Meditation on a Candle, Meditation on Christ

January 6th, 2021

       A candle symbolizes Christ, specifically his self-giving love and the gifts of life we receive from Him. The candle provides light and warmth as it consumes its own substance, the wax. The wax and wick work in symbiosis, in other words, form a union that sustains a flame when lit. They work in symbiosis, (though in a simpler way), like the heart and lungs work together in inion to sustain every cell of the body with nutrients. The wax and wick work in union to sustain a flame. In its own small way the candle is a reflection of the sun. In the sun there is a union between gravity and nuclear fusion for these cause the form of the sun. Nuclear fusion is ignited in the core of the sun by the immense pressure of gravity caused by the immense mass of the sun. In turn nuclear fusion expands against the gravity while consuming the mass of the sun and creates light and heat.

       So too, Jesus gives of his own substance – He merged his body and soul into perfect union and thus glorified His body so that light was exponentially more available to man. And this light is the source of never ending in-filling love. He ‘drew all things unto himself’. And, when we are regenerated, and thus have light in ourselves, we give light to each other.

    In the candle the wick, usually braided cotton, burns and produces a flame. When the wick is lit a chain of events begins. Wax, which is present on and near the wick, begins to melt. At that point, the wick absorbs the liquid wax (which has just melted) and pulls it upwards (due to capillary action). The heat of the flame vaporizes the fuel (molten wax), which in turn combines with oxygen in the air (combustion) to produce a constant flame.

     A candle uses heat to produce light. In order to do that, it makes use of a process called combustion, which is basically the burning of a substance in the presence of oxygen, and produces heat and light. Here, the fuel is wax, which is composed of complex carbon compounds. Wax burns in the presence of oxygen to produce carbon dioxide gas, which is colorless. The smoke that you see is because wax never burns in a completely clean way.

     This process in a candle is a simple example of a universal principle. The pulling-in and wicking-up, or capillary action, of the wax as fuel is an example of the universal principle that everything has its beginning from outermost parts, and these outer parts provide for and moves toward the essential inner action; meaning, in all brith and manifestation,  the external parts are first made and the internal parts are made from it. For instance, in the embryo in the womb the beginning of the arterial system is in the skin, not the heart. This may seem surprising, but it is illustrated by the similar and well-known fact that the beginnings of the woody fibres of trees are in the leaves, not the stem or the roots. Through the pith and the delicate fibres of the bark, nourishment ascends to the first tender leaves, and from these descends the first woody fibres that provide the build-up between the bark and the pith, (the leaves also provide the fibres that build the roots. Through these woody and cortical fibres sap afterwards ascends to the leaves, and new buds and leaves are formed, which in turn send down other fibres, and thus the trunk of the tree grows in concentric layers of wood – every fibre of which has descended from the leaves. In a similar way, the materials and strands of the nervous system, the beginnings of blood vessels, and the tissues of the organs are produced in the skin, and are sustained and reproduced from tissues of the skin. The process of membranes being produced in the ‘ultimates of the body, and especially from the skin’ comes from a universal principle that operates throughout life.

     A similar process took place in Jesus, though of much larger scope. The process that took place in Christ is the universal master-key for all processes. It humbles us to contemplate the magnitude of what Jesus did, but things like the candle help us to see it.  It is ultimately incomprehensible to understand Jesus’s process because he is infinite and we are finite – but that is no reason not to seek – it just means there is no end to what we can seek, and come to understand. The whole reason He was born here was to make himself accessible and known, so that He could redeem and regenerate our soul. 

      Jesus in His life on earth, day by day, moment by moment, ‘consumed’ the hereditary evil in His body. His hereditary evil was in the body only, which is of the external part of the self. His internal was divine because from the Father and thus contained no evil, but divine good and truth. Because He was born on earth, Like all humans, He had hereditary evil from His mother who was human. By ‘consumed the hereditary evil’, I mean He removed the evil out of Himself by overcoming each and every temptation that confronted Him, or that tried to seduce Him. He could be drawn in to temptation because He had hereditary evil in His body, but by addressing and overcoming each and every one – even to the last on the cross – He made his human body divine! In this process He carried the whole of humanity with Him in an internal way. Humanity had lost its connection to God by becoming almost completely external in its religion and so spiritually had atrophied. People don’t understand that this was a very real disconnect in the psyche and soul of man, a disconnect of the avenues that can bond us to heaven and God. Jesus rebuilt these avenues of connection in the psyche of mankind by doing it in himself in a body, on earth, among us; by loving all humanity, by teaching people, and by establishing the new church.

     Just as the union of the wax and wick sustain a flame that can light a room, the union of Jesus body and soul produces light and heat that sustains the whole of the universe and all mankind. Light and heat  produced from a candle brings light and warmth to people in a room. In Jesus, from the Holy marriage of His divine body and soul proceeds, as from a fountain, the Holy fire that created and sustains all of life. Unlike a candle, or anything else that exists, God is uncreated. Like a candle Jesus was born on the material earth – the divine one had to overcome the inertia of this world, and He did. Jesus made His body divine in the resurrection – and took it up into heaven. Jesus is in the midst of the spiritual sun above heaven from which proceeds wisdom (light) and love (heat), and these are life, the very spiritual substance of all life, and that perpetually sustains life. 

 

 

 

 

 

Innocence Never Goes Away: The Meaning and Consequences of the Principle ‘You Are Either For Or Against Me’

June 29th, 2020

 

The Lord said ‘you are either for me or against me’. Our relationship with Him is reciprocal. People have to inwardly choose of their own will to make themself vulnerable and open to receiving God, and some are not willing. People know how to look good on the outside sometimes, while shut down, closed, or have ill-will on the inside. Entertaining evil, Chronic pride and denial eventually closes the internals of a person. Swedenborg says people can refuse God to the point their internals become closed, and such a person can not receive heaven.

Choosing to not accept God is at the same time actively rejecting God at some point, which is another way of saying we are ‘either for or against God’. No one can presume to be neutral to God. Acknowledging God makes him present, by denying Him we, at some point, lose the presence and protection of his angels (to the degree we reject) because reception is reciprocal, that is, God receives us to the degree we reach and open to Him from our will (for he is always turned to us). On earth people have an internal and external self and we can hide in the external. We can ‘put on a face’ with our body and do good and moral things for the sake of business and appearance, while being selfish and entertain evil inside. Remains (innocence stored in our soul) are always there, but become dormant and closed when we chronically reject God. As long as we are on earth, as I understand it, it is possible to reform, although it requires cognition to willingly submit to him, so it often becomes more difficult as we get old because of habit, fixation and loss of cognition.

Once in the spiritual world a person cannot change the basic constellation that has formed in their soul. The constellation is determined by the degree of correspondence between our internal and external self at the time of death. The more they are in harmony the more heavenly, the less in harmony the more hellish. The constellation then is like a seed from which we grow. The constellation itself can’t change anymore because we no longer have the material component of our body from which it was formed in conjunction with the soul. In the spiritual world we only have the spiritual body. The spiritual body has refined abilities that are many times greater than the physical body. If the constellation is receptive to heavenly light it grows and increases in joy for eternity. If not it is in a hell according to its types of evil loves.

In truth there is great pain in rejecting God, and this is because of the presence of remains. The remains are urging us to not be hard hearted but to receive him. Remains soften our heart so we become humbled and see and cry out to God. Those who persist in rejecting him have to keep doubling down over and over to stifle the pain from the presence of remains until the remains are silenced, and closed. But they never go away.

Light – It’s Meaning And Its Source: It’s Role To the Heart of Devotion

April 6th, 2020


Light corresponds to wisdom. This is often used as a metaphor, but it is an actual truth. They correspond in their image and function – they both shine and illuminate, and are both in union, light with heat and wisdom with love. Light is natural and wisdom is spiritual. From the natural sun radiates heat and light which sustain all life. From the spiritual sun, (which there is only one of and it is above heaven), radiates love and wisdom. For in the midst of the spiritual sun is the lord. In him is the Holy Marriage between his divine body and divine soul, and from this marriage proceeds Holy Fire as from a fountain, or as from a ‘spring of living water’. From the Holy Fire is generated the spiritual substance of life, love and wisdom. Love and wisdom sustain all life, and also are the containers of an infinite variety of spiritual gifts and qualities of love, and specific principles of wisdom. We tend to think of love and wisdom as abstractions, but they are not. The human soul is like an organ, the highest form in the universe because it is made in God’s image. Just as the eye is an organ that receives light, or the ear receives sound, the human soul is made (by the infinite genius of God) to receive love and wisdom. We receive love by our God given faculty of being able to will, and wisdom by our God given faculty of being able to understand. These are the essentials of having life, identity, self-hood and freedom. We can perceive that love and wisdom are spiritual substance simply by observing our affections. We can feel the affections are real in our body and soul – they cause sensation, emotions and thought. There are affections of many kinds, and all thought is proceeded by affection. An internal desire initiates thinking a thought. The human soul is corrupted by evil, so we have the capacity for both good and evil. We can invert the spiritual substance from God into its opposite – hate and falsity. (But this is a whole other story). The love and wisdom that proceeds from God is always Good. It is goodness itself in all of its innumerable particulars. So we human beings are receptacle. Some people think this is a diminishing thing to say, but it’s really not. The incalculable value of seeing this is that we perceive we are truly in a position of humility to God, and, in seeing this we can open to feel how He loves us beyond words. If one does feel it is diminishing to be a receptacle then so be it if it helps to humble ourself. God can only be approached in humility. This is not weakness, but takes strength, faith and love – and returns them magnified. It is often very hard to do because we have all kinds of feeling and thoughts in the way – of anger, doubt, fear, resignation, hate and many others. So it takes some time, focus and desire – and being in the Word. The Word is divine truth from Him, and divine truth, is the light that illumines our mind.

WHY JESUS SAID, “LEAVE JUDGMENT TO ME”: INSIGHT FROM C. S. LEWIS AND SWEDENBORG ON WHY HE SAID THIS

March 8th, 2020
WHY JESUS SAID, “LEAVE JUDGMENT TO ME”: INSIGHT FROM C. S. LEWIS AND SWEDENBORG ON WHY HE SAID THIS
 
“There’s only one true faith; faith in the Lord our Savior Jesus Christ. It exists in believing He is God, the God of heaven and earth, that He is one with the Father. Faith is truth. And the truth is Jesus is God. Truth cannot be split or cut in half and maintain its trueness” (Swedenborg).
I believe this statement by Swedenborg is true, and it’s important to see HOW it is true here on earth.
In the spiritual world, the way we believe and love God determines more than anything where we go, even as to the particular society of heaven, (or if we go at all).
Here on earth it is the same except that in the natural world we have an external and internal self in such a way that we can hide, we can de in denial. In the spiritual world you can’t hide like here – we are our love and beliefs, and they are seen by the angels.
In hell they try desperately to hide and deceive, and they live in a fantasy that becomes an insanity, but are seen for what they are by anyone above. Those in hell cannot stand to be seen, and burn with rage, hate, jealousy and vengeance.
 
On earth the state of our soul is partially conditioned by our place of living, by culture, beliefs, religion and many of these can be false. But here is a very important point to remember – even if a person believes in a religious falsity but does so in good faith – God honors the internal state of love, not the falsity. If the inner love and faith is good, the falsity can later be corrected. This is a big part of why the Lord said, “Leave Judgment to me”. Man can have insight to a persons moral and physical state, but a person’s true spiritual state is only known by the Lord.
 
This point is made most beautifully and insightfully by C.S. Lewis in his last Narnia book, ‘The Last Battle’. In it there is a prince from the dark empire that worships Tarsheesh, which is basically a demon. The prince serves his king with honor, and fights with honor, Aslan and the Narnians are the prince’s sworn enemies. He pursues the Narnian’s and tries to defeat them. At one point near the end they run through a doorway to escape and find themselves in bright light and a beautiful paradise, and they gradually recognize they are in heaven. The Prince chases them through the door, and is bewildered that he is in light, and, being overwhelmed his sits beneath a tree. That he could see the door at all is a metaphor from the bible where Jesus tells that there is ‘a path and a gate that leads to heaven’. Jesus tells the people ‘do not stumble on this rock’. Those who stumble do so because they cant see it, but those who see it go the right way. They see it because they have spiritual perception.
In the story most of the people could not see the door, but the prince saw it and went thought it, not knowing what he was doing.
Under the tree the Prince is very confused, and then he sees Aslan coming to him. He is terrified at the magnificence of the Lion, but being a man of honor he faces him and says to Aslan, ‘kill him now’, for he sees he has been wrong all his life and he is humbled.
But Aslan tells him, “Welcome, my good and faithful son’. The prince is profoundly mortified and says, ‘But I have been your sworn enemy all my life, and I worshiped Tarsheesh”. Aslan then teaches the Prince that Tarsheesh is a demon, and that he was deceived, but that all his life he acted honorably and yearned to see the real Tarsheesh – and because his heart was true he has came face to face with Aslan.
This is spiritual Beauty.
Nevertheless, even for someone like the prince, whose heart is right but has false believes, they still can not enter heavenly light until they are taught correctly and acknowledge that Jesus the divine human, the one God of heaven. Because their heart is right and good internally the can receive the teaching of the angels.
This story is certainly not a justification for not seeking the Lord, it just shows that the Lord is perfect justice from infinite wisdom. It is a painful thing that so many people and friends can’t embrace and say they love the Lord.
The Lord and the Bible are the way given to us that provide knowledge of and conjunction with heaven, and it is best to follow these.

The Development of an Inner Sanctuary: Interpretation of Psalm 23

December 4th, 2019

Psalm 23

A psalm of David.

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
    he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
    for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
    forever.

 

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. The Lord Jesus is our guide and inner teacher, we are meant to be led by Him. He is the living Word and teaches us through the Word and by the Holy spirit, which is His presence. He teaches those who genuinely yearn for good in their life, church and country. The Lord and the life He gives restores our wholeness in spite of circumstances. The inner life He offers us is the greatest treasure, but we have to fight for it. The more we allow ourself to be led by the Lord the more we become our true self.

He makes me lie down in green pastures. The 23 Psalm is a lot about having an inner sanctuary. In love and faith to the Lord we can have a sense of inner peace. This is an inward resource that provides direction, and self-agency in spite of what problems may come. I am a hospice chaplain and hope to help others find this inner pasture as they pass the days in bed. One can see the kind of inner resources people have and I help them to develop their inner life as best I can. Green pastures represents spiritual nourishment; and the whole phrase means peace that comes after trials. In John in regard to pasture the Lord says, “I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture.  The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full”.

He leads me beside quiet waters. This also refers to inner sanctuary and the mercy the Lord gives to all who go through trails.

 He refreshes my soul. My sense of this is that for those who yearn for God, they receive an intimate love for Him, and with that the light of wisdom. I have often experienced that when I read the Word and seek to understand the scriptures, I feel a palpable light enter into my my mind and body and brings a sense of joy and purpose and relief from stress and anxiety. My soul feels refreshed in a spiritual way, very much like our mind and body does at the sight of a calm body of water, or at the sight of a flowing river in a green valley. God can be seen in nature, the innate moral yearnings of man, and in the Word.

Our psyche lets go and receives the Lord when we come into humility. True humility never remains unknown like a spring flower hidden within grass that releases its fragrance far and wide. Humility is the soul’s true beauty because beauty is the form of love. It makes it possible to find strength and rest unlike pride which is wearisome to the soul

He guides me along the right paths. In the spiritual world there are paths that lead to heaven or hell. In the world of spirits one is being constantly vastated either toward heaven or hell according to one’s own loves and inclinations. The Lord and his angels also walk with us in this world in the sense they are constantly trying to guide us to the heavenly path. Swedenborg writes that the ‘stone along the path’ spoken of in the Bible is a real place along the path that leads out of the world of spirits to heaven or to hell. Those who cannot see the stone in the path stumble on it and fall the wrong way. Those who can see and accept the guidance of the angels from their inner love are guided to their place in heaven. 

       This phrase also has to do with the way ‘paths’ are built in our psyche. Paths our built in our mind by the union of exercising our love and intelligence in union for a useful life accomplishment, whether that be big or small. The path is formed by exercising our skills and inner gifts from the love of being useful, and becomes a bond with God particularly when we realize the good we do comes from God. The path is laid when action is taken.

 For His name’s sake. By the word “Name” (including Jehovah, the Lord, and Jesus Christ), is not meant just the name of one person, but the whole infinite Kaleidoscope of truths and loves of which Jesus Christ is the source, and for which He is worshiped. The power in the Name of Jesus Christ is not in the mere name but in loving and understanding who He is and what he did for us. He redeemed everything by His supreme acts of love. The resurrection can be compared to the dynamics of Supernovas, where all the elements on the periodic table are produced in the moments before and during the explosion, and where immeasurable heat and light are produced and distributed to the universe. In the resurrection Jesus renewed all things, He distributed spiritual gifts to the souls of man, He paved the paths to heaven that had been lost in the psyche and soul of man. In Him are all the infinite and interconnected truths and loves of life. He is the source and He is the way, and we have the opportunity to know the way by the gifts he gave us to use.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.  Jesus gives us the eternal promise that He is closest when we are lowest, undergoing trials and temptation, and most in need of him. Trials will always come in this world, but we can always trust in the Lord that He will be with us, and that he is just. There is no greater power than divine truth from Him.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. In correspondences the table is a container of celestial truths, because good food means spiritual nourishment, and the table holds these in abundance. Our soul is made to be a receptacle of wisdom from the Lord, as a plant receives light from the sun and converts it to life energy. The anointing of the head with oil also corresponds to the taking-in of spiritual nourishment. This verse is reminiscent of Mary of Bethany anointing Jesus. She was so filled with love for Him and the revelation that He is God that her ‘cup overflowed with Joy’. Love elevates perception, and perception elevates love so she was on fire with the union of love and awareness. In spite of the difficulties of the circumstance Mary seized the moment and anointed Jesus while he was alive. For her incredible act of love – being the first to understand that He is God – Jesus memorialized her action for all time.

Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. The Lord gave us life from the moment of conception. From His infinite wisdom He made us to fill a unique need in the universe at the time of our conception. We have to live into it from our own will. Everyone ever born is meant for heaven (chosen), but because we are free many choose poorly. (Freedom is both the means of salvation and the cause of hell). Nevertheless, all life is sacred, and all are meant for heaven where God wants nothing more than to prepare a place of us at the table.

The Form of our soul at death is determined by the concordance between our external and internal self. What this means is there is a union formed between faith and charity when we act on them together, but not so if we make them separate. From the union of love and intelligence (charity and faith) springs forth renewed life like water from a fountain (as it did in Mary). At the same time, in this process, we also bond with God (to the degree we developed it) for He is the source of the good we are expressing.  The constellation of this union at the time of death does not change. This is the meaning of ‘As the tree falleth, so it lies”. Bringing our internal and external into harmony by the way we lived is a spiritual practice. Our internal and external being in harmony speaks to being genuine, honest, humble and strong. If they are separated we have been dishonest, avoidant, lukewarm and cannot be in the light of heaven. The practice of union is the source of all genuine spirituality. The constellation of this union at death is like a seed which, when exposed to heavenly light, will grow in magnificent ways we cannot conceive of now, and it does so for eternity. (In my house I will build you many mansions.) He is with us always. 

Part 2: How it Is that in Observing Dark Matter Science has Observed the Fingers of God

July 9th, 2019

Science understands and describes the effects of dark matter and dark energy amazingly well, but they say they have no idea what it actually is in itself. They are disconnected from an idea of the source of dark matter. In this essay I will provide a clear picture of the source of dark matter.

Unbeknown to pure science there are universal spiritual principles that we can also rely on and help us to see the direction of study. In this regard our guiding principle is this: there is an innate force in all things in the universe to seek the human form. The universe itself, if one were able to see it in its whole, is in the form of the perfect human. (See the articles in this blog that discuss in detail how it is that the human form is a universal form in the universe). It is vital to perceive this truth to get a tangible sense of what follows. I have been showing throughout this series of essays how there is an innate force that originates from influx from heaven and is received within all created things, and that it is this force that drives all things to manifest in and serve – some to a remote degree and some to a high degree – the human form. The mineral kingdom is the lowest degree, the plant kingdom is the mid degree, and the animal degree the highest degree. Above that is human consciousness and then God. This innate inclination in all things living and not living to seek, produce and serve the human form is essential in explaining the mysteries of the universe.

Scientists show that dark matter does not interact with light, heat, or radiation, but it does interact with gravity. They say that dark matter is the creative force that causes the universe to construct; they see that it is the force that built the magnificent universe we see now. Dark matter has positive gravity and brings things together, and Dark energy has repulsive gravity and drives things apart and is destructive, and the two are in constant battle. (In this essay we will concentrate on Dark matter and in the next on dark energy). Scientists describe dark matter as the influence or force that caused matter to first clump together or coalesce, which regular matter could not do on its own, thus from the discovery of science we can only conclude that this force contains an inner knowledge that guides the formation of stars, galaxies, the structure of the cosmic web, and thus the whole of the universe. Scientist say that Dark matter gravitationally moves into forms and regular matter follows. Dark matter orchestrates the movement of regular matter similar to the way dew adheres to a spider web. Where does this intelligence in Dark matter come from and how does it transfer into the natural world?

In the previous essay we identified several meta leaps in the development of the universe. Now we shall observe the great Meta-leap that science is missing. The effects scientist see from call dark matter are the result of what is called ‘conatus’. This is a term Swedenborg coined. Conatus is a sphere (sphere as in ‘effect of influence’, or ‘spiritual atmosphere’) that proceeds from the one spiritual sun and sustains all the spiritual world, and in turn the natural world; (in the midst of this one sun is God). Spheres contain the intelligence and the energy that direct the manifesting of all the unending fruitfulness and variety in the universe. Because it operates from the spiritual to the natural it works by correspondences, which we shall explain further in a moment. Ultimately, it is this Conatus that compels the shaping of all things in the universe to be part of, and to serve the universal human. The end purpose of creation is to populate heaven (the Lord’s kingdom) with angels, and all angels are former humans from (an) earth in the human form, and, as said before, the whole of heaven is in the shape and relational structure of the human form. If we know the end purpose of something, then we are able to better understand the means of getting there and how all the specific operation of the means work. Conatus is the means to this end purpose in which there are innumerable specific functions just as there are in the human body. It is a universal principle that which is the end purpose is served by all things that exist in some way or another; so all things that exist, even if in a peripheral way, are part of and serve the human form.

Lets look at Swedenborg’s description of conatus and compare with science’s description of the dark universe:

“The progression of the creation of the universe was from its First (which is the Lord encircled by the sun) to outmosts which are lands (matter)…” (DLW 314). “It should be known that (in forming) this image of creation the heat, light, and atmospheres of the natural sun and its world contribute nothing whatever. It is only the heat, light, and atmospheres of the sun of the spiritual world that do this, bringing that image with them, and clothing it with the forms of uses of the vegetable kingdom. The heat, light, and atmospheres of the natural world simply open the seeds, keep their products in a state of expansion, and clothe them with the matters that give them fixedness. And this is done not by any forces from their own sun (which viewed in themselves are null), but by forces from the spiritual sun, by which the natural forces are unceasingly impelled to these services”. (DLW 315).

Scientist admit they call dark matter dark matter because they are in the dark as to what it is and its cause, and because it doesn’t interact with light, but they know it is the essential force in creating the universe. Scientist describe the phenomenon very much the same as Swedenborg does, that is, they say dark matter is the architect of the universe; that it has gravity that causes regular matter (the natural world we know) to take its forms, i.e. dark matter ‘clothes itself’ in regular matter. Just as scientist say about dark matter, Swedenborg describes conatus as not being affected by heat and light at all. Scientist say regular matter is ‘just along for the ride’. Specifically, the telling characteristics of dark matter are that it does not interact with light, and that it is not affected by heat or radiation – but science declares that it does interact with gravity. (As you may recall from the last essay we described how in the early universe regular matter could not clump because there was such a blaze of heat and radiation, but dark matter could clump because it doesn’t interact with these. It is the clumping of dark matter’s gravity that caused regular matter to clump). By standing outside the influences of light, radiation, and heat dark matter is able to direct regular matter matter without obstruction. But its obstruction comes from dark energy (which we will discuss in the next essay). Swedenborg further describes Canotus in the following way:

Conatus does nothing of itself, but acts through forces corresponding to it, thereby producing motion; consequently that conatus is the all in forces, and through forces is the all in motion; and since motion is the outmost degree of conatus, through motion conatus exerts its power… For conatus is not force, nor is force motion, but force is produced by conatus, because force is conatus made active, and through force motion is produced; consequently there is no power in conatus alone, nor in force alone, but in motion, which is their product.

This quote is a challenge to understand without a lot of experience in reading Swedenborg, and we will not mine all its meaning here, but it introduces important principles in how conatus and and dark matter function. Any given entity that exists has these three factors, the root of which can be expressed as cause, effect, and end purpose; for instance, in the sun there is gravity (cause), nuclear fusion (effect), and the resulting equilibrium between the two which creates the body and use of the sun (end purpose). For now the first and foremost thing to take from the above quote is that conatus, force, and motion, act as one; they have distinct operations, but cannot exist or operate without each other, similar to the way the heart and lungs have distinct operations but cannot function without each other, nor can either exist unless in the body they serve, the life of the body being the end purpose. In this scenario conatus/dark matter is the unseen cause, the movement of regular matter is the effect, and the use they serve in the from created is the end purpose.

The second important thing to take from the above quote is that conatus, force, and motion communicate to each other by correspondences. This means that they are distinct in themselves, and each is at a different level or degree, but they function as one for the same purpose. Now to make this as tangible understandable as I can lets look at how these levels operate in something we all know – the human body. (It is important to me in communicating these ideas to the reader as tangibly understandable as I can). We can understand conatus by thinking of the affections  we feel in our body, and also that we feel from others. In the human body canotus is the will; for the will is the love and affections that are the first cause of all our actions. The effect is in all the innumerable components in the body and the mind that are the means, and the end purpose is the meaningful actions of our whole self.

A human being is a whole entity, a body, that is in the micro of the form of God. The will in a person is living conatus. The conatus in the natural world is non-living conatus, but the two correspond, so the dynamics of living conatus reveal the dynamics that take place in the non-living universe; and this is what science observes as dark energy and its role in the building of stars, galaxies, and the cosmic web.

 

A Description of the Immense Joy of the Angels that Visited the Shepherds in the Field

December 19th, 2016

The correspondence in the star that the kings followed is a good example of how holiness is the marriage of the natural and the spiritual. With God being born on earth, a great conjunction was restored between heaven and earth. God was physically entering the natural level for the first time. Because of this conjunction, by the law of correspondences, it could not be otherwise that a light would shine in both. The natural is the foundation of the spiritual, and what happens in one must have its counterpart in the other. They are connected so they affect one another, although they are separated by a discrete degree as explained before. In the spiritual world, the Lord always appears to the angels as the spiritual sun. So, in the process of His entering the natural world, light from the star was visible, even in the daylight on earth, for a time. I would conjecture that there may have been some kind of supernova in a star far away that burned so brightly that it could be seen shining in the daylight. The supernova would be a natural correspondence with the spiritual event. Or, I suppose it is possible that the Lord allowed the spiritual sun to be seen for a time, similar to the way He allowed the shepherds and many others to see light from heaven for a time. Either way, it was utterly holy, and it took place according to the law of correspondences.

In the moment of union there is revelation and inspiration, and the light burns brighter just as it did in Mary’s moment of sacred passion. The angels of heaven rejoiced greatly at this new hope for the restoration of good on earth because their great love, desire, and work is for the salvation of others more than anything else. As shown in the story of John the Baptist, the angels of heaven deeply lamented the great darkness that had overcome the earth and that hardly anyone knew the Lord at that time. So, upon receiving the great news that the Lord had taken upon Himself the extraordinary mission of being born on earth in order to save the world, their rejoicing was great beyond measure. The light from the star seen on earth was only the tip of the iceberg; it was a bleeding over, so to speak, of the immense joy and light bursting forth in heaven for the sake of earth. The divine itself was entering the natural world – the greatest event in history – and the star was the manifestation of the glory of this brightly burning union. The gospels give us an idea of how the rejoicing of heaven poured over into the natural world. At the time Jesus was born shepherds keeping watch in a field were visited by an angel. The angel was accompanied by bright light that suddenly immersed the shepherds during the night, and the angel spoke to them the joyous message that a savior was to be born in Bethlehem that very night. In Luke:

And suddenly there was with the angel
a multitude of the heavenly host praising
God and saying:
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”
So it was, when the angels had gone away
from them into heaven. (Luke 2:13-15)