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Divine Nature
The Oneness of God spiritual wisdom logo

Is the Oneness of God an important part of our vision as we search for God and seek to find some being greater and more perfect in quality than any human being?

In the world around us we see other people that may in some small way manifest a deeper, purer love or greater wisdom than ourselves; and although they may be great examples for us to live by we perceive that the perfection of God’s love and wisdom must be greater still. It is like climbing in an area of hills and mountains. Every time we reach the summit of one small hill, another that is higher still comes into view. As we climb and climb, and hills change to mountains we are led on and on - upwards towards the highest peak. And when we begin to approach that, we begin to realise that there can only be ONE highest peak - just as when in our search for God we realise there can be only ONE highest source of all that is best in creation and human life - so the Oneness of God becomes a reality for us.

Many world religions such as Judaism and Islam have taught the Oneness of God but there have been other religions who have presented God as having many different faces all derived from one most perfect God. In Hindu tradition for example, if we were to ask the question - “Which is true: is there one God or are there many Gods?” - the answer would be that both statements are true. One way to understand this is to recognise that although we see God as perfectly ONE we experience God in many ways - for example as a counsellor we can confide in, as a leader we wish to follow, as a father figure that loves us, or as a warrior that fights spiritual battles on our behalf.

Thinking about God in this way leads us to wonder whether God is just simply ONE or whether there are a number of key attributes needed to make up this ONENESS of God. But at this point we need to look at ourselves to get some insight into this question.

Imagine that you want to paint a picture - or to put it more strongly - you would love to paint a picture. But your desire to paint on its own won’t ever produce a painting. You need to know how to paint and to have the right tools available, if you are to achieve anything. Your love must wrap itself around your knowledge or wisdom if you are to achieve your aim. And then together your love to paint and your wisdom as to how to do it combines beautifully in activity, and a painting is produced. Whether we are aware of it or not everything we do follows this pattern of motivation (love), know-how (wisdom) and resulting product (activity). love wisdom activity

And right near the beginning of the Bible it says that “God created man in his own image…”.

If we put these thoughts together we can begin to see that God is ONE but that this ONENESS of God is made up of Love, Wisdom and Activity. The Divine nature is thus both ONE and THREEFOLD in nature.

Emanuel Swedenborg presents the ONENESS of God and the THREEFOLD nature of God throughout his writings and goes on to show that the Christian idea of the Creator God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit can also be understood in terms of the Love (Father), Wisdom (Son) and Activity (Holy Spirit) of the ONE personal GOD.

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