3 Suns and Planets


NATURAL SUNS have an internal, or soul, and a natural envelope or body; and their internal is the beginning, their bodies being an accretion added later. After they have been brought into their full and ultimate form, the two act as one cause on the plane of effects, as the soul and body of man.

The internal of natural suns is a pure active space of the Spiritual Sun, together with the first active proceedings or radiant belts from it. This internal exists primitively as a vast and apparently vacuous abyss, but a spherical abyss of living force, surrounded by the foam structure of the universal aura.

This vast sun-internal or star soul is in a perpetual animatory motion, a most eminent cardiac and pulmonic motion which God Man acts from Himself into the forms of universal creation. Therefore, the origin of this motion is living, supremely living, since it is from the life and action immediately from God Man Himself.

In this internal are the seeds of suns and solar systems, and the volume of the universal aura is as the common mother by which all suns and worlds are produced. Thus the enveloping body of suns is taken from the matrix or mother. This body presents itself in the shape of a sort of double radiant envelope, composed of volumes of third and fourth finites. These latter are the primitives of the finer and grosser members of the metallic family in nature.

When the internal or Spiritual Sun has at length formed such a body about itself, it thereafter acts its animatory motion into its own enveloping body ; and that envelope, receiving this animatory motion, in turn acts from itself a derivative animatory motion; even as we are taught that an internal or soul always acts into and upon its body, and the body then acts from itself. This derivative animatory motion is of a slower rhythm, more bounded and finited, and of far greater breadth of diiference between expansion and constriction. Thus it is able to act upon and affect large, gross, less elastic bullae, and to reduce the more non-living forms into sympathetic reciprocations and expansions, such as the fine animations of the pure spiritual centre or Spiritual Sun itself cannot do; even as a nerve cannot act upon a stone immediately, but only by means of its grosser body or instrument, a muscle.

Suns are thus bodied about with an envelope of something like a flamy metallic vapor, the splendor of which we see as fire. This flamy fire in its substantiates is the very beginning of what we may call the natural. The third and fourth finites which constitute it are in a primal freedom of activity beyond earthly comparison. But as a whole this envelope is under an equilibrium of pressure from the activity of the Spiritual Sun within and the reacting aura without which condenses, presses, and steadies it, almost into a viscous mass. This is where metallic primitives have their rise and origin, and what Swedenborg teaches of the primitive metallic nature of the fiery envelope of the sun has been observed by the spectrum.

First and second substantial, the finites which constitute the two radiant belts below the Spiritual Sun, are framed immediately from the primitives of that Sun, by means of their own conflowing and conglobation. They arise directly from the Spiritual Sun, belong to the whole universe, and are framed into the bullular structure of the universal aura. The latter is thus of the very essence of the Spiritual Sun.

THIRD AND FOURTH SUBSTANTIALS OR FINITES are formed in the immediate vicinage of suns, just on the border between their active souls or centers and the surrounding volumes of first and second auras; and they are formed by condensations and compressions of the foam-texture of these auras. The volume of third and fourth finites, thus formed about a given sun, belongs not to the universe, but to one particular solar system, and serves for its individual uses and materia. Fifth finites, however, come into existence only around the individual planetary masses. Each local volume of fifth finites, therefore, is confined near the surface of its own parent planet, and is appropriate to the uses and grosser materia of that particular planet.

FIFTH FINITES are the active primitives or progenitors of the sixth and seventh families of the periodic system of chemical elements, that is, the oxygen-sulphur and halogen families; for Swedenborg says that the fifth finites are the elementary primitives of our earthly or culinary fire, and that they enter chiefly into those angular acid salts, derived by the functional activity of the vegetable kingdom into the interstices of the bullae of the fourth elementaries; and by which the venous blood is changed into arterial in the lungs. This volatile aerial salt, floating in the bullular interstices of the aerial elementary, is derived from the soil into the interstices of the aerial elementary, through free vegetative activity by means of the current of vaporous exhalation from the leaves. These finites are also the primitives composing one of the two substances entering into the structure of the water unit, and are also the primitives which enter into one of the two constituents of the sea or halogen salts.

Since the fifth finites originated strictly at the surface of the planets, and began to be formed there only when the planets were at a great distance from the sun, none of the derivatives of the fifth finites can be formed in the enveloping body of the sun. This fact, viz., that the primitives of the sixth and seventh periodic families of chemistry exist in the vicinage of the planets, and not in the envelope of the sun, has been independently discovered within the last generation by the aid of the spectroscope. The reason whv the sun is without these elements so common upon the earth, on any supposition that the earth mass was itself part of the common belt of the sun, is one of the puzzles of modern research. Swedenborg gives the clue to its cause, in his teaching as to the origin of the primitives of the metallic families immediately about the solar center, and the origin of the larger, grosser primitive substantiates, as those of the oxygen-sulphur and halogen families, about the planets.

ORIGIN OF THE THIRD FINITES. The third finites, which form the envelopes of the bullae of the second aura, are prepared by compression from the primal aura. The compression of the bullae of the first aura is effected at the expense of their active centers. The first finites, active in these nuclear centers, escape, leaving the empty envelopes of second finites, which by compression then form the third finites, ready to be used to form the crust or envelope of the particle of the second aura.

The first substantial or finites, which form the active center of the primal aura particle, and which escape on the compression of this particle, are for the most part eventually compounded or brought together to form second substantial active, and very many of them enter the internal active space of a sun. For second and first substantial can move without mutual interference in the same field, if the space is not confined.

The third grade of finites or substantial thus come into existence by compression of the foam substance of the primal aura. They are the first of the finites to be formed by the instrumentality of compression. They possess the same vortex ring figure as the first and second. They have the like vortico-spiral internal circulation, and the like conatus and potency of spontaneous activity and orbital motion; but of a lessened velocity and a wider orbit. Their interior texture is relatively coarse and comparatively open.

These third finites are produced in innumerable volumes about the primitive internal of a solar center. Of them is formed the enveloping body of a sun. They always remain in the envelope as a part of it. They never enter the internal space of higher power. Their entrance is guarded against by the very coarseness of their texture. ‘ They are a discrete degree below, and, as we have seen, Nature properly begins with them.

THE BULLAE OF THE SECOND AURA. And now new bullae are formed with active centers similar to the active center of the sun itself, and with a similar circumference or envelope, — first and second finites active forming the active center or soul of these bullae, while third finites passive form their bounding envelopes. These are the bullae of the second aura. Their very endeavor and motion is vortical; they are carried out from the sun along the streaming vortex gyre of the primal aura; and they are produced in such abundance that they at length form a volume of as great breadth as the breadth of the solar system which is then to be. This volume of the second or magnetic aura is itself in the shape of a vast vortex ring, lying all about the sun, and of which that sun is the center, a volume revolving in rotary wheel and gyre forever. This is the great circumambient atmosphere of the sun, constituting its own aura and vortex, the second aura, the first of the natural.

FOURTH FINITES. From the bullae of this grosser aura, the second, in turn and after a like fashion, condensations are formed in the immediate vicinage of the sun ; for the law by which creation descends by successive degrees of compression and composition, continues its operation. The result is finites of the next degree, or fourth finites. Of these finites an enormous passive volume was formed about the sun in the epoch of the primal birth of the system. This chaotic volume of fourth finites at that period was increased and concreted until it formed a dense darkening crust around the sun, of incredible thickness and resistance. Still it was whirled and rotated about the sun, by the general wheeling motion of the vortex of the second aura of which it is practically a part. And this perpetual rotating motion continued, until the centrifugal whirl of the vast stiffening shell resulted in its disruption. Then were formed three kindls of astronomical bodies.

1 Where masses of the envelope were rounded into simple balls, the solid planets were formed.

2 Where the outer side of the envelope curled over outwards, and conglobated like a thick envelope round a sort of nucleus of the aura of the vortex, the non-solid fluctuant satellites came into existence.

3 Where the inner passive dense crust was driven outward by the expansive force of the active center, the edges of its broken fragments curled over and globed about masses of the inner solar space, forming great expansile bullae like pseudo suns. These are the vast solar bubbles or sun spots, sure to burst as soon as the outside pressure lessens.

Sufficiently immense for this threefold use was the primal mass of the first bodiment of the sun. In the epoch after the formation and breaking up of the first dense envelope, the body of the sun was formed again for its age-long uses. And again the epochal story of the period of compression and disruption is rhythmically told in tensions and releases of twelve year periods. But never again does the solar envelope grow so thick and stiff that it ceases to vibrate, and darkens the sim ; nor ever again does it attain to anything like the thickness adequate to the making of planetary masses. Only at periods is the surface tossed; magnetic storms of irregular current stream in the vortex; and the new sun-spots, taking birth and origin on the inner side of the envelope, make their way through, until, as they touch a less dense region, they break, like the vast bubbles they are; and toss their films of metallic fire into the plane of the vortex volume about the sun’s equator, there to add their quota to the meteoric dust, shining in that far region like moths in a sunbeam; and in the long ages giving rise to the lens-shaped ray of that serene fairy illumination we call the zodiacal light.

THE PLANETARY MASSES. First in importance are the planetary masses or primitive earths. These are spherical masses of the materia of the solar crust, the fourth substantial, and can be formed only where the ring of that materia is thickest. They are homogeneous all through. They have no rarefied elastic central space, but are as solid as anything can be, and, if anything, are more compressed at their core than at their surface.

These resistant solid globes, though spherical, are yet flattened at their poles, the reasons for which we may here briefly consider.

Since primitive earths are made of substantial or finites; since finites of every grade have a vortex-ring configuration, and a conatus to circulo-spiral motion; since finites of such figure can be more closely packed when they are set in orderly arrangement, flattened pole to flattened pole; since this is the arrangement into which they bring themselves when greatly crowded and in sufficient volume ; since around the starry suns the vast masses of fourth finites find themselves under the required conditions of mutual pressure ; and since the finites composing these immense globular masses will arrange themselves in such Rouleaux, pole to pole ; therefore, the result will be a vast ball emulating the flattened discoid shape of the constituent finites. The primitive earth mass thus became as it were a huge imag? of the finites entering into its composition. And it is worthy to be noted as remarkable, that the close set rouleaux of finites, though compacted into such a mass, yet carry on a slow oppressed circulation, from an inherent conatus to it which is retained even in the dark moveless condensation of its core. By virtue of this fact, the great globes as a whole have in them a striving to an orbital motion of their own, emulous of the circulo-spiral orbit in which the finites themselves run.

The single finites possess native orbits of small diameters, inconceivably small. But the earth mass images of finites have native orbits of millions of miles ; the orbit being proportioned to the size of the body. Therefore, the great earth masses, solid, resistant all through, are yet emulous finites or substantial, and have in themselves the conatus and power of running forever in an orbital circulospiral path.

If such bodies pass from the vicinage of the sun, outwards along the lines of its revolving vortex, to a situation where the pressures of the surrounding ether-foam are less, to a situation where the aura around them is more rarefied than near the sun, no abrupt or disastrous consequences can befall them. For instance, they cannot explode, since this does not happen to solid bodies. The only thing that can happen to them, on coming to a region of less density, is that the layers of finites on their immediate surface will tend to free themselves, and, in clouds like vapor from the water, will rise, circle, and curl about the solid surface of the planets.

The part which these freed streams of fourth finites play will be taken up in the later study of the formation about each planet of two terrestrial atmospheres, the third and fourth discrete degrees in the atmospheric series, or the third and fourth auras, which are the ether and the aerial elementary.

THE SATELLITES. Second in importance, in the breaking up of the primal solar crust, are the satellites; and, third, the sun spots. These, unlike the planetary masses, or earths, are not solid bodies. They are hollow; they are like bubbles or immense bullular forms, denser on the outside than they are within. They are bodies, therefore, whose internal structure predicts possible abrupt and grave changes, so soon as they shall be carried beyond the dense environment, the strong outside pressures, of the locality where they are brought forth, to a more rarefied region of the solar vortex.

The primitive earth masses, as we have said, were formed in the midst of the thickest portions of the ring or belt around the sun, when its substance fell in together upon itself. But on the outer side of that belt, away from the solar center, facing towards the outer space, another type of body, the satellite, is formed. When the great encrusting belt is broken, the vortex pressing inward tends to catch great sheets of the viscous metallic matter, and bend them inward, so that they belly in toward the sun like great sails. These great bellying sheets, by virtue of their viscous state, and the proneness of all their constituent finites to press towards circling orbits of motion, will tend to drop their edges together, to meet, to close about the volume of the vortex aura caught within it. The result will be the formation of a vast hollow cosmic ball, consisting of a more or less thick crust or envelope of fourth finites which enclose a great volume of the second aura. Nor will these new bodies have a polar flattening as the planets have, but will be perfectly round by reason of the equal pressure extended in every direction by the enclosed elastic bullae. Such are the satellites, according to Swedenborg.

THE SUN SPOTS. And now as to the sun spots, — their point of origin is on the inner side of the great encrusting girdle of the sun, when this girdle breaks up ; that is, on the concave side, facing the active star center. Here the force of the central space acts immediately upon it. Therefore, when it gives way, great sheets of the crust on the inner side will be bellied and driven out, and the viscous metallic matter curling back over its edges dropping together and meeting, will close in about the volume of fiery second finites driven against them.

Thus arise great cosmic bodies, hollow, with enveloping crusts of metallic primitives, surrounding fiery active high-pressure centers of second substantial. They are thus vast cosmic bubbles arising at the junction of the star center with its enveloping crust or girdle ; and their state is necessarily that of bombs highly charged. And so soon as the wheeling vortex carries them out of the region of condensation pressure, they have in their constitution the inevitable conditions of instant expansion and explosion. Such are the bodies to which the phenomena of sun spots are due, according to Swedenborg.

FURTHER DEVELOPMENT OF PLANETS AND SATELLITES. All the types of bodies, formed from the viscous metallic crust of the sun, planets, satellites, and sun bubbles or sun spots, continue to rotate about the sun, even as the substance from which they were formed rotated about the sun before they were shaped.

Gathered up by the aura-flow, they swing at first round and round the sun in the plane in which they were formed; but little by little, at every circling round, their wheeling motion enlarges its diameter; and they are imperceptibly carried away from the region where they were formed, where the outside pressures are great, to regions where the aura about them is less*compressed, less dense, more and more

During this progress from the center of the vortex, not much can happen to the genuine planets, the resistant solid masses of the primitive earths. They will grow smaller as they go, in proportion as the outer layers of their materia are lifted and wound off, in the weaving of their enveloping garments of third and fourth ether. This we have already indicated, and shall return to it in detail.

With the satellites a different possibility comes into play. Satellite forms, as we have seen, are shell-like crusts of viscous metallic primitives enclosed around a volume of the vortex-ether, the second or magnetic aura which makes the vortex of each sun, or solar system.

Now when forms of such constitution are borne outward to regions where the surrounding volume of second aura is under less pressure and more rarefied, then, in proportion as the volume of second aura outside the shell of the satellite is lessened, the volume of second aura inside the satellite will expand, or strive to do so,, until it is in the same state of density as the aura outside. So long as the crusting substance is viscous, this will lead only to a gradual enlargement of the satellite, as it travels away from the vicinage of the sun. And if the crust is thick enough and yielding enough, to accommodate itself to the strain without breaking, nothing further will happen. But if the outer crust grows too thin in places, or too stiff to yield, vents will be opened in the crust like safety valves, permitting sufficient of the inner volume of aura to escape, in order to equalize the pressure of the aura without and the aura within. In that case, the crust of the satellite will probably wrinkle back, puckered and folded, like an apple when half its juice has evaporated from it. This seems to be what has happened to our moon, judging by its appearance.

There is, too, always a possibility that these opening vents and cracks may be so large, and so abruptly made, that the whole crust of the satellite will break up into a dozen pieces ; in which case there would no longer be any satellite, but there would be a dozen little asteroids or meteors, swarming and swimming around on the tide of the vortex,

The opening of vents in the crust of a satellite wou!d not militate against the existence of human beings upon it. The satellites are embosomed in the auras, which bathe them about and touch them on every side; and wherever the auras are, there is life, and formative life.

The substance of the satellite crust is of the mineral kingdom, and sends out continual radio-emanations in impalpable clouds. Wherever these are, there exist the substances out of which the life-formative fashions to itself bodies of use. Given, therefore, the life-formative of the foam auras, and the radio-emanent spheres of the mineral kingdom, vegetation can begin. And when vegetation once begins, new radio-emanent spheres or clouds of effluvia are sent forth from this new kingdom, pro- viding thereby for the next grand stage, the creation of the animal kingdom. It is literally thus that creation does begin on any planet, and so does it climb from clod to plant, from plant to beast and man. There needs to be first but the life -formative, the living auras, as the active; and for its passive the stuff and substance of the satellites and planets, with their radio-emanent spheres of particles, indefinitely ponderable, but capable of being organized into forms of use by the inflowing and encompassing auras. And we would note in addition a remarkable fact, that when such a sphere has been given forth from an organic form, the sphere remains even though the parent form itself dies. The oxygen salt, volatile, aerial, which the plant gave off last year, the animals breathes to-day. Thus do the living auras, framing vegetative bodies from the radio-emanations of the mineral kingdom, prepare for animal and human life upon the earth ; and thus do we see imaged in nature itself immortal life and immortal use in a higher sphere, after the original form is dead.

The supremely human formative, the first or celestial aura, is universal; and thus prior to suns and systems. The second aura must also come into existence, before the satellites and planets can be created, for these exist by the compression of the particles of that aura. They are, in fact, afloat in it, carried on its solar tide. The third aura, the vegetable formative, begins to be woven about the satellites and planets, as soon as they leave the sun. The aerial elementary follows next in the series. Then water. Then the stuff of the mineral kingdom, the very earth crust of the planet or satellite.

All these are now at hand and ready for vegetation to begin ; and as soon as it begins, the planets and satellites begin to give off, into the interstices of the aerial elementary, spheres of inert, angular particles, indefinitely ponderable, which are the primitives of the whole family of oxygen and sulphur, and on down the list. Nothing more is needed, one might almost say, but the dust of a world, and the living hands of the bullular auras to conjoin that poor dust to their own vital motions; nothing more is needed but the unition of the passive of the earth’s crust to the active of the auras, a salt to a bullular form, and the framing of these two into a concrete unit, reactant to the Divine, — able to bring forth therefrom spheres for present and for future use; for the sphere remains, as we have said, even though the parent form itself was broken long ago.

The Satellites, finally, as we have shown, are bodies of a bubble constitution, — not the constitution of a bubble or bulla with an active self-directive center, as the bullae of the auras, but with an atmospheric or passive center, their crust enclosing a volume of the second aura. This bullular constitution of the satellites seems to account for their behavior in their relation with the planets.

A body of such a constitution, variable and elastic within, cannot serve as an object upon which the pressures of a surrounding sphere concenter, able to react to them as a stable fulcrum, such as the unyielding solid planets are ; thus they cannot remain stably in place, as a pure passive subject of converging pressures ; nor are they able as little suns to serve as the active soul or parent of a developing system. This relegates them, for their freedom and their existence, to occupy the circumambient sphere of some other center.

Author: Lillian G. Beekman From AN OUTLINE OF SWEDENBORG’S COSMOLOGY (1907)