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Lectures by Hugo Lj. Odhner


Chapter XIII


    For the general purposes of this course, we shall study the correspondences of the body under the heads of Four Provinces of - a) Abdominal Viscera, b)  Thoracic Viscera, c) Cerebral Viscera, and d) Genital Viscera - Prefacing these with a chapter on the ULTIMATES OF THE BODY.

    This order is one which seems to reconcile most easily the various series used in the Writings.  These four provinces  stand, in general, for the following four functions : a) Nutrition, b) Blood Circulation or Distribution etc., c) Government and Motivation, and d) Propagation and Conjugial Conjunction.  They also indicate the four general fluids by which life is sustained in the body, i.e. a) the Chyle and kindred lymphs, b) the Blood, c) the Purer Blood or nervous juice, sometimes called "Animal Spirits", and d) the highest natural medium of the body which, in some of the earlier works of Swedenborg, is called "the spirituous fluid" - sometimes also "the animal spirit" - and is the direct vehicle of the propagation of the paternal soul, and thus is the inmost vital fluid in the seed.

    The three universal essences - a) the  SOUL, conveyed through the 'simple fibres"; b) the ANIMAL SPIRIT, conveyed in the "composite fibres"; and c) the BLOOD, conveyed in the bloodvessels - are mentioned in the work on TheBrain, vol. I, no. 89.  (See AK 509, and chapter on the Periosteum.)

    In the Writings a threefold "blood" is suggested, in the order of blood, nervous juice, and spirit.  the chyme, the chyle, and kindred lymphs are not bloods - the chyle especially being the material from which blood is to be made. (See further New Philosophy, vol xxxvi, pp. 245-247.)

    The four kingdoms are specifically outlined as follows in A.C. 3745, 3746, and S.D. 3036.

      A. 3746:

        "In general all these varieties bear relation to the things of the head, of the chest, of the abdomen, and to those of the members of generation; in like manner to the things which are interior and to those which are exterior in each of these."

      D. 3036:

        "I alsoperceived that they spoke concerning four provinces in the body, which are general divitions, and those communications are wornderful, to wit, the province of the genital members, the province of the abdomen or subdiaphragmatic rpovince, the thoracic where are the heart and lungs, and the province of the head which is above, and that there is into all a wonderful general influx by means of teguments, and in th the most singular things (singularissima) by means of the purest fibres. --- 1748, September 2."


     These four kingdoms intertwine with each other,  The Thoratic kingdom, by the blood-vessels, and by the motion of the lungs, branches into every part of the body.  The province of the Brain extends by the nerves and corporeal fibres into every single part.  The Abdominal province pours its chyle and lymph into the blood-stream, and the lymph washes in between even the cells of the body.  The original germ-plasm was the mother-substance of all the cells, and the Genital kingdom is therefore equally of universal influence.

      A. 4625:

        But the societies of which the whole heaven (that is, the Grtand Man) consists, are very numerous, and are more or less universal.  The more universal are those to which an entire member, organ or viscus, corresponds; and the less universal are those to which their parts, or parts of parts, correspond.  Every society is an image of the whole, for that which is unanimous is composed of so many images of itself.  As the more universal societies are images of the Grand Man, they have within them particular societies which correspond in a similar manner.  I have sometimes spoken with those who, in the soiciety into which I was sent, belonged to the province of the lungs, of the heart, the face, the tongue, the ear, the eye, and also with those who belonged to the province of the nostrils, from which last it was also given me to know their character, namely, that they are perceptions, for they had a general perception of whatever happened in the society, but not so much in particular as have those who are in the province of the eye, for the latter discriminate and view those things which are matters of perception.  It was further given me to observe that the perceptive power of the former varies in accordance with the general changes of state in the society in which they are.

    There is no definite distinction implied in the terms 'province' and 'kingdom' as applied to the Grand Man of heaven.  Each society of heaven may contain representatives of various greater provinces (A. 4625, cp. 3629).  Yet the progress of a spirit or angel is limited to the "province" to which he belongs (A. 2803).

    There are as many "provinces" as there are viscera, organs, and members, in man (A. 4931).  Each of these viscera or members corresponds to a "society" in heaven (A. 3630, 10030 enumer.).  The spirits from each of the planets form their own 'province' in the Grand Man (A 7481, re. Mars).

End of Chapter 13