Page:A Compendium of the Theological Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg.djvu/109

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CONCERNING GOD.

coverings of the liver, the pancreas, and the spleen, enter into the single things of them that are within; so the covering of the lungs, which is called the pleura, enters into their interiors; likewise the pericardium enters into all and the single things of the heart; and generally the peritonæum, by anastomoses with the coverings of all the viscera; so also the meninges of the brain; these, by fibrils emitted from them, enter into all the glands below, and through these into all the fibres, and through these into all parts of the body. Thence it is that the head, from the brains, governs all and the single things subordinate to itself. These things are adduced merely in order that, from visible things, some idea may be formed as to how God perceives, sees, and knows all things, even to the most minute, which are done according to order.

God, from those things which are according to order, perceives, knows, and sees all and single things, even to the most minute, that are done contrary to order; because God does not hold man in evil, but withholds him from evil; thus does not lead him [in evil] but strives with him. From that perpetual striving, struggling, resistance, repugnance, and reaction of the evil and the false against His good and truth, thus against Himself, He perceives both their quantity and quality. This follows from the omnipresence of God in all and the single things of His order; and at the same time from His omniscience of all and the single things therein; comparatively, as one whose ear is in harmony and accord exactly detects every discordant and inharmonious sound, how much and in what manner it is discordant, as soon as it enters. (T. C. R n. 60, 61.)

 

The Omnipresence of God.

The Divine omnipresence may be illustrated by the wonderful presence of angels and spirits in the spiritual world. In that world, because there is no space, but only the appearance of space, an angel or a spirit may, in a moment, become present to another, if only he comes into a similar affection of love, and thought from this; for these two cause the appearance of space. That such is the presence of all there, was manifest to me from the fact that I could see Africans and Hindoos there very near me, although they are so many miles distant upon earth; nay, that I could become present to those who are in other planets of this system, and also to those who are in the planets in other systems beyond this solar system. By virtue of this presence, not of place, but of the appearance of place, I have conversed with the Apostles, with departed popes, emperors, and kings; with the founders of the present church—Luther, Calvin, and Melancthon—and with