Who is Emanuel Swedenborg? We just held the 18th Mystical Art and Talent Show for the 9th year in a row at a 109 year old gothic chapel founded in his name, it might be nice to know. Swedenborg (1688-1772) was a genius Swedish scientist and engineer turned religious philosopher who has been a favorite of artists and mystics for centuries; D. T. Suzuki famously called him the Buddha of the North, Ralph Waldo Emerson listed him among the 50 great men of history, and Carl Jung closely studied his works. Not many know that Swedenborg was one of the two master spirit guides, the other being the Roman physician Galen, who tutored the founder of Spiritualism, Andrew Jackson Davis, in the early 19th century in the Catskills of New York State to prepare for the arrival of modern spirit communication.
The Cambridge Swedenborg chapel in particular is in the neighborhood of many such as William James, who wrote the "Varieties of Religious Experience" in 1902 and whose father was a huge Swedenborg fan. The chapel was visited and blessed by the Dalai Lama more recently for providing a home for the ceremonies and classes of Tibetan refugees for many years before such things were cool. We hold our own events there because we were invited to by Spirit for reasons that become delightfully obvious with a little investigation. I am enormously grateful to Swedenborg's presence and impact which continues to shape the coming utopia of this golden planet, which I call the New Earth and he called the New Jerusalem.
Here's a nice podcast I came across summarizing Swedenborg's amazing life and contributions ahead of his time to both the hard sciences and advanced spirituality. If you get into Swedenborg's writings, they are enormously poetic and wise in the language of his time. Many volumes comment directly on Biblical symbolism, "Heaven and Hell" gives a wonderful overview of the cosmic order, "Other Earths in the Universe" (or similarly translated title) is a spirit tour of other planets as their peoples relate to humanity's place in the universe, and "The Dream Journal" is Swedenborg's bravely honest diary from the year 1744 in which he turned his scientific mind to his dreams to find angels and ascended masters guiding him to his own second coming, which he saw as the personal angelic transformation which everyone will enjoy sooner or later. Swedenborg's spiritual eyes were opened so that he might function equally in both the material and energetic worlds, he was a great shaman in the most wonderful and classic sense.
Podcast on Emanual Swedenborg in the series Stuff you Missed in History Class: http://castroller.com/podcasts/StuffYouMissed/1579238-Who%20was%20Emanuel%20Swedenborg
And if you want to attend the church, what is a Swedenoborgian service like? Kind of like a cross between Unitarian and Episcopalian perhaps, in other words a structured traditional Christian ritual with very open-minded references to wide-ranging spiritual philosophies, plus very good music. Wonderful open-hearted free-thinking people go there for various personal reasons and you will be most welcome too. So if you can just expect it to not be New Agey or Spiritualist or whatever, it is its own lovely experience, then you may well enjoy more value on your own path, particularly if like myself you have strangely fond childhood memories of relating to church like no one else and wishing someday to revisit a more mystical and less judgmental version of Christianity.