DIVINE ORDER >> Divine Human >> Heaven

order1p1 Man was created from Divine order. Man was created a form of Divine order because he was created an image and likeness of God; and as God is order itself, he was  created an image and likeness of order. There are two things which are the source of order and which give it permanence, namely, the Divine love and the Divine wisdom; and man was created a receptacle of these, and was therefore created also into the order in accordance with which these two act in the universe, and especially in accordance with which they act in the angelic heaven; consequently that the entire heaven is in its largest effigy a form of Divine order, and is in the sight of God like one man. Moreover, there is a plenary correspondence between that heaven and man; for there is not a society in heaven that does not correspond to some one of the members, viscera, or organs in man; and therefore it is there said that such a society is in the province of the liver, or of the pancreas, or of the spleen, or of the stomach, the eye, the ear, or the tongue, and so on. Furthermore, the angels themselves know in what region of any part of man they dwell. That this is so I have been permitted to learn by living experience. I have seen as a single man a society consisting of some thousands of angels; and thus it was made clear that heaven in its complex is an image of God; and an image of God is a form of Divine order. [TCR 65]

It must be understood that all things that proceed from the sun of the spiritual world, in the midst of which is Jehovah God, have relation to man; and therefore whatever things come forth in that world conspire towards the human form, and exhibit that form in their inmosts; thus all objects there that are presented to the sight are representative of man. Animals of all kinds are seen there, and they are likenesses of the affections of love and consequent thoughts of the angels; and the same is true of the trees, flowers, and green fields there; and what affection this or that object represents the angels are permitted to know; and what is wonderful, when their inmost sight is opened, they recognize their own image in them; and this takes place because every man is his own love and his own thought therefrom. And because in every man affections and thoughts therefrom are various and manifold, some of them relating to the affection of one animal and some to that of another, the images of these affections become manifest in this way. But of this more will be seen in the section on Creation (n. 78). From all this the truth is seen that the end of creation was an angelic heaven from the human race, and consequently man, in whom God can dwell as in His receptacle; and this is the reason why man was created a form of Divine order. [TCR 66]  

0140a   Previous to creation God was love itself and wisdom itself and the union of these two in the effort to accomplish uses; for love and wisdom apart from use are only fleeting matters of reason, which fly away if not applied to use. The first two separated from the third are like birds flying above a great ocean, which are at length exhausted by flying, and fall down and are drowned. Evidently, therefore, the universe was created by God to give existence to uses; and for this reason the universe may be called a theater of uses. And as man is the chief end of creation, it follows that each and all things were created for the sake of man; and therefore each and all things belonging to order were brought together and concentrated in him, to the end that through him God might accomplish primary uses. Love and wisdom apart from their third, which is use, may be likened to the sun’s heat and light; which, if they did not operate upon men, animals, and vegetables, would be worthless things; but by influx into and operation upon these they become real. For there are three things that follow each other in order, namely, end, cause, and effect; and it is known in the learned world that the end is nothing unless it regards the effecting cause, and that the end and this cause are nothing unless an effect is produced. The end and cause may indeed be contemplated abstractly in the mind, but still only on account of some effect which the end purposes and the cause secures. It is the same with love, wisdom, and use; use is the end which love purposes, and through the cause accomplishes; and when use is accomplished love and wisdom have a real existence; and in the use they make for themselves a habitation and foundation where they rest as in their home. It is the same with the man who has in him the love and wisdom of God when he is performing uses; and to enable him to perform Divine uses he was created an image and likeness of God, that is, a form of Divine order. [TCR 67]

The man who by means of falsities respecting the spiritual things of the church has become natural, must needs think of the Divine omnipotence as superior to order, and thus of a Divine omnipotence without order, in consequence of which he would fall into the following insane thoughts: Why the Lord's advent into the world, and why was redemption effected in that way, when by His omnipotence God could have accomplished the same thing out of heaven as well as upon the earth? Why might He not by redemption have saved the whole human race without an exception? How is it that the devil has since been able to prevail over the Redeemer in man? Why is there a hell? Could not God have blotted out hell by His omnipotence, and cannot He now do so, or else deliver all men from it, and make them angels of heaven? Why a last judgment? Cannot God transfer all the goats from His left to His right, and make them sheep? Why did He cast down the angels of the dragon and the dragon himself from heaven, instead of changing them into angels of Michael? Why does He not to all of these impart faith and impute His Son's righteousness, and thus forgive their sins, and justify, and sanctify them? Why does He not cause the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fishes of the sea to talk, give them intelligence, and introduce them along with men into heaven? Why did He not, or does He not, make the whole world a paradise, with no tree of the knowledge of good and evil and no serpent in it; and where all the hills would flow with generous wine and produce gold and silver naturally, so that all might live therein with jubilee and song, and thus in perpetual festivity and joy, as images of God? Would not such things be worthy of an omnipotent God? Besides other like questions. But, my friend, this is all idle talk. The Divine omnipotence is not without order; God is Himself Order; and all things were created from order, in order, and for order, because they were created from God. There is an order into which man was created, namely, that blessing or curse depends for him upon his freedom of choice in spiritual things; for, as said above, it is impossible to create a man without freedom of choice, nor even a beast, a bird, or a fish. But beasts have only a natural freedom of choice, while man has not only natural freedom of choice but also spiritual freedom of choice. [TCR 502]

This is the statute of the passover. That this signifies the laws of order for those who are liberated from damnation and infestations, is evident from the signification of a "statute," as being that which is from order (of which below); and from the signification of "the passover," as being the presence of the Lord and liberation from damnation (see n. 7093e, 7867). As regards that which is of order, which is signified by "statute," be it known that all the statutes commanded to the sons of Israel were laws of order in the external form, but those things which they represented and signified were laws of order in the internal form. Laws of order are truths which are from good; the complex of all the laws of order is the Divine truth proceeding from the Divine good of the Lord. From this it is evident that the Divine Itself of the Lord in heaven is order, the Divine good the essential of order, and the Divine truth its formal. [AC7995]

And that which he did was evil in the eyes of Jehovah. That this signifies that it was contrary to the Divine order, is evident from the signification of "evil in the eyes of Jehovah," or evil against Him, as being what is contrary to the order which is from Him. This appears also from the deed, and likewise from the statute in regard to the husband's brother, namely, that his brother's wife should take his shoe from off his foot, and spit in his face, and that his name should be called in Israel, The house of him that hath his shoe taken off (Deut. 25:8-10), whereby was signified that he was without good external or internal; and they who are without good, and are in evil, are against Divine order. All that evil which springs or flows forth from interior evil (that is, from the intention or end of evil, such as was this of Onan's), is contrary to Divine order; but that which does not spring or flow forth from interior evil, that is, from an intention or end of evil, though it sometimes appears like evil, yet is not so, provided the end is not evil, for the end qualifies every deed. For man's life is in his end, because what he loves and thence thinks, he has for his end; the life of his soul being nothing else.

 [2] Everyone is able to know that evil is contrary to Divine order, and good according to it; for Divine order is the Lord Himself in heaven, because the Divine good and truth which are from Him constitute order, insomuch that they are order, Divine good its essential, and Divine truth its formal. When Divine order is represented in form it appears as a man; for the Lord, from whom it is, is the only Man (n. 49, 288, 477, 565, 1871, 1894, 3638, 3639); and insofar as angels, spirits, and men receive from Him, that is, insofar as they are in good and thence in truth, thus insofar as they are in His Divine order, so far they are men. From this it is that the universal heaven represents one man, which is called the Grand Man, and that the whole and every part of man corresponds thereto, as has been shown at the end of the chapters. From this also it is that the angels in heaven all appear in the human form; and that, on the other hand, the evil spirits who are in hell, though from fantasy they appear to one another like men, in the light of heaven appear as monsters, more dire and horrible according to the evil in which they are (n. 4533); and this because evil itself is contrary to order, and thus contrary to the human form; for as before said the Divine order when represented in form appears as a man. [4839]

It is worthy of note, that as the universal heaven bears relation to a man, who from this is called the Grand Man (as shown at the end of many chapters), so each society in like manner bears relation to a man; for the image of the universal heaven flows into the societies, and causes them to be like it; and not only into the societies, but also into the individuals in the society, whence each individual has a human form; for everyone in an angelic society is a heaven in least form. The varieties of their human form are in accordance with the quality of good and of truth with them. Hence it is that every spirit and angel appears in a form wholly in accordance with the communication of his thoughts and affections with the societies. Hence the more they are in good and truth, so are they in a more beautiful form. But if the communication of the thoughts and affections has been diffused into societies not according to heavenly order, then the form is to the same extent unbeautiful. And if the communication is with infernal societies, then the form is ugly and devilish; and those who are in total opposition to good and truth, being in opposition to the form of heaven (which is the human form), in the light of heaven appear not as men, but as monsters. This is the case with the whole of hell, with the societies therein, and with the individuals in the societies; and this also with variety according to the degree of opposition of evil against good and of the derivative falsity against truth. [AC 6605]


 In the sense of the letter the Word is in its fullness, its holiness, and its power, because the two prior or interior senses, which are called spiritual and celestial, exist simultaneously in the natural sense which is the sense of the letter (as stated above, n. 210, 212). How they exist simultaneously shall be further explained. In heaven and in the world there is successive order and there is simultaneous order. In successive order one thing succeeds and follows another from the highest down to the lowest; but in simultaneous order one thing stands next to another from inmosts even to outermosts. Successive order is like a column arranged in steps from summit to base; while simultaneous order is like a work coherent with the circumferences from the center even to the outmost surface. I will now explain how successive order becomes simultaneous order in the outmost. It is done as follows: the highest things of successive order become the inmost things of simultaneous order; and the lowest things of successive order become the outermost things of simultaneous order; comparatively as a column arranged in steps when it subsides becomes a body coherent in a plane. Thus is the simultaneous formed from the successive, and this in each and all things both of the natural world and of the spiritual world; for there is everywhere a first, a middle, and a last, and the first tends and passes through the middle to its last. But it must be clearly understood that there are degrees of purity in accordance with which both of these orders are determined.

Bib1leOr1der [2] Now in respect to the Word: the celestial, the spiritual, and the natural go forth from the Lord in successive order; and in the outmost they exist in simultaneous order;  and thus the celestial and spiritual senses of the Word exist simultaneously in its natural sense. When this is comprehended it can be seen how the natural sense of the Word is the containant, the basis, and the support of its spiritual and celestial senses; also how the Divine good and truth are in the sense of the letter of the Word in their fullness, their holiness and their power. From all this it is clear that the Word is the real Word in the sense of the letter, for inwardly in this there is spirit and life. This is what the Lord says: The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life (John 6:63); for the words of the Lord were spoken in the natural sense. The celestial and spiritual senses separated from the natural sense are not the Word; for they are like spirit and life without a body, and are like a palace without a foundation (as said above, n. 213). [TCR 214]

I will relate some wonderful things. The Lord, who alone is Man, and from whom angels, spirits, and the inhabitants of earth are called men, does Himself, by His influx into heaven cause the universal heaven to represent and bear relation to a man, and by influx through heaven and from Himself immediately into the individuals there, cause each one to appear as a man, the angels in a more beautiful and resplendent form than can be described; and in like manner by His influx into the spirit of man. Nay, with an angel, a spirit, and a man who lives in charity toward the neighbor and in love to the Lord, the very smallest things of thought bear relation to a man, for the reason that this charity and this love are from the Lord, and whatever is from the Lord bears relation to a man. Moreover it is these things that make man. On the other hand, in hell, because they who are there are in things contrary to charity and celestial love, in their own light they do indeed appear like men, but in the light of heaven as dreadful monsters, in some of whom scarcely anything of the human form is recognizable. The reason is that the Lord's influx through heaven is not received, but is either rejected, or extinguished, or perverted, causing them to have such an appearance. They are in like manner such forms in the smallest things of their thought or in their ideas; for such as anyone is in the whole, such he is in part; these being analogous and homogeneous. That form in which they appear is also the form of the hell in which they are; for every hell has its own form, which in the light of heaven is like a monster; and those of them who appear from this light show by their form from what hell they are. They have appeared to me at the gates which opened into the world of spirits, and they were seen as monsters, with much variety. That the gates of hell open into the world of spirits may be seen above (n. 5852). [End of Vol. 8, also the book of Genesis, and of Part 5 of the original Latin work.] [AC 6626]

Author: EMANUEL SWEDENBORG (1688-1772)

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