The theological importance of Swedenborg’s science

Emanuel Swedenborg was a bold scientist who turned into a bold theologian. This move was more seamless than most students and researchers of his Writings suspect.

I would even like to stick my neck out and make the pronouncement that Swedenborg’s science was providentially designed to increase the amount of knowledge and information that could be reserved and stored up within our “remains.”

Swedenborg’s theological doctrine of “remains” is a unique concept not found in any other religious tradition. The only other place I have discovered this concept is in George Gurdjieff’s claim that divine data is hidden in the human subconscious where it is protected from earthly allurements and forms a plane for conscience to develop when one’s spiritual evolution is being activated. Gurdjieff also referred to this accumulation of divine data as the magnetic center.

Swedenborg described this same subconscious level of mind as being the internal natural mind, where the Lord God stores up innocent experiences of goodness and truth during childhood to form a mental plane toward which heavenly and angelic influences can be focused and directed. Swedenborg claimed that without such a plane or mental boundary to hold God’s spiritual influx we would all become inhuman and incapable of reasoning.

The development of this mental plane is thwarted over time by worldly influences. In later life, most of the new information we gain from our environment or from continued study cannot add to the development of this plane of spiritual conscience—unless it can be directed back and oriented towards heaven, the soul and God.

Swedenborg’s theistic science allows for this orientation!

Swedenborg’s scientific phase was always God-focused and led towards goodness. His Doctrine of Forms and Mathematical Philosophy of Universals (also known as the intuition of ends or uses), provides data that can continue to expand one’s spiritual remains and conscience because it lawfully tends inward (mental trajectory) toward God and heavenly things—not towards self or outwards through the faulty operation of our five senses.

This is why the science of correspondences is so important. Correspondences harmonize nature’s order and processes with spiritual order and process.

Swedenborg states that loving the neighbor turns the data in our brains back towards heavenly life and activates the evolution of conscience in our remains. So, you may be wondering why someone should be interested in a theologically friendly science when all that is needed is simple goodness of the heart and sincere love towards the neighbor.

The reason is that the more knowledge we have that can be oriented and elevated towards God the more we can expand our spiritual boundaries. This expansion requires embracing a holistic science based on universal principles and spiritual first causes.

The Lord’s New Jerusalem, the Crown of all Churches, which is currently being established on Earth will, from necessity, also consist of those who can make the additional effort to become more than mere biblical “Midianites.”

I am just scratching the surface of this most important topic for the 21st Century!

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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