In his scientific and theological spiritual writings, Swedenborg shows that one can analyze things through a knowledge of degrees. Degrees are of two kinds: continuous degrees (e.g., the light of a rainbow), and discrete degrees (e.g., electron shells, the Planck constant). In modern terminology, we may call discrete degrees as dimensions. However depending on who you talk to, the word dimension is used in different ways depending on the construct. Thus physicists have several models which postulate more dimensions that the 3 dimensions of space plus one for time. Confusing matters further, I listened to a lecture by Harvard physicist Lisa Randall in which she defined a dimension as "any thing that can be measured" without recognizing discrete degrees of order. Mathematicians will often create dimensions to solve problems of physics, but often the mathematical formulas won't indicate what the dimension corresponds to in reality.
On the other side of the coin, so-called spiritual mystics often talk about "ascending" into a "higher dimension," but they invent their own system that has no basis in fact or revelation. They use "ascension" and "higher dimension" without defining the concepts. What do they mean by ascending into a higher dimension? What is the process? One has to filter through a lot of information which has no basis in fact or true revelation.
Emanuel Swedenborg, on the other hand, recognized that the higher spiritual planes or dimensions beyond our physical realm correspond to actual physical realities. Everything we see is symbolic of something in the spiritual world. Light is symbolic of truth. Fire is symbolic of love. The sky is symbolic of heaven. And so on. Moreover, all of reality - both physical and spiritual - can be arranged in discrete degrees of order. In his day he pointed out the discrete degrees of animal, vegetable, and mineral. In a similar fashion, in his waking visions Swedenborg saw that heaven was divided into three planes or dimensions - the celestial, the spiritual, and the natural. He would have a dream, wake up, and speak to angels who were having a conversation, whose ideas corresponded to the symbols he saw in his dream. This idea Swedenborg called the "doctrine of correspondences," and was based on discrete degrees of order. It was "the knowledge of knowledges." We now more commonly say "as above, so below."
In order to go to heaven we won't reach down to hell, but we will go down into the lower levels of particle physics. It's a bit of a "dark matter" and easy to get lost.
In the 18th century the scientific knowledge of Emanuel Swedenborg was unfortunately limited. He was aware of the degrees of animal, vegetable and mineral, and speculated on the geometric origins of fundamental particles. But now we know a lot more. Another scientist Arthur M. Young, who knew nothing of Swedenborg, began to take our knowledge and arranged it into seven degrees of order, which he publicized in his book The Reflexive Universe. It is an elegant theory, and listening to his lectures it is apparent he had the theory before he had the evidence. In a very weird twist, many years later I discovered that Arthur M. Young was involved in a paranormal research group that attempted to mentally contact supposedly "extraterrestrial" intelligences. Some of the people he was involved with also show up in some rather oddly connected web of people who were closely associated with the event surrounding the assassination of John F. Kennedy (see The Origin of the Secret Space Program). Is this where Arthur M. Young got his idea? Perhaps, he does hint at it.
Arthur M. Young unfortunately made some mistakes. so I have corrected the seven discrete degrees of order of the universe as follows (to see other blog articles on this topic look at the label "Universal Order" in the left column):
1. Space-time (or "Dimensional Reality" - see below)
2. Subatomic particles
6. Animals and Man
7. The Spiritual World (Swedenborg explains this level)
One point to note here, is that higher dimensions may manifest themselves in our lower dimensions as something completely different. For example, a three dimensional sphere could manifest itself in a two dimensional world as a point or a circle:
The point or circle would "correspond" with the position of the sphere that is intersecting with the two dimensional plane. One idea I found very interesting: a higher dimension could manifest itself as a curvature in the lower dimensions. From Five Dimensional Space:
"In 1993, the physicist Gerard 't Hooft put forward the holographic principle, which explains that the information about an extra dimension is visible as a curvature in a spacetime with one fewer dimension. For example, holograms are three-dimensional pictures placed on a two-dimensional surface, which gives the image a curvature when the observer moves. Similarly, in general relativity, the fourth dimension is manifested in observable three dimensions as the curvature path of a moving infinitesimal (test) particle."Another idea comes from the Kaluza-Klein theory which proposed an extra small "curled" spatial dimension, for a total of five dimensions. Anything that moved in this extra small "curled" dimension would manifest itself as charge, positive or negative, in our own three dimensional world. In this case a higher dimension is not a curvature whatsoever - it is rather an "elementary property" that appears in subatomic particles. I thought about this, and came up with the following proposal:
All discrete properties of elementary subatomic "particles" are a manifestation of a higher dimension.
At first it seemed like a silly idea. But the more I explored it, the more it made sense. And its actually supported by current theories in physics. The first construct I realized was: not all higher dimensions are spatial. Our experience of space is just one level. We have to get our minds out of "the Matrix" in order to understand this.
The lowest order of the universe may not be just different dimensions of space-time. I am going to describe planes of "dimensional reality" that explain the properties of subatomic particles, just as subatomic particles explain the properties of atoms. I did a broad survey of our current knowledge in this area, focusing on discrete properties of elementary subatomic particles, and came up with the following seven planes of order:
1. Spatial dimensions + time. Cosmological constant defines the energy density of vacuum space. The curves of space-time manifest as the graviton.
2. Positive or Negative Charge. Part of the electromagnetic field.
3. Mass. The mass of all particles originate from the theoretical "Higgs Field" which permeates all of space.
4. Quantum "Color Charge." "Color" is not color, but a misnomer of physicists.
5. Quantum "Flavor." The realm of quarks.
6. Energy. At the quantum level this is described by a wave function, differently from mass.
7. Intrinsic Quantum Spin. Movement of particles, the closest we get to the concept of a geometric point.
"...it is a fallacy of the merely natural sense, that there are simple substances, which are monads and atoms" (Heavenly Arcana, n. 5084)Note that what I have listed above is probably not complete or correct; we have yet to explain dark matter and energy and I am not sure where that fits. Its also possible I have split properties of a single plane into multiple planes. The only criteria I used here is that if I saw a subatomic property that was discrete, I defined that as a plane or dimension.
Lets go through each plane, one by one, for a better explanation.
That the plane of space-time is first makes sense, for space and time were one of the first things that were created at the beginning of this universe. The only discrete value I can find here that is related to space-time is the cosmological constant, which describes its rate of expansion. Space-time is the focus of Einstein's theories of relativity, where he revolutionized modern science by defining time as a higher dimension of space itself:
So is there any evidence that subatomic particles operate outside of the realm of space-time? Yes. There is a weird phenomenon known as "quantum entanglement." From Quantum Entanglement - Science Daily:
Quantum entanglement is a quantum mechanical phenomenon in which the quantum states of two or more objects have to be described with reference to each other, even though the individual objects may be spatially separated.It is so weird, Einstein could not understand it and called this phenomenon "spooky action at a distance." It is not spooky, nor is it entanglement: it means quantum states operate in a plane of existence that is outside space and time. Thus we need to define the dimensions of space-time as a single plane, so we can define other planes of dimensional reality. These other planes show up as discrete properties or states of quantum particles.
This leads to correlations between observable physical properties of the systems.
For example, it is possible to prepare two particles in a single quantum state such that when one is observed to be spin-up, the other one will always be observed to be spin-down and vice versa, this despite the fact that it is impossible to predict, according to quantum mechanics, which set of measurements will be observed.
As a result, measurements performed on one system seem to be instantaneously influencing other systems entangled with it.
But quantum entanglement does not enable the transmission of classical information faster than the speed of light.
Jumping ahead of our theory and backward in time, back in the 18th century Emanuel Swedenborg was given a startling revelation: the spiritual realms of heaven and hell, the afterlife, is outside the plane of space-time. This is what he wrote long before our theories of Einstein and quantum theory, in place of space and time there are spiritual changes of state:
"All things in heaven appear in place and in space, just as in the world, and yet angels have no notion or idea of place and space. Because this cannot but appear as a paradox, I wish to present the matter in clear light, as it is one of great importance.Note the similarity between the spiritual world and quantum physics: once outside space and time, one enters a realm where there is nothing but changes of state. This was a mind shift for quantum physicists, they had to remove from their mind the idea of "locality." Our spiritual souls reside in a plane of existence outside of space and time. You can tell if you are in heaven or hell by examining your internal state. Those who love others, and are of service, are in heaven. Those who are in hatred and jealousy from their selfish ego are in hell. Heaven and hell are places where people of similar state go. Instead of space there is love: the more closely a person is loved in the spiritual world, the closer they appear. The figure of speech, "I feel close to you" is literally true in the spiritual world. Absence of space and time can explain psychic and paranormal phenomenon, such as clairvoyance, remote viewing, telepathy, astral travel, and so on.
All going from place to place in the spiritual world is effected by change of state of the interiors, so that change of place is nothing else than change of state. In this way also I have been conducted by the Lord into the heavens, and likewise to the earths in the universe, and this as to my spirit, while the body remained in the same place. In this way all the movements of angels take place; hence they have no distances, and if not distances, neither have they spaces, but instead of them states and their changes." (Heaven and Hell, n. 191-192)
This plane I got from the Kaluza-Klein theory - if there was a small curled up dimension within space and time, it would manifest as positive or negative charge, properties of the electromagnetic field.
Photons are the force particles that operate in this plane, and as photons are the second plane of the subatomic world I have made this the second plane.
Some will ask, why is there a plane for mass? In the macro world mass is a sum total of its weight, but in the subatomic world most particles have discrete masses. Not only that, but the recent discovery of the Higgs Boson gives credence to the "Higgs field" - a universal field that permeates all of space, and all particles that have mass acquired that mass by travelling through this field:
So why not make the Higgs field simply a property of the plane of space-time? Because the presence of mass warps the space-time continuum, giving rise to gravity. Evidence of a higher dimension can show up in lower dimensions as a curvature - this indicates that the property of mass originates from a field that exists in another dimension separate from space-time.
Here is where things get a bit confusing. Quantum color charge has nothing to do with "color" and is an unfortunate misnomer given by physicists who could not think of another name in their vocabulary. Quantum color charge has to do with six states of baryonic matter and gluons, describing their interaction with the strong nuclear force:
These color charge states were arbitrarily given the names of red, blue, green, antired, antiblue, antigreen. Are the states manifestations of dimensions in this plane? It is similar to x,y,z axis in a spatial dimension, plus -x, -y, -z.
If quantum color charge was confusing, this plane of existence gets very weird. Quantum "flavors" describe different kinds of quarks that are used to compose baryonic matter, and were given names such as "charm," "strangeness," "truth" and "beauty." Combined, they form six kinds of quarks, none of which have been directly observed but only inferred from the properties of mesons and baryons which are composed of quarks. In the theory of the Eightfold Way, flavor symmetry can be mathematically described by an abstract three dimensional vector space.
At the quantum level, energy only appears in discrete states, defined by the Planck constant. In quantum physics energy is described by a wave function.
As it is discrete, and always by the Planck constant, I placed energy in a separate plane from mass which is defined from the Higgs field.
Intrinsic quantum spin is a property of most particles, and is similar to angular momentum. However physicists have noted something very strange about quantum spin - it is discrete. Particles will have a value of 0, 1/2, 1 or 2 spin. This means any particle that travels spends most of its time in another plane of existence, and is constantly "popping in and out" of our space-time plane. We can represent our space-time plane as the plane of real numbers, and this other plane as the plane of imaginary numbers:
I noted earlier that a quantum spin state can become "entangled" between multiple particles, indicating that the state of quantum spin operates outside of space-time:
Other quantum numbers for leptons are principal quantum number, azimuthal quantum number, and magnetic quantum number, which may belong to this plane as well.
This is the seventh and final plane of the seven planes of dimensional reality, and with that we can now ascend into the next higher degree of order, the world of subatomic particles (see The Spiritual Symbolism of the Four Forces). To repeat, the seven planes of subatomic particles are:
1. Graviton (gravitational force). A theoretical 2 spin particle.
2. Photon (electromagnetic force). 1 spin particle.
3. W and Z bosons (weak nuclear force). 1 spin particle. (Higgs-Boson goes here)
4. Gluons (strong nuclear force). 1 spin particle.
5. Quarks. Half spin particle. Used to build the higher level fermions.
6. Mesons, and Baryons (protons, neutrons...). Half spin particles.
7. Leptons (electrons, neutrinos...). Half spin particles.
I have described them as "planes" - but more out of avoiding the word "dimension" to avoid confusion with the construct of the dimensions of space-time. These are in fact discrete degrees of order. It is apparent, when studying quantum physics, we are seeing parts of a grand whole. But no one knows what it looks like. It is similar to the story of the blind men trying to find the elephant:
One of the most promising theories I have seen is that of Garrett Lisi - it combines all these particles with their properties, and out of emerges a very complicated geometric structure composed of circles called an "E8 Lie Group," which even accounted for the Higgs Boson before it was discovered:
Here is a representation of the E8 Lie Group with thread made by hand:
Here is another graphical video describing where the particles map into this structure, forming elegant geometric patterns:
Here is a description of electromagnetism (from An Exceptionally Simple Theory of Everything):
The fiber bundle of electromagnetism, for example, consists of circles attached to every point of spacetime. Crucially, each circle can rotate a little relative to its spacetime neighbors. The so-called connection field of a fiber bundle describes how neighboring fibers are related by these symmetry rotations. The electric and magnetic force fields filling spacetime correspond to the curvature of this fiber bundle—geometrically, the electric and magnetic fields are how the circular fibers twist over time and space.This sound similar to how the Kaluza-Klein theory solved the problem for electromagnetism, by creating an extra small curled spatial dimension that interacts with three dimensional space. However the E8 Theory gives a much more comprehensive explanation than the Kaluza-Klein theory.
The E8 theory, however, is incomplete: it does not describe all of the fermions and cannot predict the mass of particles. But I do not view this an an inherent weakness, I see this as the strength of the theory. Note that the seven planes of dimensional reality is not describing particles, but the states of particles that originate from a field or plane of existence. The confusion is coming from our construct which is insisting to find elementary particles from our Euclidean geometry. I think the geometric object of E8 Theory is showing the planes of existence in which "particles" (or energy points) manifest. The intersections of the geometry are not the particles themselves, but the states in which particles manifest from the interacting planes of this dimensional reality.
The E8 Lie Group is geometrically represented by 248 circles intersecting with a torus, more commonly known as a "doughnut." Here is a simplified view of how the circles are generated from a torus:
Now here is where things get interesting. Arthur M. Young, inventor of the Bell helicopter, out of the blue, begins working on his theory of The Reflexive Universe, which divides existence into seven planes. For some odd reason, he associates his theory with the geometric shape of a torus:
Arthur M. Young in his theory, did not have a complete list of the subatomic particles. He knew nothing of the E8 theory, which was based on a geometric object that had not yet been completely explored. He misplaced the photon in the area where space-time belongs. Here is a diagram of the overall planes of existence, showing the photon (as well as man) misplaced:
The levels of planes of existence are according to degrees of freedom. Note that in the first level, he states "position and energy uncertain." This is true, when speaking of quantum states. Quantum states are perhaps manifestations of other planes of existence outside space-time.
But the question now arises, why does Arthur M. Young associate these seven levels with the shape of a torus. Where did he get it? Oddly, it has to do with a topological property of a torus. He knew that there were seven stages of existence. He says this:
"...as a scientist, of course, I could not blindly accept this number [the number seven] merely on the basis of tradition [e.g., the seven days of creation], for, like most modern minds, I suspected that mere superstition had led to its selection, rather than any valid theoretical reason which required seven stages and not some other number. It was at this time that a friend, Harry Smith, reminded me of the well known fact that the torus, or doughnut, has a unique topology, such that a map drawn on its surface requires seven colors in order for all bordering countries to be distinguished by differences in color." (The Reflexive Universe, xxv)Topology? The borders here are significant, for in E8 theory it is the intersecting circles that give rise to properties for subatomic particles. In a footnote he writes:
"Geometry deals with measure and angles of a surface, but topology deals with different classes of surface... This should be important because the abstractions of mathematics have often proved to apply to real situations; the imaginary numbers are invaluable in equations which deal with waves or oscillation; the curved space of Riemann gave Einstein the basis for relativity. Toroidal space-time could be next."What a lucky guess! If E8 theory proves to be correct, it would confirm Arthur M. Young's guess out of the blue. But is this out of the blue? He admits he does not have the physical theory, and yet repeatedly he comes back to the torus.
As "above, so below." As it turns out there is a Three-torus model of the universe, otherwise known as the "Bagel Theory" which proposed in 1984 that the shape of the universe was a doughnut:
Perhaps completely independent of Arthur M. Young, perhaps not, beginning in the 1960s and 1970s a series of mysterious letters appeared in Europe claiming to come from a group known as "Ummites" who said they were extraterrestrial humans visiting earth unknown to us. Several of the letters contained scientific concepts, as well as religious knowledge, that were ahead of their time. I discussed some of these in The Extraterrestrial Christianity of UMMO. In order to remain anonymous, they told one of their contacts to declare the whole affair a "psychological experiment" that he made up. Nevertheless, there are these letters which contain very accurate scientific predictions. A set of these letters concern space-time. They were surprised at our primitive Euclidean concept of space-time:
- "When our brothers arrived in Earth year 1950 on OYAGAA (Earth), and after having learned the French language and gone for the first time to the library located at 58 rue Richelieu in Paris, they were surprised to read in the Earth mathematics texts in the library that, for instance, concepts like the POINT, the LINE and the PLANE continued to be considered by you as simple abstractions of an underlying reality of the UNIVERSE."
"This rigid model of the mathematics of Space does not satisfy a number of current physicists at all: that is true despite the fact that many others continue to accept the existence of this SPACE independent of the matter and the energy it contains. Then you invented another thing: the Space of the Phases. For you real space contains subatomic particles (another error as we will see further)."After describing our current theories, they then describe their own:
"We, on the contrary, know that the WAAM (cosmos) is composed of a network of IBIZOO UU. We conceive SPACE as an associated set of angular factors "They included a diagram like this:
Angles, of course, originate from circles. Circles are intersections with a torus. Just as what Arthur M. Young and Garrett Lisi proposed for the model of space-time and subatomic particles. The Ummites stress this point: for them, a "dimension" is an angular magnitude:
"For us the line in space does not exist, as we explain further, so the concept of OAWOO (dimension) takes on a different meaning for us. Such dimensions are associated not with scalar magnitudes (as the Earth people think), but on the contrary with angular magnitudes. (It is curious to note, for instance, that in their blindness, the physicists of the Earth do not give an angle a dimensional characteristic.)"Interestingly, Arthur M. Young describes the seven levels of his theory as based on degrees of freedom. He compares degrees of freedom with a circle representing different phases for changes of a position:
In other words, in his theory Arthur M. Young represents the different stages as phases of angular magnitude. Just as described in the letters of the Ummites. Arthur M. Young attempted to extend this concept further to other states of being:
Again, different states of being can essentially be represented by angular magnitude. However I dont agree with all the states Arthur M. Young came up with here, Emanuel Swedenborg has a more well thought out system of spiritual stages. Where did Arthur M. Young get this idea? From his invention of the Bell helicopter? Or somewhere else? Maybe its just a coincidence.
To proceed with the Ummite letter, they warn not to associate the concept of angular magnitude with the concept of aether, and they speak about frame of reference for the axis:
"You should not either identify such a space with the ancient concept of ETHER thrown out by the theory of relativity, since the NETWORK OF IBOZOO UU is not at all an elastic medium in which are immersed the atoms of bodies.
You could also ask us: in relation to what universal reference axis are directed the angles of the IBOZOO UU? Naturally NOT WITH ANY. There is no axis of reference in the WAAM for that would suppose a real line in the COSMOS, and such a line, as we indicated, is a FICTION.We can only refer to the angle of one of the secondary axes of an IBOZOO UU compared to another, arbitrarily adopted as a reference. We inform you that you should not imagine that subatomic particles are immersed inside this set of IBOZOO UU. Quite simply because any particle (electron, meson or graviton) is necessarily an IBOZOO UU directed in a particular way compared to the others."Throughout the letters they use their own words for some concepts, and not all of them have been defined. Here is another interesting reference to MASS as another dimension:
"In conclusion : we also conceive of a space of N DIMENSIONS. MASS, for example, is also a " curve of this multidimensional space ". It is the same for DISTANCES within the WAAM. Only our concepts of magnitude, curvature and distance are radically different from those of the Earth people."Thus the letter confirms that mass is its own dimension. This was written long before confirmation that the Higgs field existed through the discovery of the Higgs boson. The Ummite letters stress that all of these dimensions are ordered by our external senses into something our brain understands, but our sensory perceptions cannot comprehend this reality. It can be represented geometrically, but that geometry is but a representation - a "correspondence" - to these higher dimensions. They describe these angular magnitude as a connected series of circles or spheres, which again can possibly be generated from the torus of E8 theory. At one point they mention a hypersphere:
"If we consider a HYPERSPHERE with N dimensions, we can conceive as many other OAWOO (RADIUS VECTORS) as there are dimensions."Here is a geometric representation of a 4D hypersphere, that when rotated often forms - you guessed it - a torus:
From About the Hypersphere:
"Today, cosmologists say that the universe of relativity and quantum physics can best be understood when seen as a torus, or donut shape. A universe containing black holes, white holes and "wormholes" conforms best to this model. And a torus has the same formula (2pi2r3) as the HYPERSPHERE.From the Ummo letters, they again stress that subatomic particles are not particles:
As a model of the universe, the HYPERSPHERE shows how things emerge in time and are enfolded back into fabric of the universe. You can experience this by rotating your HYPERSPHERE through its center."
"What you call a subatomic particle, like a neutrino, a meson or an antiproton, with various attributes such as mass, charge and spin, are only multiple orientations of an IBOZOO UU. If the Earth physicists continue to spend their time on detection, evaluation and classification of all the possible particles, it will take them a billion years to finish since this classification is as sterile as giving a name to each infinitesimal angle under which we can see a star over the course of a day."I can keep quoting from these letters, but they will continually repeat: the properties we observe in subatomic particles are merely angular momentums of dimensions we cannot see with the senses, and can only approximate in math and geometry.
So what do the physical dimensions have to do with the higher spiritual dimensions? Everything, for these physical dimensions that we experience every day correspond to the spiritual dimensions that our souls progress through. What are the properties of these higher dimensions? These are things that we will abstractly know generally as "good" and "truth." In the highest sense, Good and Truth is God Himself. In the same manner as physical dimensions, good and truth progress downward towards us, until we receive and reflect a certain aspect of good and truth. Good and truth are not properties of the self, but rather good and truth are properties received by the self in the will and thought that originate from Divine influx into our lower dimensions.
In the Christian revelation, God is known as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Here, we must recognize that defining this Trinity as a trinity of three beings is the result of the primitive minds of its time in the 4th century, born in a culture that was polytheistic. It should be seen as different planar dimensions of one Divine being in Jesus Christ, for in each person there is a trine of soul, body, and spirit. The Father is the invisible God that no one can see or comprehend; the Son is His visible form we can experience directly, and the Holy Spirit is the outpouring of the Divine into us. We see this in physics: there is an invisible probability wave we can't observe, but it collapses into a point or the visible form, and the progression of this form produces a field around it.
Put in another way, the Trinity can be expressed as end, cause and effect. This is reflected in the human form as our intention or will, our thought, and the action that is the outcome of our intent and thoughts to carry out that intention.
These higher level spiritual concepts are simply reflected into these lower dimensions that we can understand. So lets take the first three planes of dimensional reality. The plane of space-time, with its cosmological constant causing expansion, represents purpose or intent. The purpose here is to create something. The plane of charge, in which light operates, represents cause or thought. We can see this in the human form - for all of our actions, before they become action, are expressed in thought. How is thought communicated to our body? Through the electromagnetic impulse. There is correspondence with electromagnetism, and light, with thought. As Jesus was the Divine truth incarnate, He thus said "I am the light of the world." The end effect comes about in the plane of mass. This is the end result, the effect, the outcome of action.
The process of spiritual ascension is defined in the seven days of creation, which I mentioned in the previous blog post (see The Seven Practices of Peace). It has nothing to do with the creation of the world, but rather with the creation of a new spiritual being destined to become an angel in heaven. They are described in extensive detail in Swedenborg's work, Heavenly Arcana. The first state is described actually before the first day:
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." (Gen. 1:1-2)This represents the lowest spiritual dimension. So what is it? It is simple: the lowest spiritual dimension is the LOVE OF SELF, or THE SELFISH EGO. The ego has no true love, it loves itself. This is the formless void. It is supported by falsehood, this is the darkness on the face of the deep. This is the spiritual state that is represented by the empty formless darkness of space-time.
I mention this first, because so many eastern and New Age religions look to see God in the self. They elevate self pride and this is a step backwards. It is false, and is actually the error committed by the ancient antediluvian race. This first step of spirituality is to not recognize God in self, but to recognize the evil and falsehood in one self. This acknowledgment is the first step, and this brings us to the second stage:
"And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness." (Gen. 1:3-4)This is the step in which one is introduced into the knowledge of good and truth. One begins to separate and reject the falsehoods - the darkness - that one used to hold true. And of course we see in the second plane the force of electromagnetism, which is mediated by light. There is thus a correspondence between the stages of spiritual development and the different planes of order in physical existence. Without knowledge of the truth, one cannot be reformed by the truth. It is from a knowledge of spiritual truth that one can fight against the falsehood of the selfish ego.
The above process of reformation concerns that of regenerating the selfish will, into something spiritual that is a recipient of good and truth from the Divine that is acknowledged to be outside of one self. The other process of spiritual ascension is mental, and this involves prayer, slowing one's breath, and withdrawing from the senses. For the senses immerse our soul into these lower dimensions. Withdraw one's senses from these outer dimensions, one can then get in touch with the inner spiritual dimensions:
"When man is elevated toward interiors, he then comes out of the gross sensual light into a milder light, and at the same time is withdrawn from the influx of scandals and defilements, and is brought nearer to what is of justice and equity, because nearer to the angels who are with him, thus nearer to the light of heaven. This elevation from sensuals was known to the ancients, even to the Gentiles, therefore their wise men said that when the mind is withdrawn from sensuals, it comes into an interior light, and at the same time into a tranquil state, and into a certain heavenly blessedness; hence also they drew conclusions as to the immortality of the soul. Man is capable of being yet more interiorly elevated, and the more interiorly, into the clearer light he comes, and at length into the light of heaven, which light is nothing else than wisdom and intelligence from the Lord." (Heavenly Arcana, n. 6313)Withdrawal from the selfish ego, and withdrawal from the external senses and thus materialism, are the two processes by which one can spiritually ascend into the higher dimensions of love and truth. It is simple, simple enough for a child, and anyone can do it once they follow the path. The path is to fight the selfish ego, resist evils as sin, and escape from the "Matrix":