George de Charms

From the College lectures of Bishop de Charms, 1942


This material was originally given as lectures by Bishop George de Charms. It was part of the first year of his two year course, Growth of the Mind, which he offered in the Academy College over a period of years. These particular lectures were given during the school year 1941-42. Mrs. Raymond Pitcairn arranged to have them taken down in shorthand by Mrs. Avery. They were then transcribed and a limited number of copies circulated.

The present reproduction is made from a selection of lectures of that year which are not so fully covered in the printed volume of Growth of the Mind. The members of the General Church Schools Committee believe that many people in the Church today will be served by having access to this worthwhile and inspiring material about the philosophy of New Church education.

There has been a small amount of editing of these lectures, done by Nancy Woodard. While it may lack some final professional polish, we trust that the present form will serve the purpose of a wider sharing of this valuable material.

The General Church Schools Committee
Nancy H. Woodard
Yorvar E. Synnestvedt
Frederick L. Schnarr, Chairman

April, 1979


Section One               -       The Conscious Mind

Chapter 1        -       Consciousness Results from the Meeting of

                            Two Worlds                                   1

Chapter 2       -       The Internal and External Sensories                            6

Section Two               -       The Philosophy of Education              

Chapter 1       -       The Relation of Secular and Religious Education              15

Chapter 2       -       A Definition of Education                                   20

Summary Chart Successive Limitations in the Definition of Education                     31

Diagram and

Summary       -       The Interplay of Education Influences on the Child              32

Chapter 3       -       Formal Education                                          33

Chapter 4       -       Religious Education                                   38

Chapter 5       -       Remains                                                 41

Chapter 6       -       Secular Education                                   47

Chapter 7       -       New Church Education                                   52

Chapter 8       -       Vocational Training                                   57

Summary       -       The Effect of New Church Education on the

                            Definition of Education                            61

Chapter 9       -       Learning and The Affections                            62

References       -       Learn, Teach, Food                                   70

Chapter 10       -       The Divine End or Purpose in Education                     72

Section Three       -       The Ultimate Aims of Education

Chapter 1       -       Free Choice                                          76

References       -       Free Will, Choose                                   84

Chart              -       Instruction Deals with the Plane of Choice;

                            Education with Its Direction                     85

Chapter 2       -       True Rationality as a Goal of Education                     86

References       -       The Rational                                          92

Chapter 3       -       Conscience                                          93

References       -       Conscience                                          104

Chapter 4       -       Character                                          105

References       -       Temptation                                          111

Chapter 5       -       The New Church Concept of Use                            112

Chapter 6       -       Every Occupation Has a Spiritual Value                     123

Section Four       -       The Philosophy of Natural Learning

Chapter 1       -       The Natural and the Spiritual                            129

Chapter 2       -       The Ordering of Knowledges                            134

Chapter 3       -       The Opening of the Three Degrees of the

                            Natural Mind                                   140

Chapter 4       -       The Purpose of All Teaching is Spiritual                     146

Chapter 5       -       The Direct and Indirect Use of Revelation in

                            New Church Education                            152

Chapter 6       -       New Church Philosophy of Subject Matter                     156

Section Five       -       The Direct Use of Revelation

Chapter 1       -       Correspondences                                          164

References       -       Correspondences                                          170

Chapter 2       -       Correspondence, Representation, Signification              171

Chapter 3       -       The Doctrine of Genuine Truth                            175

References       -       Doctrine                                                 178

Chapter 4       -       Authority and Doctrine                                   179

Chapter 5       -       The Use of Memorable Relations                            185

Chapter 6       -       The Use of the Letter of the Word in Teaching              191



Section One
Chapter One


The whole of Swedenborgs theory about the mind rests on the hypothesis that there are two worlds - a natural world and a spiritual world. Unless there were two worlds there could be no such thing as consciousness, for every conscious sensation consists of two things - a perception of form and a perception of quality. The perception of form comes from the natural world; the perception of quality from the spiritual world. These two things cannot exist apart from one another. We cannot have any perception of form that is not accompanied by a perception of quality. It is the same as saying that we cannot have consciousness that doesnt result from a meeting of two forces - those from the spiritual world and those from the natural world. Perception of quality is what we call affection, and we must remember that there are distinct degrees of sensation or perception. We begin with the sensations of the body, and from these we derive imaginations in the thought, and finally perceptions. There are affections that are associated with each one of these different kinds of mental activity. Indeed, if it were not for the affection there would be no sensation on any of those planes. By affection we mean a sense of delight or undelight. Everything that affects our senses from without is perceived as agreeable or disagreeable, as giving pleasure or pain in some degree. When the affection is one of delight then at once the whole system of the mind is opened to it. There is an effort, an endeavor, to retain that sensation or to regain it and repeat it and increase its power. But when the affection is undelightful, disagreeable, or painful, then at once there is a closing of all the vessels of the mind against it - an effort to avoid it, to shut it out, escape from it. That is the mainspring of all our actions - of everything we call the will. What we will, what we want, is always prompted by some affection that is delightful, or on the other hand by some affection that is undelightful, that makes us want to get away from it. So when we speak of the affections we are speaking of the will. When we are speaking of sensations - perception of form - we are speaking of the understanding. These two things are what make the mind and its life - will and understanding, affection and thought.

Now what about these different degrees of sensation and the affections that belong to them? The lowest are the corporeal sensations. Merely the touch with the forces and objects of nature around about us affects the body and its life. These are felt as delightful or undelightful, according to whether they are in harmony with the life of the body or against it. We may perceive them sweet, sour, soft or hard, rough or smooth, warm or cold, melodious or discordant. Every one of the senses reacts instinctively with pleasure to something that is in harmony with the body, and with pain to something that is out of harmony with it. This we have in common with animals for this is what is the root of animal instinct. All animals have an instinctive recognition of things that are in accord with their life and an ability to distinguish them from things that are against their life. Man has not that instinct. For the most part we have to learn what is in accord with our life and what is against it. Nonetheless, we do have a sense of pleasure or of displeasure, according to whether things hurt us - injure our body - or not.



We live, however, more on the plane of imagination and that modifies very greatly our physical reactions to pain or pleasure. Imagination gives us the ability to picture in our minds same end or purpose or desire and hold it there - cultivate it - and seek to attain it. Children begin it with, what we call daydreaming, picturing themselves in situations in which they would like to be. A childs play is all that. He is always playing that he is this, that, or the other thing he would like to be. Imagination is delightful and we go on with that kind of play throughout. Life, only we change the things that we think are delightful. That is all. All ambitions of grown-up people are of a similar nature. They imagine pictures of things that they would like to become or do, and holding that picture in the mind opens all the faculties to grasp everything that would lead to that attainment and to draw in from the world around it every sensation that would help to achieve it. We may imagine that we want to win a game - dream about it sometime; imagine that we become rich or famous, or that we are successful in any field of activity that we may choose, and because this affection of the imagination is more powerful than the mere physical sensations of pleasure or displeasure, then for the sake of this higher delight we are willing to undergo much physical hardship - displeasure - pain. We are willing to train our muscles if we are tired in order that we may achieve the end of our imagination. We are willing to work hard and persistently, to give up external pleasures of the body for the sake of our work. Because of the imagination we have the picture of a higher delight that means more to us than the pleasures of the body, and this picturing in the imagination is what determines our sense of free choice; these affections of the imagination guide our life.

Now there is something deeper than that. There are affections of thought or of reason that go beyond any concrete achievement of more lasting pleasure or delight such as we have pictured in the imagination. They seek abstract ends, look to moral virtues, to honesty, justice, what is honorable and upright, and that is a still greater delight, a still more powerful affection. For the sake of that higher achievement - what men have called self-respect - men will suffer hard things; they will give up not only their physical pleasures but their ambitions and hopes for the achievement of their imaginary desires. They will suffer even death to protect their sense of honor. That would not be so unless man were endowed with tin affection for these abstract things stronger than his physical and imaginative affections. We should note that this affection of the reason or thought may be either for the sake of self or for the sake of our use to others. A man may cling to a sense of honor and justice fort the sake of what others think of him - not to lose the regard or respect of others because that is necessary to the attainment of his real end, which may be one of the imagination or a question of wealth or power or reputation or external success.

Affections of reason that are prompted by self-interest are what produce that which the Writings call the animus, or external mind. And these same affections of reason or of thought that are prompted by a regard for Divine Law and a concern for use and service to other produce the mind that is called the mens. These two minds appear almost exactly the same externally. They lead to the same kind of reactions so that we cannot tell with reference to other persons whether they are activated by the animus or the mens. They do the same thing. Both would stand far what is just and right and honorable, and one would do it for the sake of selfish purposes and the other would do it for the sake of an unselfish purpose.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 4 We cannot tell the difference in outward appearance. But there is a great difference in internal appearance, in internal actuality, because in the one case everything that activates a person is the attainment of some natural, worldly, external end of the imagination, and so it is all prompted from without; whereas; in the other case what is back of it is the affection of the pure intellect, the affection coming from a perception of spiritual truth from the Word - the delight of seeing and understanding spiritual truth and good from the Word. This is a delight in heavenly and eternal ends, ends and purposes that are in accord with the order and life of God. They lead to a love of good and of truth for their own sake, not for the sake of self. From them comes the ability to distinguish between what from what is false. This is the origin of that ability to see what is axiomatic - above reason or logic.

Now let us note that this ability to recognize what is right and wrong, to see truth and recognize it as truth, underlies all of these affections. It is this that makes us human and distinguishes human beings from animals. Animals have corporeal sensation and their delights are affected by them in accord with the order of their life, but they have no ability to distinguish right from wrong. They have no perception of truth and good, but only of what is harmonious and satisfying to their bodily appetites. Man only has this ability and it is to him just what the instincts are to animals. Man is born for a spiritual life. He is born to live in a spiritual world and he is endowed therefore with the ability to recognize what is in accord with the order of that spiritual world, just as animals, born merely to live in the natural world, are born with the ability to recognize what is in accord with their natural life. This ability to distinguish between right and wrong, to perceive truth, is the secret of all ability to learn, to develop what we call the mind, on every plane. It is the secret of our ability to speak, to talk. The ability to learn depends upon the fact that man is endowed inmostly with an affection of truth. He can be affected by truth and feel it as delightful. If it were not so then he would be; unable to acquire knowledge, to build up intellectual understanding, for all learning has its origin in an affection. We know this from trying to teach. Unless we can stir an interest which is an affection and delight, we cannot teach. We may tell but not teach, because the degree to which people learn depends upon the degree to which they are able to be affected from within by delight.

That ability to be affected with delight is native with everybody, present even with little babies, but it becomes conscious only gradually. Little babies are affected with delights - heavenly delights, spiritual delights - but they dont know it. They are conscious only of corporeal delights and undelights - the delights and undelights of the body - nothing else. Within these there are heavenly delights of which they are unconscious, but that nonetheless lead them on, lead them to look for something more, and therefore open their minds to learn to grow. If it were not for the presence of those heavenly delights within their bodily delights they would not develop any more than animals do. The heavenly delights are there because of the fact that they have an internal mind, a pure intellect which is affected by spiritual things at the same time as the body and the brain are affected by material things.



The consciousness of this spiritual affection, the ability to distinguish it and separate it from purely physical sensations, grows only gradually with little children. At first a little baby just knows bodily sensations as delights. Later on he begins to develop imagination and becomes conscious of those higher delights that are on the plane of the imagination, delights which come from the ability to picture in his mind things that are not immediately around him. And as he grows older still there comes the ability to picture abstract things and thus to develop thought and to become conscious of the delights of thought. Finally with the opening of his spiritual life at adult age, there begins to be consciousness of spiritual delights, the sensations of pure intellect, and so the mind develops step by step in accord with the quality of the soul that was present from the beginning. Where there is an animal soul we may have all the senses (sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell), may come in contact with all the objects of the outer world, but there will be no affection that will lead from that external sensation to any understanding, to any introduction into a higher delight or life. But where there is a human soul, that human soul insinuates its delights even into those of the senses and makes the purely physical sensations unsatisfying in themselves, leads us to want something more, to look for something deeper. Thus we can learn. The human mind can be instructed and grow and develop.

Now that shows that sensations are not merely perception of the forms of things around us, but that the perception of those forms may be altogether different according to the affection that comes from within, That is the reason why babies will react so differently hum animals to the same sensations; the reason why different people will react so differently to the same sensations; the reason why we ourselves at different times may react very differently to the same sensations. We may develop very strong feelings about things that are not at all, to be explained by the things themselves. The values we set on objects are entirely apart from their economic value. The meaning they have for us may be entirely different from the meaning they have for someone else. How do we explain that? If we take for granted that the mind is just built up by what comes there from without and that is all there is, there would be no explanation for these differences in the way we react to the same things. We would always feel the same way about similar things, but we dont. Of course, we might consider that our reactions would differ according to our physical state, and so they do with animals, we might not feel exactly the same towards something we are very fond of immediately after a meal, or we might not feel the same towards things before breakfast in the morning, or according to our physical state. But what I am referring to is not that at all, but the difference in our mental reaction that is caused by moods, mental, states that cannot he explained by anything in our external environment but that are the inevitable result of internal forces acting on us somewhere. The only explanation that satisfies the facts is to recognize that there is another world from which those forces originate, that we are in contact with it, and that our minds are being affected by forces from that world as well as from this world. If we realize this to be the case, then we can understand and explain rationally these differences in our reactions to the world around us.

That is the essence of Swedenborgs whole philosophy of the mind which begins with the postulate that there are two worlds and from that postulate explains what we see, what we feel, experience in our mental life.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 6 If there is no other world, whence a sense of justice, uprightness or honor? Certainly not from any physical sensation - not from any material object or natural force. There is no possibility of supposing that such things could produce what we call a sense of justice. It must come from something else, and according to the philosophy of the New Church it comes from the fact that God is love, that the spiritual sun, which is the first of His creation, is pure love; that that sun shines with the light of truth and warmth of love upon human spirits and minds of men and angels, and that it conveys to them the ability to see and feel spiritual things, just as the light and heat of the natural sun enables them to live in a material world and sense the things of nature. This perception of spiritual things is what comes to our consciousness as a sense of honor, justice, uprightness, as a recognition of what is true as against what is false, as an ability to understand abstract things, and as a delight in this understanding of abstract things that is stronger and more powerful than the physical delights that come to us from the world.

Now if that is true it gives a reasonable explanation of our mental phenomena. If it is not true we still have no explanation, for there is nothing that has ever been discovered about the material world and its forces playing upon the senses of our body that could possibly produce this sense of justice or ability to understand. Now that means that according to Swedenborgs philosophy, the mind of man is not a simple or single organ, but a dual one. We have a mind that is able to sense spiritual things and a mind that is able to sense natural things, and these two minds always operate together.



Section One
Chapter Two



Now we want to speak especially of the implications for mental life involved in the fact that there are two worlds. Just what does it mean? There are two worlds, we are told, a spiritual world and a natural world. To say there are two worlds involves that there must be two kinds of activity for, after all, a world is nothing but: a collection of forces, of activities and objects, and when we analyze objects we find they are nothing but forces bound up. Take apart anything in the world, trace it down to its least units, and find that it consists of protons and electrons in activity and motion and nothing else, so that scientists have been unable to ascribe any properties to these units except those of force or energy or activity itself. So two worlds mean two kinds of activity, two kinds of force or energy. If there were only one kind then there would be only one world. Now if there are two kinds of activity (and mental life is the response or reception of activity) then there must be two distinct organs of the mind, one to receive one kind of activity and one to receive the other. The philosophy of Swedenborg is that there must be two distinct organs to receive, two distinct kinds of activity.

All the activities of nature, all the forces - energies of nature - have their origin in the sun, which, it is said, is pure fire. All the activities of the spiritual world have their origin in the spiritual sun, which is said to be pure love. So if we would make a definite distinction between these two kinds of activity, we would say one is a vibration or a motion through space, whereas the other is an emotion and love. Now the human body is nothing but an organ formed to respond to all the different varieties of natural forces. We have, therefore, the organs of sensation - the eye that is formed to be moved by the waves in the ether, and the ear that is formed to respond to the wave motions in the air. Smell is a perception of the qualities of particles floating in the air. Taste is the perception of the form and quality of the particles floating in liquid, and touch, which is the lowest of all, is the contact or perception of the form and quality of grosser substances, of more ponderable objects. Therefore the body, which includes all these five senses, is an organ formed to respond to all the different kinds of activity that we find in nature, and while the body is formed to respond to these, the brain is formed to sense them - to perceive them. The brain or the cortex is called, therefore, the common sensory. It is to this that the nerves go from all the senses of the body, and where they are all combined so that we can associate what we see with what we hear, taste, smell, and touch, and form what we call ideas that are made up from all the senses. Thus the brain cortex is the common sensory, and specifically an organic sense that comes in the last analysis to that little membrane that surrounds each cortical cell that we have called the surface of mutations, because there is where all the changes or mutations take place. These changes are produced by every impulse from the outer world of whatever kind, whether it by sight, hearing, smell, touch or taste - they all end here at this little membrane, and by changing the form of that membrane produce what we call sensations.

This has to do with the body and the reception of all sensations from the outer world in the same way.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 8 On the other hand, the simple fibre is an organ formed to receive mutations according to all the forces or activities of the spiritual world. It is not so simple, although we call it the simple fibre. This simple fibre, therefore, is in its relation to the spiritual world - the world of activity that proceeds from the sun of heaven which is pure love - as is the body with its five senses to the natural world and all the forces that proceed from the natural sun. Now that simple fibre is organized as a little brain with thousands and thousands of little cells within it, each one called a simple cortex; organized into connections there, so that the whole thing is a least brain. It is there in the simple cortex, that the vibrations, the activities, of the spiritual world may be perceived and become sensations.

Let us note, however, that what comes from the outer world and strikes the little membrane moves it and changes it. That is the very ground and basis of all natural sensations, but we dont feel it. That is above our consciousness. We are not conscious of any pure vibration from without. Consciousness arises when these two come together and every conscious sensation is a combination of something from without and something from within, and we perceive them together and call it one thing - sensation. There is no sensation that comes purely from the material world, and there is no sensation that comes purely from the spiritual world. The two must be conjoined. That is the reason why it is said that the two worlds are a double world and the human mind is a dual mind. All our consciousness arises from the conjunction o the forces from the spiritual world meeting the forces from the natural world. If there were only one world, and if the mind were a single thing as is supposed by many scientific thinkers, there would be no such thing as consciousness and could be no such thing as consciousness.

Consciousness is possible only because there are two worlds and only because there is a dual mind, or organ. This leads to many very interesting things about psychology and gives us quite a different made of interesting the actual experience of mutual life. But before I speak of that, I wanted to call attention to this fact: because all consciousness requires the combination of these we never live entirely in one world or in the other. While we are living on earth we are continually receiving influx from the spiritual world, and after we die and go into the other world we must be continually receiving afflux from the natural world. That has to do with the thing - the very mysterious thing - spoken of in the few places in the Writings and has caused so much discussion among us, called the limbus or cutaneous envelope. Always when we get to talking about limbus we come to the borderland of our understanding. As a matter of fact, limbus means the border and it is that highest, purest thing of nature that we retain after death. Without it there could be no continuation of conscious life in the other world, because only by means of this limbus do we retain any effect from the natural world. These effects must be conjoined with what we receive from the spiritual world in order for us to be conscious.

So as long as we live on earth, and while we are receiving sensations from the spiritual world, together with everything we sense from without, the focus of our attention is upon the things from without. We see an object and all the emotions that that sight arises in us we ascribe to the abject because our attention is focused on the outer world, and we think it is the object that; produces all the affections that we feel.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 9 The result is that we think that human delight - human happiness - all the things that give us satisfaction are in the world around us and that we will increase our happiness if we multiply them - if we amass them. Children early get the acquisitive instinct, or rather they yield to it, and think that the more things they have, the happier they are going to be. They are ready to grab from others and resent anything being taken away from them. Why? Because they attribute the delights they feel when they sense these things to the objects themselves only. It is only by growth and education and reflection that we came to realize that that isnt true - that we can amass all the objects we please, and the more we amass them the more we will want and the less will they satisfy the inner cravings of the mind. Now if it were true that there was only one world and if it were true, as it appears, that all the sensations that are within the mind are the result of sensations that come from without, that would not be so. The very fact that the possession of things in the natural world does not satisfy us is proof that the mind is feeling or sensing something else in which it takes delight, besides these material objects.

On the other hand, with little children, while they ascribe all their sensations to the outer objects, their real delight is not in what comes from without but in what comes from within from the spiritual world, and that is the reason why they care less about the objects themselves. Their whole delight is in the sensations that they derive from those objects around them, and the sensations are those of life. The result is that they ascribe life to everything. They ascribe love to everything. Everything is personified - a state becomes a person; a doll is a person; animals are persons; and they ascribe to them the qualities that they themselves feel within their minds. This doesnt come from the objects themselves. For Little children everything is living and that is where the delight lies - not in knowing how many chemicals are mixed together to make it or in what form they are put. The thing that means something is that it arouses human emotions in their minds. It is the influx from the other world that arouses those emotions, and while they are looking and ascribing all those to the objects around them, they are really living in the delight and enjoyment of that spiritual influx. Only by degrees do they come to distinguish between these two. Only by degrees do they begin to concentrate on the objects themselves and on what we call facts, and as they do, they begin to place reality more and more in the accuracy of their external bodily sensations and to consider that the inner feelings that had meant so much to them are imaginary, babyish, something to get away from. They now have to be scientific and accurate. That is the way grown-up people are and they have to grow up and be like them. They think they are being extremely scientific, but the truth is they are still in their imagination. Children live in the world of imagination, which is a world, after all, where the things that come to us from without are vitally modified by what comes from within. It is not just a photographic reproduction of what comes from without, but is modified by what comes from within, from the other world. That is the reason why it is so difficult for us to get one accurate scientific idea, even when we are grown up, even when we set our minds to do just that. It is very difficult to eliminate this element of imagination that modifies the impress that comes from without. Just reflect on how different things appear to you in different states of mind, what different conclusions you reach from exactly the same premises, from exactly the same external circumstances and conditions, when you are in a different state of mind. Take two people going through exactly the same set of experiences, one in one state of mind, the other in another state of mind, and they can come to opposite conclusions.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 10 If you go into a court of law and listen to the testimony of witnesses as to what they saw when one automobile comes around the corner and hits another one, you will find that even with an absolute desire to be honest, two people watching exactly the same thing can have a very different idea as to what happened. What was impressed on their minds was not a photograph of what happened. If you could take a photographic reproduction of it there would be no doubt as to what happened, as in football games today where they check up on the referee! It is not a reproduction of that thing we call an idea, because that thing that comes from without is always modified by something coming from within. Therefore the picture we honestly get of it is not exactly like what comes from without and we find the testimony varies, and in some cases varies so greatly that it is almost impossible to discover the real truth. Now all these are common experiences well known and taken into account by psychologists, but there is no real explanation of them, if everything that is impressed on the mind was similarly produced from without and that is all - if that were the case, you would not have such differences. Then it would be a photographic reproduction. That is what happens on the camera and therefore it is accurate in the scientific sense of the word; isnt modified by anything else. That would be true of the human mind if the human mind were just a camera responding to the forces of the natural world. The fact that it is not true is a scientific fact, universally recognized. The difference lies in trying to understand why that should be so.

Most scientific thought is based on the idea that, after all, the mind is only a camera - but there is a mysterious thing that is called emotion that changes it. How or why, or what that is, nobody knows! Now the philosophy of the New Church gives an answer to that question - tells us what that mysterious element is that changes the impressions on the human mind and makes them scientifically inaccurate. It gives an origin for such a mysterious force and traces the way in which that force can come dawn and affect our minds. That is the whale idea of Swedenborgs philosophy of the mind.

Spiritual World              -              Love
Simple Fibre                                                        
Pure Intellectory              -              Perception

Spiritual Mind              -              Mens

Natural Mind               -              Animus

Brain                            -              appreception
Natural World              -              Energy

We have two worlds here - the natural world and the spiritual world, each with a different kind of activity which affects the mind.

Here is an actual touch, a direct touch with the forces of nature, and here we have a direct touch with the forces of the spiritual world. One might be called perception, and the other apperception, thus a direct touch with the actuality of each world.



Our sensations are always a combination of these two and we build up here a natural mind or animus, which results when the natural force meets the spiritual force and when the focus of attention is on the natural world. This produces natural sensation.

Here we have a spiritual mind or mens which is built up as the result of the forces of the natural mind meeting the forces above, but when the focus of our attention comes from within, not when it comes from without.

In both cases we have to receive through both of them but the focus of attention in one case is on the natural things and in the other case on the spiritual things. That is what makes these two different minds. What we call consciousness is not a direct touch of either world. It is always a combination of the two because what comes from without is always modified by what comes from within, and what comes from within is always modified what comes from without. And if we are speaking about this natural mind where the attention is focused on the natural world, then we can say that accuracy results to the degree that we can remove any extraneous modification of what comes from within and perceive directly what comes from without accurately. Scientific accuracy is a perception of the material world apart from all human emotions - all human considerations. It is where the mind is abstracted from any question of personality and merely is trying to find out what are the facts.

On the other hand with reference to our consciousness of spiritual things, the same thing is the case. We have to remove all the apperceptions, all the confusing appearances that come from the senses if we are going to perceive correctly what comes from within, and the whole purpose of our striving for spiritual perception, for the understanding of spiritual truth, is to remove the mind from the distracting influences of the outer world and receive impressions directly from the spiritual world.

Now that is the reason why the Writings tell us there are two foundations of truth; the one foundation of truth is nature and the more factual our information, the more accurate the reproduction of the forces of nature - the more scientifically true is our concept. The internal foundation of Truth is The Word, Divine Revelation. The more accurately we sense the spiritual message of The Word, the message of Love and its activity, not modified by the appearances of the senses, the more true is our spiritual perception. Two foundations of truth. And so we have two sensories - two minds - an internal sensory and an external sensory. The combination of then produces two minds - one called the natural mind, or animus, where our focus is upon the natural foundation of truth, and the other our spiritual mind or mens where our focus is on the spiritual foundation of truth.

The internal sensory we have said is what Swedenborg calls the Simple Fibre, and the external sensory is the organ of the body with its five senses. Just as the bodily organs - the eye, ear, nose, tongue, skin - can touch and apperceive the forms of objects and forces in the material world, so the Simple Fibre is an organ that can feel and touch the forces and forms and objects of the spiritual world. Note that in both cases this is a touch with something that is fixed and permanent outside of man, something unchanged by mans states, something that is true in itself regardless of how we may feel about it.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 12 With reference to the outer world we can check our sensations by scientific experiment. We can check them by going back to nature and testing over and over again those sensations under varying circumstances and conditions and as observed by many different people. In the sane way we can check our perceptions of spiritual things because the true nature of spiritual things has been revealed in The Word, apart from our individual feelings of them, and therefore The Word becomes a fixed thing outside of us by means of which we may check and test our inner feelings, our emotions. It can be checked and tested by many minds, observing and investigating the teachings of The Word.

But now note this: there would be no test or proof as to our sensations of the outer world unless men acknowledged that the outer world was a fixed reality, independent of our own sensations and feelings, and therefore that it was true. Unless man acknowledged that the world of nature contains truth on which we could depend, there would be no possibility of checking. For instance, suppose man had the idea that nature itself was always changing, that there was no universal law by which nature operated, that there was no understandable made by which nature produces her results, that everything was just a haphazard effect; then we would have no check or proof because however many times we went back to nature, and however many times it happened to come out the same way, we would still say, That just happened, so it was not necessarily true. As a matter of fact, that was very much the way men thought about things in ancient times. Nature was to them just a miracle or a whole lot of miracles. It was simply the manifestation of some arbitrary acts of God who was all-powerful and could do anything He pleased. And therefore they could not consider that He was bound by any laws, and for that reason there was no common basis by which an understanding of natures laws could be built up. But with the beginning of the modern era of scientific thinking a great contribution was made to human thought that all things in nature take place according to a fixed law, which is never changing and is something we can rely on. With that beginning, then, there came the possibility of checking our sensations and ideas that we get from nature, checking them against nature herself, with some assurance that that check would lead to actual proof of a truth we could rely on.

Now the same thing is true with reference to the spiritual world, and while religious minded people throughout the world do believe in some other reality - do hold to an idea of scene kind of spiritual existence - yet more and more there is felt to be no assurance as to the reliability of our feelings about these spiritual things, nothing by which they can be measured or tested, or checked. Here again this is largely because the idea is that God in spiritual matters operates by Divine power without regard to law, as if, when it came to spiritual. things He acted arbitrarily and there was no way we could be sure that what we perceived as true today would still be true tomorrow. God might act differently then! The idea was that all spiritual things are miracles beyond mans comprehension and therefore we should not attempt to understand them. We should be satisfied if we can come to some understanding of the operations of nature where the laws are fixed and certain. And so while men cling to an idea of the reality of spiritual things and the holiness of the Word, regarding; it as something sacred and to be held in reverence, yet there are few, indeed, that hold it as something to be really understood. They do not look to the Word as something that can check and prove our spiritual feelings and sensations.



For this reason religion is regarded as purely an emotional thing, something that we suddenly feel, perhaps in a state of conversion. People in other religions also have religious feelings that are as good as ours, and there is no common truth with reference to spiritual things to which we can appeal. People speak about the reliable truth of Christianity, and at the same time differences in human understanding of that truth are so great that the Christian Church is split up into one hundred sects, all holding to different things. In the modern view increasingly it is supposed that all religions, whether Christian or non-Christian, are to be regarded as having a similar foundation of religious feeling that we should not criticize. We should not think that our; is right and the other wrong. We should not set up our own feelings as against: others. We should have charity and tolerance for all religious feelings on the basis that all are equally valid and there is no standard of comparison, or of measurement as to what is really true. That is all on the basis that after all, while they recognize there may be some spiritual world, or something, we can know nothing with assurance about it. While we can learn something about the natural world - here is something fixed, outside of ourselves, that we, can rely on, and we can learn something about that by scientific experiment - but how can we lean anything with assurance about this spiritual world, if there is one?

Now the philosophy of the New Church is based on the idea that with reference to this spiritual world .that we cannot sense with our outer senses and therefore cannot subject to the same kinds of experiment as we can the things of nature - that with regard to this spiritual world the Lord Himself speaks to us and teaches us. The Lord Himself puts the real truth within human range and does so by the inspired writers of the Word throughout all the ages, and that therefore if we go to that Word as to a standard of measurement by which to test our feelings of spiritual things, we can be given to know with assurance spiritual truth about which there can be just as much of a common perception as there is about natural truth tested by scientific experiment. Why? Because we have a mind that is just as capable of directly touching and feeling that spiritual world as the senses are capable of directly touching or feeling the material world, and both worlds are independent of our minds. And if we go on touching and feeling in different times, we will discover that factual truth about the outer world that is independent of our personal feelings. So also if we go back to the Word and in different states and under different relations continually check and recheck our perceptions of spiritual truth, our understanding of the Word, then we will be able to arrive at a concept of spiritual truth that is just as reliable, just as much to be proved by the common perception of many people as is the truth of nature.

Now that is the only ground or basis on which we can have any certainty at all about spiritual things or natural things, and let me point out that the evidence of experience is in favor of this philosophy of the New Church. Why? Because of this: if the premise of modern science were true and if there were only one source of mental life coming from without, then there would be no possibility of seeing beyond our actual experience. There would be nothing to explain why it is that men, out of limited experience, can picture in their imagination something that can be proved to be true by later experience.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 14 Understand that there would be nothing that could guide our putting together all our sensations in such a way that we could come to a true conclusion about something we had not actually sensed.

We have a mind and it is being touched by forces from the outer world, forces which are the source of experience and that produce sensations. Now these sensations are something put together by comparing these various impulses from without - what we feel, hear, touch, see, taste in many different conditions and situations. From that we produce what we call an idea. But if this were the only thing that were touching our minds, all these sensations would simply remain in our minds, photographic reproductions of what comes from without.

They do not, as we have pointed out. They are always put together to form an idea and an idea that means something. What do we mean when we say, It means something? Well, it means that we have put them together in such a way as to interpret these sensations for a purpose, to an end, and we have the uncanny ability from time to time to put them together in such a way that that end or purpose, when we come to test it again with all our other sensations, when we come to test it many, many times, it will prove true that we have from this found out how these can be put together in another way and still be true. That is the basis of all invention. Man experiments for years about something but always with an idea, or purpose, or end in his mind of accomplishing some result and a result that will later accord with all the laws of nature that can be tested and proved over and over again and found to be correct. Now where could that come from if the mind were simply made up of these isolated sensations coming from without and they were all pouring in on the mind in a confused mass, and sitting there? Well, the psychologists talk about the association of ideas. How do they associate? What is the association of ideas? What causes them to be put together to mean anything? Yet we experience this continually, day after day in our waking hours. Everything that comes to us is at once put together to mean something in our minds. Now I say the actual facts, the experience, demands that there is something else than what comes from without. Nature doesnt put them together. The outer world around us doesnt put them together. Something in us puts them together.

All right, suppose on the other hand that just as our minds are being impinged upon from without by these sensations, at the same time we are receiving impulses from a spiritual world, a world not of external objects but of the truth, which is nothing but the inner relations of these natural things showing how and why they were so created by a merciful God, the interior ends and purposes of the Divine in them that caused them to be what we find them to be. Now if we are being impressed from within with those impulses that come from the Lord, those impulses then can give us the ability to see how these things are related. It can give us what we call an inner perception of truth, and from that we can understand how what is at first a confused mass can by virtue of this inflowing life be put together to mean something. We have some force here to account for what we experience, and so I say that the actual facts call for some such philosophy as Swedenborg vies, and that without it we are left with a miracle that has left utterly unexplained how the sensations from without ever get put together in our minds to mean something! It remains a miracle for which there is no understandable explanation.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 15 But if, on the other hand, we accept the philosophy of Swedenborg, at once we have something by which we may begin to understand how these things take place, and why it is possible for men to so interpret their sensations as to make them mean something and thus accomplish ends to invent things and to foresee possibilities.

Now let us understand, however, that while we have this external sensory that is in actual touch with the world of nature, and while we have this internal sensory that is in actual touch with the spiritual world, everything that is built up between these two is really an interpretation. It is a modification, and the natural mind or animus is something that has to be continually checked and rechecked. We cant rely on it because it is always modifying what comes from without according to some impulse from within. And let us realize that that impulse from within may be true or false. You can get false impulses from within as well as true ones. Therefore our reaction to what comes from without is not reliable. Let us note also that what is formed here in the spiritual mind - while in itself it has just the same relation to our spiritual perception as this has to our natural sensation - yet that also is unreliable for it is modified by our ideas formed from the senses, it is limited by our limited knowledge (our ignorance), so that the ideas that we form and our actual understanding of what the Lord says in His Word may be very inadequate, just as our understanding of what we fell and sense in the other world may be very inadequate. All that comes into the mind therefore, must be continually checked and rechecked both from without and from within, if we want to get at the truth.

We have to keep going back to the Word of God with a recognition of our own fallibility, or our own ignorance, and submit our minds to be taught by the Lord. Just so too we have to be going back continually to nature, acknowledging our ignorance and our need for a wider view, submitting our mind to be checked by actual experiment. It is only between these two things - an acknowledgment of our own ignorance and a need to be taught and to learn - only by means of these directed to both foundations of truth, the Word of God on one hand and nature on the other, that we can come at last to any sure and reliable solutions that will build up a mind in accord with the truth both of the spiritual world and the world of nature.



Section Two                     THE PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION
Chapter One


We have been speaking about the mind and its constitution, and now we come to consider the question of education. How does our philosophy of the mind affect our understanding of the place and function of teaching as a means of influencing its growth? What are the forces with which education has to deal and how can these forces be made to operate effectively in developing the mind? In other words, what does it give us to believe with reference to the teaching profession, the school organization, the form of textbooks and modes of presentation that go to make up what we call formal education?

The first thing, perhaps the most important thing of all, which gives us a different point of view is the concept that we live in a dual world, and far that reason we have a dual mind. Now this is theoretically recognized by Christians everywhere. Man is a spiritual being, has a spiritual destiny, but it is supposed that we really know nothing about this spiritual life and therefore it is left out of account in the matter of education. The fact that man is born for life after death, that he is immortal, is regarded as a very interesting thing in itself but it has no practical bearing on education. The philosophy of the mind, however, that is given us in the Writings demonstrates to our full satisfaction and conviction that the two worlds - the spiritual world and the natural world - meet and cooperate in building the human mind; they cannot be separated. In other words, both worlds are present and active in every mental operation, in every sensation, thought, perception; in every affection, emotion or love. It takes two worlds to make these things that we call mental activities. If we are to understand what the operations of the mind are, we must take into account both worlds. Nor can they be considered as two separate worlds, so that we can study the effects of the material world on our mind and get all that results of that as one thing, and then study the effects of the spiritual world on the mind and get the results of that in another place. We cant do those two things separately, because as I have said both together see necessary for every mental operation.

This means that all instruction and all education, however it may have in view the life of the body and the world - being what: men call practical and looking to our ability to adjust ourselves to the needs of society and to make a living in the world - cannot help dealing at the same time with the spirit of man, for everything we learn exerts an influence upon our spirit. All the ideas and all the ideals that are instilled by education go to build up what we call our spirit, whether they are derived in relation to purely material things or not. So we cant teach external things, what we call secular subjects, without having a direct effect on the spirit and minds of those who are learning, and this spiritual effect is after all a matter of paramount importance. We cant afford to ignore it, for it is this that bears directly on the eternal destiny for which man is created. That destiny goes beyond the end of life on earth and makes our short time in this world pale into insignificance in comparison with it.



Now nearly everybody will admit, as an abstract proposition, that they believe in the spiritual world, even modern educators, but what do they do about it? How can we come to the conclusion, if we really believe this, that we can separate secular education and spiritual education and have one on Sunday and the other the rest of the week? How can we do it practically? If we are teaching things all through the week, whether we try to or not, we are affecting, the spirit and thus the religious life of our pupils. How can we consider that as something quire apart - having nothing to do with religion - and then bring them together for twenty minutes on Sunday for Sunday School and consider that we have fulfilled all the requirements of education? As a matter of fact we attempt to do this is a very modern thing. In all history it has been recognized by men that religion and education cannot be separated. Only in modern times comparatively. Prior to that all education was regarded in its relation to religion and was centered in religion. In fact the primary purpose of education was to teach the Word and the doctrine of the church. That was the Christian idea in all earlier times and it led to the establishment of schools. All our modern schools that have any length of history were originally religious schools. They were established by religious bodies, supported by religious bodies, maintained primarily for the teaching of religion. In recent times, however, the need for a sharp separation between the church and state is what has led 50 the separation between secular and religious education.

The idea in this country which has been paramount is that there must be freedom of religion, and at the same time that education is a function of the state. Now if those things are true then there is no other way than to separate religious and secular education, the state to undertake secular education and leave religious education to the church, and that is the universally accepted philosophy now in our country. So the prime purpose of education has come to be regarded as preparation for citizenship country is the highest ideal, and to prepare for citizenship is the highest end of education, this education of the state. Whatever may be done in addition to this, out of consideration for the various religious bodies in our country, is by Sunday Schools. Recently, since that has been found to be inadequate, some more effective method through the allowance of released time has been suggested so that each church may have an opportunity to give more adequate education for religion. This idea - the separation between religious education and secular education as necessary and quite all right - has been approved by Protestantism and only the Catholics insist on retaining their authority over secular as well as religious education.

Now this philosophy is expected to meet our present situation in this country, but from a standpoint of philosophy it has to be based on the idea that spiritual things are apart from natural things. They can be learned separately and then put together afterwards. The idea is that such things as spiritual truth, virtue, morality - all these can be inculcated in any teaching, without reference to religion, or to Revelation, or to dogma or to any creed or any special belief. We dont have to have any special belief in order to be honest and upright. If you understand a moral code you are willing to follow it. Therefore it is supposed that the public schools can fulfill all that is necessary in teaching morality to children who have a great variety of religious beliefs, or with whom those religious beliefs are being inculcated at home and in Sunday School. It is supposed that the public schools, as a matter of fact, can do a better job in moral and spiritual education - that is in education for an honest and upright life - than can than churches with their great variety of technical and theological differences, because in them we eliminate all this and just present to the child the simple fundamentals on which all religions will agree.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 18 Leave out all the differences and we will have sufficient basis for the moral and spiritual training of our children.

This has been held and vehemently supported by the advocates of our public school system in tie face of growing criticism, arising from the appearance that it isnt true, that something has been lacking in our public school training that has resulted in serious lack of moral and spiritual character in those that have been trained. In response to that criticism, it has been held that it: is not because of a lack of religion, hut because all the opportunities that we have been offered have not been taken to instill a moral code with children, and that if this is done then we need not worry about the teaching of religion. Now such a concept or idea is something that cant possibly be upheld if we look at the mind in the way in which the Writings teach it to us. If, as we have seen, the mind is a dual organism and every sensation, every thought, every idea, arises from both worlds at the same time, then how possibly can we teach external things without at the same time teaching internal things? How can we possibly hope to instill with children a moral and spiritual character if we are carefully eliminating any understanding of that part of what they are learning that has to do with spiritual and moral things? In our effort to become extremely scientific in our teaching we should eliminate all emotion that might color our thought, so that we present it impersonally and entirely without reference to human life - just the facts. It is supposed that we will be giving the greatest, most powerful truth.

Experience does not bear that out. Experience rather leads us to believe that if we have no emotion or personality associated with our teaching, it becomes dry-bones that has no attraction for the hearer. He doesnt see any reason why he should be interested in it because it has no relation to the things he feels are real in life. If we can succeed in eliminating all human interest, how are we going to attract the attention of human beings? And yet the difficulty is that as soon as we motivate by religion, as the educators say, we introduce something emotional in to it, and at once we are getting unscientific. As soon as we do that, we are arousing some emotion, one that will lead to a true spiritual orientation of the mind or one that will not. We cant help it.

We need to come to see what is meant by religious education as compared with secular education. If the mind is, in all its reactions, affected by both worlds, what then is the difference between religious education that looks to spiritual life and eternity, and secular education that looks to worldly life alone? What is the difference between these two and how should they be related to one another? How can they be brought into such coordination that they are in harmony, where one supplements and fills out the other? At the present time, where we have secular education in public schools and religious education in the Church and the Sunday School. In spite of every effort to bring them together we find, to a large extent, that these two are antagonistic, or if not antagonistic, they are largely unrelated to each other; so that in the mind of the child he can see no very definite connection, and often they lead in diverse directions.



In other words, many of the ideas and thoughts and conclusions that a child receives in the course of his secular education are contradictory to those that he gets taught on Sunday, and it is impossible for him to see how both can be true. Thus he will probably ignore is difference and go on learning what they tell him on weekdays and remembering that so he can pass an examination at the end of the month, and also go on learning what they teach him on Sundays so that he can get his little badge or pin - all without relating what these have to do with each other. And if we train him sufficiently in this way as a child we can only expect him to go on doing that the rest of his life. In other words, he will have one life on Sundays and another or the rest of the week. That is his adjustment to social requirements: that he shall keep his religious life properly isolated on Sundays and not allow it to interfere too, greatly with his weekday life. That is certainly the tendency of the effect on the life of the child, particularly if he raises in school certain questions that have been raised in his mind by his Sunday School, but he will find the answers given quite out of keeping with those that he gets at Sunday School.

An increasing number of people have adopted a philosophy that they can get beyond religious teaching as such, and live on the basis of their own philosophy, built out of their own experience of life. They use their religious teaching and they use their secular teaching, but only as a means to obtaining their philosophy, and many of them come to the point where they feel no further need of religious teaching. Still they want their children to have it, and feel their children have need for it. I have had a number of people come to me wanting to have their children come to our schools, with the idea that we dont believe particularly in religion - your religion. I have had it said, We are beyond religion but we do believe very sincerely that children need it. And the idea is if they get enough of it in their childhood, then when they are older they can get beyond it and work out their own philosophy for themselves.

Now what are we going to say about secular education and religious education? Certainly, they are two different things. We must not confuse them. But how are we going to combine them? How are we going to make them work together? That is the problem that is so sadly in need of solution in relation to our modern educational ideas. If we carry the idea of public education to its logical conclusion - namely, chat the purpose of education is preparation for citizenship, and for the state - there is no other end than that of the education of the totalitarian state which is simply a frank recognition of that idea in its logical conclusion. The state is everything. The individual must be trained by the state, and the states whole problem is to so train the children in the country that they will be completely loyal to the government of their country, without question. Now that is the logical extreme to which our public school system does not want to go, and yet if we eliminate religion from it entirely, what else have we?

We speak about morality. We can train our children in morality but it is a morality that has its whole center in our obligation to the state, for there is nothing higher, than that which the public school can recognize. Whatever the philosophy of government may be in the country, that is the thing that takes the place of religion as the highest goal, the highest thing to which we should leak.



So now we want to examine these ideas that are so prevalent in the world around us, examine them and see what is the solution to the problem that the world is facing, that is offered by the teachings of the Writings.



Section Two                     THE PHILOSOPHY OF EDUCATION
Chapter Two


We need now to define education in its general aspect, and then we need to define religious education as distinguished from secular education, and then we need further to investigate what this education does for the mind. What does religious education do? What does secular education do for the mind. How does each one contribute to the development of the mind? That will lead us to consider what the immediate affects of education are as compared with the ultimate effects, for they are two things. We are affecting the minds of children all the time - having an immediate effect on their thoughts and affections, but it is an accumulation of that that is going to lead to lead to some permanent effects in after life. We must see how those two are related. And lastly, we will be led to investigate what is the philosophy of learning, all the learning by which we would endeavor to build up an educational system.

Men have been trying to define education for a long time, and there are almost innumerable definitions and none of them entirely satisfactory, so if you hit on one that is entirely satisfactory, you will make a name for yourself. Why should that be so? The reason is that education, the development of a human being, is as complex as life itself and tile varieties of this complexity are as numerous as individuals, and therefore the question, What is education? is a larger question that a single, mind can grasp with any sureness.

You begin by saying that education is a training of the mind. Now if you reflect a moment you will realize that a great deal of our development comes without any training at all, nothing that we call training. We learn many things while we are not being trained, so that it goes beyond training. Much education, and in many respects, the most vital part of education lies too deep within the recesses of the human mind for us to discern it. If we are observant, we will find that education goes forward right before our eyes in ways that are altogether unexpected and surprising. Just about the time we think we are doing some training of our children, we find they have been developing in another direction without our knowing it. A great deal of education takes place when both the teacher and the learner are quite unconscious of what is happening. Even when the teachers back is turned the child may learn something. When the students attention is fixed on something else he may learn something. This is because a large part of education is affected by forces that are invisible to us - forces that come from the spiritual world - the influence of spirits and angels that is vital but quite unseen. As a matter of fact the deepest forces that are developing the human mind are those that come from within through the soul from the Lord alone.

In this way, education, the effects of education - that is, the final destiny of the individual - is held within the hand of God and guarded against the invasion of others, so that one man cannot dominate the soul of another, cannot take it out of the hands of the Divine Providence. That would not be the case if it were not reserved by the Lord to direct the mind of a child, quite irrespective of what we may do.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 22 So all these influences - the direct and immediate influence of the Lord flowing through the soul, the influence of spirits and angels - are present in varying states with children. The influence of the environment over which we have no control, the influence of the things we consciously delight to do, and finally the influence of formal school teaching and training - all these have to be considered if we are to understand how the mind develops.

Of course specifically, as educators and teachers, we are concerned with what human beings can do by conscious effort, but we must see that in its relation to the things we cannot do, if we are going to understand it properly. The greatest mistake that an educator can make is to think he can do it all, and not see clearly the limitations of what he can do, where his responsibility begins and where it ends. We must not take in too much territory, - for if we do, we fail, not only in our objective, but we fail to make the best use of those things that are required of us, of that part of education that is in our hands.

If we think about it, we do influence children, both by unconscious contacts with them and by deliberate effort, and as a matter of fact, we cannot help doing it. We cannot avoid continual contacts with growing minds, especially of the children that are in our own home. They see to that! We have contacts with them even when we would rather get away from them for the moment. The care of helpless infants, of irresponsible childhood, and of undisciplined youth is the obvious responsibility of parents. As a matter of fact, children in infancy and in youth all look to adults to help them when they are in trouble. They would like to do many things for themselves when they are not in trouble, or do not know they are, but when they are in trouble they turn to adults for help, and we cannot refuse it. Every contact with children has an influence upon them and has a part to play in their education, whether we will or not. So we have no choice as to whether we will educate our children - we cant help it! The only choice we have is, how we will educate them. For this reason we must seek some answer to the question, What is education?, in order that we may with some intelligence, direct our relations to children in such a way as to promote their best welfare. Even after we have done this to the best of our ability there will remain a large field that is beyond our scope - beyond our control.

Children will have experiences of their own. They will have contacts with others. They cannot help that. We will not environ their whole life with our own influence, and much of our influence will be quite unconscious to us, so there is a wide field in which education, of which we are a part, will be beyond our control. As a matter of fact, because of this, many of the things that we try to do will have an effect directly opposite to that which we hope. Because we only see so little of the childs mind and act according to what we do see, often what we do will have an opposite effect. Now, of course, in regard to this field of influence that is beyond our control, we should not be overly concerned. We might be tremendously worried and overburdened with a sense of responsibility for something that is beyond our control, and if we are wise we will avoid that.

When it comes to those influences that are beyond our control - they are not beyond the control of the Divine Providence, and our concern then is with reference to the direction of our own life, our own character, performing our own duty, and fulfilling our own responsibility; allowing the Lord to use that in whatever way He sees best for our children.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 23 What the Lord can do through us secretly, for our children, at tines when we are not are to control the situation, will depend upon our reception of Him, will depend upon the presence of heaven with us, the spheres of heaven with us, and thus it will depend upon our individual resistance to evil in life. As a matter of fact, those unconscious influences on children are the most vital things in their life, and often we find that while we have been consciously thinking of what is good for, the child, consciously trying to instill in him certain things that we, ourselves, are not living up to, then we find that the child is far more impressed with what we do than with what we say.

Now, in addition to this, there is another field, more circumscribed, wherein our own duty, and our own responsibility, involves a choice of influences that shall play upon our children; where we have the ability to choose and direct the environment of our children, and this is the field of mans conscious part of education in it, broadest aspect. It includes far more than formal training. It includes our whole attitude toward childhood at all times, and the constant meeting of the physical, natural and spiritual needs of our children and the way we do it. It includes the whole environment of the home under our direction, and only after all this do we come at last to the field of systematic instruction, definite school teaching, and administration and a planned curriculum, that has to fit into all the other fields and do the best it can with what it finds there.

To define is to limit. Now we have indicated four successive limitations or definitions of education, beginning from the broadest - the widest aspect - and coming down in smaller a smaller circles until at last we come to formal school training which is the most limited definition of all. It will be seen that these four successive limitations are inextricably interwoven. The influence of the Lord from within through the soul is going on all the time, whether a child is in school or out of school; the influence of angels from the other world is going on all the time, in every childs mind, causing his states of mind, his moods that greatly determine his attitude for whatever we try to do for him. The effects of what we would call chance happenings, the undirected experiences of a little child, remain in his mind and profoundly affect his actions maybe a long time afterwards, and we cant take one of these and consider it as if it were a thing by itself.

We have a school here, we have a teacher, a certain set: of lessons; we have the child come to school at a certain place, and we think in that way and by those means we will educate him. We cant do that. That is only a very small part of a childs life - a far less important part to many children. They come to school because they have to, stay as long as they have to, thinking about something outside (much more interested in that) while they are there, and they almost say, Now teach me if you can! Under those circumstances we make a great mistake, to ignore all other influences and just put him in school and think he will learn there. The result is that we will just pour our mind into his and that is an extremely mistaken idea of education, and yet if we define education as training, that is what we mean.

It is a harder job than that, fortunately for the child, far as a result of the way in which he is protected we have individuals growing, not little automatons responding to our limited ideas of what they ought to be!


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 24 We have individuals who can take what we give them and make something out of if that is directed by the Lord. It is the most fortunate thing in the world, because the most heinous kind of education is the kind that tries by every possible means to destroy that individuality and to stamp an the child the image of our own mind and ideals.

So we find we must always take into consideration the secret forces that are playing an the child mind, and we must cooperate with what the Lord is doing far the child and not endeavor to become all-powerful ourselves and insist on our own will in the matter of education. We must begin with an attitude of humility. Here are little minds that have been created by the Lord for a use that He foresees, and the Lord is leading them to the fulfillment of that use. He asks us to help. He doesnt ask of us to take it out of His hands and make something else out of it. If we are going to help, then we have to see something of what the Lord is doing for the child and be careful that we dont interfere with that. That is our first responsibility.

Also, as we have pointed out, our own influence with the child, our formal instruction of the child, will be profoundly affected by our own character, our own attitude towards the Lord and Divine Providence, by our personal ideals of life and thus by our spiritual associations. The angels and the spirits that are present with us, and the sphere of our thought and love will deeply impress the child, will more deeply affect him than anything we say or do. And also what we teach in regular courses will have an effect profoundly influenced by what we teach in informal moments, in casual remarks, in attempts to meet a sudden situation that we have not foreseen nor prepared for. We do more educating that way than any other, as a matter of fact. If we look back over our own past education, what is it that stands out? Do we remember anything specific, any lectures that our professors gave us? Can we repeat them word for word or outline them? No! But we do have an impression of certain personalities that we came in contact with - what their principles were, what they inspired us to strive for. That is what sticks. Suppose we ignore all that and say it is all a matter of what we actually teach by so many formal expressions - words. We miss the mark, and while we are trying to do that the real effect is going to be something else that we did not anticipate.

All these influences, taken together, make up the totality of a childs education, and they must all be considered together as a whole. Of this, formal systematic teaching is but a small part, and can only be a small part. We must have some idea of these larger effects - these wider fields of influence - if we are going to have that small part of formal education wisely planned and intelligently used.

Now if we would give you a definition of education in its broadest sense, we would say that it is the. totality of influences - Divine, spiritual, human and material - the totality of influences playing moment by moment on the mechanism of the childs mind, rousing it to conscious life and stirring in it loves and interests, in the exercise of which it grows. That would be the definition of education in its widest aspect.



Now you will tell me at once, what is the use of such a definition as that? It is too broad, too indefinite, to be of any practical value. That would not help us to teach anything - just to say that: all the influences on a childs mind would develop him. Well, from a strict standpoint of a formal pedagog, I would agree that such a definition is quite inadequate, and yet I hold that the pedagog must begin with that concept if he is going to understand the practical things he is required to do. It is a most important starting point fur our thought, in order that we may not make the mistake of thinking that our formal training is everything, that we may not forget that it merely fits into a larger whole and is part of it. We must see our formal training in its proper place in relation to that thing we call education in its broadest aspect. We must begin by acknowledging our limitations - the limits of formal training as compared with education as a whole. We must do this or we may attempt to do with it the things that lie outside its range. And in order to make our formal education what it ought to be, we must constantly study the other vital elements in child growth and preparation for life and seek to understand them to some degree. And so I say it is by no means useless to begin with such a definition as I have given you as the broadest definition of education.

There is another broad definition that is similar, a way of saying it that was characteristic of the beginnings of the Academy, and that is that education is preparation for heaven. Now that is the same as saying that education is the whole work of the Divine Providence in its guidance of a human life, from beginning to end, from the first consciousness throughout the whole of life. That certainly is education but it is education under the Lords guidance, not anything that we can control. What we have said - that education is the totality of the influences playing; upon the human mind - is the same as saying that education is preparation for heaven. Given an individual soul and mind with its particular qualities and native abilities, then the whole stream of Divine Providence is directed toward the perfection of that mind until it because imbued with angelic wisdom and love, and ready to perform a heavenly use - that is the influence of a Divine Providence to educate. And that influence is individual with each one. The Lord acts with specific reference to the needs of each one. If that isnt so, then there is no meaning in the teaching of Revelation - that Providence is in all particulars and singulars of our life.

Every child that is born comes under the instruction, tutelage and guidance of the Lord as the Divine Teacher, and every influence which is permitted in Providence to play upon that mind has as its end same part in the work of preparing that: mind for heaven. This is true whether the influence be good or evil, for evils present by heredity must be seen and acknowledged. They must be brought into view and therefore they must be brought into the life of the child so he may recognize them if they are to be overcome. Hence it is of Divine Providence that temptation should come. So the whole of life from beginning to end is a process of education under the Lord Himself as the Teacher.

And lets refer again to the fact that with this influence of the Lord no one but the man himself can interfere. The man himself must be able to receive or reject that teaching of the Lord, and he cannot be prevented from having that choice.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 26 That is difficult for us to see, but I think as we go on with the study of education we will see that that is so. If it is not so, then there is no such thing as human freedom and we are but automatons.

This leading of the Lord and teaching by the lord is what we mean by the totality of influences under Divine Guidance. Now this definition is of value not as a practical working formula, but as an ideal, for it gives us to understand something of the Divine end and purpose of human life. To what end is the Lord educating children? For heaven. Should our end be something else? We say we educate children for life. Surely! But what is life for? Suppose we educate them for life - what we call success in life - and neglect the eternal aspect of that life. Have we not encouraged them to gain the whole world and lose their own soul? Life itself is nothing but a preparation for heaven, and therefore if we are going to prepare children for life we must have heaven as the ultimate end.

Education as we think of it in the professional sense, however, does not have to do with our whole life but with that period of growth and development that precedes adult age, or at least precedes a full entrance upon the responsibilities of a lifework. For what we call adult age is not determined by the calendar but by the state of mind. There are two most general divisions of life in the world. One is before we have reached maturity and the other is afterward. The one is during the time when we are under the guidance and control of parents and teachers and the other is after we have attained the state of independence. During both these periods the Divine work of education is going forward without a break, and a thousand forces are playing upon the mind every second. These forces are a result of the Lords creation and influx and of the disposition of that which He has created, and in their totality these forces are constantly directed by the Lord in such a way as to lead toward heaven, make it possible for man to come into it, if man himself is willing to follow. But there is a great difference in the operation of the Lord upon man between these two periods; a difference that is vital to our understanding of education. During the time preceding maturity the Lord operates, as it were, from without upon the mind; that is, he operates by means of the forces that play upon his mind from both worlds, from the environment of both worlds, and the formation of mans mind is the result of all those forces. He is the creature of them. He has no individual will or determination or choice of his own as yet. He thinks he has, but if we analyze it, he is altogether the product of something he has experienced, or something he has been taught; whereas after maturity the Lord operates still in the same way, but in addition to that He operates also from within by means of conscience, individual judgment, personal decision and responsibility. So there is a great distinction between the Lords education of a person during his minority and after he becomes adult.

If we regard now simply the period of minority as distinguished from the whole of life, then we come to that more focused definition that was given by Bishop N. D. Pendleton when he said, Education is preparation for regeneration, while Bishop Benade had defined education as preparation for heaven. Regeneration can begin only in adult age and it is by means of regeneration that man is prepared for heaven, so that all education that goes on during the period of minority is for the purpose of preparing for the process of regeneration in adult age.



Now that is still a very broad definition that includes far more than parents or teachers can do consciously for children. It includes all the forces playing upon them - their environment in both worlds at all times, but from this definition there arise certain interesting and inevitable conclusions. In the first place it indicates that education must be essentially religious if its end and purpose is to prepare for regeneration. Surely to prepare for regeneration is something that cannot be accomplished apart from religion. As a matter of fact, regeneration is nothing else than the life of religion, and education then would be to prepare for that - to prepare for the life of religion in adult age. In that ease then it becomes clear that education is more essentially the work of the Church than it is the work of the state. It would be impossible for the state to devise any education the supreme purpose of which would be to prepare for regeneration. They would have to leave that phase of it for the Church and go on for preparation for citizenship apart from it, and that is the practical way it works out.

Of course the difficulty lies in the fact that the common idea of religion is that it is an emotional reaction to some dogmatic belief or faith, and of course if that is what religion is, then it would be quite possible to have an education, regardless of that emotion, and leave the Church to determine what that emotion should be. But if we examine more carefully what religion really is, we see that religion is the very center of all human life. It is not merely an emotion about some dogmatic belief. It is the fundamental love that dominates all our thinking and all our acting. That is called - and may rightly be called - a mans religion which he loves above everything else, no matter what it is. No matter what he loves above everything else, that he worships and that is his faith and religion. The purpose of religious education is that love, that thing a person loves more than anything else, shall be the real Creator, Ruler and Preserver of the universe. It should be Truth Itself and Good Itself and not some imaginary objective that belongs only to our own mind and has its rise in ourself.

Religion is far broader than theology. Theology is the science of God; that is, it is the knowledge concerning God. But religion is the life of that which we love above all else, and the two come together if what we love above all else is God. Now it is perfectly apparent that whatever we love above everything else is back of everything we think and everything we do, not merely back of our theological thinking. It is back of all our thinking on every plane of life, whether it be religious or secular. It will be the hidden purpose within whatever we do. That is what is meant when it is said in the Writings that religion is of life - not apart from it - not matter of thought or opinion of armchair philosophy. Religion is of life. It is of the whole of life. Life in the world, life with reference to all secular activity, our use, our business, our daily duties, professional life, every field of mans activity - religion belongs to all of that. It is by a mans life in reference to his daily work, the meeting of the duties that face him day by day, his reaction to the problems that present themselves, that his mind is built, his character formed, and the quality of the man determined.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 28 Unless there is back of this that which we call religion, then whatever the man calls his religion will have relatively little to do with his real character. It will be merely something worn on the sleeve.

It is by means of his life in the world and his business, the meeting of his responsibilities, that a man regenerates. So when we say that education is to prepare a man for regeneration, we dont mean it is to prepare him for some kind of theological opinion or some kind of monastic meditation. It is to prepare him for the kind of life in the world - in his business, in his profession - that will lead to his regeneration. A life of regeneration by means of a life of use in the world: that is what education is for.

Now what is the use of having an education that may prepare a man for a life of success in the world, and at the same time ignore any relation of that to his regeneration? It becomes evident at once that if we accept this definition, then education embraces both what is religious and what is secular, and there is need for knowledge and training with the reference to both these things. Also they must be brought into relation to one another. There is no use having secular training and religious training set off to a point where they keep on diverging, so that we never see where they come together, or what their relation is. It is in preparation for use, regarding use as a spiritual thing, that we find the two come together, for use includes all our external service to the neighbor by means of our business and employment and profession, and at the same time it means our spiritual relation to our fellow man. A use is not merely to the bodies of men, it is to their spirits, and it is something that goes on after death - after the body and all the things of the world have been laid aside. We still in the kingdom of heaven perform uses to one another for which our material external services have been but a preparation. If education is to be for the sake of mans regeneration, then within the practical idea of utility, external service, and citizenship there must be all the idea of spiritual use and service to the neighbor, and this can only have its origin first in the love of God, then in conscience, in obedience to the Divine Word, and in all the knowledge and training that these imply.

So in some way it must be possible for us to see these two things - secular education and religious education - together as two things mutually interdependent. Either one by itself will fail to achieve the purpose of education. If we just give a religious education without preparation to meet the needs and requirements of life, we are not preparing for regeneration because it is only by means of life of usefulness in the world that people regenerate. On the other hand, if we prepare for the practical needs of external life without any idea of the spiritual values that are involved, we are not preparing for regeneration.

Preparation for regeneration involves both of these things, and so the whole question arises: how are they related? If the purpose of life is to prepare for heaven, and if regeneration is the process whereby human minds are prepared for heaven, and if this regeneration is acting from a supreme love to the Lord and charity toward the neighbor as the central loves of life, then our problem is to see how that love can be made the essential thing in practice, in the work of ones calling and in every external human relationship.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 29 That is what it is to make a religion of life. However, that is speaking of what it is. It doesnt tell how to do it. Here we have simply been speaking of what are the two great phases of education. Now all this is too broad. It is not a real definition of what we mean by education if what we are looking for is a practical guide to teaching. It is talking rather of the totality of forces that play upon the minds of children both from the other world and this world. It includes all their contacts in every phase of life - in school and outside of school, at home and outside of home - what is directed by conscious effort and much that is not.

Now what we need to ask ourselves is what men can do by considered effort to aid in this work of a preparation for regeneration. There is a portion of that work that must be done by men - cannot be done without them - the quality and nature of which will depend entirely upon the conscious effort of human beings. For instance, compare the difference in final results between children whom we know that live in the world around us, between children who have been subjected to careless, vicious, unsystematic or unwholesome influences, and others that have been carefully brought up. What is it that children must derive from parents and teachers that they cannot acquire in any other way? That is the real question: What is it that the Lord expects of us when He puts children into our hands and gives us the responsibility of them? The answer to such questions will bring us closer to a practical definition of education, and it will give us a more outstanding ideal toward which we can strive in our efforts to develop an educational system.

Children derive from parents and teachers, and in the broadest sense from all their contacts with adults, three things that cannot be derived from any other source, and those three things together constitute the contribution of man to the education of children. The first thing is the sphere of their life - adults sphere of their life, that is, the spiritual associations that they have around them that affect the children. Children have no sphere of their own. They have no fixed associations in the other world. They have not yet chosen or been able to choose their associates there. They live in the sphere of the adults who are around them, and are affected by that sphere continually. This influence of the spheres of adults that surround them is perhaps the most powerful agent of education that there is. By means of it all remains are stored up. Delights are insinuated. Ideals are established. These fundamental attitudes of mind and life are formulated and inaugurated in the minds of children far more in the spheres of our life than by anything we consciously teach them. They feel much more than they can formulate, and what they feel is simply the sphere of our life. That is the first thing that can be given only by adults.

The second thing is the guidance of rational judgment. Children have no rational judgment of their own. They have not the knowledge, the experience on which to base it. They have to rely on guidance in these matters. The adults who have charge of them must make wise decisions for them and children not only need that - they crave it.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 30 They become utterly lost if they do not have some adult to whom they can go to relieve them of the necessity of making decisions that are beyond them. At once it is clear that the decisions we make for our children are very important, that they have a tremendous effect on their life. These decisions may exercise profound influence over all their thinking and feeling later on. They cant help doing it, for by means of our decisions, our judgment as to what children may or may not do, where they may or may not go, what they may or may not see; all this has a determining influence on what is the environment that is going to form in the childs mind, and this not only in one world but in both worlds. That is the second thing that only adults can do. Children without this would be lacking an essential element in their education.

The third thing that only adults can do is to provide for children the knowledge and experience of the past - not necessarily to form a judgment about it: - but to give them the knowledge and give them the experience from which, as they grow older, they can judge and think for themselves. Children are born into complete ignorance, and if left to themselves without any human contacts they could know only what could be learned by their own individual experience. All the memory of the race would be lost to them (suffering from amnesia), but adults can give them knowledge from the basis of their individual experience, and far broader than that they can give them the experience and knowledge that has been preserved in the past of the race, everything that has been gathered from mans investigations and observations from which to begin their own thinking and judgment. To present the knowledge that is gained by others gives opportunity of introducing then to wisdom and intelligence with its delight. Just to know what other people have found out or what other people think doesnt make them wise, and much of the knowledge that we impart to children doesnt make a very strong impression on them, you realize. It didnt on us either. We listened to it and then went off to think about something else because our real interest wasnt in it. Sometimes we held it in our memory as long as a week, you know. Other times we forgot it sooner. However, what has happened in every case is that placing before the minds of children a rich background of knowledge opens the gates of opportunity. It gives an introduction that may stir interest, arouse love or affection. There is something that the child has been born to love or to like. What it is we dont know. It is different with every child. But so long as that spark of interest and love has been touched and lighted, then there is a difference. Then the child begins to learn something; he doesnt wait for as to hammer it into him. He goes after it - investigates, and investigates in such a way that he is paying careful attention, analyzing, retaining it in his own mind and drawing conclusions from it. There you have some education that leads to individual investigation, study and experience. All our human efforts to educate children can do nothing more than to open the opportunity to that. Every child has got to learn to do it for himself. All we can do is to give him the opportunity - nothing else. However, that giving of an opportunity is a very important and essential thing, and our problem is to try to give that opportunity to every child, no matter what the difference is in his form of mind; no matter what the difference is in his innate heredity and Divine endowment. We must try to give him the opportunity, stir and arouse whatever interest is there, so he will begin to learn from his own initiative.

By these three things then - the spheres of our life, the guidance of rational judgment, and the knowledge and experience of the part - adults cannot help exercising a very profound influence upon children either for good or bad.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 31 Therefore they are faced with the inevitable question: how shall we do it so that it may be good and not bad? It is just as important to know what is the right thing to teach at the proper age and state of a child, as it is to know what; kind of food to give the baby if he is going to live and grow strong, for the two are the same. One builds the body and the other builds the mind, but is just as important that the mind has the right kind of food as it is that the body does. By emphasizing one kind of environment and minimizing another we dispose the mind in one direction or in another direction, and that is the sum total of what it has been given in the hands of man to do.

The rest is done by the child himself under the immediate guidance of the Lord. How any individual child will react to the environment that we provide for him, and to what stimulus he will respond, we do not foresee. We cant possibly know what part of that environment will serve for him those special needs of interest and love and affection that will become the determining things of his life. That is a matter that only the Lord knows. And here is one of the most important things for us to realize - that we should not try to control that! The greatest errors in all human efforts in education are when we try to take over and do what belongs to the Lord, for then we try to force the life of another into some mould that we have imagined. Then we do tremendous injury to the child. Some fond mother makes up her mind that she wants her boy to grow up to be so and so, and without any regard for the fact that he has an individual mind that has been created by the Lord for some use in the other world that she doesnt know, she is determined to have him follow that line that die has envisioned. And it may mean utter failure and ruination unless, as is providentially provided, the individual child is given the power and ability to resist that compulsion and to follow the leading of the Divine Providence as it comes to him through his own mental perceptions later on.

Now if all this is true, then our whole object in education is not to force children into this or, that or the other group of children. Our whole objective is to cooperate with what the Lord is doing for those children, to recognize that their highest welfare lies in a free development under the Lords guidance, not under ours. How different an ideal of education that is from the kind that tries to envision what our children are going to be ahead of time, and create and produce an education that: will inevitably lead them to that goal.

It has been supposed that in the New Church we have a New Church education for the primary purpose of increasing the membership of our Church. That has been supposed to be the Catholic reason for having Catholic schools also. It is not the end and purpose of our education to increase the membership of our Church. The end or purpose of our education is to develop a mode of training that will be in cooperation with the Divine Providence, that will open the gates of influx to the operation of the Lord with children so that He may lead them, and it will not take away their freedom of spiritual life by determining their life for them ahead of time. Therefore true New Church education has the greatest possible regard for the spiritual free development of children in the next generation.





Education is the totality of Divine, spiritual, human and material influences, playing upon the mind moment by moment, stirring in it loves, ambitions, interests, in the exercise of which it grows.

The purpose of this education by the Divine providence is Preparation for Heaven.

Education may be defined as above, but:

The purpose of this education by the Divine Providence is Preparation for Regeneration.


Education is the rational control and direction of the childs environment in both worlds, by human spheres, the guidance of rational judgment, the knowledge and experience of the past.

The ultimate purpose of this human education is to cooperate with the ends of the Divine Providence.

The immediate purpose is to hold the mind of the child continually open to Divine and heavenly influx, and progressively to increase the ground for the reception of such influx.


Education may be defined as in number 3, but:

The purpose of this education is to increase the power of human influences by organized effort.

Teachers inspired by love of use and organized into a professional body. This brings more powerful influx from the other world.

Children, grouped according to state of mental development, organized into choirs.

Subject matter of instruction can be organized and presented systematically under a carefully planned curriculum.




[Drawing of concentric circles with the soul in the center.]

I. Influx through the Soul from the Lord, unconsciously guiding and directing all things toward a goal of use determined by the innate form of mind present from creation. This influence is the deepest, the mast universal of all, and secretly qualifies all the rest.

II.        Informal, undirected influence of home and social environment, from which certain elements are selected, ordered, and made central by the innate faculties and propensities of the individual. This goes very deep, but is actually controlled by I.

III.        Consciously directed environment, produced by parental selection of the childs associations and experiences, the elimination of some, and the deliberate seeking of others. The effect of this will be less deep, and will depend upon the interaction of the other two. It may have effects exactly opposite to those planned or desired.

IV.        Formal school training, limited in time. to specified hours, bounded by the reach of the curriculum and modes of instruction, and ability of teachers. Its effects are inevitably inwoven with those of the preceding influences and will be greatly altered thereby. The depth of this influence depends upon how truly it is harmonized with the others, or adjusted to their needs.

V.        Influence of spiritual associations, the presence of spirits and angels, changing with growing states, and shifting with moods and physical and mental conditions. This will color all the rest.



Section Two                     FORMAL EDUCATION
Chapter Three

Our purpose has been to start from the broadest possible idea of education, and gradually to narrow the field until we come to that portion of mental development that is the proper task of the schools, and this with a view to seeing where the work of the teacher ends, what the schools limitations are, and what its proper field is with reference to the whole process of the childs development.

In the broadest sense education is a thing that is entirely in the hands of the Lord - a Divine work - under the Divine Providence. The results are determined by the free choice of the individual, under Divine leading. That is true with all varieties and the end and purpose of all human assistance in this work is that it may cooperate with what the Lord is doing, in spite of the fact that we cannot know in the deepest sense what the Lord is doing. We cannot know the secrets of the individuals mentality, his interests, his eternal use and the place toward which the Lord is leading him. Nonetheless our task is to cooperate with the Lord in our effects upon his education. This is the reason why the highest end in our mind should be his preparation far heaven, for that is, we know, the Lords end. Whatever we do in the way of education should be with the acknowledgment that that is the supreme purpose and everything should be subordinate to it, so that our idea is to emphasize and enlarge the influence so far as lies within our human power, - the influence of all that will help in the process of regeneration.

Now that is the reason why when we come to speak of that part of education which is limited to what adults can do, we define that education as the rational control and direction of the childs environment in both worlds, by human spheres, by the guidance of rational judgment, and by the knowledge and experience or the past, all with the purpose of cooperation with the ends of the Divine Providence. That should be the guiding purpose in the way we control the childs environment. The immediate purpose is to hold the mind of the child continually open to the influx of the Lord and angelic societies, and progressively to increase the basis with him for the reception of such influx. All this leads inevitably to the conclusion that in our educative work with the child, religion must be central, for what is the use of all the rest if we fail in cooperating with the Lord as to the spiritual and eternal welfare of the child?

Now we come to consider something of what the school is to do. What is the task that can only be accomplished by professional and institutional means? That the school or professional education is not necessarily essential to a childs education is clear from the fact that it is a very modern institution. In very ancient times there were no schools as we know them. Children grew up somehow and they were educated, but conditions have changed, and the civilization in which we live has become more and more complex. The inter-relation of peoples and nations by means of modern rapid communications, travel, trade, and the interdependence of all has increased tremendously. All this requires a kind of education for the modern child that wasnt necessary in ancient times to meet the requirements of modern civilized life with all its complexities. More is needed than can be done in any informal way by parents. And so the schools have been devised as a human means of meeting that need.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 35 And what is the specific aim of this systematic institution of training? If we examine it we will note that there are three phases of education that are characteristic of institutional work that are impossible without such institutions and that mark the distinctive tasks that schools perform for children.

The first of these has to do with the fact that by means of a regular institutional form of education we have a provision that there may be teachers who are devoting their life to the work of teaching and who are specialists. Without institutions they would not have the opportunity to specialize, but by means of it, this becomes their life-work. Thus there is opportunity given for those who, by innate form of mind have a love of teaching, to develop their faculties to the highest degree, and to important the benefits of this to the greatest number. Also having a profession of teachers that has continuity from year to year, generation to generation, makes it possible for knowledge and experience to be collected and accumulated with reference to education, as it could not otherwise be. In addition to this there is provided by the teaching profession, a devotion of teachers to that work as a life-work. There is afforded the ultimate for a special influx from the other world that gives illustration and enlightenment in matters pertaining to education. And not only from the other world but also in this world, for professional relationships afford means of inter-communication between many minds that are directed toward the matters of educational interest, and there can be a sharing of their experiences, of their discoveries, and their knowledge to the benefit of all. But in addition to this, there is extension into many societies in the other world where there is interest - special interest - in education. That there is such a use in education in the other world we are definitely taught. Mention is made of schools and educators in many passages of the Writings. (DW XI - 5, AC 2289, 2296, 2301 at the end, HH 329, 334-337, 391, 514, CL 132, 151, 261, 315, 326-329.) In these passages you will find a good deal of teaching about the education in the other world, and the fact that there is an influx from that world into those of this world who are devoting their life, thought, and energy to the work of education.

The second phase that is characteristic, of institutions has to do with the pupils or students who are gathered from many families and brought together according to age and mental development. The family affords contacts among children of different ages but the school creates or provides for companionships on the basis of similar capacities, of common tasks, of requirements that keep pace with advancing mental and physical development with children of a similar. By means of the school many children from different families are brought into cooperation and harmonious choirs. Much is said in the Writings about choirs and their use. In fact all must be brought into harmony by means of them in order to come into heaven. It is especially taught that children in the other life must be brought into choirs in order that they may be perfected. (AC 2290, 2294, 2595, 5396, 3350, SD 492-3-4, HH 343) The teaching given in these numbers indicates that heaven is a harmony of many, thinking and willing together with the greatest variety but also the greatest unity - variety of form, unity of purpose and end. All who come into the other world are brought into such a harmony by means of choirs, that is by learning to think, speak, sing, act together, and it is especially said that this must be done, so far as possible, in childhood because it is easily done when the mind is still plastic and in a state of innocence.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 36 It is much more difficult where the mind has been fixed in certain grooves. All children are prepared for heaven, perfected in this way. This is part of their education in the other world, and the Lord operates by means of a gentle influx which from within slowly brings these various minds into ordered relationship.

Now if we analyze the school as to its interior effects on the minds of children, we will find that a similar work is going forward that could not be done in any other way than by gathering together children, of similar advancement and capacity and giving them the opportunity of working together. They learn to think, to speak, to act not only in unison but in interior harmony of affection. Now when we think of this, we tend to think of their learning to write or sing something together by rote, but that is not the essential unity. The essential unity is that they think and speak and act from a harmony of affection. That that comes to be the case is evident from what we know as the class spirit, school spirit, the deep loyalties that arise out of their school life together, and the daily lesson of forbearance for the sake of others. Children, when they first come together in that way, are like the mob that was described in AC 5396 in which it was said that there was no cohesion. Every teacher knows what that means - a mob without cohesion. Teachers knowing what is essential, what is right, true, just, what is of eternal value, stand as it were in the center of this mass of incohesion, exerting upon it a gradual gentle influence that brings it all into relation, finally, with these things that are eternal and of spiritual value, leading the children more and more, unconsciously for the most part to a unity of thought, interest in higher things, and so bringing them into the order or the gyre of heaven. And what the teacher can do by conscious effort is very little compared with what the Lord does through the teacher, to bring scattered and unconnected ideas and expressions of the children into a harmonious unit.

The idea is that the discipline of the school, its law, its government should be a true representation to the child of the laws of Divine Order, the whole purpose of which is to bend the will and the understanding of the child into accord with what is truly the Divine Law. The more this can be done in a human way the more it can partake of human affections and individual interest between teacher and pupil. In spite of the fact that numbers must be brought together, the more that that can be done the better, for then the more nearly does it stimulate the government of the Lord which is universal, and at the same time perfectly individual. There is a danger in over-institutionalizing and thus impersonalizing education, and that danger is hard to avoid in our public schools when they are required to handle such large classes. The opportunity that we have in our small schools to introduce the more informal handling of classes and preserve a personal relation between teacher and student is of great value.

Nonetheless they is a need - an absolute necessity - for institutions and institutional training in the hands of professional educators, and this use cannot be performed by individual parental instruction, however exceptional it may be. There is a great deal of effort to standardize the education and requirements in all schools, and to guarantee a certain level of educational efficiency, but along with that goes the danger of standardizing the child, stultifying his individual development and preventing the kind of individual care and direction that is really the most effective.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 37 The purpose of education in the schools should be to provide for the development of every possible variety of mental equipment and to bring it into harmony with others - a harmony of mutual affection, of mutual appreciation and respect, not only of others but of the uses that they are preparing to perform.

Here again the ends and purposes of the school as a special instrumentality must be in accord with the whole stream of the Divine Providence. In other words, it must have a spiritual objective at the center or it will not really be cooperative with the Lord whose objective is spiritual and eternal. Unless the school has a spiritual objective in the center it cannot be in the stream of Providence. Now how can it have a spiritual objective at the center unless that objective actually governs, modifies and directs everything that is done in the school? To say that: a thing is at the center is to say that it really controls everything else. If it doesnt, it isnt truly at the center. If teachers realize fully that the end and purpose of all education is to prepare for regeneration, and therefore that it is spiritual in nature and not merely a preparation for some kind of adjustment to our natural environment, then it will be of the greatest concern to come more and more fully to understand how all the things we teach affect that phase of a childs life. What do they contribute to his preparation for regeneration? That is the most important thing that is involved in all teaching. If we were fully convinced that anything on the curriculum did not contribute to a childs regeneration, either directly or indirectly, then it: is hard to see what place it would have on the curriculum. If it does, it is of supreme importance that we understand what that place is, what it does do.

Now the great difficulty is that we are living in a world in which spiritual ends and objectives are ignored by educators and also by scientific investigators. The result is that. the textbooks and the scientific data which are placed at the disposal of the teachers for their teaching are without any regard to the spiritual objectives of which we are speaking. They take it for granted that that will be taken care of by somebody else. Just teach them the subjects and their spiritual welfare will be taken care of by somebody else, without realizing that the subject you are teaching, whatever it may be, is misleading the spirit every day according to the way it is taught. If a subject is taught in such a way as to give the child the impression that. the spiritual side of his life doesnt make any difference, or that it will be taken care of by somebody on the side, then it is leading the mind in the wrong direction. You cant help it. For that reason the whole question of subject matter, of instruction, how it is to be organized and presented will depend upon our philosophy of Life. What is it all for, what are we trying, to do with it? What is the purpose of doing all this teaching? That purpose will certainly modify the way we do it and that purpose - if it is to prepare for regeneration and therefore to have regard in the first instance to a childs spiritual development - will modify very decidedly the way in which we teach. It will do so largely to the extent that we ourselves as teachers come to understand what is the contribution of this type or that type of human knowledge to mans spiritual development.

Now if we consider it: the whole world was created by God for one purpose - that there might be a heaven burn the human race.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 38 There is nothing in all the created universe that was not produced for that end, for which God did not foresee definite use and purpose in helping the formation of a heaven from the human race. That is true of all the natural things of the world, all the material objects in the world, true of every field of activity and use that any man can go into. Now if we believe that, how can we go on teaching those subjects as if they had nothing to do with it? Or how can we consider the question as to what they have to do with it as of very little importance to a teacher? The very first thing, if we are going to cooperate with the Lord in such teaching, is to see what the Lord intended, how He intended to have these things contribute to the spiritual welfare of the people. And if we begin to see something about that, we begin to see how we can cooperate and present the material so that it may have that effect. Now that is what we believe to be fundamental to what we call New Church education.

We shall start with the acknowledgment that the whole world was created for the sake of a heaven from the human race, and that the highest use of all things created is their effect not on mans body but on his spirit that lives to eternity. And so our central purpose in all the study of education will be to find out what is happening in the minds of the children who are given into our care, what is happening in their minds step by step as they grow, and what the effect of our teaching is upon that mind, what effect every subject on the curriculum has. Why is it important that we teach arithmetic, that we teach grammar, that we teach literature, history, geography, music, art - anything you please - what is the real importance of it? If our idea of its importance only goes so far as its effect upon a childs body or upon his natural relations with men in this world, it has not reached the heart of the subject. The final answer is what it its effect on his eternal welfare. If we stop before we see that, we stop in the middle without understanding what the Lord is doing, what the Lord is intending to do with that child means of our teaching.

There is no other possibility than that, and yet it is a fact that in our present-day world, with our own minds so largely built up on the basis of a purely materialistic philosophy, it is very difficult for us to see how that is true. We say what does arithmetic have to do with a mans spiritual welfare, or what difference does it make to a mans spiritual welfare whether you teach typewriting or stenography or any other subject on the curriculum in the approved way, or some other way that we might devise? It appears as though the ways that have been devised have been the result of experience and learning, and we can get the greatest efficiency out of them. They have the greatest efficiency toward the end men are seeking. But when we seek a higher end, the most efficient means for the attainment of that end cannot help being modified, and to that extent our teaching methods will, be modified.



Section Two                     RELIGIOUS EDUCATION
Chapter Four

Just what is it that we in the New Church are attempting to do? What is the difference between religious and secular education? In the first place we would hold that religious and secular education are interiorly one. They are two phases of the development of the same mind. Our minds are one and they must be developed for life in this world and also for the life after death. God, we created this world and placed us in it for the sake of our life after death certainly did not envisage the idea that we should be trained for this world and then in some different and opposite way trained for life after death. Our life in this world is the Divinely intended cleans by which we are to be prepared for the life to come, and therefore we cannot separate the objectives of secular training from the objectives of religious training.

Both religious and secular education are included in the definition of education that has been given, namely, the rational direction of a childs environment to the end that his mind may be disposed to the reception of Divine Love and Wisdom. Divine Love and Wisdom can only be received on the basis of knowledge, secular knowledge as well as religious knowledge. And therefore that definition includes both, but implies that the ultimate end of all natural learning is the reception of Divine Love and Wisdom from the Lord, and if it fails in that it fails in its whole purpose. Yet religious and secular education are distinct and they must not be confused. The distinction between them lies in two things. It lies in the subject matter that is used and in the source of our information. That is the first thing, and the second distinction is that it lies in the plane of the mind to which the appeal is made and which it is intended to form and build by education. The kind of materials used and the plane of the mind to be built - these are where we find the differences between secular and religious education.

The distinctive characteristics of religious education are that its material must be drawn from Divine Revelation, can only be drawn from Divine Revelation. This is the sole source of knowledge concerning God and concerning the life to come, concerning any of the laws of mans spiritual life. These cannot be derived from any observation of nature. No scientific experiments will reveal them. It is only the Word of God that can give us knowledge of spiritual things. The word, although its literal sense is made up of worldly things, is like a world recast in a form that reflects and mirrors for our understanding the Kingdom of Heaven. It is so formed that spiritual truth may shine through and reach our understanding. The whole world of nature was created by God, as we have said, for the sake of mans spiritual life - to contribute to mans understanding of God and spiritual things. It is said to be a theater representative of the Kingdom of Heaven and it was the first Word of God to men. Nature itself was the first Word of God to men. But that book of nature that spoke immediately of spiritual and Divine things to most ancient people has become a closed book.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 40 This is because the minds of men have been turned away from spiritual things and focused upon the things of earth, so that they are unable any longer to penetrate the secrets of nature to the point of seeing their spiritual import.

This is the reason why a written Word had to be given; a written Word in which the things of nature and of human life were reordered in a form that might still reveal spiritual truth to men when nature itself had become opaque to their minds. It was as if there was provided by the Lord a new world which men could see and explore, and through which Divine things might still be seen.

Through no other source at this day can we derive spiritual truth - truth concerning God and heaven and all things above the realm of nature - and therefore it becomes the text for religious instruction. At the same time the literal teachings of the Bible are just as natural as the material used in other courses. They describe historic places, times, people and events, and to children they are but stories similar to the stories that they learn in history and geography and nature and all their other studies, but with this difference: they tell about the Lord and they are regarded as holy. The fact that these stories tell about the Lord in ways that even children can understand opens the way to spiritual faith and understanding. The fact that they are recognized as holy opens the way for the affection and love of spiritual things, to be touched and moved by influx from heaven.

The things that children learn from the word in a sphere of holiness have the deepest effect on their minds and upon their whole life later, and therefore religious teaching calls for more tender and solicitous care than secular teaching in order that religious affections may be rightly implanted, and precious things, protective of the childs spiritual life, may not be injured. The truth is that the same spiritual things lie deeply buried in all subjects of the curriculum. In the Word the spiritual things that lie concealed in all things of nature are brought closer to the surface, so that even children can see something of them. We do not see these spiritual things in nature because our knowledge is so limited, our horizon is so small, the universe is so tremendous. It extends so far beyond our view in space and includes realms above and below our consciousness that we do not penetrate, so the things we see are only partial. It is as if we are looking at a great machine, let us say, that is doing some complicated process and we are only allowed to see one little part of it - see it move - but we do not know anything about the rest. We would have great difficulty in understanding what it is all about. This is what happens when we look at nature. In the Word, however, we are given a glimpse of larger realms that lie back of that little piece of nature that we know, and thus we have some means of interpreting it.

Just what does religious education do that cannot be done by secular education? That is not so simple to understand, if you reflect upon it, in view of the fact that religion - a life of religion - truly depends upon our ability to act and think from eternal motives, from a love of justice and right, from a conscience, from truth and good, and thus from things that are eternal and unchanging. If our religious life is not from these eternal principles then it is not genuine, and yet children are unable to achieve that. They are unable because they have not yet the faculty or ability of comprehending what is eternal. All these things that we say are eternal are to us abstract, and only by growth and education can we learn to visualize abstract things so that they become real to us.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 41 We can be told about them from the time we are very little children and we can understand the words of those that tell us. We can believe them because we believe those that tell us, but we dont really see those abstract things they are talking about until our minds are developed to the point where we can visualize them.

So when we say that the subject matter of religion differs from other subject matter, in instruction and teaching, we can only mean that we are talking about something else to children - not really telling them or making them realize what it is that we are talking about. We are talking to children about heaven, about the Lord, about the life after death, about all qualities of human virtue, and we call that religion. It is religion to the children but their whole idea of it is at once brought clown to something concrete, something of this world, something of time and place and person. They are when they lean the stories of the Word there is influx from heaven to their minds which stirs a delight. The angels who are with them do understand the spiritual implications of all these things. They are delighted with them and they impart a delight to the children. The children dont know whence that delight comes. They think it is just inherent in the stories of the Word themselves, but they feel the delight and that delight is the seed from which conscience grows.



Section Two                                   REMAINS
Chapter Five

We have pointed out that in every mental experience there are two things. There, is the impulse that comes from without through the senses and there is an affection that comes from within from the spiritual world. These two must be conjoined to produce any consciousness whatever. The form that comes from without is the external and the affection that comes from within is the internal of all conscious sensations. Now those two are like two different planes - degrees - of the mind. Let us see if we can get some diagrammatic idea about it.



       External mind              (Knowledge



Here we have the external mind that is active with children, and in that there is everything that comes from without - whatever they sense. As they grow that changes. At first it has sensation of objects, etc. around them, then it becomes knowledge about the things around them - what they are and what they are for. Finally it becomes reason as they learn to form abstract concepts of all the things they have from their environment - what they feel, what they hear, what we tell them, what they read. All those forms in the external mind come from without.

But now none of this could possibly be sensed unless it was accompanied by an affection, a love, an interest and a desire, and these loves and interests and desires lie within all the things that the children are told. When they are very little children, we say they are in innocence, and by that we mean that they are not in rebellion against being led. To be innocent is to be willing to be led. They are not rebellious, they are easily led, and the reason is that their proprial loves are not yet active. When there is that innocence they can be led at once by the angelic influx into all their sensations that impart delights.

                                   (celestial remains


       interior, mind                     (spiritual remains


                                   (natural remains

Now here we have celestial remains. There are celestial angels with the children and whatever they see and hear and sense, they are delighted with, and within that delight there is the delight of heaven and that delight remains. It is a delight in being led. It is a delight in trusting those that have care over them. But as they grow, their self conflicts increase, and when it cones to the point where they are no longer children and they have knowledge instead of mere sensations, then the celestial angels can no longer guide them. They now resent such leading. They want to assert themselves. They dont want to be guided by someone else and so they insist upon an appearance of guiding themselves.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 43 Nonetheless they can still be led by a reliance upon others and by a guidance that is not so obvious, but is based upon the appearance that they guide themselves. This is because they begin to understand why they should do certain things. So there are stored up here spiritual remains as they are growing. Celestial remains form the highest and spiritual remains form the middle. When they pass beyond this stage and they come to the age of reasoning for themselves and building up a rational mind, then the spiritual angels can no longer lead them. They come under the influence of natural angels where there is still a willingness to be led, but it is more deeply concealed. They desire to assert their independence. Often that comes in youth when their reason is being built up.

All this from the spiritual world is something that is being built up. All this from the spiritual world is something that is being insinuated by the Lord to balance the natural tendencies of self-love and love of the world that comes through the evil hereditary. Every child is born into a tendency of self-love from evil heredity, and unless there were stored up these remains to balance that - these delights in being led from within rather than by oneself and ones own self-will - there would not be possible any reformation or regeneration in adult age. The natural tendency - the animus of every child - is to do what he pleases, when he wants.

The obvious process of education is a matter of controlling these instinctive impulses of children and training then to restrain their selfish loves for the sake of conformity to the requirements of society. If that were not done then they could not live in society. Imagine children who grow up and are not trained systematically to obey and cooperate with others. They would be incorrigible. There would be no possibility of their taking part in society. So education in its obvious side is simply a matter of restraining those natural impulses in order that children may be adjusted to their environment, as our modern educators say.

But to restrain for selfish reasons, to restrain merely because they are afraid of what would happen if they dont, from fear of the disapprobation of others or the loss of some help that others may give them, that kind of restraint will never lead to the building up of a truly religious life. There must be something more and that something cannot come from without or from others. It must come from within by the building up of a conscience, which means the building up of a realization that we must act not because other people tell us to or try to force us to, or because we are afraid of the consequences, but because a certain thing is seen to be right; and we love to do what is right; we have delight in it.

Now those delights are what are meant by remains. They are what are insinuated by influx from the other world as children grow. They cant be implanted by any other way. We cant put them in; we cannot instill that delight in what is right in itself which is the essence of conscience. That is where religious education comes in. The teaching of stories of the Word that give them a picture of the Lord and of how He led the children of Israel, a picture of His Providence and how they must look to Him for all things, a picture of His Law and of how all prosperity and happiness depend upon the obedience to His law: these are the things into which angels inflow, and children delight in it.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 44 That gives the very beginnings - the seeds - from which a true conscience can be developed. It cant be done in any other way.

No moral teaching that has its origin in what society has found to be the best thing, or in what intelligent people have discovered makes for the greatest happiness; no teaching of that sort will accomplish this result. It has to be from the Lord. It has to be something that leads the children back to look to the Lord and to the Word. That is the reason why moral teaching, apart from religion, is not effective in the last analysis. It leaves the loves of self still present and still dominant, although they are restrained for the sake of the effects on others. That is the difference between purely moral training and religious training.

Now let us remember that children do not understand these things we teach them spiritual, but when we teach them these things from the Lord there is being built up this interior of their natural mind that is being stored with remains. The whole object of religious education is to make that store of remains as rich as possible, so that the children fill their minds with as many of the delights that have their origin in the Word and the acknowledgment of the Lord as possible. Now that is really where the childs religion is - right on that plane. It: doesnt belong to him yet. It is something that is loaned to him. He will always be planted between that delight and the delights that come from his own heredity, from self-love and the desire to have what he wants. But if we can build up by means of religious teaching these delights that come from the Word, from the Lord, called remains, then we are establishing with the child an intermediate between natural things and spiritual things that will open up to him the spiritual mind when he becomes of age, or that can open it up if he will.

Take these references from the Writings in regard to this subject: AC 561, 737, 1906, 2284, 2967, 5135, 5297, and 6156. These numbers will give you the direct teachings of the Writings with reference to this interior mind that is present with the children as against the truly internal mind of one who is adult and regenerated.

It is important to remember that in this interior mind there are both remains and the affections that come from heredity. In other words, there is an affection that is added to the things that came from without and both make together then conscious. Now at times children will be under the influence of their hereditary impulses so that self-love will be the thing that animates them. At other times they will be amenable and tractable, because they will be under the influence of the delights of remains. As long as they are children they cannot, remain in one or the other. They are influenced by one or the other automatically, as it were, according to their state. They alternate between them.

It is only when they are grown up that they are able to take rational cognizance of their life to determine which they want to be their own and which they do not. Only then can they begin to drive out one of these forces and establish the other. For that reason we say they are neither good nor bad. They are influenced by forces outside of themselves, both from heaven and from hell.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 45 And the work of educators is to try to increase the influence that comes from heaven and restrain the influence that comes from hell. This is what religious education, above everything else, does. All other education restrains the influences from hell, but religion increases the influences from heaven. That is the difference. But where religion is present all other training may also increase the influence from heaven.

For this reason it is the part of religious education to seek, by means of the Word presented in a sphere of holiness, to stir up remains at every stage of a childs growth, and so to strengthen the forces in that interior mind which can, at adult age, combat and overcome the hereditary tendencies of self-love and love of the world. We must remember that what is being stored here in the interior are really only affections. Intellectual ideas are all external and they come from without, for which reason the children can only picture such things in concrete imagery, and all these affections from good or evil are identified and associated with the things that come from without. Children are as yet unable to grasp what is abstract and therefore spiritual. So when we say remains we are talking not about spiritual ideas for children are incapable of them. They dont reason about such things, they just feet them. They dont analyze where they come from or what they are for, they just feel them. That is the nature of remains. It is also the nature of self-love and again they dont reason, they just act from it.

They are only able to visualize things concretely. For that reason the religious teaching of children must be concrete. It is a great mistake to attempt to impart to them abstract spiritual ideas. You always fair because they are not able to visualize them. That is the reason why the Word has been given in such imagery, in stories that children can understand and grasp, but stories that contain within them a spiritual meaning that children when they hear them can begin to see and understand. That is the reason why it is a mistake to try to teach children the Writings and think we are giving them a New Church education by teaching them that water corresponds to truth and a mountain corresponds to love. It is all right to tell them, and they will have a knowledge and remember it, but they have no idea whatever what we mean by truth and by love. Time and again I have been impressed by the fact that our children think - when they have heard a great deal of conversation in New Church language from their parents and teachers and older children, and they grasp it and remember it - that they are sure they understand it. Therefore when we ask them what a certain thing means they say, Oh, yes, it means truth and it means good, but what that is they havent the faintest notion. Only by a gradual process can they begin to know what we really mean by these theological terms. And so it is a mistake to try to impart that spiritual idea until they are ready for it.

Religious education consists in meeting the child on the plane at which he is living at the time; meet him there and provide the specific things which will prepare him far the reception of what: is spiritual and heavenly. That is the purpose of religious education.



But let us remember that the religious ideas that children get from all we teach them will be natural ideas, not spiritual ideas. They think of the Lord as a man like men they have seen and that He is Divine, but the word Divine means He is wonderfully powerful, wonderfully great. The idea of what is infinite is entirely beyond them and so their concept of God is an anthropomorphic one. It is an idea of God that attributes to Him everything that is characteristic of finite human beings. Many religious thinkers have condemned any idea of God as a man, on the ground that it is anthropomorphic, that it is like the idea of a little child that imagines that God can be like man, that we are merely ascribing to God the things we feel in ourselves. They assume that the race has been growing from infancy into childhood and has built up these childish ideas of God, and so we in our age must remove them by realizing that God cannot be a man.

Now of course, if we mean that He cannot be a man according to a childish idea of a man, that is true, but if we remove all idea of a man, we have nothing left but the idea of an invincible force, and we remove God along with anthropomorpha. There is nothing left. So the Writings teach us that the concept of God that we must seek to build with our children is a concept of Infinity that is nonetheless human. God is Infinite but He is also infinitely human. He is Infinite Love and Infinite Wisdom, not just an invincible force of which neither love nor wisdom could be predicated. He is Infinite Love and Infinite Wisdom, and that is what is meant by a Divine Man. Now little children cannot understand that because they cannot yet have an abstract idea of what is meant by infinite, but they do get the idea that the Lord is a man. They picture Him as a man and that is right. That is the imagery - the only imagery - out of which a true concept of the infinity of God can arise. If we remove the idea of a man, then we remove all possibility of seeing what Infinite Love and Infinite Wisdom are. So in teaching religion to children the central thing is that we shall cultivate and preserve with them the idea of the Lord as a man. Never mind that with a child it is a crude idea; it wont do any harm. They will lose it as they grow. But the idea of the Lord as a man is the foundation and basis of the true concept of God.

Now this is just the thing that the stories of the Word do. The Old Testament pictures Jehovah: God as a Father who provides, protects and guides His people Israel, who appears to them in angelic form and tells them what they shall do, gives them promises and rulings. Then in the New Testament we have the picture of that God descending to the earth, taking a human body in this world, teaching men, and about His performing miracles and arising from the grave on the third day. All those stories from beginning to end have as their central theme the picture of the Lord as a man, God as a man, but as a Divine Man which to children means a wonderful man. That is the idea above all ideas possible with them. And that is the idea into which there can be heavenly influx with the delights of remains stirred up, because that is the very foundation of all angelic concepts of God. The whole of the heavens worship God as a Divine Man. With them it is a spiritual idea of what constitutes the human and how that Human can be unbounded or unlimited or infinite, but it has its foundation and focus in the actual picture of the Lord as a man. It is the center of religious teaching.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 47 What I wish to point out is that that is just the idea that is carefully left out in secular education. That idea is just what is left out, and the attempt is made to explain everything in nature without it; explain everything on the basis of an automatic force of some sort, leaving out the idea of God as a Man.



Section Two                            SECULAR EDUCATION
Chapter Six

And now we would ask what is secular education? We have been talking about religious education and trying to give some general outline of it in contradistinction to secular education. So what do we mean by secular education? There is a marked distinction given in the Writings between spiritual things and natural things, civil and ecclesiastical things, and we are told they are not to be confused. That applies to religious and secular education also. There is a distinction between them that must be observed if we are to use each one in the right way.

First, let us consider what is the modern view of secular education, - its ends and purposes as conceived by the educators of our day. There are three general kinds of education, leaving out the purely militaristic education that has sprung up in the totalitarian states. Each has its own objective and plans its work with that objective in view. The first has as its aim to prepare for complete living. The second has its aim to fit a man for his place in human society, and the third has as its aim to train mind and body to a skill in a specific occupation. These three aims characterize three types of schools. The first one is the humanistic, cultural type of school that makes the development of intellectual understanding and artistic appreciation its highest aim. The second or more practical type of school looks o professional efficiency, and the third, a vocational type of school, merely has in view technical skills. In attempting to educate everyone, trying to meet the needs and requirements of every form of mind and situation in society, al three of these objectives have to be considered. Each has its place in our educational system and in every rational educational system of our Western civilization.

With reference to the first one - the cultural school - the one that seeks to prepare for complete leaving, this has the broadest aim and attempts to do the most in the development of the mind. It also appeals to the fewest in number. To make the appreciation of art and music, historic backgrounds, racial and natural cultures the highest aim along with the interpretation of these according to some humanistic philosophy - all this is a high purpose, but as compared with the great mass of people or aim. This type of education seeks to increase our ability to enjoy the finer things of life, but the finer things of life require time and thought and study, and so have been reserved to a large extent for those who are in an economic position to enjoy them. They have not been open to the great majority of people who have to give their greatest time and energy to earning a living. At least that has been the common view. Therefore those people who look forward to the necessity of earning a living have regarded that as the most important, and their ability to acquire an appreciation of the finer things of life as something to be added, if possible, not as a first and primary aim of their education. With those, on the other hand, who had not such a necessity, but could devote themselves primarily to the development, enjoyment and appreciation of these higher things, there was a strong impetus toward the development of this kind of education. I am thinking particularly of the education in England, the public school education there (by which we mean private school education), reserved for the wealthy classes and having as its final goal Oxford or Cambridge with their humanistic training.



The second kind of education has as its aim to fit a man for his place in human society. It is more inclusive in numbers but narrower in its educational objectives. It pictures the social, political and economic situation of a man who is successful in any profession or business, and seeks to meet the demands of that position. It must include cultural training, historical background, some appreciation of art and music and the finer things of life - all of these harnessed to the fundamental aim of professional success. It includes an endeavor to impart a knowledge of practical human nature and how to handle human nature, judgment of character, qualities of leadership, ability to meet men easily, an ability to mix with them on the social and business plane. Such are the primary aims of that kind of education. It is not so concerned with the cultivation of individual appreciation as with a knowledge and understanding of those things that wilt smooth the rough places in human associations and increase the power of personal influence, for all that is part of professional success. The product of this education is what is more widely recognized today as the average educated man, trained to hold his own intellectually in good society, with certain basic standards of morality and ethics, but skilled in handling people and attaining the objectives of his own business and profession - a successful man.

The third has less concern for the psychological side or social side. It is more directly pointed to the attainment of financial success through professional and technical skill, and if possible, through pre-eminence of skill in a single given field, without paying too much attention to the surrounding fields. And this has by far the widest appeal in numbers. Most people throughout the world are of the opinion that, after all, the very first thing is to be able to make a living. If we succeed in that then we can go and do something else, but it is a mistake to think of anything before that. As a matter of fact, the whole history of education has been a struggle against that idea which would so limit education as to invalidate it. The older attitude towards education was, Why should my son know more than his father? Why isnt he satisfied with the specific training for partnership or what-not in his fathers business so he can carry it on? All this business of trying to give him knowledges in the things that wont help him is folderol and frills. This demand today is met by what we call vocational at schools. There may be some cultural training added but it is viewed in relation to the primal needs of vocational training.

Now we ask ourselves, what about these three aims and objectives? Are they wrong? Do we attempt to overthrow any such ideas and start afresh in secular training? If not, what is the difference? Why not just accept the secular training of the world and add to it some religious training as is done by other sectarian schools. If that isnt our aim, then what is the difference? It lies in this these are indeed the natural objectives that are necessary and important, but they become false objectives when they are regarded as the ultimate end rather than a means. Then they are taken out of their rightful place and put in the wrong relation to a mans life. When, taking the highest type of cultural training that is visualized by educators, we say that it is to prepare a man for complete living, what we mean will be greatly qualified by our idea, or ideal, of complete living.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 50 Complete living can merely involve the idea of our personal appreciation of artistic and deeper values in life, our sensitiveness to these finer things of life without considering their purpose, their use, and what we are intended to do with them. If we come to consider what it; is all for and what we are to do with it after we get that appreciation, then we have to go somewhere further than just learning to appreciate.

We believe that man, being a spiritual creature, has been endowed with the faculty of appreciating these finer things of life for the sake of his spiritual advancement and for the sake of his spiritual use to others. If that is so, then the needs to be some tie-up, some connection, with this appreciation of the finer things of life with religion, with what we believe to be the spiritual end and purpose for which man was created. What is intended by the Divine Creator for us to do with our faculties and abilities? We cant find that out by studying art; we cant discover it in any field of artistic or cultural development in the past. We can only find it out from Revelation, and having found it there, surely that should have some influence, make some difference, in our whole outlook upon this cultural education, While an appreciation of the finer things of life is an altogether right and legitimate goal of education; while it is a true objective of educators to widen the circle of those who are able to receive such an appreciation of the finer things of life, and while that development will widen that circle and at the same time deepen it, even according to the proposed ideas of many modern educators, yet left by itself as the final goal of education, it fails even of its own purpose.

That it fails is evident right at the present day. (February, 1942) What happens to it in England? What happens to it in Germany? What happens to it in Russia? Why? Because something that was necessary to protect it: wasnt taken into consideration. It was allowed to grow, and right beside it was allowed to grow a deadly enemy of it, which gained the upper hand and has, in some of these countries, at least, temporarily blotted it out. Now if this appreciation of cultural things were sufficient unto itself, and if all we needed to do was to train a larger and larger number of people in these cultural things to provide for the good life, then that would be all right; but the practical side doesnt work, and we only need to look around us to see the proof that it doesnt work. Look at all. the high hopes that came from the winning, or the supposed winning, of the first world war, when the cultural educators got down to business in earnest and developed an attitude of mind that was going to make wars impossible because people just simply would not stand for such a barbarous thing; as war - they had too much culture, were too appreciative of the finer things of life! As a result of all that education millions of people were made blind to what was happening until it was too late. That is a fact. People were astonishingly blind because they were so firmly trained to believe that this thing could not happen anymore; we were too educated! They did not realize that that education had left out the very elements that are necessary to protect and preserve the appreciation of these finer things and to give them some purpose and use.

Even natural life, even cultural enjoyment, must have as its end some use - a use that is not temporary or centered in ourselves or purely of this world, but a use that looks to the spirit of man, looks to eternal values, looks to the spiritual world and the eternal life for which man was created.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 51 If it doesnt have that: as its final goal then it will break dawn. So we have the tie-up, the connection between the highest things of secular education and religion, by virtue of this love and appreciation of what God intended them for - why He gave us these finer things along with the ability to appreciate them, as well as the knowledge of what He intends us to do with them. And by that means these secular things became vessels for the influx of love and charity and wisdom from the Lord out of heaven which dedicates them to the real welfare of the human race, and protects them against the selfish use of them that leads only to their own destruction.

I emphasize the fact that we must regard the use with reference to what is spiritual and eternal. Many people will say, Yes, we must regard the use of these things, but they are thinking of a worldly, temporary, social, political and mural use in this world. But this, if it does not also have regard for a spiritual and eternal use, will fail in its purpose, for all things were created by the Lord far one sole end - that there might be a heaven from the human race, an eternal organization of human life in harmonious cooperation which would yield the greatest possible happiness for each individual. Use in itself is spiritual and eternal. Therefore a use is nothing but those things that promote the Divine end of a heaven from the human race, and therefore use in itself is spiritual and eternal. Everything that is temporary and passes away is but a means to that use - promoting that use but secondary to it. And therefore uses have to receive their value from the Lord and our appreciation of them depends upon our realization of something of the Lords love and wisdom in them. Thus we are brought right back to religion in order to find out what is the real purpose and content of our secular education, even the highest of it.

And so secular education, if it is to be successful, is dependent upon religious education, and not upon a religious education that is something separate and apart from it, in the sense that we study all these cultural values over here and then we study all our religious ideas over there and keep them apart. It has to be such that we see the actual practical relation between these religious principles of truth and purpose, and these cultural values that we have been cultivating in our secular education. It is the relation between them? That has to be shown.

Cultural values such as are the objectives of the higher educational aims in our day should not in the least be under-valued. We should also seek them. We should lead people to appreciate them, develop them, to have a realization of their values as deeply and as widely as possible, but we should infuse into that training a genuine religious motive, a genuine spiritual love as the purpose and end for which it is all done, along with a sense of the use which we are Divinely intended to make of these gifts. Thus we should endeavor to infill them from within with something of spiritual and eternal value. If they are left empty of this, it is quite possible for them to be filled with evil as well as with good; quite as possible for them to be utilized for selfish and worldly purposes as for the true welfare of mankind.



Now we would point this out on the intellectual side. Training for complete living includes training to love truth for its own sake. What do we mean by that? It means training to seek to understand, not superficially, not just in a mediocre way, but with a desire to get at the real basic truth that lies deeply within; to penetrate to causes and thus to unveil hidden secrets of nature; to trace them to their origins and to their purpose and use. We are intended to do that. That is the real end and purpose of the highest cultural training, as we would regard it in the New Church. I know perfectly well that all men are not born to become philosophers, but I dont believe that anyone of sound mind is born incapable of appreciating the value of truth, or of being inspired with a love of truth and with an ability to appreciate it, as developed by others, even when we cannot be creative and original thinkers ourselves. By this we mean that we would train minds to appreciate what real wisdom is.

There is so much mistaken idea in the world of what the real wisdom is which we should seek. Many people suppose that it is amassing factual knowledge - the more you know, the wiser you are - far be that from the truth! It is not an accumulated mass of knowledge that makes wisdom, or our ability to remember it, or our ability to reason about it persuasively so we can make people believe whatever we want. That doesnt make wisdom. Wisdom has its origin in a perception of the inner cause, the inner purpose of all things of life. How are we going to gain that unless we search for it? How are we going to come to that wisdom unless we are seeking to understand those causes, those origins, those purposes and uses? How are we ever going to come to it if we are satisfied to accept terms and names of things as an explanation? We often do! As soon as we give a name to a thing, we think we know it. We know what that is; it is so and so. Because we can call it by a certain name we have a mistaken idea that we have mastered that thing.

We must train young people to realize that this is by no means the case, and that if we are to attain to wisdom there must be a life-long devotion to truth; a devotion to truth that leads the mind back step by step from a superficial appearance of things, back to the realm of causes, to the forces of the spiritual world that produce those things, and thus to those interior truths that can only be derived from Revelation. And these are a part of religion. The reason why wisdom consists in this kind of attitude toward truth is that man is born to live finally and eternally in a spiritual world. If you really believe that, then you must believe that all our natural knowledge is intended to serve us eventually in that world, for which reason it must have a spiritual objective, a spiritual purpose and an understanding of the spiritual cause that has produced it. And so we need to search for that if we are going to get at the real truth - the real truth that lies back of all things of nature.

Now if that is so, and if gradually we in the New Church are beginning to learn something of what that spiritual cause is, even if it is only very little, must not our secular education be such as to open the minds of our children and young people to that deeper truth? Thus we make it possible for them to enter further than we toward that deeper wisdom. How can we do that unless we teach those subjects by putting into them all that we can now understand ourselves of their spiritual value and use, and thus ordering them so that they will open up to an ever deeper vision of it in future generations.



Section Two               NEW CHURCH EDUCATION
Chapter Seven

We had been asking why we should place such a high value an artistic appreciation - the ability to discriminate cultural values. We pointed out that these are not an end in themselves and that they can exist side by side with evils that vitiate them. People may have a very highly developed artistic sense and they may have a strict code of honor in external deportment, and at the sane time they may be actuated by motives of selfishness and greed. They may be utterly cynical about their own appreciation of artistic things, using them merely as a means of attaining their own ends, which, in itself, is a clear proof that artistic appreciation is not the end of education.

Beauty in all its forms - whether color, movement, grace of action, speech, or thought - will these forms of beauty are really representations of what is good in itself and true in itself. If not, they have no meaning. In order that they may be to us representations of what is good and what is true, the essential thing is that they shall he characterized by sincerity. Now what we mean by sincerity is characterized by an internal attitude that is in accord with the forms of beauty, and not contrary to them. This is what makes them genuine, and there is no sincerity that doesnt have its roots in religion. Why? Because religion is the center - inevitably, necessarily - the center of human thought and human love. Unless our sincerity goes back to the realm of religion it doesnt reach the center; it is not true sincerity. There is something still back of it that is untrue.

Our purpose must be that spiritual values should live in and through cultural values. Now in order for that to happen there has to be the introduction into our teaching of that sincerity that has its root in religion. That has to be in the teacher who is trying to develop these cultural values, and not only the general acknowledgment that it is there, but there has to be developed an intelligent understanding of why it is there. The teacher must understand how these artistic and cultural values are intended to serve the real spiritual character of men and of society, how they are to be protected against the superficial appearances that come when religion is not recognized.

And that all goes back to the way we teach, not what we teach. We will teach the same technical skills, of course, but we must teach them so that they will make an impression on the mind of the student as to why they should be learned and how they should be used. That is the difference! That cant be done by teaching an abstract philosophy of religion off somewhere, and then teaching art and culture and all the finer values as if they had nothing to do with it. The two must be brought together by one teacher who is filled with the love and the appreciation of the artistic values, and at the same time realizes why we should enter into those appreciations and what we should do in order to accomplish sincere and genuine ends by means of them.

Education has not been sufficiently sincere. It has not gone to the root of things, but has been satisfied with superficiality. We must study to find out what is in back of all these things, and then how that reason can be tied up with the actual accomplishments in which we are training our young people. Without that, it is all vain in the last analysis.



People try to find the answer in some new method of education. They say we must teach in a different way. We must try to stir more interest. There must not be too much insistence upon external discipline. Rather we must arouse a sense of success and encourage self-expression on the part of our students, so that they will really take an interest in learning. Suppose we do succeed in getting our students interested in learning, and yet when they have learned, they still regard the purpose of their training as merely to succeed in some superficial accomplishment, in attaining skill and efficiency. That doesnt go to the root of human nature. In my view the task of New Church educators is to put a spirit of sincerity into their teaching, a sincere belief that what they are teaching has a spiritual value. They must have a determination to find out what that is, and to transmit same knowledge of it to their students. I think that so far as this is done, it will make a tremendous difference in the results of education.

The ambition to bring together spiritual and natural or cultural values, from a standpoint of a teacher, is like finding out how to make glass out of sand, glass which by the arrangement of all its particles will allow the light to pass through it, the light of heaven. All the facts and all the experiences and all the knowledges that we can gather from the material world are like grains of sand. They are intended to minister to our spiritual intelligence, to our ability to understand spiritual things. They are intended to let the light of heaven through, and that can be done if they are arranged in the order of heaven. If they are not, they became opaque and we only see the grains of sand and nothing through them. I think that no New Church teacher should be satisfied with any course of instruction unless, to some extent, that is being done. The actual facts and knowledges that are imparted are so arranged that they allow the light of heaven to shine through, so that right in those facts, not in theological abstraction, but in those facts, in the very experience of learning them, we come to see something of spiritual truth, something of the face of the Lord and the end of Providence; something of the purpose that is back of it all, and the way in which they should be used in accordance with that purpose.

That is a very good theory, you will say. It sounds all right but how are we going to do that? Well now, you have asked me something, and I am quite prepared to admit that to do that is not so easy. It is going to be a slow and gradual process. Learning how to do it, but then everything in the whole world that has ever been of any value at all has been achieved only by a slow process of learning, filled by a determination, an inner vision of what can be accomplished. If we have that inner vision and are devoted to it, then gradually, through generations, the ability to do what I have spoken of will grow and increase in power and perfection, for it is the truth. If we follow that truth we are far more apt to achieve something of success than if we say, Oh, that is all right - good theory, but too far off. We will just go on and do the thing everybody else is doing. That way we can accomplish something. If we take that road, it is a dead end. If we take the other road it may be longer, but it will go on through and will arrive somewhere eventually.



Lets not make the mistake of supposing that because we have a Divine Revelation in the Writings which gives us these principles, that therefore we already have New Church education. We have not. We have just learned something about it. We have an idea of what it might be, a vision that will inspire us. We have been given the means by the Lord by which that vision can be accomplished, but it is only by undivided application and effort to that ideal that New Church education in actuality will ever come into being. And the situation in the world - the utter lack of understanding of what I have been saying here by the educational thinkers in the world around us - means that we have to struggle to maintain that ideal and prevent it from being tarnished by the plausible theories of those around us, who would utterly deny any such thing. They have no concept at all of any relation of religion and the real development of education.

We spoke of another kind of education. This one was to prepare man for complete living, to fit a man for his place in human society, to have an objective efficiency in any profession or business. What is set as the goal is success, and in order to succeed it is clearly evident that the man must understand the conditions of his environment and must train himself to meet those actual conditions adeptly. He must recognize the customs and the ideas and the prejudices of those around him and be able to turn them to his own advantage.

What are we going to say about this idea of success? Many of our people will say that if we ignore that end and simply give a religious training without reference to it, we will fail, because after all, people have to live in the world. They have to succeed on earth, and life after death only comes after they have gone through this success or failure on earth. And so when we have talked about education for heaven, they say, What are we going to do in the meantime? I dont think myself that we ought to be opposed to success, you know. I have combated a false idea which I find in many places among New Church people, that any ambition for success is wrong, as if we should train our young people not to have any ambition for success - that is a great mistake. The only difference is that we want it to be real success, not a false success that will in the end be utter disappointment. There should be ambition for real success because real success means a real use to the neighbor, and that is the very foundation of happiness. The greater success we can have in such a use, the greater preparation we can have for life after death. That is real!

There is nothing against success as a goal, and so it is perfectly true that we must consider the actual conditions that we are facing, the actual situation around us, the psychology of the people we come in contact with, the trends of thought and of emotion stirred in the society in which we move. If we dont understand them we will certainly not succeed in our relation to satisfied with merely a perfunctory attitude about life which is drawn from a purely theoretical knowledge, that comes to arm-chair conclusions, that sits back and says: So and so isnt true in the world around me, without ever having looked at the world around me. We are apt to make a pretty serious mistake if we do that, for while we may understand the principles and theories very clearly, we may not see how they are related to the actual conditions that exist. We need to examine those conditions and we need to study how to meet those conditions successfully, and so we need to cultivate the scientific attitude of mind with our students, the same as anyone else.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 56 If we mean by the scientific attitude of mind, devotion to the facts - not the acceptance of imaginary ideas about them - but a determination to find out what are the facts and face them squarely; if that is what we call a scientific, it is right. The only thing wrong with the modern scientific attitude is that it begins with the assumption that the only things we can do are things of the senses; it leaves out all spiritual truths and all Revelation.

Now not only must we be willing to face the facts, but our objective should be that we not only adapt ourselves to the conditions so that we can externally succeed, but our inner objective should be that we adjust ourselves to the Divine Will. That is a very different thing from merely saying, Here is a certain set of conditions and if we understand them properly, we can turn them to our advantage, so that we can succeed in a worldly sense. Our idea of success should be a real service to the neighbor; not a superficial service for which they are willing to give us adequate return, that will make us what men call successful, but to give them a genuine service. Again, the same idea of genuine is that which we were speaking about a minute ago with reference to culture. Our service must be genuine and it must go back to what is spiritual and eternal with them and with us.

If we are going to do all this we will find that we need the spirit of pioneers, far we are in a new country so far as the world around us is concerned. We are in a wilderness. Not that there are not many sincere men and women who are endeavoring to perform uses to others to the very best of their ability and intelligence, but there is little or no realization of what is the relation between that: kind of external service and the inner spirit of religion. There is a very mistaken idea of what the spirit of religion is, and of its relation to our external services to others. There is where the trouble comes. Without that knowledge we do one of two things. We either leave the religious side out of it altogether and try to perform service to the neighbor. We may do this sincerely, and enthusiastically perform an external use, but it wont go any further than that, for we wont know how. On the other hand, we may be fired by a religious enthusiasm and we may try to put a sort of religious fanaticism into our work that wont really fit. It will make cranks of us and it will miss altogether in bringing those two things together, for we will only antagonize people. Spiritual values - the spirit of religion - cannot be brought together with the external uses of life by any conscious effort, unless we understand the laws of the relation between spiritual and natural things. If we dont know those, we are just as much at a loss as if we try to accomplish same external result without a knowledge of the scientific laws that apply.

I know perfectly well that in the last analysis our best efforts will only be clumsy in this respect. I know that the real thing that I am talking about has to be done by the Lord, because He alone has the wisdom and the power to accomplish it, but I also know that through the Revelation of the laws of the relation between spiritual and natural things as new given in the Writings, there is a new opportunity offered to men.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 57 This means that in their effort to understand and to carry out sincerely what they understand, they may have a part in what the Lord does which has never before been possible. I consider that to be the important difference that there is going to be in the future. Men will have an intelligent part in that work and will find their joy and their delight in it. It will thus be possible for the Lord to impart spiritual wisdom and spiritual delight, happiness and joy, that could not be given in any other way. This will bring heaven and earth into cooperative relationship with one another as never before. Isnt that what is meant by the Kingdom of God being with men? Is there anything that would be of greater value than to so infill the whole spirit of mans civilization that it is in cooperation with the Providence of the Lord - an operation of heaven among men. I would consider this as a different ideal of success toward which our education is to look, and I think that it requires a different kind of teaching; yet a kind of teaching that is no longer beyond our grasp, if we make the most of the opportunity that is given us by virtue of the truth now revealed in the Writings.



Section Two                     VOCATIONAL TRAINING
Chapter Eight

Now just a word about the last or third type of secular education. That, we find, has for its aim to acquire skill in a specific occupation, and includes what we call vocational training. The ambition to educate everyone is a relatively modern undertaking. Previously, education was reserved for certain classes of people and it was not thought feasible to educate everyone, but in very modern times the ideal of educating everyone has been rapidly spreading. This is especially so in our own country, but also in England and in some of the European countries. This idea has presented many problems new to education because of the fact that there are types of minds that do not respond to the older fern of book learning. The problem of how to train or educate them was taken up with a good deal of scientific interest, to try to find out by actual experiment how it might be done.

Vocational training in its beginning was merely a formalization of what had been done before through apprenticeship, by getting training under those who were actually doing the work. It was also an adaptation to the needs and requirements of mechanized industry. In its beginning, at any rate, it was hardly to be called education, if by that was meant any attempt to develop mental faculties. The object was to train the body in skills, and the mind was to take care of itself on its own, which to a considerable extent, astonishingly, it does. We learn a great deal, and gain a great deal in mental development by application to physical skill. There is no question about that, but nonetheless the type of training that was characteristic of vocational schools was lacking in its ability to rouse the interest in intellectual or mental development.

There have been a good many attempts to overcame this, and the more modern developments are in the direction of combining intellectual training with mechanical training and physical training. We have a good many illustrations of that. Throughout the country schools have been established with that idea, and have tried to carry it out, in various ways combining physical training and mental training. In many respects it has been found very successful, and more successful, even from the standpoint of certain types of intellectual development, than mechanical training and the purely academic studies of the traditional college course.

Yet here again the final attitude toward life, the recognition of spiritual values, makes a great difference in the type of education that is to be sought for those who are endeavoring merely to prepare themselves for a specific occupation. If we look no further than external success, the ability to become proficient in something so that we can make money, or so that we can have security against want, that in itself does not present a very exalted type of education. Nor does it produce results that will make for the truest welfare of society. Unless we recognize that the making of a living, the proficiency in an occupation is not an end but a means; not a means merely to a personal return, but a means toward performance of a higher use, unless we recognize that, then our concept of vocational training will fall short of what is needed. And that is the case today to a very large extent.



There is much failure to develop character, real character, because of the lack of any religious motive. If there is no religious motive, the development of character in the true sense is impossible. What so frequently is developed is the idea of apparent efficiency, and skill in bluff, the ability to get by with as little effort as possible, and the appearance of success. And even where that is discouraged because it doesnt work, because it will not bring lasting results even with reference to worldly success, still the inner character that I am speaking of fails to be developed. What is needed is a respect for use itself, for work as a use to others and use as a spiritual thing, not merely as a mechanical ministration to bodily or external wants. Anyone who really loves his work finds delight in the quality of whatever he produces and in giving a full return for whatever recognition he receives from society. When real character is developed, one would not stoop to accept success without a return in value. But there is no incentive to do that unless there is some recognition of a spiritual law; unless there is some idea of a life after death.

If it is only a matter of this world, why not make the most of the time we have and get the greatest return for ourselves, if that is all there is? Honor and character depend upon the acknowledgment of spiritual values. Without that they do not mean anything. So it because of extreme importance that in vocational education, as in the other two spoken of, religion shall be present as a theoretical background of our thought. And we must also study how that religion can be made the actual driving force back of our education, how it can be made to modify and develop our teaching so that a religious life will result. That cannot be done unless we have religion in the teaching itself, as part of it, not as something that is done somewhere else. It is the very center of what we are trying to accomplish in vocational as in all other training. There is also another thing involved in it, with reference to which there has been but little advance so far, and this is the development of the higher faculties of the mind by means of vocational training.

I believe very firmly in the ideal of a universal education. I think every human being born into the world has just as much right and just as much need for all we can do for him in the way of education as every other human being, regardless of social standing or intellectual background. Universal education is right. It is true that all people cannot be educated in the same way and that there is need for different kinds of schools adapted to the different types of mind. The fact that everybody is not able to take a college education, as it is now understood and taught, doesnt mean that everyone has not been created by the Lord with ability to receive intelligence and wisdom and to be perfected in those to eternity. Every human being born into the world has the capacity to receive intelligence and wisdom and of being perfected in these to eternity. And that means that if we are to cooperate with the Divine Providence, we also must seek to enrich the store of knowledge and intelligence that is made available.

I believe that the time will come when we will be able to do far more in this way through educational training than has ever been done up to the present time. I think it needs far more knowledge of the mind and the varieties of human intelligence and the modes of developing them than we now have.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 60 But I think that in the New Church the ideals should not be confined to a purely academic training that forces everyone through the same kind of knot-hole, and says if they cant achieve education by the means that society has developed, they can just do without it. I believe there should be every intention and effort in the future to develop education that is adapted to various forms of mind, but all with a view of developing mental faculties and appreciation of intellectual things and spiritual things.

We get discouraged, sometimes, in the classroom and think it is almost impossible to get the response we want, and yet, you know, if we take the long view and watch the development of scene of the pupils with whom we have been most discouraged, we find frequently that astonishing things happened that we tried to do and couldnt. They happened as a result of some kind of mental development that is going on without our help. Does that not indicate that the fault lies with us in the way we have approached it, rather than in the failure of the individual to receive it? I think, myself, that the study of the mind that is possible as a result of the Revelation now given in the Writings will open up entirely new fields of education.

However, let us realize that this is not going to happen suddenly. The fact that we see the possibility of it is not going to bring it to pass. The New Church at the present time is by no means in a position to set out, like Don Quixote, against that windmill in a grand reform movement that is going to change everything. We cant do it. We have to provide for the future of the children that are entrusted to us to the best of our ability under the present conditions, and to do that there is no question in my mind at the present tire we have to be satisfied with the giving of an education that is; best adapted to all as a general average. We are fortunate because while we have the disadvantage of having so few we cant provide adequately for all in the sense of having all kinds of education adapted to each form of mind, we do have far greater opportunity of individual study and attention to each one, and thus adaptation of our education to their needs in some degree.

This is the best we can do at the present time; but I look forward to the day when our schools have increased in size and we are able to provide a complete education. I look forward to the day when there will be far greater variety in types of education adapted to the needs of various forms of mind. And that: this will include what is now called vocational training. I have no doubt. But I believe that when that time comes, vocational training will be far more than a mere physical training of the body to fit a man for a specific occupation. It will have in view in the last analysis, fitting that man also for society in this world, for a use in the other world, and therefore the development of those God-given mental faculties that are the basis of all uses in the other world.

However, that is a long way off. We are not going to do it tomorrow and I only speak of it as an ideal. I pointed it out here because it means that we refuse to be satisfied with the educational goals of modern vocational training, primarily because they fail to recognize spiritual values and leave religion out, when religion with all that it means should be the center of that as well as of every other education.







I.        To prepare for complete living.

Must include Spiritual Life.
Love of Truthfacing all the facts. Determination to use this Truth, not merely for mechanical inventions, but to combat the evils of society by striking at their causes.

I.        To fit a man for his place in human society.
Must include the idea of adjustment to the Divine Law; not merely to existing conditions.

3.               To acquire skill in a specific occupation.
Must include the goal of Character, not merely external success or accomplishment.

Mastery of knowledge, not as a means of getting by but as a means of doing good work.

Devotion to use, not for the sake of reward, but for its own sake.



Section Two                      LEARNING AND THE AFFECTIONS
Chapter Nine

Now I want to speak about the fact that what we have been talking about is the ultimate goal and aim of education; what we are looking forward to in the future when we train children. But what about the immediate goals? What about the needs right in front of us that we are trying to meet now in any grade that we are teaching? In regard to this there is also a great difference in view that arises from the teaching of the Writings, and we would refer to No. 818 of the Apocalypse Revealed where we read that to learn is to perceive interiorly in ones self that a thing is so, which is to understand and thus to receive a knowledge. He who learns in any other way learns and doesnt learn, because he doesnt retain. Let me repeat that because it is very important: To learn is to perceive interiorly in ones self that a thing is so (not only to hear it in one ear and let it slip out the other), perceive in ones self that a thing is so, which is to understand and thus to receive a knowledge. He who learns in any other way learns and doesnt learn, because he doesnt retain.

The nest important question of the educator then is, what is retained? How can we be sure that things that are really important shall be retained? How can we know what should be retained? This has a great influence on our answer to the question when to teach so and so, what we should teach at any given age or period, and how we should teach it. And this all depends upon our answer to the question, When can certain things best be retained, what should be retained at a given age and how they can be taught so that they will be retained? Children cannot learn in this sense those things for which the mind is not yet prepared, things that the mind has not matured to the point where it is able to perceive within itself. This is really a matter of growth, not a matter of education, but a matter of growth or maturation. We may tell these things to children many, many times, and they may be impressed on their memory, but they wont be able to truly learn them because the children will not see them in themselves. They will not really understand them. They will just remember them as a formula.

One of the greatest difficulties in education, I think, lies in the fact that we very frequently try to teach things for which the mind is not yet prepared. We try to force an understanding prematurely, and so we waste a tremendous amount of effort trying to do something that cant be done. Therefore the most important thing - if we want to get at the immediate effects of our teaching - is to study the capacity of pupils so that we may be led to teach the things they are capable, in scene measure, of really understanding.

Now this doesnt mean that we must confine our teaching to those things that a child can fully understand. It certainly doesnt mean that he will understand all that is involved in what we teach. He may understand very little of what is involved in what we are teaching. As a matter of fact we, ourselves, understand but a very little of what is involved in what we are teaching, if you reflect on it; but there must be an element in what we are teaching that the child can understand, and that element must be the center of our approach.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 64 That must be where we focus the childs attention. Within this there will be deep mysteries that a child will vaguely perceive that will urge him on to learn more, but which he doesnt grasp at all at the time. There will be mysteries not yet unfolded, into the realization of which he can only came by growing. He gets hungrier for more because he perceives something of these mysteries that lie still buried in the little he has learned. But there must also be a meaning that he is prepared to grasp at the time, and which thus constitutes for him a delight, a revelation, an opening of something new to his mind that gives him joy.

Now let us ask, What determines a childs capacity to learn? Most fundamentally it is determined by the farm of mind with which he is endowed from birth. It is also determined primarily, not by his experience, but by his growth and maturation and the affections (the loves) that are active at the time. That is what determines his capacity. Experience is the means of awakening those affections, and out of his experience we find the means to arouse those affections in the classroom by illustrations of things that the child has experienced and that have given him delight. But what he will learn, in the sense of perceiving interiorly and in himself, will depend upon the affection that is roused, the delight, the interest.

Now let us note this. Modem educators understand this law in a general way, and they make a great deal of arousing the interest of children - motivating their learning, as they say. Let me point out that back of that there lies something much deeper, having a great effect on them, and that is the spiritual associations of the children. Infants, because they are in innocence, are surrounded by celestial angels. They are in the sphere of celestial affections and, because those affections are aroused in them by the celestial angels who are present with them, it is possible for them to learn the very deepest truths; to learn, mind you, in the sense of perceiving within themselves the very deepest truths, and to acquire by this means a perception of things that later they cant learn because they are no longer in those celestial associations. The only time when those deepest truths can be learned is at the time that the Lord has provided for that purpose, during the state that is called infancy. That is what it is for in the sight of the Lord above everything else - to learn certain things that are going to be permanently important to their later life, especially to their spiritual life after death. When those children grow older their innocence wanes, their proprial evils begin to appear; their attendant celestial angels retire and are replaced by spiritual angels. Then those deepest things can no longer be learned, but other things important to their life can be learned. I want to emphasize the fact that there is much more here than is understood by modern educators.

The capacities of children to learn at any given age are not so much dependent upon their experience as upon the affections that are developed by growth, and these affections are the result of influx from the spiritual world. They are produced by the spiritual associations of the angels. These associations change as children grow, and this change in spiritual associations is what produces the difference between infancy, childhood and youth.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 65 In infancy celestial angels are present. In childhood spiritual angels are present and in youth natural angels are present, and each produce different affections which are the ground for intellectual development and interest on the part of children. Only that which is received with affection remains.

The only things that are learned are things that are received with affection and interiorly understood, and these are the proper food of mental growth. Mental food, like physical food, must be given according to the age. The digestive agent in spiritual things and mental growth is the affection. It is this that takes up whatever is presented and absorbs it into the system, assimilates it, so that it becomes part of one. As the affections change with growth, the interests change also, and so we have the inclination and power to assimilate knowledge. Thus there are certain interests and affections that are normal for children at each different age, and to know these is of primary importance if we are to teach them, for only what is taken up by these affections will be learned. Everything else will be learned and yet not learned because it is not retained.

Now every teacher must have some end in view in order to teach intelligently. We must have a goal - an objective - clearly seen. There must be a remote end - a distant objective - toward which we are tending in everything that we teach, and this distant end or purpose on the part of a teacher will not be seen or realized by the child. Nonetheless it must be there. It is the sane with physical care. In choosing food, for instance, there must be an understanding of what is essential for a childs health, of what is essential for a childs health, of what is needed to make him strong as he grows older. This end must determine our choice of food far the child. The child doesnt care anything about that. He likes candy better, so there must also be an immediate end that the child can see if he is going to learn anything. You know how it is with the baby - when he doesnt want to eat, you have to think of some way to induce him to eat. You might have things that are very good for him, but they wont help him unless he eats them, and sometimes that requires considerable ingenuity. I think the same thing comes in teaching: unless we can get the pupils to at least want to learn enough so that they will listen, our teaching is pretty well in vain.

So there must be not only a distant end on the part of the teacher, but there must be an immediate end on the plane of the childs ability to understand. Thus we have to go back to a study of the state through which the child is passing, in order to know something about what are the immediate ends and immediate affections that we can appeal to. What are the affections that are normally active at a given age that can be roused as a means of learning? If we can find out these affections, then we can have some mode of getting the children to learn - to assimilate what we are teaching.

This is the same thing as finding out what mental food is appropriate to any given age. There is a great deal said in the Writings about spiritual foods - foods for the mind. There are three degrees of such spiritual foods and they correspond to the three heavens; that is, they correspond to those spiritual associations that characterize children in infancy, childhood and youth.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 66 We have celestial foods, spiritual foods and natural foods, and so long as the children are under the influence of celestial angels, it is the celestial foods that will be appropriate for them. When they come under spiritual angels it will be spiritual foods that will be appropriate, and so with natural angels - natural foods. Now if we study the ages - infancy to childhood to youth, 1 to 7, 7 to 14, 14 to 21, respectively, we discover dominant affections that characterize each age with all children. And if we study more minutely we will discover progressive stages of those affections in their rise, their noon-day and their decline. There is where we can find the key to education, to the kind of food that is necessary to each period and hew it may be palatably and attractively prepared and presented.

We cannot intelligently determine what should be the subject matter of education at any age without a knowledge of these successive stages of mental growth. Now this is a truth that has been seen in general by modern educators, and this gave rise to certain theories of education that are in part true. For instance, it has been much emphasized in modern education that all instruction must have some immediate application; must be seen by the child to have some use; and must be such that it can be applied immediately so that the child can do something with it. And this is emphasized against the older method of cramming the minds of children with knowledges that they had no idea what they were all about, or why they should learn them. They just had to learn them as a task that seemed to the child unreasonable, and to which he could only be compelled by fear of punishment or by reward. There was no attempt to appeal to any delight in the learning itself. It is a revolt against that kind of education that has developed the modern view.

There has now been very generally accepted the idea that the child must find delight in learning if it is to be valuable to him, and to that end he must see some use, scene purpose. Now I say that is all true. The only criticism we have of it is that the interpretation of it in modern education we regard as too narrowly utilitarian, not taking into account the whole range of the childs development, his spiritual affections as well as his purely natural delights. The tendency is to confine the efforts largely to practical applications which are obvious to the child and thus can be recognized by him as something of value and use. That is all very well but it doesnt do to have out those deeper delights that are the result of spiritual associations. It doesnt do to ignore what the Writings call the storing up of remains which have nothing to do with purely utilitarian objectives, but which reach deeper than that to the inner states of the child.

Acknowledge of those internal states of children is necessary if we are to truly meet: their needs at any age, for in these internal states of children lie the most important purpose in his growth in the sight of the Lord. All his external interests are merely means to build up the internal life of the child. You might have all .those external things without building up that internal life, in which case they wouldnt accomplish their purpose. Therefore, if you take a purely utilitarian view and talk about the childs external interests and appealing to them without having any knowledge or concern about those internal states I have been speaking about, you may go very wrong. You may be working against the childs development rather than for it, as will come out more clearly in a few minutes.



To initiate children into study and learning from an idea of what is useful and practical by merely transplanting them into an imitation of adult life is apt to develop proprial affections and proprial delights that are not what is really intended, and to neglect the normal delights that belong to their own age. Just make children feel their own importance in what they can accomplish in the realm of adult life and you will see what I mean. You stimulate in them a false attitude as to their relation to the world around them, and at the same time you are preventing them from developing the kind of affections that are normal to them at their age.

Of course the attitude of modern educators in this regard is based on the idea that children are naturally inherently good. If we just give them an opportunity to develop in their own way they will develop the good qualities and will overcome the evil ones. That also is a revolt against the old idea of the utter depravity of human nature, but it doesnt express the truth because children are no more inherently good than they are inherently evil, and they will not spontaneously develop the good. The only tray in which children can be led to develop what is good and reject what is evil is by the building up of those internal states I have been speaking of that come from the influence of the angels that are with them. If we neglect that, we are neglecting the only means by which the child is able to overcome his evil heredity.

To found our educational practice on the view that a child is inherently good and will spontaneously reject bad things and develop good ones - a view that is not true - introduces into education practices that are more subtly injurious to the internal states of children than even the older repressive method. This is more subtle. We dont notice it so much because we get results but the truth is that we are increasing and encouraging those internal qualities that are evil in the child more than is the case where we are repressive. It is worse - the philosophy of modern education. This is our chief criticism of it. It is directed admirably towards the state of mind which a reliance on self and on inner pride in his own achievement along with contempt for others and for older people. There is an attitude of resistance to any guidance from without by older people. This closes his mind against the reception of the influx from the angels of the other world that are the very means whereby the Lord is attempting to develop what is good with the child.

Now if this is true, then from our standpoint we must have this principle in mind: that which is of most use to the child - real use to him - at any stage of his mental growth is that which must fully enriches his reception of the heavenly influences of those angels that are present with him at that time. This is the real use, the great use; not learning to take delight in something that truly belongs to adults, or to think he can accomplish such things when he is not old enough. The greatest use is to emphasize and increase with him the reception of those heavenly influxes that are called remains, which call forth the internal delights peculiar to his age which arise from his spiritual associations.

These delights must be felt by the child as his own higher end.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 68 That is, something that he can possess and enjoy from himself, from within, and not as something impressed upon him by others that is alien to his life, that stifles his own independence. And if they are to be felt in this way the child himself must appear to attain to them by his own efforts. They are first felt as a result of adult guidance which tends to open them up and increase their effect, but the child - with help not too obvious - must be led to return to then on his own initiative. To do this he will have to resist in his own little childish way the opposite affections.

Now if we examine this we see that it has all the elements of human life in it. It has an immediate objective. There is an inspired ambition. There is a force to be overcome. There is a sense of resistance and of accomplishment on the part of the child, thus all that makes human life as we know it. The fact is that children can only have all this in the sphere and with the help of adults. They cannot have it by themselves. That is why the Lord gives them to us, places them under our care and gives us the responsibility for them. They cannot have all that without the help of adults. But at the same time the adults who are helping them can realize that by suggestion and by surrounding them with a sphere in the midst of which they will grow, they can be given a sense that they are doing it themselves. Therein lies the greatest element: in their development, for this is how they learn gradually what is meant by resisting evil - in later life shunning evils as of ones self and at the same time acknowledging that it is from the Lord. Little children learn to do this from the sphere of parents and teachers.

Now note that the ideal of education should be, first, to appeal to the good affections that are normal to a child at each age, due to influx from the angels who are present; and second, to have the child, as it were, discover these affections for himself, feel them in himself as if they were his own, and thus struggle to retain them and return to them whenever he comes into his proprial delights. And this means that we recognize education as a process of immediate living, not something that is just getting a child ready to live after a while when he grows up. He has to live now, and as he lives now so will he grow. For this reason we have to regard the immediate ends, not just the distant ends, but the immediate ends of our educational processes. But also let us understand it must be a kind of living now that is appropriate to the child in his own childish state, and not a kind of living that we impose on him that belongs to adult years. That is the important thing.

How can we do this unless we discover something about what life is appropriate to a child at a given age, what food will appeal to him, what will attract his attention and interest, what are the normal ambitions that can be stirred as if by himself so that he will struggle to retain the influx that comes from heaven and resist his proprial affections. How can we do this unless we know something about children, about the states through which they are passing and the normal processes of their mental growth?

Now the great truth that underlies the theory of evolution, and that has given it its real power and prestige, is not the idea that man has some from a beast, but the great truth that all things are joined in a perfect chain of connection. That which comes first forms the foundation of all that is to follow.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 69 Nothing can rise here that has not had its beginning there. Nothing can exist in the present which is not bound up as it were in the same bundle with all the past, and the roots of every future development are ever being formed in the soil of the eternal present. That is a truth that has been brought home to people by the discoveries in the field of evolution.

This is true of all things an every plane. It is true of the earth in her progressions from a whirling mass of third and fourth finites to a fully inhabited globe. It is true of the development of every kingdom of nature from first creation, and of every individual organism in its growth, and therefore this same law applies to the human mind and its development. Man is so formed that he must grow from infancy to childhood to youth in order to attain manhood. Why? Because each step in this development is necessary and must make a necessary contribution, something of vital importance and of eternal value to the individual man that the Lord foresees and is providing for. Every one of these steps and stages is provided in the Divine Providence because of its eternal purpose, not merely a temporary purpose, but an eternal end which is needed for mans eternal life.

For this reason no one can escape this process of growth. No one can jump from infancy to manhood without traversing the intervening states of childhood and youth. Each state follows the other in perfect order and must be built on the other; it must grow out of the other as out of soil, and it cannot be produced in any other way. Infancy, childhood, youth - each one in succession - is preliminary to adult life, and each is marked by certain characteristics that are universal to the human race. There may be infinite variety with different nationalities and races even as with individuals; one may advance more rapidly along the road than another. One may linger here and hasten there. There may be millions of differences of disposition and temperament, circumstances and environment. But in spite of all these differences, there is a marvelous uniformity - a marvelous similarity - that marks each step of mans preparatory growth the world over. Nobody is going to mistake an infant for a youth, I dont care where he is. And how similar they are just observe children in different parts of the world, children of different races, children of utterly different background, of education and environment, and see how similar they are! Just observe children in different parts of the world, children of different races, children of utterly different background, of education and environment, and see how similar they are. They play the same way, do the same kind of things. It is astonishing! Take the little Basuto children, little Zulus in South Africa. We went to the school there, listened to their recitations. They sang for us; they went out and played and we went out and watched them. The only difference was they were black. It is astonishing. We get so absorbed in the differences that we lose sight of the fact of the marvelous similarity in all these childhood states.

In this similarity lies the key to what is the Divine end. Here is where we find the key to what the Lord is trying to do, for it is of Divine Providence that they should be similar. There is something inherent in human nature that makes them the same everywhere in regard to these fundamental characteristics. That is the most important thing of all if we want to understand what each of these ages is for. So it is not without significance that they are so similar, and if we would effectively meet the needs of children, we must understand the Divine purpose that makes people so similar at every stage of their growth. Certainly the Lord by means of each step of mental development is providing something of lasting value.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 70 The Lord foresees the future. He foreknows the highest things of man and in every way He lays the foundation for those future things during all the years of immaturity. In His sight nothing is trivial or inconsequential. Every least thing that is characteristic of infants, of childhood and youth, is important for us to know, necessary for us; to understand if we are to cooperate with the Divine end in education.

Now we have talked a good deal about cooperating with the Lord. What does it mean in a practical sense? The words sound all right, but unless we really know what it means for every stage, all our educational work doesnt amount to anything. We must determine what our educational work shall be, or should be, by first understanding what it is the Lord is doing with the child. Then can we begin to understand how we can help, instead of interfering with that Divine work. And therefore we must ask ourselves in regard to each one of these stages of development: What is it for? What is the Lord doing with each one? Not what will the Lord do in adult life, but what is He doing now? During infancy what is He doing; during childhood what is He doing; during youth what is He doing? And this is not just as to general purpose. That would not help us much with regard to a whole period of seven years when we have to teach the child every year. We have to see more than that if we are going to be intelligent in our cooperation with the Lord. We have to see something of what the Lord is doing in those intervening steps that go to make up that seven-year period, for it is those particular steps and stages that are the practical things we have to deal with in the work of education. We cant teach a child and accomplish what is to be done in seven years and just teach him every day that general thing which is to be accomplished in seven years. It isnt done all at once.

Here too the law applies that each thing must be built up step by step, and what we accomplish in the end will only be the result of what has been done at every step of that development. We have to arrange a curriculum year by year, month to month, week to week, day to day. We have to meet the states of children as they arise. Surely we have to know something about this if we are going to help them. We should study the human mind to know its characteristics at every stage of growth, and to know the relation of one stage to the next, and then especially as to those universal things in which all children are alike. This is to discover something of what the Lord is doing, of what in His sight is most vital to do at each stage. There are characteristics of normal children at every age, and there are characteristics of the way in which each general state develops. There are affections, interests and delights which naturally belong to each age which are inherent in the age itself, and far which the Lord provides in spite of all local or temporary conditions, racial background, nationality, heredity, environment. We still find these delights coming along one after the other, these interests roused one after the other, that can be appealed to. If we understand these, and their use in later life, then we can come as near as it is humanly possible to an understanding of what is the essential to be met at each stage and thus how we can best cooperate with what the Lord is doing.





AC 1050(2):       States of innocence, charity, and mercy, man does not learn. He receives them as a gift from the Lord.

AC 9164(2):       They who learn knowledge in order that they may be perfected in the faith of love are in the use of all uses.

AC 2049(3):       Unless knowledges are learned for the sake of life they are of no use. (A. 3905(2))

AC 2704(2):       They who are in the affection of knowing and learning truths are easily, and as it were, spontaneously imbued with truths.

AC 3175:              Man must receive all truth by learning.

AC 3982(2):       Many things are learned in infancy and childhood that through them he may learn more useful things. Afterwards the former things are almost obliterated.

AC 5126:              Childhood to adolescence man is opened to interior natural by learning what is decorous, civil, and honest. Adolescence to manhood by learning truths and goods of civil and moral life from the Word. Rational opened by doing these truths.

AC 351(3):       To become intelligent and wise man must learn many things, both of heaven and of the world. By learning and applying to life the interior sight and affection are perfected.

HD 23(6):       Unless man learns truth, good cannot inflow.

AR 618:              To learn is to perceive interiorly in ones self that it is so. (E 859).

AE 803:              Let a man learn from infancy to adolescence that God is One, that the Lord is that God, that the Word is holy, that there is a heaven and a hell, and what is sin, and to be in illustration.


AC 245(3):       The order of teaching and learning is from the most general things.

AC 3309(3):       Fishers - those who teach from sensuous truths. Hunters - from scientifics and doctrine.

AC 4686:              Binding sheaves -- teaching from doctrine.

AC 5952:              The Lord does not openly teach truths, but He leads through good to think what is true.



DP 162:              Man is led and taught by the Lord alone.

DP 165:              Led by influx and taught by illustration.

DP 174:              In external things man is led and taught by the Lord, but to all appearance as by himself,

Food (Alimentum)

AC 9572:2:       Food in the other life is represented according to a longing for knowledges and wisdom. Hence it is that food = spiritual nourishment.

CL 133:       Man does not know (at first) the food that is good for him. (Alimentum)

Ad. 965:              Foods are the knowledge of things.

Food (Cilus)

AC 56:              Celestial, spiritual, and natural food described. (Infancy, childhood, and youth)

AC 57:              Celestial food = fruit. Spiritual food = seed producing fruit.

AC 677:              Instruction in things which may serve as means. These are food. Every man has his peculiar and his proper food.

AC 678:              Food especially = delights by which man learns.

AC 1470:              Knowledge is the food of the spirit. Communicated to the external man to the end that external man may be adapted to internal. Celestial, spiritual, and natural food described.

AC 1973:              Spirits no sense of taste but appetite for knowledge.

AC 3085:              Heavenly food = intelligence and wisdom.

AC 3114:              Natural food = food for the natural man compared to straw for camels. Scientifics.

AC 35705:        All food not taken into the body. Several uses mentioned. Compared with things learned in childhood.

AC 4792:              Spiritual food is knowledge, intelligence and wisdom. By this the spirits grow up.

AC 5293:              Spiritual and natural food. AC 5576, 5579, 6078, 6110, 8352; CL 6e; AE 1226; SD 178, 6088; AE 235, 314, 1084

CLJ 77:       African children. SD 6095.

AR 224(3):       Man knows spiritual food and longs for it as an animal knows natural food and is hungry for it.



Chapter Ten

We have been stressing the idea that there are characteristics that are common to all children at each age, and that we have to see what those characteristics are in order to understand the real purpose of each age. It should be understood that this necessity arises even if we are thinking of the innumerable varieties that we find among children, for it is impossible to measure varieties or have any idea of what they mean unless we have a plane of reference - unless we have some constant to which to refer the varieties. You may have points scattered all over a blackboard that mean nothing. If you draw a basic line and find the relation of those points to that line you begin to understand something. So when a surveyor goes out to survey a property, the first thing he has to do is to establish a bench mark - a basic line from which to measure - in order to have it mean anything. So it is with the qualities we are speaking about. There are certain fundamentals, qualities and characteristics that we find the same with all children and they are our bench mark. They are our plane of reference, our basic line from which we can measure everything else. If we do not know what they are, then it is vain for us to try to understand the varieties.

So our first test in approaching the problem of education is to determine what is the Lords purpose in any age. Why has He ordained that all men must pass through a certain age or stage of development, and what is the goal toward which that age contributes? What the Lords purpose is will be seen in these things that are common to all children, for here is where we find something that has been provided by the Lord, and that He allows nothing to interfere with. The second question we have to ask ourselves is this. If we see a certain Divine end and purpose at a given age, what can we do to contribute toward the accomplishment of that purpose? How can human influences be brought to bear pressure in the same direction? How can we help to remove the external obstacles that stand in the way of the highest development of each age, of those things that are really valuable?

For as we have pointed out many times, we can either help or interfere with that Divine work. Every influence that we exert will be the right direction or the wrong direction, and we cant help exerting influences. Children are given us to take care of. We have to provide for them. So if our influence is going to be in the right direction, we have to understand, in the first place, what the direction is, and then how we can assist by education in developing the child in that direction. Now that is what we would call a teachers purpose. First, there is the Lords purpose, then comes the teachers purpose. In every particular stage of our educational work we have to see a teachers purpose, with reference to age, or with what we want to accomplish by all our work, but also with the relation of this to every subject on the curriculum if we are going to teach intelligently. What does every subject contribute to the accomplishment of that purpose? Why do we teach this and not that? Unless everything we teach is helping to accomplish the fundamental aim and purpose of that age, what is the use of it? How can we expect to be teaching it intelligently unless we are sure we are accomplishing something by means of it?

Now, as a matter of fact, in modern education practice, to a very large extent, the purpose is to pass examinations to get to the next grade, to meet the requirements of the high school, and from the high school to meet the requirements of the college, and every subject is determined as to how far it fulfills that purpose.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 74 This isnt sufficient. Suppose there is something wrong with what the high school requires, and what the college requires, in relation to the things that are really essential for the child to have at the time. Suppose in order to meet the requirements of the high school or college we have to do something for the little child that is not the best for him at his age, which is very often the case. Then it becomes obvious that that goal is not sufficient. Many educators have revolted against this tyranny of the high school over a lower school, imposing goals that are not in accord with the real best interests of the children.

If we are not going to follow that path, then we must have some other goal which is really based on something that we clearly see and rationally understand. To do this we have to study each subject on the curriculum and determine why it is there, why it should be taught at a certain age, what its relation is to the other things we are teaching, what is the specific contribution that this subject can make that the other subjects cannot. Now that is not a simple matter, I assure you. It is not easy to reach such conclusions and have them clearly defined in our own mind. Yet as a matter of fact only in the degree that we do this, will we be able to develop a rational system of education and not just follow custom, or what other people have done, or what has been done in the past.

It is along these lines that we have been struggling in our New Church schools. The differences that we find in our curriculum, particularly in the curriculum of the Elementary School as it has been worked out, represent a first attempt to go in that direction, and to see, to understand, what we are doing from the point of view of following the indications given us in the writings.

Now supposing that we have done all that, then we come face to face with a class of children, and at once we have to interpret all that with reference to the particular children that we have before us. That is when we begin to shift our attention so as to attempt to understand particular children, and to see how this philosophy of education is to be applied to these children - not to any others - but these particular ones. Unless we can reach the heart of the child that is in front of us, unless we can touch his love and affection, all our philosophizing will be wide of the mark. It wont accomplish its purpose. We might have a class that is very carefully prepared for all children, and it would not reach the particular ones we have at all.

So you see when I speak about our studying the qualities that are common to all children, it is not in the least with the intention of minimizing the importance of understanding the varieties. It is rarely showing that we cant in any other way understand the varieties. We cant understand them just by looking at the varieties, do you see? We have to have something to which to refer them, to compare them, in order to have any understandable basis. When we come to study our own children that are right in front of us, and seek to understand their change in states, the affections that actually stir them, the interests that can be appealed to - that is when we come to discover a childs purpose.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 75 We talked about the Lords purpose in our teaching and the teachers purpose in our teaching. There must also be a childs purpose in learning, and we must understand what that is in order that we can stimulate the child to cooperate with those purposes which he doesnt see but of which we have some idea. Teaching is successful when all three of these things coincide: when the Lords purpose is seen, when the teachers purpose is in accord with the purpose of the Lord, and when the teacher is successful in rousing a childs purpose that is in the same direction.

Now you may think this is impossible, and often it is or seem; to be impossible. The truth is that it is so complex we cant assure ourselves that we will do it. We can try to do it, and with help and guidance from the Writings we can approximate it from time to time, but the states of children are too complex far us to analyze. We cannot see deeply enough into their little minds to see exactly what are the affections that are stirring them. We will often be mistaken in what we attempt to appeal to in them, and the result is that the real guidance of their education is kept by the Lord in His own hands. While we are trying to do our best, the Lord frequently does something else with the child, and in the child, than what we had intended. What He does is infinitely better for the child than what we can do, but that is no reason for us to get discouraged. Lets be satisfied that it has to be so, and that the real guidance of the childs life shall be in the Lords hands and not in our hands. But lets try by all means to exert our influence in the right direction, to cooperate with the Lord in what we are doing. That is the ideal of education as I see it.

Now let us note that while it is by far the most important thing to provide for the present and immediate needs of children, we will be unable to do this unless we clearly see the distant goals toward which the Lord is leading. Unless we have a clear idea of the future, we cannot guide the present. We may be sure that if the immediate effects of our education are in accord with the Divine Order and Divine Providence the future will take care of itself. Of that we can be sure. But if we do not have any idea of what the future goal is, we can have no assurance that our immediate effects are in accord with it. To understand what is best for the child in his present state, whatever that may be, and thus be in a position to cooperate rationally with the Lords education of the child, we must foresee the future to same extent and consciously prepare for it. So it is not enough merely to look at the present of the child. We must have ultimate aim in our education and have them continually in mind, even while we are seeking to promote the childs immediate welfare. Something has been revealed as to the successive states of childhood, and whatever has been revealed to us about them must be central in our thought and effort to educate. Something also has been revealed concerning adult life toward which all education points, and the understanding of this is of extreme importance to the educator - what adult life is and hew it is distinguished from infancy, childhood and youth.

What are those special characteristics that cant be attained in infancy, childhood or youth, but that belong only to adult age, and yet are the fruit that is to be garnered from all the seeds are planted in infancy, childhood and youth? What is the result that we want to accomplish when the child has completed his education and has started on his own life?


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 76 Educators have faced this question through all the ages and the general idea has been, What kind of man or woman do we want to make by our education? The answers have been various and they have all been too limited. None has been wholly satisfactory. The nature of the answer has depended upon the temper of the time, upon the nationality and circumstances and conditions under which men were working at the time, upon the limits of the experience and insight of those educators who formulated them.

We find all of the answers lacking in certain respects that are important. Study them - the various goals that have been presented and the kind of people that they have been trying to make by education in different stages of its history - and you will see that each one has over-emphasized one particular quality to the detriment of the others. How can we avoid doing likewise? We are in the same situation, and we are faced with the same practical questions. However, there are certain things that have been revealed about adult life, certain things that are pointed out in the Writings as essential to mans regeneration. These certainly are the goals of the Divine Providence in education. If it is true that the supreme purpose of growth and development is a preparation for regeneration, then we ought to try to understand these revealed qualities and characteristics, and something of how education can prepare for them.



Section Three                            THE ULTIMATE AIMS OF EDUCATION
Chapter One


There are certain things that cannot be enjoyed until adult age is reached. These are the product of growth and maturity and without them regeneration is impossible. Among these things are the following: first, free choice, second, rational judgment; third, individual conscience; fourth, personal character, and finally, responsible use to society. All these things are accomplishments that come as a result of growth and development from infancy, childhood and youth to adult age and they cannot be achieved without such growth and development.

Freedom of choice (in spiritual things), as we shall see presently, is not possible in childhood. It is the product of maturity, far it presupposes a knowledge of truth and good, falsity and evil, which can only be acquired gradually through learning, education and experience.

But first we shalt consider briefly what is meant by free will. With reference to this there is great difference of opinion among educational thinkers. If we think of free will merely as the power of making a choice between two things - the equilibrium that the Writings speak of, or balance that is preserved between good and evil so that man may make a choice of one or the other - if we think of that as free will, then that belongs to everybody. That is preserved by the Lord, irrespective of what we do. It cannot be provided by man by any possible kind of education, nor can it be destroyed by man, either through neglect or by intentional efforts at domination. Man can control the actions of children; he can deeply influence their minds, their thoughts, their beliefs, their ideals. But whatever influence this may have, there is stilt preserved by the Lord a balance of equilibrium within the childs mind between what he knows or believes to be right, and what he knows or thinks to be wrong. Essentially that balance or equilibrium is the same freedom, no matter what a child has been taught. If he chooses right he makes the best choice he can. That is all any of us can do, and it is all the Lord asks of us.

But it is not this equilibrium itself with which we are concerned as educators, but with two things that are possible because the Lord provides this equilibrium. First we are concerned with the plane on which the choice is made, and with that we have something to do. By teaching, training and education we can provide for a choice on a higher and higher plane, if the education is in the right direction. Or if it is in the wrong direction, we can prevent a choice on a higher plane by depriving the children of the necessary knowledge, the necessary means of ascending to that plane of thought.

Thus we can provide for a choice that is more and more nearly a true one by education. Without teaching and experience children mistake appearance for the truth and then they think from those appearances as if they were the truth. When they make a choice of what to them is right, they are choosing an appearance that is not the truth. It is a fallacy. Teaching can help to correct this. Also children may, without instruction and without training, naturally choose evils, mistaking them for goods.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 78 They dont see the difference. It is possible for children to be taught that evils are goods. If they then choose them, supposing they are goods, they are making the best choice they can. That choice is accepted by the Lord as something with which He can work and by means of which He can lead them. But whether such a choice is of evil or something that is more nearly good depends upon the teaching and training they are given, and for this we are responsible. The choice between a fallacy and a falsity or between an evil mistaken for good and a good that is mistaken for evil - that doesnt take away a free choice or the hope of salvation. The only thing it: does is to hold the choice on a lower plane. So far as truth can be taught, so far as good can be taught, it is possible to raise that plane, to elevate it.

It is interesting to note the teaching concerning this in the Coronis No. 29. It says there that every man has a natural mind and a spiritual mind, distinct from each other like two stories of one house that are connected by stairs. In the upper story dwell the master and the mistress with their children, and in the lower story dwell the servants. Now it says the spiritual mind or upper story of this house is not opened in infancy but from early childhood it begins to be opened. It is opened step by step, for there is given to every man from birth the faculty, and afterwards the power, of procuring for himself steps by which he may ascend and confer with the master and the mistress, and then descend and execute their demands or commands. This power, it says, is given him through the endowment of free choice in spiritual things. Now keep that picture in mind. It gives a concrete idea of what we are talking about.

Here is a little child that is born in complete ignorance. He doesnt have any basis of choice or judgment whatsoever. But in childhood when he begins to learn things, and when he goes to school and can learn systematically, he comes to the point where he can progressively learn how to make those choices. In so doing he ascends steps, as it were, toward that rational judgment that is possible in adult age. If our education is in the right direction; that is, if we are teaching him as he goes along to see what is more nearly true and more nearly good than he saw before, then he is ascending step by step toward that spiritual mind which he can only enter into at adult age. But if we are not doing this, but teaching him false things as true and evil things as good, then he remains down here. He cannot ascend. He remains an a lower plane with his choices. It is just the same so far as he is concerned; he is doing the best he can. Still we have retarded and held back his ability to enter into the purpose and end of adult life that the Lord had in view. That is the first thing we can do by education - to raise the plane of choice.

The second thing we can do is to influence him to make the choice in the right direction on whatever plane he may be. A child may have a great deal of knowledge and understanding so that he can see what is right and wrong, but if at the same time his self-will is allowed to develop and became dominant so that, in spite of all his knowledge, he chooses the things he wants rather than what is right, then all our elevation is of no use. In this case the more perfect the training, the higher the intellectual achievement, the greater is the power for evil instead of good.



Now we say influence the direction of that choice, and yet as a matter of fact the choice must be the childs - not ours. It must be made by the individual, not imposed on him. No one can do it for him. When we reach adult age, unless we make choices of bur own, we are not assuming the responsibilities of our age. Everything that we accept and follow merely because of the way we have been taught; merely because of the tradition that has come down to us; merely because it is the simplest and easiest way to go - that doesnt minister to our regeneration. It doesnt mean anything from the standpoint of our spiritual development, and so in all the training of childhood we must keep this in view. We must so train children that they will assume the responsibility of making the choice themselves, not merely following the easiest road and going in the direction of the strongest impulse that comes to them from without. This is the basis of what we call character - the ability to choose in the right direction for oneself.

One of the most important things in connection with educational philosophy is to understand the difference between the free choice that exists in childhood and the free choice that belongs to adults. Confusion with reference to this is one of the great difficulties with modern educational philosophy. It is almost as if it were accepted that children would be able to make the same kinds of choices as adults, just so far as they know, which is not the case for reasons that we shall see.

We have said that there are two things in connection with free choice - the plane on which it may be made and the direction in which the choice is made. Instruction has to do with the plane of choice. Education has to do with the direction of choice. Or, to put it in another way, an appeal to the understanding has to do with plane of choice, but the appeal to the will has to do with the direction of choice. The goal of education and instruction is that there may be at adult age a free choice in the right direction and on the highest possible plane. That is the object.

We are told that free choice exists with children as well as with adults, but that it is not a real free choice on the part of the children, However, there is a great deal of modern educational theory based on the idea that it is a real free choice on the part of the children. We are told in the Writings that the free choice of children emulates - imitates - the free choice of adult age and approximates it more closely as the child grows older, but the great distinction between the two should not be lost sight of. They cannot be confused without going wrong in our judgments about children.

The essential difference between free choice in childhood and free choice in adult life is .that children have no fixed point from which to make a judgment for themselves. They make their choice according to the way they have been taught, according to the opinions that have been given them by adults and according to the sphere of adult people that surrounds them. Thus the free will of childhood is a resultant of environmental forces, modified by nothing except the natural inherited tastes and dispositions of the child that are, as it were, instinctive. Free will with children is just the result of these environmental forces, modified by heredity, but not modified by rational judgment.



It may be said that children are constantly in a saturated solution of emotions, out of which saturated solution one or another impulse may be precipitated, and whichever-one happens to be precipitated carries the child along with it as on a current because there is no internal opposition except what comes from heredity, which with the child is nothing but another emotion. Children are stirred in any direction by the winds of emotion and when they are carried along on a current of emotion in which they are saturated at the time, it appears to them that they are going the way they want to go, and that therefore they are free. They are really just yielding to the delight at the time that is imposed upon them from without.

The only thing that offers resistance to their environmental forces, as I have said, is their inherited nature and disposition. Now this inherited nature and disposition - whatever its quality may be, and it can be very, very various - nonetheless all rotates around self as the center. Self is the center of our inherited universe. If we follow the impulse of our heredity as one author put it, Our cosmos is all ego. And therefore when children resist what comes from their environment simply on the basis of their own inherited disposition, it is from an insistence upon self-will as against the guidance of others - parents, teachers, and others. This is a resistance of self-will. If children grow up resisting from self-will, unchecked, that resistance to the teaching and guidance of their parents and teachers will become resistance to any leading whatever, including the leading of the Lord through the Word. The only way in which children can be introduced into a resistance to their self-will from the Word, from Divine Revelation, from an acknowledgment of a Divine Law, is for them to be trained to resist their self-will first, from what they have been taught by others to be right or wrong. There is no other way.

Now children can make a choice of what they have been taught as against what their self-will prompts them to do. Thus they can make a choice in accordance with their training, and resist their impulses of self-will. This is what is to childhood a conscience, but let it: be understood they cannot make that resistance except in the sphere of others. If they are entirely out of the sphere of older people with whom these things that are right and wrong have been confirmed and are believed in and followed; if they get out of that sphere and are allowed merely to come into the sphere of their own inherited nature, then they cannot make the choice. me sphere of their inherited nature is too strong and will overpower any tendency that has been induced from without. If they are to make the choice in the right direction they must be kept within the sphere of adults.

Now if we understand that clearly, we realize that the problem of education is far more than a problem of simply telling children what is right and what is wrong. We may tell them and they clearly understand, but when they get out of the sphere of one who believes in what is right and into a sphere that is contrary to it, they have no internal resistance of their own. They have no lever, no fulcrum, with which to hold on to one as against another. We see that all the time. That is the reason why we have to be careful of our childrens associations. If they are allowed to associate and come under the influence of people who are teaching, and leading them the wrong way, then we are putting, them in grave danger because they have no internal power of resistance against that sphere as yet.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 81 If we allow them to go among playmates who are leading them the wrong way, then we are putting them in danger because we are allowing them delights contrary to what we would like them to follow, and these are too strong for them. They will simply follow the current without any ability to resist them. This is the fundamental reason why they have to be under adult guidance.

Educators all know this, but sometimes their educational philosophy doesnt allow for it. They attempt to put the children into a position where they have to make a choice of their own as if they did have the power and the ability to resist the spheres around them. The reason is that it is not generally known why children do not have this power to resist. It is thought that the power to resist comes altogether from knowledge, and so far as children know what is right and what is wrong they have the same power to resist as adults have. But resistance is not a matter of knowledge. It is a matter of the will and the only will the children have is either their inherited will or a will that has been insinuated from others, from the delights of others. That is the only will they have. They have not yet come to the point where they can choose between these two as to which shall be their own will.

The reason is that our fixed ability to choose, to hold to a choice against all external influences, comes from the other world. It comes from the fact that we have chosen certain associations in the other world - the world of spirits - and have learned how to retain them as against others. You remember we pointed out that there are two things; that make up all our consciousness. One is an influx or affection or emotion from the spiritual world. The other is an afflux of knowledge from without, and every knowledge has to be accompanied with affection. Now it doesnt matter how much we teach children what is right and wrong, unless those knowledges are associated with the right affections; unless the knowledges are held in the sphere of those right affections until children have reached a point where they can hold themselves in such a sphere, there is no hope of their being educated as well as instructed. Education has to do with the direction of their choice and that is all a matter of the sphere - the delight - in which they are kept. That is what they feel is their will.

When children, however, make a choice in the sphere of adults they can appear to do it from themselves. They can feel that they are doing it from themselves, and this is the choice that the Writings say emulates free choice. Remains of heavenly delights can be stored up with them so far as, in the sphere of adults, they can be led to make a choice and feel it as their own. This is the essence of education - to have children surrounded by such a sphere. Not an obvious one that causes them to feel pushed, but a sphere of delight which is insinuated so that they axle in that sphere and feel as if it were their own choice. As this happens, then the influx from heaven is felt consciously with delight by the children, and that delight grows in power with them as they make the choice, feeling it to be their own. In this way a will to choose in the right direction, a will to choose what is heavenly, and is in accord with the Word and Divine Law, as against their self-will, can be gradually formed in their minds; nurtured as it were in an egg until it is ready to be hatched and begin its own independent life. It is an embryonic will that is being formed with them while they are children, a will that has to be in the protecting sphere of older people - of adults.



Another thing that is very important for us to know is that it is impossible for children to choose between spiritual things and natural things. They dont know what these are. All childrens knowledge is natural. We may teach them about spiritual things, teach them about the Lord, about the Word, about the life after death, about mans regeneration. We can teach them all these things, but their idea of them will be natural as long as they are children. They cannot conceive a spiritual idea. And therefore when they make a choice between what they are taught is good and what they are taught is evil, it is not really a choice between good and evil. It is a choice between what represents good and what represents evil. This is because good in itself is spiritual and truth in itself is spiritual. So all we can give to children by instruction, by stories, by parables, by external examples, is something that represents that - a picture of it. We can give them this picture of what is good and that picture of what is evil, and they can learn to choose the good picture over the evil picture, but they havent yet seen what it represents. Nonetheless, when they choose between what represents the good as against what represents the evil, then there is an influx of angels and good spirits from the other world with them into that representation, insinuating the delights of heaven, for the angels are in what is represented - not the representation. They are in the good and the truth itself that is represented. Their delight is in the good and truth itself as it is represented, and they inflow then into the children and insinuate those delights with them.

This is well illustrated in what is said in the Writings about charity. (Note the following numbers: AC 3688, 9209, and TCR 426, 428) All these treat of .the subject of charity and they distinguish between the kind of charity that can be exercised by children and the kind of charity that belongs to adults. As a matter of fact, the kind of charity that can be exercised by children is the very common kind of charity that is exercised by adults. In other words, we are taught that children should be introduced into a sphere of kindness towards those who are in need, toward the suffering. Therefore they should be encouraged to give to beggars, to hospitals, to any cause that will relieve suffering. They should be encouraged to do this because it represents charity, and heaven is present with the children in the representation.

I just want to quote something here from TCR 426: Many in the world entertain the opinion and belief that they have practiced works of charity when they have performed these external benefactions of giving to orphans, homes and churches, asylums and hospitals, etc. They are under the opinion that they have practiced works of charity by means whereby they are purified from sins, and that when they have done these things they are worthy of heaven as a reward; and yet they have not overcome the evils of hatred and revenge and fraud and all the general lusts of the flesh which they possess interiorly. But in that case it is said these good works are but painted pictures of angels in company with devils, or boxes made of lapis lazulu containing hydras. It is wholly otherwise when these benefactions are done by those who first shun the evils above mentioned. Nevertheless these benefactions are advantageous in many ways, especially giving to the poor and to beggars; for thereby boys and girls, servants and maids and in general the single-minded persons, are initiated into charity for these are its externals whereby such are trained in the practice of charity for these are its rudiments, and are then like unripe fruit.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 83 But with those who are afterwards perfected in right knowledges respecting charity and faith, these acts become like ripe fruit, and then they look upon those former words, which were done in simplicity of heart, merely as what they owed to others.

Those who are by nature compassionate, and do not make their natural compassion spiritual by putting it in practice in accordance with genuine charity, believe that charity consists in giving to every poor person, and relieving every one who is in want, without first inquiring whether the poor or needy person is good or bad; for they say that this is not necessary, since God regards only the aid and alms. But after death these are clearly distinguished and set apart from those who have done the beneficient works of charity from prudence; for those who have done them from that blind idea of charity, then do good to bad and good alike, and with the aid of what is done for them the wicked do evil and thereby injure the good. Such benefactors are partly to blame for the injury done to the good. For doing good to an evil-doer is like giving bread to a devil, which he turns into poison; far in the hands of the devil all bread is poison, or if it is not, he turns it into poison by using good deeds as allurements to evil. it is also like handing to an enemy a sword with which he may kill someone; or like giving the shepherds staff to a wolfish man to guide the sheep to pasture, who, after he has obtained it, drives them away from the pasture to a desert, and there slaughters them; or like giving public authority to a robber, who studies and watches for plunder only, according to the richness and abundance of which he dispenses the laws and executes judgments.

That is the point - that the charity of children is that blind kind of charity. Children do not have the knowledge, the judgment to make distinctions, but nonetheless the charity that charity that they can exercise is the means of introducing them to a genuine charity, which is to do good that will not only benefit the external needs of people, but at the same time will protect the good in society from the evil. It is by leading children in the sphere of adults to choose as far themselves that which represents the good and truth of heaven, that we can do all that lies in the power of men to secure the desired end, which is to choose in the right direction.

If we try to do more than this we injure the fundamental freedom of the child which is essential to his free choice as an adult. In other words, if we try to enforce our will upon children without any regard to their having the appearance that they choose from themselves, we do not train them in that kind of choice against their self-will which is essential to their regeneration. in regard to this let us notice particularly what is said in the Writings about it. In TCR 74 it says that the Lord in His leading of men touches but does not do to mans free will. Now if we reflect upon it, we will see that this is just the kind of leading we are expected to emulate in our training of children. The ideal for the educator is to touch the free will of children, touch it so as to give an impulse in the right direction, but never to do violence.

Now by doing violence to it, we dont mean obviously checking the child by punishment, etc. when he gets into these states that need to be broken. What we mean is the kind that breaks his will, breaks his spirit, that leads him always by fear and not by love.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 84 It is by touching the free will of children with a gentle pressure in the direction of what is highest and best., without destroying the appearance of free choice, that the will is trained in the right direction, and there is no other way. When we check by punishment we break a state, which is right that we should do, but we are not training the will.

Now this touching of the will in the right direction without breaking it can be done and must be done by the conjunction of four different things in the right proportion: the sphere of adults in the right direction, direct teaching, the habit of obedience, and punishment. Each one of these has its part to play. Each one in its right place and proportion has its part to play. And what does each one do? The surrounding sphere introduces the child into delights that are insinuated from others with whom he is associated. This puts him into a stream or current of delights which carried him along, and if he is in that stream of delights for some time and enjoys it, he then may seek to return to that stream later as of himself. It is when the child seeks to return to it that he becomes conscious of it and, as it were, chooses it for himself. That is the most powerful influence of all in touching the will.

The second thing is direct teaching. This presents a goal or an imaginative picture which invites the influx of heaven with its sphere. Without this, the other would be of no value because there would be nothing in the child that could call it back to him. So, if we have the child surrounded by a proper sphere of delights, and in that sphere we teach him directly, putting into his mind am image or picture which presents an influx from heaven, then we have put into his mind something he can remember when he is in an opposite sphere. And then he can as it were from himself seek to return to those delights because he has something in himself that can recall that influx. So these two things have to go together.

They are not, however, enough by themselves, unless there is induced a habit of obedience. A habit of obedience puts the mind and the body in an order that is representative of heavenly influx, and that habit of obedience is a thing that first prompts him to seek the return that I have spoken of. The reason for that will take a little too long to tell. But I must say one last thing about punishment. What does it do? It removes disorders and breaks a state that has been induced by influx from the childs heredity. It breaks a state that a child cannot break, and opens the way to a return of an orderly influx from heaven.

These four things in their right proportion are the means that have been provided whereby the will with children can gradually be trained. No one of them will do it by itself, but all four of them are needed.



Free Will
AC 9591              Free Will - to do what is good from the Will. (TCR 371:6.)

CL 437              Free Will from equilibrium between good and evil.

TCR 693              Every man, so long as he lives in the world, is kept in equilibrium and thus in Free Will. (TCR 475.)

TCR 743              God touches mans Free Will but never does violence to it. (Ideal of Education.)

TCR 475              Origin of Free Will in the spiritual world.

TCR 498              Free Will resides in the soul and thence inflows into the mind.

TCR 499              Free Will exists also with children.

Cor. 29:2              Free Will in childhood and in adult life.


AC 9034:3              By choice the internal man calls forth from the memory truths which agree with the good which inflows from the Lord through the soul. (AC 9035e.)




LIFE.                                                               CELESTIAL FAITH






TRUTH.                                                        MORAL TRUTH.


TAUGHT AS THE TRUTH                                   SPURIOUS FAITH.

                                   STATE OF IGNORANCE

                            NO FREE CHOICE



Section Three                     THE ULTIMATE AIMS OF EDUCATION
Chapter Two


The two faculties of liberty, or free choice, and rationality are so intimately associated that we cannot properly understand the one without also understanding the other. Therefore we cannot have a clear idea of free choice until we have some concept of what is meant by rationality. These are the two faculties that are characteristic of human beings make man to be man - liberty and rationality. These are the two great aims of mans education - that he may have liberty and rationality. Neither of them is possible until adult age, and so they are the ultimate goals toward which education is pointing. What is meant by them is differently understood in the New Church from any philosophic concept that you will find elsewhere, and it is most important that we have a clear idea of that difference.

Educational leaders of the present day regard free choice as the result of habit formation. It is the right reaction to a situation which has to be instilled by habit. That doesnt answer the purpose, as explained in the Writings, of free will. In fact, according to the definition given in the Writings, no action from habit is from free will. In order to be from free will it must be from rational judgment. The choice must be rational judgment, so you see how closely rationality and free will go together. Rationality also is differently understood in the educational world. The ordinary idea of rationality is the ability to reason logically and accurately from given premises. That is the ordinary concept of rationality today. The concept of rationality in the Writings is the ability to recognize truth and good and to see them in spiritual light. Unless we see this difference in definition and understand it, we will have no clear concept of the real difference in our educational objectives.

Now, something first about rationality. Rationality, like liberty, cannot be given in childhood or youth, and yet the appearance is the other way. I have had many raise the question with me as to whether it was really true that rationality could not be given until adult age. The appearance is very strongly the other way, especially to children and young people, because they dont see the difference between what is to them rationality, and what we have defined as rationality. The fact is that the ability to reason begins early in childhood. Indeed, it has its roots infancy. It is inherent in all human reactions, in all human mental life, and this ability to reason grows steadily as knowledges are acquired. The ability to reason increases with our knowledge and experience. As the memory is stored with the material of reasoning, the mind naturally and instinctively puts it together in ordered relation. That is what we call reasoning - to be able to put things together in our mind in ordered relation. That happens spontaneously - instinctively - because that ability to put things together in an ordered relation is inherent in love itself. Love just naturally does it. Love carries with it the ability to order knowledges in such a way as to achieve the end that is loved.

What we call reason and logic are not in anything that man has invented. We can study the natural way in which love puts things together, and if we then follow those laws, we can do it consciously and synthetically.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 88 But it is a long cry from the ability to put things together in this way by reason and logic to true rationality. As a matter of fact, children pass through a stage when they argue everything ad infinitum, ad nauseam, and any adult who sees a little further than the child does realize that their arguments - while they may be logical from their premises - are not rational, which requires something more of the definition of rationality than the ability to reason logically from a premise. Something more is indeed needed!

Now we are told about this appearance of rationality in the Writings - this ability to reason with children - and it is called there the first rational. It is a rational that is not based on any ability to discern and recognize what is true, but merely an ability to reason in favor of the things we want, the things we love, whether they are true or false. By that process of reasoning we can confirm what we want by a thousand reasons, and even convince ourselves it is true. That is why parents and teachers as often so unreasonable, you know, because they dont see how clearly it is true. When a child wants something, he can have a thousand reasons why he should have it and no reasons whatever why he should not. Now, of course, children not only reason that way, but they also, by careful observation, learn the reasonings of their teachers and their parents, and they can express those reasons sometimes very well, as if they were their own. And so the appearance is that they are becoming very rational. They can recite what they, have learned, what their parents have told them.

True, there is a way to reason, and these reasonings may be right and may lead to truths which are nonetheless opposed to the loves of the children, and they are quick to apply them to the other child. They can reason in the way their parents tell them, to tell the other child where he is wrong. But it doesnt apply when they want something. There is an exception there and it can always be found. Children who are most restive under parental guidance in these matters are also the most assertive when it comes to offering their services as a guide to others. There is all the difference in the world whether they are reasoning from what their parents have told them was right or true, or are reasoning from themselves - in their own minds - for then they are limited not only by a paucity of knowledge and of experience, but also are limited primarily by their loves. They can think only from the loves that are active with them, and in most cases those loves dont stray very far from home, so that in any given state a child uses his ability to reason primarily to confirm and excuse what at heart he wants, and he mistakes that for rationality.

Now genuine rationality is reasoning from spiritual light, from spiritual sight, from the actual vision of truth. We dont arrive at that truth as a result of reasoning. We see the truth and reason from it. We see the truth in the light of a love, and the one love that gives us a sure vision of a truth is a love of use. The love of use is the basis of all genuinely rational thinking. We dont mean by this the love of something we want to do or we want to accomplish; we dont call that use. We mean a love of genuinely desiring to be of service to others, forgetting ourselves. The basis of all truly rational thinking is the light that comes from this love. The fact that love automatically puts things together in an ordered sequence for the attainment of its end gives the appearance that there is rationality where there is not any love of use whatever.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 89 That, is why there is the appearance of rationality with animals, even with insects, bees, ants. All animals and all birds and all insects are wise in regard to their own life. This is because they are the form of a specific love which automatically puts together the things that came to them through the senses in such a way as to attain whatever is needed for their life.

Man in the same sense is a spiritual animal. Animals are created with purely natural love. Man is created with the capacity for receiving spiritual love, the love of God and love toward the neighbor. These loves also put together automatically the things that come from the senses in an ordered way to achieve their end, and when so put together they are rational. Rational means ratio, or in just relation to one another. Now when we are in love to the Lord or love to the neighbor, then our mind is enlightened by the same love as that which has created the whole universe as a means to receive the Lords love affirmatively into our minds. That love has created all things, and the very order which that love in proceeding and creating has induced upon all creation, is what we begin to see. That is the real relation - the true relation - that we then begin to see. That is what rationality is. Because all things were crested by the Divine Being for the sake of use, use to the eternal welfare of the human race, therefore we say a love of use, which is the same as love to the Lord, is that which puts together the things that come to us from without in truly rational order so that we see their real relation. Nothing else will do it.

In the beginning, when man was in an unperverted state, this happened spontaneously and children grew up in it. That doesnt mean that they were truly rational before they were adults. Even in the Golden Age they werent, for reasons we will point out presently, but it does mean that they had a natural tendency to see things in their true relation, so that as they grew, their minds were formed in order to be receptive of rationality. After the fall, when mans mind was perverted, this wasnt so. Little children are born in ignorance, and from ignorance into innocence, and as long as they are in innocence they do receive the sensations in order. Yet as they grow and their self-will comes up in opposition to innocence, the tendency in the mind is to put things together to get what they want, not from a love of use. Those are just the opposite ways.

The whole purpose of New Church education is to strengthen the original order into which the human mind is created, as against this hereditary tendency to think from self-will. Thus it is to lead children, as they grow, into the love of use, so that they may think from the love of use and thus came into true rationality. The love of use cannot be instilled with children before adult age. They can begin to learn what it is from what people teach them, but they cannot inwardly understand what it is except by maturation, a growth of the mind to a point where they can begin of themselves to assume individual responsibility. It is out of individual responsibility that an inner vision of use is born - not otherwise. Yet education during childhood and youth can do much to promote true rationality in adult age. It can do much to form the mind in such a way that it will more easily come into true rationality. Also education can do much to interfere with this, if it is the wrong kind of education.



And here is where we believe the great difference in the aim, end and purpose of education lies in the New Church. All educators profess to have as the aim of education to teach children to think, by which they mean to teach children to reason logically from given premises. The purpose and aim of the New Church is not merely to teach children to think. That is not enough. It has to teach children to think from the Lord, from the Word, from religion, and thus from love of use. Without this, logical thinking can be very mistaken, for it is from the Word and only from the Word that we can have this vision of truth from which to think. We must come to see and recognize that a thing is true, not because somebody has told us or not because the rest of the world believes it, but because we inwardly see that it is true.

The preparation to think from a love of use is effected in childhood by means of the love of learning. Learning is the business of childhood. It is the use of childhood, and it is by instilling an affection of learning, and appealing to these natural affections of learning in little children, that the mind is brought into that order which leads to a love of use in adult age. It is, therefore, as the child is introduced into his use - into the love of his use which is that of learning - that the rational r is formed. Then when the child becomes adult and ready to assume individual responsibility, he has the basis of true thinking because what has been cultivated with him is a love of truth - not a love of himself or what he wants, but a love of truth.

Now if this is seen, it can make a great difference in the way things are taught, in the way everything on the curriculum is taught. Things should be so taught as to inspire in the children the love of truth for the sake of use, which is to instill in them the seeds of true rationality. Indeed this gives rise to an entirely new rational, differing from the natural rational of use (which is thinking from the love of self) and which is directly opposed to it. This new rational is not really born until adult age is reached. It can come into being only when a child has reached a point where he assumes individual responsibility for his life. Then it begins to progress according as he judges from religious truths, from the Word, as to what he should or should not do, and thus it increases as his regeneration advances.

Now by a process of growth in which education assists, there is a successive ascent through degrees or steps to this genuine rational of adult age, and this ascending approach is what gives the appearance of rationality before that. The ascent is through the three degrees of the natural mind, called the sensual, the imaginative and the scientific rational. The sensual, the imaginative and the scientific stand in general for infancy, childhood and youth. It is with reference to these that the chart at the beginning of the chapter is intended as an illustration. Here we see - if we have an idea of what rationality is - how necessary is the opening of a genuine rational before there can be true freedom of choice.

We start at the bottom here of the ladder called the ladder of knowledge. That is a good place to start. We do not always know to start there. We start at the top. We actually start at the bottom, and not only in infancy but in anything we enter, upon a state of ignorance. There can be no freedom whatever in a state of ignorance. The possibility of freedom is according to our knowledge. Without knowledge there is no possibility, so that a little infant who has no knowledge is utterly helpless and utterly dependent upon those who care for him.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 91 But as he learns, as he advances in knowledge, he gains the ability to do things for himself which gives the appearance of freedom. This comes gradually according to what he learns, but his judgment is based entirely upon what he is told is true, so that the faith of infancy is the faith of whatever he is taught to be true. This is always a mistaken faith even when we teach him the truth as best we can, because his ability to understand is limited by his own little experience; and judging from that little experience, he understands what we tell him in a very primitive and imperfect way. The ideas he forms from it are frequently humorous, even ludicrous, and only gradually can they be changed by his own widening experience, thus correcting the mistakes in the way he understands what we teach him.

So even if we teach him the truth, every little child has at first a spurious faith. It is an idolatrous faith. It can not be otherwise, for by idolatry we mean mistaking; the outer appearance for the inner reality. The child mistakes the outer appearance of things for reality, and therefore he will associate what we tell him about God with external appearances of people, persons, things. Thus he will mistake the appearance for the reality, and so all along the line. So the only choice that a little infant has is between what he is told is true and what he as an infant can understand, and what he wants. This is his only choice. He has free choice between what he wants and what he is told, but which wins depends upon the state he is in at the time and how far he is under the influence of adults. It is not a matter of free choice, as you see. He is carried along on the current of his emotions and those emotions can to same extent be controlled by those around him.

Now as he grows out of infancy into childhood, he comes into the imaginative degree of the mind, and he can come to understand what external truth and good are. That is, what truth and good are on a natural plane, or in civil and moral life; what is right and wrong from the standpoint of what is fair. This is in a childish way, but nonetheless he can understand fair play, and then his choice is between the truth that he can understand and what he wants.

Finally, when he comes to youth and the scientific rational of the mind is opened, he can know what spiritual .truth is. He can understand it logically although he doesnt yet perceive its quality, and he can come into a belief in that truth - a belief, however, that is based largely on emotion. It is based on loyalty to those who have taught him. It is based on tradition. It is based on custom. Out of this can be formed a persuasive faith - a natural faith that still does not distinguish interiorly between what is spiritually true and false. In this way many, many people grow up and become strongly imbued with whatever religion they have been taught. They accept it. They have been taught in a certain way from certain premises that led by logical reasoning to certain deductions that they see, and therefore they are satisfied. They go along believing that faith, never realizing that it has all started from their accepting as children certain premises without examining them, and that all their thinking has come from this.

In youth they have the choice between this kind of belief and revolt against it from the basis of what they want.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 92 This is a youthful revolt against the traditions of what they have been taught, against accepted customs - a striking out for themselves with a desire to establish what they want, to be able to think from what they want. This is the only choice there is, unless they can see deeper than just those premises that they have accepted without examination. The higher level cannot be achieved until they have reached a certain age and assumed the responsibility for coming face to face with What do I believe? If they are willing to face that question frankly, not side-step it, not just go on being satisfied to take something they have not really seen but only because they have been told, then there may be true rationality. This is because, at the point where a person comes face to face with What do I believe?, he begins to examine it, not for the sake of establishing what he wants, or from his own self-love, or excusing what he is trying to do, but from a love of truth that will go back to the Word, to Divine Revelation, and test even the premises that he has been taught, test them to see whether or not in the light of Divine Revelation he can see their truth.

Heaven is rationality - true thinking. But hell is a madhouse - a spiritual instance asylum. That is the difference between them. All thinking from self-love leads to irrationality and insanity. The only true thinking is when we get out of ourselves and think from love to the Lord, from charity to the neighbor and love of use. That is the only true thinking there is. Now then, I dont say that youth who think logically from what they have been taught are insane by any manner of means. They can be taught to think according to true rational principles, but within their own minds this is not a genuine rational that is operating unless they see the truth before they confirm it. Now this is the point: the whole purpose of New Church education is to develop this kind of a rational. It is not to confirm our young people in what we teach them, or persuade them to grow up in our religion and just encourage them to accept that faith when they become adult, without further investigation. Our whole object is to teach them when they become adult to think from Divine Revelation, to go back to Divine Revelation as the origin, and to examine what the Lord has there revealed, and this for themselves. On this only is based true rationality.




What the Ration is. AC 268, 657, 978, 991, 1588, 1589, 1702, 1889, 1895, 2851, 6240; W 247.

The Two Rationals and the difference between them. AC 2196, 2520, 2657, 3493, 3765; W 23, 416; DP 154; TCR 564, 758; AE 569.

No Rational in childhood, but preparation is made for it then. AC 1495, 1893, 1901, 2504, 1944, 2280, 2557, 2577, 2625, 4156, 4618, 5126, 5497; DP 32; AC 10225; AE 6511, 1056; TCR 564.

What the Rational would be if there were no hereditary evil. AC 1902.

Whence comes the truth of the Rational? AC 1935, 1940, 3030.

Truly rational man is the same as the spiritual man. AC 3264.

The human begins in the interior of the Rational. AC 2106, 2194.

Rational compared to the world of spirits. HH 43.

Degrees of ascent in the natural world. (Preparation far the Rational) W 67, 237.

Every man can receive the Rational to the highest degree. W 258.

The Doctrine of the New Church appeals to rational things in natural Light. AR 544.

Rational light in the Word. AR 911e.



Section Three                     THE ULTIMATE AIMS OF EDUCATION
Chapter Three


We were speaking about the developing of the rational mind in childhood and how a real rationality is not possible. There is a gradual approach to it throughout the educational period, and education can do much toward the formation of the rational in adult age. On the other hand, conscience is something that does exist with children, although it is not an individual conscience, because that is not possible until adult age. It is important for us to have a clear idea of what is meant by conscience. In spite of all that is said and written about it, the ideas on the subject are very vague in the minds of many people, Somehow people have an idea that conscience is some kind of infallible dictate of God, as though God were to tell us from within what is right and what is wrong. This is not true.

Conscience, viewed in itself, we are told in the Writings, is a desire to act in accord with what is of on and faith, and a fear of acting contrary to what is of religion and faith. The nature of the conscience depends upon the quality of religion and faith. Conscience is distinguished in the Writings from perception, which is an inner perceiving of truth, an internal acknowledgment and vision of truth which gives insight and understanding. This is perception. Conscience is no such thing. It is an external acknowledgment that arises from the fact that we have been taught a thing is Divine or is from God or is according to religion, and thus is considered holy. Whatever we have been taught is holy and Divine, that becomes a matter of conscience with us and so produces an affirmative attitude toward it, together with a fear of transgressing it. Because it doesnt require a spiritual insight into truth, conscience can exist with children. We have just pointed out that they cannot as yet have a spiritual insight into truth, but they can have a conscience and they must have one. As a matter of fact, the Writings point out very clearly that unless conscience is developed in childhood and youth it is not possible in adult age.

If a man is to choose in the right direction from rational judgment when he is grown up, the use of conscience must be exercised in childhood. With children, conscience arises from associating what is Divine and holy and of religion with external things. They associate it with objects that are called-holy, with gestures and with customs, rituals, and so on. That is the basis and foundation of conscience - certain external things that are called holy. This is the foundation of what we know as religious scruples, and these scruples can be either true or false.

There is nothing inherently true just because a thing has been associated with what is holy in the mind of the child. And so we find that there can be conscience with people who have very primitive forms of religion, who make things holy which could be entirely abhorrent to Christian modes of thought, for instance, but nevertheless are done from conscience. Every religion develops its own conscience and a conscience is according to whatever may be taught by the religion. It is no more true than the religion itself. It produces a moral standard and principle, a moral code, and associates it with religion, but this doesnt guarantee by any manner or means that that moral code is in accord with the Divine Law.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 95 It may not be. In many cases it is not.

The difficulty then before us, if we think about it, is this if conscience is just according to whatever a child is taught from religion to be holy, then if we develop what we think to be of conscience with children, how can we avoid merely training them in our own set of traditions, our own set of external ideas of what is right and wrong? What makes the difference between the kind of training that we should seek in raising our children, as we say, in the church, and that which is done by every other religion in the world - instilling a conscience with their children in accord with what they teach to be true.

This is very important for us to realize - that an ideal of New Church education is to avoid just that thing, to avoid merely training our children to a conscience with reference to external things and particular modes of doing things, because they have been told these are New Church, these are holy, these are according to our religion. Our objective goes beyond that. It looks toward educating children so that they will acquire a conscience of spiritual truth. That is, they will consider that to be of religion, that to be holy, and so form their conscience from that which they themselves come to see is true from Revelation. Not from tradition, not from some custom that has been established, but what they see to be taught by the Lord in His Word. That is what we would call a conscience of spiritual truth, rather than of external act. This kind of conscience will not bind them to some external form that may be changed, but will bind them to a rational understanding of the Word. That is what we believe to be the essence of true conscience.

Now we say this is the ideal. It is not the easiest thing to accomplish, because in spite of that ideal, we find that, so long as we are dealing with children and young people, they are incapable of a rational understanding of spiritual truth. If they are taught any conscience at all, it must be associated with external things, things that are done, things that are said, customs, modes of life, things they can see that are concrete. If it is not associated with these, it has no basis in their minds, because as yet what we call a rational understanding of truth is purely abstract and theoretical to them. It means nothing. Children are swayed by delights, and the delights of childhood are hereditary and innate. These come along by growth and maturation, with all children relatively the same. They are based upon sensations of pleasures, first of sensation and then of imagination, and there is an ascent of the delights, step by step. As a child grows his delights change, and the transition from one to the other is always by means of alternations, sometimes in the higher delights, and sometimes in the lower ones. But gradually the lower ones grow less and the higher ones grow greater, until the lower ones practically pass away and he comes into the higher. That is the law of growth.

So long as a child is at that stage of his development where certain delights are normal to him, these delights are innocent and useful. They are the means by which his mind grows, but when he has passed beyond that stage, and has been introduced into higher delights, at once there is a conflict between these higher delights and the former ones. In the beginning the higher delights are hard and the former ones are easy.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 96 So there is a struggle, an effort, to attain the higher, and a tendency to remain in the lower ones. This is what is the basis of conscience with children the real essential basis of conscience with children - this struggle between the delights that are easy for them, and those that are a little in advance and more difficult. The whole possibility of a childs growth and development depends upon his undergoing that struggle, and choosing the higher delights in preference to the lower.

Now just transfer that to spiritual things and you will see that it is the whole problem of regeneration. Our whole question of conscience in spiritual things is a struggle between higher delights that we have came to know about from Revelation, and the lower delights that have their origin in the proprium. When children are taught what is right - that is, what their parents and teachers think is right - and this rightness is associated with religion, with the Word, with the Commandments of God, then there is provided for the children what we call an ideal, which is nothing but a mental picture of what is a higher delight. If this is done in a sphere of delight and affirmation on the part of children, there is born a desire to achieve this ideal, to return to this higher delight, and when it is violated there is a struggle, there is mental suffering. That is the basis of conscience with children.

Now the point at which this conscience can operate depends upon the stage of the childs mental development. We cannot expect a child to formulate ideals that are beyond him, to picture things that are too abstract for his mental growth, or are outside of the possibility of his actual experience. We cannot expect him to feel delights that he has not grown up to. He doesnt as yet have the basis in his mind for fulfilling them. It is a mistake, therefore to expect a conscience of a child that is beyond his years, and it is of extreme importance that we understand at any stage, we are teaching, where that point is that conscience really does take hold - what is the kind of conscience we are dealing with.

Conscience always exists on the plane of a childs actual life, and this is in accord with his mental age and development. It begins on the sensual plane, which is purely the delights of the senses with very little children, and then it ascends to the plane of the imagination with older children, and finally to the plane of reason with youths. We say that, and we think we have the whole story, but we have to know something about the progressions through each of these planes - through the beginning of the sensual up to the beginning of the imaginative plane and from the beginning of that up to the beginning of the rational plane, for it is not all alike. Children change from month to month, and year to year, and every advance means a change in the plane, or where their conscience operates. Educators must study to know where this plane of conscience is at every age, and must utilize the delights that are proper to that age, seeking to lead the child from those delights to the ones that are next higher - not those that are away off somewhere - but to those that are next higher, for the ascent must be step by step, and not faster than that. The whole study of growth of the mind is an endeavor to get light from Divine Revelation that will give us some clearer idea of what these steps are.



All educational advancement is an ascent from a lower delight to a higher one, which involves a casting aside of former pleasures that seemed like everything to us, in order to enjoy deeper pleasures that we have begun to feel on a more interior plane of the mind. This always involves a struggle, a vacillation, a stage of alternation. We cans into a higher delight by first sensing that delight, falling back to the previous one, and struggling to return to the higher, and with each return strengthening it in relation to the former one. For instance, we are new under the influence of our former pleasures and delights, and again we long for the new ones that we have sensed and want to return to them. Gradually the new ones will be more and more frequently sought, will be held on to with greater tenacity, will have relatively greater power over the old ones, and the older ones will gradually lose their appeal.

Just study children at different ages, and notice how their delights change. The things they enjoy, the things they love, change from year to year. You might find a child at any age that for a time will be interested in things of a lower age, but such interests are not normal; they are not the things he wants to remain in. me struggle between two delights that appear to be opposite is the essence of human life. The fact that we can choose between those two delights and make one ours and reject the other is the distinguishing characteristic of the human, and through that struggle we develop strength of character. Gradually if we make the higher choice and abide by it, the former delight will die and be supplanted or succeeded by another.

This is the whole story of life that is told in the Word in the Old Testament. The whole story of the Old Testament with its successive generations - Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all those that followed throughout the whole history of Israel - each one represents a successive advance into a new delight. Notice the fact that they are so interwoven - that the one declines before the other has ended, and each grows just as a child is born and grows up while his father and mother are living, and only in the process of time do the parents die and pass away, and the new generation takes their place, and then the same thing happens again. That is a perfect picture of what happens in the mind in its growth. Now the older generation is the leading character of the story, and then again the younger generation becomes the leading character, until finally by alternations the new generation takes precedence, and at last becomes the sole representative. If that process isnt going on, then the child doesnt grow. That is what we mean by mental growth. Of course, it is possible and actually a fact in many cases, that that doesnt take place. Where there is mental retardation and mental growth is arrested at some point, then there is a remaining in the delights that belong to a much younger age, and no advance beyond them.

Now the point is that all that we call conscience with children is based on this struggle from a lower to a higher plane. Theirs is necessarily a natural conscience, for it is a question of some higher natural delight in preference to some lower natural delight. Children are in spiritual delights but they dont know it. They feel the delights of spiritual things by influx from the other world, but they always associate these with natural objects, and identify them with natural things. They are not able as yet to distinguish, and so their concept of these delights is always a natural one.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 98 Our problem is to lead them to a spiritual conscience, lead them step by step, ascending the ladder of understanding and learning, so that at last they may be able to have a choice between what is truly spiritual, and what is natural; no longer between what is a higher and lower natural, but between what is natural and what is truly spiritual.

That is the whole challenge of our education, and the outcome depends upon how they are led to the Word, to Divine Revelation. The source of all spiritual Light is the Word of God. The only place from which anyone can get truly spiritual insight is from Divine Revelation, and so if we are to develop a spiritual conscience as the end product of our education, we must teach these external things that become of conscience with children. We must so teach them that they will lead the children inevitably back and back at last to the Word itself, to a rational understanding of the Word as the only basis of their conscience. Now that is done really by the Lord, not by ourselves. We cant do it, but it is done so far as the things we teach them to be of conscience are based on a rational under standing of the Word. They have in them the possibility of being confirmed, being seen clearly in the light of Revelation itself. So our purpose and object should be always to be reviewing and recasting our own ideas of what are the external things that should be associated with conscience with our children; adjust them to what we, ourselves, rationally see from the Writings to be true.

If the things that children associate with religion and conscience are truly representative of spiritual things, then they become a basis for a spiritual conscience in adult age. And the more so by far if, in the childrens affection for them, they are surrounded by the sphere of adults who love the spiritual thing - not the external act - but love the spiritual thing as; they see it, and love the external thing purely because it serves that spiritual truth. This means that the delight of that love of spiritual truth is insinuated with the children, together with their love of the external thing, because they are surrounded by it.

All conscience of children is in this way derived from others. It is not their own. Children have no conscience of their own, not at all. It is all based on what they have learned, what they have been taught is true or false, good or evil. Their interpretation or understanding of it depends upon the spheres of those with whom they are associated. As we pointed out in connection with childrens rationality, we might teach them what is right and wrong and have them clearly understand it in our spheres, but when they get out of these spheres and get in among associates who are in purely external delights and pleasures, it is very easy to find a way out, to explain away the things they know are true, so that they may run contrary to it. And they will still say that what they think at the moment is of their conscience. When they get back to the sphere of older people, then that conscience seem; a little different. But it is only through the spheres of grown-up people with whom children are associated that they can be introduced into higher delights, became aware of higher things that they must learn to choose.

For this reason the associations of children are of extreme importance. In fact, that is true of adults too, although adults can control their spiritual associations to a considerable extent, regardless of their natural associations, but children cannot.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 99 Adults can maintain a state and conviction and determination that is the result of influx from the other world in the face of strong spheres that are apposite to their surroundings. Children have not yet that ability. They are carried away by the strong currents of emotions that surround them. Only gradually, step by step, do they acquire self-control and the ability to maintain something that they have been taught is true and right in the face of opposition, this is gradual because they are continually reverting into their earlier states, earlier delights, and having to struggle out of them to maintain a higher delight is hard. One that is already established is easy, and the natural tendency is to follow the road of least resistance and to find our delights along the path that is easiest. So it is with children, and only gradually, by steps and stages, can they be brought to feel higher delights to the point where at last they have come into the love of spiritual truth.

We have said that conscience is not an individual insight as to what is true or what is not true. Conscience, as we pointed out, is a desire, or a willingness, to be led by the Lord. Therefore it is a sense of loyalty to whatever we have been taught is the Divine Will or the Divine Law, and this without being able to distinguish for ourselves with any assurance, whether what we have been taught is the Divine Law or not. For that reason conscience with children is formed according to whatever religious teaching they receive, and it varies altogether according to the nature of that religious teaching. If there is nothing else than this, that is, training and education to conform to whatever they are taught from religion to be true; then it is impossible to avoid a merely traditional faith. Children grow up to accept the religion of their fathers, to accept it uncritically, passively, and without individual insight. Now this is most important to understand if we are to see what is the difference in the teaching of the New Church, how the end and aim of the teaching of the New Church differs from other religious teachings. We have as our end and purpose to avoid a traditional faith, and to lead children at adult age to a true conscience based not on tradition but on insight. So now we would ask ourselves how is this to be done. How are we to avoid a traditional faith and establish a true conscience?

There are three general means to this end, and these are the things that should be kept in mind and stressed as of supreme importance in all future education. The first is this: that children while they are taught and required to conform to certain external forms that are in accord with our concept of religion, yet should be led to think and to choose as if from themselves, rather than merely to follow blindly what they have been taught. Conscience is the basis of free choice. So long as it is merely based on what we have been told to believe, it is not a free choice but a choice imposed upon us by others, and this in the beginning cannot be avoided because we have not the ability to choose from ourselves. We must have our choices imposed upon us by those who are caring far us, by the environment in which we are placed, by the rules and regulations that govern our life which are all determined by adults around us. That is necessary, but the end is that we shall not rest satisfied when we grow older merely to accept this, but shall examine for ourselves what is true and not true, and shall not be satisfied until we have made a choice based on our own rational judgment.



In this matter we have a different point of view from an older education, and also from the modern progressive education. We differ from both of them in our attitude regarding it. The older education had a tendency to be repressive, to insist upon external conformity to a pattern that was imposed by society, and therefore to make as its ideal the child who was willing to conform without question, without resistance. The modern progressive idea is just the opposite of this. It represents a revolt from the older, and it stresses the idea of the child choosing for himself, and instills something of a doubt as to the wisdom of what his parents and teachers and the older generation have established. It appeals to him to be the judge as to whether the ways of the world as he finds them are right or not. Even while he is a child he is asked to judge whether they are right or not. So the idea that he can judge and can find out what is wrong with things and set them straight is insinuated in that way while the little child is still in the stage where he really has no possible basis of judgment for himself.

We would avoid both of these extremes. In order to achieve this end, modern progressive educators minimize direct teaching. They discourage authoritative teaching. They discourage any form of compulsion, and they emphasize self-expression on the part of a child, self-thinking on the part of a child, without any guidance by direct teaching of adults. Now here is where we would differ from that. We believe that children must be taught. They must be taught directly. They must be taught what is true categorically and they must receive that teaching with authority; that is, they must be led by command and in this respect there must be an element of compulsion to establish habits that are of order, habits both of act and of thought. All this must be done, and yet we would avoid the mistake of the early education against which the progressive movement has revolted. We must avoid the mistake of supposing that this is an end in itself - to get the child by some external compulsion to conform. We must realize that this direct teaching, this authority and guidance, are only helps that are necessary for the child until he is able to make judgments for himself. They are only helps, and the end in view is that the child, in the measure that he develops and is able to do so, should choose as if for himself, in the sphere of adults. Also that he should choose the higher delights as against the lower delights. Unless a child has opportunity to do that, he is not being trained to make individual choices when he grows up, for it is this apparent choice, this appearance of choosing for himself while he is a child, that lays the foundation for a rational choice in adult age. In this respect we should remember that it is a natural human tendency to do too much for children.

I think if there is any valid criticism of our own education it lies in that direction. Our tendency is to do too much for children. There are two reasons for that. One is that it is easier to do it for the child than to have patience with him while he learns to do it for himself. That is the first reason: it is easier for us. But it is also true that we are led to do too much for our children from a natural love of our children. That is love that centers in self. We so want them to be perfect. We so want them to shine in the eyes of others, for after all they are part of ourselves and because of that we are not willing for them to take their chances with the rest of the world, and learn by experiences and mistakes. We want to get in ahead and see that they dont make mistakes. That is human nature, but it is not good education.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 101 I think that if we are to develop out of a childish conscience a genuine conscience in adult age, we have to guard ourselves against this, and allow the children to face their own little problem. Help them, but dont take away the necessity of their making choices for the right, as if of themselves. Give them the foundation to do it by direct teaching of what is right, but then lead them within our sphere to what appears to them to be their own choice. That leads to the ideal. I am not so gullible as to suppose that the achievement of the ideal is an easy thing to carry out, but it is an ideal toward which to strive in our education, and it is a different ideal from that which we find in the educational philosophy of the world around us. Let us make no mistake about that. Now then, this is the first way in which we might help to avoid establishing a merely traditional faith.

The second way is this, and it is of extreme importance. Our direct teaching, our authoritative teaching, must be associated with the Word and with religion. This is in order that the childs choice, even as a child, will be a choice of what the child thinks the Lord wills, the Lord teaches. While we must interpret the Divine Law to children and our interpretations of it are human and open to correction in the future; yet the children must look upon our teaching as of Divine origin. Things are true because the Lord has said so. A thing is right because the Lord has willed it. And lets remember that with little children in the beginning, especially, the parent stands in the place of the Lord, and is the only vital representative of the Lord to the child. In other words, we cannot do away with that. We cannot divorce the child from the idea that when the parent speaks, it is from the same authority as when the Lord speaks - that it is from the Lord.

Here, again, is what is very different from the modern educational ideas. It is the difference between a merely ethical and moral teaching and a teaching truly religious - merely ethical and moral teaching that comes to a child only with the authority of tradition, of what society has established, of what is good for the preservation of society in this world, of what men have thought out as being the best thing for society - all that. That is not enough to attain a conscience in adult age! The childs choice will always be on the plane of what is purely ethical and moral. That is perfectly true. The child can only think on the plane of what is ethical and moral, but he must be taught that it is from the Lord, from the Word. This is the quality of religious teaching in childhood; it is moral truth and ethical precepts to which have been given Divine sanction. That is the case. We give Divine sanction to moral truth and ethical precepts with children. We must do so. Indeed, it is of extreme importance that we should do so, for it makes a profound difference in the effect on the child.

In this connection, note what is said in the Writings about the Ten Commandments with the Jews and with others. The Ten Commandments did not originate on Mount Sinai. The Ten Commandments were known in very ancient times, were known to all ancient peoples as laws expected to be followed. But when they were promulgated from Mount Sinai, they became to the Jews the foundation of religious life; whereas with all others they were merely the foundation of national civil and moral life. It was because they were acknowledged as the laws of God, that they should become the foundation of religious life.



Now let us return again to the great danger that lies in this. We teach ethical and moral precepts that are human interpretations and these change from age to age; they are different with different nationalities and different peoples throughout the world. We teach these things, ascribing to them Divine sanction. Here is the danger: that children will grow up and mistake the truth for these external forms, and associate particular ecclesiastical customs and family traditions and local habits of life, with the Divine Law, and therefore core to have a false conscience. This happens all the time.

Consider the traditions of the Jews, their meticulous laws about sacrifices and about the way in which they should observe the Law of Moses. Over the centuries, thousands of restrictions were placed on the Jewish people by the interpreters of the Jewish law until it became a burden grievous to be borne, as the Lord pointed out, and all those accumulations of human tradition the Lord swept aside. He transgressed them time and again. He tried to show that those were not the Law of God.

What happened to the Jewish people happened just as much with the Christian people. Many, many human interpretations have been gathered about the Gospels, added to them and identified with them as the result of years of custom. And so we have the blue laws, for instance, laws of what is right and wrong to do on Sunday. These were sanctioned by the civil law because it was supposed they were of Divine origin. And then there has been almost universal sectarian teaching about the sin of card playing, theaters, dancing and many such external acts, of which there is no mention made in the Scriptures. But these came to be regarded as Divine commands, just in the same way as the Jewish accumulations came in.

Now we in the New Church are subject to the same thing exactly. Sometimes we may be puzzled to know how we can teach our children that the doing of certain things is of Divine sanction, that they belong to our religion, that they are what we call New Church, and at the same time to avoid the gradual building up of these applications of our Revelation in such a way that they at last became a false conscience imposed upon the Church by men. In this respect we do have an advantage over the Jewish and Christian sects, in that we have the teachings of the Writings differentiating between these external acts and the religion itself. Moral and civil and ethical acts, we are told in the Writings, correspond to spiritual laws. They are not spiritual laws. They correspond to spiritual laws. They have by means of that correspondence a spiritual content. That spiritual content is the real law of God, and if they have that spiritual content we want them. But if they become merely moral and ethical acts without spiritual insight, spiritual understanding and affection, then they no longer correspond. Then they are no longer the basis of religion.

Children should be taught as they grow older - increasingly, progressively, as they grow older - that we are requiring of them, not to abide by the outward form, but to seek the spiritual essence within to which that form corresponds. We must teach them this is the important thing in order that they may not become slaves to form, and this in spite of the fact that as children they cannot see it as a spiritual thing.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 103 They only know it is so; they only see the outward form. So we have to teach them to conform to it. But also teach them as they grow older to look deeper, not to be satisfied with doing the things they have been told are right, but insist on seeing why they are right and therefore why they should be done. They must come to see that for themselves.

A childs conscience is always a spurious one because children necessarily mistake the form for the essence. They see the form but not the essence. However, if the forms that we teach them are representative, if the forms do have a basis of spiritual content that we see, that we feel, then they can lead the children to a true conscience when they grow up, for when they come to examine why for themselves, they will find a legitimate reason. They will find in Revelation the spiritual content, and while, as they find it, conditions may have changed and that particular way of doing it may not be any longer the best, yet they can find the inner reason for it, and knowing that inner reason, they can then adopt whatever new form will contain that essence in their own generation. And when they do that they have a real conscience, a real religion based on insight and not on tradition. This means that as the Church advances from generation to generation, those things that tend to accumulate as dead ferns, that are no longer correspondential and representative of the real spirit of the Church, can be removed. Thus the essence and spirit of the inner life of the Church can be renewed.

Now this will not happen unless we consciously lead our children as they grow up to seek that kind of on and that kind of conscience. This idea should be at the very center of our thought in all our education: how can we lead children to look to the essence when they get older and not merely cling to the form? You know, it is the most difficult thing in the world for us to do. In every generation we get enamored of certain forms; we identify these forms with our religion and we are very reluctant to see them changed. We think the heavens will fall and the earth will stop turning around if they are. Now in same cases those forms may be extremely important, may even be essential. But we have to be very sure that we are not clinging to them because of an effect that was established a long time ago when we were children. If we do hold to them, we must have real rational reasons based upon an understanding of our own day and time.

This is something that we need to take careful thought about, not only for our children but for ourselves. This is what is involved in the whole idea of the Academy and its principles - that we shall not have any doctrines established in the Church by any council or by any individual that is to be binding on the conscience of men. Every such doctrine is a human interpretation, and in this we include the principles of the Academy. Every doctrine of that sort is a human interpretation and as such it is subject to error of judgment. The whole position of the Academy is that our end is to lead people back of any human interpretation, to the Divine Revelation itself, so that you hear what the Lord says and thus judge from what the Lord says as to what is true. It is also the basis of that teaching that was so fully accepted in the Academy that we should be firm in internals but yielding in externals. That is, that the focus of our education should not be upon the external farm. It must be upon the internal essence, and we must be willing that the external forms shall change (with the changing times,) so long as the internal essence is retained.



Now here the need for culture becomes apparent. Every generation of young people that comes along is impatient for change. They dont want to follow a tradition of their leaders. They want to be very sure that they are not doing so, and therefore they are impatient to sweep away some of the external forms, and it is not hard far them to do so without retaining the internal essence. They can easily sweep away the essence along with the form, if the only thing they see is the form and not the essence. Therefore, it is extremely important that each generation shall be taught the importance of not making such changes out of external impatience, or out of similar desire to break away from established tradition, but to make such changes only when the internal reason for, a change is clearly seen. Make changes from the Writings, from a perception of truth in the Writings, and not from the whims of self-importance. So you see how delicately the future of the Church is balanced.

It is so easy for us to make mistakes in both these directions. How important it is that the training of our children shall arm them against these errors! Every generation comes to think at a certain stage of its development that the older generation is set in its ways, has lost its understanding of human nature, has become names and decayed, and that it needs to be radically changed. Every generation feels that way. It is human nature. It is only when the younger generation begins to be the older generation that they wonder about that.

However, we need to have a very clear idea of what is meant by narrowness and by real breadth of mind. We have to realize that breadth of mind doesnt come from the number of things that we know, or are judging from. It doesnt arise from the fact that we have had a lot of new experiences, and that things have been invented since our fathers were children, and that we have come to know them in a way they didnt. We have radio, movies, television, magic eyes and various such things. We will change the whole state of the world, and we can judge very differently from the way our fathers did because they didnt know those things, and therefore they are thinking from too narrow a range of knowledge. That is the idea, but: it is not a fact. A real breadth of vision is not derived from the number of experiences, but from the depth of insight from which we interpret those experiences. We have to ascend the mountain - the mountain of internal understanding and perception - and then look out over the surrounding country and judge it from within, if we are going to be really broad. It is difficult for the younger generation to do that, unless they ascend. We have to inspire them with the ideal of ascending that mountain in order to make their judgments.




Conscience distastes not what is Truth, but that the Word is Truth. (AC 393, 895, 182:2).

Conscience and perception. (AC 597, 1442, 1919, 2144, 7233, 7935.)

How conscience is given the spiritual. (AC 765, 875, 2063, 3957



Spiritual. man must be ruled by conscience. New will. (AC 918, 977, 1935, 2632e.)

Kinds of conscience. (AC 1022, 1032, 1033, 1043, 1076, 1077, 2053.)

Proprium acquired through freedom essential to conscience. (AC 1937, 1947.)

Conscience formed in childhood by education. (AC 2831, 7935; SD 3445; AE 376.)

       Not sufficient for adult life. (AC 3388.)

       Planes of conscience. (AC 4167, 6207; D. Min. 4545.)

       Conscience not from hereditary good. (AC 6208.)

       HD 130-138. General article.

       Angelic definition of conscience. (TCR 666.)



Section Three              THE ULTIMATE AIMS OF EDUCATION
Chapter Four

We have been speaking of those objectives of education which can be obtained only at the end of the educational period when adult age has been reached, and among those objectives is what we call character. There is quite a difference of view among educational philosophers as to what character is. We also have a view about what character is and what the objective of education is toward which we should strive. Our concept of character differs from that of the educational world in its stress upon the spiritual side of life, particularly mans immortality. There is no development of character in the sense in which we would mean it without spiritual temptation, so we speak of character under the terms of what spiritual temptation is and what it does for us.

Many people from time to time have asked me very anxiously how we interest in knowing what a spiritual temptation. They seem to have a morbid interest in knowing what a spiritual temptation is. As a matter of fact we cannot know because it is a very illusive thing of human consciousness where it is very difficult for us to probe. We are quite aware of our surface emotions and desires and intentions, but is far are difficult for us to analyze our deepest motives, and it is on the plane of those deepest motives that spiritual temptation takes place. If we could be sure of what our inmost motives are, then we could know of these temptations, but if we ask ourselves that question frankly we must admit that we dont know a great deal about it. We frequently discover afterwards that our motives were not just what we were convinced they were at the moment, and yet we had no indication of it until calm reflection removed the clouds of emotion from which we were thinking at the time. In this, grown-up people are no different from young people. We do a great deal of thinking from emotion and only realize it afterwards. The difference is that at adult age we have the power, at least afterward, to analyze our emotions and judge apart from them.

Spiritual temptation is an assault upon a spiritual love, and it is difficult for us to isolate our spiritual loves. They are so easily confused with natural loves. We may say that a spiritual temptation arises when we feel that something of our religion, something of our faith, is injured or in danger. We must defend it. That is not so difficult to determine. An attack on some doctrine of the Church that we believe in, an attack on some established ritual or form of religion that we believe in, arouses us, and we might say that is a spiritual temptation. But whether it is or not goes a good deal deeper than that. We can easily fly to the defense of something of our Church as much to defend ourselves, our own reputation, our own name among others, as to defend the truth itself, and it is pretty hard for us to tell the difference. As a matter of fact, spiritual temptations are almost always associated with natural temptations. They go together - the one within the other, the inner spirit within the external form - so that our defense of something of religion that we can define and definitely determine is qualified by the spirit within that defense. Certainly there is a great deal of defense of things in the name of religion that is not spiritual at all, and that can go to just the opposite extreme of being extremely selfish and worldly, and yet all in the name of religion. So just the fact that we are having temptation about something of our religion or faith is not in itself proof that we are undergoing a spiritual temptation.



This is clear, however: there must be a knowledge of spiritual truth as a prerequisite to any spiritual temptation. We can hardly be tempted with reference to something of which we know nothing, and so with Gentile peoples who have no knowledge of the Word or Divine Revelation, spiritual temptation cannot be predicated. But knowledge alone is not enough. There are many people who have a knowledge of the Word, a knowledge of spiritual truth, who still do not have spiritual temptation. In addition to knowledge there must be understanding and affection, for as we said, spiritual temptation is an assault upon a spiritual love, and the quality of the temptation is determined by the quality of the love. In analyzing this, we see that children, while they may know about spiritual things, and may be taught the Word and the doctrine of the Church, are still incapable of spiritual temptation because they do not as yet spiritually understand.

Nevertheless, children have temptations that are the outward representation of spiritual temptations and that are essential as a preparation for them, and unless we are exact in our definition, we can easily confuse such temptations as children may have with spiritual temptations themselves. Children do not have truly spiritual motives, and yet they can have all the external appearance of them, fighting for all the things they have been taught to believe in, and by means of these natural temptations children develop what we call character. The conflict is always between two loves - a higher love and a lower love. This is the essence of temptation: a struggle between two loves, a higher love and a lower love, a higher delight and a lower delight. And we have seen, with reference to children, that the whole process of growth is a building up from lower delights to higher delights, and there is always a struggle between those delights. However, in the case of children, both those delights are natural, whereas in adult age the essential struggle of regeneration is between a natural delight and a spiritual one.

This is what forms character. It is formed by effort, perseverance, struggle against odds, the stoical bearing of suffering, the refusing to yield to discouragement or doubt. All these elements are present throughout childhood, from infancy to adult age, and childrens growth involves them. As we have seen, the perpetual struggle in childhood is between the things that are familiar and easy and those new things to which the child is just awakening. These are higher delights that appear hard, and yet which must be mastered if he is to advance. In all this is the essence of what we call character.

Could you tell me what character is? Have you any idea of the definition of it? How would this sound? Character is a love of what is just and fair and honest, upright, true and good; a love of that more than of self. Where there is a love of what is right, just and fair, true and good, more than of self, then that love prompts one to sacrifice his own desires in order to protect and sustain that right. The opposite of this would be what we can call self-indulgence. Doesnt that express the essence of what is in general meant by character.



Well, with little children, there can be all the elements of this idea as between two natural loves - an idea of what is just and right, fair and true and good which is purely a natural idea, and yet they love it and will defend it. And you know, it is curious and interesting to note how mixed up that can be with very wrong ideas. I was just reading about a little girl in the slums of London - Dock district of London - and the way she reacted to the German blitzkrieg; a little girl about eight years old. She had been taught that the cops were her natural enemies and that anything you could take without being caught was to your credit if you got away with it. It described how she took advantage of the burning buildings and the confusion at the time of the raid to gather in quite a store of valuables that she had had a covetous eye upon for a long time. The trouble was she was caught and she got a licking for being caught. Obviously her standards of morality werent very high. But this same little girl in the midst of all this business got caught in a building that was bombed, and she was pinned under the debris. With her was a little bay who was working with her, who was her aider and abettor, and they also had a little baby with them that they had to take care of. And so it describes the bravery, the ability to stand pain without flinching and the utter selflessness of this little girl in wanting to see that that little boy and baby were safe, regardless of self. So there you see the strange combination between what we would consider anything but the sign of character and what would be recognized at once as a sign of character in such a little girl. And that is typical.

We see it all the time. We see it in our own children, not perhaps in quite as extreme a way but we see it nonetheless, and it just shows us that this matter of character is deeper than we ordinarily suppose, and we cant put a tag on it and say, There you are. Thats it! so easily. Certainly it is true that that little girl, while her standard of morality was entirely too low to be what society recognizes as character, yet it was the best she knew. There was nothing wrong in it from her standpoint because she had been taught it was all right to get ahead of the cops if you could. She didnt believe in anything else than that, and therefore to judge her on the basis of what she did in comparison with those that had been taught differ entry is not a fair comparison, and it doesnt give us a true picture. But character comes, as we say, from a love of what we believe to be just and right and fair and honest, and the willingness to sacrifice everything of ourselves to protect what we believe to be right.

Children in their growth act from a point where they believe one thing to be right to a point where they learn for the first time that something else is right, and that now they must distinguish between what they have been doing and what they ought to do. That is what we call a higher delight - to discover and see something that is right on a higher plane. Then their struggle comes in attempting to attain to that rather than remain in what is easy far them, in what has already been established. And so it is true that what is right for an infant is not right for a child, and what is right for a child is not right for a youth. What is right for each is the best that they can know and understand, and what they can know and understand is less than what they can know and understand at a later age. And in this respect a child is capable now of discovering what is right and of coming to know from conscience what he ought to do.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 110 This is the internal of a childs life, whereas the state through which he has just been passing and which he took for granted becomes the external of his life. And this struggle throughout childhood is the basis for a spiritual conscience at adult age. There is a struggle between these two - the external of the child and his internal. His character depends upon his will and determination to overcome these natural childish temptations, and by this we say his character is formed.

Now there are three reasons by which we can help children in this struggle. Essentially it is a struggle that the child himself must make. We cannot make it for him but we can help him. The first of the means is instruction. We can give him instruction to help him to see what is a higher truth, a higher right, that still is within his grasp. Secondly, we can help him by compulsion to abide by what he has been taught is right, And thirdly, we can help him by putting him in a situation where he has the opportunity to abide by that which he knows to be right as of himself. And this latter is the most important. The other two are necessary, for without them the child would never come to a point where he could choose as of himself. They are necessary but they are only the means, and the end is that the child shall be led to make that choice as of himself. We have seen that in connection with conscience. The same thing applies here for it is the same thing operating. The ideal is self-compulsion. Self-compulsion in the true sense is possible only in adult age, but self-compulsion under the inspiration, the unrealized influence of adults, is possible in childhood, and this is what prepares for spiritual temptation in adult age.

Everything about our educational processes, methods and modes should be directed to stimulating this self-compulsion. And here is where a great deal of judgment is needed, for if we ask too much of a child we discourage him. If we ask too little of a child we are not helping him to grow in strength. So our demands upon children should be carefully gauged, and that, of course, with reference to every individual.

Professor Adler saw the truth of this and applied it very concretely to his educational philosophy, and the principles on which he acted was a true one. He defined education in this way. He said, Education is the skillful interposition of difficulties, and his whole system of education was based on the idea of placing tasks before children that were hard, that would stimulate them to their highest effort, and yet not too hard so as to discourage them. He did a great deal of his training by means of manual work, especially metal work. He tells a story about a boy whom he was training and who was given a task to perform in modeling of metal. The boy was intensely interested and he had unusual talent. Well, he worked very hard and came to the Professor with his completed project, modeled in silver, and it was a remarkable piece of work, but Professor Adler instead of telling him it was a remarkable piece of work said, Well, that is pretty good, but you wont really have accomplished anything until you have done that in iron - an almost impossible task far a little boy of that age to do. But here was a little bay of unusual talent, so that if he undertook to succeed in this task, it would do more than anything else he could do. So he stimulated this boy who worked in iron and finally succeeded. It sounds a bit cruel in a way, but after all, one of our greatest temptations is to do too much and so make our children soft.



You know, we are just discovering that now. The whole country is discovering it as we come up against the force of any established educational system that has trained youth to be tough, to be hard, to be able to fight and withstand hardships.* I think our friend Hitler was counting on that - that we had made our youth soft and that they couldnt take it. And I am very suspicious myself that if he had been a generation later it might have been true. He was just a little bit too early, for, while we were softening up, I still believe there was the fundamental character there to show that we could get tough if we needed to. There is a good deal of philosophy in that.

* Spoken March 31, 1942.

After the World War (World War I) the great cry of all our educators was against anything that might give a war-like spirit to youth. We had to tear war out from the roots - tear it up by the roots and cast it away from us - no idea of war or of fighting or anything else of the sort. Everything now was going to be a bawl of cherries. Everybody was going to act with perfect honor and uprightness, with consideration of the other fellow, and they were going to settle everything by a friendly discussion. Thats all right until somebody hits you. But is it all right? When you came to consider what we have spoken of here as character - a love of something outside ourselves that we believe .is right and just, and love it more than ourselves and are ready to defend it. This appears to need fighting spirit, and ability to stand suffering and to undergo hardship and perseverance. How are we going to instill that in the children to practice while they are children and according to their ability? I say it takes a great deal of judgment to do that, but all the teachings of the Writings point to the fact that we have been born in this world, not for a soft life, but to overcome evil in ourselves. And the character that will enable us to face that conflict has to be built upon this natural training that comes in childhood - the ability to face natural hardships and trails and difficulties and to persevere in the face of obstacles. So, it seems to me, that we are not training our children for spiritual temptation unless we are exposing them physically and mentally to the facing hardships, trials and differences.

Now I know that character is deeper than appears on the surface, and we have many instances of children who have been raised under circumstances that we would think would make them soft, who have, under stress in adult age, proved to have plenty of character because that character is deeper than appears. But we also have this as an historic fact: that nations which have ceased to train their children to love what is just and right so much that they will sacrifice everything for it, that those nations have perished. They have perished at the hands of another nation which has been raised to defend what they think is right, to face difficulties and hardships.

Now, I say, whatever our desire to protect our children from the horrors of war, it is not right for us to raise weaklings. We have that problem with us continually in our judgments about what to do with our children and what to allow them to do. We have the struggle within ourselves, between our natural fears for their welfare, our natural desire to protect them from danger, and the realization that if they are to grow up not to be weaklings they must face some of these things.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 112 There is opposition to our games because of the danger, opposition from time to time to doing anything that would involve any danger for our children, and yet just suppose we eliminate it all and have our children grow tip without any idea of danger. What kind of adults would they become? How would they be able to face the realities of life, if they havent been tried to realize that life is not a bowl of cherries, and that by actual experience and not just by telling them, you know. They dont believe it unless they see it, feel it.

To most children, life is just that, though we tell them of the difficulties they are going to face. They listen and say thats fine, but that doesnt apply to them. That may have happened when dad was young but it wont happen now, and they are perfectly satisfied in believing they will get along all right without facing difficulties. Now I say that we need to consider very carefully and use our very best judgment in how to train our children, while they are children, to face the realities of life when they grow up; how to train them when they are children, above all things, to face spiritual temptation when they grow up - although they are not capable of it while they are children.

It takes actual experiences to make people realize this. It was only a few years ago that any idea of military training was taboo in the minds of a great majority of our parents in this country. That was what led to war. That was what made the wars in the world. If we only didnt inspire military spirit with our children we would have no war! I tell you we only just woke up in time from that dream that was a dream and that would have become a nightmare. Our friends, the Japs, helped us to do it out there in Pearl Harbor.       I believe that we need to consider, on the basis of the teachings of the Writings, what is the true philosophy about all that, and we will find it in what is said in the Writings about spiritual temptations. Read these references and reflect upon them.




AC 711.              Temptation impossible unless man is instructed in truths and goods.

AC 737.              Instruction must precede regeneration. (Thus belongs in childhood and youth)

AC 847.              Temptations of childhood and youth are natural as defined in this number. (See also No. 8164.)

AC 857.              Purpose of temptation is to subdue mans externals (Nos. 933:4, 1023, 3318, 892; deliverance from evil spirits.

AC 1661:2              Man cannot come into temptation until adult age. The Lord did so in childhood. (AC 1668, 1690, 5044.)

AC 1820.              Temptation is such as is the love.

AC 2294              Temptation of children in the other life to resist instruction. (Also SD 5668.)

AC 3927.               With children the combat of temptation is between their internal which is the good or delight of the next state, and their external which is the good or delight of a former state.

AC 4274.               Temptation is wrestling and combat. (Suggest the need of effort, and overcoming difficulty by the child according to his strength.)

AC 5291               Remains necessary in victory in temptation.

AE 1164:2              Three ways in which evils are removed: penalties, temptations, and affections of good and truth. With children these are: punishments, self-compulsion, and love of parents and teachers. Each has its place, but the last is the end to be sought.



Section Three                     THE ULTIMATE AIMS OF EDUCATION
Chapter Five

We come now to the last of those qualities that are the final end or abject of education, which cannot be attained until the educational period has passed, and yet for the sake of which all education is given. This last goal of education is use. In other words, all education looks towards the preparation for a use, and it is successful in the degree that it prepares for use in adult life. This, of course, is universally recognized, and yet the difference in education depends entirely upon the concept of use from which it is derived. The narrower the concept of use, the more restricted the type of education that is given to prepare for it. Use does indeed have to do with some vocation or work in human society.

Use is impossible in childhood for it is the result of the application of all those abilities that have been gradually growing during the period of minority. It is the highest fruit of mental growth. All the things that we have been speaking about - free choice, rationality, conscience, character - all these enter into and combine to make up what is called use, so that use is the fruit, the highest product of human growth. Of course, as we have pointed out, every age in the sight of the Lord has its own use. Every stage of mental growth has its own use, and in a broad sense the use of childhood and youth is that of learning. This is the vocation of childhood. The ability to perform an adult use depends upon the doing of this preparatory use, by actual application to those things by which learning is accomplished. But how this process of learning can best lead to genuine use in adult age can only be determined by obtaining a clear idea of what use is.

We find a new line of thought presented to us in the Writings. We find a different conception of use than any we will find in any other philosophy. Use is defined in the Writings and described in DLW 297, 329, and AC 5002. From these numbers we derive the following teaching. First, that use is that which is loved or that which love seeks to produce. Secondly, that love can produce nothing except by means of wisdom. And thirdly, use therefore is the conjunction of love and wisdom. Now if we trace this to its origin we find that the source of all use is the Divine Love, the Lords Love. The end of the Divine Love is that there may be a heaven from the human race. All things of creation are means to that end in the sight of the Lord. They are what are called mediate ends and these are uses. Everything in the created universe, so far as it contributes to the Divine end of creation, is called a use. Man is a use so far as his love is in accord with that Divine end, so that what man loves, what his love seeks to produce, is a use in the sight of the Lord. While the Lord wills to impart to man the delight of use, which is the delight of heaven, He can do so only so far as man from love finds delight in those things which contribute to the Divine end. So the more perfectly mans love is brought into accord with the Divine end, the more fully can the Lord act through him, giving the delight of use both to the man himself and those whom he serves.

Now every man is created by the Lord with the ability to perform such a use - a different use with reference to each man - one that is personal and individual to him.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 115 He is created with the ability to perform such a use with increasing perfection and delight to eternity. This is heaven. Every mans heaven lies in the ability to perform such a use to eternity. From this participation of men in the work of furthering the Divine end of creation came all uses, all human uses in the world. The appearance is - and it is also the reality - that the uses of society arise from the external needs and desires of men that can become a vocation by which the man may earn a living. It is a service which society demands, for which it is willing to pay because it wants it; and the measure of the return depends upon the degree in which that particular service is wanted.

The needs and demands of society therefore determine what uses are practical for man to perform, and if we examine the returns for uses as they exist in the world around us we get a pretty clear picture of what are the delights and demands of our civilization. There is a great demand for all those things that minister to our physical welfare and our external pleasure. There is far less demand for things that minister to internal and spiritual life under present world conditions. But whatever is demanded by human society becomes a use that can provide for a livelihood in any vocation. This is all true, but nonetheless the very desires and demands of society arise from an inherent human nature that has its origin in mans creation. Therefore, if we go back to the demands of society, we see the truth that those things are uses which by virtue of his inherent nature are demanded by men, by society.

Now it is very important to see the relation between these uses in the sight of the Lord and these uses as they appear to men. They are very different. Their relative importance is very different, and that to which the New Church looks with its education is to bring our own appreciation and valuation of human uses more nearly into accord with the Divine estimate of them than we find it today.

In regard to the kinds of uses and their value as the Lord sees them, we are given direct teaching in the Writings. There we find the uses classified in Char. 134, 135. They are classified into four degrees that represent the uses of the heavens in their respective order. The uses of the celestial heaven are called ministries. The uses of the spiritual heaven are called functions. The uses of the natural heaven are called offices and employments. Now note that in each of these heavens there are all occupations to which men can possibly enter, so that ministries, functions, offices, and employments are not what we talk about as occupations. What are they, then, we ask, if they are not occupations?

Going back to DLW 331-333, we find another classification of uses that will help us to understand. First, uses for sustaining the body which comprise its nourishment, habitation, recreation and enjoyment, protection and conservation of state. These are the uses that minister to external and natural society on earth and include every possible form of occupation. We can hardly think of any occupation into which a man might enter that would not have to do with one of these uses: nourishment, habitation, recreation and enjoyment, protection and conservation of state. But in addition to these the Writings speak of uses for perfecting the rational.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 116 These are all things of intellectual understanding - all the sciences and studies that belong to economic, civic and moral affairs. These are the more interior uses because by them the external application is advanced and perfected. By them we learn how to perform the uses more effectively, especially as regards economic laws and the laws of civil and moral life. These uses for perfecting the rational are the means of ordering and providing for material uses. They are mental uses, doing for the mind what material uses do for the body. That is, they provide for the nourishment, habitation, recreation and enjoyment, protection and conservation of the state of the mind. How important they are to our welfare we can realize if we reflect how men will sacrifice all manner of material benefits for the sake of achieving mental satisfaction.

Finally we are told that there are uses for receiving the spiritual from the Lord. These include all things that belong to religion and worship; all things we teach concerning the acknowledgment and knowledge of God and the knowledge and acknowledgment of good and truth from the Word. These are still more interior because by them the mental uses are advanced and perfected. In fact, these alone will give stability, permanence and internal strength to the things of civil and moral life because they will elevate them to the plane of what is eternal. Thus these uses for receiving the spiritual from the Lord do for our internal mind what mental uses do for the external - that is, they provide for its nourishment, habitation, recreation and enjoyment, protection and conservation of state.

Now if we examine this it will show us very clearly that all material uses contain mental uses within them and all mental uses contain spiritual uses within them. They cannot exist without them because man is not only a body, he is a mind and a spirit, and whatever he does for the body, or with the body affects the mind and the spirit. That is the reason why physical uses for the body are said to correspond to mental uses and spiritual uses. They correspond because in the last analysis the needs of the body have been devised by the Lord for the sake of the mind, and the needs of the mind have been devised for the sake of the eternal needs of the spirit of man. Therefore, in the sight of the Lord bodily needs are but a mediate end, ministering to the mind, and the mind is but a means ministering to the spirit of man. So we find that material uses as something apart from spiritual and mental uses are impossible. It is impossible to conceive of such a thing.

Now that is a very far cry from the ordinary concept and it makes a tremendous difference in our attitude toward education. For most people, use means an occupation, which means something we do with our hands by which we make some money, and this has nothing whatever to do with what is spiritual or eternal, with religion. It has nothing to do with a mans internal state of life. There is no greater mistake that we could possibly make. It has everything to do with it. The whole of mans spiritual life depends upon how far and in what way that life expresses itself in the ultimate uses of the body as long as he lives in this world.

We must align in our minds, therefore, these two sets of passages in the Writings and see their relation. From this comes the concept of use that is at the root of our whole philosophy of New Church. We must align education and see the relation between the classification of uses given in the Doctrine of Charity, on the one hand, and in the Divine Love and Wisdom on the other.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 117 They seem very different, but as a matter of fact we cannot understand one without the other, and they supplement one another. Lets go back to the fundamental definition of use. It is a love. It doesnt matter whether we speak about a bodily use, a mental use, or a spiritual use. Every use is a love. If we are speaking about bodily things, a use is something that satisfies a craving or a need of the body for its welfare. This is an inherent desire that is love. And so mental use is something that satisfies a desire, a craving, a love. So also with spiritual uses. Use is a love. Any love, and the end or object of any love, may be called a use in the broadest sense.

But in the sight of the Lord, a self-love - a love that looks merely to ourselves - is not a use because it is opposed to the Divine end, to the Divine Love which is that there shall be a heaven from the human race. A heaven from the human race is a conjunction of all men in a command brotherhood by mutual love. This is what heaven is - a combination of all men in a common brotherhood by mutual love - and it is what is called a Grand Man because it brings all the varieties of human souls into harmonious cooperation, each contributing to the welfare of all the others. That is heaven. That is the end of the Divine Providence, and that end is destroyed by self-love which looks only to our own advantage without regard to any service to others, for this doesnt conjoin but separates. So in the sight of the Lord, uses are loves that conjoin men, loves that assist in bringing harmonious cooperation between men, those loves that organize men into cooperative associations and organizations for a common end - the end itself for which they are organized being one that conjoins and not one that separates.

The value of vocations (external occupations) that have arisen in human society in the development of our civilization depends upon the degree to which they contribute to this unity, harmony, conjunction of men. The degrees of uses mentioned in the Doctrine of Charity are in essence the degrees of love toward the neighbor, of love directed to harmony and conjunction with others. These, as we have said, are the degrees of love that make the heavens. They are the degrees that distinguish the human mind into planes. Now let us note that all these degrees of the human mind are present with every man born into the world, and while each one is created to perform a distinctly individual use, it makes no difference what use that is. These degrees of the mind can be opened by means of love - all of them. When we speak about these degrees of love we are speaking about degrees that are universal to all uses - that is, all occupations into which man can possibly enter. There is no occupation in the world that cannot be a ministry or a celestial use; that cannot be a function or a spiritual use, as well as an office or an employment. These are according to the love from which the use is performed, not according to the thing that is done, but according to the degree of love with which it is performed, because the use is the love and not the thing we do.

It is categorically stated in the Writings that all these degrees of the human mind are present with every man, and that they may be opened - whatever his field of human endeavor or occupation may be.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 118 Now considering this, it begins to open to us a great difference of view about uses and our education, for the ordinary idea is we should direct our children and young people into occupations that will bring them the greatest return. We should encourage them to go into uses that will have the highest social standing. We should stir in them ambition to obtain the greatest amount of money, amount of reputation, fame by means of scene function or occupation that they may enter into. In this is a great mistake because of the fact that people are created by the Lord with special aptitudes and abilities for different uses, that is, different functions and occupations, and their real happiness is not measured by the amount of money they make or by the amount of social prestige they acquire. The truest human happiness lies in the performance of a work or those which we really love, in which we lose ourselves in the joy of the use. This is the real essence of human happiness, and if we want to train our children to appreciate this kind of happiness and make it the goal of their lives, then we must give them a different attitude toward the occupation they look forward to entering, even a different way of selecting that occupation.

I can well remember shortly after the end of the first World War, when the government introduced the income tax - when it became general - what a tremendous amount of opportunity there seemed suddenly presented for those who were Certified Public Accountants, and Certified Public Accountants were making big money. I venture to say that ninety percent of the boys at that time from our schools suddenly decided they were going to be Certified Public Accountants; that was their great ambition. Why? Because they saw this person, that person and the other person getting rich on it. Now that is the normal attitude of children, and the thing we would somewhat criticize is that this is the very attitude at the present day. There is no effort to turn the minds of young people to the things that really count, that really matter with reference to their occupation. There is nothing that could make us feel more sorry than a young boy who, under the impulse of such temporary enthusiasm, went into public accounting but who had none of the natural aptitudes that would make him find any delight in that work. That young fellow is chaining himself as a galley slave all his life if he gets into such a work and prepares himself for it to such an extent that he is past the stage where he could change, and so has to go on with it the balance of his life. He probably wont make a great deal of money because his heart isnt in it - he wasnt created for that kind of work. He finds no delight in it, and even if he does make a great deal of money, the amount of delight and happiness he will get from spending that money will not compare with the joy and delight that a man gets who is in the work that he really loves.

Therefore the central idea of New Church education is to help our young people to realize where their real delight in use lies, where their real happiness lies, and to train their minds to look for use in a way that will help them find that occupation for which they are really fitted and in which they will find the truest happiness, regardless of whether that happens to be a thing that at the moment society is willing to pay a high price for. If our young people could only realize that use is not a matter of prestige and what people may think of us. A function or an occupation that they really love can be raised to a celestial use, no matter what it is, by the love they put into it, the intelligence they put into it, the spiritual values they seek to accomplish by means of it. This, at least to our minds, is the essence of the teaching given us in the Writings, and on it is based our whole concept of education with reference to use as the goal toward which we look.



From a very practical standpoint, the end and object of all education is that young people may grow up and be prepared to perform a use to society in this world, as well as an ultimate determined use in heaven after death. The charge has been made by some that the education and the educational ideals of the New Church are impractical because they are other worldly because our education has as its end preparation for the life after death. There is great fear on the part of some that this emphasis on the life after death will leave neglected the necessities and requirements of this world. Now the whole and complete answer to this lies in the doctrine of use, and if we understand something of what that doctrine of use is, we will be able to see that the only really practical education is one that provides for eternal life at the same time as it provides for life in this world.

The ordinary idea of a use that a child gets, and a youth has, when they came through our schools and look forward to growing up, is that they want a use in which they will be able to make money, make it as quickly as possible, make as much of it as possible, and thereby enjoy all the things that money can buy. With this goes the realization that the uses that command a higher return in money are the ones that also command public respect, social standing, and give personal power and influence. Also certain occupations in different countries are looked down upon as something to be avoided, if possible; while others have high standing and therefore should be sought. And mothers, especially and traditionally, seek for their children the kind of occupations that will lead to these rewards - financial returns and social standing and prestige - and they seek to steer their children away from those occupations that give no promise of such a return.

As a matter of fact, history is full of instances of strong parental influence on children to steer them into channels of use that have been chosen by the parents. A father wants his son to carry on his work, and therefore he goes to great length to try to prepare him for that and to dissuade him from anything else. Mothers have great hopes that their child will grow up to be a minister, perhaps because of the standing of that profession, or a lawyer, and they set their heart on it and try to influence their children from an early age in such a way that they may apparently choose it for themselves. Now the difficulty is in all this that there is not a putting of first things first. There is not the emphasis on what is really important about use.

It is true that young people get emotional ideas that are not very wise, and they need the direction and guidance of parents and teachers in their choice of a use, particularly when they are young and still immature in their judgments. Young people get imaginary ideas of what they want to do, not from any real knowledge of what is involved in the work, but from imaginary pictures of how nice it would be to drive a truck, be a policeman or something. They see people doing things that they think would be lots of fun, and they think that the greatest ambition of life would be to ride on a fire-truck or the life without any realization of what is involved. Now, of course, they need to have some direction with reference to this by those who know a little more about it.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 120 There is no harm at all in their having these ideas and enjoying them when they are young. Such ideas give them ambition to do things, even though they change their minds about it very markedly later.

However, the great point that parents and teachers should recognize is the fact that every man has been created by the Lord with special faculties and abilities that belong to him alone, that make him different from anybody else. These faculties and abilities have been given to him so that he may be able to perform a use to all eternity, in which he will find the fullness of happiness, delight, joy, and blessedness. And he was created with these faculties and abilities by the Lord because of the Divine provision for the perfection of the heavens - something eternal, not just temporary for a few years while we live in this world. This is the center of all that is important about use. If we would minister to the real welfare of our children and young people, we must inspire them to seek that function which is in accord with their individual endowments from the Lord. We must have them seek to discover what are their real loves, their real mental abilities, and how best they can use those loves and those mental abilities for the service of society in this world.

If they follow that as the end and purpose of their search for a use, it will be the greatest possible preparation for their use in the other world. For the Lord who created the heavens, the Lord who created human minds to perform an eternal use in the heavens - that same Lord created the natural world with all its necessities, with all its opportunities. Under His guidance what we call human society has arisen with all its demands, its desires, its needs - out of which come all the uses and functions and occupations of men in this world, These are all under the guidance of the same God for the same end, for the same purpose, and the is not a single function that can possibly minister to the needs of men on earth that was not Divinely designed to minister to the eternal ends of heaven.

But how can that be so? We think of these uses of men, these functions and occupations, as very external bodily ministrations to mens needs and desires that have nothing to do with religion, nothing to do with spiritual life whatever. What difference does it make with regard to mans spiritual life whether he is putting shoes on horses to make a living, or whether he is re-treading tires? They seem to have nothing to do with it whatsoever. Now here is the marvelous thing about the teachings of the Writings. It not only states theoretically that they do have something to do with it, but it shows how they must have something to do with it; practically demonstrates it in such a way that we cant avoid acknowledging it as a fact. As we grow wiser we learn how to utilize these external things, not merely for temporary service to the bodily needs of men, but to use them at the same time for spiritual ends and purposes that are eternal. If we dont, then we do not really perform a use. The Lord may perform the use through us, but if we are not using these things for a spiritual end and purpose, so far as we are concerned, we are thinking merely of ourselves and of the return and the reward and what we will gain by it. We are seeking to center everything in self rather than performing a use to the neighbor.

Now, how will we understand it? There are four degrees of uses that are spoken of in the Writings.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 121 Notice these degrees of uses:


Kinds of uses are also described - four different kinds of uses that are intended to include all the different things that men can do, although our civilization has increased, grown in complexity, since the days that the Writings were given, and we need to enlarge our idea of these things if we are going to fit into them all the different activities that are now available to men. Mere we have the kinds:


Ecclesiastical - all those uses that have to do with religion, including every possible function that has to do with the Church. It includes everyone that belongs to the Church, all the membership of the Church right up to the government of the Church through the priesthood. Every such thing is here involved.

Civil - pertaining to civil life. These are all the uses that have to do with the government of the country from citizenship that is at the bottom - which includes everyone that belongs to the country - right up to the ruler, such as a king, including all the functions of the three branches of the government and every possible occupation connected with it.

Financial - all that has to do with money as a means of exchange. This includes all possible occupations connected with it, from the man who invests - which includes everyone from the ordinary citizen who has any money to put in the bank, or to invest - up to the highest financier who directs the financial policy of the country and perhaps of the world. And it includes all possible occupations between these two that minister to this use.

Material - which includes all that has to do with the utilization of the natural resources of the country, its metals, ores, rivers, streams, and plants - everything that can be utilized by man; also all the means of manufacture and preparation of those materials until they are adapted to human use and are distributed to man. So you have everything here, from the consumer at the bottom, which includes everybody, through all degrees of farming, preparation and manufacture, right up to the highest captains of industry.

These are the kinds of uses. Ministries, functions, offices and employments are the degrees.

Now let me point out that every one of these kinds of uses can be performed in any one of these degrees, it doesnt matter which. So when people get an idea that you have to be a minister or you have to be a lawyer if you want to have a use that is really worth something, they forget that every use can be performed to exactly the same degree, can involve the same love and therefore can be just as valuable in its ministration to the welfare of society in this world and to the perfection of the heavens in the other world.



Ministries are defined as those uses that are performed from love to the Lord. Any use, I dont care what it is any of the occupations, can be performed from love to the Lord, and if that is deep enough, and interior enough, it will lead on to the highest performance of that use. That is, it will lead to the creative and governing ability. This has to do with ministries. They are creative and governing.

Functions are from charity - internal charity. Such internal charity toward the neighbor is an opening of the internal rational of a mans mind and therefore is a love of ministering to the spiritual needs of men, and this now is formative rather than creative.

Offices are uses performed from external charity towards the neighbor, and they are administrative.

Employments are uses performed from obedience which has to do, of course, with those who serve under the direction of others rather than from their own initiative, and this is what is called in the Writings ultimating.

Now let us point out that these fever kinds of uses represent these four degrees. In other words, ecclesiastical uses are those which outwardly represent uses performed from love to the Lord, because all these uses have as their center the love of providing that the Divine shall be with the people, as the Writings say, and the center of it all is to protect and preserve the things of religion and faith and of spiritual life with men. The occupations, functions and offices connected with the Church represent this love but they can be performed from an evil love as well. They can be performed from any one of these loves and we should not confuse the representation with the reality. This is where the mistake is made when people think of ecclesiastical uses as being in themselves higher than any other use. As to representation they are; as to actuality they may not be at all.

So here again civil uses. They represent everything that is from internal charity toward the neighbor because they have as their center the love of country, the love of providing all the things that are necessary to minister to the happiness and well-being of the people in the country. They have the love of country as their center, and that is the basis and foundation of the love of the Lords kingdom after death, which is just what is meant by internal charity - love of the Lords kingdom. All these functions may be performed from any one of these loves, and people make the mistake of identifying that which represents with the thing itself. And so it is true of these others.

You take financial uses. They represent uses from external charity that have to do with wealth, with providing the wealth that is the necessary basis of all business, business love. Businessmen are in that love and rightly so. That is the center of their love of use. The confusion about this comes out in all that is said about the profit motive in modern times, the effort to do away with the profit motive. Now, of course, if the profit motive is simply the making of money and getting wealthy for the sake of ourselves, the profit motive is wrong.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 123 But if by the profit motive is meant that it is the foundation for all uses in the world, then it is quite another story and to eliminate that would be entirely wrong. Men dont see the difference because they are only thinking of the external manifestations of it which, to a large extent in our day, are merely a love of self and of self-advancement by means of wealth.

And so again with reference to materials. They represent all the employments, and so the love of obedience, but not because everyone in this class simply loves to be of service to others by obeying what someone else tells them to do without understanding - not at all. These uses can be performed in such a way as to be extremely creative, formative or administrative. This class of uses includes art and architecture and engineering - all creative sides of the use of the materials of the earth and calls for the highest faculties with which man is endowed. It all can be performed from love to the Lord. And yet, because it is centered in using the ultimate materials, the raw materials, or the natural resources of a country, it is representative of these things that have to do with the very foundation of all the rest - the external employments that minister to everything else. It comes right down to ultimates.

So we have to distinguish between what is represented by these different kinds of uses and the loves from which they may be performed.

                                                                       Ecclesiastical              Civil              Financial        Material       
Creative:       MINISTRIES
governing:       (Love to the Lord)

Formative:       FUNCTIONS

       :       (Internal Charity)

Adminis-:       OFFICES
trative:              (External Charity)

Ultimat-:       EMPLOYMENTS
ing:              (Obedience)       


Now perhaps you are sufficiently confused about it so that we can go on. I have stated this, however, in such a way as to try to show what should be our fundamental attitude toward the training of our children for a use. It should be two things: first, to train them to seek that use for which they are specially endowed - that line of use for which they are specially endowed, regardless of purely external considerations with reference to it. And secondly, that they should seek to perform that use to the highest of their ability; that is, that they should seek to perform it from love to the Lord, and from internal charity toward the neighbor. In this is the opportunity and incentive for the right kind of human ambition. We think of ambition as something wrong, as something that is selfish, and the word is used in that connotation almost entirely.



A very mistaken idea of the teachings of the Writings about use has from time to time been drawn by New Church people, which would seem to encourage our young people to have no ambition, to be satisfied with a mediocre performance of a use, to be satisfied with a situation in life that doesnt give opportunity far the highest exercise of the faculties God has given. That is wrong! Ambition to perform the use far which we were created and to perform that use to the highest and best of our ability: that is not only not wrong, it is our duty. If we can train our children as they grow up to distinguish between a selfish ambition and a true ambition of use, we will have helped them, perhaps more than in anything else we can do, to find their highest happiness here and after death.

That is not so easy. Young people instinctively seek their self-interest even while their ideals may be just the opposite. Children become idealistic to the point where superficially they would have no concern for themselves, but back of all that lies self, until this is changed by regeneration. This is true with everybody, and therefore the best we can do with children and young people is to instill the right ideals, and at the same time lead them to think from Revelation, from the Writings, so that when they are adult and begin to think from themselves, they will discover underneath their external idealism the actuality of self, and wilt be able to meet it and overcome it through regeneration.

If we think of this in connection with the great development in modern times of what is intended to guide young people in their choice of a use, of all the guidance programs by which young people are to be helped, if we study what is actually being done about it all in the light of what the Writings teach, we will find some very useful suggestions for ourselves, but we will also see that there are things there that need to be modified far they lead in the wrong direction. Here is something that needs to be studied and developed by New Church educators, by men and women who are interested in providing for the proper educational guidance of our children and at the same time who have the necessary knowledge from the Writings to discriminate between what will lead in the right direction and what will not. My own observation is that in same respects these present efforts - while they have performed a use - tend to do two things: to stimulate the wrong kind of attitude on the part of youth as to how they should leak towards their function in life, laying too great stress on what they imagine they want; and on the other hand, in presenting these uses to young people they stress entirely their economic, financial and social returns with no reference whatever to the spiritual side, of what might be performed by means of them.

It really is a very complex problem for young people to face in our present day, with so many kinds of things to be done, many of them requiring technical knowledge of which young people can have no realization. The great need is to simplify these things by getting at what is essential in them, helping our young people to penetrate to the come about what is essential in these various uses, so that they may learn to judge in what direction and how far their own endowments and abilities can lead them, and in what general field they should seek far their highest use to society. However, we have a long way to go before we will be able to do that efficiently.



Section Three              THE ULTIMATE OF EDUCATION
Chapter Six

A full understanding of Use requires a knowledge of such doctrines as the doctrine of the Lord, the doctrine of the spiritual world, the doctrine of influx, the doctrine of the Word, the doctrine of spheres. All these things center in uses, and our understanding of what is taught about use depends upon our seeing the intimate inner relation of all these doctrines and their focus upon that subject. Now we can do nothing more here than present certain conclusions from that teaching with reference to our educational policies, and so merely present sufficient of the teachings about uses to give some understanding, perhaps, of what is the basis for these conclusions.

We have spoken of one classification of uses that is given in the Writings, but now there is another classification that has a direct bearing and modifies our thought about it, given in DLW 331-333. There it says that there are three different classes of uses. First, there are uses far sustaining the body. These comprise everything that provides far nourishment, habitation, recreation and enjoyment, protection and conservation of state. There are not many occupations that do not fit into one of these categories so far as ministering to the needs of the body is concerned.

The second classification comprises uses for perfecting the rational. These are said to be all things that teach the subjects spoken of above; i. e., science studies that belong to natural, economic, civil and moral affairs. The sciences are the more interior uses because by means of them external uses are advanced and perfected. We learn how to do all the other things, and to do them even better and more perfectly, by means of the sciences, especially as regards the laws of economics, the laws of civil and political life and the laws of moral life. The better these are understood, the better can we protect and provide for the happiness and prosperity arising from the performance of ultimate uses - those that minister to the body. Uses for perfecting; the rational are more important, and they are distinguished from the others in that they are mental uses, not bodily uses but mental uses. They do for the mind what material uses do for the body. That is, they provide for the mind: nourishment, habitation, recreation and enjoyment, protection and conservation of state. Unless these uses are performed for the mind, the uses that minister to the body alone will give small satisfaction. They will not be sufficient, for unless these are so ordered that men may find happiness by means of them, what is the use? We may minister to the needs of the body, but if the mind is not finding satisfaction in it, there is nothing but unhappiness, discontent. So the mental uses that minister to mans spirit are of no importance, and are basic to the other uses.

The third classification is said to be uses for receiving the spiritual from the Lord. That is, all things belonging to religion and worship; all things that teach and inculcate the acknowledgment and knowledge of God, the acknowledgment and knowledge of what is eternally good and true, and thus everything of eternal life. These uses are still more interior because by means of these, mental uses are advanced and perfected.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 126 We learn how to utilize the laws of civil and moral life for the real happiness of men by means of these spiritual uses, and without them we fail to do so. It is these spiritual uses in the last analysis, that alone give stability, internal strength, vitality, to the things of civil and moral life, elevating them to a plane of what is eternal. And so these are still more important. What can these do for the internal man - the man who is to live after death? They do the same things for him that the ultimate uses do for the body and the external mind - they provide for mans spiritual nourishment, clothing, habitation, recreation and enjoyment, protection and conservation of state.

Now the fact is that these three classes of use are interiorly the same thing. In the sight of the Lord they are all different manifestations of the same use, appearing first on the plane of the body, then on the plane of the external mind that lives in this world, and finally on the plane of the internal mind that is the basis of mans life after death. Therefore we find that all material uses contain within them mental uses, and all mental uses contain within them spiritual uses. There can be no material use for the body that doesnt at the same the minister to mans mind and spirit and in its own special way. As a matter of fact, in the sight of the Lord who is looking entirely for mans eternal welfare, the only purpose of any external use to the body is that it may minister to mans mind and spirit. There is no other reason for it to exist.

Now, therefore, the essence of any use, any function, any occupation in the world, is its eternal value. The thing to which we should lead our young people to look as the center, in their seeking for a function for a use or an occupation, is that which is eternal within it. It should be understood that men may ascend from any one of these external bodily uses to the higher uses of mind and spirit. Any occupation whatsoever should lead men up that ladder from a mere consideration of bodily things to a realization and appreciation of the mental and the spiritual uses that are involved in it.

This is hard for people to understand because our ideas about spiritual life in the other world are inadequate. People think about so many natural things as belonging only to this world - that we just have to do while we are here, but certainly wont have to do in the other world. A good many people feel there are marry occupations that belong purely to this world and have nothing to do with life after death, and they have a hard time fitting them into their concept of the spiritual world. It is not an infrequent thing to hear people remark: The undertaker at any rate will be out of a job in heaven. And there are many other ideas of a similar nature. The fact is that we are not put in this world to do things that will never be of any spiritual value to us. The difficulty lies in our inability to understand what we are doing in this world. What is the real purpose and object of our outward acts? What is the effect of our external use upon our mind and spirit?

That all uses of the natural world contribute very directly to spiritual life and are carried over into the other world, even such things as seem to be concerned merely with material objects in this world, is plainly taught in Apocalypse Explained No. 1214, where it is illustrated in regard to plants. It says there: Every plant contains a use, a spiritual use in the spiritual world, and both a spiritual and a natural use in the natural world.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 127 The spiritual use is for the various states of the mind, and the natural use is for the various states of the body. It is well known that minds are refreshed, recreated, and stimulated, or on the other hand that drowsiness, sadness, or fainting is induced, by the odor and flavors of different kinds of plants; also that the body is healed by the various solutions, purgations and remedies made from plants; and an the other hand is destroyed by the poisons extracted from them. In the heavens the external spiritual use derived from them is the refreshment of minds, and the internal (spiritual use) is the representation of Divine things in them, and thereby also the elevation of the mind. For the wiser angels see in them the quality of affection in a series. These, with what lies hidden in them, are manifested in the varieties of flowers in their order, also in the variegations of color and odor. For every ultimate affection which is called natural, although it is spiritual, derives its quality from an interior affection which pertains to intelligence and wisdom, and these derive their quality from use and the love of it. In a word, from the soil in the heavens nothing but use blooms forth, for use is the plant soul. Because use is the plant soul, in those places in the spiritual world that are called deserts, where those are who in the world had rejected works of charity, which are essential uses, no grass or herb of any kind is seen but gravel and sand. Every good in act that is from the Lord through love to Him and love toward the neighbor, is meant by the uses that alone blossom forth in the heavens. Every plant there represents a farm of use; and whatever appears in it from its first to its last and from its last to its first, that is from seed to flower and from flower to seed, exhibits a progression or extension from end to end of an affection and of its use. Those that are skilled in the sciences of botany, chemistry, medicine, and pharmacy, come after death into a knowledge of spiritual uses from the plants in the spiritual world, and cultivate that knowledge and find the greatest delight in it. I have talked with such and have heard from them wonderful things.

That is not merely true of plants. It is true of everything God has created in the whole natural world. Our study of these things for the sake of adapting them to the needs of human society opens up the possibility of seeing in them their spiritual use and function, and in that spiritual use and function our natural work goes on endlessly after death.

There is a great effect of this on our whole thought of education, and on what we try to do by means of what is called vocational guidance. Our first concern is not to help a child choose a specific occupation. Our first concern as educators is to instill in the child the right affection of use or love of use. That is the first thing. If that is not done our choice of an occupation will have no basis for making a wise choice. A wise choice depends upon the childs being introduced into a right idea of what use is and how an occupation should be chosen.

It is true that with all children and young people their first ideas about use are centered in self - centered in the reward. They think about use as something that is lots of fun. They play with it and they think it is lots of fun; think adults have lots of fun. That is the idea and they want that fun. They want recognition. They want to be great, to appear great to others. They want: financial rewards that will bring them the things that money can buy.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 128 That is natural. It is inevitable. It is the normal state of young people before they have come to the point where they can understand what spiritual things really are.

However, our object should be to lead them from this to a more rational concept of use; to implant the idea of use as a spiritual thing: that they are to live after death; that all their work and function in this world is but to prepare them for that life after death; that their choice of a natural use in this world is a choice that is to affect them to eternity, and therefore that it is a very important thing. Also to implant the idea that a use is not merely doing something with our hands. It is not merely affecting the external bodily life of others. It is something that has to do with mans mind and his spirit, no matter what we are doing externally, and this is the important thing to consider in thinking of our choice of a use. It is also to instill in the child the idea that although he appears to choose his use, and should so appear, he does not really do so. He may be, and indeed is, called upon to choose his occupation. Even in this he has many limitations according to where he is born, what the situation is, what the needs of society are when he grows up - what the opportunities are. He has many limitations, but among those limitations he has a choice. But the choice of the spiritual use he is to perform in the other world he is not required to make. He is required rather to discover what use it is the Lord has created him for, what are the faculties and abilities with which he has been endowed from birth, and how best he can use those faculties and abilities.

Now if we consider this as the center, then we know that he has a broad base for choice. There may be a number of external occupations, each one of which in its own way will promote this use; will give rein to the exercise of those abilities that God has given him, and will, therefore, enable him to develop his innate abilities. So the effect of such training of thought is to broaden the choice, and focus the attention an what is essential in it: not on the superficial things that do not matter, but on what is the center; not on financial reward or prestige, but on use itself; not on merely our external abilities, but on these for the sake of ministering to our internal mental abilities.

Thus we should think of the use not merely as something that we should learn so that we can know how to do it, but that we should grow in intelligence and wisdom. These are the ends sought especially, and here is the point where our training would certainly differ from the modern view. The modern idea is to get children to think, What would I like to do? What is it that I really enjoy? That is what I should choose, and therefore if I find anything in my work that I dont like, then I want something else. I dont want that. This centers everything on self in thinking about use. How am I going to satisfy myself? - not How am I going to be of service to somebody else? There is no work in the world, no occupation in the world that doesnt contain within it drudgery, monotony and unpleasant tasks - nothing! It is in the Lords Providence that it should be so, because not otherwise can we be divested of this idea - to do something to minister to what I like.

It is necessary that we should learn not to think primarily of our own happiness and what we like, but to learn to find our enjoyment in ministering to the needs of others. The tendency of modern training in this matter is, to my thought, superficial. They think of the external sides of these uses and What is the effect on me?


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 129 How am I going to like it? Is it going to be easy? Can I get rich quick or are people going to think more of me? That is what is wrong in all the training of educational guidance.

The central thing to which the want to point the minds of our young people is: How can I make the best use of the faculties with which I have been endowed by the Lord for the service and welfare of others? And if we think that way then we will not be concentrating on what I like. We will not be thinking, If there is something in this that I dont enjoy doing, certainly I want to avoid that occupation. We will be concentrating rather an What can we do best? What are we best adapted to do? It will mean that in our thinking about a use it will not be How much can I get away with - the least work and the most enjoyment? but: How can I learn to do this use well, whatever it may cost in labor and effort and painful thought and learning and study? How can I learn to do it well? That is the basis of an internal idea of use, and it is this that is too often lacking in any education guidance that we find around us, which centers the attention instead on What will I get out of it? Well, that is just the wrong focus.

We realize that the choice can be made only by the individual. He must first be instilled with the right attitude, given the right instruction as to the way in which the choice is to be made. We can do no more than prepare him, by instruction, to choose wisely. But he is the only one that can choose. No educator or parent should wish, in the least, to interfere with that choice or to persuade in that choice. We can merely prepare the child to make a right choice for himself. That cannot be done until the rational mind has been formed and instructed, and therefore we believe that vocational guidance in the early stages of adolescence should not center the thought of the child on making a choice of occupation. It should center his attention on the thing that has to be built up first: that he must prepare himself to be able to make such a choice. He must learn more about what a use is, and how he can make use of the faculties given him, long before he can decide which use he must choose.

Here, I believe, lies a mistake in modern practice. More and more the practice is to ask the child to make a choice, earlier and earlier, long before he is ready. It is a mistake. We should not demand of a child something that is premature, before it is time. Our educational guidance should start from a different center. The development of our own customs and modes and policies of vocational guidance should be directed by our thinking from the Writings. We should not be carried away on a wave of enthusiasm about all that is being accomplished in these things, so that we lose our center of thought and fail to develop the kind of educational guidance that will lead to the ends for which New Church education is intended. Lets use all the things that we find developed in the world around us, but lets use them for our own purposes, ends and objects. Lets not allow them to use us by confusing our minds and getting us to thinking from another center.

The whole idea of use is the most central thing in all religion. Religion is of life. Religion consists in the way in which we live, in the uses we are called upon to perform for our fellow men. That is the reason why it seems so complex and difficult for us to grasp. It is so fundamental, so universal.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 130 The reason why it is confusing to us at the present day is because all modern ideas about uses are built up fundamentally on the basis of the confused religious ideas into which the world has fallen. Unless we go back to true religious ideas and correct our ideas of use from them, we too wilt fall into the same confusion. As a matter of fact, we are in it. Our problem is not to not fall into it - the idea is to get out of it. The only thing is that we have a means of climbing out of that pit gradually, slowly, given us in the teachings of the Writings. If we will go there, and if we will think from that teaching, try to understand it, and then think from it in our solution of these problems about vocational guidance in education, I assure you that it will make a profound difference in the way we will look upon it. It will make us regard the things being done in the educational world around us with discrimination, and not be willing to swallow them whole. At the same time, it will enable us to utilize things that are there developed which can be adapted to our real ends and purposes, in this matter of education and vocational guidance.

Now that doesnt give you a very complete idea of the subject, but it is about all we can do in this course in the time we have with reference to it. It merely indicates that there is a tremendous field for New Church teachers to develop, and they are the ones that are called upon to do that developing. We think of a New Church teacher as someone who is called upon to do teaching in New Church schools, and therefore to take care of the children in the Church, to bring them up in the sphere of the Church, and give them the kind of training to fit them for life in the world. True enough, but if the education of the New Church is to develop, our teachers have to go further than that. They have to consider that their object is not merely to take care of the children, but to provide for the development of New Church education itself. They have to be making some contribution to the philosophy, to the practice of the application of the principles of New Church teaching that can build up generation by generation, little by little, step by step. If we are not making any contribution to that it means there is no progress. New Church education just remains at a standstill and then goes back. Now the world doesnt stay at a standstill. We either go forward or lose ground.

It is true that this development is more possible to some than to others, but the spirit of it, the inspiration of it, is part of the teaching function, the teaching use. Unless we have it, we dont get to the heart of that use. If we are just satisfied to take care of the children that come to us, and do the best we can with what little we know, and we think that is the end of our responsibilities, we dont have that vital spark of fire that will even make our work with those little children at the time all it should be. We have to have something more. We have to be inspired with the greatness of our use with the possibilities of our use! That is brings influx from the other war out o heaven; that is way our use grows. That is true of everybody. We are not all philosophers - cannot all do original work - but we can all be inspired with that spirit that is the very heart of success.



Section Four                     THE PHILOSOPHY OF NATURAL LEARNING
Chapter One

We begin now the last phase of our subject. In general outline, what we have done so far is to give a general definition of education and its successive limitations. We have defined the difference between religious and secular education. We have spoken of the immediate effects of education or what it can accomplish; what it is intended to accomplish, and the ultimate effects of education which are what it prepares for, but cannot itself accomplish - all this in an endeavor to keep clearly in mind just what education is, what it does.

Now we have in the final section of our study what we call the philosophy of natural learning, in which we propose to take up briefly what is the practical application of that philosophy to various phases of educational work. But first we must have clearly in mind what is the relation between what is spiritual and what is natural. All learning during the educational period, as we have seen, is natural. The aim and object of all that learning is spiritual. What is the relation between the spiritual and the natural that will give us a clear idea of what we are to do with our education and its purposes?

The term spiritual is used in the Writings with a special meaning that is not ordinarily understood. As that term is used in common speech and conversation, it includes much that is not included in the definition of it given in the Writings. Men speak of what is spiritual very loosely, to include anything that is moral or ethical or beyond the merely material. The Writings speak of the term spiritual as having its origin from the Divine Being who is Spirit itself. God is a Spirit we are told; by which, we are also told, is meant that He is Life itself. Spiritual includes what is living, what comes from God Who is life itself. Also this life of God is love and it is wisdom. Divine Love and Divine Wisdom as they proceed from God are what are called the spiritual. We are told that this Divine Love appears in the spiritual world as a sun in the midst of which is the Lord. From this sun proceed love and wisdom as heat and light to angels and spirits, and this heat and light of the spiritual sun is omnipresent throughout the whole universe. It is omnipresent in the natural world, as well as in the spiritual world - fills everything and is that through which, or by means of which, the Divine governs His universe.

Therefore, according to the definition of the Writings, nothing can be called spiritual in the true sense that does not partake of love and wisdom from the Lord. (Concerning this, read DW VII:1 and AE 1196:2, 3.) This love and wisdom, which is the life of God omnipresent throughout the universe, is what constitutes in the terms of the Scripture the living soul of all flesh. That is, it is the cause of all life in the whole universe. It is the cause of all motion, all activity, all energy. Nothing could more except by virtue of this inflowing life from God. Without it nothing in the whole universe could move, and therefore this life inflowing from God is the cause of all the forces of nature. It is what moves them. Every natural force or energy is the result of inflowing life - love and wisdom from God - and thus it is the direct result of what is called the spiritual.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 132 It is easy to see, as is said in the Writings, that activity is uncreate. Things that are dead can be created. Things that are immovable or that are moved by same force can be created, but activity itself cannot be created. Its origin is God Who is life itself, and all the various activities in the universe are merely modifications of that life. (Concerning this read DW XII:1, 2.)

Now if it is true that activity is uncreate, then all the invisible forces of nature - electricity, magnetism, chemical activities of all kinds - all these activities of nature that are invisible, but whose effects we see, are in essence spiritual. That is, they are being caused continually by a living force from God, the force of the Divine Love and Wisdom. They are nothing but the Divine Love and Wisdom acting on the plane of nature. So far as we see that this is so, that the forces of nature are the operations of Divine Love and Wisdom on the plane of nature, we perceive what is spiritual in the activities of nature. We see the Divine Providence in it. We see that it is under the government of the Lords Love and His Wisdom. We see that it has a purpose, an end of the Divine that is being accomplished by means of it, and thus we see God in it. This is to see what is spiritual.

When, however, these forces of nature are merely regarded as to their external effects and not as to their cause, they appear as purely mechanical, as forces that are utterly impersonal. They appear as forces that have no relation whatever to anything we can term wisdom or love, but as merely blind energy operating according to fixed law - dead forces. When we regard them merely as dead forces, then the spiritual is not seen in them or in their effects, but only the natural, and all our interpretation of them will lead us away from a belief in God, or from my vision of God. We will confirm ourselves more and more in the idea that there is no Divine Love guiding the destinies of the rest of the created universe. There is no wisdom of God. There is merely an inherent mechanical law that operates, irrespective of any consideration that we might call love and wisdom.

Here is where the difference comes between a view of the world and its operation that is based on a spiritual idea, on the acknowledgment of a Divine Being, and a view of the world that is purely scientific in that it denies anything that cannot be essentially demonstrated. The spiritual idea goes back to God as the first cause, God Who is Love and Wisdom, and therefore it traces that love and wisdom in all that is seen, all the activities of nature.

Now let us note that this spiritual in itself is always invisible, just as are the forces of nature. The air is invisible, electricity is invisible, magnetism is invisible, gravitation is invisible, the chemical forces that operate in the realm of chemistry are all invisible. We see nothing but their effects. The spiritual in itself is always invisible because it is uncreate. It is merely the activity of life. But this spiritual clothes itself with forms that make it tangible and visible, forms in which we see its effects, and through the effects we come to know the cause. The human spirit is invisible. The soul of man is invisible but clothed in a body that responds to its activities. We can read qualities of the spirit and of the soul in and through the body - its gestures, its speech, its expressions of face.



So it is with all things. The spirit becomes visible through, and by means of, a tangible clothing. That which clothes the spirit is what is called the natural. The purpose of the natural is that it may be a garment or covering. This is what is called the natural, and the lowest of it is called the material. All clothing has its origin in the beginning in nature - that is, in substances at rest in what is dead, passive, inert. Only in what is dead, passive and inert is there an ability to clothe living forces. This is what matter was created for: that it might clothe the spiritual forces, make them tangible, and thus enable us to become conscious or aware of spiritual things, by giving them shape and body.

In general, therefore, we can distinguish in this way between the spiritual and the natural, that the spiritual is living force or activity; and the natural is dead, inert clothing or embodiment. Concerning this read in Posthumous Works Vol. I, Additions to the True Christian on 695: I: 3 where it is said that all things of nature are like sheathes around spiritual things.

It is important to realize that the spiritual cannot became visible; cannot be felt. We can have no consciousness of it or its quality, except by means of a clothing, and for this reason there can be no such thing as the spiritual made known to man in any way apart from the natural. We cannot have a spiritual world apart from the natural world. If we did, it would be utterly invisible and unknown. Nor can we have a natural world without a spiritual world. If we did there would be nothing to express or reveal. There would be nothing to order the dead material of nature so that it would express anything or mean anything. We would have merely an inchoate mass of matter without organization or meaning anything. All power to organize, all power to make matter mean anything, must come from a living force from the Life of God.

In anything in the natural world, what we call the spiritual is present as that invisible force we call life. It is present as a formative soul, as an organizing activity, the effects of which we see in the motions and activities of all material things. Now this is true of mechanical forces as well as of what we call, technically, life, or living forces. It is true of those forces that cause the planets to move around their sun, that cause the suns to move in their orbits in relation to one another throughout the starry heaven. It is true of gravitation that orders all things in the whole world around the center of the earth in relation to one another. These are mechanical forces, and yet they are so directed as to produce effects that can only be explained by a love that is directing and controlling them, and by a wisdom that has an end in view. Otherwise they mean nothing.

Throughout the whole natural world, therefore, the spiritual is present, and if we look deeply enough we can see it. We can understand something of it. In the spiritual world, the natural is present - always present - as a tangible form by which spiritual things become visible, by which love and wisdom take an shape and contour that we may know them. This means that there are not really two worlds distinct from each other. There is a dual world. One great dual world we have, with these two elements in it always the active that is invisible and the passive that is visible and tangible, through which the active can be seen.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 134 Neither the spiritual nor the natural can exist alone. There can be no soul apart from its body - or rather, the soul can exist but we can have no knowledge of it, so it becomes utterly unknowable except through a body. A body apart from its soul cannot come into being, for the soul is what creates, forms, and organizes it, and as soon as the body is separated from that soul, it disintegrates - falls to pieces. So the spiritual and the natural must always be together.

Let us note this: the human mind is the only created organism in the whole universe that is capable of seeing the spiritual, of becoming conscious of the quality of what is spiritual. It is the only organism in the whole universe that can understand, for understanding is nothing but becoming conscious of the cause, realizing a cause, a purpose, an end. Animals have consciousness but they have not understanding. Understanding is only possible to human beings. This is the essential characteristic of the human. The human can understand, and if by understanding we mean realizing the cause, then that leads back to the spiritual, because, as we have just pointed out, there is no cause in nature. There is no force nor activity that comes from nature. All life, all power, all activity, everything that can cause motion is spiritual, and comes by influx from the Divine. Therefore as soon as we understand or see a cause, we are looking beyond nature to something that is spiritual, and it leads us back to the first cause Who is God - Divine Love and Wisdom.

That ability of the human mind to understand, to trace causes back to the Divine, is the basis of immortality, for that is what gives man the ability to live in a spiritual world. What is the spiritual world? It is a world in which men live among spiritual things. They live in the realization, enjoyment and delight of seeing and understanding causes. In the natural world we see effects, and we deduce something of the cause, probably with effort and labor, and that cause then seems to be something abstract, something unreal almost because it is invisible in itself. In the other world we penetrate the clothing and covering, and came to a realization of the love and wisdom that cause it. That is the reason why, we are told, in the other world love and wisdom are in the place here of matter and form. In this world we see material things in certain geometrical forms, and from them we deduce scare spiritual quality. In the other world we see love and we see wisdom. Love is the substance and wisdom is the form of what we see.

Because man has been created to live in such a spiritual world, not to remain on earth, but to pass out of this world and come into a spiritual world where he can go on progressing in love and wisdom to eternity - because that is the end of creation for man - therefore the whole Divine purpose underlying all these material forms is that human beings should learn through them to see and understand what is spiritual. That is the purpose. If they do not convey to the human mind some concept and realization of the love and wisdom of God, then they have failed of their purpose. If we squeeze out of them all thought of what is spiritual, and merely insist upon interpreting them on the basis of their mechanical effects, then we have deprived them of the very purpose for which they were given us, and we have deprived our own minds of the very thing for which they were created.



Man is placed in this world of material objects and mechanical forces, endowed with a body and senses through which he can become conscious of these material things, in order that he may acquire spiritual intelligence and wisdom, and that these may be a permanent possession which he can go on perfecting to eternity. He is put among these things in order that by their means he may learn to love the Lord and enjoy and appreciate the spiritual things that come from God which we call the objects of the spiritual world; to learn to penetrate the veil of natural itself, and through nature to see what is spiritual, even as we see a mens soul or spirit through his body. This is what prepares man for his life in the other world, if he uses that knowledge rightly.

Now because man is created to do this, this power to penetrate the outward appearance of nature and to see what is spiritual within it is inherent in the human mind. It is a faculty with which man is born and which distinguishes him from animals. But because the spiritual in itself is not visible - because we see it only in its effects - therefore the revelation or opening up of a vision of that spiritual comes to us, as it were, from within, not from without. From without we can have only the vision of material forms, but, as it were from within, we receive a perception or understanding or insight as to what is meant by these forms. This comes by degrees as a result of growth, as a result of gradual learning, as a result of the ordering of our knowledges in such a way that they reveal that spiritual. And they do so to the extent that those knowledges are ordered around the idea of God or the Lord as the center, the cause of all. If our knowledges of nature are not ordered around that central idea of God as the cause and origin and source of all things, then our knowledge will be confused, unrelated, and will not lead to the perception and understanding of what is spiritual.

This is what makes such a great difference in education - how we order those knowledges for education. It is not just knowledge that counts. It is the ordering of it; the way in which it is given so that it means something. We can tell children a thousand different things, all disconnected - That is true, this is true, the other is true - without any relation one to another, and we have not taught them any truth whatever. But as soon as we say, This is true because of such and such a thing, and put things in a certain order so that they mean something, then we have intelligence, understanding and wisdom - the revelation of the spiritual.

Education is the means whereby we can do something of this ordering. Let us not propose to do it all, by any manner or means. For the most part, that ordering is done by the Lord Himself in our minds, spontaneously. Because our minds are created to see spiritual truth, therefore the mind itself spontaneously puts things together to mean something. If it didnt we would not be able to teach at all. That is just what animal minds do not do - beyond what is necessary for their life - but childrens minds, spontaneously put things together, not always the way we want. Their ability to put things together and to recognize when they are put together in the right order is the only possible means by which they can be educated. However, we have something to do about that - a great deal to do about it as educators, and that is where our problem comes. We will speak of that next - the ordering of knowledges.



Section Four                     THE PHILOSOPHY OF NATURAL LEARNING
Chapter Two

Continuing the subject of the difference between the spiritual and the natural, we want to note the difference between the natural and the material. The material includes all the objects of nature, both organic and inorganic, and the natural refers to the sensations, ideas, and mental objects drawn from nature. These, in themselves, are immaterial but they derive all their form from material things.

These natural things are in three degrees or kinds. There are material ideas which are as nearly as possible photographic reproductions in the mind of objects outside of us, mental pictures of the things we see and hear and sense. These are material ideas. And then there are imaginary ideas which are combinations of these within the mind itself, looking to satisfaction of scare desire or purpose. These are not photographic reproductions. (As a matter of fact, even material ideas are not really so.) Imaginary ideas are not photographic reproductions, but are idealized forms drawn from nature. And finally we have rational concepts which are abstract ideas drawn from the imagination, abstract ideas of qualities, characteristics and so on, that are not material at all.

It is by means of these natural ideas that spiritual concepts become tangible to us at all. We would not be conscious of them unless we could see same form of material or rational ideas, and these material, imaginary and rational ideas all have to be drawn from the objects of nature. In other words, we could not have any spiritual ideas by being created or born in a spiritual world. This is the reason we must be born an earth in a material world from which comes all the clothing of spiritual things. But within this clothing, because mans mind is created to penetrate it and see what is in back of it, we can care to see spiritual realities. Material things are tangible and sensible to us only in the natural world and only by means of our material body with its senses, sense organs that are attuned to the forces of nature. After death we can have no consciousness whatever of material things. The eye is an organ created to register the vibrations of the ether, and the ear is an organ created to register the vibrations of the air, etc. These organs we do not have in the other world, and we can have no consciousness of the material vibrations that they register. Nonetheless, all our sensations in the spiritual world, all our ideas and concepts are clothed in forms that have been drawn from nature, and that is the reason why the two worlds are similar in appearance. Nothing can possibly appear in the spiritual world that has not its basis and foundation in some farm that we have seen or sensed on earth, or that someone else has seen or sensed on earth, and combinations of these. The two worlds, therefore, are altogether alike in appearance but they are entirely different in their internal quality.

The mind of man is a dual organ. It is an organism where the vibrations that come from without meet with an influx from the spiritual world, and then it is between these two that we have what is called sensation. That is true in both worlds. In this world we have our material body with its sensations, and all the vibrations coming to those senses all the time, pressing in upon that brain and causing changes of influx from the other world, because changing the form from without changes the influx from within.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 137 After death we still have what is called the limbus, the finest things of nature, as the basis and foundation for all our thinking, because we must be in contact with people still living in this world. But our whole consciousness is raised above it in the other world, and we have no external organs to receive the impulses from the natural world. The only impulses we can receive from below have to come through the mind. That is the reason why it is said that we rest on the basis of the whole human race after death. We can only receive impulses from without, second-hand, as they have to came through the brains of other people still living. However, that basis must be there as the means by which impulses that come from within can be received.

Now you may ask where does this come from? I believe that our memory of all the things that we have sensed in this world is impressed upon the mind with which we live in the other world; not merely upon the cutaneous envelope or the finest things of nature, but on that receiving vessel that registers sensations. Do you get clearly what I am speaking about? Let us see if we can illustrate it in a crude way. We have a cortical cell of the brain and we have an impulse traveling slang that cell, say, from the eye, and it reaches the point called the surface of mutations. That is the last and final point to which any impulse from without can be carried.

But now within that there must be an organism that receives impulses from the spiritual world, not the light from the natural world, but the heat and light from the sun of heaven. When this impulse coming from without is received, it changes the shape (to put it very crudely) of this outer covering. This at once modifies the influx, and we have therefore a change in the influx from the other world. What we call a sensation is our consciousness of that change in the influx from the other world, not a consciousness of the vibration that canes from without. We never are conscious of that.

Who is conscious of a vibration in the ether? We can take you in the laboratory and tell you just how long a vibration is, just how rapid it is. We can learn all about it in the laboratory but we are not the least conscious of it when we see something. What we see is the object that is revealed by it, any of the things that are around about us. Our sensation therefore is a very different thing from the vibration itself.

The explanation is that our sensation is really an influx, not an afflux from without. When we die, we retain, in the inmost of this covering of the cortical cell, the finest things of nature that are said to be the border or the cutaneous envelope; and while we leave the ultimate brain in the body to be buried, the cutaneous envelope (the finest things of nature) is withdrawn and remains as a recognized basis of our life. So in the other world we have everything except this body that: has been the mechanism by which we have had contact with the material world. Everything else we keep: all this inner structure which is an organism that receives influx from the other world and that is maintained in its order and connection by means of the cutaneous covering.



The only difference is that we dont have the material brain with its nervous system that connects with the senses of our body and gives us this contact with the other world. But we still have this connection by means of the minds and brains of people living in the world. We receive impulses from them according to the way they react to their surroundings, and so we are in direct contact with the natural world. This is the reason why it is said that if everyone in this world should be killed or destroyed and there should be no one living in this world, the spirits that are in the other world would become unconscious. They would be likely to swoon, and therefore would have to be transferred to some earth on which there are people living in order to maintain their conscious life. So we have this inner structure which is an organism formed, not to sense vibrations from the natural world, but to receive impulses of love and wisdom from the sun of heaven. Here also in this inner structure, we have built up all the impressions, sensations, memories of our whole life in this world. And that goes with us.

Now lets note that the mind which is built up by these sensations during our life on earth is of three degrees. There is first, the sensual plane of the mind that is made up of material ideas such as are formed in infancy. Babies merely sense the things that are around them and form ideas that are mental pictures of the things they sense. And these sensual or material ideas we continue to farm throughout our life. In fact, it is most important that we do farm accurate material ideas of the things around us, as the basis of all our thinking. That is the truth in the importance of scientific investigation and a scientific attitude of mind. We must be accurate in our mental pictures of what is around us.

The second plane is called the natural, and is made up of the imaginative ideas that are formed from these material ideas. They are, as we have said, the same mental pictures, but now recombined to adapt themselves to what we want, to what we are striving to obtain, to some object or goal that we have in view. Therefore they are idealized. They are mental dreams of what we would like things to be, rather than of what they are. And from these mental pictures of what we would like things to be, there comes all the possibility of attaining our hopes and ambitions, all invention, all progress in external civic and moral conditions of society. All of these are brought about through human effort because of the fact that we have the power to idealize what we see, and from that to picture something that is more perfect or more in accord with what we wish to attain. This imagination is the next plane which has been abstracted from material ideas and from the simple photographic reproductions of what we see around us. We might say that the difference between material ideas and natural ideas is as the difference between a photograph and a work of art. A work of art always conveys an idea - an ideal of some sort. It seeks to express something, not merely to make a photographic reproduction.

The plane of this mind is the rational, which is abstracted from these imaginary ideas and is what we call abstract thought. It is a formation of principles, laws, generalizations, which enables us to see much more in what we have derived from without, to understand the relation of one thing to another. It is this which enables us to understand causes and uses.



Now there is where we come to the border lines. In rational thought we pass over from the natural to the spiritual. Why? Because every idea of use, of purpose, of cause, comes from within, not from without. It goes back to some concept of a God Who has created these things for a reason, for a purpose. As soon as we begin to reflect on what is the use of things - why they are so - the mind is led back and back at last to a first cause called God, and to see that this first cause is not merely a mechanical force but is Love and Wisdom - Love and Wisdom seeking an end of use. This is the essence of spiritual life. It is all spiritual life is.

Now what is the difference? So long as we are looking at these things that come to us from below, as it were, merely trying to reproduce accurately what comes to us from the surface, accurately interpreting the impulses that strike the brain; so long as we are imagining how to improve these things so that they will satisfy our natural desires, our natural pleasures and delight; and so long as we are merely trying by rational thought to see how better we can adapt these things to our external desires, just to that extent we are looking to things from without, from the natural world, from matter, from nature. And it all centers in self. How can I have a better time? How can I enjoy these things more fully? How can I possess more things? I get more pleasure out of them? This is the essence of the source of natural thinking, and it comes from focusing our attention on the world around us and what it can do for us. It holds the mind down on a superficial understanding and interpretation of everything. This is the characteristic of natural thinking.

But on the other hand, we may begin to think, not what all this can for me, but for what was it intended? How did it come into being and for what purpose? For what end? For what use was it created? This leads us at once outside of ourselves, for we are created to recognize as an axiom that with sore millions and millions of people in the world these things were not all created for me. There are a few other people to consider in regard to them, and therefore things must have a use that is quite apart from my particular enjoyment of them. That then at once leads us back to think of the cause and origin and source, and, as I say, back finally to a first cause, to a God of Love Who from Wisdom has created this whole world for a Divine purpose and has created us in order that we may contribute to that end. This is spiritual thinking.

With spiritual thinking we have the same material sensations, but in the one case we are looking at them from without and limiting our thought to what comes to us from without; and in the other case we are looking at them from within, as to their source and origin and use. Material forms regarded purely from below can yield only scientific truth at first. This is the accurate reproduction in our minds of their form, their structure, their molecular composition, their mechanical energy, their chemical make-up. All these are purely natural ideas. We have no thought as to why they were created, or for what purpose. But these material things viewed from within or above, at once lead us to think, Now then, it is not enough to know just what shape a thing is, or how many molecules it is composed of, or what chemicals go to make it up. We must ask what is it for? How did it get that way? Where did it come from: So at once we are led to penetrate the appearances that come from without and to search rather into those perceptions and sensations of what is love and wisdom which come from within, so that we think of it not from nature but from God.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 140 That is the difference between natural thinking and spiritual thinking.

Let us in that connection, with that in mind, note what the Writings say: that man is born sensual and must by growth become natural and then rational before he can become spiritual. This means that children, innocent children, growing up through the period that we call minority and the period of education, are building up and forming the natural mind that is capable only of natural ideas. And this building up must be done first, before spiritual ideas are possible and before spiritual thinking can begin.

Children can learn first to sense correctly and discriminate the different sensations that came to them. That is what begins in infancy - to differentiate between forms and colors and sounds and recognize them when they see them. Then they came to the point where they can learn what things are, and can build up imaginary pictures in their minds that are formed out of all these sensations, ideas of things. And finally they come to the question of what things are for; how they are to be used; how they minister to our natural needs and desires. All these they have to learn one after the other as they grow, before they can even begin to have any idea of spiritual things.

But let us note that within all these natural ideas there are spiritual ideas that are not yet conscious to the child. Why? Because of the fact that the little minds that are doing this sensing are not merely created to sensate, to sense the things that came from without, but they are also created to feel love and wisdom that came from within. And they do feel this before they feel anything else. The only thing is they cannot visualize it. They can only visualize it or picture it or think of it by means of what cones from without. They have not yet built up the possibility of seeing why, and how, and in what way these things from without may clothe the ideas of love and wisdom, so that they can get a real idea of what love and wisdom are.

The fact that sensations have spiritual ideas contained within them is evident from this. When we die and pass into the other world we came spontaneously and without realizing or learning into the ability to see and under stand spiritual things, even if we have not been following any of them in this world at all or come to the point when we could visualize them. Everyone in this world has to learn a natural language - English, French, German, Greek - whatever nation he was born in or brought up in - he learns that language. He doesnt speak these languages in the other world. He finds that he can speak as spirits and angels speak without learning it, because their speech is from a spontaneous expression of spiritual ideas.

That is what is meant in one sense, at least, by the first miracle that the Lord performed while He was on earth - the turning of water into wine. This miracle was intended to teach that while we are born into this world with a material body and sensations that come from a material world, and while our first ideas are all based on a superficial understanding of these natural things, and all our feelings are attributed to natural things and we know nothing about a spiritual world - still spiritual ideas are contained within, unconsciously to us. And as by a miracle, when we die all our natural knowledge is transformed into spiritual knowledge and understanding.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 141 That also explains the reason why, although we have to learn so many things and do so many things that are purely connected with the material objects in this world, and we think, What has that got to do with our life after death?, still we do have to study hard to acquire external acknowledges and work to acquire external skills. The truth is that all these skills and knowledges, as soon as we get in the other world, will be transformed, as it were by a miracle, into spiritual skills and spiritual knowledges. Not that they are really transformed, because while we are learning these external skills, it is all affecting own minds. All that happens is that all bodily things drop away when we die, but we go on. It seems to us like a miracle. The truth is that that is what is taking place continually with us. If we did not have that mind, which is constantly interpretive, we would not understand anything.

Such a philosophy of mans life in this world and the other concerning the relation between these two worlds, a relation between mans two minds, has a tremendous influence on our whole idea of education. It means this: that if we are merely thinking of this world and how we can train children to satisfy their natural desires and wants and pleasures in this world; how we can fit them for some external occupation in society so that they can earn a living; if that is the whole object of our training and education, then we are ignoring the very essential purpose for which they were given minds. We are not using the very things of nature themselves for the purpose for which they were Divinely intended. So we have to start over again to consider in our education how we should use all the experiences through which our children pass as they grow up; to consider how we can use those experiences in such a way as to open their minds, when they grow up, to a realization and appreciation of spiritual values. This is the whole purpose of education.



Chapter Three


We have been reviewing the fundamental philosophy of the Writings in explaining the relation between what is spiritual and what is natural. This was in order to illustrate a little later the application of New Church Principles to various phases of teaching. We continue now to speak of the educational implications of this philosophy; the relation between what is spiritual and what is natural. We have shown that nothing natural can exist apart from what is spiritual, and for that reason nothing natural can exist in which there is not what is spiritual. The spiritual is present in all things of creation, and necessarily it must therefore be present in every subject of instruction.

The spiritual is present, and true intelligence and wisdom consists in seeing its presence and understanding it. It is, however, hidden to begin with. We do lot see it. We only see the outer covering that we call the material thing. Within this the spiritual is as a hidden cause, as the active force that produces the thing that we see, as the secret purpose and use for which that thing has been brought into being. Really to understand any of the phenomena of nature or any of the experiences of human life, is to perceive something of the hidden cause, the spiritual that is within. This is what we call truth, which provides the light of the mind in which we perceive the use, the purpose, the cause, the end, and in this lies all human intelligence and wisdom. For this reason there is no such thing as true intelligence, or true understanding, that does not involve seeing something spiritual. There is no such thing. Men suppose that there is, because they take for granted that they are wise and intelligent when they merely grasp the relation of one material object to another, thus coming to under stand what they call the laws of nature. This enables them to do a great many things with natural objects. But we can possess all that without having the least of intelligence and wisdom.

It is universally recognized that the purpose of education and instruction is to impart truth, to give light to the mind, to enable the student to under stand - understand life, understand his experiences, understand his environment. That is universally recognized. It is the object of all teaching, and reveal in the subject things that in this we entirely concur. Whatever we may be teaching, the purpose is to reveal in the subject that we see but that are as yet hidden from the child; to help the child or student see something new that he had not seen before. This that takes place by means of an unfolding or removal of a covering and a penetrating of the outer appearance to see the inner reality.

The appearance is - and the usual understanding of that is - that there is a covering or a veil in the objects around us that has to be taken away, and then as soon as it is taken away we see more deeply, but that is not the case. The removal of the revering is not in the objects around us but in the mind. We may, indeed, remove an outer covering so that we can see certain things with the eye that were not seen before. This is done if we look through a microscope. We can see things that are contained within some object that we are looking at that cannot be seen with the naked eye. It is also true if we look through a telescope. We can see things in the heavens that are not visible to the naked eye.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 143 But let us realize that truth is never seen by the eye. Many people could look through a microscope and see all the things there and not have the faintest idea of what it is all about. Their eye would see exactly the same thing but they would not understand. Only one who has the knowledge and the training can interpret what he sees, so that he really knows what it means. That interpretation is in the mind and not in the eye. So also when an astronomer looks through a telescope and watches the movements of the heavenly bodies, with a background of knowledge and understanding, he knows what he is looking at. An amateur, a student, who knows nothing about astronomy, looks through the same telescope, sees exactly the same objects and has no understanding whatever; the eye does not understand. It is the mind that understands. You know the well known example of Isaac Newton and the falling apple. He was not the first one who had seen an apple fall, but he was the first one to understand and to see why. Thousands and thousands of people had seen the same thing with the eye but they had not seen it with the mind - as to what it meant.

So I say the real instruction that brings understanding, that imparts truth, is never accomplished by removing coverings from objects around us. That merely reveals something else to the eye. It is the removal of a covering of the mind that alone can give understanding. This is something that is not so clearly understood by many educators. It is supposed that if we can only impart more knowledge, bring more things into the environment of a child, so that he can see them; if we can only extend his vision by means of a microscope or a telescope so that he sees more things, we will be imparting to him intelligence and wisdom. That wont be true. It doesnt follow at all. Truth is the relation of things to one another, and to see truth is to see that relation; not to see the things of the eye, but to see the relation of that thing to other things, and that can only be seen with the mind.

There are coverings in the mind, successive coverings, that must be removed. Each time a covering is removed a whole new world of truth is open. But let us realize we cannot remove these coverings from the mind of anyone. The removal of these coverings from the mind in childhood is a matter of growth. It is a normal result of mental development and it runs its own course; we cant force it. It is a process by which the mind, step by step, is opened to see a nature and more interior truth, until at last it can came to see the primal cause of all things that we call God. God is the only reality. All created things are coverings through which God is to be seen. They are called appearances, and even the highest angels are in the appearances, God cannot be seen except as clothed in appearances, and that is the reason for creation. All the objects of creation provide appropriate clothing through which the Lord may become present and visible to men. And the steps of approach to that vision of the Divine are what we call the stages of growth. These stages of growth are nothing but the opening of a door that permits the seeing of higher truth that was not, and could not, be visible before.

All the truth that is ever possible to man must be involved in the objects of nature that he sees with his physical eyes, for all the higher degrees of the mind are built up from the things we see in nature around us. There is no other source.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 144 We cannot imagine anything that doesnt have its basis or origin in something we have seen and felt or heard and tasted with our physical senses. Therefore all truth must be included, wrapped up, in the objects of nature.

In the Arcana 10028 this is taught. It says that when man is being purified, first such truths are learned as can be apprehended by the sensual man - that is by the senses of the body. Such are the truths in the sense of the Letter of the Word. The Letter of the Word is the history or story of people, events and places. Afterward are learned more interior truths, such as are collected from the Word by those who are in enlightenment, for these teach its interior sense from various passages where the sense of the Letter is unfilled, as for instance, in the Parables of the Lord where He speaks in imagery drawn entirely from nature, but where there is obviously a deeper meaning. From these, then, truths still more interior are afterward drawn forth by those who are enlightened, which truths, together with the former, serve the Church for doctrine. By that truth is meant abstract principles of truth, not imaginative ideas but abstract ideas. Angelic wisdom is from truths still more interior and finally is from inmost truths in the third heaven. These truths, together with the former in their order, close in the ultimate truths in the external sensuals and are all together there.

If you will reflect on this, it describes the opening, first, of the sensuous mind in infancy, then of the imaginative mind in childhood, and finally of the rational mind in youth. These are the three steps that are there described as successive openings. On this basis, then, you have the opening of the spiritual mind, which is the basis of angelic wisdom in its three degrees, and it is said that all of these are contained in the senses and the very objects of nature which are impressed upon our senses in infancy.

This removal of coverings of the mind can only take place from within. It is under the immediate control of the Lord. It takes place variously with different children - some more rapidly, some more slowly - but it takes place with all that normally develop and in that same order: from the sensual to the imaginative and thence to the rational. Mental growth is nothing else but the successive removal of these veilings or coverings from the mind, and this by the Lord.

The infant is sensual; that is, he can understand nothing except what he sees, hears, feels. His whole life is centered in exercising the senses and finding delight in this exercising. He advances from the beginning of this state, which is the very beginning of his consciousness, by continuous development or degrees, gathering more and more sense impressions. These at first are very general ones, and then more particular ones which make him more discriminating. This is the whole process of infantile mental growth.

Not until the child has reached a point at which a door can be opened in his mind can he pass from infancy to childhood. This passing from infancy to childhood is nothing but passing from centering concentration on merely sensing things to concentrating the attention on ideas, imaginative pictures that could not possibly be found until a great mass of material, out of which they are built, has been stored in the mind. Imaginative ideas then begin to build up in the same way, by continuous development.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 145 First, general ideas, then more and more particular ideas, and more and more discriminating, all building up by a continuous development throughout childhood. But again there is no possibility of rational understanding (that is, abstract understanding) apart from concrete pictures in the mind.

There is no possibility of rational understanding until sufficient material has been gathered on this plane of the imagination, out of which abstract ideas are to be built, and until the plane of the mind that is capable of grasping abstract ideas is opened by the Lord. Then the mind is centered, not upon the outward form of things, but on their inner quality.

We perceive that objects which we see around us possess qualities, and in attempting to express these qualities, to express what we feel about them, we invent, if you please, abstract terms that will describe them. Abstract terms are merely efforts to express and embody things we inwardly feel, but which we cannot sense because they dont exist outside of us in nature. They exist only in the spiritual world, yet we feel them. We are conscious of them. We have definite realization of them, so we invent terms to express what we feel. This is abstraction, if you please. So when we speak about abstract ideas, we speak about the beginning of sensing and understanding or seeing things that are entirely above nature. We say that they belong to the mind and its world and this is really true. They belong to the mind, but more than that they belong to the spiritual world in which the mind is living. They are not just imaginary concepts that are inherent in our own particular mind that have no existence outside of us. If so, they would have no value. They would have no truth. We see spiritual things that are true, that are not dependent on just our own particular mood or state of mind, but are true anyway, true at all times. We feel them, sense them.

In order to accomplish this, we express abstract things in terms of relation. In order to express them, we put them in terms of relation. That is why it is called rational: the ratio or relation of things. For it is by seeing the relation of things that we perceive their quality? What do we mean by their quality? We mean their use, their purpose, the reason why they were created, the effect they produce on other things, what has caused them, brought them into being. These are all qualities. They are all spiritual, and they are what we feel or sense within us as a higher truth. Only when we have reached a point in development where we can see these abstract ideas and can appreciate them - realize why -they are more important that a mere imaginative picture of something outside of us - only then is it possible to begin to become conscious of the spiritual, for spiritual ideas can rise only out of these abstract concepts. Spiritual ideas can only be based on rational ideas - relations - and they can come into being only after a store of rational abstract concepts has been built up in the mind.

Education is that process whereby we endeavor to assist in this gradual enlightenment of each plane of the mind, and in preparation for the opening of another plane by the Lord, as a child grows. We cannot open those planes. We cannot bring that child to see the higher kind of truth. Only the Lord can do it, but we can provide the materials that are appropriate to that plane of the mind which has been opened, and we can increase the number and variety of his experiences on that plane.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 146 We can order the things that are there presented in such a way that they will must perfectly serve the higher plane of the mind when it has been opened, when the veil has been removed. That is all we can do. That is what the work of education is all about, so far as the work of instruction is concerned. By supplying material first of the senses, then of imaginative ideas, and finally of rational concepts, we teach infants, children and youth. We teach them effectively in the degree that these materials are ordered from our own understanding of higher truth, from the truth a child is not yet ready to see and that we cant make him see. We cant yet explain to him in any way he can grasp, but we can present the materials appropriate to his stage of growth from our understanding of that higher truth. That is what makes all the difference in the world as to what the effect will be on the mind.

Lets consider here children being educated by parents who have no belief in religion, no belief in a God or in a life after death, who are fully convinced that all the values of life are to be sought in nature. The kind of material they will select to present to their children, and the way in which they will order that material in presenting it will be to protect those children against any idea of being carried away by religion, to guard them against thinking from Revelation, against religion and the Word, and to emphasize over and over again that the only source of knowledge is sense experience of nature. The kind of preparation they will give for the opening of the mind is a very different one - extremely different.

As a matter of fact, when such a child has innocently accepted that idea, been brought up to love it, to believe it is the real truth, and that he must be careful to preserve it and not to be deluded by anything else, his mind is almost closed. It is almost impossible for the spiritual degree of his mind to be opened when he grows up. He wont even look at the things in which spiritual truth may be seen. He will turn away from the Word, from Revelation, or any religious teaching. He will hold his mind fixed in purely scientific and sensual knowledge and everything else will be outside his world. Even where there is a general belief in God and in religion, such a belief holds: Well, the things of religion are all right in their own place, but they should not interfere with the external chances of our children of making their way in the world. They should not be given any place of importance that would deprive our children of all the chances of fulfilling external worldly ambitions. Therefore the religious teaching, while given, is not tied in effectively with the other training of the child. With this teaching, even then I say, the mind is built up in such a way that it doesnt look for the religious implications of knowledge. It doesnt seek to go back to the First Cause, it doesnt penetrate or try to open or understand more deeply its environment or experience, but rests perfectly satisfied in professing religion on the one hand and living its life purely from natural ends and ambitions and purposes on the other.

This is a very wide-spread state of education at the present day throughout the world, and it is one of the reasons why the truth of the New Church is so difficult for people to understand. Their minds have not been trained to look for the religious implications in knowledge. As a matter of fact, their minds have rather been trained against that, even by religious people who have the idea that religion is an emotion, but that when it comes to any idea knowledge, they can only look to scientific interpretation.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 147 And so, while we have a source of spiritual truth that is given us by the Lord in the Heavenly Doctrine, and while it is spread throughout the world, in libraries throughout civilized countries, and while there is every opportunity for people to know that truth, nobody does. I have seen, in many libraries, copies of the Writings stuck away on a back shelf of the stacks to get full of dust. Nobody looks at them; they are far more interested in other things in the library, in other books. People are not searching for that kind of truth. Their minds have been turned away from it from the time they were little children by the way they are taught, and they are given a prejudice against it.

What is the remedy for this situation? There is no remedy, except that we shall change our type of education. We shall have in mind the tremendous value of seeing and understanding and realizing this spiritual truth, and we shall have this so continually before us in our teaching that we will select our materials and we will arrange our materials with this as the final end in view. As a result, the preparation of the mind for an opening to the reception of spiritual truth will be tremendously enhanced. That is the theory of the philosophy of New Church education. Is there any subject on the curriculum that doesnt lend itself to this kind of teaching? Is there any subject on the curriculum which we can say has nothing to do with that final opening of the mind to see spiritual things? I cant imagine any, because all the things we teach, all the subjects of instruction, are drawn from the things we are going to experience in the world around us, and that whole world has been created by God for no other purpose than that we may come eventually to see Him in it, to see spiritual truth.



Chapter Four

Let us refer again to the difference between the teaching of religion and the teaching of secular subjects, It follows from what we have been saying in previous classes that all teaching - whether of religion or of any secular subject whatever - all teaching in its end is spiritual. The final end or purpose of all teaching is spiritual, whether we are teaching religion or whether we are teaching secular subjects. Also it follows from what has gone before that all learning - whether it be in classes concerning secular subjects or in classes concerning religion - all learning is natural. The end of all teaching is spiritual, but all learning is natural in both secular and religious subjects. These are the inevitable conclusions from what we have been saying about the relation between the spiritual and the natural. While all subjects of instruction contain what is spiritual within them, and while the opening up and revelation of this spiritual is the end desired, yet this opening up or revelation is the result of growth and cannot be achieved before adult age is reached. It is the mind that learns, and the mind can learn only in the degree that it has been opened. The mind is opened during infancy, childhood and youth only as to the natural degree, and this in a threefold division: sensual, imaginative and the scientific or rational. No other learning is possible.

Now lets be clear on the point that this applies to all teaching - all learning - even that of religion. When we are giving religious instruction to children we are not teaching them spiritual truth; we are teaching them about spiritual things, and there is a great difference. We will teach them about God. We will teach them about the Word. We will teach them about heaven and the life after death. We, will teach them about what they must do in order to be saved - all this, but the ideas of God that they will derive from our teaching will be natural. They think of God as a man. Often they think of Him as a big giant, a powerful man. Their whole idea of Him is derived from their mental picture of actual persons, and often little children identify God with actual persons. Their whole idea of God, no matter what we say about Him, will, be anthropomorphic. That is, it will be in term; of limited human qualities such as they experience in those around them.

We may tell them that God speaks to man through the Word. This in itself is a spiritual truth, but their idea of it: will be a purely natural idea of God talking, speaking, and any real concept of how Divine Revelation is given, any spiritual idea of how Divine Revelation is given, is beyond them, impossible to them. They will actually think of the Word just as they think of any other book, think of its stories just as they think of any other stories, except that they will know that it is holy, anti that everything in it is true because the Lord has said it. That is the only difference. We tell them that there is a spiritual world and a heaven and a hell, and we tell them many things about the life after death. Their whole idea of it will be a purely natural one based on their experience of this world. They will think of it purely in terms of this world, only more perfect, more wonderful. The real difference between the natural world and the spiritual world is altogether beyond them. They cant understand it. Their minds are not yet opened to the point where they could see what that difference really is.



We tell them that man is to be saved by keeping the Commandments of the Word and they accept that and understand it, but the Commandments of the Word to them are purely natural things - they must not steal, they must not kill, they must not lie and so on. The external interpretation of those things is the whole of their idea. They can have no real understanding of what it is spiritually to kill, spiritually to steal, spiritually to lie. And therefore while we are teaching them about those commandments as spiritual things, they are learning them naturally as natural truths. It is the only way they can learn.

It was the only way that the Lord could teach His Disciples, as we find evident in His parables throughout the New Testament. When He taught about heaven it was always in terms of natural things that were in the experience of the disciples. The disciples whom the Lord was teaching were like children in their knowledge and ability to understand. They were like children, and therefore the Lord could not teach them spiritual truth directly, such as we find now given in the Writings. He told them about heaven but He told them in parables. He compared it to natural things: heaven is like a marriage feast; heaven is like a pearl of great price; heaven is like a grain of mustard seed, or it is like heaven. All these things were purely natural ideas, but from them they gained a sense of something deeper which was insinuated by means of that teaching. Their idea of it was entirely natural. They didnt have any concept of a really spiritual kingdom of God or heaven, as was evident from their reaction to it when James and John asked to sit at the right hand and at the left hand of the Lord in His power. It was very evident they were only thinking of Him as becoming a king over the land of Israel and their being able to act as next to Him in the power of the kingdom. They had no idea of heaven that was spiritual.

So again the Lord spoke to them about spiritual truth - the truth that He had come to teach them, and He compared it to water as when He spoke to the woman of Samaria at the well. When she came to draw water from the well of Samaria, the Lord spoke to her about living water that He could give her which would spring up like the fountain of everlasting life, She understood only natural water and said, Give me of this water that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw. Yet she knew that something else was meant. She knew that something deeper was intended, especially when the Lord told her things about herself that the Lord could not possibly know unless He had supernatural insight, and she said, I perceive you are a prophet. She went and told the people in her village, Is not this the Christ that was to come, for He has told not everything that ever I did. The Lord could not have told that woman what spiritual truth is in terms that the Writings now tell it to us. She would not have had the faintest idea of what He was talking about, but He did tell her in terms of natural comparisons by which she could get same idea of what was intended in it, although she thought of it only as natural.

So it is with children. The Lord was always saying things to the disciples that astonished them because they were not literally true, and yet He would not say them unless they were true. For instance, on this same occasion after the woman of Samaria had left, the disciples came back from the village where they had been to buy meat, and the Lord said: I have meat to eat that ye know not of, and they wondered.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 150 And He said, Lift up your eyes and look on the fields, far they are white already to harvest. But it was not the season for the harvest. It was yet four months before the harvest should come and they were astonished at what He said, but evidently know it had another meaning. They did not know what it was exactly, but they knew that something else was meant, and so their minds were searching for that something else. By this means He insinuated a truth that they came more fully to realize after His resurrection.

This illustrates the way with all children. We must insinuate spiritual truth rather than teach it openly; insinuate it by arousing the realization that there is something deeper in what is said or taught than appears on the surface. The human mind is created to grow in just that way. All our curiosity, all our desire to probe deeper into things, arises from the fact that we vaguely perceive something involved that we do not yet clearly see. If it were not so, we would be quite satisfied that we had learned everything that was necessary about it; seen everything that was to be seen. Then there would be no further learning. This is so obviously true of some who have reached adult age and who have made up their minds that they have learned all that is necessary. They lose that inquiring quality, the desire for something that enables them to be further taught. And children, naturally and instinctively, because their minds are created to see deeper truth, have curiosity and a perception of things deeper than they can see. So while we teach religion to children in purely natural imagery, expecting no more than that they will gather a natural idea from it, yet it is so taught and must be so taught that the mind is led an to seek deeper things, to realize there is something else involved. Therefore they will search for it, and as they know older, will enter into it. If we accept the definition that has been given from the Writings of learning: namely, that to learn is to perceive interiorly in ones self that it is so, then the only things that children can learn are natural things. They can learn about spiritual things, but that is like learning about something they havent seen, telling them about something they havent experienced. They can imagine it; they can think about it, but they can not really interiorly understand it. They will have fantastic ideas about, naturally and unavoidably.

Well, now, if this is true about teaching religion, what is the case in teaching secular subjects? What is the difference? We say our end in the last analysis is to teach spiritual truths, to impart what is spiritual, and we can not do that, even with religion. Then what about secular subjects? To teach religion, as we say, is to teach about spiritual things, and thus to teach spiritual truth in such a way that it may be naturally understood and naturally applied, according to the state of the child. In this teaching the thought of the pupil is directed to the statement of spiritual truth, to the formula: There is a God. There is a heaven. There is a Word of God and it is holy, and so on. This truth is brought down into the natural by comparisons, as the Lord did in His parables. It is clothed in natural appearances, representations and correspondences, such as lie within the range of the childs external experiences, and the idea formed in the mind of the child is, in consequence, a natural one. But because the thought has been directed to spiritual things, because it has been about spiritual things, and because there has been associated with this a sphere of holiness, it has a different effect on the child.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 151 It is because of influx from the other world, the presence of angels in what we are teaching, that the natural idea of the child which is understood only naturally, is spiritually understood by the angels who are present with him. It is in that way that the spiritual truth is insinuated from heaven. The reason why we have the curiosity of which I spoke, the dim perception of something deeper that we do not yet understand, which urges an and leads us to seek far something more - the real secret of this is that we have spirits and angels with us who do see something deeper. What they see in it and what can be insinuated by means of it will, to some extent at least, depend upon how far the teacher sees it. Because the teacher sees it, and orders his teaching in accord with it, the very way in which the thing is presented to the child is in accord with the angelic understanding, in harmony with it, so that the insinuation can be more clear, more obvious, more powerful to the child.

If, for instance, we teach children about God - that He is three persons - we are putting into their mind an idea that is contrary to the whole angelic perception and understanding of God, and we are making difficult for the angels, who are present in our religious teaching, to insinuate that deeper and deeper truth concerning God into which they are to enter as they grow older. If on the other hand, we know that God is One Person and the trinity in Him is like the soul, body and operation within a man, and if all our teaching concerning God is so ordered in accord with that truth, then we are putting into the minds of the children something that the angelic spirits who are with them can infill with the spiritual idea, and so lead an and on to the deeper understanding of the real truth.

So also, if we tell them that man when he dies lies in a grave until some vast future day when his body will come to life again and he will go on living in this world or another one after this is destroyed, we are putting into their mind something that is entirely contrary to the whole thought and understanding of the spirits and angels who are with them. The purpose of mans creation is that he may be prepared in this world far a life and use in the spiritual world. The whole idea of a heaven as it is revealed to us in the Writings is contrary to the idea that we have to have our natural bodies put back on again sometime and live in a natural world, so that idea doesnt insinuate the real truth about the other world. From a correct natural idea that a child must have, he can grow more and more deeply to understand what the spiritual world really .is, what is meant by its being a spiritual world instead of a natural world. We might go on and illustrate the point in many different ways - that the teaching of religion may be very, very different even though the children can only grasp a natural idea. It may be very, very different if the teaching of religion is from a spiritual understanding on the part of the teacher.

Now the same thing is true with secular subjects, only here we are not teaching about spiritual things and putting that teaching into natural forms so that the child can grasp it. We are teaching about natural things in such a way that they may be led to a truer and truer understanding of those natural things which will be a basis for their true understanding of spiritual things, In other words, our direct object in secular teaching is to impart truth - natural truth - about the subject we are teaching, whatever subject that may be. But truth is not merely a series of facts. We find out that this is a fact and that is a fact and we impart that to children.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 152 No, the truth we are trying to teach is the relation between this thing and that thing, and their relation to man and his life. That leads right back to an understanding of what they were created for, why God made them that way, why they are in the form that we find them in, what is the end and purpose that is back of them, and how they should be used in order that that purpose to man may be most perfectly fulfilled. All that is involved in the idea of truth. The truth about a thing always involves its use.

When we speak about natural truth, most people have the idea that we want to find out exactly and correctly what a thing is and also how it can be used in relation to our external bodily needs or desires. That is so, but it is not enough. There is a continuous chain of uses, going from the outmosts of nature right back to God. If we think in a must ultimate way of some natural object like an animal or tree or plant as to what is its use, we can discover many external uses that it performs or fulfills - uses to nature itself, preserving the balance, for instance, of things in nature. We find why it is that certain animals live on certain insects and so on, that they preserve the balance and protect the plants that those insects would destroy. We find this kind of use all through nature, but the real use depends upon the fact that it is of service to men. Men need those things that are being protected. Men need them for their physical well-being, for food or medicine or clothing, or for shelter - for bodily needs. This is another link, a higher Link, in the same chain of uses that had its ultimate in the uses to one another in nature itself, and this is its use to man. Is it purely a use to his body? Doesnt it depend also on a use to his mind, to the development of his mental faculties, enjoyment, his intelligence and wisdom? And if so, to his relation to his fellow men, and to the protection and development of society and the world? Here you have a higher link in the same chain of uses on which the lower one hangs. And finally, if this is so, what is this all for unless it is the means by which man is being prepared for a use in the spiritual world - a use to heavenly society and eternal use in the Grand Man? And what is that all about unless it is a fulfillment of the universal end and purpose of all creation, a Divine end, which brings it back to God?

In teaching any secular subject there will be a great difference in the mode of that teaching and the way the subject is presented, if in the mind of the teacher this whole chain of uses is seen. Although the child cannot be taught the whole chain of uses - whether we are teaching him just about the external use of a thing and its relation to nature, or whether we are speaking about its use to men or what not - the way it is presented can be such that it will be in harmony or accord, in acknowledgment that that use is nothing unless in back of it lies the whole series of uses all the way up to God. Thus the mind of the child can be led to a deeper reason of why it should be so, and he may enter into that deeper reason when his mind is prepared to see it.

This is the general idea of New Church teaching: not changing the facts; not trying to teach the children that certain things are true that scientific experiment is going to prove to be wrong; not being afraid to let them really see why the things are as they find them in nature for fear that it will disturb their faith; but facing the real truth about what is there and seeking on the basis of Divine Revelation to help them to understand ever more deeply what is there, to see the inner truth contained within it.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 153 So the teaching of secular courses of study will become increasingly a different process, under the development of teachers who have spiritual ideas and spiritual understanding of the unbroken chain of uses that goes all the way back to the Creator. It will be a teaching that will open up a deeper and broader vision in the minds of growing children and young people. It will not be satisfied with a mere external utility as the idea of use. It will not be satisfied with mere scientific and moral values as the end in view. All teaching will have as its object to lead the mind step by step up the ladder from earth to heaven. This is to be done by means of the natural ability to understand, according to the state in which the mind is, not by forcing it beyond where it has been developed, but to recognize that the mind can only see so far as it has been opened. To lay such a foundation on that plane is to give the intended basis for spiritual wisdom and intelligence in adult age.

We believe that this is the mode of teaching that is primarily represented and illustrated in Swedenborgs philosophy. If we study Swedenborgs philosophical works we will see there a remarkable illustration of how this kind of teaching can be done. However, we cant take time to go into that now.



Chapter Five


The question of how to make teaching distinctive is one that has engaged the thought of New Church educators from the beginning of the Academy; and it presents many difficulties to the minds of teachers. There is on the one hand a realization from the teaching of the Writings that the final end of all teaching is to reveal what is spiritual. This is the deeper purpose that lies in the instruction to be given in all secular subjects, as well as in religion. On the other hand there is a clear perception of the fact that these two things are distinct. The teaching of secular subjects is distinct from the teaching of religion, and it is a mistake to make the whole of education nothing but religious instruction. The question therefore resolves itself into this: what is the best way in which Divine Revelation may be used to modify our teaching and make it different, to permeate it throughout, and not just be plastered on tap? There are two ways in which this can be done. The direct way, which is the most obvious and comes at once to the mind of the teacher, and the indirect way.

The first thing our teachers think about when it comes to the matter of putting the New Church into their classes is, What can I find in the Writings that I can use while I am teaching? or How can I speak of these things that are described in the Writings together with the secular subjects that I am teaching? That may be called the direct method of using Divine Revelation. This can be done with good results, and it should be done under certain conditions, observing a certain precaution. The first and most essential precaution is that we shall not confuse secular teaching in the minds of the children with religious instruction. Every once in a while, children, especially of an older age, will complain that their teaching is all religion. They get too much religion! I dont know that it is always just a spontaneous reaction, but a good many elements go to produce that feeling on the part of young people. There is a distinction that should be kept.

The Word is the text book of religious instruction, and it should be taught in a sphere of holiness which preserves a sense of its Divine origin and use. Children do not yet see what is spiritual in it. The whole difference with children is the idea that is the Lords book and therefore is holy, and if that idea be broken dawn or weakened the effect of our religious teaching will be impaired most seriously. In religion, therefore, the Word should be used directly. That is the subject we are studying, and the Word provides material Divinely adapted to every age and remarkably graded throughout the Old Testament, from Genesis to-the Book of Kings. It is, therefore, the basis of our entire course in religion in the earlier years in elementary school. Thus there is a most important difference in the minds of children - that the Word which is holy is to be used for the teaching of religion, - and there is preserved a sense of reverence and holiness that is appropriate to it.

For this reason, the Word should not be used as a text book in secular teaching.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 155 That is one teaching that is done very widely in other schools and colleges. The Word is regarded as a work of literature, as the finest product of mans thought throughout the ages. It is studied with a view to appreciating its literature and historical values, and it is not differentiated as to its spiritual use from other books. In that there is a tremendous loss. Not only should the Word be reserved for religious instruction, but the references from the Word in secular teaching should be made appropriately and with care, not dragged in by the hair or the nape of the neck as is so easily done. If that is done then the real purpose of the teaching is destroyed.

Note the clear teaching of the Writings as to the distinction between these two things: the things of spiritual life and the things of the world or of natural life. (AC 24, 1577:4, 4857:37, 10789; CL 30.) The things of heaven and the things of the world are distinct and they must not be confused. As a matter of fact all intelligent understanding of either depends upon a clear perception of the distinction. As long as we confuse the two and do not discriminate the qualities of each one, we do not under stand either; so that the whole purpose of education is to develop that discrimination. Children do not have it. They confuse the two. They identify spiritual things with the material objects around them. Everything they see is living; they personify it just as the Ancients did in the childhood of the race. It is only gradually that they learn to note the distinctions between what is spiritual and what is natural, and in so doing clearly to see and understand each one. This is one of the things that makes it so important to separate religious and secular teaching as to the modes adopted as appropriate for each one.

The purpose of our New Church education in having both religious and secular education during the week in a common system, instead of having them so separated that: we have secular teaching through the week and religious teaching on Sunday, is by no means to confuse them or to destroy the perception of the distinction between them. It is just as directly taught in the Writings that the things of the world are not only distinct but they are inseparable from the things of heaven. To understand them we must understand the distinctions and at the same time understand their inseparable relation. The things of heaven are as the living soul, and the things of the world are as the tangible body, and unless we see this relation of soul and body between what is spiritual and what is natural, we do not understand either. So we must bee the distinction, and at the same time we must see the relation. That is our problem in New Church education: to bring these two together in such a way as to effect both those ends.

We do it by separating our religious instruction from our secular teaching, and at the same time impressing in every way upon the child the importance of their being brought together. In religious instruction we are focusing the attention and thought upon the Word, upon Divine Revelation, upon the knowledge of spiritual things concerning God and heaven and the life after death and the mode of mans regeneration. That is the subject we are studying, and there is where the mind is focused during religious instruction. But the purpose in focusing the mind there is to show why these spiritual things are the soul, the inner spirit, the cause and the final use of everything in nature, and therefore we use the things of nature by way of illustrating truth.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 156 In secular studies, on the other hand, we focus the attention upon worldly things, upon the facts concerning those worldly things, seeking to understand them as to their relation to one another and thus their use, which is the same as saying we are studying how they serve and minister to what is spiritual. So the difference is one of emphasis, one of focus, but the final end in both cases is to show that these two distinct things are inseparably united - related. With this in view, it is useful from time to time, to use illustrations from the realm of the Word, or Revelation, in connection with secular teaching, but this, as we pointed out, should be done in a natural way.

Again, we have to realize in teaching religion that the statements of doctrine, the facts cited in the language of the Word, of Revelation, these are not in themselves spiritual. They are just knowledges about things, knowledges about what is spiritual perhaps, but since the children dont know what spiritual is, dont really distinguish it from what is natural, then although we are telling them about it, they will not have a spiritual idea or understanding of it. Divine Revelation is but the specialized form adapted to contain and transmit what is spiritual to mans mind - words and ideas quite similar to those used in all thinking and communication of natural things. What is spiritual lies within. It depends not on the words, but on their order and arrangement, the ideas that are suggested, and therefore the spiritual resides in the understanding of these words. We may have a natural understanding of them or we may have a spiritual understanding of them and at first, children all have a natural understanding of them. Our purpose is not to deny this and insist that we are giving them spiritual ideas, nor is it to insist that they must get spiritual ideas before their minds are ready for it. The purpose of our teaching is to lead them gradually, step by step, to see and understand what spiritual things really are, and then gradually to understand the inner content of what we are teaching.

It is said that the letter killeth but the spirit giveth life. The Lord said to His disciples: My words are spirit and they are life. He did not mean His words as they were understood by the multitude of simple people who thought purely naturally, who came to hear Him because they had received the leaves and the fishes and wanted same more. He did not mean that that was the spirit and life. He meant that contained in what He taught was the seed of all spiritual understanding. And so it is with the Word. Children merely receive the teaching as we give it, as a formula or a statement that is stared in their memory, associated with a sense of holiness, of reverence and innocent acceptance of it as truth, but without a spiritual understanding of what it means. We should not make a mistake that they, themselves, make: of supposing that because they can repeat the formula they have grown wise in spiritual ideas of the Church. When they first begin to know there is an internal sense in the Word, they can take anything we happen to be studying at that time, and say very quickly that it means good and truth. They know that. But what good and truth are - that is something else. They get the idea that they have arrived at the level of spiritual intelligence and under standing and wisdom when they have mastered that beginning, and it is a gradual process to make them realize that they have not yet begun to see what the real internal meaning of the Word is.

Again, let us note that in speaking about the Word and the Writings in our secular teaching, we must be careful to use illustrations that are in accord with the states and capacities of the pupil, and are natural to the situation.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 157 If we try to teach them abstract doctrine (as has been done when they grasp at the idea that spiritual things are good and truth) or if we take my statement of Doctrine directly out of the Writings in its rational form and impart it to them - if we do this too early before the mind is prepared for it - we but give a grotesque and artificial idea, if any, that will not be adapted to prepare their minds to receive spiritual truth. Just to illustrate that in the extreme, suppose instead of reading the Word and telling the simple stories of the Word in the kindergarten and the first grade, we read to them the True Christian Religion. It would not have any basis of inspiring the foundations of religion or spiritual thought at all. That is an extreme, but we can easily do that to a lesser degree without realizing it, and call it New Church education, you know. Again, if whenever a child gets interested in a subject and wants to know more about something we are telling him, we at once think we have to take him off the track and quote something from the Writings, it destroys all his interest. If we do that we are not making New Church education out of our teaching. And let me point out again that we can easily fall into that error without realizing it, thinking we are adapting our teaching to the Church.

There are four modes far the direct use of Revelation, and we would speak of each one of them separately, in order to give more specific ideas as to how this may be done or may not be done effectively. First, what use can we make of the science of correspondences, that remarkable science in the Writings that comes down from very ancient times, that is the science of the relation between spiritual and natural things? How far can we teach correspondences in connection with secular subjects, or how far should we do so? Second, what use can we make of doctrine as such, and how should it be brought into our secular teaching? Third, in what way may we make effective use of the Memorable Relations of the Writings, illustrating the very laws of the other world and making the other world more real to children? That we can use these in religious instruction is, of course, clear, but what use can we make of them in connection with secular teaching? And, fourth, what: use can we make of the Letter of the Word in secular teaching and still preserve the sense of holiness, not destroy the distinction between religious teaching and secular teaching? We propose to speak of each one of these in turn after further consideration of the indirect use of Revelation.



Chapter Six

The indirect use of Revelation is the real means by which education becomes distinctive, rather than by the direct use of Revelation. This latter has its place, its important use, but by itself it will not make New Church education. Never! The indirect use of Revelation is the real basis of distinct teaching. By the indirect use of it we mean, not teaching the Writings, but teaching from the Writings. We mean teaching from the philosophy of life and the philosophy of subject matter that we, ourselves, have derived from the Writings and which has been built up in the Church by study of the Writings. We mean that the teacher, having come to see and be inspired by the vision now given of the relation between the external things she is teaching and the internal things of spiritual life, will teach in such a way that gradually that vision may open up to the child as his mind becomes prepared, so that it will come to the child as his own discovery.

Now in this kind of teaching there is a limitless field of development. In every subject there is a limitless field of development. It involves the mastery of the subject on the part of the teacher in its true relation to a genuinely religious life. It involves a spiritual point of view with reference to life in general and to that subject in particular. Therefore it leads to the development of the philosophy of subject matter in every part of the curriculum - the philosophy of subject matter whereby the material to be used in teaching may be so ordered as to illustrate and confirm spiritual truth.

It is the right application of that same Law of ordering and presentation that is wrongly used in what we have came to call propaganda. Propaganda implies that facts are distorted in order to give a pre-determined point of view. Facts are distorted, selected and left out, in such a way that the whole picture will not be seen, but a certain mental idea will be built up by careful presentation. That is used most effectively in all education. We see how tremendously effective it is in what has been accomplished in a single generation in Germany, in Italy, in Russia, Japan (lecture given May 12, 1942) where the point of view of a whole generation of young people has been molded according to the image dictated from the government. That is propaganda teaching and it is a terrible travesty on education, but its power comes from the fact that it is utilizing a true law - the only law by which teaching can be given.

All our teaching must be a selection of material and an ordering of it with some idea in view. We cant teach otherwise but the great difference lies in our philosophy. What is it that we want to impart? What is it that we want our selection and ordering to imply to our children? In the New Church what we call philosophy of subject matter and the philosophy of life consists in the ordering of material from the fundamental desire that our childrens minds shall he disposed toward the whole picture. We are not to distort the facts, not to remove some facts and hide them from our children so that their minds wont be distracted from what we want them to see.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 159 But we seek to prepare them to see the whole picture from the center of God and religion, not from the center of self. That is the difference.

And let us point out, no distortion of fact is needed, because all the facts of nature, all the facts of every subject that we can put into the curriculum, point back to the Creator. And the real interpretation of them, the real understanding of them, is possible only when we approach them from the standpoint of the Creator as their Divine origin. So far as this can be done, so far as we can order our teaching from this philosophy of life, there will be insight on the part of the teacher into the deeper implications of his subject matter. From this the whole conception of the subject will derive its form and color, becoming distinctly different. It will produce a different effect on the minds of children.

This is exactly what is being done in an opposite direction by modern education everywhere. The philosophy of life which is directly contrary to the idea that we must trace everything back to its source from the Divine, is what molds and directs the selection, the ordering of the material in all the text books, in all the educational material that we find in the modern world. The whole idea of modern education is built up on the denial of that truth. That then is the reason why adopting a philosophy of life that is based on a real acknowledgment of the truth is what will produce a distinct New Church education.

All that is involved in the indirect use of Revelation is not yet fully realized. It is to many people very intangible, and only gradually will a full realization of it arise. The central idea had its origin in the early Academy as an ideal. It was involved in the choice of the name Academy in all the classical connotation of that word, and it was involved also in what was called the University idea. That a group of people, very few in numbers, should establish a theological school and a kindergarten with a few pupils, and have the temerity to talk about it: as a University, was a most astonishing thing. What they referred to was not simply the idea that in the long distant future they saw that out of that beginning might develop a large institution providing courses in every branch of human knowledge to thousands of students. That was not the main reason for speaking of it as a University. It was because of the attitude of the faculty that the essential idea, was a search for truth, a search for truth universally in every field of knowledge, and by truth they meant the truth of the New Church - not merely scientific accuracy, but truth.

The spirit that animated the Academy was that the faculty should be made up of men and women of learning, men and women in search of truth. They saw such a vision of the new possibilities open to them through the Revelation given in the Writings, and this vision was not merely a distant ideal. It was something immediately within their grasp. They saw it with an enthusiasm and spirit altogether out of proportion to the actual accomplishments that were possible within that day. However, that spirit and that enthusiasm are what has produced the results that we now enjoy. The early Academicians were not satisfied merely to state an ideal and await an indefinite future for the ideal to be realized. They set out to realize it in as large a measure as was humanly possible in their day, and they did that with courage and with persistence that got results.



Some of the first attempts had to do, nonetheless, to a large extent, with the direct use of Revelation. Aside from a few - a very few - the idea of the indirect use was not clearly seen, although it was involved in the whole spirit of the moment. But the direct use of Revelation, insofar as it outstripped the indirect use, had disappointing results. And as a result of that there followed a reaction. Questions and doubts arose as to whether after all, these hopes of the early Academy could be realized; doubts as to whether we were not making too much of distinctive teaching; whether we werent trying to enforce unnaturally the teaching of religion. Should we not after all put our main effort into improving the external efficiency of our teaching, along lines such as we found in the world around us, for they seemed to be making great strides along that path.

That was a natural reaction, almost inevitable under those circumstances, but it arose, not from anything wrong with the early Academy ideal, but from a too rapid and, in certain instances, injudicious application of that ideal. The truth is that unless we are constantly developing the indirect use of Revelation, our hopes to establish a truly distinctive system will fail. But in this indirect application there is a limitless field of development in every subject that comes before the educators. There is a limitless field in our understanding of the human mind, our understanding of educational psychology, in the development of appropriate methods and modes, of presentation, and of pedagogy. And there is a limitless field in the interpretation of every science that we can present. There is a limitless field in the development of philosophy, especially Swedenborgs philosophy, in its relation to all human thinking. And finally there is a limitless field in the development of the Doctrine given in the Writings.

The field is so large, and at the present time we are so ill prepared to enter very deeply into it, that progress is bound to be slow. Every teacher is not, and cannot be, a creative philosopher. Creative philosophers are born and they are raised up in the Providence of the Lord from time to time and that special work is not within the field of every teacher. Everyone is not capable of appraising and recognizing the raw material either in the field of science or in the field of Doctrine from the Writings. Special forms of mind are necessary to do that, and for that reason noticeable advance, marked steps of progress will be made only from time to time, only as men are raised up with special ability for that work. That has been our history in the past, and I have no about it will continue to be so in the future.

When teachers feel that that is what is required of them, they get discouraged, but we need to remember that these larger accomplishments are not brought about by men unsupported. There must be many who are striving in the field, and making contributions toward it, of a less noticeable size, in order that there may be the possibility of an advancing growth. That is true in all scientific development. The great discoveries of science are made by men who become famous as a result of them, but every one of those men knows that hundreds of investigators have preceded him, and have added this and that, all of which have made it possible for him to attain the results. Just take an extreme example to illustrate what I mean.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 161 Had an Edison lived in the era before Christ, he would not have made the discoveries that he made. He might have had the same qualifications. He would not have had the background of knowledge that thousands of men had gathered with slow and patient labor that made it possible for him to make those discoveries. There is no difference in the New Church! We dont get away from all the need and requirements of patient labor and slow development by hard work because we have a Divine Revelation that guides us with reference to the spiritual significance of what we are studying. So for this reason, every teacher needs to see the vision; needs to see what the goal is we are striving for; needs to be fired with the ambition to make some contribution toward that goal with whatever abilities he or she may possess as a result of Divine Endowment and heredity.

Nothing comes to us miraculously, however. What we are talking about as a New Church education involves a tremendous change in the whole fabric of human life and thought -- a tremendous change! It means a tremendous change in the whole attitude of people toward life and in the way that attitude leads them to react - the way they apply it. It means the building of a new morality, new ethics, a new civilization. Nothing less than that. That is not going to come miraculously. It is not going to come suddenly. It is going to come only in the measure and degree that men see the vision and strive for it. Nothing has been given to us but the vision in the Writings. It: has not been worked out for us. All the answers havent been given. They are left for men to discover by the same means that they discover anything: to a considerable extent by trial and error, by patient experiment, over and over again. And so there must be the ideal of individual study and individual experiment as part of the teaching function in the New Church. There must be the realization that it is not enough to take care of the children that are given to us, although that is our most immediate duty. It is not enough to teach from day to day and feel that we have accomplished our function. We must be looking ahead. We must be building. We must be preparing so that our generation shall have made some contribution, taken same step on which the next generation can go further in the matter of developing distinctive New Church teaching. This we will not do unless we are assuming some measure of responsibility for it individually and collectively, in addition to our every-day routine of teaching.

Much can be done in this direction by individual investigation - a gathering, and especially appraising, of the scientific knowledge that exists in our day in any field in which we are interested. Not to be satisfied to come to certain conclusions from the Writings on the basis of what we suppose to be the facts, but be highly ambitious to base our conclusions on all the facts that are available, all the real facts so far as we can discover them. That means we wont sit in a tight little corner of our own and use the few things we have learned when we went to school and try to interpret them on the basis of what we have discovered in the Writings. Rather we will be wide-awake, looking in all directions to find out what has been discovered and that wasnt taught when we went to school, or what have been the developments since we went to school, so that we may make a better interpretation as to how the Writings are to be applied. The value and use of our scientific age to the New Church is just that.

Men do not have a spiritual point of view.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 162 They do not have the outlook that enables them to see the deeper implications in these things they discover, but they are in Providence inspired to discover them, and to regard with meticulous care whether they are accurate or not. There never was an age in the whole history of the world when there was such an accumulation of facts gathered with such regard to accuracy. Now I say that is essential to New Church thinking, as well as to non-religious scientific thinking. If we are basing our conclusions from the Writings on partial facts, or things that are mistaken, our conclusions are going to be wrong, no matter how true the principles from which we are thinking. And so I believe that New Church teachers should be filled with what is called the scientific ideal in the true sense.

My criticism of the scientific attitude is not the utter devotion to accuracy, but its insistence upon confining our thought to the sensual plane, an unwillingness to recognize and acknowledge spiritual things. That is what is wrong with it. And so all our teachers should have the ambition continually to learn, an attitude of continually learning what the world has to give. This was true, markedly true, of the founders of the Academy. They were men of education, of university training, men who had a great regard for knowledge in every field, and their standard should not be lowered.

Now this is true, but this by itself is not enough. We need not only individual studies, but group studies and group experiments. To a large extent, experiments have to be made many times. They have to he made with reference to many similar situations in order to correct the errors of observation that inevitably creep in with individual experiments. Now with reference to that, of course, we cannot undertake very much because we are so small; we have so few opportunities. We must rely to a considerable extent on the more accurate findings of the scientific investigators of the world who have the advantage in numbers and opportunities to make numerous experiments.

We need to rely on their findings, but by no means uncritically, because a great many of their findings are not uninfluenced by preconceived ideas. We must be careful to sift the real facts in their findings from the conclusions that have been inspired by their preconceived ideas. That is not so easy as it seems, because unconsciously the most devoted scientific thinker, when he presents his conclusions, presents them from a standpoint of what he thinks it ought to show - he cant help it - and unless we are pretty careful we will say he proves so and so. He proved it because he has all the facts there, but those facts prove the conclusions? Lets investigate it before we accept it with assurance. However, to a large extent we must accept the findings of scientific investigators, and as I say, it is my belief that that is the great use of our scientific age. That is the great purpose through which it is being led and guided in Divine Providence. Let us not allow our minds to be prejudiced against facts, because of our realization that to so great an extent in our days, these facts are twisted and turned to seem to mean something else.

Now we must depend upon the findings of scientific investigators to a large extent, but we also must make group experiments of our own, not only to check our individual findings, but also to investigate fields that no one else is investigating, as with reference to our individual findings.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 163 The teacher in a specific field of study - science, history, mathematics - sets to work to gather facts and study the philosophy of the subject and to align what is found to what he can see in the teachings of the Writings. His findings will be limited by the fact that he has approached the thing from one particular angle, and yet the findings in the last analysis must be such as to integrate with all human knowledge. Unless we realize that fact, we will be very apt to mistake our own findings for something that is bound to be true because we see it. I see it - therefore it is true. What I see may be true, but it may not be the whole truth by any matter or means, and it may need to be modified by something someone else sees. And if we become so enamored with what we see as the whole truth that we fail to integrate that knowledge with what other, just as sincere, seekers of truth see from another point of view, we inevitably fail to reach the goal. So we need not only individual studies, but we need group studies which bring our findings into touch with what others are finding. This not with an idea merely of defending what I have found from what somebody else may see, but with a view to seeing whether what I have found is after all by no means the whole truth. What other people have found is very important as a means of modifying what I have found. With that attitude, group studies can be of tremendous value in developing our findings toward the truth - the whole truth.

On the other hand it is also true that with all the investigations that are going on in the world by scientific thinkers, there are many important investigations that nobody is making, because nobody is interested in them. Everybody is investigating things from the standpoint of ends that are objective, from the standpoint of things that are popular, in the world at the present time - what will contribute to the elimination of disease, to the betterment of social conditions, to the increased speed and comfort of travel, to satisfying the physical desires of modern society. This is what is prompting all the investigations that are being made: practical applications to present needs. What is the demand? That is what stimulates people to investigations.

How true that is, is most evident when a war comes along and stimulates a whole lot of investigations that were not stimulated before. I was reading only yesterday (lecture given May 14, 1942) about the great number of investigations that had been made over a period of years which had been sacrificed because they were not economical. They would interfer with certain established ways we were following at the time. They would put a lot of businesses out of joint if they were part in. Along comes a war. That question is out! We must have everything that we can possibly find that will do the job. The result is that these investigations have been given a green light to go ahead. A lot of astonishing things are being accomplished, in that men have discovered things that never were discovered before, and this because men have now been given the incentive to go ahead.

Well now so far as the New Church is concerned, there are many things to confirm. What is said in the Writings and in Swedenborgs philosophical works need investigation. Nobody is looking into them because it is not one of those things for which there will be great dividends paid. It is not the kind of thing that the great majority of scientific thinkers are interested in.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 164 They are not interested in the philosophy of things, in spiritual causes, not interested in seeing how spiritual forces work in nature. They are thinking: How can we use the things of nature to accomplish what we want? So their investigations all go in that direction. In the field of physiology, what is said in the Writings about the human body, the influx and operation of spiritual forces from the mind into the human body - these things are not being investigated, because everybody is investigating the body to find out how to preserve its health, how to meet certain practical needs. Philosophy has no appeal. I could mention a dozen things off-hand that our schools have been unable to find out from the best scholars in the world, unable to find out by writing to ask the most learned men in the whole world about it. They dont know. Nobody has looked into it, in spite of all the process that has been made.

Now I say there are certain things alone; that line on which we must do our own investigating if it is going to be done. We have to do it slowly, a little at a time. We have to inspire our scientific men to do a little of this experimenting here and there. And we ourselves, as teachers, need to make certain experiments right in the field of education that nobody else is making today, in order to find out how certain things that are taught in the Writings are actually to be applied. We can use all the investigations that are being made, use them affirmatively, use them after critical analysis, selection and adaptation to our special needs and objectives. But in addition to all that, we will have to make some of our own. All this has to be done by the indirect use of our Revelation. It has to be done by thinking from our Revelation all the tine we are doing this studying and investigating. It has to be done by establishing certain general principles in our mind from the Writings, and then inquiring what the relation of these principles is to the actual facts as we find them in whatever field we are in. How can we so present the facts in that field to help growing children so that when they become adult, they will be able to think more easily along such lines, to see more easily how these spiritual things do apply to the actual facts?

Now I believe that is the highest use of the teaching profession in the New Church. I believe that it is indispensable to see that vision and to strive for that goal if a distinct system of New Church education is, in the last analysis, to be achieved. Merely teaching and applying Revelation directly, using Correspondences here, quotations from the Word there, Memorable Relations there, will by no means do it. It is a far more inclusive, far more subtle effect that is required. And so while we must meet the routine needs of our classroom day by day, month by month, year by year, and while we must conscientiously care for the children that are entrusted to us in regard to their practical education, we must do more as New Church teachers.

We have been endeavoring for years to stimulate this kind of approach to education in our schools, and we believe that gradually, in time, the trend in that direction will bear a rich harvest. I know that at the present time there are many who will become discouraged about it, and some who do not see what it is all about, and wonder why we will spend so much time talking about that, when there are so many other things to be taken care of. But I believe, nonetheless, that that in the long run is the most practical of all things. For what is more practical than to see how what we are doing at the moment can contribute to something permanent, rather than something that disappears with tomorrows sun?


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 165 Unless we are building on a foundation that will last, of what use is it? What use is it if we are doing something day by day that in another generation will be forgotten? To my mind it is permanent building on a firm foundation which gives the only practical outlook for our New Church education.



Section Five                     THE DIRECT USE OF REVELATION
Chapter One


We want to speak now about correspondences and the use that can be made of them as a means of leading our teaching to spiritual ideas when speaking of natural things. Correspondence is something that often attracts people in regard to the teaching of the Writings. It appeals to them, and not unusually, people when first acquainted with the Writings, become very enthusiastic about correspondences, not realizing how complicated, how complex, the science of correspondences is. Their first attempts to use it do not lead to the best results, and we are apt to make the same mistakes in teaching in our efforts to use correspondences; yet the use of them is very important. Not only is it something that we can use, but correspondence is something, that we cannot avoid using. We use it all the time, in our teaching, consciously and unconsciously, for correspondence is the relation between natural and spiritual things. It is the relation between the spiritual world as a world of causes and a natural world as a world of effects.

The human mind, as we have seen throughout our course, lives in both worlds. It is being continually affected by both worlds. We have no sensation that does not include an impulse from without or from the natural world and an impulse from within or from the spiritual world. The mind is affected, therefore, simultaneously by both these things. The effect from without is obvious. It is what we see or sense in any way with our bodily senses. Because we live in a world that is common to others around us, that which comes from without is felt by all, or seen by all, but what comes from within is individual, and comes from the spiritual world. It is individual and not shared necessarily by those around us. All in the same room may see the same objects, but their inner feelings about those objects may be altogether different because of the different state or associations in the spiritual world. So the things that come from without we have in common. The things that come from within are individual, and yet we wish to share them with others. The things we feel within ourselves we wish to share with others. And this is the reason why we try to explain and describe the things we feel by means of what we see.

We try to describe or explain to others, by things we have in common, the things that we feel within ourselves that are individual. So correspondence appears in all human language. Words are attempts to express our feelings, and this always on the basis of things we have in common, things we both see and feel in the world around us. Therefore we find in the study of language a very rich field for illustrating correspondences - what they are. If we study language we find that all expressions are derived from root meanings, and the root meanings of words go back to more and more primitive language, where they had their origin in objects seen and in physical actions - concrete things. Objects and physical actions could be seen and from those roots have been derived all the abstract ideas that later came to be associated with the derivatives from those roots. There are innumerable examples of that - how abstract ideas have been derived from concrete root meanings of words.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 167 For instance, the word haughty, which describes the state of mind and inner feeling of pride, in the Hebrew language (primitive tongue) is derived from a root meaning to be high, to be seen above. Again, in the same language, the word for give which expresses a human feeling toward another of forgiving something that they have done against us, gives us the word for give. It comes from a root meaning to cover, to hide, to pass over, to make light of - all associated with the idea for give. So we see human speech is an effort, by means of things that we actually see and feel in the material world around us, to explain the things we feel within us that come from the other world and share them with others.

All poetry is based on correspondence in this way. Poetic expressions, similes, comparisons, metaphors - all go to make up poetic speech, for all are based on correspondence. To a large extent we think of similes, comparisons and metaphors as the comparison of one natural thing with another, comparing one kind of object as to some quality of it with another, as for instance when we speak of a mountain like a sugar loaf - just comparing the shape of the mountain to a sugar loaf. And so when we speak about a ship that plows the sea we are comparing the similarity of appearance of a ship going through the water to a plow going through the ground - two natural things. We say that a man has an eye like an eagles when he is keen sighted because an eagle is noted for his keen and distinct sight. So here we have used in poetry all the time similarity of appearance - association of ideas purely on the sensual plane, and yet that doesnt make poetry. The appeal of poetry is always in its human associations. It has to have a comparison of some natural thing to something that we feel within us. One may have a rich array of all the external imaginative comparisons - which may be rhythmical and poetic, but they will lack the essence of poetic appeal unless back of that we see same reference to human feelings.

Therefore the real essence of poetic expression is correspondence - the relation between the things in this world and the things of the other world. And that was the universal mode of speech in ancient times, where mens interests and ideas were all centered in spiritual things. They spoke by correspondences, and that form of speech has been preserved for us most fully, most perfectly, in the Sacred Scriptures. We find it in all the poetry of the Old Testament, and we find it in all the parables of the New Testament - comparison of natural and spiritual things, as to certain similarities, as when we say that God is a rock, a fortress, a high tower, meaning something immovable, strong, protective. Many, many illustrations might be given. And the Lord in speaking to His disciples used such correspondences all the time, as when He said, Every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. It is obvious that He wasnt speaking there of the light of the sun, but the knowledge and understanding of others. Again, when the Lord said, I sent you to reap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours, He wasnt speaking of reaping with a scythe. He was speaking of gathering the results of their efforts and labors, whatever they might be. And when He said, I am the door of the sheep, comparing a natural thing like a door, which is a way of entrance, to a spiritual thing which also is a way of entrance, but a spiritual way of entrance.

Now, as I say, this was the common mode of speech in ancient times.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 168 Men had not learned to speak scientifically. They didnt even conceive of such a thing. When I say speak scientifically, I mean speak with a definite attempt to rule out all our inner feelings and limit the thought to what canes from without. That is what scientific expression attempts to do, and from that we get scientific accuracy. We get a definition, a complete definition of the factual content of whatever we are talking about, but we squeeze out of it very carefully anything that might modify or invalidate that fact. Anything that comes from within, any feeling that we might have about it, has to be eliminated. Now I say there was no idea of that in ancient times. They didnt care about that. Facts had nothing to do with human life; they were merely dead things in the world around them which had no interest for them. And so we find throughout the Sacred Scripture that external things are used very carelessly from the standpoint of science. They are not at all accurate in a scientific sense. We find numbers used in connection with armies, fantastic numbers, because they did not care whether they counted them right or not, but their expression involved what they felt about it, what tremendous armies they were. Scientific fact did not matter. They wanted their people to know they had a tremendous army - millions, if you like. (Today we get pretty close to that on the plane of finances - a little bit like the ancient armies.)

But if we want to interpret the Scriptures right, even in a literal sense, we need to understand the difference in the way they used these things and the way they thought about them. It is quite a mistake for us to think that they had to be talking scientifically, and that therefore we must interpret them according to the scientific ideas of today, if we are going to understand them aright. That is all a mistake, and that is not what was intended. So some say, Is the Scripture true? Of course it was true - true to them, true to their world and their whole mode of thinking. It would not be true if we try to transpose it to our world and impress our limitations on it.

So we find all through the Word a preservation - a carrying over to us of the way the ancients spoke all of the time. That was their common mode of expression. It wasnt some special thing they used for poetry or to express Divine Revelation. It was their common mode of speech, and because their minds were turned to spiritual things what they wanted most of all was to understand these feelings that came from within, from the spiritual world. A good deal of this may be understood even with our English Translation because of the fact that the King James Version goes back a long way. It goes back to a period quite before the modern purely scientific mode of thinking. That is a very modern thing - scientific thinking. Even when the King James Version was created, men did not think or speak scientifically, as we do now. Our language, the English language, is full of correspondences, just as well as the Hebrew and other more ancient tongues. Only progressively and recently have we come to interpret terms with scientific accuracy.

Now it is not only in language that we find correspondences. It is in all human actions, human customs, modes of life, civil and moral attitudes. All of them have correspondences and express correspondences. Our civil and moral customs all have their roots in very ancient times when men not only tried to express their inner feelings by their words, but also by their acts. What they did always had a meaning to them; it was not just an action.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 169 It was meant to express something, and their whole emphasis was on what it was meant to express.

Therefore very simple actions came to have profound meaning and significance for them, and that meaning or significance has come dawn to us in one way or another. We read, for instance, of the tremendous importance that was laid by ancient peoples on eating together, how it represented to them a bond of friendship to eat together. It was not just the physical fact that they ate together. It was what that implied with reference to their feelings toward one another. Their sharing physical food meant to them the right way of sharing spiritual affections, and so eating together was regarded as a bond of friendship. Such a thing as holding up a hand as testifying to an oath is very ancient in origin. This too had its origin in correspondences, the hand representing all the power of will, so here is something that would be observed with the full power of will.

Another very ancient custom full of meaning was the idea of bringing a present as a sign of allegiance to a king or a great man, or a prophet. Here at once you have an external act that is conveying the idea of an inner feeling, sharing with another, giving testimony to another of an inner feeling, and that is correspondence - the relation of what is natural to what is spiritual. As a matter of fact we are told in the Writings that no idea of what is spiritual or of spiritual life can be imparted except on the basis. of civil and moral life. The only means by which we can express our inner feelings is by our actions, and as the actions have meaning, we call them moral.

We also find correspondence universally throughout nature in forms, especially organic forms. All organic forms are correspondences, and we are apt to think of the correspondence having to do with the form, but primarily the correspondence has to do with the use of the thing. A use is always spiritual. A use exists first, and it produces the organ or the organic form, the Writings tell us. Nothing could be created in the way of an organic form if there were not a use foreseen and provided by the Lord. So the use is really first, although it appears as if the organ is created first and then the use proceeds from that. As examples: the use of the eye is to see - the appearance is that we have to have an eye first and then we see; and the use of the ear is to hear - we have to have an ear first before we hear, but just a moments reflection would show that somebody had to know what kind of organ we would need in order to hear before that organ could be created. The use was there before the organ was there, and the organ was created to fill that use.

Now that is true universally of everything, and so correspondence is between the uses of things which are all spiritual - all have their origin in the Divine Providence, Divine Love, the Divine end of creation, the Divine foresight of what will serve the end of creation - and the organic forms of nature, and especially of the human body which is the highest of all and which includes all the forms of nature. They are all included in the human body and that is the reason why so much is said in the Writings about the correspondences of the human body. It is the most perfect illustration we can have of correspondences. Yet we have to be careful in using it, because we can easily give mistaken and fantastic ideas by merely referring to some external organ and saying this corresponds to so and so without any perception of the use, or the reason why.



That is the danger in trying to teach correspondences categorically to children. We tell them so and so corresponds to so and so and they accept and believe it as children, but they wont see in the least degree why it should be so. And if they dont see why, when they grow older they will wander about it. It may look kind of funny. We have all passed through that stage, and have to go back to a point where we can see the basis of that correspondence in order that it may become real to us and not just a fantastic idea. So we need to be careful in teaching about correspondences that we do not just fill the minds of our children with categorical statements of correspondences and think that we have taught them what correspondences are. We havent!

Also we have to remember that correspondences are very living things. They are highly complex. They are based, not on fixed forms, but on qualities. They are only partial and may appear more fully at one time than another, and therefore correspondences depend upon the occasion - the source or context in which a thing is used. We find it very confusing because the Writings, in explaining the correspondences of the Word, speak of a thing as having one correspondence in one passage and quite a different correspondence in another passage, so unless we know what they are referring to, it is very confusing. The fact is that correspondence is always based on some quality of the thing that is most prominently referred to at the tire, and the same thing can possess various qualities. Animals can be said to have different correspondences and indeed apposite correspondences in different connections. If a lion is being referred to as a destructive and ravenous beast that slays ruthlessly, he has an evil correspondence. But the same lion spoken of merely as the most powerful of animals may have a good correspondence, may even be used to represent the infinite power of the Lord Himself Who is compared to a lion.

And so with every animal, every form in nature, they can have various and even opposite correspondences according to the qualities that are most prominently referred to at the time. So if we give our children a fixed idea that this thing corresponds to this always, they tend to include the whole of it, and dont understand that that correspondence is based on the way it is used in one particular place, We are just putting in their minds the basis for tremendous confusion, They wont understand until they realize later on how to discriminate. So while it is necessary to use correspondence with children, we must observe caution. Also we must have in our own minds a living idea of what correspondences are, so that we can build up in the minds of our children a living idea, not a fixed and static concept of it that will be quite inadequate.

Correspondence is the greatest of all sciences. It was considered among ancient people as the science of sciences. It will again be so considered by men when they have gotten past the present stage of supposing that the only thing that is worthwhile is what we get after we have squeezed all the correspondence out of a thing. If we get past that adolescent stage of human development, the interest and the importance of the correspondences will be restored.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 171 When men come to realize that the only thing that really matters is what is human in things, their relation to human life, their inner human feelings, then correspondences as a science wilt be revived. And it will be seen universally to apply to all sciences in the world. And the more we understand of the science of correspondences the more vital and more living will be all other sciences, for we will see how they are related to human life. But because it is such a great science, it is a mistake to over-simplify it, merely making a dictionary of correspondences, and then from that dictionary have our children memorize the meaning of certain things, so that they think they have mastered the science of correspondences. It simply doesnt work that way.

Also we need to remember that all that we have said in previous classes, about the need of steps to ascend, applies to correspondences. There must be steps of ascent according to which the mind grows and develops from infancy to adult age. There must be steps of ascent towards the realization of what correspondences truly are. There is a chain of correspondences leading up to the Lord, and man - the mind of man - is the medium of communication. The human mind is created to make that ascent along the ladder of Jacob, from earth to heaven, and that ascent, and be made one step at a time. If we jump from the bottom to the top we dont know what we are talking about; we dont understand; we get only the external expression without knowing what it is all about. The human mind is created for that ascent, and every step is needed for the realization of what correspondences are.

Often our mistake is that we have come to see something of a spiritual nature from our study of the Writings. We want to impart that to children without realizing that we have gone through a series of steps to reach it. The child hasnt, and just to pour that into his mind doesnt give it to him at all. It cant. He has to go through those steps too before it will mean anything to him. Correspondences, if we understand them rightly, are the means by which that ascent can be made. But we must observe the intermediate steps of correspondences and we must lead the child from one to another.

Now there is where the great use of poetry, fable, and folklore in teaching children lies. It provides them with the intermediate steps by means of which at last they can came not only to know, but to understand and appreciate what is meant by correspondences. And without it - supposing we eliminated all that and got purely scientific in our teaching of children and, as far as possible, discarded from our language any idea of comparison - we would have deprived them of any means of knowing, when they grew up, what correspondences are. They would have no way elf knowing what is the relation between the spiritual world and the natural world, or what is the true relation of all the things in the world of human life.




AC 2333:3, 4.        How natural ideas pass over into spiritual ideas. Use of the letter of the Word, and also of poetry. AC 4624, 4653.

AC 2542.              Correspondence concealed in words. Use of the dictionary and of root meanings. Again illustrations from the Word and poetic allusion.

AC 3883.              Correspondence is especially seen in things relating to man. AC 4525.

AC 4044.              Correspondence illustrated in mans mental experience. A chain of correspondences leading to the Lord as the First Cause. AC 5131.

AC 4223.              Correspondences not primarily in forms, but in functions of the body. HH 112; DLW 114.

AC 4366:2              All things of civil life correspond.

AC 6232:3              Correspondences not confined to one thing but very complex, involving thousands of things in the spiritual world.

AC 8812e              Correspondence of all things in the world with things in heaven.

HH 104.              All things in the world -- even those prepared by human industry -- are correspondences.

SS 56.              Dangers of correspondences without Doctrine.



Section Five                     THE DIRECT USE OF REVELATION
Chapter Two


It is important that we have a clear idea of what we mean by correspondences and how they are distinguished from representations and significations. Correspondence is always a relation between a cause and its effect, and true correspondences have to do with a spiritual cause and a natural effect. For this reason all the living organisms of nature are correspondences, because they are produced by life that is spiritual and that ferns a receiving organic vessel that is natural, and the body corresponds then to the soul that produces it. That is the universal idea of correspondence. Not only the organ itself, but everything that it does, every living reaction of the organ, corresponds to that which produces it.

So we have the fact that the expressions of face corresponds to the affections of the mind; expressions of the face or gestures of the body correspond to the affections of the mind that produce them. Again, correspondence is illustrated by the fact that to see and to understand correspond, because truth actually produces light, and I mean by that even the light of the natural sun. And the light of the natural sun with its effect upon the eye and the brain is the foundation or basis of all understanding. So also love corresponds to fire because the origin of fire is love itself. If we analyze fire, we see that it is an intense vibration or activity of minute particles causing incandescence. Scientifically, that is true, but what causes the activity? Little particles dont just move of themselves. They have to be moved, and therefore the cause of the fire, the cause of the natural sun itself, is an influx of life that is love from God. And so we have love corresponding to fire, and we see that in the human body we have not only the heat that comes from the natural sun, but we have the heat that comes from love or affection. So we might go on and multiply examples of correspondence as a relation between a spiritual cause and its natural effect.

Representation, on the other hand, is a picturing by natural things of some spiritual thing, and this picturing may be a correspondence or it may not. Characters in the sacred scripture may represent divine and heavenly things, even though the characters themselves are not good. The whole of drama is the art of representing something other than the actors real character. The visions of the prophets were representations of things to come or of internal truths that were not actual with those who represented them. So we might have a person representing something very different from what he really corresponded to. An evil man, as to all the organs of his mind and their activity, is the correspondence of the evil love that has become dominant, but he may perform an excellent use, and in doing so he may represent what is heavenly and good.

Signification, on the other hand, is the relation of arbitrary symbols established symbols to things that they represent or bring to the mind. Letters, words, any representation signifies something. Numbers are significations.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 174 In the Word, you may have an historic character who has a certain quality, either good or evil, and that character, by what he does or says, may represent something quite other than what his real quality is, and what his name may signify.

Now you find those words - correspond, represent, signify - used in that way in the Writings but not too strictly. Sometimes the term correspondence is used for representation as covering words that include representation and also signification. I think, however, it is true that when the word signify is used in the Writings, it always has reference to the symbol, not to the picturing or the correspondence. It is useful and necessary to have these things clearly distinguished and marked in our own mind, so that in the teaching of children we shall prepare them to understand especially that correspondence is not an arbitrary thing.

Correspondence is not something that we can assign to something or ascribe to it, if it isnt really there. Correspondence is something that comes from creation. It depends upon the real origin and source of the thing we are talking about, and we cant produce it; we cant merely assign it to something. We have to see what it is or is not; whereas signification may be an arbitrary symbol. It may be something that has grown up out of custom, use and association of ideas. Also something may come to represent by arbitrary association as, for instance, the customs and usages that came to derive special meaning out of long habit and usage that have no essential correspondence in themselves. They have just been adapted and become habitual. This is representation or signification, but it cannot be correspondence. Also representation and signification may include poetic imagery and comparison, metaphor and simile, as mentioned. They may be purely natural things and not real correspondences, because they dont represent what is really the cause and the effect but are merely a comparison of two different things, and they may both be natural things.

Yet these comparisons, metaphors, and similes of poetry are the means by which the mind is prepared to perceive true correspondences and spiritual representations. We cant understand a true spiritual representation until we have some idea of what is the spiritual thing that is to be represented. Little children think only of natural things and have no idea of what a spiritual thing is. We can tell them about a correspondence or we can describe to them a representation, but it will only convey to them a natural comparison with some other thing, not a real perception of the spiritual meaning or signification. Yet it is just that way, by means of natural comparisons and metaphors, that the mind is prepared to see spiritual things in adult age. They are steps leading to the perception of correspondences, and it is just for the establishment of these steps that man is born into infancy, and grows through infancy and childhood into adult age. That is the purpose of it, for without receiving in his mind those intermediate steps, there could be no understanding and perception of spiritual things.

So it is a mistake for us to try to teach correspondences with the idea that children are going to get spiritual instruction out of it. They dont. On the other hand, it is very important that we should teach and use the intermediate steps that lead to correspondence, and that we should use them intelligently, which we can only do if we realize what spiritual correspondences and representations are and how these intermediate steps will lead to them.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 175 We can see, as we understand this subject, how imaginative pictures prepare the mind to clothe spiritual truth. In later life we can see a use for poetry, folk-lore, and fable, that otherwise is not understood. The purely scientific attitude would lead to a disparagement of these imaginative things on the ground that the only things of real value are those that are factually true, and that after all, when we tell children stories and fables, we are telling them something that isnt true, something that we will have to modify and change later in life, that they will have to come to realize are not true. This is a great mistake. If we understand what the purpose of these things is, we can see that we are not telling the children things are not true. We are telling them the only truth that they are capable of understanding. If we try to tell them scientific facts that are beyond their age we wont be telling them the truth either; we will just be giving them a fantastic idea.

If we have in mind preparing children to see spiritual truth in adult age, then we can use imaginative things far more effectively and intelligently than we can otherwise. Also we need to know what the intermediate steps and stages are which lead to a perception of spiritual truth and are appropriate to each age. And in that we find much help in the teaching of the Writings. There are steps appropriate to each age, and this because every age is but a Divinely ordained means by which that step shall be provided. That is what the age is, and in providing for that age we are merely seeking to provide the material that is necessary to build that step of ascent from purely sensual knowledge to spiritual understanding.

Now if we look at it that way, we see that the idea of teaching correspondences is a very different thing from merely getting a dictionary of correspondences and Listing a few words of what they correspond to and getting our children to memorize those in class. That doesnt do it. We must understand what these correspondences and representations are, and we must understand what the purpose is of learning that uses external imaginative pictures, images, metaphors, similes, and what it is doing for the mind, and then we must use all those things intelligently. That is the proper use of correspondence in teaching.

Not that it is not right for us to teach children categorically certain correspondences. It is all right to tell them that water corresponds to truth, and that fire corresponds to love, mountains correspond to love to the Lord, and hills to charity toward the neighbor. You can tell them all that, and it will do to them just one thing. It will acquaint them and make them familiar with the fact that there are correspondences. They will, know that as a matter of fact. It is something they will accept without question on the authority of their teacher. That is all. They wont understand those correspondences. They will know them, it is true, because they have been taught them, but they wont understand them. Unless we have done the other thing, those statements of correspondence will come to seem fantastic or arbitrary or unreal to them later. They will come to question and doubt them, but if their mind has been prepared on the indirect use of correspondences to which we referred, then as they grow older they will came into a perception and understanding of what we mean by these things that they merely accepted on faith, or categorically, in their childhood.



Children first take for granted that they know the whole thing when they have learned a few correspondences - water, fire, house - they will tell you all about them. They know the whole internal sense of the Word. They have to realize later that very much more is involved than appears on the surface. Now not only this misapprehension, but also great harm can come from teaching correspondences and representations indiscriminately, or without giving a real understanding. The imagination of men is very active and very ingenious, and it isnt very hard for us to begin inventing representations and correspondences of our own as soon as we have become a little familiar with what is meant, and that is what happens. The result is that you find very fantastic and false conclusions drawn from correspondences if they are not rightly used. Of this the Writings give us very definite warning. They tell us that no one can attain to a perception of the truth by the use of correspondences unless his mind is guided by the Doctrine of Genuine Truth and that leads us to a consideration of the next subject - doctrine.



Section Five                     THE DIRECT USE OF REVELATION
Chapter Three                     

What is this doctrine of genuine truth that is the means of keeping us straight in our use of correspondences, so that we not go off at a tangent and build up imaginary conclusions from them that are contrary to truth? Doctrine in its origin is the light of heaven, spiritual light revealing spiritual objects or truths to the mind. That light is invisible to children until the internal degrees of the mind are open, until the spiritual mind that is the eye which sees that light has been formed and opened. And that doesnt happen until after the period of growth has taken place, and therefore doctrine also cannot be taught to children. That is, if by learning, we mean that they shall perceive truth in spiritual light. But again there are intermediate steps appropriate to every age of a growing child which are the means of introducing the mind to doctrine. They are the means of forming or building the mind that is to see Doctrine; to see in spiritual light.

Spiritual light falls also upon natural objects, and when the mind of man has been opened to see it, that spiritual light shines through these natural objects. This is especially the case in the Word where natural objects, word pictures, are so put together that spiritual light may shine through specifically for that purpose. And so we have throughout the Sacred Scripture places where the internal meaning or spiritual meaning is obvious, open, clear, right in the Letter. These passages in the Word where spiritual truth shines through are said to comprise the doctrine of genuine truth. And the doctrine of genuine truth has to be built up in the first place in our minds by gathering together these passages from the Word where truth shines through, and ordering them in such relation that they build up a system of truth. These passages in the Word where the spiritual sense shines through can be learned by children and understood naturally, and from their natural understanding their minds are prepared to see the spiritual meaning and significance later.

Now that is only one illustration. It is true of everything that we may use as a natural illustration to children, when we understand it spiritually and we are giving it to children so that they may understand it naturally. That is the way the mind is built. Let me illustrate. We teach little children everything by means of a story. What is it? Nothing but a putting together of things, any imaginary things, in a certain order that to us means something. This is the thing that builds the minds of the children in such a way that they can see that thing as they grow older. Although the child, when we are telling the story, may not see or unconsciously realize what we see in it and are trying to pass on to him, yet he sees the story and is interested in the pictures and back of that he sees something more. He may not understand what it is, but he perceives something else. So the mind is led on and on to higher understanding and perception.

Now whenever we tell a story with the idea of teaching something that is spiritually true or even naturally true, we are imparting doctrine to children that is appropriate to their age.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 178 We might try to teach them doctrine directly. As a very obvious illustration: we might teach them doctrine by quoting the Writings, the rational language, words and terms of which they do not understand, and the meanings of which are entirely beyond them. So we might think we are teaching them doctrine, but we wouldnt be. However, if from our knowledge of the Writings, we select stories that illustrate to us spiritual truths, and we tell those stories to the children so that they perceive something more deeply in them that they are interested in, which leads their minds on, then we axle: really teaching doctrine to the children, their kind of doctrine, the kind that belongs to their age.

The whole of the Word in its literal sense is doctrine. The stories of the Word are nothing but doctrine for children. The internal sense of the Word is doctrine for adults, but stories of the Word are doctrine for children, the parables of the Word are doctrine for older children, and the scientific explanation of those parables - that is the laws of nature that illustrate spiritual truth - are the doctrine for youth. These three kinds of doctrine: just word pictures for very little children, stories with a meaning obvious to the child for older children, and scientific explanations ordered to illustrate spiritual truth appropriate to youth, are found in every part of the Word, and the Word can be taught in such a way as to bring out any one or another. There are certain parts of the Word that are more obviously adapted to teaching little children. There are other parts that are more obviously adapted to teaching older children, and there are still others that arouse the interest of youth. But the Word can be taught, drawing out that which is appropriate to each of these ages, from any part.

Lets point out also that, white the Word is the essential origin and source of all doctrine, yet if we understand the doctrine of genuine truth from the Word, then we can utilize all truth - natural truth, scientific truth, or truth of nature. We can utilize all that truth as a teaching of doctrine appropriate to children. And we can use it either in story form far little children, or in imaginative dramatic stories bringing out virtues and natural emotions for older children, or in ways which appeal to the interest in scientific truth with youth. We have, therefore, doctrine that is made up of sense images as the first that can be given little word pictures, but word pictures designed to lead the mind on to see something deeper. Then we have imaginative and moral stories that lead the mind to perceive what is meant by virtues and vices: hero tales, folk-lore illustrating the victory of good over evil, stories arousing natural sympathies, mercy and compassion and charity, comprising dramatic representations of all kinds. These also are the means of imparting doctrine. But note that this may be true or false. It is of utmost importance that we surround our children with teaching that which is true, and those who understand spiritual doctrine, or the doctrine of genuine truth from the Word, can utilize all these things for the purpose of preparing the mind to see spiritual truths. Such teachers can utilize them in a way that others cannot, and there is the whole difference with New Church teaching. That is what the New Church brings to us - an ordering of all these things; not a direct teaching of doctrine to children that is beyond them, but an ordering of all their teaching in all their subjects in such a way that the impression made on their minds will prepare them to see spiritual truth later.



Now this is where the difficulty comes with other educational systems. If we have teaching given under a system that is opposed to spiritual truth, to the acknowledgment of God, of the Word, of life after death, then quite unconsciously all the things that are taught are put together in such a way as to convey an impression to the mind, making it easy to see that philosophy, and hard to see the truth later on. So in the New Church, we must become more and more skillful in preparing them in the proper way to see spiritual truth when they become adult.




AC 36.              All doctrine involved in the Two Great Commandments.

AC 521.              Doctrine arose when perception was lost, as a means of a return to it. Many things of doctrine, without perception, cannot be believed,

AC 2049.              The life of charity cannot be formed without doctrine.

AC 2496.              Doctrine is spiritual from a celestial origin -- not from a rational one.

AC 2572.              Little children are in good but not in the good of doctrine.

AC 2584.              The primary of doctrine is to acknowledge it from the Word, because the Lord has said it.

AC 2719.              Need for human rational things adjoined to doctrine.

AC 3310:4.              Man cannot receive doctrinal things until adult age because sensuous and scientific things confirmatory must first be implanted.

AC 4729.              Man is persuaded from early childhood that the doctrines of his church are true.

HH 516.              Teaching doctrine to children illustrated by teaching of Mohammedans in the other life, it is done by moral teaching in accord with spiritual truth.

Science of
pp. 380-381.              Since doctrine is truth formulated to the understanding, the doctrine for children is truth formulated for their wider standing. Not abstract doctrine.

Pp. 428-429.              The Doctrine of Genuine Truth, seen in the letter of the Word, is that from which all teaching should be done.

Chapter XXIII.       Apply what is here said to secular subjects; that is, how spiritual ideas may be insinuated in concrete form by a teacher enlightened from the Writings.



Section Five              THE DIRECT USE OF REVELATION
Chapter Four

There is a great deal said and thought in the modern world against teaching any doctrine whatever. There is a great revolt against the idea of authoritarianism. They believe that we check all intellectual progress by assuming that something is true without examination. They suppose that any idea of authority produces the effect of closing the mind. It prevents investigation and correction, and tends to hold the mind in a static condition. I think we ought to have a very clear idea in our own minds as to what the truth is about that matter of authoritarianism and the teaching of doctrine.

In the first place we ought not to have too narrow an idea of what doctrine is. To a large extent people think that doctrine is something put forth by the church, something based on the teachings of scripture, some conclusion that has been formulated from the scripture. But doctrine, in its true meaning, is teaching on anything, no matter what plane it is. Any teaching is doctrine. That is what the word means. Therefore there is doctrine involved in any teaching that we may give, and wherever or whatever that teaching, it is based on some authority. In other words, we dont teach anything unless we believe it is true, and we believe it is true because we think there is some authority for that belief. We certainly would not teach something to our children that we, ourselves, were very doubtful about. So all teaching is based on some idea of authority, and that is what is rightly called doctrine.

Now there is doctrine on every plane of the mind, and if we are going to teach, we have to utilize that doctrine on each plane for, as the mind grows, it passes from one plane to the other, as we have seen. Doctrine on the sensual plane applies to little children when they first begin to learn. That doctrine is in the form of sensual appearances, such as that the sun rises and sets. That is essentially an appearance - that the earth is flat, that the sky is blue. They still think that is true. (If you go up in an airplane high enough you will find it otherwise.) And so there are all the appearances to the senses. All colors are sensual appearances. Everything as it appears to the senses is truth on that plane, and children must learn to distinguish between these appearances before they can learn that they are appearances, and learn what the truth back of them really is. Teaching at first is a teaching of the appearances themselves, how to distinguish between them and how they are related to one another, and these appearances are true. The sun does rise. We see it every morning and it sets every night. That is perfectly true. The question of why it does so, or what makes it so appear, is something else. But appearance is a truth and a very important truth. Without that truth we could not understand the abstract truth that is back of it. So children must first learn sensual appearances.

Then there are appearances on the imaginative plane which must be taught next to children. These also are true, although they are not factual. For instance, good is always victorious over evil. The idea that the maiden who is rescued by the brave knight is always beautiful, is true but not always factual.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 182 The idea that the unknown hero turns out to be a prince with a kingdom to offer to his beloved is not always factual either. Finally the idea that they live happily ever after - this is truth as imagination would picture it. We would like to see it as we think it ought to be, as we feel it ought to be. If you consider a moment, there is some reason why we feel that way. We would not feel that way if there were not a truth back of that appearance in the imagination. Why should we feel that good ought always to be victorious over evil? Because there is something in us that tells us that it is true. It is satisfying to our inner feeling of what is right and appropriate. And that is so because we are created to perceive what is true.

Now that is the part that is not recognized by so many who become purely enamored of scientific teaching. They lose sight of the fact that these imaginative things are expressing a truth, a deeper truth, a truth that is of utmost importance for children to learn before they can really understand or interpret scientific truth. And while they will need to revise their understanding of this truth, and came to acknowledge that it is not always factual, nevertheless, because they have learned this truth, they will be able to interpret rightly, in accord with the truth, the appearances and the factual actualities of life which they find later. That is the truth that belongs to childhood.

Now when we pass out of childhood and come into youth, we have to correct our impressions of that truth. What belongs to us then are rational appearances of truth, and these are always realistic. We are not satisfied to simply believe that the hero is always a prince when we see in a number of cases from our own experience that he isnt, and so on. We want to understand this truth in relation to the facts of life as we come to find them. Now in order to do this, we have to begin to understand why it must take place, what is its cause, and this leads us to the idea of law, the abstract idea of law, and of invisible farces that operate according to law. When we get to the point where we are not satisfied to assume that things are as we feel they ought to be, and are compelled to face them as they are, we long to reconcile what we find them to be in actuality with those inner feelings that are so satisfied with our imaginative interpretation of life, those inner feelings of what is right and just and fair. This raises many problems, but rational interpretations give rise to a practical philosophy which is nothing but a reconciliation that satisfies us between what we feel things ought to be and how we actually find them.

That is what a philosophy of life is. And unless this philosophy is led by some inner perception of truth it becomes purely opportunist. It has nothing to anchor it. It drifts with the current of the times. It sways with every wind of public opinion. It merely seeks to satisfy the requirements of the moment, but it has nothing permanent, nothing deep and immovable to direct it, or to hold it steady. If it is to have this, there must be some internal perception of truth that is above our own interpretation of how we think things ought to be, or how they are in relation to what we think they ought to be. There must be sane perception of truth, of an absolute truth, some standards above our opinion, or anybody elses opinion, by which we can measure and judge how far our philosophical conclusions will stand the test. Of course when we come to that we at once face this problem of authority.



If we merely accept some established authority blindly, because we have been taught that it is so, or because it has stood the test of time, because many generations have held to it, because it is one of the oldest concepts in the history of mankind, or same other such reason, then we do become guilty of authoritarianism. And that kind of blind authority does close the mind and block the way to intellectual progress. This is perfectly true. But on the other hand to refuse to acknowledge that there is such a thing as an absolute truth at all, that anybody has any standard by which to measure, blocks our progress just as much, for we never know where we are going, and may restrict tomorrow what we are sure of today.

The modern tendency is to recognize one absolute truth, one basis and foundation of absolute truth, and that is nature itself. The careful examination of nature, checked and rechecked, is the around and basis of all modern scientific development. With the acceptance of that authority, and the overthrow of a blind following of ecclesiastical dogma, the way was opened to tremendous development of knowledge and practical use of the researches of nature. But so far as we acknowledge only this one foundation or basis, we are tied to what we can prove by sensual demonstration. We still have no guide whatever with reference to those inner feelings of what is right and wrong; no guide whatever to a philosophical interpretation of life, as to why it is there, what it is all for, where it is all going. The fact that we must acknowledge nature as an authority by no means blocks other intellectual progress, but opens it.

It is just as true for men to acknowledge Divine Revelation as authority. In the same way and for the same reason, it will not block their intellectual progress, but will open unending avenues of intellectual development. Then in just the same sense, not to accept some interpretation of Divine Revelation that has been established by the Church, or as the authority of tradition, but to regard Divine Revelation as something that has been given by the Lord, reveals the answer to those questions that cannot be proved by sensual demonstration. In seeking this answer, man must have an acknowledgment that there is an absolute truth with reference to those things that men feel internally but cannot prove by sensual demonstrations. He must have an acknowledgment that there is an absolute truth about these that is right in itself, whether men think so or not; that this right has been revealed in the Word; and that man can approach to an understanding of it ever more nearly, although he never can attain the absolute truth.

That is just as true of Divine Revelation as it is of nature. Men go on investigating nature, and while they prove this, that, and the other thing, they always find more discoveries that modify their proofs. So it is with spiritual things. To recognize that the Word is absolute truth, but that human beings merely approach the understanding of that truth, and try to have as the ideal an ever closer approach to it, cultivating an internal humility, recognizing that we know very little and must continually be in need of learning - this is what opens the way to intellectual intelligence and wisdom, to all intellectual development. It will do so with regard to spiritual things just as it does so in regard to natural things.



Thus there are two foundations of truth; both of them true in themselves; both of them above any human opinion; both of them capable of being misunderstood, but both of them also capable of being truly understood. More and more truly, if we approach them rightly and so gain greater knowledge and insight. That is the ideal of authority that leads to wisdom.

Blindly accepted authority is, as we have said, authoritarianism, and at the present day there is a great tendency to confuse this with any belief in Divine Revelation. Only nature must be so approached as an authority - that is the modern attitude. But what happens when we adopt that idea? The result is that we merely exchange some authority of religion or the church for human authorities. One of my most vivid recollections of college training was the strict insistence that no thesis on any subject should be written without being documented. If we made a statement we must give our authority for it. Now in factual matters that goes back to what has been proved and can be proved, but what about when it comes to a matter of philosophy and you quote an authority? It always appeared to me that it savored of the very authoritarianism that they were trying to oppose. Why is it an authority? Is it because the man who said it is a great man, everyone recognizes him, he is a learned professor, and what he says must be true? We had debates at college, and somebody would get up and question what was said. Always he would hear, Do you have the temerity to question what that man said? He is a great man. Now it appeared to me that that had the effect of blinding the mind and preventing it from investigating, just as the authoritarianism of the Church had, exactly the same.

So we need to see the difference between true genuine authority, and what is called authoritarianism. And there is good reason why we need to free our minds from being bound to the authoritarianism that arises when we do not acknowledge the Divine authority of the Word. Whence comes the Divine authority of the Word in a practical sense for us? It is not merely acknowledging that here is something that has been spoken by God, and therefore it is true. If that were all, and we were incapable of understanding it, that would certainly be a blind authority. To simply acknowledge, for instance, the Hebrew scriptures as true without knowing Hebrew, without ever being able to read them, but by looking at them and saying, That is the Word of God, therefore it is true - that would certainly be blind authoritarianism even in acknowledging the Divinity of the Word. Its truth must be based in the last analysis on the living perception of what must be true, what we sense and perceive within our selves must be so.

In the Word there are many things we do not understand, but there are also truths plainly stated which at once appeal to the mind, to which the mind gives immediate assent from common perception. In this assent all men agree; or, if not, it is because they have destroyed that common perception in themselves. The truth is that there is a God, and if there is a God, He must be good. We must represent the highest good possible, and what He says must be true, must be the highest possible truth. What He does must be just; whatever He does must be merciful. Everything: that God does must be in order. Now these are things to which the human mind gives immediate assent from what we call common perception, and they give a basis for an acknowledgment that the Word is from the Divine. They give rise to all of those things we later find directly, clearly, plainly, stated in the Letter of the Word. They give rise to other things that we recognize at once as rational truth, as principles of truth.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 185 For instance, the created universe is for the sake of a heaven from the human race. If that is true, .then all nature must be for the sake of man. Also, all things in nature look to the human form and partake of the human form, the human being the highest and all-inclusive form of Gods creation. Again, nature is the same in greatests and in leasts, and other planets must be inhabited. All these are universal principles to which, if we think from the center of a God Who is Love and Wisdom, the mind gives immediate assent from common perception.

If, then, in our efforts to interpret life as we find it, we begin our thinking with universal principles such as these drawn from the Word, and confirmed by the doctrine of genuine truth and refuse to be turned from them by external appearances to the contrary, while still always questioning and seeking to improve our personal understanding of those principles and how they are to be applied; then we are submitting to authority that will by no means close the mind, but will open the way to unlimited progress in development in a definite direction. It will give the opportunity, the possibility of developing and understanding ever more nearly in accord with the truth of nature, on the one hand, and the truth of the Word on the other.

That is the ideal of authority, very briefly and simply put, which the Writings give us. And it is the concept of teaching that should guide us in imparting doctrine to our children in school. This is the ideal to which they ought to be led, and if we reflect upon it we find that it will greatly modify our mode of teaching. There is tremendous confusion in educational thought in the present day because of this matter of authority. On the one hand it is recognized that whatever you teach is going to came before the children with some authority. On the other hand it is recognized that the ideas and opinions of man are changing very rapidly. Times change, and how do we know that the things we teach today will not be denied tomorrow? Therefore there is a tremendous uncertainty and hesitation as to what we ought to teach.

There is a general result with many of saying: Lets not teach them anything. At least, lets not give the impression that we are sure of anything. Lets teach children that they have to learn for themselves; have to develop their own ideas out of their own experiences, and not rely on anybody else. Lets just leave them without any authoritative teaching whatever. The result of that is, that the poor children are lacking the kind of guidance and direction which is necessary to build up any idea in their own minds as to how they are to find the truth when they grow older. They are left drifting on an open sea without any compass or any rudder. The natural idea they get is, Whatever I think is true, must be right. Whatever I think is so must have authority in itself. It leads right back to self-intelligence without any recognition of Divine Revelation. These children are supposed to come to the truth by their own discovery, by testing it out and finding whether it is true or not. Only what they so test and find out for themselves should they be expected to believe. Therefore it is a mistake to teach anything positive, but always teach it with a question, and let the child find out for himself.



Now there is some value in this, and if that attitude were combined with a recognition of Divine Revelation as absolute truth, to which man may approach more nearly, as well as the recognition of nature as a basis of truth to which he can approach much more nearly, then it would lead in the right direction. But if it doesnt involve that, then it leaves the mind adrift. In order to lead properly we have to teach positively, definitely, that what the Lord says in His Word is true.

We all must begin by believing that what the Lord says in His Word is true because that is the foundation of truth. Children must be so led in childhood if they are ever to come to a true idea of authority of doctrine. It all must be based on that. Yet here is what is left out in modem educational philosophy: by no means tell children we have anything that is true from Divine Revelation. Tell them that only what they find out by their own experiences is true, and nothing else! That is the grave mistake in modern educational philosophy. It goes back to the question of what is involved in New Church education as being the means to give children a basis and foundation for a belief in Divine Revelation as truth.



Section Five                     THE DIRECT USE OF REVELATION

I want to say something about the use of Memorable Relations in teaching. Memorable Relations are entirely distinctive of the New Church, so far as I know. While the Christian Churches doctrinally assert belief in a life after death they do not admit any knowledge of what the life after death is like. I had an experience in connection with that a few years ago. I was giving a funeral address and a clergyman of the Christian Church was present. He spoke to me after the service and told me that he was very much interested in what had been said about the life after death. For his own part, he said, he had to stick very closely to what was in the Bible. He admitted he did not know anything about it. The truth was that I had said nothing that was not said in the Bible itself. The Bible is full of Memorable Relations. The literal scenes in the Scripture are, in large measure, we are told, taken from things visible in the spiritual world. But the attitude about it is such, as the result of Christian ideas of long standing, that this is one of the most difficult things for people at the present day to accept as possible that someone could be introduced into the spiritual world and return and tell his experiences.

It was so at the time of Swedenborgs life, and he was well aware that that would be the case. His friend, Count von Hopken, wrote a letter shortly after Swedenborgs death to an acquaintance about Swedenborg, and we quote from it as follows: The doctrine of Swedenborg is the most rational of all Christian doctrines, and urges, as its first object, to be of good and honest principles. There are two things in the doctrine and the Writings of Swedenborg; the first is his Memorable Relations. Of this I cannot judge, not having had any spiritual intercourse myself of which to judge of his assertions either approvingly or disapprovingly, but they cannot appear more extraordinary than the Apocalypse of John and other similar relations contained in the Bible. The second is his tenets of doctrine. Of these I can judge. They are excellent, irrefutable, and the best that ever we taught, promoting the happiest social life. I know that Swedenborg has related his Memorabilia bona fide. I asked him once why he wrote and published those Memorable Relations which seemed to throw so much ridicule on his doctrine, otherwise so rational, and whether it would not be best for him to keep them to himself and not to publish them to the world; but he answered that he had orders from the Lord to publish then and that those who might ridicule him on that account would do him injustice for why should I, a man of years, render myself ridiculous for fantasies and false accounts. Documents ii p. 415.

Anyone who reads Memorable Relations with a real belief in the other life as a continuation of human life will not at all find them ridiculous. We are introduced by narrative and word pictures to things seen and heard. That these things seen and heard in the Spiritual World should be reproduced in writing on earth is of the utmost importance, for things seen and heard in the other world, actual experiences in the other world, are the means of preparing for a final place after death. They are the means of education for both children and adults. It is noted in the Writings that teaching in the other world is done largely by living representations or experiences.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 188 And when these things that have been seen and experienced by someone, are described in writing, they are made available to others, and pass before the imagination as they are read. This is very real to children who, in the imagination, live these things themselves, and thus they have a similar experience, only less powerful.

The same is true of a great deal that is written in the Letter of the Word, in the Prophets and also in the historical books, Whatever visions are described were actual experiences in the spiritual world, recorded that they might become in a measure the experience of the race. When we think of it, very few people can individually undergo same experience that has a powerful effect on their lives, but if that experience is reproduced in writing and printing and spread over the world it becomes the property of many. That is true of all history. History becomes the property of the race because it is recorded, and we can in imagination live it. And the more important the experiences are, the more valuable is this reproduction, in making them common to many people. Consider the Birth of the Lord into the world. How few had actual personal experience of it. How real it is to many generations, to countless generations of many people all over the world, because it is recorded and can be reproduced in the imagination. How real it is to children to read the story and hear it told and see it represented at Christmas time! That gives us some idea of the tremendous power of the imagination in multiplying the effects of individual experience,

Swedenborg, himself, tells us that his Memorable Relations were essential. The internal sense of the Word, he says, cannot be understood without an actual knowledge of the conditions of the spiritual world. We cannot under stand the internal sense of the Word unless we know something about the conditions and laws of the spiritual world. Therefore, he says, it would have been impossible for him to give the doctrine understandably to men unless he himself had been introduced into the spiritual world and been brought into association with spirits and angels there, and come to know their life. And for the same reason, it would have been impossible for men to receive his doctrine unless it was accompanied by Memorable Relations, describing the conditions in the spiritual world.

Now these are of special value to children. When they are children there is no disposition to be critical, or to doubt and question the possibility of such wonderful things happening. Then it is that the telling of the Memorable Relations has a powerful effect in preparing their minds unconsciously for the understanding of doctrine later on, for they are unconsciously absorbing a knowledge of conditions in the spiritual world without which the doctrine is not understandable.

One of the great reasons why people of the present day find it so difficult to understand the doctrine, especially the interpretation of the internal sense of the Word, is that they have no real idea of what life in the other world is like. After all, what is life in the other world? It is nothing but the internal Life of mans spirit, of his mind. And the internal sense of the Word is nothing but the teaching of the Lord translated from an external historical narrative, regarding people and places and times, to a description of what happens in mans mind - how the mind changes its state, and how mans spiritual life thus progresses.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 189 That is nothing else but the spiritual world. It is very important that we should have those ideas about the reality of the spiritual world impressed while we are children. It is important to have the imagination formed for it and according to it while we are children, so that we may have a picture of heaven and a picture of the life after death that is reasonable, that fits in with all that we ate going to learn later from doctrine about mans spiritual life.

Now that is one of the greatest values of the Word. That is what: the Latter of the Word has done. Whatever ideas men have had about the other world, they have derived from the Letter of the Word in the descriptions of the other life given there. There is no other source, unless they go to a Dante or a Milton whose ideas in turn are all derived from the Bible and from ancient mythology.

The Memorable Relations of Swedenborg are therefore something that is very useful for us to use, but we must do so with proper care and caution in our teaching. We should do so, as we said with reference to correspondences, in connection with the doctrine of genuine truth. We must insinuate these Memorable Relations together with simple doctrine, simple principles of truth. The Memorable Relations are written for that purpose: to illustrate the doctrine of genuine truth. They are not just isolated incidents, haphazardly described. Swedenborg lived for many years in the spiritual world before his death, constantly associating with spirits there. He had innumerable experiences. Those that are written down in the Writings are carefully selected. They are all selected for a purpose. They are selected because of what they teach, and they contain the doctrine of genuine truth. They were written to illustrate and make real to men the laws of the spiritual world, and to put those laws that are abstract in our view, to bring them dawn into concrete objective form, by allowing us to see those laws at work, to see how they operate. That is what Swedenborg did and that is what we do when we share his experiences through the Memorable Relations.

Therefore the Memorable Relations help immensely to make doctrine living for children. We might teach a doctrine to children as an abstract thing and it would have very little meaning so that they would remember it only for a while. But if doctrine can be illustrated by actual experiences, then from being abstract it comes down into a plane of what is concrete. As a matter of fact that is the value of all our teaching, all our illustrations, whether we draw them from history, from fable, from folklore, from literature, anywhere. That is what it is all for. It is to illustrate and make concrete laws that otherwise would be abstract, because it enables us to see those laws at work.

Now folklore, fable, fairy tales - all these have the same value as the Memorable Relations for little children. They are based on the idea of the spiritual world, of the human mind and the way it operates. They illustrate spiritual laws that cannot be illustrated by actual experiences in this world, and the more ancient these stories are, the more they do that, because they were written, or came into being, at a time when men had a perception of the spiritual world. Modern fairy tales that are purely imaginary, written by people who have no idea whatever of the spiritual world, are often purely fantastic and have no such content of internal truth.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 190 They may even contain a very false idea of life, and therefore we need to select with some care the modern fairy tales that we think are most useful for our children. They might be very interesting as stories, but that would not be the only criterion of their value. Do they give a true picture of life or do they not? Will they lead the mind to see what is true later on or do they tend to implant some false idea that will have to be removed?

There is an added use and value in the Memorable Relations, as compared to fairy tales, folklore, and fable, - the latter give spiritual experiences as if they were in this world. Children make no distinction. The spiritual world and the natural world are all one to children, and these fairy tales they imagine as happening on earth. But the Memorable Relations are openly laid in the spiritual world. Children are told that they are in the spiritual world. They introduce the idea of these wonderful things happening in the other world that cannot happen on earth, and so it is insinuated into them the reality of the other world. They are led to think as naturally about that world as about this one, and also are led unconsciously to realize that the two are not the same; that we have two worlds and that certain things can happen in one world that cannot happen in the other. All this is of value.

Now when a small child asks, as they do, how much is real in fairy tale, what should we tell them? Of course, this depends: upon the circumstances, but as a rule we can tell that it is real. It is real, only it is not factual. Especially if they have this teaching we have mentioned and they begin to learn the distinction, it is very easy for them later on to realize that the reality lies in the other world and not in this world. But there is where the mistake is made by the other philosophy when they teach that the only real things lie in the physical senses, and if it cant be physically demonstrated you should not teach it to children because it is not true.

Children readily respond to open teaching about the other world. They have no difficulty at all. They dont have the same trouble that our friend, the minister, had. They can stick to what is in the Bible, and yet they can believe in the other world and the reality of it. Therefore it is altogether right and useful that Memorable Relations be used by teachers. They can be used as illustrations of laws and principles of life, which come up in connection with every subject. This can be done casually, naturally, as a matter of course, so that the other world and its reality is taken for granted, not to be questioned nor to be proved. You dont have to prove the reality of the other world to children. They believe it spontaneously. They are created to see and understand it. It doesnt need to be proved. As matter of fact, it is almost impossible to disprove it. There is no destination nor doubt about it. Simple people everywhere who have not been indoctrinated against it spontaneously respond to a belief in the other world.

Experiences from the other world described by Swedenborg may be quoted and referred to frequently, and as naturally as experiences from history or from literature or from folklore in this world, and to do so makes those spiritual experiences part of the mental equipment of our children. It gives them those experiences as if they had had them. You know how it is. Things we are told when we are little children make a tremendous impression on us, and later on how often we ourselves actually think we have been through an experience that we have just been told about.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 191 We feel it just as if we had been there. We have all had that experience; we all can remember such situations.

However, while the Memorable Relations give us a rich store of material with which to illustrate our teaching, and thus vastly increase the educational means at our disposal as teachers, yet it is necessary for us in some measure to understand these Memorable Relations, to know what they are for, why they were given, what it is intended for them to teach, in order that we may use them intelligently. Even if they are not understood they can be faithfully reproduced. We can use these Memorable Relations, reproduce them even when we dont understand what they are about. As a matter of fact we have to do that. We will find we dont always understand what they are about, and yet they can be used. But it is important for us to progress in our understanding of these experiences, to study them in their connection, in their relation in the Writings to other things to see and understand why they were given. Then we can begin to use them more accurately in our teaching and by means of them to implant seeds of genuine truth.

In doing this, however, we may be discouraged about our use of them. I have known many cases where that is so. People will start to study the Memorable Relations and they became impressed by their abstract doctrinal content and think, How in the world are you going to teach that to children? You find in these Memorable Relations, long philosophical and theological discussions, and if you just try to read Memorable Relations to children, including all those discussions, they get lost and lose the story, because there is so very much there - and we do too. We get lost in the discussion and large extent.

Now these philosophical discussions are not for children, but they do contain the key to the reason why the Memorable Relations are given. They help us with what it is intended to insinuate or illustrate. Children ought to know they do hold discussions in the other world, and they can be given the story in connection with the fact that they held a discussion. Also the subject of that discussion, whatever it was about - about God, or about providence, about marriage, about creation - can be connected with the story of the setting. We dont need to go into all the arguments and discussions about it. The content for the children is the story and the description.

In the same way these can be made very real to the children by dramatization, representation, and this far more powerfully than we are able to do yet. We have done something of it in our tableaux and in our pageants, but our first beginnings are a sort of feeling out. Nor need we be limited by any means to those things in the Writings that are labeled Memorable Relations. We find much throughout the Writings not so labeled that can be of the same use. Heaven and Hell and the Spiritual Diary are full of experiences and descriptions of the things in the other world. Many parts of the Writings contain things that can be used in the same way.

As we become familiar with these things and coma to understand them more fully ourselves, we wilt be able to use them freely, just as an artist learns to use his colors and paints. When you first begin to paint, you have to follow straight and definite rules. You feel as though you are greatly restricted and cant do very much about it.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 192 After you have learned to master the rules and reasons for it then you are free. You know how to use them effectively, and then you invent and do new things. So it is with all literature and all art. This matter of using the things of the imagination in education is an art whether we are doing it by telling a story, by dramatization, or by any means whatsoever. And that art will grow and increase with us, become more powerful, as we become more skillful. The importance of it is that it will make the spiritual world more real. It will increase the sense of the reality of that world with our children, and enable them to maintain it after the state of childhood passes. The greatest value of those early stories can be maintained and interpreted in rational terms when the time comes.

There is a sense in which the Memorable Relations are the bridge by which all we love in the imagination as little children can be preserved and kept with us in later life. This is because they help us to translate our imagining to the other world, to apply them to that in which we come to really believe, and to so see the real truth in them rationally. At the same time they will insinuate truths long before we can understand them abstractly. They will insinuate into the mind truths that we come unconsciously to acknowledge and recognize at once when they are stated in rational form later on, because the mind has been seeing them work right along.

It is the same with all our teaching. We realize we cant teach a child any truth unless we come dawn to a thing that is within his experience. If we talk about something that he has never heard about, he cant understand, but as soon as we come down to something that he has experienced, he sees the truth because he understands it. Now as soon as it is told him, he recognizes it at once. This same thing is true of experiences in the other world, passed on and made real to children through the Memorable Relations, and experienced by children in the imagination. By that means they have had that experience, and on the basis of that experience they can understand at once what otherwise would be truly alien to them. Note the teaching on this subject which is very useful and well given in the Science of Exposition by W. F. Pendleton, p. 315-321, where the illustrations intimate the relation between these stories of the other world and the internal sense of the Word, and how important it is to have these experiences as a means of introducing the child to the spiritual sense. The author points out there that instead of teaching abstract doctrine, we teach that doctrine concretely by implanting in the mind experiences that contain it.

Memorable Relations were given and selected in order that men might have their needs prepared to see the truth that is stated abstractly in other parts of the Writings. And so we want to prepare the minds of children by the same means. As a matter of fact it will make a tremendous difference. And that is only one means. We are doing the same thing with all our teaching by that idea of preparing the minds of children to see abstract truth by first building the imagination. Building the imagination in the form and order that will open to that truth makes a tremendous difference in later life, in the ease with which people will be able to see and understand the teaching of the Writings.



Section Five                     THE DIRECT USE OF REVELATION
Chapter Six


Finally, we would make a few remarks on the subject of the Letter of the Word and its use in teaching. The tradition of the Academy has been opposed to the use of the Letter of the Word in secular teaching, and the reason was in order to increase the sense of reverence for the Word in the minds of children. This was a reaction against the very frequent custom that was growing up in other schools of using the Letter of the Word in the same way that we would use any other book. It was used just as if it were an ancient document without any special sanctity. Various types of literature and poetry and prose were illustrated by means of it, and it was used as a text to study grammar and literary structure of language.

Possibly the Academy went too far in this direction, because of a reaction against what we have just mentioned. Possibly the reaction went to the other extreme, and there grew up a sort of hesitation and fear of using the Word. Certainly, there was a period when it was rather noticeable that children taught in our schools had less knowledge of the Letter of the Word than many children brought up in Christian Churches with Christian Church education. Our great stress was on the teaching of doctrine, and for a time at least, the Latter of the Word was somewhat neglected. I think that is no longer true. I believe that the lack was recognized and has been corrected.

Still we have to try to define in our minds what is the proper use of the Letter of the Word in connection with secular studies. It can and should be used. Certainly in later periods of education, the use of it even for the study of literature poetry, etc. is valuable and necessary. It should be used, and can be used in connection with various studies with little children, such as geography, and history. The problem is to do this in such a way as not to detract from a sense of its holiness, preserving with the child a realization that the Word is not like other books, and that what is written there is to be differently regarded from all other human writing.

There is a strong tendency, in all circles where the Word is not held in sanctity, to ridicule, and this is something into which children can naturally fall, because of the fact that the expressions of the Word are strange and unusual to them. The only way to avoid it is to have them taught to regard the Word as holy, so that they will, themselves, avoid that natural tendency. This tendency is not by any means confined to children. They come in contact with it continually in public print and in the common usage of grown people. My own experience in college illustrates it. One of our professors at the University was very noted for his scriptural jokes. He was always using the Word as the basis of jokes, with flippant allusions, and they had a great effect on the class. It was however, an effect which destroyed any sense of holiness about the Word and filled the mind with mental pictures that were extremely disturbing. It is such a common thing that we sometimes fall into it ourselves without realizing it. We find it so commonly done in the world around us and certainly it affects children.



It was, as I say, in reaction against these various things that the early Academy was very strict in the matter of avoiding the use of the Letter of the Word except in religious classes and in the sphere of worship. With the kindergarten, the morning worship circle as the first thing of the day, reading the stories of the Word, was a symbol of the whole attitude of the Academy toward the use of the Latter of the Word. However, the extremes of that stand had to be taken because of the surroundings in which we found ourselves. It need not be held where we have built up a common sense of reverence for the Word on the part of all our older people with whom our children come in contact. Then we can be freer. The essential thing is not a form. The essential thing is an attitude of reverence in the mind. If that is there, we can use the Word quite naturally.

There is an opposite tendency that has grown up, especially in some public schools, due to the desire to avoid sectarian differences, and that custom is to ignore the Bible completely and avoid any allusions to it whatever. That, of course, doesnt lead to an increase in reverence, but to a sense of complete separation between the Word and the things of life that are taught in school, a separation from all other books and sources of knowledge. So that is not the ideal by any means. What we need to seek is the proper use of the Word, giving it its rightful place, first in the mind and then in the school.

Where there is reverence far the Word in the mind of the teacher, so that this has become a natural attitude - nothing assumed but completely natural - and where that attitude of reverence is felt by the children, and has been established in the school as what is right, then the Word can be used quite freely, whether in religious classes or in secular classes. And we will be restrained from any use of it that would injure the sense of reverence for it. We would be restrained from that by no rule, but by an inner sense or hesitation on our own part in each case. Where that attitude has been built up, then much can be found in the letter of the Word that is of great value in the teaching of other subjects, and to which reference can be made without hesitation.

Illustrations can be drawn from the Letter of the Word to bring out some deeper truth in connection with other subjects, even while we are refusing to turn the Word into a text-book for grammar or a biography or what not. Certainly quite apart from its spiritual significance, the Bible is a source of literary power and beauty that we can learn to appreciate. It is interesting that the Biblical scholars have been unable, with any unanimity, to analyze the literature of the Bible. They find difficulty in assigning it to any form of literary development. This is especially true now of the Hebrew. The Greek language in its later development became a classic example and basis for modern poetry and literary expression, but the Hebrew was much older, more primitive, less formal and much harder to analyze. As a matter of fact, for many years, its poetic value was hardly seen by scholars, and yet it is extremely powerful. Certainly if we realize that this power had its origin in Divine inspiration, it will merely increase our reverence for the Word and our recognition of its Divine source and origin when we see and appreciate this literary power and beauty.



Hebrew poetry is characterized by the fact that it is so various, so free in form, that it can hardly be analyzed according to fixed rules. It is quite unconventional as compared with Greek and with modern poetry based on the Greek form. It is much less stereotyped, and yet it has rules of its own. It has modes of its own that are extremely effective, and literary scholars have endeavored far many years to reduce these to forms, and analyze them in such a way that they could classify them. In same part that has been done, but there are many, many exceptions in Hebrew to any rule that can be made. It is noted more far its exceptions than its rules. If we analyze it, the reason is that these people were not consciously trying to create poetry, they were just speaking naturally as they felt. Certainly that was true of primitive writings among the Hebrews. And that natural mode of expression was the result of influx from the other world. It was not a matter of rationally analyzing and working out: how an effect was going to be produced. As a matter of fact, that is the source of any really true power of expression and speech; the power is greater where it is unconscious, natural, a mere outflowing of emotion according to natural laws of the human mind, which are the sane as the laws of influx.

Classic poetry or modern poetry is not an invention. It is a discovery of what already existed before men realized or analyzed it. It is a discovery of natural laws of human expression that are inherent in the form of the human mind. Now these laws were used unconsciously by ancient peoples long before they analyzed them and put them down into formal rules. The more they spoke by inspiration, by influx from the other world, the more completely they followed this law of human expression that was natural. That is the reason why it is so difficult for the Biblical critics to understand the Bible, and how it came into being in its many parts - because they think of it as something that must have developed as a formal art. They find in it very remarkable illustrations of the art of expression existing at a time when so far as they know there was no formal development of the art, or at least not to that extent.

If we are to accept the Bible at its face value - not take it apart as some of the higher critics do, and put it together again in a way that we think it must have been done, because it is too remarkable that it could have cane about naturally - there are many illustrations of a use of language that was by no means predetermined, pre-worked-out by the speaker. For instance, in the case of the Magnificat, we have no historic indication that Mary was possessed of a literary education. If she spoke the words of the Magnificat, she spoke one of the finest pieces of poetry in human language. We cannot believe that was the result of a highly developed art on her part, nor was it, as the higher critics would say, a forgery of a much later time by someone who had Literary training. There is no proof of that at all. Theirs is simply a supposition because they cannot see how to assign to a woman like Mary such poetry. The same thing would be true of the prophecy of Zechariah, and the prophecy of Balaam. They are remarkable pieces of literature, apparently spoken by unlettered lips.

Now these things can be used in the teaching of various subjects. Certainly in the teaching of literature, they can be used in such a way as to illustrate the truth that the source of the art of speaking and writing is not the result of human invention. It is a discovery of the laws that are of Divine origin, and that existed long before men had discovered them in the modern sense in that they analyzed what they were.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 196 If you read Briggs Study of the Holy Scripture you will find a very good analysis of the literature of the Bible from the standpoint of literary criticism. It will give many ideas as to how it might be used; how the Letter of the Word might be used to increase an appreciation in children of the form and beauty of the Word, and at the same time increase the recognition and acknowledgment of its Divine source and the sense of reverence for it, rather than the apposite.

Not only may we use the Parables of the Word and its historic incidents to illustrate and impress the doctrine of genuine truth that may arise in connection with any subject we may be teaching, but we can find in the Bible reference to ancient customs, modes of life, which give the source of many of our modern customs. This shows again that these customs have arisen from a perception of spiritual laws of the most ancient people. For instance, many of our traditions in regard to what is polite, to a sense of propriety, to what is charitable in conduct or ethical in ideas, can be traced back to their original sources in ancient civilization as illustrated in the Scriptures. And they can be shown to be representative and correspondential and thus as having a spiritual origin. Men built them up at a tire when they were perceptive of their spiritual significance and when these things were a means of expressing for them the acknowledgment of the Divine Law.

We find much involved in the laws of the Jews about property, about inheritance, about crime and its punishment, much that is obsolete and has no literal meaning or significance at the present day, but when we examine it, we find it to be profoundly significant of spiritual laws that are still true, that will be eternally true. In the ancient rites of coronation, in the anointing of pillars to mark a boundary or a place of vision where an angel had appeared, in the customs of establishing covenants by eating together - in all these things, we find examples of spiritual laws that are still operating and that give the source and origin of many of our modern customs.

Before there was any printing or mode of preserving documents, far instance, there was the ancient custom of making two copies of a contract, one to be sealed in a clay container which would have to be broken in order that the document might be seen, and the other one open, kept with it. But it was known that the one that was sealed in the container was a copy of the one that was open. That is illustrated in a number of places in the Word, particularly in the case of Jeremiah when he bought a parcel of ground at Anathoth outside of Jerusalem at a time when the Babylonians were threatening to capture the land, and when property rights were about to be entirely wiped away and destroyed. He was commanded to buy this parcel of ground belonging to a branch of his family. He was commanded to buy it as a sign that the property rights would again be restored, a sign of his faith in the protection of the Lord in spite of all the danger that threatened. And the evidence of the sale was made on two copies of parchment, one to be sealed and the other opened. Well, when we consider the meanings and significance of that ancient custom, it must have had its origin, not merely in the literal need to preserve the evidence, but also in the internal law involved; that is, it is true that whatever is done in human relations must be both open and concealed.


PHILOSOPHY OF NEW CHURCH EDUCATION p. 197 It is impressed both on our external mind and also on the internal memory. The Writings in describing that ancient use of a sealed document speak of it as an illustration in the minds of ancient peoples, as a mode of expressing that every act of human life was impressed on the internal memory as well as on the external memory. There, although to human consciousness it might be forgotten, it was preserved to eternity and had an evident effect on all mans future thinking. It is what modern psychologists speak of as the unconscious, with its tremendous effect on the human mind. There are impressions made on the mind which we forget, but which have a tremendous effect on our future feelings and emotions, and on the modification of our mental reactions later.

I want to use that as an illustration of many instances throughout the Letter of the Word where we can use the literal stories to illustrate spiritual laws, and the before the use of the Letter of the Word in our schools should be encouraged. It should be increased. We should not be afraid to use it in any of our classes so long as we preserve a sense of reverence for the Word with little children. And this will be done if that sense of reverence is instilled with ourselves and with the other older people with whom our children came in contact. Then quite naturally and without any predetermined pattern, the things which would injure that reverence would be avoided.

Also we need to teach the Letter of the Word to our children that they may be familiar with it. In this too I think we can increase still further what we are now doing. At the present time the course in religion throughout our Elementary School is designed to cover the whole of the Word, but it is like the teaching of history and other subjects. If we merely take it chronologically, we find that the earlier stages are taught at an age when very little about them can be appreciated, and unless we go back to them later on when the mind is more developed, we are not getting the latest value out of them. So I believe that we can follow up with teaching the Letter of the Word to older children further than we are now able to do. In part it is done through childrens services in addition to our regular classes in religion. But I believe that also the right teaching of the Letter of the Word on the high school level could be increased beyond what we are now doing with great benefit.