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Human nature can sometimes be pointed to as an excuse for inappropriate behaviour: human nature can be condemned as an unchangeable vehicle creating victims of its thought-patterns. At other times, however, sweet-natured individuals can be experienced, too! Are these two aspects of the same coin? Is a sweet nature the result of hard work by an individual to rise above otherwise poor patterns of living?

One biblical image to reflect on for human spiritual nature is Genesis Chapter 1 verses 26/27 –

“Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our own image, in our likeness, … '  So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him …”


Emanuel Swedenborg suggests that the Divine Source is present in everyone as images of Himself.

It may be helpful, therefore, for you to consider how you experience God.

You may wish to consider that in these experiences the qualities of human spiritual nature could be revealed.

In a variety of contexts the popular press seems to report human nature as something quite negative – primarily seeking after satisfying No.1. For example, in a recent discussion on ‘green issues’ one report said that “…you might say, human nature being what it is, the only way to promote mass greenism is via such an appeal to enlightened self-interest. …”.

In other words, an early, perhaps immature, way of concerning oneself with the welfare of others or the planet is to increase one’s own benefits in the process.

Is human nature basically self-centred - looking after oneself?

Is the Divine Nature similar?

If God is a God of love and wisdom it then appears that human nature reflecting a self-centred view of life needs to be uplifted to make it into a human spiritual nature.

As day follows night, enlightenment follows darkness of spirit: whether that darkness derives from ignorance or perhaps a wilful putting aside of available revelation and inner knowing. Could it be that an enlightened human nature – called for now human spiritual nature - is received solely from a Divine Creative Source: much talked about everyday human nature being a forerunner of a higher nature available to every person?

Perhaps it may be said that light – being able to see and or understand - is one image of a Higher Source. As in many dawns, early morning light penetrates darkness and gives a new, fresh awareness.

In a context of human nature and human spiritual nature perhaps human spiritual nature is somewhat higher, deeper or purer. It may be argued that human spiritual nature is a revitalised human nature: revitalised by choosing to receive and use existing images of love and wisdom from a Higher Source?

Within the world of nature warmth accompanies light and helps germinate things in the vegetable kingdom; warmth gives energy to the animal kingdom. This natural world illustration could also be taken as an indication of how the kingdom of a spiritual realm responds to the love of God – embracing a sphere of trust, commitment, justice and compassion! A combination of love as well as wisdom is needed to reflect an image and likeness of God. Such a combination leaves the possibility of holding an image of God which offers compassion and justice – a justice which embraces the welfare of all concerned, including the learning of lessons leading to adopting a willingness to change and living a path of reconciliation.


Everyone looks from the love present in him at the things that belong to that love; and what he sees he calls truths because these are in harmony with it. Everyone's love holds the light of his life within it, for love is like a flame which radiates light. The nature of a person's love or flame therefore determines that of the light of truth with him. Those who are stirred by a love of good are able to see the things belonging to that love, and so to see the truths that are in the Word. They do so according to the amount and the quality of their love of good, for light or intelligence flows in from heaven, that is, from the Lord by way of heaven.

Emanuel Swedenborg in Arcana Caelestia 3798:2



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