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Immanuel Kant - Describes Swedenborg's communication with the dead



Type of spiritual experience

A description of the experience

from Dreams of a Spirit Seer

Swedenborg talks with departed souls at will, and reads in their memory (power of perception) that state which they observe in themselves, and sees it just as clearly as with bodily eyes.

Moreover, the enormous distances which divide the rational inhabitants of the world are nothing in regard to the spiritual universe, and it is just as easy for one to talk with an inhabitant of Saturn, as with a deceased human soul.

Everything depends on the condition of the interior state, and upon the conjunction in which spirits are according to the harmony of their states of good and truth. And the more remote spirits can easily enter into mutual communication through the intermediation of others.

Thus man does not need to have actually dwelt in the other worlds for the sake of knowing them some day with all their wonders. His soul reads in the memory of the deceased citizens of other worlds the perceptions which they possess about their life and dwelling-place, and thereby sees objects as easily as by immediate observation........................

Thus he [Swedenbourg] talks about the gardens, vast countries, the dwelling-places, galleries, and arcades of the spirits, which he claims to see with his own eyes in the clearest light. And he assures us that, having spoken after their death with all his friends, he had nearly always found that those having died recently could persuade themselves with difficulty that they had died, because they beheld a similar world; also, that societies of spirits of the same inner state live in the same appearance in regard to the country and other things there, and that a change of state is accompanied by the appearance of a change of locality.

The source of the experience

Swedenborg, Emanuel

Concepts and Symbols used in the text or image