Was Swedenborg wrong about women?

Apron housewife vacuuming denThere is a movement about by some followers of Emanuel Swedenborg’s theological writings to seriously challenge some of his ideas. Many of these challenges revolve around statements Swedenborg makes about women in his unique publication Conjugial Love (the spelling is correct—Swedenborg was told by angels to add an extra vowel to the word conjugal to communicate extra affection). These were not terrestrial women he spoke with, but female angels living in heaven!

(Swedenborg made the shocking claim that he was given permission, by the Lord God, to observe the spiritual world and to converse with those beings living there. This included conversations with women about their God-given roles. These roles seem to contradict current modern views.)

One of the dismissals that are given to explain Swedenborg’s seemingly flawed assessment about women and their roles, is that he was experiencing their souls from an outdated 18th century worldview.

This has not been my experience while reading and studying Conjugial Love. Swedenborg seems to be genuinely astonished by what the female angels were telling him. In fact, they “schooled him” and were offended to be called “women.” Instead, they demanded to be called wives.

Swedenborg learned from them that “working in the home” had a deeper significance than simply being a woman who adores her new household appliances above taking on the more challenging careers that men have traditionally held.

These angelic women performed their “wifely” duties inside the spiritual houses of their husbands’ hearts and minds. Household chores like cleaning the home and maintaining the furniture were elevated in heaven to where angelic wives were in charge of rearranging and keeping order within the thoughts and ideas of their husband’s innermost life.

Swedenborg learned that angelic wives were created by the Lord God to have this spiritual ability to get the “inside track” on the qualities of their husbands’ inner lives. (How else can intimacy be increased through an eternity?)

Unfortunately, men on earth are not allowing women to gain such intimate access into their innermost world. This is what most women complain about concerning men and what ultimately robs them of their God-designed purpose.

Having been stripped of their sacred importance in such a relationship—plus the economic realities of these times—women are reacting by attempting to prove that they are equal to men and just as capable of obtaining and performing any worldly profession. They are.

But deep and inner happiness can still elude them!

My wife and I have been married for almost four decades. She is a successful supervisor of a group of workers in a good-sized corporation (besides designing all my books). Yet I know she is constantly doing upkeep and arranging the furniture within my spiritual home.

She is happier than ever!


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 http://www.staircasepress.com
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2 Responses to Was Swedenborg wrong about women?

  1. lotharson says:

    Alright but why should not “angelic men” be exactly like “angelic women”?

    It seems one cannot escape the charge of an outdated theology.

    • thegodguy says:

      Modernity is what is outdated. The difference in male and female sexual organs are an extension of the differences between their souls. One man and one woman = one angel. Read Swedenboorg’s classic work “Heaven & Hell.”

      Spiritually yours,

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