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4. A God of Love, Wisdom and Action

Summary points for Week 4: Chapters 12, 14, 15 and 16.1


Chapter 12: God is Life Itself

      Postulate 7 God is Life Itself.

      Postulate 8 We all live from God’s life, as if from ourselves.

      Postulate 9 Our actions (what we actually do) are our own.

      Postulate 10 The life we have from God is in accordance with what we have actually done

Chapter 14: God is Wisdom and Action

      Postulate 12 God is Wisdom Itself

      Postulate 13 God contains proceeding Actions.


Chapter 15: God is Transcendent and Immanent

      Postulate 14 God exists eternally.



Life and Life Itself

      The ‘life of an object’ is the most original generative disposition that gives rise to its capacities and actions.

      God is Life Itself: The original source of all powers, capacities and dispositions of objects and persons.


How do we live?

      Our being and life depends on God. How?

o   Our actions are our own

      The life we have is derived from God in accordance with what we have already done.

o   So we can choose when to act

o   As then we enjoy our actions

      Causes of events:

o   Our previous actions are the occasional causes

o   God’s life is the principal cause (the source)


We live ‘as if’ from ourselves

      Our life depends on God.

      But still, when we act, we feel as if we are the source of our own actions.

      Afterwards, we may reflect and recognize the true source.

      This is in order that we enjoy our life.

Wisdom from God

Our ability to see truth arises from ‘clear light of wisdom’ from God.

This is like how we see things in the clear light of the Sun:

       Sunlight reflects from objects                               ~ Divine wisdom illuminates ideas

       Reflected colored light enters our eyes          ~ Our understanding receives ‘colored’ thoughts             

       We see the object                                                           ~ We understand the truth of the idea

Understanding ideas is like receiving the forms of things.

So: thoughts are like the specific ‘forms’ or ‘shapes’ in which love exists.   As with God too.


God Reaches Out

      God's actions can continue into the world, like reaching out

      If these actions have life itself, then they are divine, and part of God.

      Not unchangeable (that is, not immutable), but still part of God


God is Love, Wisdom and Action

      God is love which is unselfish 
and cannot love only itself.

      God is wisdom as well as love

      God is thereby also power and action.

This is a kind of trinity within God as a person:

1.     Love is the substance

2.     Wisdom is the form

3.     Action is the resulting act

Love and Wisdom are the same forever (eternal). The actions may vary.


We receive and re-use life  (see also Section 16.1)

      We choose when to act (freedom!)

o   so we enjoy our actions

      This requires us to receive, retain, reuse life

      This requires in us ‘separate containers’ for love, and wisdom and means to action.

o   These are then combined when we choose.


      We have reception from love flowing in. This is ‘inflow’ or ‘influx’

      This is the source of all love, thought, power and action in the world.


Images of God  (applying Chapter 10 again to anticipate Section 17.1)

      All the world, and each of its parts, is a kind of image of God

o   We are images to greater or lesser extents,
depending on our nature and actions.

      Now also:

o   What is unified and continuous in God, 
is imaged as discrete distributions

o   There are in us distinct images from God
of Love, Wisdom and Action.


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