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The Gist of Swedenborg
written by "Smyth, Julian Kennedy, 1856-1921"
...afield in the sciences. Metallurgy, geology, a varied field of invention, chemistry, as well as his duties as an Assessor on the Board of Mines and of a legislator in the Diet, all engaged him, with an immediate outcome in his work, and often with results in contributions to human knowledge which are gaining recognition only now. The Principia and two companion volumes, dedicated to his patron, the Duke of Brunswick, crowned his versatile productions in the physical sciences. Academies of science, at home and abroad, were electing him to membership. Conspicuous in Swedenborg's thought all along was the premise that there is a God and the presupposition of that whole element in life which we call the spiritual. As he pushed his studies into the fields of physiology and psychology, this premised realm of the spirit became the express goal of his researches. Some of his most valuable and most startling discoveries came in these fields. Outstanding are a work on The Brain and two on the Animal Kingdom (kingdom of the anima, or soul). As his gaze sought the soul, however, in the light in which he had more and more successfully beheld all his subjects for fifty-five years, she eluded direct knowledge. He was increasingly baffled, until a new light broke in on him. Then he was borne along, in a profound humiliation of his intellectual ambitions, by another way. For when the new light steadied, he had undergone a personal religious experience, the rich journals of which he himself never published. But what was of public concern, his consciousness was opened into the world of the spirit, so that he could observe its facts and laws as, for so long, he had observed those of the material world, and in its own world could receive a revelation of the doctrines of man's spiritual life. It was now, for the first time, too, that he gave a deep consideration to the condition of the Christian Church, revealed in otherworld judgment to be...

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