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Intensified Individuality

This teaching does not imply the idea that when people are reborn they all become the same of one monotonous type. Everyone knows that individual people are different, and as character develops, personality traits become stronger. Some Eastern philosophies teach that the purpose of human existence is mergence with the Divine. Obviously, this means losing any distinctive personality.

According to the teaching of the New Church, the closer a person lives to God, the more intense is his individuality. The Spirit of the Lord working in his soul brings out his distinctive characteristics, just as the warm sunshine makes a seed planted in the ground germinate, grow, and produce according to the specific type of plant it is.

As members of the family of God we are distinct individuals, each adding the value of his personality to the common good. A heavenly society is harmony in variety, and the unifying force is the love of good and the desire to be of service to others. In the process of spiritual rebirth individual characteristics are not blotted out or silenced. They are saved from being used badly, spiritually refined, and put to heavenly use.

To be merged with the Divine would be to become God, the creature being lost in the Creator. If that were the end result of our labor, we would have to give up the hope of our own immortality.

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