The Essence of God: 1. God is love itself and wisdom itself.

These two constitute his essence. All the infinite things in God and all the infinite things radiating from him relate to two essentials: love and wisdom. Our earliest ancestors saw this relationship. In the sequence of ages that then followed, however, people removed their minds from heaven, so to speak, and plunged them into worldly and bodily preoccupations, with the result that people became unable to see this relationship. They began not to know what love is in its essence, and therefore what wisdom is in its essence. They forgot that without a form there is no love, because love operates in forms and through them.

God is substance itself and form itself, and is therefore the first and only substance and form, whose essence is love and wisdom. All things that were made, were made by God [John 1:3]. It follows, therefore, that it was from love by means of wisdom that God created the universe and each and every thing in it. As a result, divine love together with divine wisdom is present in every single entity that has been created. Furthermore, love is the essence that not only forms all things but also bonds and unites them to each other; therefore love is the force that holds all things in connection.

Countless things in the world could be used to illustrate this. For example, there are two essential and universal things through which each and every thing on earth comes into existence and continues to exist: the heat and the light of the sun. They are present in the world because they correspond to divine love and wisdom. The heat that radiates from the sun in the spiritual world is in fact essentially love, and its light is essentially wisdom.

As further illustration, take the two essential and universal things through which human minds come into existence and continue to exist: the will and the intellect. The mind of each of us consists of these two things. They are present and operative in each and every detail of the mind. This is because the will is a vessel and a dwelling place for love, and the intellect is a vessel and a dwelling place for wisdom. Will and intellect therefore correspond to the divine love and the divine wisdom from which they originate.

For another illustration I could use the two essential and universal things through which human bodies come into existence and continue to exist: the heart and the lungs, or the systolic and diastolic motions of the heart and the respiration of the lungs. It is a known fact that these two pairs of motions are at work in each and every detail of our bodies. This happens because the heart corresponds to love and the lungs to wisdom, a correspondence that is fully demonstrated in Angelic Wisdom about Divine Love and Wisdom, published in Amsterdam.

Countless examples in both worlds, spiritual and physical, can convince us that love produces or begets all forms like a bridegroom and husband, by means of wisdom as a bride and wife. For now I will mention this example alone: the whole angelic heaven is arranged into the form it takes, and is kept in it, by divine love acting through divine wisdom.

People who attribute the creation of the world to any other force than divine love acting through divine wisdom, and who do not realize that these two qualities constitute the essence of God, descend from the sight of reason to the mere sight of the eye. They embrace nature as the creator of the universe; as a result they conceive monsters and give birth to phantoms. The thoughts they have are false, they use them as the basis of their reasoning, and the conclusions they reach are eggs with night birds inside. People like this cannot be called minds; they are eyes and ears without an intellect, or thoughts without a soul. They speak of colors as if they could exist without light; of trees as if they could exist without having been seeds; of all things on earth as if they could exist without the sun. Such people designate things begun as beginnings, and things caused as causes. They turn everything upside down, put their reason to sleep, and see dreams.

from True Christianity, Section 37


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