The Magazine
About the E-zine
Contact us

Banner Space and Sponsorship


Emanuel Swedenborg

There is evidence that the Near Death realm can be reached during Out-of-Body Experiences. Many people describes several visits to levels of reality in which they encountered deceased friends. One very skilled out-of-body visitor to the "Other Side" was the Swedish mystic Swedenborg.

Text: Michael Talbot
Edited extract from the book: "The Holographic Universe"

Background painting: Albert Bierstadt, Yosemite Valley (1866)

Emanuel Swedenborg

Born in 1688, Swedenborg was the Leonardo da Vinci of his era. In his early years he studied science. He was the leading mathematician in Sweden, spoke nine languages, was an engraver, a politician, an astronomer, and a businessman, built watches and microscopes as a hobby, wrote books on metallurgy, color theory, commerce, economics, physics, chemistry, mining, and anatomy, and invented prototypes for the airplane and the submarine.
Swedenborg's House in which his theological works were written

Throughout all of this he also meditated regularly, and when he reached middle age, developed the ability to enter deep trances during which he left his body and visited what appeared to him to be heaven and conversed with "angels" and "spirits." That Swedenborg was experiencing something profound during these journeys, there can be no doubt.

He became so famous for this ability that the queen of Sweden asked him to find out why her deceased brother had neglected to respond to a letter she had sent him before his death. Swedenborg promised to consult the deceased and the next day returned with a message which the queen confessed contained information only she and her dead brother knew.

Swedenborg performed this service several times for various individuals who sought his help, and on another occasion told a widow where to find a secret compartment in her deceased husband's desk in which she found some desperately needed documents. So well known was this latter incident that it inspired the German philosopher Immanuel Kant to write an entire book on Swedenborg entitled "Dreams of a Spirit-Seer".

From an old engraving, showing the House of Nobles (right) and Riddarholm Church (left, background).

But the most amazing thing about Swedenborg's accounts of the afterlife realm is how closely they mirror the descriptions offered by modern-day Near Death Experiencers. For example, Swedenborg talks about passing more beautiful than any on earth and one where time and space no longer exist, a dazzling light that emitted a feeling of love, appearing before beings of light, and being enveloped by an all-encompassing peace and serenity.

Illustration: Gustave Doré

He says that he was allowed to observe firsthand the arrival of the newly deceased in heaven, and watch as they were subjected to the life review, a process he called "the opening of the Book of Lives." He acknowledged that during the process a person witnessed "everything they had ever been or done," but added a unique twist. According to Swedenborg, the information that arose during the opening of the Book of Lives was recorded in the nervous system of the person's spiritual body. Thus, in order to evoke the life review an "angel" had to examine the individuals entire body "beginning with the fingers of each hand, and proceeding through the whole."

Swedenborg also refers to the holographic thought balls the angels use to communicate and says that they are no different from the portrayals he could see in the "wave-substance" that surrounded a person he describes these telepathic borsts of knowledge as a picture language so dense with information that each image contains a thousand ideas. A communicated series of these portrayals can also be quite lengthy and "last up to several hours, in such a sequential arrangement that one can only marvel.

Editor's note: read about Robert Monroe's R.O.T.E.

But even here Swedenborg added a fascinating twist. In addition to using portrayals, angels also employ a speech that contains concepts that are beyond human understanding. In fact, the main reason they use portrayals is because it is the only way they can make even a pale version of their thoughts and ideas comprehensible to human beings.

Swedenborg's experiences even corroborate some of the less commonly reported elements of the NDE. He noted that in the spirit world one no longer needs to eat food, but added that information takes its place as a source of nourishment. He said that when spirits and angels talked, their thoughts were constantly coalescing into three dimensional symbolic images, especially animals.

For example, he said that when angels talked about love and affection "beautiful animals are presented, sduch as lambs... When however the angels are talking about evil affections, this is portrayed by hideous, fierce, and useless animals, like tigers, bears, wolves, scorpions, snakes, and mice.

Although it is not a feature reported by modern NDEers, Swedenborg said that he was astonished to find that in heaven there are also spirits from other planets, an astounding assertion for a man who was born over three hundred years ago!

Most intriguing of all are those remarks by Swedenborg that seem to refer to reality's holographic qualities. For instance, he said that although human beings appear to be separate from one another, we are all connected in a cosmic unity.

Moreover, each of us is a heaven in miniature, and every person, indeed the entire physical-universe, is a microcosm of the greater divine reality. As we have seen, he also believed that underlying visible reality was a wave-substance.

In fact, several Swedenborg scholars have commented on the many parallels between some of swedenborg's concepts and Bohm and Pribram's theory. One such scholar is Dr. George F. Dole, a professor of theology at the Swedenborg School of Religion in Newton, Massachusetts.

Dole who holds degrees from Yale, Oxford, and Harvard, notes that one of the most basic tenets of Swedenborg's thinking is that our universe is constantly created and sustained by two wavelike flows, one from heaven and one coming from our own soul or spirit. "If we put these images together, the resemblance to the hologram is striking" says Dole.

"We are constituted by the intersection of two flows—one direct, from the divine, and one indirect, from the divine via our environment. We can view ourselves as interference patterns, because the inflow is a wave phenomenon, and we are where the waves meet."

Swedenborg also believed that, despite its ghostlike and ephemeral qualities, heaven is actually a more fundamental level of reality than our own physical world. It is, he said, the archetypal source from which all earthly forms originate, and to which all forms return, a concept not too dissimilar from Bohm's idea of the implicate and explicate orders. In addition he too believed that the afterlife realm and physical reality are different in degree but not in kind, and that the material world is just a frozen version of the thought-built reality of heaven.

The matter that comprises both heaven and earth "flows in by stages" from the Divine, said Swedenborg, and "at each new stage it becomes more general and therefore coarser and hazier, and it becomes slower, and therefore more viscous and colder."

Swedenborg filled almost twenty volumes with his experiences, and on his deathbed was asked if there was anything he wanted to recant. He earnestly replied: "Everything that I have written is as true as you now behold me. I might have said much more had it been permitted to me. After death you will see all, and then we shall have much to say to each other on the subject."

Text: Michael Talbot
Edited extract from: "The Holographic Universe", p 257-259

The Swedenborg Foundation

A Brief Biography of Emanuel Swedenborg

Buy The Holographic Universe Now







The Holographic Universe


Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton Tells of Death Visions During Operation
"I saw dark masks crushing, like death masks being crushed, in series. Then I'd see these great circles of light. And then, like, Hillary's picture or Chelsea's face (daughter) would appear and other people that I knew and cared about. It was amazing."

Why Life Speeds Up As You Get Older
Time passes slowly when we are bored or in pain; time vanishes when we are having a good time. But there is much more to it, especially when the scope of phenomena include déjà vu, NDEs, and the memory capacities of mathematical savants who can remember great quantities of numbers. Douwe Draaisma, a historian in psychology, report on scientific accounts of memory and time with an eye for the bizarre.
Swedish Study: Parents' Directness Helps Sick Child Deal With Death
The decision to talk to a sick child about death is never easy. Many parents struggle to do what's right, but often wonder if they've made the best choice. Though a Swedish study released in September found parents who choose to talk to their children have no regrets, it also raises another, more basic question that all families of children with cancer face: How will our family handle our child's cancer diagnosis?
They Walk Among Us
Today, our secular society doesn't accommodate those who genuinely investigate life after death. But Emma Heathcote-James' new book, "They Walk Among Us", argues that modern technology can now verify another dimension exists. "We now have the capacity to understand there is a world beyond, and everything paranormal is in fact a natural occurrence," the British author says.
Top Scientist Asks: Is Life All Just a Dream?
Professor Sir Martin Rees is to suggest that "life, the universe and everything" may be no more than a giant computer simulation with humans reduced to bits of software.
The God Particle or God Himself?
The legendary particle that physicists thought explained the basic question of why matter has mass, often called the "God particle," probably does not
exist, and now a few scientists are beginning to consider the idea that
what might be there is not a particle, but some sort of consciousness.
News items' source:
Kevin Williams
Soul Travel is produced
by Sasser Media Lab