Note from the author:
The below response by R, a close friend, confidant, and long-time email correspondent, is drawn from some of my comments as published in "A Perfect Faith, part II" on August 26.
Readers might want to refer back to that post before reading the remainder of this exchange.
R: What you say is fine and beautiful.
I too love to walk and "be" in Nature and receive impressions without too much thinking. Maybe I don't do it enough. But for me another essential nutrient is "thought" (to use a word which is not really right) of a certain high octane. Such "thought" is not easy to find in this world in which thinking has become degraded to such a low level and is constantly under attack (but was it ever otherwise?), and it takes a lot of time and energy to find its seeds and to plant, harvest, cook, and digest it. And it is hard to find people to share this work with.
It seems to me that such "thought" is part of Nature too, a second Nature so to say. Even to "walk" in the presence of it is thrilling. But if there were no human beings who devote themselves to its cultivation, this Nature would not exist, or would remain only potential. Its species are constantly threatened with extinction, even more so than biological species. They need more than "dirt", "water", "air", and "sun", they need something that only man can be a channel for, a kind of loving attention which, as is said in Beelzebub, comes from higher than the "sun". It is a calling.
L: Of course what you say is quite right.
That thought you speak of exists in an inner realm that corresponds to Swedenborg's visions of heaven. There is much to what he says on this subject; and the matter of correspondence between the realm of the higher — which he referred to as heaven — and the lower is critical in coming to this understanding.
I increasingly find that there is a very fine kind of nectar or wine in the digestion of one's entire life. One begins to see that specific elements in it create overtones; that particular events add undertones and critical supportive elements; and that all together, it blends into a quite extraordinary entity. If there is a psychology of man's possible evolution, it lies in this evolution of man's possible psychology: and the evolution of our psychology depends on this harmonious blending of the entire timeline of our life with all the elements in it, and the many heavenly or higher influences which enter us. If we receive them, process them, and digest them properly — which is also a kind of thought, just not the one we usually call thought — what results is an enhanced form of Being.
One presumes that there is a cosmological element to this process, which the yogis of course called the astral Being or element, but perhaps this isn't so important and can in fact distract us from the simple truth of our immediate sensation of life.