned about the afterlife. This corporeal spirituality at layer 9 mentality, contrasts with the abstract and materialistic spirituality at layer 8 mentality, to which the New Testament is addressed. Now God is no longer portrayed as partial to just one nation and religion (the “Chosen People” in the Old Testament). God is now portrayed as universal, regardless of culture and religion.
In the abstracted mentality of the New Testament Sacred Scripture (layer 8), the new consciousness is attained that God wants to relate to us in the mental world as much as, or more than, He wants to relate to us in the physical world. Sinning is now defined as a mental corruption. The physical becomes secondary and is seen as the mere result of the mental. By themselves, physical rituals, sacrifices, and regulations are meaningless and useless. It’s the thought and motive in the physical act that must be examined and judged. Now for the first time in Western history, the New Testament Sacred Scripture reveals an astonishing and shattering new scientific fact, which is, that the afterlife of eternity is the mental world that is already familiar to us. One instance of this revelation is the well known declaration of Jesus in the New Testament that “the kingdom of God is within you.” The “kingdom of God” refers to heaven, and “within you” refers to our mental world. Hence it is that “sinning in the mind” is the actual sin that bars heaven to us. Not by punishment – but by the love that attaches us to thinking that way.
The Old Testament (layer 9) is for the concrete-corporeal mind. The New Testament (layer 8) is for the abstract-sensuous mind. The Swedenborg Reports (layer 7) are for the external-rational mind. These three anatomical layers are the origin of the three degrees of human consciousness and mentality in this world.
The Swedenborg Reports reveal that both the Old and New Testaments are written in the code of correspondences, as it applies to each level, which is distinct. It is shown that when you know these correspondences and apply them to the literal text using the specified procedures, the new underlying meaning that is derived is entirely at a different level of consciousness. While the literal sense of the Old Testament Sacred Scripture is addressed to layer 9 (corporeal-sensuous mind), its correspondential sense is actually addressed to layers 7i, 6, 5, 4 – in other words, to the spiritual mind, not at all to the natural mind. Layer 7i is the interior of the natural-rational mind (layer 7e), which forms the exterior of that layer. The interior anatomical portion of the natural-rational mind receives its influx of reality from the higher spiritual mind (layers 6, 5, 4), while the exterior anatomical portion of the natural-rational mind receives its influx of reality from the lower natural layers of the mind (layers 8 and 9). Hence it is that we have two discretely different registers of thinking available to us while on this earth. One is a rationality based on the external natural world (layer 7e), and the other is a rationality based on the interior spiritual world (layer 7i).
We do not, like Swedenborg, have consciousness in our spiritual mind, while we are conscious in the natural mind. Swedenborg talked to some of the people who had lived on this earth during the initial generations of human beings, many thousands of years ago. He was able to interview them when he visited their heaven in layer 4. The are mentioned in Sacred Scripture as the “Most Ancient Church.” They are described as a celestial race, possessing a whole brain, while our race of humanity that came afterward is called the spiritual race, and we possess a split-brain with left and right hemispheres. These people had dual consciousness, like Swedenborg, who was given the ability at age 57, while they had it since birth. At any rate, I don’t know how far the two situations are similar since they were whole-brained, while Swedenborg was split-brained.
Swedenborg found out that their Sacred Scripture was “written on their heart,” which meant that they were spiritually “online” with the mental world of eternity, where their grandparents and great-grant parents lived in layer 4. While on earth they looked at the physical world around them as representative effects of mental causes. Today we too can do this when we adopt the thinking order and rationality that is expressed in the universal correspondential sense of Sacred Scripture. These meanings or truths raise our consciousness when we allow it to be immersed in the thinking of correspondences.
The pre-modern person was unable to think in correspondences. The wisest of the ancients were able to immerse their mind in the knowledge of correspondences, but it took a lifetime of harsh spiritual discipline, and only a few people in each generation could master it, and pass the knowledge on to the next generation. But today’s modern mind can easily handle the complexity and rationality of thinking in correspondences. The study of theistic psychology gives every student the ability to acquire the mental skill of thinking in correspondences. In the future, thinking in correspondences will be taught in public schools to children as part of the general literacy curriculum. It will greatly enhance the interest and receptivity of physical subjects such as biology, farming, husbandry, art, dance, sports, hand craft, etc. Thinking in correspondences is to translate the sensory input from external-natural (layer 9, 8, 7e) to interior-natural (layer 7i).
The duality of reality is expressed in the dualism of the external-natural and the interior-natural.
When we see the interior-natural of an event, quality, or object, we see its cause, its spiritual origin in the mental world of eternity (layer 7i), but when we see the exterior-natural of an event, quality, or object, we see the mere effects, the representation of its true reality in the mental world of eternity (layer 7e). The content and meanings in our exterior-rational thinking is limited to the appearances of reality. Imagine someone buying a large plot of land for just a few hundred dollars. Hard to believe – until you find out that the plot of land is a reflection in a mirror, or a painting on the wall, or just a video of the real thing. Now you can see that the person who bought this for a few hundred dollars got fleeced. If you take the appearances of reality to be reality, then your consciousness and thinking will be limited to layer 8 (these being materialistic abstractions of appearances).
According to the Swedenborg Reports, God has revealed the knowledge of correspondences to the modern mind of humanity in order to allow science and education to be the vehicle for its transmission to the new generations. There are critical benefits available to people who have been prepared for resuscitation through the skill of thinking in correspondences. Regeneration of the inherited natural mind progresses to the degree that people are willing to think in correspondences. The more the natural mind is regenerated, the more the spiritual mind is enabled. There is therefore a direct relation between thinking in correspondences and the quality of our life in eternity.
All genuine Sacred Scripture given by God anywhere anytime to some culture or people, is addressed to the spiritual mind when considered in the correspondential sense. In the new millennium of 2000, when I first published theistic psychology on the World Wide Web, another landmark step was taken in the history of research on human consciousness. Theistic psychology is defined as the scientific knowledge of God that is extracted from the correspondential sense of Sacred Scripture. This new way of thinking in science (interior-natural layer 7i), begins a new age in science, leaving behind the monism of materialism, and immersing itself in the new methodology of theistic science.
The dualist thinking in science (layers 7e and 7i together), integrates into a rational unity the physical and the mental, the temporal and the eternal. At last, science can explore cause-effect relations between the rational and the sensory, the universal and the local, the spiritual and the natural, the mental and the physical. God has created a dual reality which we can now recognize and make part of our literacy, our culture, our government and industry. Every detail of society is a representative of some eternal reality in the mental world of eternity. Managing society will be far more successful and effective when we understand how every detail is caused by some mental love that is sourced either in the Grand Human (mental layers 4, 5, 6) or in the Grand Monster (mental layers -7, -8, -9). Similarly, managing ourselves will be far more effective if we understand how our loves today create our future in eternity.
The powers of a new scientific thinking in the interior-natural mind is awesome to behold. Every human being possesses all the anatomical layers of the human mind. Nothing whatsoever prevents us from operating our life from the interior-natural layer (7i) instead of the exterior-natural layer (7e). Nothing prevents us – except our own ruling love. Love prevents thinking that is contrary to love’s fulfillment. Such as our love is, such is our thinking. When we love materialistic loves more than we love spiritual loves, our natural mind is called a “little hell.” This is our daily consciousness, the meanings and thoughts with which we operate our conscious life and manage our identity as a person. But when we love spiritual loves more than we love natural loves, our natural mind is called a “little heaven.”
When we begin our regeneration in young adulthood, we turn our natural mind more and more into a little heaven. This means that our feelings (A), thoughts (C), and actions (S) are conjoined and arranged in a heavenly order, that is, in the order of layers 6, 5, and 4 (the “Grand Human”). Until then our natural mind was a little hell activated by thoughts and feelings sourced in the Grand Monster (layers -7, -8, -9). The people in these mental layers who are connected to us in our unregenerate states, are collectively a hell as a spiritual society, and each member’s mind is a little hell. The negative marker indicates that these layers were not regenerated prior to resuscitation. As discussed earlier, people after resuscitation who imagine that they live in a physical world are insane, and live out a delusional life in eternity based on fantasy and make-believe.
One striking example is given by the people in the hellish layers that Swedenborg observed who live in a collective and mutual fantasy of owning a fortune of gold. By various means and laborious efforts over a long period, each member is able to acquire a few tiny pieces of gold. At regular intervals they all gather together in one room, each placing their few pieces on the table. When these grow into a large heap of gold, they sit around it in silence, watching it, and imagining that this is their own gold. One man that Swedenborg interviewed said that they do this when they begin to experience an interior compulsion to see a large heap of gold that they can imagine is their own. He said that they know rationally that the gold they own is actually a tiny fraction of the large heap. And yet, they are able to fantasize that all of it is their own.
The fantasy is actually created by their ruling love. They are obsessively slavish to this love. The rational thoughts they can think remain on the outside of themselves. The ruling love will allow one thought that it keeps close by – the thought of “All this is mine, mine alone.” This false sensory reality (S) appearing in the cognitive organ (C) is constructed there by the love in the affective organ (A). It is their love for such a fantasy that is so extreme, so much more intense than any other love they can have. This is the top rank in their hierarch of satisfaction and enthusiasm. This is the way they can experience life again, or being alive again – like after a long sickness. He said that this state lasts for awhile, and then they all experience the irresistible need for a ‘recharge’ session. If they are prevented from it, they begin to feel depressed, as if all enthusiasm of living has departed from them. Then they are revived again after the fantasy recharge session.
The awful thing about this, I think, is that in between the fantasy recharge sessions, their folly does not diminish. The recharge experience works only on their affective organ, where the ruling love sits and commands. Their cognitive reality remains insane and unreal, filled with un-neos of everything. The mad ruling love (A) turns their mind and their society (C) into a mad, mad world (S). There is no consistency of growth and mental development. The people in that mental state become progressively more mad, less capable of having human feelings and rational thoughts. They are in a degraded form of sub-human life in terms of their emotions, their reasoning, and their interactions with each other.
The Battle of Heaven and Hell in Our Mind
Consider a common situation. We have the love of living in a clean place and keeping our living space clean and uncluttered. We enjoy that when someone else does it for us. We enjoy clean and orderly living and work spaces. We have a love for these things. This is a heavenly love since nothing in the perfection of the mental heaven of eternity can be less than perfect. Our love has the power to make things perfect in our mental world. But we don’t have the love of cleaning. Instead, we have the love of not cleaning, the love of avoiding cleaning, the love of not having to do what it takes to keep things orderly and clean around our living spaces. Many people hate cleaning chores. Many people do cleaning chores while they are hating it. Many people procrastinate and postpone cleaning because they hate it. Yet they all love a clean place. So something is wrong here.
What’s wrong with our natural mind is always the same thing: it is contaminated by inherited hellish tendencies and enjoyments. These are called hellish not out of moralistic judgment, but out of rational and medical assessment. In theistic medicine, the definition of “hellish” is any love that is sourced in the Grand Monster. The definition of “heavenly” is any love that is sourced in the Grand Human. The scientific and medical fact is that every love is an organic operation of the affective organ (also called the “will”). The affective organ is activated by an influx from either the Grand Human (or mental layers 4, 5, 6), or in the Grand Monster (our unregenerate mental layers -9, -8, -7). There is no other source of activation. These are the only two possibilities, given the mental anatomy revealed in the Swedenborg Reports. We inherit from our parental line, built-in connections to these two sources. Our life as an infant is activated by these two sources.
Observe an infant’s behavior and you will notice both heavenly traits (like innocence, curiosity, smile, focus on faces, etc.), as well as hellish traits (battles with parents about eating, lying down, sleeping, not touching, not eating, etc.). In childhood, the hellish traits become more visible and problematic – disobedience, stubbornness, rebellion, temper tantrum, screaming, hitting, getting away, not cooperating, etc. In adolescence and young adulthood we begin to see a lot of rebellion, criminality, addiction, destructiveness, emotional problems, selfishness, irrationality, etc. Every hellish act or habit comes from a hellish love, which comes from the people who live in the Grand Monster layers of the mental world of eternity. It’s a downhill journey. All we need to do is to give in to our hellish loves until we have a hellish ruling love entrenched at the top of the love hierarchy in our affective organ (layers -9A, -8A, -7A).
Immediately after resuscitation we are fully ready and eager to join one of the numerous mental societies of the Grand Monster. We are inexorably and irresistibly drawn to a particular society that is closest in compatibility to the hellish ruling love we brought with us in our natural mind (layers 9, 8, 7), from our life on earth. This is a downhill journey. It’s easy. You just coast with the river of inherited traits and enjoyments, living your life with them, enjoying them, loving them, becoming part of the society in which our ruling love is sourced. Swedenborg observed that when people first enter their “place” in the Grand Monster they are overjoyed, having the feeling that they at last have arrived “home.” The people around them who welcome them look familiar, feel like brothers, sisters, and cousins This is because all along we have been connected with these people as we developed our specific hellish loves.
God must intervene in this downhill slide towards and into hell. Every modern human being born today would take that affective slide, and arrive at their resuscitation surrounded by and grounded in some society of the Grand Monster. When they open their eyes after resuscitation is complete, and begin their final journey to immortality in eternity, they are surrounded by people from their society, and follow them quickly with gladness. Little do they know, or suspect, that after the introductions and the honeymoon period, their life turns into a hellish misery. They discover that the people around them are cruel and masterful manipulators. Their evil loves progressively worsens and creates a monster or demon, where a human being was before. This happens because the hellish ruling loves systematically finds and destroys any heavenly love remaining active. The individual becomes a mere evil caricature of the former self. The person is no longer a mixture of good traits and hellish traits. Imagine what you would be like if everything good and intelligent were put to sleep in your mind, and everything evil and stupid were to be intensified and magnified. Such is the person you would be in the hell of your eternity.
This is why God must intervene on behalf of all those people who are willing to undergo the process of regeneration before their resuscitation. This is a process that starts in young adulthood and goes on for the rest of your life on earth. God as the Divine Psychologist arranges the events of your life and the thoughts of your mind in such a way as to confront you with natural, spiritual, and celestial temptations. These are mental states during which you are consciously reflecting on your regeneration, while facing a dilemma or choice. The Divine Psychologist keeps you in a perfect balance by connecting you unconsciously to one of the spiritual societies in the Grand Human and a counter-society in the Grand Monster. The loves of the people in the Grand Human flow into that portion of your affective organ that contains your hierarchy of heavenly loves and sub-loves. The loves of the people in the Grand Monster flow into that portion of your affective organ that contains your hierarchy of hellish loves and sub-loves. The heavenly and hellish loves flowing in can actually be felt very intensely during the temptation moments.
For example, during your reflection of cleaning up your work space, you actually feel the intense motive to clean up. This is from the loves of the Grand Human flowing in. At the same time, or moments later, or alternately between the two, you feel like not cleaning up, like letting it go this time, postponing it. This postponement gives you an intense love and satisfaction. You are in a perfect balance. A heavenly love and a hellish love precisely oppose each other in your will. The Divine Psychologist manages with omnipotence and omniscience to keep you in this balance by maintaining the contact between you and the opposed societies. Every time you have this temptation you are given the opportunity to reject the love of not cleaning up, and to attach yourself to the love of cleaning up. That’s how the process of regeneration operates. You can see that you have plenty of time, plenty of opportunities – but not a limitless amount. Your time comes and you are thrown into the dying and resuscitation process. Then it’s too late to change anything after that. Your ruling love now at the top of your love hierarchy, makes the final decisions.
You can see from all this that “hellish” and “heavenly” are objective medical terms associated with mental anatomy, not subjective terms that are moralistic or judgmental.
The dying and resuscitation process lasts about 30 hours. Swedenborg observed thousands of people in the course of 27 years of observation who were undergoing the dying and resuscitation process. Swedenborg was allowed to undergo the dying and resuscitation process in order to understand the details of the procedure. He reports that upon awakening from this process people first see the faces of the spiritual medics who are assigned by God to handle every resuscitating person. There is a special zone in the mental world of eternity (or “spiritual world of the afterlife”), where resuscitation takes place. It is a biological process completely unconscious to the individual. Swedenborg says that God is especially close in attendance, managing the medical skills of the volunteers who came “down” out into the mental zone of resuscitation. These volunteers live in their mental layer 4 (celestial-rational consciousness). I was very surprised when I first read about these details in the Swedenborg Reports. It is quite likely that you too are surprised at these details. The mind is flooded with obvious questions, all of which come down to this one central question: Is this fact or fiction?
When I first started reading the Swedenborg Reports in 1981 I started with no knowledge of who he was or what these books are about. I just started reading one of the 27 Swedenborg volumes on the library shelf. Since I was a professor I had done this many times before about a favorite topic – the mind, spirituality, consciousness, God, the Bible, immortality, the afterlife. I confess here that I was little motivated to finish these books. I went as far as I could to keep my interest up. I felt guilty about this, wondering what was wrong with me. Other people love books, talk about books and authors, look forward to more books. They are very involved in books. I thought I was too. For many years I kept buying books to add to my collection. I kept all my books from college and graduate school. When I moved from one place to another, boxing and carting the books was my biggest expense. Again, I confess here that most of the text of these books remained unread by me. So I loved books. Why then was I not reading them like other people normally do.
Actually, I am still surprised to find out from people I talk with that they don’t read books. Swedenborg mentions that God (whom he always reverently referred to as “the Lord”), forbade him to read many books he may have otherwise read. This had to do with books on the subjects that he was going to write about, namely: Sacred Scripture, God, the spiritual world, angels, theology, and doctrines of the Church. Swedenborg’s thinking on these subjects had to remain neutral and impartial between the various religious and philosophical factions. He had to remain the impartial scientist and researcher. Swedenborg’s mind was the human vehicle by which God was constructing a new science to be known as Theistic Science, of which theistic psychology is the first instance.
This book written in 2008 is an executive summary, if you will, of my efforts to build a foundation for theistic psychology, which I began in 2000 after 19 years of studying the Swedenborg Reports. These were the only books that I have ever voluntarily read in full. Not only that, I have read them several times, I listen to audio versions of them every night when I go to bed, every day when I drive to and from work, every time I’m on an air flight, or in a doctor’s waiting room. I love having those audio versions that I listen to silently through ear phones, bothering no one. At the beginning I sometimes had the urge to start talking to people and to give them the good news – Did you know we are immortal? Did you know we are born into eternity with a spiritual body? Did you know that the Bible has a hidden spiritual meaning? Do you know why God allows evil in the world? Do you know what happens to children who die? To old people who die? Etc. etc.
It was fascinating for me to discover that people were not as interested as I was in these topics. I could not get over this. How could they just have a sort of take it or leave it attitude towards these topics? What other topic could be more important and fascinating that to know who is God, what kind of life do we have after death, do we lived a married life, do we have a body with which to enjoy sensual things such as we know them in the physical body or will we be sexless, foodless, passionless, and just a floating ghost or a dream fantasy…How does God manage every detail of every person’s life? How can Sacred Scripture be Divine and Holy? What makes it Holy? Did God really speak those words? Where is their supernatural power?
What is “mental”? Is it real? Is it as real as what is physical? What is the relation between the physical and the mental? Is it the same as the relation between the natural and spiritual? Are there angels? Devils? Do they influence people’s lives? What are natural laws? Does God manage these directly or indirectly? Do we have a spiritual body? What does it look like and what is made of? Do we mental organs, or only mental functions? Are some people born evil? How can people improve themselves and society? What does it take to have peace in the world? Why do some children die? Are there animals in the afterlife? What are the basic scientific laws God wants humanity to know about? Etc. etc.
I apologize for this long string of questions. They show you what some of the topics are in the Swedenborg Reports. Rational and full answers are provided to each of these questions. These were my questions, and the answers I sought in books in my adult life. I did not find the answers in those books. I only found incomplete, partially inconsistent, aesthetically inelegant speculations, theories, and intellectual constructions of vast proportions. I was desolate and desperate, my mind starving for rational truths about reality and the future. No one had them. No, not one. Until the Swedenborg Reports. Since then, everyone anytime anywhere can have rational, scientific, and complete answers to all these questions, to begin with, and many more as one continues studying them. Why? What is so special about the Swedenborg Reports?
The Swedenborg Reports are written in natural-rational correspondences of Divine Speech or Divine Rationality. In other words, Divine Truth in the form of spiritual light from the Spiritual Sun, flows first into the cognitive organs of those who are conscious there in anatomical layer 4C of the mental world of eternity. This highest level of human consciousness is also called “Third Heaven” and “celestial angels.” Our thinking layer 4C is by means of the celestial-rational correspondences in which is written the Sacred Scripture version that is in layer 4.
Second, the people who are conscious in mental layer 5C react to the activity in layer 4C above them, or within them. Our thinking in layer 5C (“Second Heaven” or “spiritual angels”) is based on the spiritual-rational correspondences of the version of Sacred Scripture they have in mental layer 5C.
Third, the people who are conscious in mental layer 6C react to the activity in layer 5C above them, or within them. Our thinking layer 6C (“First Heaven” or “spiritual-natural angels”) is based on the spiritual-natural correspondences in which is written the Sacred Scripture version that is in layer 6C.
Fourth, the people on earth who are undergoing regeneration of the natural mind (layers 7, 8, 9), react to the activity that is going on in their spiritual mind (layers 6, 5, 4). When we are conscious in mental layer 7Ci (the interior-natural mind) we are open to react to the correspondential sense of the Swedenborg Reports. Through reflecting on the correspondential sense, constructing a rational meaning out of it, we are able to react by correspondence to the activities in the layers of consciousness above us (layers 6, 5, 4).
Fifth and Sixth, the people on earth who are unwilling to study the correspondences in Sacred Scripture, react to the materialistic (layer 8C) and corporeal (layer 9C) components that only represent and correspond to the real operations that take place in their higher spiritual layers of consciousness (layers 7i, 6, 5, 4).
You can see from this that the descent of the Divine Neo, or exteriorization process of creation, goes through the sequential discrete anatomical layers of the mental world of eternity. At each successive layer the correspondences of Divine Truth or Divine Speech become more opaque, more covered over, more distant in meaning and consciousness. By the time Divine Speech has exteriorized and descended to mental layers 8 and 9, the Divine Truth has been transformed five or six times, translated into lower and lower forms of spiritual truth that is comprehensible to people whose consciousness is based in physical appearances of the senses (layer 9C), and on the logical abstractions based on those appearances.
This sequence of exteriorization of spiritual light through the mental world of eternity is replicated in exact proportions in the history, development, and evolution of human civilizations. The Old Testament Sacred Scripture was delivered to humanity three thousand years ago. The literal and historical meaning was addressed to the mentality of the people living in that age. But unbeknownst to them, the entire sequence of descent of Divine Truth in correspondences was contained within the literal sense of that Sacred Scripture. This follows the Divine law that sequential degrees are together in simultaneous degree. The first of the sequence is the center of the simultaneous. It is the deepest, most hidden. This is layer 4 with its celestial-rational correspondences to Divine Truth, the closest there can be in human minds. This layer can be recovered by extraction through the application of the laws of correspondences applied as prescribed in the Swedenborg Reports.
Layer 5 is next in the literal sense, less hidden, more visible, easier to extract. This layer allows us to extract the spiritual-rational correspondences hidden the literal of Sacred Scripture. Layer 6 is closest to the literal sense. It is less hidden and more visible in the extraction process.
So when we look at Sacred Scripture we are looking at the outside of Divine Truth, transformed and represented by correspondences. We can reflect on the spiritual-natural correspondences (layer 6) that lie hidden just below the surface of the literal and historical details being related in the text. Similarly with layer 5, which raises our consciousness to the spiritual-rational level of thinking and feeling (“Second Heaven”). Finally we can access layer 4, which raises our consciousness to the celestial-rational level of quasi-omniscience.
All Sacred Scripture that is genuine and from God must go through the sequence described above, and therefore, all Sacred Scripture contains the entire sequence to be extracted. While the literal sense is cultural, time-bound, and ethnic, applying mostly to one people, the correspondential senses that are extracted are not cultural, because not natural. The topics are spiritual, that is, relating the mental world of eternity.
It is anatomical layer 7i (interior-natural mind) that makes this extraction process possible. The Divine Psychologist must first activate this layer which otherwise remains dormant and non-functional. God activates layer 7i when the individual begins the regeneration process. The activation process is progressive, only a little at the beginning, and much more after that as we make progress in our regeneration. The more we resist our inherited hellish loves, the more our loves become heavenly, and the more activation takes place in our interior-natural mind.
This process slows down or dies when we make up our own interpretations to the literal of Sacred Scripture, using human knowledge, nontheistic science, and theory. This was done for hundreds of years in the case of the Old and New Testament Sacred Scriptures. And yet, after thousands of books written over hundreds of years, not one of them was able to present the correspondential sense that lay hidden within. This is because God prevents that path of thinking in order to protect people from “profaning” Sacred Scripture. This refers to destroying the spiritual mind, or, preventing it from ever being opened. When this is done, the fate of the individual is a progressively worsening hell to eternity. To protect people from profaning the knowledge of correspondences it remained hidden until the Swedenborg Reports, which begin the modern era of theistic science.
With respect to consciousness, individual development recapitulates collective evolution.
The regeneration process begins the phases of spiritual development. All spiritual development progresses by the elevation of our consciousness. Our consciousness exists at the level of the meanings with which we think. Early in the regeneration process we think with the literal meaning of the Sacred Scripture that we acknowledge as the basis of our relationship to God. Our consciousness is immersed in the literal meanings. For instance, when I first started reading the Swedenborg Reports my consciousness was immersed in the literal meaning of it. This literal is written in natural-rational correspondences at layer 7e, the external portion of the rational mind (layer 7). This layer is the highest of the three anatomical layers of the natural mind (8 and 9 are the other two).
As already explained, our thinking in this external layer of the rational mind (7e) is based on our own ability to figure out the meaning and try to make rational sense out of it. This is the approach or method we use when we study a textbook in a high school or college course. Also, when we read a technical manual for building or assembling something – we read the literal sense of the instructions and apply them to the physical objects to which they refer. This approach to the task of extracting the hidden layers of Sacred Scripture, is therefore done from the external layer of the natural-rational mind (layer 7e), using our own intelligence and methods of discourse analysis. This approach fails because it rests on layers 8C and 9C, which are time bound, culture bound, place bound, and ignorance bound. These are mere representations and appearances, not the real thing.
The real thing is what comes from the Spiritual Sun in the form of spiritual light substance and spiritual heat substance flowing into the mental world of humanity. This is real. This is the reality. By the time this reality or truth filters down to layers 8 and 9, the literal meanings no longer show all the hidden layers which the literal meaning covers over. This fundamental limitation and existential problem is overcome by the Divine Psychologist managing things in every individual’s mind form birth to endless eternity. In order for this to happen we ourselves must develop a love for the Divine arrangement, which is truthfully reflected in the arrangement of feelings, thoughts, and sensations in layers 4, 5, 6. We are not conscious in these layers prior to resuscitation. How then can we re-arrange our natural mind into a “little heaven” if we cannot rely on our own thinking regarding what Sacred Scripture says that God wants from us?
The answer is that we cannot rely on our interpretation of Sacred Scripture but must rely on enlightenment from the Divine Psychologist. This enlightenment is given in proportion to our love for cooperating with the Divine Psychologist in our regeneration. The Swedenborg Reports reveal that when we read Sacred Scripture the people in layers 6, 5, 4 are involved through correspondence. While we think of the literal sense as we read, they think of the inner sense hidden within the literal. First in line are the people in layer 6 who think of the spiritual-natural correspondences that are just below the surface literal meanings. Next in line are the people in layer 5 who think of the spiritual-rational correspondences that are two degrees below the surface literal meanings. Next in line are the people in layer 4 who think of the celestial-rational correspondences that are deeply buried below the surface literal meanings.
When a child reads Sacred Scripture the people in layer 4 are especially moved by the celestial correspondences that are hidden in the inmost sense. They can see this inmost celestial sense more clearly when a child reads Sacred Scripture because the ideas they have of the meanings are purely literal in the appearances (layer 9), rather than in the abstracted thoughts of the appearances, which is more nearly how adults read the language and style of ancient Sacred Scripture. The people in layers 6, 5, 4 are affected by the correspondence and are conscious of being affected – but they are not conscious or aware of any personal features of the people by whom they are affected, such as their identity, gender, or cultural origin. The vertical community operates by the laws of correspondences and without the conscious awareness of the people involved.
Progress in regeneration is possible to the extent that we do not consult our own self-intelligence when we are engaged in the process of extracting correspondences from Sacred Scripture. Neither can we consult the self-intelligence of someone else, which is also inevitably based on the order and arrangement of the physical world (layers 9C, 8C, 7eC). Our success in regeneration can come only from the interior layer of our natural-rational mind (7iC). An example of this is theistic psychology which excludes all hypotheses and theories that we can come up with about the hidden layers of Sacred Scripture. It includes only that which is explained in the literal sense of the Swedenborg Reports, but not on the literal sense itself, but the correspondential senses that lie within it.
Layer 7iC thinking is possible only as enlightened thinking. Anyone has this enlightened thinking when willing to use the information for one’s regeneration. This is the only love that will work. This love connects the individual to the Divine Psychologist in a conscious rational relationship in layer 7Ci. This new consciousness is called spiritual consciousness and is at first spiritual-natural (layer 6), but advances further depending on our willingness to fight our temptations in spiritual combat.
Regeneration is a lifelong process of getting rid of our hellish loves, and replacing them with new heavenly loves. The replacement of old loves with new loves is an organic process involving spiritual substances in the mental world of eternity. We are these living spiritual organic entities. Our identity and uniqueness comes from the unique personal “print” that God assigns to each of us at conception, which gets actualized in birth and maturation. Our mental organs are permanent, immortal, eternal. Our unique self must therefore be permanent, immortal, eternal. We have this immortality and permanence from the substances out of which we are constructed, namely, the spiritual heat and spiritual light flowing out of God into the mental world of eternity.
Our unique identity becomes more and more personal, more and more our own loves, as we live out our immortal existence, constructing a mental dwelling place for our self and our conjugial soul mate. This place is joined and enriched by new neighbors that continuously fill that mental dwelling place. Each new couple appears to us as family, having an appearance and manners that resemble ours. It is an idyllic mental dwelling in the world of rational ether where loves and truths are God’s building blocks. We have more and more of God’s good and truth as we develop more intense passion and attraction towards the heavenly order, which is the order of God’s Mind, and the reality of creation and existence by God.
The perfect human heavenly order is the inmost of every human mind (layer 4). Every human being receives a perfect and unique soul “print” in creation. This unique person is born to change the whole race and universe. Every soul that is added and integrated into the Grand Human (layers 4, 5, 6) changes the Grand Human forever. God is building or growing the living Grand Human into ever grander perfection. This is the evolution of consciousness of the human race. This building up and perfection process involves the adding and integrating of new souls. If a soul doesn’t get to the Grand Human after resuscitation of its spiritual body, then it is added to the Grand Monster. This is an eternal mental dwelling place for unrelenting selfish and cruel people. They have their own life of freedom to do as they please, which they do by being incredibly cruel and fiendish to the others who share their mental dwelling places.
The laws of spiritual locomotion or displacement in the mental world of eternity are such that you are always in the place of your desire or love. This contrasts with the physical world where we have to get our body to that place by some method like walking, driving, or being carried by another person, an animal, an airplane, boat, or rocket. But after resuscitation we are fully conscious in our spiritual body. There are no places to go to, only mental constructions directed by our loves and desires. Since there is only one mental world of eternity, all human beings are born into it and remain forever. This world of eternity is far more real than the physical world of time and space. This is a difficult idea to accept and understand.
If we think about this idea from the meanings we have in layer 8C, we will see it as illogical, and hence not acceptable to our comprehension. And if it is unacceptable to our comprehension we cannot love the idea, cannot relate to it, cannot get enthusiastic about it. Right. I understand. Fortunately I have the solution for the problem, a way of overcoming this mental barrier in our cognitive organ. This is where your difficulty is felt, sensed, perceived in yourself. How is it that you’re aware of the difficulty in your layer 8C operations addressed to this idea – the idea that there is only one mental world and everyone is in it?
But now, is you start thinking about it from above layer 8C, things immediately change. If you are looking down mentally on your thinking in 8C, then you must be doing the looking from your thinking in layer 7eC, which is the cognitive operation of the rational mind, external portion. You are doing that very thing (climbing to 7eC), when you notice how you’re thinking in your normal thinking layer, which tends to be layer 8C for most of us most of the time in daily social life and work. So when you notice in yourself that some new idea or principle that you are thinking about does not make sense to you, you are climbing in consciousness from 8C to the observation platform in 7eC. It is the rational mind (layer 7) that controls the operations of the abstract materialist mind (layer 8C).
The control exercised by the natural-rational mind (layer 7e) over the natural-materialistic mind (layer 8C) is by correspondence. This control is completely automatic and part of the mental flow and operation across the layers of the mental world of humanity around the Spiritual Sun in eternity. The Spiritual Sun as Layer 1, constructs and controls all the mental sub-layers from 2 to 10 through the built in laws of correspondence. This law is built in because worlds, layers, and objects are created by spiritual heat and light. These two infinitely varying substances are conjoined in God’s Mind as one. It is called the Divine Marriage in God. Every human being must also have a spiritual marriage in one’s mind, which is the conjunction of our affective (“will”) and cognitive (“understanding”) organs into a joint living synergistic operation that instantiates the sensorimotor world of the environment around us. These are the created dwelling places – physical for the physical body, mental for the spiritual body.
After resuscitation our consciousness is not in the spiritual body. It now displaces itself differently than we are used to in our physical body. Physical closeness in the natural world corresponds to mental similarity in the mental world. Since there is only one mental world you can understand the idea that all human beings can be together who want to, once they are conscious and functioning in their spiritual body after resuscitation. “Geographic place” or physical location corresponds to “mental dwelling place” which actually refers to “mental state.” Since mental states are organic operations in our mental organs, it follows that sharing loves brings people together in the mental world. We don’t need to travel or be carried since our love carries us. Love longs to be united to ideas, and together they love to create neo babies – new feelings, new thoughts, new sensations. When people get together in the mental world of eternity the similarity of their loves bind them together into a permanent community.
I was making up instructions for exercises that my students can do to increase their awareness of the level of consciousness they are thinking at any particular moment in the course of their daily activities. We all oscillate (or vacillate) between layers 9C, 8C and 7eC. For example, think about a routine task you have to do on a regular basis, like running errands for someone to whom you feel obligated. As you are thinking about the schedule for the day, while brushing your teeth or preparing breakfast, you feel flooded by a feeling of resentment: “I hate having to do this.” For a few more seconds, or minutes, your thoughts are compulsively addressed to this topic. It pushes other things out, for awhile. You are in the mode of venting. The Divine Psychologist has connected you with some spiritual society in the Grand Monster who specialize in the ruling love of feeling resentful. They absolutely adore and live for this sentiment, feeling, emotion.
During these few seconds, or minutes, and with some people hours and even days, our consciousness or mentality is situated (captured) in layer 9C. This layer is called concrete materialism, and sometimes sensual-corporeal. The people in the Grand Monster who operate permanently in this mental state feed on such connections between them and us. They are hoping and striving to be able to be connected to people in their natural mind, like we are here every day. Why does the Divine Psychologist connect you to them while you are brushing your teeth or preparing breakfast? The answer is always the same: get used to it. It’s because of your love. All day long, moment by moment, the Divine Psychologist connects and reconnects your mind to societies in the Grand Human and Grand Monster.
I think this may be one of the most difficult concepts to understand in theistic psychology.
It is also the very basis of theistic psychology. The purpose of theistic psychology is to acquire systematic, rational, and practical knowledge about regeneration. The success of this organic lifelong process determines our immortal life in eternity, which begins immediately after death. There is no end to that life. There is no comparison in choice between the value to us of safeguarding our eternal happiness versus safeguarding a tiny fraction of it here on earth. If we do not regenerate we are safeguarding the loves that we now have as unregenerate persons. These are not our loves, really, they are the loves of the people in the Grand Monster to whom you are connected. They become our loves only after resuscitation, when we enter their society, and immediately feel at home in that mental state of resentfulness.
The Divine Psychologist manages the process of regeneration in every little detail. This is necessary since mental states in our natural mind in daily life are always associated to corresponding physical events. These physical events must be arranged so that they happen to you. This requires omnipotence and omniscience, and Divine Love and caring for each human being. So all day long, the Divine Psychologist connects and reconnects each of us to the societies of the Grand Human and Grand Monster, meanwhile, making things happen in our physical and social environment that correspond to our mental states.
As you are venting your resentful thoughts to yourself in layer 9C, you are also conjoining these thoughts to your love of feeling resentful about the obligation you feel and the things it requires of you. This love is in layer 9A. It is a corporeal love joining up with a concrete materialistic thinking in layer 9C. This conjoining together of an unregenerate or hellish love (9A) with distorted reasoning (9C) is called the infernal marriage. It is the counterpart in the Grand Monster of the spiritual marriage of a regenerate or heavenly love (7A) with a rational thinking (7C).
As you are wallowing in the infernal marriage in layer 9, hating it, feeling hellish feelings that torture you like wanting to run away, wanting to tell the person off, wanting to destroy something, wanting to scream as if in agony, etc. These are hellish loves creating hellish feelings. As long as your consciousness is captured in that mental layer, you are going to be in hell with your feelings, with corresponding thoughts, and with the negative sensorimotor behaviors (9S) that the infernal marriage produces – pressing too hard on your toothbrush causing injury to your gums, or burning your toast, or cutting your finger, or banging drawers and doors, or driving off and practicing the emotional use of the gas pedal, etc. These series of little and big disasters go on and on – until your mentality, consciousness, and meaning of what’s happening, is liberated by some regenerated loves of happiness and control.
What is the mechanism by which we can change our mental state and raise our consciousness and mentality?
We change our loves by changing our thoughts.
Remember that -9A loves, like the love of feeling resentful, cannot “materialize” into your actuality or life until you are willing to think the thoughts and perform the reasoning procedures of venting to yourself about the obligations you hate. If you inhibit or suppress these thoughts and justifications, then the love of feeling resentful cannot be consummated. That is when the Divine Psychologist disconnects you from that society, and reconnects you to some other society. Now which one? That again depends on your love, since the Divine Psychologist is obligated to honor your love since that is your spiritual freedom to choose that love, whether it is hellish or heavenly.
As you are still brushing your teeth, or waiting for the microwave oven to deliver your meal, your love of getting out of hell is activated by the Divine Psychologist. Now comes the critical choice you have to make in full spiritual freedom to choose your loves. The love of getting out of hellish mental states (like feeling resentful, angry, and trapped), originates with some society in the Grand Human. It is a heavenly love that’s being offered to you. They don’t know who you are or what you are, and they don’t know your circumstances. They are just absolutely moved by the love of assisting people in getting out of hellish states. This love is used by the Divine Psychologist to make it available to you by connecting your consciousness to them. You cannot feel their love in layer -9A, but you can, in layer 8A and 7A. All you need to do is to cleave to that love being offered to you, namely, the love of getting away from hellish feelings and thoughts.
You are aware of this love “in the back of your mind.” You need to use a deliberate technique to bring that love to the fore of your mind, so that you can actually be in that state of love, which is heavenly and which brings peace, being focused, feeling enthusiasm and happiness for the coming day – the first day of the rest of your immortal life, one day closer to eternal conjugial happiness with your soul mate. These are the thoughts in layer 7C that you can dwell on as you finish brushing your teeth, or when the microwave oven beeps. As you develop these rational and heavenly thoughts about reality and your wonderful future, new loves can become active in your affective organ in layer 7A and 8A. The Divine Psychologist now connects you to societies that are immersed in the loves of scheduling and completing tasks. You feel imbued with new strength and enthusiasm.
As you are locking up the apartment and proceeding to your car or moped, you are back in layer 9, sequencing the sensorimotor activities that will take you to school or work. You are now far away from the place in the Grand Monster that hates the feeling of having these obligations to meet. Gone is the love of feeling resentful. It is replaced with the love of completing your tasks in as efficient way as possible, and still stay within the bounds of your standard of accomplishing things (which is also a heavenly love).
As you are locking up the apartment and proceeding to your car or moped, you are back in layer 9, sequencing the sensorimotor activities that will take you to school or work. You are now far away from the place in the Grand Monster that hates the feeling of having these obligations to meet. Gone is the love of feeling resentful. It is replaced with the love of completing your tasks in as efficient way as possible, and still stay within the bounds of your standard of accomplishing things, all of which involve a bunch of heavenly loves – the love to stay out of trouble, the love to enjoy friends, songs, and movies, the love to strive for success and prepare for a career or project, the love to be rewarded for work done, the love to be recognized and acknowledged for our skills and intentions, etc. etc.
These useful heavenly loves allow us to progress to our ultimate destination, which is to become a mature adult who is committed to regeneration progress on a daily basis.
This is then the personal challenge facing each of us – the challenge of regeneration. And this is assisted by knowledge of how the process of regeneration works. This process is revealed all around the world in every culture when you examine the Sacred Scripture they possess from tradition over the generations. Approach these holy texts with the knowledge of correspondences acquired for your own regeneration. These are the spiritual meanings that are hidden within the literal meaning. No one can extract this spiritual meaning except through the prescribed process, which is the only actually effective mechanism that God provides for human beings to access spiritual truths hidden within the literal meaning of all Sacred Scripture.
Theistic psychology is a phrase used to cover any and all knowledge that people have as a result of applying correspondences from enlightenment by the Divine Psychologist. That is how the spiritual organic process works. The natural organic process of the growth of a plant cannot be altered. All the variations of environmental conditions to which its organic process can adapt and function, will result in the plant surviving. But if some conditions are given outside this limit, the plant dies. This organic process is built into all organs, physical and mental. Our mental organs are constructed out of the substances that are within Sacred Scripture.
This is a difficult and confusing concept to understand from layer 8C, but it is clearly understandable in layer 7eC. Remember that our mental organs are constructed out of the mental substances of spiritual heat and spiritual light. These are mental substances, Divine substances, living, infinite, and eternal. Spiritual heat is nothing else than Divine Love and spiritual light is nothing else than Divine Truth. The problem of comprehension is resolved as soon as you allow in your mind the entrance of a layer 7iC idea. This is an interior-natural concept, not a external-natural concept. It is the idea that physical=temporary appearances representing reality, and mental=permanent eternal reality in our mind, which is the mental world of eternity, of which there is only one, for all people.
Once you allow that idea as “possibly real” (which is called the positive bias in science), you are departing from and removing the existing negative bias in science, which says that this idea is “outside the realm of logic, rationality, empiricism, and science.” The negative bias thinking about the Divine Psychologist, the Grand Monster, etc., is that it is just some idea by some author whose research and conclusions do not qualify as materialistic science. The thinking level of materialistic science is layer 8C and layer 9S. In other words, the data and measurements obtained at layer 9S, provide the sensory input and data recording instruments. Then, our ability to construct mental abstractions (layer 8C) of the empirical data provide us with scientific explanations, principles, and theories.
Note that the abstractions and scientific explanations in layer 8C are above or within layer 9C, which involves constructing concepts and explanations based only on the appearances of reality which we see in data. Clearly, the rational and scientific explanations must be at a level higher in thinking and consciousness than the level of the data which are appearances of the senses and the physical instruments. Scientific explanation is at level 8C, which is why that mental layer is called “abstract materialism,” while the layer below is called “concrete materialism.” Data and measurements are concrete, while explanations are abstractions of the concrete. Abstractions of data are much closer to actuality and truth than the appearances of those data, which hide or cover up the actual reality or truth.
The concrete materialistic thinking of our anatomical layer 9C is related to the concrete materialistic thinking of the literal sense of the Old Testament Sacred Scripture. The abstract materialistic thinking of our anatomical layer 8C is related to the abstract materialistic thinking of the literal sense of the New Testament Sacred Scripture. The external-rational thinking of our anatomical layer 7eC is related to the external-rational thinking of the literal sense of the Writings Sacred Scripture (or “Swedenborg Reports”). These three sets of sacred text are unlike any other discourse produced by human beings on their own. The discourse and text produced by human beings only has a literal sense that can be abstracted and symbolized in many ways. But this text does not contain a spiritual sense corresponding to the layers above our natural mind and the Spiritual Sun. Some text comes from Divine Speech to produce Sacred Scripture, while all other text is constructed at whatever level the person is thinking, the consciousness level of the person, which is in the natural mind.
You can test out this principle by learning correspondences and applying them to various types of discourse and text. The results will show that only Sacred Scripture text contains the layers of the mental world of eternity in discrete correspondences to each other, from layer 1 to layer 9.
Consider the external-rational concepts you are studying in theistic psychology, like regeneration, the Grand Monster, the Grand Human, layers of mental organs, eternity, spiritual substances, etc. Consider them within the positive bias. That is, allow yourself the benefit of saying “possibly true” and reject the idea that will rob you from that benefit, which says “not possibly true, clever fantasy, not science.” It is your choice. To me it makes sense to teach the positive bias framework. I can understand it rationally as a scientist who respects consistency, organicity, rationality, usefulness, empirical confirmations, power to generate new explanations that lead to better understanding, etc. etc. These are the reasons why I think that it is worthwhile for me to teach the positive bias in science.
One of the exercises that I found useful involves the activity of spiritual garfinkeling. I constructed this sensorimotor neo by considering the exercise in Garfinkel’s 1967 book. He gave his students the exercise of going home and acting like they are guests. This would allow them to observe two useful things. First, other people’s reactions. Second, what is normal and ordinary is an arrangement or order managed by the participants who coordinate their actions to each other. When the students acted like a guest would act, they broke up this coordinated arrangement, and the ordinary was no longer in force. The social world of the participants was turned upside down.“May I use the bathroom?”
You can see that the normal ordinary exchanges were disrupted by such questions and stances.
The exercise I am recommending uses a similar approach in a spiritual area, so I call it spiritual garfinkeling. I’m not sure if I should use a capital “G” or if Professor Garfinkel’s followers today would see my point for extending to theistic psychology what Harold Garfinkel did in non-theistic ethnomethodology. I see the neo I constructed as honoring the scientific value of his instructional assignment.
Spiritual garfinkeling consists of carrying out a regular activity while acting as if you are operating from layer 7, when actually you might be in layer 8 or 9. To act as if one’s consciousness is in a higher layer than it is – that’s the process that can help us raise our actual consciousness level to that higher layer. In this higher layer we have access to mental states that are sourced in the Grand Human (layers 6, 5, 4). This higher way of thinking (layer 7C) is rational rather than materialistic (layer 8C). For instance, when you analyze your feeling of hating your obligations, you can do it from layer 9C thinking (“I just hate it. I don’t want to do it. I resent having to.”). Or, you can do it from layer 8C thinking (“I can’t just walk away from the situation. I want to honor my obligations in this case. I am being a good person.”). Or, you can do it from your layer 7eC thinking (“Everything I do fits into a Divine plan for my future. It would be folly for me to ignore this central fact about it. Striving to be good will bring me the motivation, freedom, and happiness I crave for.”)
Once you begin to elaborate a higher form of thinking, you create the thoughts that your higher loves need in order to become actual in you, and to give you the mental states that you want for yourself. If you are in layer -9A facing concrete appearances (9S) that make you unhappy (-9A), the way out of the situation is to raise your level of thinking to 8C by the abstracted materialism to which we have access in that layer. We can construct abstracted explanations of our situation. Our situation appears bad (“I hate having to do this.”) (layer -9C). Our negative emotions (marked by the – sign), are supported by false thinking (“It’s not fair.”). The two form an infernal alliance to produce our disturbing environment (-9S) (feeling trapped, braking things, taking it out on innocent others, being in a bad mood, putting on a sad or mean face, etc.).
An effective method to gain control over the situation is to move right on up to layer 7eC thinking. You can do this if you are a student of theistic psychology, or, if you study Sacred Scripture and understand it in its deeper spiritual meanings. Layer 7eC thinking consists of paraphrases and applications of your knowledge and understanding of theistic psychology, or equivalent. It works most effectively when you are willing to think in the interior-rational layer (7iC), obtaining your information from the correspondential or spiritual meanings within Sacred Scripture. We need to be aware that when Sacred Scripture is applied in the literal sense, our thinking is restricted to the level at which the holy text is written.
Sacred Scripture text that is written for concrete materialistic thinking (9C), allows you to hate some people and to ignore their human rights. Sacred Scripture text that is written for abstract materialistic thinking (8C), does not allow you to hate some people and to ignore their human rights. You are commanded to love all people and to benefit them, not hurt them. Sacred Scripture text that is written for natural-rational thinking (7C), also does not allow you to hate some people and to ignore their human rights, but in addition, shows you what is actually going on with you when you hate some people versus when you love the good in all people.
At level 7iC thinking you are adding a critical missing component that is not present in 7eC thinking. This is the process of undergoing regeneration. Once you begin this process you are given access to 7iA loves and motives. Interior-natural loves are sourced in your higher layers (6, 5, 4). These loves are spiritual and celestial, while the loves in 7eA, 8A, and 9A are natural loves, possessing negative natural powers and weaknesses. Loves that are available in layer 7eA can conjoin only with 7eC thoughts (external loves with external thoughts). These are based on the materialism of the natural world, either concrete (layer 9) or abstracted (layer 8). There is a direct dependency between the content of 9C, 8C, and 7eC. To move the content to spiritual and celestial layers (6, 5, 4) it is necessary to operate in layer 7i, the interior-natural layer.
You move on from layer 7e to layer 7i when you activate the love of regenerating (7iA). This is called reformation. You change your world around by moving everything in it under the rule and command of your love of regenerating. You can elevate this love above all other loves you have, above the loves of what is concrete (9A), above the loves of what is abstract (8A), and above the loves of knowing and understanding rational truths (7eA). You enthrone a new love in the interior portion of your natural-rational mind, within the love that is in the external portion of your rational mind (7eA). This highest love in the natural mind is the love of regenerating. When you cleave to this love, holding on to it as dear life, you are given access by the Divine Psychologist to your spiritual and celestial layers.
When you practice spiritual garfinkeling you are acting as if you are in layer 7e or 7i, depending on your actual loves. For instance, when you are immersed in the negative feelings and thoughts of hating your obligation and lack of freedom, as discussed above, you can start acting as if you moved out of layer 9A, out of layer 8A, and into layer 7A. All you need to do is to figure out rationally within your understanding of the positive bias, how your regeneration motive applies to this one instance of feeling disturbed by your obligation, feeling rebellious, feeling enslaved. For example:
“What is my main task here. What am I trying to accomplish. Where am I trying to go. I want to be free of these negative feelings. I want to be free, really free. I cannot feel free on my natural loves. I need to access my spiritual and celestial loves. Sacred Scripture tells me that “with God all things are possible.” This means that the Divine Psychologist can give me new loves that will overcome the feelings of dissatisfaction and loss of emotional control. These new loves are spiritual and celestial, from my eternity, from my own heaven. I am moving towards that state. I must let the Divine Psychologist bring me these temptations of hating and rebelling against what I picked for myself as the right thing to do. I accepted this obligation out of a feeling of loyalty and caring. These are heavenly loves and I’m going to reject the hellish loves of trying to escape my obligation, then regretting it later, feeling the pain of guilt and self-hatred.” Etc.
You can see from the above discussion what is involved in spiritual garfinkeling. It’s like a mental bootstrap operation, lifting yourself out of the states you are in. Knowing about the details of regeneration and the work of the Divine Psychologist in your mind, allows you to access new loves, new powers, new satisfactions, new self-confidence, new skills and abilities.
The availability to us of this progressive level of abilities, is the result of the organic anatomy of our mental operations. As you know from prior discussions, we have the built in anatomical ability to operate our three mental organ systems at three levels of operation – layer 9, 8, and 7 (7e and 7i). These three levels of mental operations are in sequential discrete degrees, as discussed. This means that the highest possible progress in one level cannot reach the lowest operations of the next level. You also know that our consciousness or mentality level oscillates between these three, although as you can expect, the rate of oscillation will vary with the extent of our regeneration.
The process of regeneration starts in layer 7, when we abandon our thinking loyalty in layer 7eC to layer 8 and 9. Instead, we adopt a new loyalty in layer 7iC, which is filled with spiritual content from the correspondential sense of Sacred Scripture. From this interior-natural layer, we can raise our consciousness to the highest levels by extracting higher correspondences from Sacred Scripture. The regeneration of our layer 7 turns our natural-rational mind from a little hell into a little heaven. This transformation is achieved through the influx of correspondences from layer 6 into layer 7i. The result is that layer 6 is made fully functional. This insures that we will be able to live in first heaven after resuscitation.
Following the regeneration of our natural-rational mind (layer 7), the really hard work then begins – the regeneration of the external-natural mind, layer 8. Our rational mind can be a little heaven while our materialistic mind can still be a little hell. Our regenerated rational mind (layer 7) cannot impose a new heavenly order on the materialistic mind below (layer 8). Our feelings and thoughts in layer 8 prior to its regeneration, are abstractions of mere appearances (layer 9). The abstractions from the physical cannot get rid of the physical. Every scientific theory and concept in the negative bias approach, will exclude the non-physical, the non-temporal or eternal, and the spiritual or mental. These are excluded. But if this turns out to be the real reality, then science in the negative bias excludes the true reality. This is then the reason why our layer 8 is called a little hell – because our thoughts about reality are inverted. The result is that what is true, we call false; and what is false, we call true. This is the meaning of “hellish order” or “little hell.”
The rational mind (layer 7) has to be regenerated first because layer 8 and layer 9 resist all efforts at regeneration. However, things are different once layer 7 is regenerated. When we read the Swedenborg Reports, or study genuine theistic psychology based on it, we can make the effort of studying every paragraph until we can understand it. As we build paragraphs that we can understand, our rational mind is formed by the Divine Psychologist, regardless of our awareness, and regardless of our ideas about God and the afterlife. This paragraph by paragraph cumulation of rational ideas and explanations results in the gradual regeneration of the rational mind (layer 7). It is accompanied by much activity in the affective organ. Our rational loves (layer 7A) seize upon our new rational ideas (7C) and they reciprocally conjoin into one – the spiritual marriage in layer 7.
Now we look down upon our feelings and thoughts in layer 8C below, and what do we see?
We see a little hell. We see negative loves and false principles and attitudes. We see habits that we cannot condone. We see enjoyments that are selfish and cruel. We see thinking that is often stupid, reasoning that doesn’t conform to rationality. We see a life of weakness and neglect, addiction and powerlessness, a disorder of the mind that translates into a disorder of society. This is the unregenerate layer 8. But we also see some brilliance there, feats of engineering and medical achievements, large institutions and huge armies operating in an orderly and efficient manner. Layer 8 is not only a little hell, it is also a little heaven. But the heavenly order and abilities cannot remain because the hellish order destroys them. Regeneration of layer 8 must take place before the heavenly portion in it is destroyed. This is accomplished through the influx of our layer 5. When layer 8 is regenerated, our layer 5 is fully opened and functional. After resuscitation we will be able to exist in the second heaven.
After layer 8 is regenerated, layer 9 can be regenerated. This is achieved through the influx of layer 4. When layer 9 is regenerated, layer 4 is fully open and functional. After resuscitation we will be able to exist in the third and highest heaven.
Reasonings under the three levels of human consciousness:
Layer 7:Positive bias rationality: Reasoning based on rational-spiritual correspondences
Layer 8:Negative bias materialism: Reasoning based on abstractions from sensory appearances
Layer 9:Concrete materialism: Reasoning based on sensory or corporeal appearances
When we are beginning our process of regenerating we are motivated by a rational love in layer 7A. Loves are named according to the organic layer of our mind at which they operate:
Organic layer 9A supports corporeal loves, attached to the appearances of the sensorimotor world around it (9S). Corporeal loves (9A) encourage concrete materialistic thinking (9C), and together they produce the sensorimotor appearances of our meanings and consciousness in the corporeal mind (layer 9).
Organic layer 8A supports sensuous loves that encourage abstract materialistic thinking (8C), and together they produce the sensorimotor appearances of our meanings and consciousness in the sensuous materialistic mind (layer 8S). The difference in consciousness between layer 8 and 9 is of a discrete degree. No matter how advanced we get in layer 9, we can never reach layer 8 by using corporeal consciousness and meanings. In layer 9 the meanings reflect the appearances. For example, you are driving and another car has been following closer than you think that one car should follow another. You are conscious that you are feeling annoyed. All of a sudden things around your corporeal mind (9S) are no longer OK. You are not conscious of the hellish love (-9A) that gives you the feeling of annoyance (-9A). Your corporeal cognitive operations (9C) fall in line to support this love. But you don’t know what this love is, or even that it is operating in your affective organ, triggering the thoughts.
You are thinking that the driver behind you is annoyed with you and wants you to speed up. This conclusion is entirely based on the appearances in your rear view mirror. That’s all you are going by to make this conclusion.
What is this love? It is the love of self for the sake of self as it operates at the corporeal level of appearances (layer -9A). The car behind you is invading your territory. There is pressure and threat to such behavior from one motorist to another. You resent that. They should respect you by being more considerate. You hate people who…Wait! Quick! Start doing some spiritual garfinkeling. You’re thinking: “OK, I need to calm down. I’m just going to act like it’s the other’s driver’s inattention. It’s not a personal message to me that he is annoyed with me and is pressuring me to go faster. Not necessarily so! Maybe he is distracted. Maybe he has the habit of following too close. Maybe he is busy multitasking and isn’t even aware of me.”
This new thinking is in your layer 8C. Your consciousness, rationality, and meanings have jumper from the corporeal level of appearances (9C), to a more realistic interpretations of the situation based on emotional intelligence (layer 8C). This is the skill of knowing how to use spiritual garfinkeling procedures to allow your consciousness to escape from the reasoning that is based on appearances (“He is annoyed at me”) in layer 9C, to the reasoning based on an abstract interpretation of these appearances (“Not necessarily so!”) in layer 8C.
There is a discrete difference in the two loves that support these two layers. Corporeal loves are for the most part unregenerate (9-A). The love of self for the sake of self and the love of the world for the sake of self are the two ruling loves in layer 9-A before regeneration. So until the regeneration process reaches layer 9 we need to use spiritual garfinkeling to escape that inherited love in our natural mind. We suddenly just start acting as if we are operating in layer 8. We don’t try to reason our way out of it. We just jump. Our consciousness just takes off to a higher zone of existence. When we act this way, the Divine Psychologist is right there to support us. He provides the power and the effectiveness for whatever is supposed to happen in that situation. Our job is simply to act as if we are doing it ourselves, as if we are jumping from a corporeal love (9-A) to a sensuous love (8+A).
The laws of operation for consciousness in the mental world of eternity allow us to “look down” from one mental layer to that immediately below. When we are thinking with meanings that operate in layer 8C, we can use these meanings to show us what is happening in the meanings that is just external or below. Remember that in the mental world, what is “below” is the same as what is “external.” The three sequential mental layers of the natural mind – 9, 8, 7 – are together in simultaneous order, so that layer 7 is within (or above) layer 8, which is within (or above) layer 9. Think of three concentric circles with 7 at the center, 8 in the middle, and 9 on the outside. This is the organic arrangement of our natural mind, the mind in which we are conscious prior to resuscitation. Similarly, the spiritual mind in which we are conscious after resuscitation, has three sequential and simultaneous layers – 6, 5, 4.
Our conscious awareness is created by the meanings we are using in our thinking. These meanings are nothing else than the operations of the cognitive organ. Hence our consciousness level at any one moment in our daily activities is determined by which of the three cognitive organs it is attached to by a love. Loves in the natural mind exist at three levels, since loves are nothing but the operations of our affective organ. Our natural mind contains an affective organ at three anatomical layers – 9A, 8A, 7A. The 9A loves in the affective organ will generate 9C meanings in the cognitive organ. Similarly, 8A loves will generate 8C meanings, while 7A loves will generate 7C meanings. Consequently, such as our love is, such are our meanings, and such is our consciousness.
In our daily life, the level of human consciousness in our sensorimotor organ (S) is determined by the marriage between our affective loves (A) with our cognitive thoughts (C). This is the spiritual marriage (S) between our will (A) and our understanding (C).
You can see from this mental anatomy and physiology that our daily life consciousness operates at three levels:
7S: rational consciousness from correspondences
8S: materialistic consciousness from abstracted appearances
9S: corporeal consciousness of concrete appearances
In infancy: corporeal consciousness (9S)
In childhood materialistic consciousness (8S)
In adolescence: rational consciousness (7S)
As young adults: rational consciousness (7S)
As mature adults: materialistic consciousness (8S)
In old age: corporeal consciousness (9S)
Remember that S (sensorimotor system of the mind) is the spiritual child or offspring – neo baby – of the spiritual marriage between the affective organ (A) and the cognitive organ (C). This is a feature of mental physiology in the organic layers of the mental world of eternity. What you see around you, outside of you, and coming into you through your senses (S), are the actual appearances (S) created instantaneously by the spiritual marriage in your own mind between your loves (A) and your thoughts (C).
We can influence where are consciousness is moment by moment, by deliberately thinking about thoughts and meanings that are attractive to a higher love within us. This is the spiritual garfinkeling technique.
For instance, you are brushing your teeth and thinking that you need to floss next. You are experiencing a feeling of distaste, reluctance, sadness. You are aware of your thinking: “I hate flossing. I think I’ll just skip today. Nobody is perfect. I’ve got more important things to take care of.” What level of consciousness is this cognitive operation going on? It’s level 9C. It’s a corporeal consciousness rooted in infancy, and as well in old age, when it is unregenerate. Having identified the level of thinking, you can conclude that the love in this marriage is in the affective organ layer 9A. Now you can consult a mental dictionary of loves that you need to acquire by study, observation, and systematic reflection.
It is useful to study and memorize taxonomies and diagrams in theistic psychology. Each taxonomy, matrix, and diagram constitutes what the Swedenborg Reports call “vessels” and “scientifics” in Sacred Scripture. These are cognitions, concepts, ideas, principles, relationships, rational accounts and explanations. We need to commit them to memory so that we can access them when they become relevant to an event, situation, or observation. We prepare ourselves for spiritual combat by “packing” these spiritual weapons in our long term memory, where we can access them when we face a spiritual temptation.
The Divine Psychologist needs for us to be ready to face combat when He brings an event to us (which takes omnipotence), while at the same time He sets our focus and our memory to deliver to our consciousness, the “vessel” or concept of truth that we have previously acquired. Now with this information or idea in our conscious focus, we face the temptation, and we fight emotionally as of self, knowing rationally that it is the Divine Psychologist who is actually managing the details and the outcome.
But if we are not prepared with concepts and understandings in our memory, we cannot face spiritual combat, and win. And in that case, the Divine Psychologist postpones the contest for another time in the future. And if we do not prepare at all, because we are not regenerating and don’t believe in regeneration, then there will be no spiritual temptations brought to us. We will then enter resuscitation without being regenerated. Our spiritual mind (layers 6, 5, 4) cannot be operationalized. Our consciousness must remain living in an unregenerate natural mind (-9, -8, -7), and this constitutes “spiritual insanity” or the Grand Monster.
When we face spiritual combat we are experiencing it as temptation. This is the conflict between opposing loves. For instance, you’re walking on the beach, keeping up a steady pace for your daily workout. Your eye catches a sharp piece of glass sticking out of the packed sand. You’re thinking: “Could give someone a nasty cut on the foot!” This is the event that the Divine Psychologist has brought to you, including managing your eye movements to locate the sharp glass. Now the combat is set up in the resuscitation zone of the mental world of eternity where your spiritual body is lying, quietly, not moving, as if asleep. A delegation of thrill seekers from a society in the Grand Monster arrives simultaneously with a delegation of volunteers from a society in the Grand Human. Every one on both sides was summoned by the Divine Psychologist. They were spending a normal day in their society when they received the Divine summons. They responded with opposing loves.
The people from the Grand Monster society responded from an infernal love to the chance of being able to suffocate compassion in some natural mind. That’s all they know. They have no identity or idea of who this person is, or even that this is a person on earth. They just sense that they have been given an opportunity to exercise their infernal love. They can see it too, since they are brought into a visual presence of your spiritual body, lying there, waiting for the resuscitation process to begin -- which may not happen for decades, depending on how long you are to live on earth. But in the meantime, while your spiritual body is in this semi-conscious state, it affords your natural mind to undergo the physiology of temptations.
As the Grand Monster people are brought near your spiritual body, on its left side, the Grand Human volunteers are also brought near, on the right side. They face each other. Your natural mind, which is also housed in the spiritual body (along with your spiritual mind), is now spiritually “flooded” and “immersed” in the hellish loves with their “falsities” or un-neos. Neos fight un-neos, and the what is at stake, is your life in heaven or hell in eternity. Nothing can be more important to you than this battle, and all the others like it, that you will have to go through. There is no other way of raising your consciousness level in eternity to your heavenly happiness (layers 6, 5, 4).
The reason there is no other way is that love sticks. When you attach yourself to a love, it will stick to you. Your mind cannot get rid of it – voluntarily. The Divine Psychologist cannot cut it out for you, which would be like cutting off the wick of a burning candle. The flame cannot live without the wick. You cannot live without your love. You are your love. Cut out the love, and you are gone. What then is the Divine Psychologist going to do when you inherit evil loves and you make them your own loves when you are an infant, a child, an adolescent, a young adult, a mature adult? The Divine Psychologist provided a way during the Incarnation Event. By forming a new mental layer in His mind as God-Man in the physical world, He achieved a new creation in the universe. He formed a new layer in the mental world of eternity that did not exist until then. He divided layer 7 into an external (7e) and interior (7i) portion. The external portion was already there and remained the same (layer 7e). Inside this external portion He formed a new interior portion called the interior-natural mind (layer 7i).
We now have the new ability of being conscious of the presence of the Divine Psychologist in our mind.
This new ability may be called the regeneration ability. Layer 7iC thinking is a discrete degree higher than layer 7eC thinking. We may read the Swedenborg Reports for instance, and understand it rationally by figuring out the literal sense, which is written in natural-rational correspondences of Divine Speech. This forms our layer 7eC with concepts and ideas from the Swedenborg Reports. Your own study of theistic psychology concepts is also done at this external-rational level of thinking about God and eternity (layer 7eC). This knowledge prepares you for spiritual combat. Loves from hell and loves from heaven now surround you, flood you with temptations. You consider picking up the dangerous glass. The temptation begins.
You slow down your pace, you hesitate. You turn your head and look at the glass again. Now the Grand Monster people are allowed by the Divine Psychologist to come closer to your spiritual body. You become aware you are feeling resentful, angry. This hellish love constructs a bunch of thoughts in your cognitive organ, thoughts that support the love of resentment and anger against people. Now the delegation of the Grand Human are allowed to come closer. Suddenly you feel compassion for the beach runner who is going to get cut up by the sharp glass. You can prevent that by being civilized and caring. You feel the love of community and patriotism and thoughts are formed to support this noble sentiment.
What happens next depends on what love you decide to hold on to – the love of being compassionate and civilized vs. the love of resentment and anger. All sorts of assisting loves may come into play here. More delegates from the heavenly and hellish societies are summoned by the Divine Psychologist. In a few seconds there may be dozens or hundreds of people involved on both sides of your spiritual body. What a tremendous drama. Talk about entertainment fiction. This is real, more involving than fiction. You swivel, turn around, and walk back. You decide to pick up the glass.
But the hellish hoards who are summoned to your side, have not given up the battle. Not by a long shot. They wiggle themselves into your love of performing your workout routine in an effective manner. You’ve trained yourself not to slow down in your fast pace. It’s the aerobic benefit you need. This love is an intermediate love, neither clearly heavenly, nor clearly hellish. We have many intermediate loves that serve as a transitional function. We love to exercise our body for various sub-loves, some of which are not heavenly. For instance, it flatters our vanity, and if relevant others don’t notice your healthy looks, you feel disappointment, and lose some of the motivation for keeping your workout up. The love of pushing yourself as far as possible in workout routines, leads to many injuries for millions of people every year. I see people running on the beach who have their knees bandaged. This can’t be good for them. I see overweight people who run, and this can’t be good (one of them told me she keeps injuring her knees because she is too heavy).
Before you reach the broken piece of glass in the packed sand, you swivel again and start your fast pace away from the tempting object. “I’m not getting involved. Let someone else pick it up. I’m keeping up my pace. That’s what I am here for.” But now a delegation of the Grand Human draws nearer to your spiritual body. They call out a love you have that is from their society, which you have had for years. You did not know this, and they did not know this. But now, as they are brought near you, that love of theirs is aroused in you again. It is the love of feeling clean and wholesome when you do the right thing. The thoughts tumble in your consciousness: “I can’t just leave it there and pretend I didn’t see it. I’ll just do it quickly and it won’t affect my pace too much.” You swivel once more, and this time you make to the glass, and pick it up, hardly losing a beat, as you continue your fast walk.
You know feel the relief of victory in spiritual combat. The Grand Monster delegation withdraws in fear and disgust. The Grand Human delegation now surrounds your spiritual body on all sides. Wonderful warm heavenly sensations surround you. You are basking in the glow of the aftermath of a spiritual temptation in victory. The people nearby who watched you swivel twice, then pick up something, have no idea of the momentous battle that just took place in four seconds. The Divine Psychologist is especially near and watchful during all our temptations. It is our lifeline to eternal happiness or unhappiness. Much is at stake.
Now reread this entire Section, and prepare yourself for your next combat! See how many loves you can add to the list where it says "etc."
Observe what happens when you talk to your friends about theistic psychology. You are presenting concepts from layer 7C. Quite probably, your friends will be in layer 8C or 9C as they listen to you. If in layer 9C, they might be annoyed, and might start ridiculing what you say or making fun with it, possibly tease you about it. If they are in layer 8C, they will ask you questions. They will try to prove how silly the ideas are. But if they are in layer 7C, you will experience a conversation about it in layer 7, which could be a surprising and pleasing exchange.
Now ask yourself why 7C thinking arouses the ire and ridicule of 8C and 9C thinking. The answer is that the loves of the rational mind (7A) that produce the ideas of the rational mind (7C) are opposed to the loves of the materialistic mind (9A, 8A) that produce the materialistic ideas (9C, 8C) that ridicule rational ideas (7C). Loves across the mental layers are discretely different and cannot be reconciled to each other (until regeneration takes place).
So there is a built in opposition to consciousness-raising in the natural mind. The Swedenborg Reports state that when a lower layer “looks up” to see what there is at a higher layer from itself, it sees “nothing but darkness.” Consider your own initial reactions to reading theistic psychology concepts and principles such as “mental world of eternity,” or “anatomical layer 8C,” or “extracting the correspondential sense of Sacred Scripture,” or “the Grand Human and the Grand Monster,” or “the Divine Psychologist,” etc., you were reading and considering the meanings of these new concepts, with your usual layer 8C thinking that you use in getting through other “technical” books or courses. You were trying to make sense of a statement like, “Love is spiritual heat substance, and truth is spiritual light substance, both streaming from the Spiritual Sun into the mental world of eternity and immersing our mind in it.”
What meaning did such a statement have when you first heard it and tried to make sense of it?
When we are thinking with layer 8C meanings we are immersed in materialistic ideas originating and rooted in sensory input from the physical body and the natural world of time-space. So when you are constructing some meaning to “truth” as being “spiritual light substance” you are thinking of “spiritual substance” like you are thinking of “physical matter.” And you confirm this notion in your mind by considering that our eyes can see when they are immersed in physical light from the natural sun, or else, some artificial light like electricity, which is also physical light from the sun.
This 8C thinking equates the meaning of the expression (a) “physical light as being physical matter or energy from the natural sun,” with the meaning of the expression (b) “spiritual light as being spiritual substance from the Spiritual Sun.” To equate the meaning of (a) with the meaning of (b) is 8C level thinking. This equalizing of the two meanings form different discrete levels, is called “reductionism in science.” All 7C concepts from the rational mind will be reduced to 8C concepts form the materialistic mind. The result is that layer 7C is totally dark or non-existent to layer 8C. Nothing form our rational mind (layer 7) can exist in our materialistic mental layers (8 and 9).
The only solution to this situation is to accept the new idea that we can think at different layers of the mind.
These different layers are actually “discrete degrees” which means that no matter how high you get in your 8C thinking, you can never attain the lowest level of 7C thinking. You can confirm this principle in yourself when you monitor and analyze your thinking in layer 9C (concrete corporeal mind) vs. your thinking in layer 8C (abstract materialistic mind). This you can do because you alternate between these discrete ways of thinking in the course of your daily activities and situations. For instance, when you have the impulse and love to tell somebody off, you are engaged in venting your anger in your mind, thinking in layer 9C (e.g., “I wish I could make them suffer like I am now. I should burn this place down to show them, etc.”). But instead of proceeding with the awful action (9S), your consciousness jumps to layer 8C due to a bunch of 8A loves that motivate you to exercise self-preservation by looking to the consequences of your actions.
This 8A love of self-preservation and self-protection constructs new thoughts, new meanings in your consciousness regarding the situation and what’s going on: “No, I can’t do that. Don’t want to go to jail. I’ll find another way to get even. This place sucks!” etc. You can see that two discrete sets of different loves and thoughts are involved as your consciousness of the meaning of the situation flip flops between layers 9 and 8. The concrete materialism of the corporeal mind (layer 9) is based on the direct sensory input of the physical body and situation. We rely on the abstract power of layer 8C thinking to get us out of mere physical appearances. We can’t just act on what it looks like. We must figure out what’s actually going on. We are more intelligent in abstract thinking about appearances (layer 8C) than in thinking that is based directly on the senses (layer 9C).
So now with theistic psychology concepts, you are trying to understand them by constructing new types of meanings that are based in a rational universe, not physical universe. To raise our thinking level from the materialistic (8C) to the rational (layer 7C) we have to create a new world in our idea of the universe. We have to accept the positive bias in science and think: “It is possible that there are two worlds, one physical in time, the other mental in eternity.” The positive bias in science says: “This is a possibility” while the negative bias in science says “This is not a possibility.” If you adopt the negative bias in science you are keeping your thinking in layer 8C and 9C. If you adopt the positive bias in science you are changing your thinking level to 7C. One thinking level is appropriate for the physical world, and the other is appropriate for the rational world.
Now if you can extirpate yourself from the negative bias in science, during the time that you are studying theistic psychology concepts, then it is possible for you to attach meanings to rational ideas that are based in the mental world of eternity. You will be able to avoid reductionism, which takes away your ability to understand the reality of the mental world in eternity.
If you allow the possibility of two worlds, you empower yourself with the ability to understand theistic psychology and how it is a knowledge that you can apply in critical areas of your daily life that need greater effectiveness and control. Knowledge provides power to adapt, control, and modify. Assuming that our mind is real, and exists in its own real world, what are the consequences to me and my future? This is the beginning of level 7C thinking.
 Conjunction with the Lord by means of good has indeed been already frequently treated of in speaking of the regeneration of man, but as the man of the church at this day studies much the truths which are of faith, and but little the good which is of love, and for this reason is in ignorance about good, something further may here be said about the conjunction of good and truth which is called the heavenly marriage. Man is born into evils of every kind, and consequently into falsities of every kind, thus of himself he is condemned to hell. In order therefore that he may be rescued from hell, he must needs be born again of the Lord. This being born again is what is called regeneration. In order therefore that he may be born again, he must first learn truths, and if he is of the church he must learn them from the Word, or from doctrine derived from the Word. The Word and doctrine from the Word teach what is true and good, and truth and good teach what is false and evil. Unless man knows these, he cannot possibly be regenerated, for he remains in his evils and their falsities, calling the former goods, and the latter truths.
DP 279. III. SO FAR AS EVILS ARE REMOVED THEY ARE REMITTED. It is an error of the present age to believe
1. That evils are separated from man and indeed cast out when they are remitted; and
2. That the state of man's life can be changed in a moment, even to its opposite, so that from being wicked he can become good, and consequently can be brought out of hell and straightway transferred to heaven, and this by the immediate mercy of the Lord.
3. Those, however, who entertain this belief and opinion do not in the least know what evil is and what good is; and they know nothing whatever of the state of man's life.
4. Moreover, they are totally unaware that affections, which belong to the will, are nothing but changes and variations in state of the purely organic substances of the mind; and that thoughts, which belong to the understanding, are nothing but changes and variations in the form of these substances; and that memory is a permanent state of these changes.
From a knowledge of these things it may be clearly seen that no evil can be removed except by successive stages, and that the remission of evil is not its removal. These things are stated here in a summarised form; and unless they are demonstrated they may indeed by recognised but they cannot be comprehended; and what is not comprehended is vaguely defined like a wheel which is kept spinning round by the hand. Therefore, the propositions just stated must now be demonstrated one by one in the order in which they are set forth.
 First: It is an error of the present age to believe that evils are separated and indeed cast out when they are remitted. It has been granted me to know from heaven that no evil into which man is born and to which he has actually habituated himself is separated from him, but is only so far removed that it does not appear. Before that, I held the belief entertained by most people in the world, that when evils are remitted they are cast out, and are washed and wiped away as dirt from the face by water. This, however, is not the case with evils or sins. They all remain, and when after repentance they are remitted, they are moved from the centre to the outskirts; and then what is in the centre, because it is directly under view, appears as in the light of day, and what is at the outskirts is in the shade, and sometimes as it were in the darkness of night. As evils are not separated but only removed, that is, relegated to the outskirts, and as a man may pass from the centre to the parts round about, it may also happen that he can return to his evils which he supposed had been cast out. For man is of such a nature that he can pass from one affection into another, and sometimes into an opposite one, and thus from one centre to another, that affection in which he is for the time being constituting the centre, for he is then in its joy and in its light.
 There are some who after death are raised up by the Lord into heaven because they have lived well, but who yet have carried with them the belief that they are clean and pure from sins and therefore are not in a state of guilt. These are at first clothed in white garments in accordance with their belief; for white garments signify a state purified from evils. Later, however, they begin to think as they did in the world that they are as it were washed from all evil, and so to boast that they are no longer sinners like other men. Now this can hardly be separated from a certain elation of mind (animus) and a measure of contempt for others compared with themselves. Therefore, in order that they may be removed from their ill-founded belief they are sent down from heaven and permitted to enter upon the evils which they practised in the world; and at the same time they are shown that they are in hereditary evils, of which they were ignorant before. When they have thus been induced to recognise that their evils have not been separated from them but only removed, and consequently that of themselves they are impure, and indeed that they are nothing but evil, and that they are withheld from evil and kept in good by the Lord, and that this only appears to them as of themselves, they are again raised up by the Lord into heaven.
 Second: It is an error of the present age to believe that the state of man's life can be changed in a moment, so that from being wicked he can become good, and consequently can be brought out of hell and straightway transferred to heaven, and this by the immediate mercy of the Lord. Those are in this error who separate charity and faith, and place salvation in faith alone; for they suppose that merely thinking and uttering the words which state their faith, if it is done with assurance and confidence, is what justifies and saves. Moreover, many suppose that this is effected instantaneously, and, if not before, about the last hour of a man's life. These cannot but believe that the state of a man's life can be changed in a moment, and that he can be saved by the exercise of immediate or direct mercy. That the mercy of the Lord, however, is not immediate, and that a man cannot from being wicked become good in a moment, and can only be brought out of hell and transferred to heaven by the continual operation of the Divine Providence from infancy right on to the end of his life, will be seen in the last chapter of this treatise. At this point this only need be observed, that all the laws of the Divine Providence have for their end the reformation and thus the salvation of man; and consequently the reversal of his state, which by birth is infernal, to the opposite state, which is heavenly. This can only be effected step by step as man, withdrawing from evil and its delight, enters into good and its delight.
 Third: Those who entertain this belief do not in the least know what evil is and what good is. They do not know that evil is the delight of the lust of acting and thinking contrary to Divine order, while good is the delight of the affection of acting and thinking according to Divine order; nor do they know that there are myriads of lusts entering into and composing every individual evil, and myriads of affections entering into and composing every individual good, and that these myriads are in such connected order in man's interiors that it is not possible to change one without at the same time changing all. Those who do not know this may believe or suppose that evil, which to them appears to be one single entity, can easily be removed; and that good, which also appears to be one single entity, can be introduced into its place. As these do not know what evil is and what good is they cannot but suppose that there is such a thing as instantaneous salvation and also immediate mercy; but it will be seen in the last chapter of this treatise that these are not possible.
 Fourth: Those who believe in instantaneous salvation and immediate mercy do not know that affections, which belong to the will, are nothing but changes of state of the purely organic substances of the mind, and that thoughts, which belong to the understanding, are nothing but changes and variations in the form of these substances, and that memory is a permanent state of these changes and variations. Everyone acknowledges, when it is stated, that affections and thoughts exist only in substances and their forms, which are subjects; and as these exist in the brain,* which is full of substances and forms, they are said to be purely organic forms. No one who thinks rationally can help laughing at the fanciful notions of some that affections and thoughts do not exist in forms that are substantiated, but that they are exhalations formed into shapes by heat and light like images appearing in the atmosphere. For thought can no more exist apart from a substantial form than sight apart from its form which is the eye, hearing apart from its form which is the ear, and taste apart from its form which is the tongue. If you examine the brain you will see innumerable substances, and likewise fibres; you will also see that everything in it is organised. What need is there of any other than this ocular proof?
 The question arises, What is affection and what is thought in the mind? This may be inferred from all the things in general and in particular in the body where there are many viscera, each fixed in its own place and all performing their own functions by changes and variations of state and form. It is well known that they are engaged in their own operations - the stomach, the intestines, the kidneys, the liver, the pancreas, and the spleen, the heart and the lungs, each organ in its respective operation. All these operations are kept in motion from within, and to be moved from within is to be moved by means of changes and variations of state and form. Hence it may be evident that the operations of the purely organic substances of the mind are of a similar nature, with this difference, that the operations of the organic substances of the body are natural, while those of the mind are spiritual, and that both act together as one by correspondences.
 The nature of the changes and variations of state and form in the organic substances of the mind, which are affections and thoughts, cannot be shown to the eye; but still they may be seen as in a mirror from the changes and variations in the state of the lungs in speaking and in singing. There is, moreover, a correspondence; for the sound of the voice in speaking and singing, and also the articulations of sound, which are the words of speech, and the modulations of singing, are caused by means of the lungs, and sound corresponds to affection and speech to thought. Further, sound and speech are produced by affection and thought; and this is effected by changes and variations in the state and form of the organic substances in the lungs, and from the lungs through the trachea or windpipe, in the larynx and glottis, then in the tongue and finally in the lips. The first changes and variations of the state and form of sound take place in the lungs, the second in the trachea and larynx, the third in the glottis by the various openings of its orifice, the fourth in the tongue by its various adaptations to the palate and teeth, and the fifth in the lips by their various modifications of form. Hence it may be evident that the mere changes and variations, successively continued, in the state of organic forms produce sounds and their articulations, which are speech and singing. Now, since sound and speech are produced from no other source than the affections and thoughts of the mind, for they exist from these and are never apart from them, it is clear that the affections of the will are changes and variations in the state of the purely organic substances of the mind, and that the thoughts of the understanding are changes and variations in the form of those substances, as is the case in the pulmonary substances.
 As affections and thoughts are simply changes in the state of the forms of the mind, it follows that memory is nothing else than a permanent state of these changes. For all changes and variations of state in organic substances are such that once they have become habitual they are permanent. Thus the lungs are habituated to produce various sounds in the trachea, to vary them in the glottis, to articulate them in the tongue, and to modify them in the mouth; and when once these organic activities have become habitual such sounds are in the organs and can be reproduced. That these changes and variations are infinitely more perfect in the organs of the mind than in those of the body is evident from what has been said in the treatise THE DIVINE LOVE AND WISDOM (n. 199-204),** where it is shown that all perfections increase and ascend with degrees and according to them. On this subject more may be seen below (n. 319).
AC 10367. And on the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Sabbath. That this signifies the state of good which is the end regarded, thus when man becomes the church and enters heaven, is evident from the signification of "the seventh day," as being a state of good, which is the end regarded. For when the six days which precede signify the state of man which precedes and prepares for the heavenly marriage, then the seventh day is when the man is in this marriage. This marriage is the conjunction of truth and good with man, thus when man becomes the church and enters heaven. That man enters heaven and becomes the church when he is in good, is because the Lord flows into the good with man, and through good into his truth. The influx betakes itself to the internal man where his heaven is, and through the internal into the external where is his world; and therefore unless the man is in good, his internal man is not opened, but remains shut, however much he may be in truths as to doctrine. And as heaven is in the internal man, it follows that when this is opened the man is in heaven, for heaven is not in a place, but in man's interiors. That man has been created according to the image both of heaven and of the world; his internal man according to the image of heaven, and his external according to the image of the world; may be seen in the places cited in n. 9279, 9706.
AC 10367. And on the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Sabbath. That this signifies the state of good which is the end regarded, thus when man becomes the church and enters heaven, is evident from the signification of "the seventh day," as being a state of good, which is the end regarded. For when the six days which precede signify the state of man which precedes and prepares for the heavenly marriage, then the seventh day is when the man is in this marriage. This marriage is the conjunction of truth and good with man, thus when man becomes the church and enters heaven. That man enters heaven and becomes the church when he is in good, is because the Lord flows into the good with man, and through good into his truth. The influx betakes itself to the internal man where his heaven is, and through the internal into the external where is his world; and therefore unless the man is in good, his internal man is not opened, but remains shut, however much he may be in truths as to doctrine. And as heaven is in the internal man, it follows that when this is opened the man is in heaven, for heaven is not in a place, but in man's interiors. That man has been created according to the image both of heaven and of the world; his internal man according to the image of heaven, and his external according to the image of the world; may be seen in the places cited in n. 9279, 9706.
 That the whole man is such as he is as to good, and not as to truth without good, everyone who reflects is able to know; for by means of and according to this he deals with others, feels with them, conjoins himself with them, and suffers himself to be led by them; but not by means of his truth, unless this is in accord with his good. By "good" is meant his delight, his pleasure, or his love; for all things that belong to these are to the man goods, and insofar as he is left to himself, so as to think from himself, he regards as truths those things which favor these goods. From this it can be seen that a man is conjoined with the Lord by means of good, and never by means of truth without good.
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The Organic Mind: Discovering the Mental World of Eternity (2008) || The Spiritual Function of Neologisms (2008) || Lecture Notes on Mental Anatomy (3 volumes) (2007) || Principles of Theistic Psychology (18 volumes) (2004) || A Man of the Field: Forming the New Church Mind (3 volumes) (2002) || The Unity Model of Marriage (2001-2007) || Moses, Paul, and Swedenborg (1999) || Swedenborg Encyclopedia of Theistic Psychology (1996) || De Hemelsche Leer Commentary (1996) || The Doctrine of the Wife (1985) ||
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