Can God play a governing role in a universe maintained by scientific laws?

The quick answer is “yes.”

But the problem with such a question is that it assumes that scientists have got it right. According to scientist/theologian, Emanuel Swedenborg, God is law and order itself. Therefore, God does not violate scientific laws (even with miracles) when acting in the world. Swedenborg proposed a different model of scientific law that included many of the elements found in relativity theory, quantum physics and multi-dimensional string theory but were more in tune with God’s Holy nature.

Swedenborg’s approach to the physics ruling the universe on a fundamental level is based on spiritual laws operating in a non-physical realm. The closest thing modern science has to this idea of causal process is the notion of pre-geometry.

While scientists have a big problem grasping how dynamics and action can take place in a realm whose laws are stripped of their normal involvement with time and space, Swedenborg had no such difficulties.

Swedenborg stated that the future (God’s eternal goal) is present in all finite and temporal events. All finite events refer to a universal trajectory—so God’s Infinite and eternal activity can be involved completely at every point in space and sequence in time to promote this continuity of law and process.

Differential and integral calculus offers mathematical support for such laws of continuity within a universe in process. An action (real-valued function) converges to a limit. In mathematics, numbers do the tending. But in God’s scheme, endeavor or spirit seeks to become fixed within spacetime constraints. The nature of continuity is that action results from the endeavor (force) of a function adapting trajectory and finite form precisely to the endeavor’s disposition and quality. Each recovers the other as a correspondence or similitude. Just as there is a reciprocal relationship between action and its derivative form, there is reciprocal relationship between a particular (which commands the function) and a holistic event. Even in quantum physics, all action comes in wholes (Quanta or parcels). But in quantum physics the particulars become fuzzy and unobservable.

The current measurement problem in quantum physics is due to scientists finding no causal kinship by which quantum tendencies (probability distributions) could generate actual results through the principle of resemblance and affinity. In other words, the outcomes of measurement in quantum physics are not seen as represented through any form of self-similarity from this indeterminate substrate and microscopic scale. Some physicists have speculated that a principle of correspondence is involved by which quantum physics gives way to, and transforms into classical physics on the larger scales we can directly experience. On this larger scale, it is profoundly obvious that nature is on an incessant course towards self-organization. If there is self-consistency and continuity working in the laws of nature (as scientists believe) then this endeavor towards increased complexity in the universe must be inherent in first principles (and thus also apply to quantum physics).

From everything discussed so far, this means that if God is ruling things, all process, coherent structure and complexity in the manifest universe must recover a spiritual and unifying first principle. The universe is indeed unified.

Swedenborg claimed this spiritual first principle and primal (a piori) creative substance is LOVE. The essence of love is to unite through reciprocation and cooperation. All coherent organization consists of reciprocal functions in both the orderly motions of star systems and in the evolved and orderly processes of bio-complexity. So all orderly things in the universe are an analog and expression of God’s infinite love.

God can therefore lawfully act in the world by focusing infinite action at every point in space and sequence in time to recover spiritual love as an ultimate goal through an evolutionary trajectory. This is why religion has been given to the human race—which has the intelligence and psychical capacity for promoting sincere mutual love.

These are some of the topics my upcoming book “Proving God” addresses.

About thegodguy

EDWARD F. SYLVIA, M.T.S. Philosopher/Theologian Edward F. Sylvia attended the School of Visual Arts in New York and received his Master of Theological Studies at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, CA and a Certificate of Swedenborgian Studies from the Swedenborgian House of Studies. He is a member of the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences (C.T.N.S.) and the Swedenborg Scientific Association (S.S.A.). Award-winning author of "Sermon From the Compost Pile: Seven Steps Toward Creating An Inner Garden" and "Proving God," which fulfills a continuing vision that God’s fingerprints of love can be found everywhere in the manifest universe. His most recent book, "Swedenborg & Gurdjieff: The Missing Links" is an edgy collection of anti-intuitive essays for personal transformation that challenges and inspires. He has been a student of the ideas of both Emanuel Swedenborg and George I. Gurdjieff for over thirty years. Read more about TheGodGuy, his books and his ideas at
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4 Responses to Can God play a governing role in a universe maintained by scientific laws?

  1. Sue says:

    I don’t understand most of that.
    I can believe that God exists and that He doesn’t violate scientific laws. I can believe that scientific laws are governed by God. There are many scientists who believe in God, like Francis Collins.

    But, science isn’t looking for spiritual answers to its problems. Is it?

    So you could make an excellent point that science can go along on its merry way and yet there is a God. But you’ll never get science to use God as an explanation for anything. Science isn’t going to explain the chlorophyll cycle by saying “God nourishes plants”.

  2. thegodguy says:

    Dear Sue,

    Keep reading Swedenborg!

    You seem oblivious to the fact that the Lord’s strategy for using Swedenborg as a servant first involved the study of science. But Swedenborg, who was indeed looking to find spiritual principles within science (Theistic science), created models that the academic world has yet to embrace.

    My book “Proving God” shows how Swedenborg’s science sought spiritual answers.

    How can the natural world correspond to the spiritual world if the laws of nature were not analogous to spiritual law? What is there for the Lord God to violate? Spiritual forces flow into the objects of the world. When God creates a miracle spiritual laws and forces simply supervene more intensely into the world of dead matter (just like the human mind supervenes on the physical brain)..

    The science you speak of is that which embraces a materialistic ideology (this is SCIENTISM not science). Swedenborg argues that true science/philosophy is the bridegroom of theology.

    Spiritually yours,

  3. sks says:

    Interesting stuff. I’m looking forward to seeing how you explain this in more detail in your book! I’m amazed I’ve never heard of Emanuel Swedenborg before I ran across your stuff. Looking forward to more.

  4. thegodguy says:

    Dear sks,

    My efforts are to help Swedenborg find his true place within the history of human ideas. Please let me know what you think of my new book after you have read it!

    Spiritually yours,

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