Watch full episode here!
Our expert panel has gathered to answer viewer questions with the help of the writings of eighteenth-century spiritual teacher Emanuel Swedenborg.
The panel members are:
- Curtis Childs, host of Swedenborg & Life
- Chara Daum, Latin consultant, New Century Edition
- Chris Dunn, community manager for Swedenborg & Life
- Karin Childs, writer for Swedenborg & Life
Questions and answers are summarized below; please follow the links for the full discussion.
1. If you go from lower parts of heaven to higher parts does your spiritual spouse go with you?
Swedenborg isn’t always clear on the details of interactions between people and the heavens, but it’s definitely a movement toward love. Since heaven is based on spiritual community and spiritual trajectory, your attachment to your spiritual spouse will be consistent with your placement in heaven. Basically, if you’re aligned with your soul mate, you are both aligned with the same parts of heaven and will move as a unit.
2. As things have changed in the natural world since Swedenborg’s time, what do you think has changed in the spiritual world since then?
Our world is a reflection of the spiritual world, so the two worlds are most likely changing at the same time. For instance, our technology here on earth has enabled us to connect with anybody across the globe, which potentially has a correspondence to expanded communication in heaven.
3. I’ve heard that God loves everyone and doesn’t send anyone to hell. Does this mean that God doesn’t avenge us when someone harms us?
God doesn’t punish the evil; the evil punishes itself. Peace doesn’t come from vengeance, and it definitely doesn’t come from harm. The divine design is protective, not punitive— harmful people are isolated and surrounded by other harmful people of their own volition. Remember, too, that even though there is pain and suffering, God is using these circumstances to ultimately lead us toward good.
Interlude: Ryan Brown Interview
Ryan finds the idea of correspondences to be a really helpful tool in understanding both the world and our inner experiences. This view of our relationship to the spiritual realm can help teach us how to grow and even how to teach and parent children.
4. What are the processes and events Swedenborg describes to work out, purge, and remove the negative aspects of our spirit after we die to ascend toward heaven?
God wants to bring us along in the divine design, and so we’ll encounter ongoing wake-up calls that give us the chance to re-examine ourselves while we’re here on earth. With each little epiphany, we have the possibility of taking a step forward or a step backward. And we’re given these opportunities to work through things in the spiritual world as well.
5. Do heavenly spirits do “missionary” work to help the growth of spirits in hellish communities?
The short answer is “yes.” Swedenborg documents occasions where angels do their best to help hellish spirits find their way up. They’re continually working to lessen suffering. Even Swedenborg himself had the opportunity to visit with hellish spirits and see what he could do to help them bring their intellect up to the level of heavenly ideas.
Related Swedenborg & Life Videos
“Guardian Angels, Forgiveness, and Self-Improvement” (10 Questions)
Free E-Book Downloads
Sacred Scripture / White Horse