De Hemelsche Leer, or The Epistles for the New Church
see also Spiritual Geography
see also theistic psychology
see also Religious Psychology
see also Theistic Psychology
I would be delighted to know your reactions. Please e-mail me at email@example.com
De Hemelsche Leer--Part 3--
Published on the Web in 2001
address of this document is
Birthing the Doctrine: How Biography Recapitulates Evolution (Matrix 16)
Explanations of the above chart (matrix 16) are given in a section below that discusses matrix 23.
NOTE: the Links in the tabulation of discoveries below take you to further explanations and samples of the topics mentioned.
The diagram above (matrix 18) shows the exact overlap between my earlier work on ethnosemantic hexagrams (1975 see tabulation of discoveries above) and the six degrees of regeneration in the Writings of Swedenborg (1981 onward for me). Strangely, but significantly, I did not see the relation clearly until April of 2001. In 1981 when I started reading the Writings it seemed to me that I was abandoning or laying aside all my busy work on ethnosemantics that started in 1975. I did not look at it again until I was preparing the manuscripts for scanning and publishing on the Web in 1998. Still I didn't see it then either. Instead of the ethnosemantic system I started working on the ennead matrix and the relation between them was not clarified in my mind. Even today I am still searching for the relation between the ennead based on the Writings and the hexagrammatic system I discovered before that (see tabulation of discoveries). I think the reason I see it now in April 2001 is because I just entered the interior rational phase at age 62. This article on De Hemelsche Leer Parts 1, 2, and 3 thus marks my transition zone into interior celestial consciousness. I can now see the Doctrine of the Church in the interior celestial sense which brings me to an interior perception of the hexagrammatic scheme I developed in my pre-Swedenborgian natural and sensuous thinking. I thought to myself then that this was my own discovery and invention and attributed it all to my self-intelligence and genius. Now I see that it was given me through the vertical community from the Lord. Yet I was unable to comprehend what I was given to see.
For example: I saw intuitively that there was a difference between the first trigram (White, Yellow, Green) and the second trigram (Blue, Brown, Black). But I didn't know what the difference was in an explicit sense. I called the first trigram "the Light trigram" and the other trigram "the Dark Trigram." I also intuited that there was a distinct break between them and I called this break "the double line." I realized that my some unknown way we cross this double line in the motion or dynamic of our thinking, to create actual things or phenomena. I initially came to the hexagram idea, that is, an orderly sequence of six steps, when I was creating clusters of words that appeared to "hang together somehow." Here is an extract from my lecture notes published in a Handbook for my students in 1978 (three years before I found out about the Writings of Swedenborg) and can be found on the Web here:
It's clear from the above that I had an insight regarding the relationship between consciousness, semantic organization, and discourse. I saw that discourse (or dialog or composition) by an individual was the outcome of prior inner processes that were rational and cultural so that we shared them within a population. This became in my mind the basis for coming up with the notion of "genetic culture" (see tabulation of discoveries above). I believed that we can discover the mental genotypes of the human race by this kind of "ethno-semantics." I also thought of ways to describe "discourse thinking" in terms of formal rules (algebraic or geometric) that specified the permissible combinations of hexagrammatic elements. These combinatorial rules were logical and involved the traditional (Aristotelian) idea that argument=nominal + complement. I recognized that discourse or dialog depends on invisible (Light Trigram--Descending Pathway) and visible elements (Dark Trigram--Ascending Pathway, as shown above in matrix 18). The invisible elements I called "pre-topical" and the visible "topical." Between the two lay the double line which I identified as the source of the contention point in discourse and in discourse thinking. It answered the question: What's the point in saying this or thinking this?
Now I can recognize the overlap between the pre-topical Light Trigram and the Descending Pathway of degrees of consciousness as outlined in the various matrices in Parts 1 and 2 of this article, and also the topical Dark Trigram and the Ascending Pathway. It's quite remarkable to me that the "double line" between the trigrams occupied my mind in mysterious ways. I saw it as a deep chasm in our semantic system and called it the origin of contention points, that is, the motive for speaking and thinking anything. Now I can see from the Writings that this double line is called the Inversion and is described in great detail in Arcana Coelestia where the inner sense is given for the migrations and encounters of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob detailed in Genesis. This is the basis of what I call today "spiritual geography." Most of the Arcana Coelestia is a handbook for consciousness raising detailing the step by step recursive series of regeneration as we become spiritual and full human beings. It turns out that the hexagrammatic and enneadic systems in ethnosemantics provides us with a methodology for drawing spiritual maps of the human mind. It is a methodology for spiritual geography, or the science of regeneration and human growth in consciousness.
The Writings describe the Descending Pathway (Zones 1 through 9 in the matrices in Parts 1 and 2) as involving the immediate (unconscious) influx of Divine Good into our sensuous consciousness, and this good unites itself with the Divine truth that enters through efflux from outside our senses, that is, through the Word and Doctrine based on the Word. But the Ascending Pathway (Zones 10 through 18 in the matrices in Parts 1 and 2) is described as involving mediate (conscious) influx of Divine Truth into our rational consciousness. When we advance in regeneration and our rational consciousness develops, it does so within the sensuous consciousness that was prepared for it through the consummation of the Descending Pathway. This uniting of the sensual and rational consciousness is called the Marriage of Good and Truth. This marriage of good and truth is the basis of all created things, both human and non-human. Every created object or quality, such as a galaxy, molecule, grain of sand, plant seed, or a human feeling, is created into a marriage of good and truth without which no thing can be anything in existence or reality. These are the two fundamental issues when considering any created thing or object:
The growth of every individual's consciousness is a process under Divine management called "regeneration." This process is the marriage of good and truth within us, a marriage the Writings call the church--not capitalized to distinguish it from the Church, which refers to civilization or age, viewed historically or in evolution. The chief mechanism by which regeneration proceeds is through an appropriate series of temptations. These are situations and dilemmas in our daily living that challenges us by putting us in the very middle of a spiritual battle going on between evil spirits and good spirits. This vertical community is a constant environment for our mind without which the mind quickly sinks into its lowest corporeal state and is there isolated from higher states--this is called the hells. So our vertical community ensures that we can maintain the growth of the mind by placing into our sensuous consciousness the content of the temptation. On the one side, from below, we feel the tug of war downward to our selfish and egocentric love of self and the world; on the other side, from above, we feel the tug of war upward to our conscience and altruistic motivations. We are poised between the two and kept in balance in a delicate and precise manner by the Lord. Upon the outcome of our free choice hangs our fate in the afterlife--whether it is to be in hell or in heaven. If we choose the selfish and the worldly, our mind is tied closer to the hells. If we choose according to the truth we know, thus according to uses and love of neighbor, we are tied closer to the heavens. And this repeats itself many thousands of times during the few decades in our life in the body.
To help us gain victory in temptations every individual is given conscious truth in the Ascending Pathway of rational consciousness, as frequently explained. This conscious truth, so vital for our development and immortal fate, is called the Doctrine of the Church. The Word or Sacred Scripture in all religions, is the source of this Doctrine. This understanding of Divine things, called the Doctrine of the Church, is something we need to acquire, develop, care for. Though we can attempt to learn other people's Doctrinal insights--their Doctrine of the Church, it only benefits us to the extent that what we understand is genuine, not deluded by self-intelligence. Whatever genuine Doctrine we extract from the Word remains with us and forms our spiritual environment and fate forever. But the Doctrine is genuine only to the extent that we live our life accordingly. We can read the literal statements expressing the insights and enlightenments of others but we cannot understand what they are referring to until we see the Doctrinal things in our very own mind and life. Doctrine can only be acquired through the orderly progression of our consciousness, as portrayed in the matrices discussed in this article. To help us in this process of Doctrine acquisition, the Word portrays the travels and adventures of the characters that form the subject matter of Genesis (chapter 12 onward). I will share the various spiritual geography maps that I have created, based on the explanations of these travels and adventures given in the Writings of Swedenborg. Also, the maps created by Ian Thompson will also be discussed.
The above chart (matrix 19) shows the components and orderly steps of regeneration in relation to degrees of consciousness, age periods, and hexagrammatic color code. It demonstrates the exact relations between my pre-Swedenborgian discoveries in ethnosemantics and discourse analysis (see tabulation of discoveries above ), and the Swedenborgian system of degrees I encountered later when first reading the Writings. The embedded recursiveness of the growth of the mind at all levels and periods is clearly portrayed by the visual representations.
As I started reading the Writings I came across some consistent themes, each one a remarkable and wonderful scientific revelation. If I arrange them in a logical sequence in my mind, I would name first, the idea of "substantive dualism." The structure of the universe is dual: the spiritual world is "within" the physical world--but not in space. Rather, the two worlds are linked by correspondence. Both worlds--the physical planets when they are inhabited, and the spiritual world, have a sun that supplies the materials in the case of the physical sun) or the substances (in the case of the spiritual Sun) from which all things are constructed on the planets and lands. So the big news here is the distinction our consciousness has to make about matter and substance. Substance from the spiritual Sun acts and matter from the physical sun reacts. Another way of thinking this is that phenomena in the spiritual world (made of substance) is the cause ("acts on") of phenomena in the physical world ("is acted upon" or "reacts"). All causes originate and exist in the spiritual world, and these control or cause all corresponding phenomena in the physical world. For example, if we observe the various instinctual physical behaviors of animals, our mind can formulate an idea about the spiritual causes of each behavior. The Writings reveal thousands and hundreds of thousands such correspondences, so that by studying them, we can begin to recognize them in our mind and in our regeneration. Wait! How did I get from spiritual-physical correspondences to the mind and regeneration??
That's the second consistent theme I came across as I read the Writings and it is perhaps the scientific revelation that amazed me to the extreme. That's the idea that the spiritual world and the mind overlap. In other words the mind is the spirit and the spirit lives in the spiritual world. And the spiritual world is not existent in place and time like the physical world where our body is. This was the answer to the mind-body conundrum that bedevils every generation of psychologists and philosophers since Aristotle. By Jove, I think I've got it--to quote a well known 20th century song in the English world. Finally I understood what I've been searching for in vain all these years. We are dual citizens. Our body exists in the physical world while our mind exists in the spiritual world. The two are connected by correspondences. These laws of correspondences were known to the ancients and those who were expert at knowing them were called "wise"--thus like a doctor in Philosophy in our days (Ph.D. Degree). No doubt in the future, science, which will be theistic, will require its Ph.Ds. to be familiar with the "science of correspondences" no less than we require them today to be familiar with the science of mathematics.
That the mind overlaps with the spiritual world is more than to say that our mind, called "the spirit," lives in the spiritual world. Overlap means that when the spiritual world is described, the mind is also described. This reality is the basis for "spiritual geography." For example, in Swedenborg's numerous travels "in the spirit"--which means he was conscious of what his spirit was experiencing, he visited different societies of spirits. These are the people whose minds were liberated from the connection to the physical body by the death of that body. He watched thousands of people "pass on" or pass into the spiritual world which occurs a few hours after death, upon which one awakens consciously within one's spiritual body. The mind or spirit which was connected to the physical body, was now free to roam in its own mental body called the spiritual body. This spiritual body is immortal and indestructible because it is made of substances, unlike the physical body which is made of temporary matter. We do not get into this direct sensuous consciousness in the spirit until the connection with the body is fully broken, a process that takes approximately 30 hours. What was special in the case of Swedenborg is that he was given the ability to be conscious in the spirit while still connected to the physical body--and this for 27 years. The purpose of this special event, which Swedenborg called the greatest miracle in the history of the world, was to allow him to be the scientific revelator of the Second Advent.
Swedenborg described three levels of societies he encountered in the spiritual world. He called these the First Heaven, the Second Heaven, and the Third Heaven. The highest heavenly societies or the Third Heaven, were inhabited by people who on earth had their consciousness opened to the interior celestial degree. The middle heavenly societies or the Second Heaven, were inhabited by people who on earth had their consciousness opened to the interior spiritual degree. The lowest heavenly societies or the First Heaven, were inhabited by people who on earth had their consciousness opened to the interior natural degree. These three heavens had their corresponding hells. The intermediate "space" between the lowest heaven and the first of the hells ("Lower earth" in the spiritual world) is called the spiritual world. This organization by degrees of the spiritual world overlaps with the organization by degrees of the mental world, or mind (spirit). This is the basis for the method of spiritual geography in theistic psychology. Matrix 12 in part 1 discusses spiritual geography and depicts the four "directions" in the spiritual world and the character of consciousness of the inhabitants in each region. So the human mind is organized in levels of height and our life on earth in the physical body determines the level to which our consciousness will rise. Thereafter, our life in eternity is an outcome of the height we achieved. Our conscious life, or self, experiences the phenomena at the level that is active in our mind. The inhabitants of the highest level of the mind were called celestial and their power and happiness so exceeded the inhabitants of the second level (spiritual), that the highest of the spiritual could not comprehend a single thought or idea from the lowest of the third level. Moreover, a single experience as actually felt and sensed by the lowest of the celestial individual, would annihilate the highest and best of the spiritual inhabitants, like our body would be annihilated if brought close to the sun.
Similarly, the lowest of the spiritual inhabitants were so vastly superior to the highest of the inhabitants in the natural heaven (first), that the inhabitants of the natural heaven cannot comprehend a single idea of the inhabitants of the spiritual heaven. Such is the amazing difference in our life at different levels of our consciousness. We are not fully human until we reach the interior or rational celestial consciousness. Spiritual geography is the science of drawing maps of the mind for the purpose of understanding and cooperating with our regeneration. Regeneration is the process by which our consciousness is opened to higher degrees while we are in the physical body. After we leave the physical body we can no longer be transferred to a higher degree than what our mind (or spirit) has been prepared for. This is why it is so crucial that we comprehend the process of how regeneration takes place, so that we may cooperate. This cooperation is the reciprocal conjunction with God, which is what gives us eternal life in the heavens. As I read these themes in the Writings I was striving to acquire them as my own knowledge so that I can think from this knowledge. Instead of thinking from materialistic knowledge (e.g., atheistic psychology that gave me the Ph.D. degree), I now started thinking from substantive knowledge, that is, knowledge from scientific revelations given by God to humankind through a designated or specially prepared revelator. I therefore started keeping track of the details by drawing spiritual geography maps that my wife Dr. Diane Nahl and I started calling "the ennead matrix." We found this word in the dictionary and it means a grid or matrix of nine elements or zones. Here is the most basic ennead matrix we conceptualized:
The vertical dimension consists of the three degrees of the mind, and the horizontal dimension consists of the three organs of the mind called in the Writings: the will, the understanding, and the sensory. Diane and I used the modern social and behavioral terms: "affective" for the organ of the will; "cognitive" for the organ of the understanding; and "sensorimotor" for the organ of the sensory. The three degrees we translated in our published articles as "Level 3" as the most interior in "depth" or "internalization; "Level2" was of an intermediate depth, and "Level 1" was the most external. For example, in one article we identified the three levels with Kelman's description of "the internalization of obedience." He defined level 1 obedience as not internalized but due to fear from environmental or social punishment. When there is no surveillance, obedience stops. Level 2 obedience is more internalized and he called that "compliance" due to voluntary agreement or strategy. Even without surveillance, we still obey because we agree with it. Level 3 obedience is the most internalized since it is based on principles we uphold that are higher than ourselves. Even if we rather not obey in some situations, and would not at levels 1 and 3 (like in temptations and seductions), we still obey at level 3 out of inner higher principle. So we saw the clear relation between how the Writings describe the celestial character and how Kelman described the psychological levels of obedience. And similarly with other psychological levels discussed by Ericsson, Kohlberg, and others. So we were successful in applying the idea of "internalization" or "depth of consciousness" or "development of expertise" in many areas of daily living. You can explore these applications in Diane's publications and mine that are available on the Web. But here are some examples I reproduce here:
Here is another illustration of how we used the ennead matrix in our published articles in the atheistic literature:
And now for some illustrations on how we used the ennead matrix as applied to knowledges from the literal of the Writings of Swedenborg. A sequence of such diagrams based on Swedenborg's analyses of the Bible passages in Genesis can be viewed in this article on religious behaviorism. The clearest examples can be found in this article on "the dimensions of the mind" from which I will reproduce these examples. The three concentric circles style of representing "trigrams" is called graphic methodology (see tabulation of discoveries above).
The graphic methodology in spiritual geography allows us to study and consider separate elements of the ennead matrix. Above is a simple trigram. Below is an ennead matrix arranged in three trigrams:
The advantage of the graphic method is that it presents a rational schema in a visual sensuous image. It shows in a sensuous way how the elements or organs of the mind are arranged "within" each other so that the outermost is the lowest and contains the intermediate and inmost as a protective covering or containant. The celestial mind or degree is "within" the spiritual, and this "within" the natural. The three minds or degrees of consciousness are organic constructions that tend to maintain a certain form by creation. For instance, in the above ennead diagram, arranged graphically, "pleasure" is portrayed in the sensorimotor domain of the natural mind (S1). Within this mental event (pleasure) is contained at a higher degree and through correspondence, the mental event of "intellectual delight" which is portrayed in the sensorimotor domain of the spiritual mind (S2). And within this is portrayed the mental event of "happiness" in the sensorimotor domain of the celestial mind (S3). So in order to understand the workings of the mind, we need to think of three mental events, one within the other: pleasure (outmost), intellectual delight (intermediate), and happiness (inmost). In terms of actual sequence, the inmost is the origin and occurs first; then the intermediate occurs and acts as a cause; finally, the outermost occurs and acts as an effect. Pleasure is thus really and fully pleasure, only when it is the third step in a series starting with happiness in the affective mind (inmost) externalizing by correspondence to the cognitive mind (intermediate) and resting by correspondence in the sensorimotor mind (outmost). Swedenborg explicitly described this process, for which Diane and I created this diagram (found in this article):
Later I changed the A/B/C designation to A/C/S which was easier to relate to the trigram of Affective/Cognitive/Sensorimotor. From now on I was striving to think, not of single concepts as I was taught in my education, but of "triadic concepts" or semantic trigrams. In the fields where Diane and I were publishing our articles--psychology, education, and information science, it was an entirely new approach. We always insisted on the correct theoretical sequence of any behavior or habit unit: Affective------->Cognitive------>Sensorimotor. Remarkably, when our articles were quoted or referenced in the literature, they were cited for the topic of "affective behavior" and never for the simultaneity of the A/C/S unit. It's as if this idea has not yet entered into the consciousness of atheistic psychology, and so is totally overlooked and not seen, by those who cite our articles. No doubt this powerful concept will become basic and universal when science turns theistic. Even now, cognitive and information science would receive a tremendous boost in effectiveness if scientists were willing to adopt the triadic approach to concepts about human behavior.
In addition, the Writings spoke of an interior and and an exterior of the mind at each level. Here is how I tried to depict this relationship:
Note that there is an inherent replication in the two dimensions of the ennead matrix. The celestial degree corresponds to the affective; the spiritual degree corresponds to the cognitive; the natural degree corresponds to the sensorimotor. Out of this triadic sequence issues all overt behavior. Note also that the ennead matrix can be doubled to represent its relation to the six degrees and hexagrammatic levels discussed above and throughout this article. In that case it relates to matrix 1 in part 1 which I reproduce again here:
In the chart above (matrix 2), the zones are marked in relation to the external A/C/S units (Zones 1 through 18) and interior A/C/S units (Zones 19 through 36). This is because each of the three domains have an external and an internal zone. For instance, Zone 1 is the external affective of the external celestial, while zone 19 is the interior affective of the external celestial. Every box in the chart is thus marked for two zones. The 36 zones correspond exactly to the 36 zones in matrix 19 above. The zones in matrix 19 and matrix 20 can be identified as follows:
Now we can take a look at Dr. Ian Thompson's formal rendition of the ennead matrix. He doesn't call it the ennead matrix, possibly because he is a physicist and uses a more formal mathematical presentation. At any rate, his independent extraction from the Writings and mine are remarkably similar, demonstrating the methodology of theistic psychology.
Ian calls the affective domain the "interior mind," the cognitive domain he calls the "exterior mind" and the sensorimotor domain he calls the "natural world." These distinctions are used in the Writings where the will is called the interior of the mind while the understanding is referred to as the exterior or external of the mind. The outermost of the mind is the sensory and is called the natural mind in the Writings. Ian calls this the natural world, no doubt because the sensory mind is formed from stimuli from the natural or physical world entering the sensory organs of the body.
Note Ian's notation system: he uses "1" for the affective domain where "ends" or goals exist, "2" for the cognitive domain where "thoughts" exist, and "3" for the sensorimotor domain where "effects" exist. Then, "ends of ends" or "affections for ends" receives a double 1 or 1.1; next, "ends of thoughts" or "affections for thoughts" receives a "1.2" notation, while "ends of effects" or "affections for effects" receives a notation of 1.3. "Thoughts of thoughts" has the notation 2.2 and corresponds to the "cognitive of the external spiritual" which is zone 5 and zone 23 in matrix 20 above. In matrix 19 above, it is called the "external spiritual of the external spiritual" (zone 5) or the "interior spiritual of the external spiritual" (zone 23)--depending on whether we're addressing external thoughts (zone 5) or interior thoughts (zone 23). And so on. Continuing with this notation with one more embedding, Ian has the following chart:
In the above diagram, let's take the item "ends of ends" (1.1) which is the equivalent in my notation of "the affective of the external celestial" (zones 1 and 19 in matrix 20 above), which are also called the "external celestial of the external celestial" (zone 1 in matrix 19) or the "interior celestial of the external celestial" (zone 19 in matrix 19). Ian doesn't portray the distinction between external and interior ends or affections. His system then continues to the third embedding "thoughts of ends of ends" (2.11) which is not portrayed in my diagrams since they only go to two embeddings, so far. Ian's terminology is easier to understand at this level: "thoughts of ends of ends" (2.11) is comprehensible, though difficult, while mine would be more difficult to comprehend: "the cognitive of the affective of the celestial" or, "the cognitive of the celestial of the celestial," or even, "the external spiritual of the external celestial of the external celestial" and "the interior spiritual of the interior celestial of the external celestial, " which is hardly comprehensible. Clearly these pioneering attempts by Ian and me about "matrix thinking" have much groundwork to establish before people can make use of these notations as maps for their regeneration.
These things are not easy to see and my rendition and understanding of Dr. Ian Thompson's charts may not receive the agreement of their author who wrote this in an e-mail message after reading some of the above:
As Ian indicates, "There is much still to discuss," and indeed, this kind of exchange will become typical for theistic psychology in the future. More on this will be said later, no doubt.
The chart below (matrix 22) shows how we can analyze in detail the states and sub-states that we undergo during our regeneration. Since these charts are constructed according to the structure of the mind they can serve as spiritual geography maps to help us keep track of where we are, where we are headed, how much there is still to go and in what direction. Knowing these things about the course and dynamics of our regeneration helps us cumulate the knowledge and make faster gains with a more certain footing. In this case let us use the charts to map out the external spiritual state of regeneration. This is the second phase in the overall series so that you can picture it as the YELLOW chunk or segment from matrix 19 above. In matrix 20 above, this chunk is represented as:
This is the second day of the new creation (Genesis 1:6) and so it refers to the the second degree in the Descending Pathway that we have been calling the CHILDHOOD phase and defined as the EXTERNAL SPIRITUAL of sensuous consciousness. This degree includes Zones 4, 5, 6 for the EXTERNAL A/C/S/ unit and Zones 22, 23, 24 for the INTERNAL A/C/S/ unit (see matrix 20 above). These relations are compacted in the form above since the external and internal A/C/S/ units are combined. We can expand the representation by graphically showing both the external and internal A/C/S/ units for this phase II segment, as in the chart below (matrix 22):
In order to facilitate discussion you need to look at the chart along with the explanations. But since the chart is large, it's more convenient if I reproduce just the segment we want to discuss at each point. First, then:
This is the first segment or chunk of the chart above (matrix 22). Note that it is marked as a YELLOW chunk, which is Phase 2, called CHILDHOOD and is defined as the external spiritual phase of the sensuous consciousness (phase II in the Light Trigram or Descending Pathway). So whatever will be said about this segment of the chart will apply to this external spiritual degree of our overall regeneration (which consists of 6 phases). Now within this childhood phase, or Day Two of our new Creation, there are six phases since all phases are recursive and all sub-phases are also. In this case we have selected the first or INFANCY phase of childhood, symbolized as the WHITE OF YELLOW stage. This is Zone 4 in matrix 20 above. It is the EXTERNAL SPIRITUAL OF THE EXTERNAL CELESTIAL or the Infancy of Childhood. So all that will be said in this analysis will pertain to the infancy of childhood period in our regeneration. Since it is the infancy stage, it is an external celestial degree. So this is the external spiritual phase (childhood overall) of the external celestial period (sub-phase of childhood).
What is this the content of this sub-period in our mind? The childhood phase of regeneration overall (Day Two--YELLOW) is defined in the Writings as the first recognition in our consciousness that there is a God, or at the very least, something supernatural. This childhood phase of our regeneration is the conscious beginning of religion. When we acquire consciousness of God as a sensuous being of power, we begin our life in religion. This is an external spiritual degree (YELLOW) that goes through its series of progressive steps until consummation, and then transfer to the next higher degree (Day 3--GREEN). So the first of these six periods in the childhood phase (YELLOW--Day 2) is the infancy period. This is zone 4, namely, the infancy period of our childhood phase of regeneration. What is the content of this period? It is a collection of ideas and thoughts, as well as feelings and actions that occur during this period. These feelings, thoughts, and actions only take place during this period in all their particulars. The recursive return of this period in subsequent phases will contain different particulars. In this infancy of childhood period, our idea of God and the supernatural is external, both spiritually and celestially, thus a double external as it were. Each of the ideas of this period (infancy of childhood) itself has six stages to step through as it matures and consummates. This is is portrayed in the chart segment immediately above. They are marked as EXTERNAL AFFECTIVE, EXTERNAL COGNITIVE, EXTERNAL SENSORIMOTOR, INTERIOR AFFECTIVE, INTERIOR COGNITIVE, INTERIOR SENSORIMOTOR.
In other words, we are discussing the external and interior A/C/S units in the infancy of childhood in the overall regeneration phases. What are these?
The feelings, thoughts, and actions (A/C/S units) we have in any stage of regeneration are crucial in allowing us to overcome temptations appropriate for that stage of development. It is these feelings, thoughts, and actions (A/C/S units) that are the actual steps of progress. As these feelings, thoughts, and actions (A/C/S units) progress in the prescribed order we gain victory over the temptations and our consciousness is infilled with new and more interior trues. In this analysis, we are focusing on the feelings, thoughts, and actions (A/C/S units) of the infancy of childhood (WHITE OF YELLOW) in the overall regeneration series. We begin our sub-phase with sensuous (external) feelings, thoughts, and actions such as:
And we then progress to rational (interior) feelings, thoughts, and actions, such as:
To summarize this analysis of Day 2 of Creation: We step through a series of feelings, thoughts, and actions that correspond to the infancy phase of our childhood degree (external spiritual--YELLOW). During this infancy phase we gradually progress from external religion (sensuous--Descending Pathway) to internal religion (rational--Ascending Pathway). When we arrive to the sixth phase--that is, meaningful actions motivated by a rational conception of God and feelings of closeness to Him. When this is reached, the infancy stage of childhood is consummated and we are ready to be transferred to the next phase (the childhood phase of childhood or YELLOW OF YELLOW--see matrix 22 immediately above.
The next chart below (matrix 23) maps out the six stages of regeneration as explicated in Swedenborg's Arcana Coelestia Numbers 1 to 72 where he explicates the Creation story in Genesis (Chapter 1). He refers to this progression as "the movements and moments of regeneration" (AC24).
The chart immediately above (matrix 23), maps out the sic major steps of regeneration as detailed in the inner sense of the Creation story in Genesis, Chapter 1. A principle we have from the Writings is that the beginning of any orderly sequence anticipates and encapsulates the whole sequence. And thus, Chapter 1 of Genesis is a summary and abstract of the entire Bible. Indeed, verse 1 of Chapter 1 in Genesis is a summary and encapsulation of the entire Bible in the inner sense: "1. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." In the inner sense, "beginning" means the first state of a sequence and the summary of the rest of the sequence. The reference here is to the sequence of our regeneration. This focuses on the the principal purpose of all Sacred Scripture or revelation, namely, as a guide or handbook for our regeneration process. "God created" stands for the revelation that God is the all in all in our regeneration and that God is the power, the intelligence, and the love that initiates our regeneration and manages it to its successful completion. We are subjects of this Divine activity since the process unfolds within our mind or spirit by means of our thoughts, feelings, and experiences, all of which God guides at every moment and detail and supervises it for our benefit. "Created" stands for the new creation of the individual as a "living soul." This refers to the necessity of our "rebirth in spirit" which is the beginning of regeneration. Rebirth in spirit means the start of a new proprium or self.
This new self is the self that is regenerated as it grows and as the old self is put to sleep, to quiescence, buried to the circumference of our personality, neutralized, rendered unable to function and exercise its hellish influence. The new creation is called "the heavens" and refers to the "internal man", that is, the the degrees of the mind after the Inversion (see charts in this article). This is our rational consciousness. The earlier unregenerate self does not have a rational consciousness and is called "the earth." Parallel to this meaning, "the heavens" also refers to the will or affective organ and "the earth" refers to the understanding or cognitive organ. The expression "heavens and the earth" means the conjunction between the two, that is, the state of health when the "two lives of man"--the will and the understanding, operate together. This is called the marriage of the affective and the cognitive. The pre-regenerate self does not have this marriage as demonstrated by the fact that people know what is good and right (cognitive), yet fail to live accordingly (affective and sensorimotor). The goal of regeneration is to reunite these "two lives" in our consciousness, as in a marriage, that they might act together. This new state of marriage is called "the church." When we begin regeneration our understanding of truth from the literal of the Word and Doctrine (also called "faith") may be highly developed so that we are experts and knowledgeable about spiritual things from Sacred Scripture and Doctrinal teachings. We have faith and religion. But we fail to live up to it and our knowledge and faith in the mind are drawn away by our will which is evil from birth and keeps us tied to the societies of hells.
In summary then, the purpose and focus of Sacred Scripture is to be a guide to our regeneration by God so that we may cooperate with God and do our required share in reuniting the affective and cognitive in our personality. As this is done gradually in six successive stages, we progress by entering deeper and deeper into our consciousness. This process of internal opening is the growth of human consciousness from sensuous to rational. The spiritual geography maps described in this article (Parts 1, 2, and 3), and related articles, are visual and graphic representations of the six stages and their sub-stages. They make explicit in diagram and matrix form what the Sacred Scripture discusses in text form. Hence the graphic maps are extractions from the literal of the Word. As such, they are part of our Doctrine of the Church, part of what the Word says we are required to do in order to understand what it talks about, for "without doctrine, the Word is not understood."
The chart above (matrix 23) summarizes the general characteristics of the six stages of regeneration. These general properties contain all the sub-steps in an embedded recursive sequence. We are able to follow these embeddings up to a point but it's obvious that as we move into the third and fourth embedded units it becomes more and more difficult to comprehend. This difficulty was discussed above in connection with matrix 19 to 23 above, and Dr. Ian Thompson's matrices. For now, let us recapitulate the entire process as portrayed in matrix 23 above. Let's look again at the first segment:
The first stage of regeneration begins with God's words "let there be light" when we look at our life and decide to abandon our life of self-reliance and start a new life in which we consciously and explicitly acknowledge a higher power than ourselves, namely God and the supernatural. This marks the beginning of dualism as a philosophy of life. Henceforth we are going to be conscious of two kinds of information, meaning, or knowledge. One kind from "earth" or the physical world as registered on our sensory organs, and the other kind from "heaven" as given us by revelations in Sacred Scripture and Doctrine from religion based on Sacred Scripture. This is the period of Infancy (WHITE) and is defined as the external celestial degree, which is the first of the three sensuous consciousness degrees (Descending Pathway or Light Trigram--Pre-topical). Each of us has to have this happen in our life at some point. In my own case, this is described in matrix 16 above as the WHITE segment:
The Writings say that God provides for the existence of religion in every nation so that infants and children may be exposed to religion, and thus be introduced to the philosophy of dualism and the acknowledgment of the God and the supernatural. This knowledge may then be set aside by the growing individual and we may act like and believe that we have abandoned dualism in favor of naturalism and materialism, as taught in formal education and its atheistic psychology. But in actuality, as revealed in the Writings, our concept of God acquired in infancy and childhood, "remains." That is, this initial knowledge and idea of God's existence, is tucked away by God and hidden as "remains" in our sub-conscious and unconscious mind. There they remain in a pure form, protected from alteration and distortion by our self-intelligence. God will use these pure and genuine remains in subsequent stages of our regeneration, for without them we cannot return to our celestial consciousness and become a full human being.
The second main stage then succeeds and this is represented in the YELLOW segment of matrix 23 above, which I reproduce here:
The "Second Day of creation" is called the childhood period and is defined as the external spiritual phase of our sensual consciousness (degree II). The beginning of this phase is represented by God's words: "Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters." The "expanse" here referred to is in our mind and its division into two separate structural areas or "waters." The Word uses the expressions "the external man" and the "the internal man" to refer to the developing dualist philosophy in our life ("childhood" phase). Now we acknowledge from principle that there are two realities in the universe, one represented by science and the other by religion. Science is developed seemingly by ourselves as intelligent earth dwellers living in a physical world and making sense of it. But religion is not from ourselves but from God and through God's Word we are given revelations or facts about the supernatural world. We acknowledge that we cannot gather information from the supernatural through our senses, in the way we gather information from the physical world. In my own case, this is described in matrix 16 above as the YELLOW segment:
My childhood stage of regeneration lasted from age 16 to 37. This may be typical for our generation today. Having been educated in Europe and North America my mind was filled with the philosophy of materialism typical of today's world of public education and science. My childhood stage of regeneration seems to have gone into heavier and heavier materialism, so that my dualism receded to the background throughout these years. By the time this phase in my regeneration was ready to be consummated at age 37, I had reached the bottom of my materialistic self-intelligence. I call this my "avatar" phase and is marked by the most advanced of my philosophical and scientific discoveries (my "external man"). But my "internal man" was still tucked away in the sub-conscious remains of infancy. Significantly, it is in this period that I meet the woman who is to become my conjugial partner and soul mate. Of course my materialistic state did not allow me to recognize this consciously, though she told me later that she was given this perception the moment she first met me. It seems to me from memory that my internal man "jumped from joy" when I first saw her, but I did not act on this sense. I sometimes regret that I didn't and fantasize that I should have asked her to marry me right then and there. She says that had I done this, she would have experienced an inner compulsion to agree to marry me at our first encounter. But this didn't happen given my state of regeneration.
The third main stage of regeneration then succeeds and this is represented in the GREEN segment of matrix 23 above, which I reproduce here:
This is the adolescence period of regeneration and is defined as the external natural phase of our sensuous consciousness. This period marks the descent to the bottom of our dualist philosophy of life and religion. In the previous stage (YELLOW) we divided what's from Caesar and what's from God. We developed our secular knowledge through materialism but not our religious knowledge which remained dormant. But now in the beginning of this third stage (GREEN) we experience a religious awakening and we are moved to re-focus and re-emphasize the religion we left behind in earlier years. But this awakening of spiritual sentiments is still in sensuous or pre-rational phase. We see spirituality or religion in terms of external ideas: worship, ritual, tithing, doing good works. Our faith or spirituality is identified not with what is inside of us, but what we know about it. We are eager for new spiritual knowledge, new religious commitments. The ritual becomes the salvation. Our faith is a Sunday part-time activity. It is our Church membership that is saving us, not how we manage to live our life of love and charity. Charity and love we interpret as not what we feel inside but what we accomplish outside. We do not yet see that the two must be concordant. This is the religion and spirituality of "the external man" while the "internal man" is still only the old unregenerate will tied to self-intelligence and hell, motivated by self-interest.
In my own case, this stage of regeneration is described in matrix 16 above as the GREEN segment:
This phase began for me with a state of terrible vastation. My "avatar" state of mind at the consummation of the previous phase (YELLOW) left me with an inner void into which I seemed to myself to sink deeper, and the more I sank the more I felt terrible, panicked, and hopeless. I felt I had reached my pinnacle and have experienced everything. The world had nothing to offer me anymore. I had no reason left to continue in this physical life. I fantasized spiritual escape but did not know whereto. I felt an inner urge to return to what I had left behind in my infancy stage. Curiously, what I had left from my education and socialization was the ritual and the chant and the prayer books. I did not feel like I wanted to return to organized religion--it was too inconvenient to join a public life of religion in company with others whom I saw as beneath me in intellectual interest and development. There was no hope for communication with my co-religionists. And so I turned inward being a religion to myself. I studied the Old Testament through the interpretations of Jewish writers and scholars. Then, I did not know why or whence, I was moved to read the "forbidden" New Testament. Christianity was a fearful word for a Jewish boy raised in Rumania at the start of the second world war. I was forbidden to read the New Testament and feared to do so. And yet, now I did. And I recall the amazement that came upon me when I realized, at age 42, that the Christian religion is but a continuation of the Jewish religion. At last I understood that the expression "Judaeo-Christian" --that I bandied about along with others, really meant something more than history, that it was an inner connection. I remember trying to convince my mother to come to a Sunday service on account of the fact that "it's the same religion, you'll see." Of course she could not see it at all and had no intention of seeing it.
This initial phase lasted about three years. During this time I acted like a Jewish Evangelist, feeling superior to both Christians and Jews since I was both. I was very active in converting my two children. My son Rex who was reaching the age of 13 at this point (1980) was made to write his Bar Mitzvah thesis on the Acts of the Apostles, and at our Friday evening Sabbath rituals both he and my daughter Joy were made to discuss New Testament passages. I started drawing crosses on my notes as a signature feature and I said a devout prayer every time we passed a Church or Jewish temple. I saw crosses everywhere as a sign of the Lord--window bars, the moon through a screen door, telephone poles, and so on. And yet, I had not become a Christian yet. Diane was telling me that I'm not a Christian until I understand and practice repentance. This, my inner man refused to do, and I was still in a sensual phase of self-intelligence, proud and stubborn and selfish and self-centered. Meritorious to the max. Then, I cross the Inversion point and find myself on the other side of it.
The third main stage of regeneration that then succeeds represented in the GREEN segment of matrix 23 above, which I reproduce here:
This is the young adulthood stage of regeneration and is defined as the interior natural. Now for the very first time we begin to experience rational consciousness. It is "faith vivified by love" (AC 30) which was not possible before in the Descending Pathway of sensual consciousness. Before this, it's as if the Incarnation had not happened in our consciousness. Though we knew of this concept, though we may have been an expert in this topic, yet we were able to see nothing but abstractions. This is because sensual consciousness sees nothing of the rational. As soon as the rational is presented to view, it sees nothing but abstractions. And to sensual consciousness abstractions are less real or not quite real. Abstractions don't really exist as tangible things exist, etc. Similarly about the idea of God. Before the Inversion, our idea of God is sensuous. In the infancy stage of our regeneration we rely on psychic powers given for an instant, that we may have a moving or transporting experience of God. This is the exterior celestial degree and we are connected to the angels (see matrix 7 in part 2). The Lord gives us this tangible experience--a light, a vision, a sacred object, a miracle, a new vision or feeling--so that we may be initiated into the circuit of regeneration. But this quickly vanishes into a memory and after that we either chase that memory with obsession and are arrested in development, or we obediently go onward to the next degree of consciousness. Eventually it is given to us to return to the celestial perceptions, but this time through the interior rational in old age (see the diagram in matrix 15 above).
The beginning phases of this new degree of consciousness (BLUE--interior natural) is not fully rational. There will be six sub-stages of this degree to go through and the infancy sub-stage (WHITE) is but the first in order. Only in the sixth-sub-stage (BLACK) do we get to a fully rational consciousness, and this allows us to cross into the interior spiritual consciousness (BROWN). Our biggest stumbling-block in this interior natural degree (BLUE) is our holding on strong to the sensuous impression that we act from ourselves. We know from the Word that we do not, but this is vague in our mind in this state of consciousness. We are carried away by the sensuousness of the experience that we are acting from ourselves and that God only oversees the process and may intervene from time to time, but otherwise things run on their own, and on we act on our own, we think our thoughts on our own, and we follow this or another inclination on our own. Thus, we are bedeviled by our proprium! But when we arrive into the sixth sub-phase, as just indicated, we reach rational consciousness--not fully but sufficiently to make a huge difference.
This means that we are able to set appearances aside in our experience. This is not abstracting things into something less real or actual, as before. This is gaining a new perceptual experience not there before, or there only in an abstract form. This is not just the feeling of conviction and certainty since both of these occur falsely and deceptively in the Descending Pathway of sensual consciousness. This is a new experiential reality, rational reality. This is a sensory taste in the rational, not the natural. This is not a conviction or certainty based on abstractions, persuasions, and imaginary experiences. This is a certainty based on rational perception. We see interior truths in our understanding. We see them in our cognitive mind. We read in the literal that "wisdom is to recognize truth when presented" and we experience what this means. It has a referent within ourselves, thus, meaning. And only then does it have meaning rather than abstraction.
This is the interior natural degree (BLUE), the first taste of spiritual reality in our regeneration. To Christians, this is the First Advent. Prior to this our consciousness and understanding of our Christian-ness, what we call the First Advent or the Incarnation, was nominal, by membership. But now the First Advent is reborn in a rational consciousness truth.
In my own case, this stage of regeneration is described in matrix 16 above as the BLUE segment:
This is my salvation at age 43. When my inner preparation and readiness was matured in the fullness of the previous degree prior to Inversion, the external biographical events in my life responded by correspondence. My salvation was thus marked by my Baptism by a Christian minister (it "happened" to be an Episcopal Church on our block where we lived at that time. The Baptism was merely an external effect or consequence of the internal preparations, and so the internal man and the external now began to correspond to each other. The Writings explain that this is accomplished by the Lord introducing the individual into the vertical community with inhabitants of the Christians Heavens. This change allows for a new consciousness and the truths we now see are deeper and higher than the ones we saw before. This progression allows the Lord to show more of our deeper evils which before had to be kept hidden that we may not fall into them forever by kissing them and embracing them--such is our hereditary inclination and obsession. With the new more interior truths in our possession (BLUE--interior spiritual) we can do battle against deeper hells than before, thus allowing the Lord to disconnect us from them.
The six sub-stages of this Ascending Pathway in my regeneration are not shown in this matrix (but perhaps later as I continue my research). But I can say in general that the initial sub-stages (WHITE OF BLUE, YELLOW OF BLUE, GREEN OF BLUE), "the two luminaries" in my mind were not united but growing into such a state. My faith, which now was of rational philosophy rather than abstract, ascended to the heights when I was studying and writing, but catapulted to the previous platform the rest of my day in the rest of my activities on the daily round. My faith was not yet governed and united to love from heaven and the Lord. My greatest delight was still in finding truths rather than in acting them out from love. Though I knew that faith is the "lesser luminary" I lived as if it was the "greater luminary." Thus my faith was not true faith and my rationality was not true rational consciousness but mixed with abstractions from my "external man." I was already partly BLUE but also still partly GREEN. I still believed that I'm obedient to my faith from myself and not from the Lord. I still saw the Lord outside of myself as the Divine and what I saw inside myself was me, not the Divine. Thus I had independent powers still that I claimed to be mine rather then the Lord's. This was the mixed in GREEN--the sensual consciousness hanging in there thanks to my hanging on to them from hereditary loves I was still unwilling to give up.
When these sensual sub-stages of my interior natural degree (BLUE) were consummated and I reached the BLUE OF BLUE phase following the sub-stage Inversion, I was brought into the presence of the Lord in His Second Advent. Diane and I were browsing our university library shelves in the Bible commentary section when we came across the books of Swedenborg, and as we started reading that same evening, the Lord made His Second Advent in our mind. There followed the three Ascending sub-stages: BLUE OF BLUE, BROWN OF BLUE, AND BLACK OF BLUE (not shown in the tables regarding my own case). In our effort to comprehend rationally the literal of the Writings we came up with the ennead matrix as a spiritual geography map of regeneration. But this was not yet the full and true rational (BLACK--interior celestial). I acknowledged the literal of the Writings, but yet its inner sense. I acknowledged that the Writings were the Word, but they seemed to threat the Old Testament and the New Testament as the Word. Only here and there, in a remark or inscription, do we find the actual explicit assertion that the Writings are the Word or that the Writings consider themselves as the Word. In 99 percent of the cases where the Writings discuss the Word, either the OT or the NT is directly addressed. Hence my mind did not fully believe that the Writings were the Word in equal sense as the OT and the NT. A symbol or sign of this ignorance was the fact that the expression "Third Testament" never came into my consciousness until the next degree (BROWN).
Let's now look at the characteristics of Day Five in the creation story as discussed in the Writings (AC 41). Here is the fifth main stage of regeneration that succeeds the BLUE segment of matrix 23 above: The BROWN segment:
Now for the first time we are called "living soul" and we are commanded to "be fruitful and multiply." For the first time we act from love through faith, hence from the Lord. Before this we acted from love of self-intelligence because to some extent our relation to the Lord in His Second Advent was still based on the literal of the Writings--and thus we saw the Divine Human outside of ourselves in the literal. He came to us as the literal of the Writings and this comes into us from the external senses, and this takes part in what is our own, and hell adheres to it still. We are unwilling to let go of the idea that the literal of the Writings is something rational in itself that we acquire and develop by our own effort and intellect, each according to our individual style and approach. Hence many of our deepest contacts with the hells lie still hidden and the Lord is not able to bring these to our awareness for we would not resist them, and thus we would perish and not go on to become fully human, fully rational (BLACK--Day Six).
In my own case, this stage of regeneration is described in matrix 16 above as the BROWN segment looks like this:
About two years after I "found" the Writings (or they found me!), we received an unexpected gift in the mail from Philip Odhner and his wife Beryl. It contained the three volumes of De Hemelsche Leer. As soon as I began to read it, I was transferred from the interior natural (BLUE) to the interior spiritual (BROWN). Reading and becoming an "expert" in the Writings and making discoveries and inventions from the Writings, were not sufficient to bring my interior natural (BLUE) degree of consciousness to its full consummation. This is because my consciousness was held back in the literal. I could lecture about what the Writings said about the Doctrine of the Church, but I knew nothing what it actually referred to. I thought the Doctrine of the Church was the literal of the Writings even though it said that the Doctrine must be extracted from the literal of the Word. But when read this, I interpreted "the Word" as referring to the OT and NT. But as soon as my awareness was brought to the ideas in the Hemelsche Leer, I was liberated from the interior natural degree and I was catapulted into the interior spiritual degree (BROWN), like a butterfly that crawled out of its wormy shell and started flying about freely in the air.
In my later sub-stages of the interior spiritual (BLUE OF BROWN, BROWN OF BROWN, BLACK OF BROWN--thus the Ascending Pathway) my rational consciousness brought forth the Doctrine of the Wife. Now for the first time I was able to endure interior spiritual temptations and thus I began my true reformation as a husband--to the great relief of my wife Diane. I had a deep insight that I recorded in September 1993 that I should take care to make my proposals justifiable and comprehensible on their own, as one would expect of any scientific work. Until then I had been content in reporting what Swedenborg wrote, as if this was sufficient for others to run to the Writings for more. I wrote several lengthy articles or essays that I collected together under the title of Swedenborg Glossary and began to see it in the perspective of theistic psychology. I was 60 years old and was apparently ready to transfer to the last degree.
Let's look at the characteristics of Day Six in the creation story as discussed in the Writings (AC 48). Here is the sixth main stage of regeneration that succeeds the BROWN segment of matrix 23 above: The BLACK segment:
This is the last stage of regeneration. Our affective and cognitive are now united into a single living human person, into a marriage union ("male and female He created them.") Now for the first time God can say "Let us make man in our image and likeness." In the previous degree of the spiritual rational (BROWN), we are called an "image" of God, a "friend of the Lord" and "sons of light." But in this interior celestial degree (BLACK) we are called a "likeness" of God" and "sons of God" and even "loves" (AC 51). The previous five Days of Creation are called "good" by God but Day Six is called "very good." In the previous five degrees of consciousness "dominion proceeds from the external man to the internal" while now "dominion proceeds from the internal man to the external" (AC 52). In the interior celestial degree we are willingly and perceptibly ruled by angels and the Lord. The vertical community has now become fully rational, fully real. It exerts a constant presence. None of our thoughts and feelings are absent from this conscious awareness. Our feelings are no longer private; our thoughts are no longer private; and none of our actions are private. We stand and walk in the presence of the angels and in the presence of God as the Holy Spirit. Our love and our faith are fully united and love is the primary while faith is its obedient servant. We act from love through faith, thus from the Lord and in the Lord. This degree is the Crown of degrees and is never consummated. It continues to grow in endless circuits of which we know nothing about now and here. The angels of the Third Heaven are in this degree and Swedenborg called their consciousness and knowledge "ineffable" and "inexpressible" as well as "unbelievable."
In my own case, this stage of regeneration is described in matrix 16 above as the BLACK segment looks like this:
At the point of this writhing in March-April 2001, I am still in the sub-stages of the Descending Pathway (WHITE OF BLACK, YELLOW OF BLACK, GREEN OF BLACK). I do not know what lies ahead in the Topical sub-stages of rational consciousness--the Ascending Pathway of BLUE OF BLACK, BROWN OF BLACK, AND BLACK OF BLACK. No doubt this will be made clearer to me in the future that lies ahead. Thanks be to God!
In March and April of this year (2001) I produced a new set of charts that appear in this file (Part 3 of De Hemelsche Leer Article), and in the two that follow this one: spiritual geography--part 2 and spiritual genes of consciousness. During this fertile period I was communicating with Dr. Ian Thompson who read the new charts I was making on a daily basis as I was uploading the latest paragraphs several times a day while working on the documents (see poem above). Yesterday, on May 1, 2001, I saw something I've never seen before about these charts, yet it is totally obvious once it is seen or pointed out. Clearly my perception had been blinded to it for 26 years. This astonishing experience led me to understand something deeper about the idea of spiritual blindness. This is an important methodological issue in theistic psychology.
Spiritual blindness is the inability to see the obvious. There is a universal law of consciousness, that states: We can only see within our allotted sphere. Our spirit-body can only see on the outside of itself that which is representative of its inside. For instance, Swedenborg was present in an assembly where an angel stood on front stage, holding a paper on which there was writing. Most of those present could not see the angel standing there because they were persuaded of falsities that contradicted the truths written on the paper. But after these departed, a few that were left said they could see the angel holding the paper, and they could also read the writing on it. On many other occasions Swedenborg witnessed newly arrived spirits, called novitiate spirits, and wandering spirits, follow roads and paths that opened to them that only they could see who were guided to their destination by the Divine laws actuating their fate.
In the Writings we are told that the Cherubim represent this spiritual blindness brought on by the inexorable law of the Divine. All three Testaments refer to this law of the Divine Providence that sees to it that we are protected from injuring our internal mind. Spiritual blindness is brought on whenever we need to be protected from discovering some interior truth, lest we get irreparably injured spiritually. This would mean that we destroy our capacity to be regenerated. In the Word this is called the "crime against the Holy Spirit that cannot be forgiven." When we acquire an interior rational truth and then misuse it by allowing our proprium to own it, then we injure our consciousness irreparably so that we cannot be saved. Instead, we are united forever to those in the hells who are called corporeal spirits because they dwell forever in corporeal sensuous consciousness separated from any rational within it.
I was obviously protected from a crucial interior truth in the charts I started creating 26 years ago when I started creating the hexagrammatic color coded charts in 1975 (see "ethnosemantics" in list of discoveries above). When I started reading the Writings in 1981 I abandoned ethnosemantics and focused exclusively on the enneadic charts that I saw represented everywhere in the Writings. An instance of one of the many ennead from that period is given above in the library matrix.
In this new period beginning with March 2001 I was lead to use the "abandoned" hexagrammatic system again by lining it up with the six degrees of the mind and the six days of regeneration in Genesis that correspond to the six periods of an individual's biography or to the six major steps in any progression, animate or inanimate. The new chart is discussed above (matrix 1), but I reproduce it here:
This chart is an advance over previous enneads because it shows that each [A/C/S] unit occurs at all six levels, degrees, or periods. This was the first chart that had the power to be a map of the regenerating mind. The next step that came quickly, was to line up the six days of creation with the hexagram of colors, as was done in this diagram discussed above as matrix 18:
It is noteworthy that in all these years I had not been able to justify or confirm in my mind that the color hexagram fits the six days of creation or regeneration. Even after drawing several more diagrams and charts I still could not see how the [WHITE,YELLOW,GREEN] trigram or segment was related to the [BLUE,BROWN, BLACK] segment other than they were successive steps of development of things in the universe. This much I could see having with me the feeling of "discovering" the progression in 1975 and what each step meant semantically or culturally in consciousness. In this latest period I was able to see that what I used to call "the dark trigram" ([BLUE,BROWN, BLACK]) is the ascending path of rational consciousness, while "the light trigram" ([WHITE,YELLOW,GREEN]) was the descending path in regeneration.
The latest diagrams which appear in spiritual geography--part 2 and spiritual genes of consciousness, explicitly represent rational consciousness within sensuous consciousness--this was a new idea I had not clearly seen before. This should have set me up to see the obvious--that the dark trigram IS WITHIN the light trigram, since the dark trigram=rational consciousness and the light trigram=sensuous consciousness. And yet for weeks I was barred to see this. Here are examples: diagram 1 in spiritual geography--part 2:
Here in the diagram above you can see that my conception sees the three descending steps and the three ascending steps, but there is no explicit evidence yet to show that the ascending steps are WITHIN the descending. This concept is however explicitly shown a few diagrams later, as in this chart of the same period:
This clearly shows that I'm thinking of the rational within the sensuous consciousness, yet I still don't see that the dark trigram is within the light trigram in the hexagram of consciousness. I still see it as a progression and succession of six steps in a line up.
Here is the chart where I came the closest, so close, yet not seeing it:
At last, on May 1, 2001, while meditating in my yoga exercises before retiring for sleep, the obvious hit me and the spiritual blindness that lasted 26 years was suddenly healed. I immediately produced this diagram:
Now for the first time I could see that the color hexagram is ordered one within the other. The "dark trigram" is rational consciousness (three ascending steps) within the "light trigram" which is sensuous consciousness. Until now I saw them as lined up, one on each side of the inversion, as in this diagram:
The new element in these two diagrams is whether the progression of the six degrees is portrayed as a sequence of six steps, or whether they are portrayed as within each other: the last three within the first three.
Thus I was unable to see the obvious, namely, that each ascending rational step was a seed implanted into its corresponding descending sensuous step. For instance, the Inversion was not a movement from GREEN to BLUE, but a birthing of the BLUE within the GREEN. I had always pictured it as a sequential movement. This is a reminder that these charts represent organic growth, rather than "movement."
Clearly then I did have a spiritual blindness and now it was healed, or the blindness was lifted. Due to the astonishing feeling that accompanies this new realization it is no doubt significant in content and I will try to research it, if insights are given me in the ensuing months and years. In other words, Why did I have this blindness? Since it is related to the Law of the Cherubim, this kind of spiritual blindness affects all researchers in theistic psychology. Our regeneration not only progresses within strict sequences, but individual differences exist in relation to all of us, and these differences have not been reflected at the level of the charts so far presented. I think the work of Ian Thompson and Abie Venter may be taking us in that direction.
What was hidden from me? What was the nature of the information? It was the construction "BLACK consciousness within WHITE consciousness" or, "BLUE consciousness within GREEN consciousness." One can also say "Old Age within Infancy" or, "young adulthood within adolescence." It's interesting to think that old age is implanted into infancy, adulthood is implanted into childhood, and young adulthood is implanted into adolescence. Infancy by itself is called in the Writings the period of "innocence of ignorance" but old age implanted in infancy is called the period of "the innocence of wisdom." The spiritual angels that further the formation of our sensuous cognitive mind in childhood are back in adulthood but now they further our rational cognitive mind within the sensuous. The spiritual truths we first obtained in our external cognitive mind during childhood are now vivified from within by their rational meaning. The natural angels that furthered our sensuous sensorimotor mind in adolescence, are back in young adulthood in the internal cognitive mind that develops within the external cognitive mind.
Why is it significant to know and consider spatio-temporal descriptions of spiritual genes in the organic mind?
One important reason is that truths are arranged in collections, packs, and taxonomic hierarchies, recursively networked with each other to allow particular communication patterns that reflect the particular unique characteristics of each individual. There are general and universal laws that shape the growth and accumulation of these networked conglomerations of affections in the will (A), cognitions in the understanding (C), and sensations in the sensorimotor mind (S). In order for us to grow in consciousness we need to learn to navigate our mind through this maze created by the truths and falsities, the good and evil affections we have inherited and those we have acquired by ourselves. In the spiritual world, that is, in the mind, the outmost component of those networked elements take on natural appearances. So much is this the case that many there are who live in the spiritual world (afterlife) and deny they are in the afterlife, being delusionally persuaded that they are on some unknown island or place on earth. They are those who have not brought with them any rational consciousness so that it is impossible for them to think or understand that the spiritual world is not earth. But this would not be the case if the outmost appearances of the spiritual world did not simulate life on earth in the body.
So the specific content to which I was blinded was this spatio-temporal relation or structure between the ascending path and the descending path, that is, the relation between the internal mind and the external mind. The first of the ascending steps is not merely the fourth step in the series of six steps, as I used to see it during the blindness phase. Rather, the first ascending step is the first implantation of rational consciousness within the already developed sensuous consciousness. This was not merely BLUE consciousness, but BLUE consciousness born within GREEN consciousness and now growing within it. Now the sub-stages of BLUE consciousness are activities taking place in the internal mind, which is the internal portion of the external mind--GREEN consciousness. Similarly with the other two steps. As the diagram now makes it clear--here it is again
there aren't six independent degrees that each have their external and internal portions (thus 12). Rather, there are three minds corresponding to the three Heavens. Each mind has an external portion called sensuous consciousness and an internal portion called rational consciousness.
What is rational consciousness within sensuous consciousness? THIS IS THE INFORMATION TO WHICH I WAS BLINDED.
But now the door of perception was ordered opened and the above diagram was its outmost embodiment. Research can reveal more detail from it. Spiritual geography diagrams and charts help the theistic psychology researcher to navigate the spiritual landscapes and to keep track for self and others, what the path and route has been. The more these routes are traced and explicated as science, the more our race can advance in its never ending expansion of consciousness. This is because consciousness raising involves the growth of the organic mind and this is the spiritual world. Navigating the spiritual world and becoming knowledgeable about its landscapes is required work for all theistic scientists. These are people who have taken charge of their regeneration and have professionalized their life on earth so that they may cooperate consciously and willingly in their regeneration. Consciousness raising is regeneration and regeneration is navigating the mind with conscious awareness in accordance with the rules revealed in the Writings.
Spatio-temporal knowledge of the spiritual world comes from within not from without. We can read the description of a chart and give a lecture on it, and even improve it in many respects, and STILL not see what it means in reality. This moment of truth comes only when we see within our mind what the chart or description only points to. The meaning of the chart or description can only be "understood" when its referent is seen within one's mind. At that moment illumination is given and now that truth is inside our understanding. It was outside the understanding during the phase of knowledge or memory, when we were able to lecture on it. But the illumination transferred, by Divine intervention (miracle), the truth that was outside of us into truth that was now inside of us.
The truth that was transferred into our understanding came at the moment of illumination. It was born within the sensuous consciousness of it. The memory-knowledge we have resides in our sensorimotor mind (S). It is the first of the three components of the unit of rational consciousness we have to build for ourselves ([S/C/A}). This is the first ascending step. For instance, when we are about to cross the Inversion, the rational truth that exists in its external form lies in our external mind called GREEN consciousness or adolescence period in regeneration. This is our sensuous understanding of truth, or, our sensual understanding of rational truth. We can lecture on the Writings or theistic psychology subjects altogether from the sensorimotor mind, thus altogether from outside of our understanding. We have not crossed the inversion line, we have not yet become rational in our consciousness. The rational truths we present are seen only as to their external appearances, and these are sensuous, not rational.
But the Divine Therapist who is intimately involved in every detail of our progress and growth, puts us into communication with some specific hells related to us, and we are into the experience of a temptation--either natural, spiritual, or celestial, depending on the ascending step we are making. As we struggle in the temptation our focus is brought into the internal, thus the spiritual world. Now we navigate as best we can, with whatever truths we have already accumulated and understood from within. This internal navigation of conscious awareness is especially sharp during temptations. The vision we receive is the landscape of our mind, its organic features in terms of good-evil, true-false, close-distant, loved-hated, and so on. These organic features are made visible to us AS WE REACT TO THE TRUTH being implanted. Our reactivity makes the particulars of the truth visible. We now for the first time see the truth in rational consciousness. We see the referent of what is meant in the sentence that encodes the truth. Now our affection can seize this vision with love, in which case we own the truth from then on to forever. All the truths we own contribute to the quality of our life, whether excellent in the extreme or the opposite, both here and now, and into the future to eternity.
In this case I was thus blinded to the rational truth that each ascending step is really an implanting of the truth into a descending step. The understanding of the rational truth "within" did not enter in any of the previous charts and their narrative descriptions. Even in those places where I drew the rational consciousness as within the sensuous consciousness, I did not understand the referent until the day I mentioned above. Then I drew the diagram showing the dark consciousness to be within the light consciousness. The vision of the referent within me occurred, and then I was able to understand the rational meaning of "within," which then allowed me to generate the new diagram. And now I can study the new diagram and see what further knowledge I can extract from it. First this knowledge will be outside of me, as a description extracted from the Doctrine which is in the diagram. This is my sensuous consciousness of the diagram and its spatio-temporal relations and directives. Now some temptation will come along at some point--near or distant--which will precipitate me in a struggle that will draw me into the spiritual world (or mind), and there in the victory trail of that struggle, I will have the illumination needed to spot the referent. Then I must quickly seize upon it by loving it and supporting it, and explicating it, but above all, living it and practicing it. Then at last the rational truth of what is "within" will be mine to use in my further regeneration, and in the furtherance of the regeneration of others who are brought to study and practice theistic psychology research.
A description and discussion of the new diagram, including other diagrams that followed, will be found in the spiritual genes article here.
Please see a continuation of this topic in an article on spiritual geography.
I would be delighted to know your reactions.
Please see Part 1. The matrices in this article is related to the work of Swedenborgian Physicist Ian Thompson, especially this article that explains the recursiveness of each degree: Discrete Degrees: A Top Down Presentation
The text of De Hemelsche Leer
You might also be interested in consulting related matrices involving the affective, cognitive, and sensorimotor domains in the following articles:
The Will and Understanding || The Heart and Lungs || Good and Truth || Religious Behaviorism || Religious Psychology || Comprehensive Discourse Analysis || Driving Behavior || Phases of Development in Becoming Internet Literate || In Psychotherapy || The Threefold Self || Symbols and Drawings || Topical Organization in Social Psychology || Titles of Articles || Resistance to Health Behaviors || Language Teaching || Song Analysis || Genetic Culture || Cross-cultural Atlas of Affective Meanings || Swedenborg's Theory of Trisubstantivism
I would be delighted to know your reactions.
Some related articles are available here:
Spiritual Associations or The Vertical Community || The Vertical Community || Spiritual Psychology || Cyberpsychology: Cyberspace and the Spiritual World || The Postmodern Paradigm Shift in Psychology || Swedenborg's Status and Significance: A Great Paradox || Elements of Biological Theology