Ancient people had knowledge that was lost and this is fairly obvious to most people. We only need to look at the Egyptian pyramids, Mayan pyramids, Stonehenge etc. to become aware of this. If you have an open mind in my view you can easily find out how this knowledge has been rediscovered and recorded in the writings of Emanuel Swedenborg. My challenge is that you look for yourself at what he claims.
Swedenborg maintains that there is an ancient science which eclipses all natural sciences and this has been recorded throughout ancient history in the form of what we call symbolism. He calls this symbolism “the language of correspondences” (a correspondence is defined as the Divine reflected in nature.) Further; he has presented in his writings what I believe to be the very keys to opening this ancient language of correspondences. He also points to the idea that much of this symbolism remains with us today but we have simply lost the ability to read it. Kings and Queens wear crowns and symbolic garments, ministers and priests have garments and rituals, judges and lawyers wear funny wigs and gowns and many other surviving ancient organisations have initiation ceremonies loaded with symbolism. But who knows what they all mean? No one does, because the knowledge of what they represent has been lost. But this day I offer you the proposal it has been revealed to us once again!
Let me give just one example here to get you started. We know there are two kinds of sight. One is the physical eye, the other is the eye of the understanding; and we are very much aware of this. Why else would we say “I see what you mean” or “Isn’t she bright” or “let me shed some light on the subject so you can see it more clearly”. If we did not have inner eyes, which correspond with our physical eyes, why would we say these things? It is the same with the light we shed on the problem. It’s not physical light because it lights up our understanding. So it corresponds to physical light.
In fact, Swedenborg claims that everything that exists in the outer world is a correspondence of something within and this is the ancient knowledge that was lost – the science of correspondences – but is now to be rediscovered. Why not consider seeking it out for yourself and feeling free to come back and commenting/questioning here if you want to?
Copyright 2011 Jack Dunion
Posted on23rd June 2011CategoriesMeaning of life, Symbolism
Interesting . To paraphrase the Theologia Germanica ..
It is sometimes said that the soul of Christ has two eyes: a left eye and a right one . In the beginning that right eye was fixed upon eternity and perfection and away from all failings, labour motions, griefs, pains and torments which happened only to the Outward Man. But the left eye beheld the creature and started to see difference within it; what was noble and what was not, what was good and what was not and upon such ideas was the Outward Man ordered. We cannot see as the left eye without blinding the right eye for the latter hinders the former’s vision and we cannot be the servant of two masters! There are some who would have both Christ and the World …and that can never be!
Note here that behind the difference in chapter numbering between Brierley-Tennant and, say, Winkworth, is the discovery of several variants of the text. In 1843 the Würtzburg-Bronnbach manuscript from 1497 was discovered – see D. Blamires – ‘Theologia Deutsch – Theologia Germanica: the book of the perfect life’ (2003). Catholic scholars were actually quite excited about the discovery of the text as they believed that Luther might have put his own slant upon his discovery. However, still later finds – especially the Dessau copy of the complete text – indicated that it was not Luther who had been putting the slant on things but rather the Bronnbach version which had deliberately ‘monasticised’ the wording.