Secrets of Heaven Vol. 2: New Century Edition
By Emanuel Swedenborg
Translated by Lisa Hyatt Cooper
Swedenborg’s first major theological work, Secrets of Heaven, reveals the unseen realms that await beyond death. In this second of fifteen volumes, Swedenborg discusses the nature of heaven and the perceptions of the spirits that live there. In addition, the work offers a detailed examination of Genesis 9-15, including the story of the tower of Babel. Read more
Deluxe hardcover, 608 pages
Portable paperback and e-book, 512 pages
The New Century Edition is printed in two different editions:
Contains all of the introductions, notes, and supplemental materials. Secrets of Heaven is available as a deluxe hardcover.Hardcover $29.95
Smaller paperbacks that include the complete text of the translations, but none of the introductions, notes, or other supplemental materials.
Secrets of Heaven is a verse-by-verse exposition of Genesis and Exodus, showing the correspondences (connections through symbol between the material and spiritual world) in which, according to Swedenborg’s analysis, the Bible is written. Each chapter includes embedded sections describing Swedenborg’s spiritual experiences and expounding his theological views. This book series is Swedenborg’s largest and in many ways most challenging title, but it contains abundant points of interest to reward the adventurous reader. In addition to a deep exploration of biblical inner meaning, it presents Swedenborg’s transcendent visions of heaven and correspondingly horrific views of hell; his reports on the process of dying and entering life after death; his spiritual anthropology (specifically, his descriptions of the spiritual state of the earliest people); and his views on many other topics, including the correspondences of the organs and systems of the human body, the theory of a higher and more perfect level of memory above our conscious memory, the existence and nature of human life on other planets, the dual nature of visions and dreams, and the nature of the human mind and its developmental stages.
Volume 2 provides the inner meaning of Genesis 9–15. Here the rise of a new and major religious culture is symbolized by the story of Noah and his descendants, and the eventual collapse of that culture by the destruction of the tower of Babel. After this point a shift in focus occurs: the inner meaning now concerns the spiritual aspects of Jesus’s life. The literal story continues with Abram’s call to Canaan, symbolizing Jesus’s first realization of his divine purpose. Within this volume Swedenborg also completes his description of hell and addresses the nature of time, space, language, and the Bible in the spiritual world.