The main characters are six people from various walks of life loosely united by the simple fact that they have no particular thoughts about religion or a possible next life. It suggests a scenario of experience to come.
Swedenborg says that many people find much that is familiar: so, what might a life to come be like? If it's permanent and very 'real', how can it avoid becoming extremely repetitive and boring? What are likely to be the 'daily' experiences? What happens for people who love sport, shopping, hill walking - and countless other activities?. What about occupations, how do things get made, what about food, bodily functions, sex, 'materials', etc, etc?
In the past religious 'knowledge' tended to be in the hands of 'specialists'. Today many people frankly ignore it altogether. But if there is future experience, do you wonder what it might be like? Think about it from the point of view of the ordinary shopper in the supermarket, the guy on the golf course - in fact, any of us.
Nigel Flaxton would like to describe the novel as 'down to earth', but it isn't, of course! Nevertheless he wrote it to suggest implications for us here and now.
Nigel Flaxton has been associated with education throughout his life - almost forty years as a teacher and senior manager, followed by nearly half as much again providing part time support to schools in a variety of ways. In his younger years he was involved with a New Church society, hence his acquaintance with some of Swedenborg's ideas. Because this association began as early as he can remember, the notion of a life-to-come became 'fact' for him.
Adulthood, and wider education, gave him a more critical approach to religious matters, so he thoroughly enjoys reading about new discoveries in science and cosmology, but seeks out authors who write in simple language. Nevertheless, he can claim to have read all of 'A Brief History of Time' by Stephen Hawking.
Most recently he has enjoyed 'The Goldilocks Enigma', by Paul Davies.
Nigel Flaxton is a pseudonym.
Quotations from Swedenborg
Great numbers of the learned...are amazed when they see themselves, after their decease, in a body, in garments, and in houses, as in the world; and when they call to mind what they had thought about a life after death...are covered with shame...
The love of dominion of one over the other entirely takes away marriage love and its heavenly delight...