Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg and Joseph Smith Using His Writings

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  • user warning: Table './exmo_08072012/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired query: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<p>by foggy 2012</p>\n<p>For example, in 1758 a man by the name of Emanuel Swedenborg wrote a book about his visions of the afterlife. Swedenborg insisted: \"There are three heavens,\" described as \"entirely distinct from each other.\" He called the highest heaven \"the Celestial Kingdom,\" and stated that the inhabitants of the three heavens corresponded to the \"sun, moon and stars.\"</p>\n<p>Since I ride either the bus or train to and from work every day, the Kindle app on my iphone has become my favorite thing.</p>\n<p>Right now I\'m working my way through a long list of the writings of Honore de Balzac that I got for free from amazon.</p>\n<p>Imagine my entertainment and surprise while reading \'Seraphita\' when not only running across such familiar words as \'urim and thummim\' but having one of the main characters make the comment that \"in reading [Swedenborg] men either miss his meaning or become Seers like him.\"</p>\n<p>I had to stiffle my giggles so as not to disturb the guy sitting across from me dutifully reading his BoM...</p>\n<p>There are quite a few references to the different writings of Swedenborg throughout the story, and I\'m rather intrigued.</p>\n<p>Has anyone read his stuff?</p>\n<hr />\n<p>rutabaga<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nI haven\'t read anything but found this once upon a time.<br />\nIts kind of random, but contains some good info.</p>\n<p><a href=\"http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/hh05.html\" title=\"http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/hh05.html\">http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/hh05.html</a></p>\n<p>Where did Joseph Smith get his ideas for the Mormon concept of heaven?<br />\n\"At its worst, heaven can be an \'effective tool for manipulation,\' says Paul Knitter, emeritus professor of theology at Xavier University in Cincinnati. \"If you can get people to believe in a certain heaven, you can get them to do anything.\' David Koresh told his followers in Waco that if they died with him, they would go directly to heaven.\"<br />\n- Why We Need Heaven, Newsweek, Aug. 12, 2002<br />\nSome have wondered where Smith got his descriptions of the afterlife as first described in Section 76 of the D&amp;C.<br />\nIn D. Michael Quinn\'s excellent book \"Early Mormonism and the Magic World View,\" he gives a very fascinating source of Smith\'s \"revelations\" on the afterlife. Quinn offers an exhaustive examination of the sources for the 1832 D&amp;C Section 76 \"Vision\" of the \"three degrees of glory.\"</p>\n<p>In fact, Smith\'s description of the \"Celestial Kingdom\" was not only a copy from earlier written works, but also very controversial to the Latter-Day Saints.</p>\n<p>The diaries of Orson Pratt and John Murdock from the 1830\'s record their efforts to reassure members who questioned the 1832 vision of heaven. The two men described countless excommunications of Mormons, including branch presidents, who denounced \"the degrees of glory\" as a \"satanic revelation.\" Even Brigham Young had a hard time with it at first and described it as \"a trial to many.\"</p>\n<p>Why were faithful Mormons choking on this idea of three heavens?</p>\n<p>Quinn explains that it\'s because members correctly recognized it as coming from the occult. The only other sources of separate degrees in heaven came from occult writers of Smith\'s time.</p>\n<p>For example, in 1758 a man by the name of Emanuel Swedenborg wrote a book about his visions of the afterlife. Swedenborg insisted: \"There are three heavens,\" described as \"entirely distinct from each other.\" He called the highest heaven \"the Celestial Kingdom,\" and stated that the inhabitants of the three heavens corresponded to the \"sun, moon and stars.\"</p>\n<p>By Joseph Smith\'s own statements, he was familiar with Swedenborg\'s writings. Smith told a convert by the name of Edward Hunter that \"Emanuel Swedenborg had a view of the world to come, but for daily food he perished.\"</p>\n<p>I was so fascinated by the connection that Quinn documented, that I bought a copy of Swedenborg\'s book myself from Amazon.com. It\'s called \"Heaven and Its Wonders and Hell and was written way before Joseph Smith. Yet it describes the three Mormon degrees of glory quite well.<br />\nNot only does Quinn make a strong case that Smith knew all about Swedenborg\'s ideas, but he also shows that his book \"Heaven and Hell and Its Wonders\" was a book in Smith\'s hometown library since 1817. Quinn also writes that \"Nine miles from Smith\'s farm, in 1826 the Canandaigua newspaper also advertised Swedenborg\'s book for sale. The bookstore offered Swedenborg\'s publications for as little as 37 cents.\"</p>\n<p>If you ever want to know details about the Mormon afterlife, read Swedenborg\'s book. Smith liberally plagiarized from it to come up with his D&amp;C \"visions\" of the celestial, telestial and terrestrial kingdoms. But Swedenborg\'s works are definitely the originals.<br />\nIn fact, a faithful Mormon and scholar Craig Miller has also written on this subject in a paper titled \"Did Swedenborg Influence Mormon Doctrine?.\" Miller lists 19 unique similarities between Swendenborg\'s fictional \"Celestial Kingdom\" and that of Joseph Smith.<br />\nSee for yourself.<br />\nYou can also read some of Swedenborg\'s books online. Here is the book \"Heaven and Its Wonders and Hell\" From Things Heard and Seen:</p>\n<p><a href=\"http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/\" title=\"http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/\">http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/</a></p>\n<p>If you go to the main page, there is more on who Emanuel Swedenborg was and other links:</p>\n<p><a href=\"http://swedenborg.newearth.org/\" title=\"http://swedenborg.newearth.org/\">http://swedenborg.newearth.org/</a></p>\n<hr />\n<p>Heresy<br />\nCraig Miller\'s article<br />\n<a href=\"http://craigwmiller.tripod.com/interest.htm\" title=\"http://craigwmiller.tripod.com/interest.htm\">http://craigwmiller.tripod.com/interest.htm</a></p>\n<p>Some items on his list of Swedenborg\'s ideas:</p>\n<p>1 Three levels of heaven<br />\n2 Three heavens in the CK<br />\n3 Priesthood robes are worn in heavenly marriage ceremonies<br />\n4 You must be married in heaven to inherit the highest heaven<br />\n5.The world of spirits is a place of preparation for either heaven or perdition<br />\n6 There are angles who communicate between heavens<br />\n7 The 3 kingdoms are like sun, moon, stars<br />\n8.The church that Christ established has passed from the Earth</p>\n<p>Sound familiar?</p>\n<hr />\n<p>jw the inquizzinator<br />\nCouple of Swedenborg links<br />\n<a href=\"http://www.theisticscience.org/books/dlw/dlw.html\" title=\"http://www.theisticscience.org/books/dlw/dlw.html\">http://www.theisticscience.org/books/dlw/dlw.html</a></p>\n<p><a href=\"http://www.theisticscience.org/books/hh/hh00toc.html\" title=\"http://www.theisticscience.org/books/hh/hh00toc.html\">http://www.theisticscience.org/books/hh/hh00toc.html</a> This is the most interesting, IMHO</p>\n<hr />\nJesus Smith<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nThe kindle app is nice, but try Stanza. It is a much better reader. I\'m now on android and miss stanza (aldiko is almost as good).\n<p>One thing Swedenborg is useful for is to illustrate that there are many others out there that claim prophetic ability and have as good (or bad) track record as JS. The hindu guy Saytha Sai Baba performs miracles. Edgar Cayce supposedly prophesied accurately (and inaccurately) on several occasions. and so on. There\'s no mormon cornering on claiming prophetic proficiency...</p>\n<hr />\nMemphis Mizraim<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nHelen Keller was a follower of Swedenborg.<br />\nThere was once a Swedenborgian rite of Freemasonry.\n<hr />\nWondering<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nThat\'d be interesting to learn more about. Do tell.\n<hr />\nCristina<br />\nSwedenborg was famous in New England<br />\nSwendenborg was being discussed in New England at least by educated people at the time when it was ablaze with religious fervor. Ralph Waldo Emerson, a contemporary of Joseph Smith\'s wrote about Swendenborg calling him \"the Mystic\" in 1850. I think Joseph Smith (and Rigdon and Cowdery) were fully aware of his \"mystic\" teachings at the time they came up with the \"restored gospel.\" Rigdon and Cowdery were well educated even if Joseph was not.\n<p><a href=\"http://www.emersoncentral.com/swedenborg.htm\" title=\"http://www.emersoncentral.com/swedenborg.htm\">http://www.emersoncentral.com/swedenborg.htm</a></p>\n<hr />\nanagrammy<br />\nThanks, Foggy, very interesting thread\n<hr />\n<p>temple name Julia<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nIn an old tarot book I ran acrossed the phrase \'urim and thumin\'! Quite a shock! In this old occult tome it simply meant the phases of the moon together! lol</p>\n<hr />\nJustinCase<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nPerhaps the author would be so kind as to include the references to Brigham and others as their having a trial to much on the three degrees of glory. It is an easy claim to make with no references to back it up.\n<hr />\n<p>RPackham<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nSwedenborg also taught that true marriage was eternal (but it was strictly monogamous).</p>\n<p>Swedenborg claimed that all his information was given to him by angel visitors.</p>\n<p>Joseph Smith\'s conversation (mentioned in another post on this thread) with Edward Hunter was about Swedenborg because Hunter was a Swedenborgian before he became a Mormon.</p>\n<hr />\nhello<br />\nRe: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg<br />\nSwedenborgian freemasonry? How cool is that?\n<p>\"Recovery from Mormonism - www.exmormon.org\"</p>\n', created = 1490632540, expire = 1490718940, headers = '', serialized = 0 WHERE cid = '2:dc04edf864b9a9a52f775199c72efc4e' in /home/exmormon/public_html/d6/drupal/includes/cache.inc on line 112.

by foggy 2012

For example, in 1758 a man by the name of Emanuel Swedenborg wrote a book about his visions of the afterlife. Swedenborg insisted: "There are three heavens," described as "entirely distinct from each other." He called the highest heaven "the Celestial Kingdom," and stated that the inhabitants of the three heavens corresponded to the "sun, moon and stars."

Since I ride either the bus or train to and from work every day, the Kindle app on my iphone has become my favorite thing.

Right now I'm working my way through a long list of the writings of Honore de Balzac that I got for free from amazon.

Imagine my entertainment and surprise while reading 'Seraphita' when not only running across such familiar words as 'urim and thummim' but having one of the main characters make the comment that "in reading [Swedenborg] men either miss his meaning or become Seers like him."

I had to stiffle my giggles so as not to disturb the guy sitting across from me dutifully reading his BoM...

There are quite a few references to the different writings of Swedenborg throughout the story, and I'm rather intrigued.

Has anyone read his stuff?


rutabaga
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
I haven't read anything but found this once upon a time.
Its kind of random, but contains some good info.

http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/hh05.html

Where did Joseph Smith get his ideas for the Mormon concept of heaven?
"At its worst, heaven can be an 'effective tool for manipulation,' says Paul Knitter, emeritus professor of theology at Xavier University in Cincinnati. "If you can get people to believe in a certain heaven, you can get them to do anything.' David Koresh told his followers in Waco that if they died with him, they would go directly to heaven."
- Why We Need Heaven, Newsweek, Aug. 12, 2002
Some have wondered where Smith got his descriptions of the afterlife as first described in Section 76 of the D&C.
In D. Michael Quinn's excellent book "Early Mormonism and the Magic World View," he gives a very fascinating source of Smith's "revelations" on the afterlife. Quinn offers an exhaustive examination of the sources for the 1832 D&C Section 76 "Vision" of the "three degrees of glory."

In fact, Smith's description of the "Celestial Kingdom" was not only a copy from earlier written works, but also very controversial to the Latter-Day Saints.

The diaries of Orson Pratt and John Murdock from the 1830's record their efforts to reassure members who questioned the 1832 vision of heaven. The two men described countless excommunications of Mormons, including branch presidents, who denounced "the degrees of glory" as a "satanic revelation." Even Brigham Young had a hard time with it at first and described it as "a trial to many."

Why were faithful Mormons choking on this idea of three heavens?

Quinn explains that it's because members correctly recognized it as coming from the occult. The only other sources of separate degrees in heaven came from occult writers of Smith's time.

For example, in 1758 a man by the name of Emanuel Swedenborg wrote a book about his visions of the afterlife. Swedenborg insisted: "There are three heavens," described as "entirely distinct from each other." He called the highest heaven "the Celestial Kingdom," and stated that the inhabitants of the three heavens corresponded to the "sun, moon and stars."

By Joseph Smith's own statements, he was familiar with Swedenborg's writings. Smith told a convert by the name of Edward Hunter that "Emanuel Swedenborg had a view of the world to come, but for daily food he perished."

I was so fascinated by the connection that Quinn documented, that I bought a copy of Swedenborg's book myself from Amazon.com. It's called "Heaven and Its Wonders and Hell and was written way before Joseph Smith. Yet it describes the three Mormon degrees of glory quite well.
Not only does Quinn make a strong case that Smith knew all about Swedenborg's ideas, but he also shows that his book "Heaven and Hell and Its Wonders" was a book in Smith's hometown library since 1817. Quinn also writes that "Nine miles from Smith's farm, in 1826 the Canandaigua newspaper also advertised Swedenborg's book for sale. The bookstore offered Swedenborg's publications for as little as 37 cents."

If you ever want to know details about the Mormon afterlife, read Swedenborg's book. Smith liberally plagiarized from it to come up with his D&C "visions" of the celestial, telestial and terrestrial kingdoms. But Swedenborg's works are definitely the originals.
In fact, a faithful Mormon and scholar Craig Miller has also written on this subject in a paper titled "Did Swedenborg Influence Mormon Doctrine?." Miller lists 19 unique similarities between Swendenborg's fictional "Celestial Kingdom" and that of Joseph Smith.
See for yourself.
You can also read some of Swedenborg's books online. Here is the book "Heaven and Its Wonders and Hell" From Things Heard and Seen:

http://swedenborg.newearth.org/hh/

If you go to the main page, there is more on who Emanuel Swedenborg was and other links:

http://swedenborg.newearth.org/


Heresy
Craig Miller's article
http://craigwmiller.tripod.com/interest.htm

Some items on his list of Swedenborg's ideas:

1 Three levels of heaven
2 Three heavens in the CK
3 Priesthood robes are worn in heavenly marriage ceremonies
4 You must be married in heaven to inherit the highest heaven
5.The world of spirits is a place of preparation for either heaven or perdition
6 There are angles who communicate between heavens
7 The 3 kingdoms are like sun, moon, stars
8.The church that Christ established has passed from the Earth

Sound familiar?


jw the inquizzinator
Couple of Swedenborg links
http://www.theisticscience.org/books/dlw/dlw.html

http://www.theisticscience.org/books/hh/hh00toc.html This is the most interesting, IMHO


Jesus Smith
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
The kindle app is nice, but try Stanza. It is a much better reader. I'm now on android and miss stanza (aldiko is almost as good).

One thing Swedenborg is useful for is to illustrate that there are many others out there that claim prophetic ability and have as good (or bad) track record as JS. The hindu guy Saytha Sai Baba performs miracles. Edgar Cayce supposedly prophesied accurately (and inaccurately) on several occasions. and so on. There's no mormon cornering on claiming prophetic proficiency...


Memphis Mizraim
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
Helen Keller was a follower of Swedenborg.
There was once a Swedenborgian rite of Freemasonry.
Wondering
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
That'd be interesting to learn more about. Do tell.
Cristina
Swedenborg was famous in New England
Swendenborg was being discussed in New England at least by educated people at the time when it was ablaze with religious fervor. Ralph Waldo Emerson, a contemporary of Joseph Smith's wrote about Swendenborg calling him "the Mystic" in 1850. I think Joseph Smith (and Rigdon and Cowdery) were fully aware of his "mystic" teachings at the time they came up with the "restored gospel." Rigdon and Cowdery were well educated even if Joseph was not.

http://www.emersoncentral.com/swedenborg.htm


anagrammy
Thanks, Foggy, very interesting thread

temple name Julia
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
In an old tarot book I ran acrossed the phrase 'urim and thumin'! Quite a shock! In this old occult tome it simply meant the phases of the moon together! lol


JustinCase
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
Perhaps the author would be so kind as to include the references to Brigham and others as their having a trial to much on the three degrees of glory. It is an easy claim to make with no references to back it up.

RPackham
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
Swedenborg also taught that true marriage was eternal (but it was strictly monogamous).

Swedenborg claimed that all his information was given to him by angel visitors.

Joseph Smith's conversation (mentioned in another post on this thread) with Edward Hunter was about Swedenborg because Hunter was a Swedenborgian before he became a Mormon.


hello
Re: Ran across an interesting quote about Swedenborg
Swedenborgian freemasonry? How cool is that?

"Recovery from Mormonism - www.exmormon.org"