Thursday, April 24, 2008

Dealing With Different Points of View

In the Heavenly Doctrines there is the incredible teaching that if people are in charity it's not a problem if they see things differently. In addition to making this point Arcana Coelestia 1834:2 also mentions certain things that people's ideas should not go against. It's useful to have passages like this to refer to when trying to decide when to pursue a disagreement further and when to let it go.
When a church is raised up by the Lord, it is in the beginning blameless, and the one then loves the other as his brother, as is known from the case of the primitive church after the Lord's coming. All the church's children then lived together as brethren, and likewise called one another brethren, and loved one another; but in process of time charity grew cold and vanished away and as it vanished, evils succeeded, and together with these falsities insinuated themselves. Hence came schisms and heresies, which would never be the case if charity were regnant and alive, for then they would not even call schism schism, nor heresy heresy, but a doctrinal matter in accordance with each person's opinion; and this they would leave to each person's conscience, provided such doctrinal matter did not deny first principles, that is, the Lord, eternal life, and the Word; and provided it was not contrary to the Divine order, that is, to the precepts of the Decalogue.

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