The New Philosophy Vol 107 No 1-2, January-June 2004
“There are more arcana in the doctrine of reflection than in any other whatever.” This arresting statement is found in number 733 of the Spiritual Diary1 by Emanuel Swedenborg. It seems to challenge the generally accepted view, for we have been prone to think of reflection as merely one form, among many, of mental activity. We would ordinarily place it in the same category as sensation, memory, imagination and thought. Why should it contain more arcana than any of these? Are there not other doctrines that are of even greater importance? Consider creation, redemption and glorification; or influx, providence and regeneration. Must these not have an even broader application than the doctrine of reflection?