Extracts

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All of us are Centers


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[1 of 3] Swedenborg (1688-1772, Sweden): primary subject "Afterlife, finding one's place in" (search under Afterlife/Afterlife, Heaven, Hell)": source "Spiritual Experiences, vol.4": detail "Section 6058"
Certain ones asked why it is that evil spirits, thus those who deny God, who are silent, cannot be in an angelic society. They received the reply that all spirits ultimately come to the place where they are as it were in their own center, for those who are above him, who are below him, and who are around him on every side result in his being in that place, because there is a communication and inflow of affections, for which reason in the end no one can be in another place than in his own position, and as it were in his own center. All angels and all spirits are also centers, for the heavenly form is made up of continuous centers.

[2 of 3] Inge (Dean) (1860-1954, England): primary subject "Reality, observations on" (search under Inner Life/Teachings)": source "Philosophy of Plotinus: Gifford Lectures 1917-1918, vol.2": detail "From Plotinus' 'Enneads'"
External nature appears to us as a collection of objects in juxtaposition, with no inner connection. The main task of the Soul, and above that, of Spirit, is to systematize and unify. In a sense Identity and Difference are not so much categories by the side of the other pairs, as (taken together) the relation in which each member in the other pairs stands to its correlative. Or, we might say that the antithesis between Identity and Difference is the most fundamental, and that until we understand how it can be transcended, we cannot hope to understand how Change and Permanence, Thought and its Object, can be unified in the world of Spirit.
 The great doctrine which Plotinus expresses as the reconciliation of 'the same' and the 'other,' is that all the barriers which break up experience into fragmentary and opposing elements must be thrown down, not in order to reduce life to a featureless mass of undifferentiated experience, but in order that each element in experience may be realized in its true relations, which are potentially without limit. Otherness and sameness help to define and emphasize each other. The whole, as Plotinus tells us repeatedly, is in each part. Individual Spirits are not parts of the one Spirit. They exist 'in' each other; each is the whole under a particular form. The universal is implicit in the particular. The aspects of Spirit are “many in one and one in many and all together.” They are not separated in the slightest degree from each other; the whole Spirit lives in each center of life. There must be differentiation; otherwise no communion of Spirits, no interaction on the spiritual plane, would be possible.


[3 of 3] Muir, John (1838-1914, Scotland): primary subject "Center, each person is a" (search under Inner Life/Teachings)": detail "‘Wild Wool' printed in ‘The Overland Monthly’, April 1875"
In the making of every animal the presence of every other animal has been recognized. Indeed, every atom in creation may be said to be acquainted with and married to every other, but with universal union there is a division sufficient in degree for the purposes of the most intense individuality; and no matter what may be the note which any creature forms in the song of existence, it is made first for itself, then more and more remotely for all the world and worlds.