Man in God's likeness


[1 of 1] Swedenborg (1688-1772, Sweden): primary subject "God, image or likeness of" (search under Beings/God)": source "True Christian Religion, Appendix": detail "Section 26"
The likeness of God, in which man was made, consists in his being able to live, that is, to will, love, and intend, as also to think, reflect, and choose, in all appearance as from himself; consequently in being able to receive the things that appertain to love and wisdom proceeding from God, and to reproduce them in likeness as God from himself, for God says “Behold the man was as one of us, in knowing good and evil” [Gen iii. 22]. A man without the faculty of receiving and reproducing those things which proceed into him from God, would be no more a living soul, than an oyster in a shell at the bottom of a river, which has not the least power of moving out of its place: nor would he be any more an image of God, than a graven image of a man made with joints, movable by means of a handle, and capable of uttering sounds by being blown into: nay the very mind of man, which is identical with his spirit, would actually be wind, air, or ether, according to the idea of the present church concerning a spirit; for without the faculty of receiving and reproducing the things flowing-in from God, altogether as from himself, he would have nothing about him his own, or proper to himself, except what is imperceptible, which resembles the proprium of an inanimate graven image.