Secrets of Heaven Vol. 1: New Century Edition
By Emanuel Swedenborg
Translated by Lisa Hyatt Cooper
Foreword by Wouter J. Hanegraaff
Secrets of Heaven is a verse-by-verse exposition on the books of Genesis and Exodus. In volume 1, Swedenborg describes the inner meaning of the creation story. Read more
Deluxe hardcover, paperback, and e-book, 768 pages
Portable paperback and e-book, 551 pages
The New Century Edition is printed in two different editions:
Contains all of the introductions, notes, and supplemental materials. Secrets of Heaven is available as a deluxe hardcover and paperback.
Smaller paperbacks that include the complete text of the translations, but none of the introductions, notes, or other supplemental materials.
Secrets of Heaven is a verse-by-verse exposition of Genesis and Exodus, showing the correspondences (connections through symbol between the material and spiritual world) in which, according to Swedenborg’s analysis, the Bible is written. Each chapter includes embedded sections describing Swedenborg’s spiritual experiences and expounding his theological views.
This book series is Swedenborg’s largest and in many ways most challenging title, but it contains abundant points of interest to reward the adventurous reader. In addition to a deep exploration of biblical inner meaning, it presents Swedenborg’s transcendent visions of heaven and correspondingly horrific views of hell; his reports on the process of dying and entering life after death; his spiritual anthropology (specifically, his descriptions of the spiritual state of the earliest people); and his views on many other topics, including the correspondences of the organs and systems of the human body, the theory of a higher and more perfect level of memory above our conscious memory, the existence and nature of human life on other planets, the dual nature of visions and dreams, and the nature of the human mind and its developmental stages.
Volume 1 covers Genesis 1–8, in which Swedenborg describes the inner meaning of the creation story, the fall of Adam and Eve, and Noah’s deliverance from the flood. He understands the days of creation as an image of the stages of human spiritual transformation; Adam and Eve as symbols for the earliest ancient “church,” a people who eventually fell away from God; and Noah as a symbol of the good individuals who were spared from the evil thinking that flooded human minds during that decline. Interspersed with Swedenborg’s explorations of these narratives are his accounts of stages in the transition to the afterlife. He also describes the nature of the soul after death and the joy experienced in heaven, before concluding with descriptions of hell.
“With regard to Swedenborg’s Secrets of Heaven, there never was a time more pressing than now to understand that the internal spiritual meaning of the Christian Bible refers not to the special dispensation of one sect, but to the evolution of a higher spiritual consciousness within each individual.”
—Eugene Taylor, Ph.D., director of the Cambridge Institute of Psychology and Religion.
About the New Century Edition
The New Century Edition of the Works of Emanuel Swedenborg presents a modern-language, scholarly translation of Swedenborg’s theological works. The series’ easy-to-read style retains the dignity, variety, clarity, and gender-inclusive language of Swedenborg’s original Latin, bringing his thought to life. Introductions and annotations by eminent, international scholars place Swedenborg’s writings in their historical context and illuminate obscure references within the text, enabling readers to understand and trace Swedenborg’s influence as never before.
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