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Philosophical Perspectives

The Five Ages

The Five Ages

A new book By Swedenborg! Well, not exactly, but this may be the nearest thing to it. Swedenborg died in 1772, aged 84, not long after having completed his extensive "The True Christian Religion", but had he lived on , what might he have published next? Actually the last unpublished manuscript of any length he left behind was "The Coronis" which sadly is no longer extant, except for an imperfect and incomplete copy. It describes five ages or 'Churches", as he calls them. A world history, but a spiritual or psychological history, not a political or social history, although it does touch on social matters. In the Coronis, and in earlier works, Swedenborg explores a theme that can be found in most mythologies, the idea of the "world ages".

The Greeks and Romans called them the Golden Age, Silver Age, The Bronze Age and the Iron Age. Hindu mythology talks of the four "yugas"; an idea developed by Buddhism. In the structure of the Bible one can discern similar periods initiated by Adam, Noah, Moses, Christ and the new age foretold in the Book of Revelation. Mohammed had a very similar pattern of "six great prophets" and St. Augustine had "seven ages". You will find more versions in Norse, Persian, Aztec and other myths. Nowhere, however will you find a treatment of the theme as extensive and detailed as Swedenborg's. Swedenborg's thoughts on these matters are scattered throughout several of his books, but are here brought together in one volume. We are told of mankind's psychological development through the ages and how God accommodated His revelation to suit us. You will learn nothing about kings and battles, but will come to understand the underlying spiritual basis of the developing pattern of world history. The passages from Swedenborg have been compiled by Patrick Johnson who has added a commentary to help continuity. He also offers notes showing how well Swedenborg's ideas fit in with historical and archaeological knowledge gathered since his time. Patrick Johnson has been interested in History and Swedenborg all his life and has been the editor of two Swedenborgian magazines. A retired Architect, he was fortunate to spend the latter years of his career with an English Heritage, exploring and caring for the structures people inhabited through the ages.

1 -The Five Churches or Ages
2 - The Nature of the Church
3 - The Most Ancient Church
4 - The Ancient Churches
5 - The Second Ancient Church
6 - The Israelite and Jewish Churches
7 - The Christian Church
8 - The New Church
Appendix. World Age Patterns
Select Bibliography
Index of Quotations

Hardcover: 268 pages
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0854481540
ISBN-13: 978-0854481545
Product Dimensions 7.5 X 9 X .5
Shipping weight: .35 Kg


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