Space in Heaven



191. All things in heaven appear, just as in the world, to be in place and in space, and yet the angels have no notion or idea of place and space. As this must needs sounds like a paradox, I will endeavor to present the matter in a clear light, as it is of great importance.


192. All changes of place in the spiritual world are effected by changes of state of the interiors, which means that change of place is nothing else than change of state.141 In this way I have been taken by the Lord into the heavens and also to the earths in the universe; and it was my spirit that so journeyed, while my body remained in the same place.142 Such are all movements of the angels; and in consequence they have no distances, and having no distances they have no spaces, but in place of spaces they have states and their changes.


193. As changes of place are thus effected it is evident that approaches are likenesses of state of the interiors, and separations are unlikenesses; and for this reason those are near each other who are in like states, and those are at a distance who are in unlike states; and spaces in heaven are simply the external conditions corresponding to the internal states. For the same reason the heavens are distinct from each other, also the societies of each heaven and the individuals in each society; and this is also why the hells are entirely separated from the heavens, because they are in a contrary state.


194. For the same reason, again, anyone in the spiritual world who intensely desires the presence of another comes into his presence, for he thereby sees him in thought, and puts himself in his state; and conversely, one is separated from another so far as he is averse to him. And since all aversion comes from contrariety of affection and from disagreement of thought, whenever in that world several are together in one place they are visible [to one another] so long as they agree, but vanish as soon as they disagree.


195. Again, when anyone goes from one place to another, whether it be in his own city, or in courts or in gardens, or to others out of his own society, he arrives more quickly when he eagerly desires it, and less quickly when he does not, the way itself being lengthened and shortened in accordance with the desire, although it remains the same. This I have often seen to my surprise. All this again makes clear how distances, and consequently spaces, are wholly in accord with states of the interiors of the angels;143 and this being so, no notion or idea of space can enter their thought, although there are spaces with them equally as in the world.


196. This can be illustrated by the thoughts of man, in that space does not pertain to thought, for whatever is thought of intently is set before one as present. Again, whoever reflects about it knows that his sight recognizes space only by intermediate objects on the earth that are seen at the same time, or by recalling what he already knows about the distance. This happens because of the continuity; and in what is continuous there is no appearance of distance except from things not continuous. This is even more true of the angels, because their sight acts as one with their thought, and their thought acts as one with their affection, and things appear near or remote, and also varied, in accordance with the states of their interiors, as has been said above.


197. It follows from this that in the Word places and spaces, and all things that in any way relate to space, signify such things as relate to states, such as distances, near, far off, ways, journeys, sojourning, miles and furlongs, plains, fields, gardens, cities and streets, motions, measures of various kinds, long, broad, high, and deep, and innumerable other things; for most things in man’s thought from the world take on something from space and time.


[2] I will mention here only what is signified in the Word by length, breadth, and height. In this world, that is called long or broad which is long or broad in relation to space, and the same is true of height. But in heaven, where there is no thought from space, length means a state of good, breadth a state of truth, and height the distinction between them in accordance with degrees (see n. 38). Such is the meaning of these three dimensions, because length in heaven is from east to west, and those that dwell there are in good of love; while breadth in heaven is from south to north, and those that dwell there are in truth from good (see n. 148); while height in heaven applies to both of these in respect to degrees. This is why length, breadth, and height have these significations in the Word, as in Ezekiel (from chap. 40 to 48), where the new temple and the new earth, with the courts, chambers, gates, doors, windows, and surroundings are described by measures giving the length, breadth, and height, by which a new church, and the goods and truths that are in it are signified. Otherwise to what purpose would be all those measures?


[3] In like manner the New Jerusalem is described in Revelation in these words:


The city lieth foursquare, and the length thereof is as great as the breadth; and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs; the length, the breadth, and the height are equal (Rev. 21:16).


Because “the New Jerusalem” here signifies a new church these measures signify the things of the church, “length” its good of love, “breadth” truth from that good, “height” good and truth in respect to degrees, “twelve thousand furlongs” all good and truth in the complex. Otherwise, how could there be said to be a height of twelve thousand furlongs, the same as the length and the breadth? That “breadth” in the Word signifies truth is evident from David:


Jehovah, Thou hast not shut me up into the hand of the enemy, Thou hast made my feet to stand in a broad place (Ps. 31:8).


Out of straitness I called upon Jah; he answereth me in a broad place (Ps. 118:5).


Besides other passages (as in Isa. 8:8; and in Hab. 1:6). So in all other cases.


198. From all this it can be seen that although there are spaces in heaven as in the world, still nothing there is reckoned in accordance with spaces but in accordance with states; and in consequence spaces there cannot be measured as in the world, but can be seen only from the state and in accordance with the state of the interiors there.144


199. The primary and veriest cause of this is that the Lord is present with everyone in the measure of his love and faith,145 and that it is in accordance with the Lord’s presence that all things appear near or far away, for it is from this that all things in the heavens are determined. Also it is through this that angels have wisdom, for it is through this that they have extension of thought and through this a sharing of all things in the heavens; in a word, it is through this that they think spiritually, and not naturally like men.






The Form of Heaven That Determines Affiliations and Communications There



200. What the form of heaven is can be seen in some measure from what has been shown in the preceding chapters; as that heaven is like itself both in its greatest and in its least divisions (n. 72); that consequently each society is a heaven in a lesser form, and each angel in the least form (n. 51-58); that as the entire heaven reflects a single man, so each society of heaven reflects a man in a lesser form, and each angel in the least form (n. 59-77); that the wisest are at the center, and the less wise are round about even to the borders, and the like is true of each society (n. 43); and that those who are in the good of love dwell from the east to the west in heaven, and those who are in truths from good from the south to the north; and the same is true of each society (n. 148, 149). All this is in accord with the form of heaven; consequently it may be concluded from this what this form is in general.146


201. It is important to know what the form of heaven is, because not only is all affiliation there in accordance with it, but also all mutual communication, and in consequence of this all extension of thoughts and affections, and thus all the intelligence and wisdom of angels. From this it follows that each one there is wise just to the extent that he is in the form of heaven, and is thus a form of heaven. It makes no difference whether you say “in the form of heaven,” or “in the order of heaven,” since the form of anything is from its order and in accordance with its order.147


202. Let us consider first what is meant by being in the form of heaven. Man was created both in the image of heaven and in the image of the world; his internal in the image of heaven, and his external in the image of the world (see above, n. 57); and “in the image” means the same thing as in accordance with the form. But as man by the evils of his will and consequent falsities of thought has destroyed in himself the image of heaven, that is, the form of heaven, and in place of it has brought in the image and form of hell, his internal is closed up from his very birth; and this is why man is born into pure ignorance, while animals of every kind are not. And that man may have the image of heaven or form of heaven restored to him he must be taught the things that pertain to order; since form, as has been said, is in accord with order. The Word contains all the laws of Divine order, for its precepts are the laws of Divine order; therefore to the extent that man knows these and lives in accordance with them his internal is opened and the order or image of heaven is there formed anew. This makes clear what is meant by being in the form of heaven, namely, that it is to live in accordance with those things that are in the Word.148


203. So far as anyone is in the form of heaven he is in heaven, and is, in fact, a heaven in the least form (n. 57); consequently he is to the same extent in intelligence and wisdom; for as has been said above, all the thought of his understanding and all the affection of his will extend themselves on every side into heaven in accord with its form, and wonderfully communicate with the societies there, and these in turn with him.149


[2] There are some who do not believe that thoughts and affections really extend themselves around about them, but believe that they are within them, because whatever they think they see within in themselves, and not as distant; but such are greatly mistaken. For as the sight of the eye has extension to remote objects, and is affected in accordance with the order of the things seen in that extension, so the interior sight, which is that of the understanding, has a like extension in the spiritual world, although not perceived by man, for the reason given above (n. 196). The only difference is that the sight of the eye is affected in a natural way, because it is affected by the things in the natural world, while the sight of the understanding is affected in a spiritual way, because by the things in the spiritual world, all of which have relation to good and truth; and man’s ignorance of this is because of his not knowing that there is any light that enlightens the understanding; and yet without the light that enlightens the understanding man could not think at all (of which light see above, n. 126-132).


[3] There was a certain spirit who believed that his thought was from himself, thus without any extension outside of himself and communication thereby with societies outside of him. That he might learn that this was not true his communication with neighboring societies was cut off, and in consequence, not only was he deprived of thought but he fell down as if lifeless, although tossing his arms about like a newborn infant. After a while the communication was restored to him, and then as it was gradually restored he returned into the state of his thought.


[4] When other spirits had seen this they confessed that all thought and affection, and in consequence everything of life, flow in in accordance with communication, since everything of man’s life consists in his ability to think and be moved by affection, or what is the same, in his ability to understand and will.150


204. But let it be understood that intelligence and wisdom vary with everyone in accordance with this communication, those whose intelligence and wisdom are formed out of genuine truths and goods having communication with societies in accordance with the form of heaven; while those whose intelligence and wisdom are not formed out of genuine truths and goods, and yet out of what is in accord therewith, have a broken and variously coherent communication, since it is not with societies that are in a series in which there is a form of heaven. On the other hand, those that are not in intelligence and wisdom, because they are in falsities from evil, have communication with societies in hell; and their extension is determined by the degree of their confirmation. Let it also be known that this communication with societies is not such a communication with them as is clearly perceptible to those there, but is a communication with what they really are, which is in them and flows from them.151


205. There is an affiliation of all in heaven in accordance with spiritual relationships, that is, relationships of good and truth in their order. It is so in the whole heaven; so in each society, and so in each house. Because of this angels who are in like good and truth recognize each other, as relatives by blood and marriage do on the earth, precisely as if they had been acquainted from infancy. The good and truth in each angel, which constitute his wisdom and intelligence, are affiliated in like manner; they recognize each other in like manner, and as they recognize each other they join themselves together;152 and in consequence those in whom truths and goods are thus joined in accordance with a form of heaven see things following one another in series, and how they cohere widely round about; but those in whom goods and truths are not conjoined in accordance with the form of heaven do not see this.


206. In each heaven there is such a form, and in accordance with it the angels have communication and extension of thoughts and affections, and thus in accordance with it they have intelligence and wisdom. But the communication of one heaven with another is different, that is, of the third or inmost with the second or middle, and of this with the first or outmost. But the communication between the heavens should not be called communication but influx. About this something shall now be said. That there are three heavens distinct from each other can be seen above in its own chapter (n. 29-40).


207. That between one heaven and another there is influx but not communication can be seen from their relative position. The third or inmost heaven is above, the second or middle heaven is below, and the first or outmost heaven is still lower. There is a like arrangement in all the societies in each heaven, for example, some dwell on elevated places that appear like mountains (n. 188); on the top of which those of the inmost heaven dwell; below these are the societies of the second heaven, below these again the societies of the outmost heaven. The same is true everywhere, both in elevated places and in those not elevated. A society of a higher heaven has no communication with a society of a lower except by correspondences (see above, n. 100); and communication by correspondences is what is called influx.


208. One heaven is joined with another, or a society of one heaven with the society of another, by the Lord alone, both by direct and by mediate influx, directly from himself, and mediately through the higher heavens in order into the lower.153


As the conjunction of the heavens by this inflowing is from the Lord alone there is a most careful precaution against any angel of a higher heaven looking down into a society of a lower heaven and talking with anyone there; for the angel is thus immediately deprived of his intelligence and wisdom. The reason of this also shall be told. As there are three degrees of heaven, so each angel has three degrees of life, those in the inmost heaven having the third or inmost degree open, while the second and first degrees are closed; those in the middle heaven having the second degree opened and the first and third closed; and those in the lowest heaven having the first degree opened and the second and third closed. Consequently, as soon as an angel of the third heaven looks down into a society of the second heaven and talks with anyone there his third degree is at once closed; and as his wisdom resides in that degree, if that is closed he is deprived of his wisdom, for he has none in the second or first degree. This is what is meant by the words of the Lord in Matthew:


He that is on the housetop, let him not go down to take what is in his house; and he that is in the field, let him not turn back to take his garment (Matt. 24:17, 18).


And in Luke:


In that day he that shall be on the housetop and his goods in the house, let him not go down to take them away; and he that is in the field let him not turn back. Remember Lot’s wife (Luke 17:31, 32).


209. No influx is possible from the lower heavens into the higher, because this is contrary to order; but there is influx from the higher heavens into the lower. Moreover, the wisdom of the angels of a higher heaven surpasses the wisdom of the angels of a lower heaven as a myriad to one; and this is another reason why the angels of a lower heaven cannot converse with those of a higher heaven; and in fact when they look toward them they do not see them, the higher heaven appearing like a cloudy something over their heads. But the angels of a higher heaven can see those in a lower heaven, although if permitted to talk with them they would lose their wisdom, as has been said above.


210. The thoughts and affections as well as the speech of the angels of the inmost heaven are never perceived in the middle heaven, because they so transcend what is there. But when it pleases the Lord there is seen in the lower heavens from that source something like a flame, and from the thoughts and affections in the middle heaven there is seen in the outmost heaven something luminous, and sometimes a cloud glowing white and variegated. From that cloud, its ascent, descent, and form, what is being said there is in some measure known.


211. From all this it can be seen what the form of heaven is, namely, that it is the most perfect of all in the inmost heaven; in the middle heaven it is also perfect, but in a lower degree, and in the outmost heaven in a degree still lower; also that the form of one heaven has its permanent existence from another by means of influx from the Lord. But what communication by influx is cannot be understood unless it is known what degrees of height are, and how they differ from degrees of length and breadth. What these different degrees are may be seen above (n. 38).


212. When it comes to the particulars of the form of heaven and how it proceeds and flows, this not even the angels can comprehend. Some conception of it can be gained from the form of all things in the human body, when this is scanned and investigated by an acute and wise man; for it has been shown above, in their respective chapters, that the entire heaven reflects a single man (see n. 59-72); and that all things in man correspond to the heavens (n. 87-102). How incomprehensible and inexplicable that form is, is evident only in a general way from the nervous fibers, by which each part and all parts of the body are woven together.


What these fibers are, and how they proceed and flow in the brain, the eye cannot at all perceive; for innumerable fibers are there so interwoven that taken together they appear like a soft continuous mass; and yet it is in accord with these that each thing and all things of the will and understanding flow with the utmost distinctness into acts. How again they interweave themselves in the body is clear from the various plexuses, such as those of the heart, the mesentery, and others; and also from the knots called ganglions, into which many fibers enter from every region and there intermingle, and when variously joined together go forth to their functions, and this again and again; besides like things in every viscus, member, organ, and muscle.


Whoever examines these fibers and their many wonders with the eye of wisdom will be utterly bewildered. And yet the things seen with the eye are few, and those not seen are still more wonderful because they belong to an inner realm of nature. It is clearly evident that this form corresponds to the form of heaven, because all the workings of the understanding and the will are within it and are in accordance with it; for it is in accordance with this form that whatever a man wills passes spontaneously into act, and whatever he thinks spreads through the fibers from their beginnings even to their terminations, which is the source of sensations; and inasmuch as it is the form of thought and will, it is the form of intelligence and wisdom. Such is the form that corresponds to the form of heaven. And from this it can be known that such is the form in accordance with which every affection and thought of angels extends itself, and that so far as the angels are in that form they are in intelligence and wisdom. That this form of heaven is from the Divine human of the Lord can be seen above (n. 78-86). All this has been said to make clear also that the heavenly form is such that even as to its generals it can never be completely known, thus that it is incomprehensible even to the angels, as has been said above.






Governments in Heaven



213. As heaven is divided into societies, and the larger societies consist of some hundreds of thousands of angels (n. 50), and all within a society, although in like good, are not in like wisdom (n. 43), it must needs follow that governments exist there, since order must be observed, and all things of order must be guarded. But the governments in the heavens differ; they are of one sort in societies that constitute the Lord’s celestial kingdom, and of another sort in the societies that constitute his spiritual kingdom; they differ also in accordance with the functions of the several societies. Nevertheless, no other government than the government of mutual love is possible in the heavens, and the government of mutual love is heavenly government.


214. Government in the Lord’s celestial kingdom is called righteousness because all in that kingdom are in the good of love to the Lord from the Lord, and whatever is from that good is called righteous. Government there belongs to the Lord alone. He leads them and teaches them in the affairs of life. The truths that are called truths of judgment are written on their hearts; everyone knows them, perceives them, and sees them;154 and in consequence matters of judgment there never come into question, but only matters of righteousness, which belong to the life. About these matters the less wise consult the more wise, and these consult the Lord and receive answers. Their heaven, that is, their inmost joy, is to live rightly from the Lord.


215. In the Lord’s spiritual kingdom the government is called judgment; because those in that kingdom are in spiritual good, which is the good of charity toward the neighbor, and that good in its essence is truth;155 and truth pertains to judgment, as good pertains to righteousness.156 These, too, are led by the Lord, but mediately (n. 208); and in consequence they have governors, few or many according to the need of the society in which they are. They also have laws according to which they live together. The governors administer all things in accordance with the laws, which they understand because they are wise, and in doubtful matters they are enlightened by the Lord.


216. As government from good, which is the kind of government that exists in the Lord’s celestial kingdom, is called righteousness, and government from truth, which is the kind of government that exists in the Lord’s spiritual kingdom, is called judgment, so the terms “righteousness and judgment” are used in the Word when heaven and the church are treated of, “righteousness” signifying celestial good, and “judgment” spiritual good, which good, as has been said above, is in its essence truth, as in the following passages:


Of peace there shall be no end upon the throne of David and upon his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it in judgment and in righteousness from henceforth and even to eternity (Isa. 9:7).


By “David” here the Lord is meant;157 and by “his kingdom” heaven, as is evident from the following passage:


I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as King, and shall deal intelligently and shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land (Jer. 23:5).


Jehovah is exalted, for he dwelleth on high; he hath filled Zion with judgment and righteousness (Isa. 33:5).


“Zion” also means heaven and the church.158


I, Jehovah, doing judgment and righteousness on the earth, for in these things I delight (Jer. 9:24).


I will betroth thee unto Me forever, and I will betroth thee unto Me in righteousness and judgment (Hos. 2:19).


O Jehovah, in the heavens Thy righteousness is like the mountains of God, and Thy judgments are like the great deep (Ps. 36:5, 6).


They ask of Me the judgments of righteousness, they long for an approach unto God (Isa. 58:2).


So in other places.


217. In the Lord’s spiritual kingdom there are various forms of government, differing in different societies, the variety being in accord with the functions performed by the societies; and the functions of these are in accord with the functions of all things in man to which they correspond. That these are various is well known, the heart having one function, the lungs another, the liver another, the pancreas and spleen another, and each sensory organ another. As in the body these organs perform various services, so there are various services pertaining to the societies in the greatest man, which is heaven, for the societies there correspond to these organs. That there is a correspondence of all things of heaven with all things of man may be seen in its own chapter above (n. 87-102). But all these forms of government agree in this, that they look to the public good as their end, and in that good to the good of the individual.159 And this is so because everyone in the whole heaven is under the auspices of the Lord, who loves all, and from Divine love ordains that there shall be a common good, from which each individual shall receive his own good. Each one, moreover, receives good according as he loves the common good; for so far as he loves the common good he loves all and everyone; and as that love is love of the Lord he is to that extent loved by the Lord, and good comes to him.


218. From all this it can be seen what the governors there are, namely, that they are such as are preeminent in love and wisdom, and therefore desire the good of all, and from wisdom know how to provide for the realization of that good. Such governors do not domineer or dictate, but they minister and serve (to serve meaning to do good to others from a love of the good, and to minister meaning to see to it that the good is done); nor do they make themselves greater than others, but less, for they put the good of society and of the neighbor in the first place, and put their own good last; and whatever is in the first place is greater and what is last is less. Nevertheless, the rulers have honor and glory; they dwell in the midst of the society, in higher position than the rest, and also in magnificent palaces; and this glory and honor they accept not for the sake of themselves but for the sake of obedience; for all there know that they have this honor and glory from the Lord, and on that account should be obeyed. This is what is meant by the Lord’s words to his disciples:


Whosoever would become great among you let him be your minister; and whosoever would be first among you let him be your servant; as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto but to minister (Matt. 20:27, 28).

He that is greatest among you let him be as the least, and he that is chief as he that doth minister (Luke 22:26).


219. Also in each house there is a like government in a lesser form. In every house there is a master and there are servants; the master loves the servants and the servants love the master, consequently they serve each other from love. The master teaches how they ought to live, and tells what is to be done; the servants obey and perform their duties. To perform use is the delight of everyone’s life. This shows that the Lord’s kingdom is a kingdom of uses.


220. Also in the hells there are governments, for without governments they could not be kept in restraint; but the governments there are opposite to the governments in the heavens; they are governments of the love of self. Everyone there wishes to dictate to others and to be over others. They hate those that do not favor them, and make them objects of their vengeance and fury, for such is the nature of the love of self. Therefore the more malignant are set over them as governors, and these they obey from fear.160 But of this below, where the hells are treated of.






Divine Worship in Heaven



221. Divine worship in the heavens is not unlike in externals Divine worship on the earth, but in internals it is different. In the heavens, as on the earth, there are doctrines, preachings, and church edifices. In essentials the doctrines there are everywhere the same; but in the higher heavens they contain more interior wisdom than in the lower. The preachings are in harmony with the doctrines; and as they have houses and palaces (n. 183-190), so they have also church edifices, in which there is preaching. Such things exist in heaven, because the angels are being perfected continually in wisdom and love. For they possess, as men do, understanding and will; and both their understanding and their will are capable of being continually perfected, the understanding by means of truths of intelligence, and the will by means of the goods of love.161


222. But essential Divine worship in the heavens does not consist in going to church and hearing preaching, but in a life of love, charity, and faith, in accordance with doctrine; preachings in churches serve solely as means of instruction in matters of life. I have talked with angels on this subject, and have told them that it is believed in the world that Divine worship consists solely in attending church, listening to the preaching, observing the sacrament of the Supper three or four times a year, and performing other acts of worship according to the requirements of the church; also devoting special times to prayers, and at such times, behaving devoutly. The angels said that these are outward acts that ought to be done, but are of no avail unless there is an internal from which they proceed, which is a life in accordance with the precepts that doctrine teaches.


223. That I might learn about their meeting in places of worship, I have been permitted at times to attend and to hear the preaching. The preacher stands in a pulpit at the east. Those who are in the light of wisdom more than others sit in front of him; those who are in less light sit to the right and left of these. There is a circular arrangement of the seats, so that all are in the preacher’s view, no one so sitting at either side as to be out of his view. At the entrance, which is at the east of the building and on the left of the pulpit, those stand who are being initiated. No one is permitted to stand behind the pulpit; when there is anyone there the preacher becomes confused. It is the same if anyone in the congregation dissents; and for this reason the dissenter must needs turn away his face. The wisdom of the preachings is such as to be above all comparison with the preachings of this world, for those in the heavens are in interior light. The church edifices in the spiritual kingdom are apparently built of stone, and those in the celestial kingdom of wood; because stone corresponds to truth, and those who are in the spiritual kingdom are in truth, while wood corresponds to good, and those in the celestial kingdom are in good.162 In that kingdom the sacred edifices are not called churches but houses of God. In that kingdom they are without magnificence; but in the spiritual kingdom they are more or less magnificent.


224. I have also talked with one of the preachers about the holy state in which those are who listen to the preaching in the churches. He said that everyone is pious, devout, and holy in harmony with his interiors, which pertain to love and faith, for holiness itself is in love and faith, because the Divine of the Lord is in them. He also said that he did not know what outward holiness is apart from love and faith; and when he thought about it he said that perhaps it is something counterfeiting holiness in outward appearance, either conventional or hypocritical; and that such holiness is kindled and sustained by spurious fire from the love of self and the world.


225. All the preachers are from the Lord’s spiritual kingdom; none are from the celestial kingdom. They are from the spiritual kingdom because the angels there are in truths from good, and all preaching must be from truths. There are no preachers from the celestial kingdom because those who are there are in the good of love, and they see and perceive truths from good, but do not talk about them. But although the angels in the celestial kingdom perceive and see truths there are preachings there, since by means of preachings they are enlightened in the truths that they already know, and are perfected by many truths that they did not know before. As soon as they hear truths they acknowledge them and thus perceive them; and the truths they perceive they love, and by living in accordance with them they make them to be of their life, declaring that living in accordance with truths is loving the Lord.163


226. All preachers are appointed by the Lord, and have therefrom a gift for preaching. No others are permitted to preach in the churches. They are not called priests, but preachers. They are not called priests because the celestial kingdom is the priesthood of heaven; for priesthood signifies the good of love to the Lord, and those in the celestial kingdom are in that good; while the spiritual kingdom is the kingship of heaven, for kingship signifies truth from good, and those in the spiritual kingdom are in that truth (see above, n. 24).164


227. The doctrines with which their preachings are in accord all look to life as their end, and none look to faith separate from the life. The doctrine of the inmost heaven is more full of wisdom than the doctrine of the middle heaven, and this more full of intelligence than the doctrine of the outmost heaven; for in each heaven the doctrines are adapted to the perceptions of the angels. The essential of all doctrines is acknowledging the Divine human of the Lord.






The Power of the Angels of Heaven



228. That the angels possess power cannot be comprehended by those who know nothing about the spiritual world and its influx into the natural world. Such think that angels can have no power because they are spiritual and are even so pure and unsubstantial that no eye can see them. But those who look more interiorly into the causes of things take a different view. Such know that all the power that a man has is from his understanding and will (for apart from these he is powerless to move a particle of his body), and his understanding and will are his spiritual man. This moves the body and its members at its pleasure; for whatever it thinks the mouth and tongue speak, and whatever it wills the body does; and it bestows its strength at pleasure. As man’s will and understanding are ruled by the Lord through angels and spirits, so also are all things of his body, because these are from the will and understanding; and if you will believe it, without influx from heaven man cannot even move a step. That this is so has been shown me by much experience. Angels have been permitted to move my steps, my actions, and my tongue and speech, as they pleased, and this by influx into my will and thought; and I have learned thereby that of myself I could do nothing. I was afterwards told by them that every man is so ruled, and that he can know this from the doctrine of the church and from the Word, for he prays that God may send his angels to lead him, direct his steps, teach him, and inspire in him what to think and what to say, and other like things; although he says and believes otherwise when he is thinking by himself apart from doctrine.


All this has been said to make known what power angels have with man.


229. But so great is the power of angels in the spiritual world that if I should make known all that I have witnessed in regard to it, it would exceed belief. Any obstruction there that ought to be removed because it is contrary to Divine order the angels cast down or overthrow merely by an effort of the will and a look. Thus I have seen mountains that were occupied by the evil cast down and overthrown, and sometimes shaken from end to end as in earthquakes; also rocks cleft asunder to their bottoms, and the evil who were upon them swallowed up. I have seen also hundreds of thousands of evil spirits dispersed by angels and cast down into hell. Numbers are of no avail against them; neither are devices, cunning, or combinations; for they see through them all, and disperse them in a moment. (But more may be seen on this subject in the account of the destruction of Babylon.) Such power do angels have in the spiritual world. It is evident from the Word that they have like power in the natural world also when it is permitted; for instance, that they have given to destruction entire armies; and that they brought on a pestilence from which seventy thousand men died. Of this angel it is said:


The angel stretched out his hand against Jerusalem to destroy it but Jehovah repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed the people, It is enough, now stay thy hand. And David saw the angel that smote the people (2 Sam. 24:16, 17).


Besides other passages. Because the angels have such power they are called powers; as in David:


Bless Jehovah, ye angels, mighty in power (Ps. 103:20).


230. But it must be understood that the angels have no power whatever from themselves, but that all their power is from the Lord; and that they are powers only so far as they acknowledge this. Whoever of them believes that he has power from himself instantly becomes so weak as not to be able to resist even a single evil spirit. For this reason angels ascribe no merit whatever to themselves, and are averse to all praise and glory on account of anything they do, ascribing all the praise and glory to the Lord.


231. It is the Divine truth that goes forth from the Lord that has all power in the heavens, for the Lord in heaven is Divine truth united to Divine good (see n. 126-140). To the extent that angels are receptions of this truth they are powers.165 Moreover each one is his own truth and his own good because each one is such as his understanding and will are. The understanding pertains to truth because everything of it is from truths, and the will pertains to good because everything of it is from goods; for whatever anyone understands he calls truth, and whatever he wills he calls good. From this it is that everyone is his own truth and his own good.166 Therefore so far as an angel is truth from the Divine and good from the Divine he is a power, because to that extent the Lord is in him. And as no one’s good and truth are wholly like or the same as another’s, since in heaven, as in the world, there is endless variety (n. 20), so the power of one angel is not like the power of another. Those who constitute the arms in the greatest man, or heaven, have the greatest power because such are more in truths than others, and into their truths good flows from the entire heaven. Moreover, the power of the whole man passes into the arms, and by means of these the whole body exercises its powers. It is for this reason that in the Word “arms” and “hand” signify powers.167 Sometimes on this account a naked arm is seen in heaven so powerful as to be able to break in pieces everything in its way, even though it were a great rock on the earth. Once it was moved toward me, and I perceived that it was able to crush my bones to atoms.


232. It has been shown above (n. 137) that the Divine truth that goes forth from the Lord has all power, and that angels have power to the extent that they are receptions of Divine truth from the Lord. But angels are so far receptions of Divine truth as they are receptions of Divine good, for truths have all their power from good, and none apart from good. So, too, good has all its power through truths, and none apart from truths. Power springs from the conjunction of these two. The same is true of faith and love; for it is the same whether you say truth or faith, since everything of faith is truth; also it is the same whether you say good or love, since everything of love is good.168 The great power that angels have by means of truths from good is shown also from this, that when an evil spirit is merely looked at by the angels he falls into a swoon, and does not appear like a man, and this until the angel turns away his eyes. Such an effect is produced by the look of the eyes of angels, because the sight of angels is from the light of heaven, and the light of heaven is Divine truth (see above, n. 126-132). Moreover, the eyes correspond to truths from good.169


233. As truths from good have all power, so falsities from evil have no power at all;170 and as all in hell are in falsities from evil they have no power against truth and good. But what power they have among themselves, and what power evil spirits have before they are cast into hell, will be told hereafter.






The Speech of Angels



234. Angels talk with each other just as men do in the world, and on various subjects, as on domestic matters, and on matters of the civil state, and of moral and spiritual life. And there is no difference except that their talk is more intelligent than that of men, because it is from more interior thought. I have been permitted to associate with them frequently, and to talk with them as friend with friend, and sometimes as stranger with stranger; and as I was then in a state like theirs I knew no otherwise than that I was talking with men on the earth.


235. Angelic speech, like human speech, is distinguished into words; it is also audibly uttered and heard; for angels, like men, have mouth, tongue, and ears, and an atmosphere in which the sound of their speech is articulated, although it is a spiritual atmosphere adapted to angels, who are spiritual. In their atmosphere angels breathe and utter words by means of their breath, as men do in their atmosphere.171


236. In the entire heaven all have the same language, and they all understand one another, to whatever society, near or remote, they belong. Language there is not learned but is instinctive with everyone, for it flows from their very affection and thought, the tones of their speech corresponding to their affections, and the vocal articulations which are words corresponding to the ideas of thought that spring from the affections; and because of this correspondence the speech itself is spiritual, for it is affection sounding and thought speaking.


[2] Anyone who gives any thought to it can see that all thought is from affection which pertains to love, and that the ideas of thought are the various forms into which the general affection is distributed; for no thought or idea is possible apart from affection—the soul and life of thought is from affection. This enables angels to know, merely from another’s speech, what he is—from the tone what his affection is, and from the vocal articulations or words what his mind is. The wiser angels know what the ruling affection is from a single series of words, for that affection is what they chiefly attend to.


[3] It is known that each individual has a variety of affections, one affection when in joy, another when in grief, another when in sympathy and compassion, another when in sincerity and truth, another when in love and charity, another when in zeal or in anger, another when in simulation and deceit, another when in quest of honor and glory, and so on. But the ruling affection or love is in all of these; and for this reason the wiser angels, because they perceive that love, know from the speech the whole state of another.


[4] This it has been granted me to know from much experience. I have heard angels disclosing the character of another’s life merely from hearing him speak. They also said that from any ideas of another’s thought they could know all things of his life, because from those ideas they know his ruling love, in which are all things in their order. They know also that man’s book of life is nothing else.


237. Angelic language has nothing in common with human languages except certain words that are the sounds of a specific affection; yet this is true not of the words themselves but of their sounds; on which subject something will be said in what follows. That angelic language has nothing in common with human languages is evident from the fact that angels are unable to utter a single word of human language. This was tried but they could not do it, because they can utter nothing except what is in entire agreement with their affections; whatever is not in agreement is repugnant to their very life, for life belongs to affection, and their speech is from their life. I have been told that the first language of men on our earth coincided with angelic language because they had it from heaven; and that the Hebrew language coincides with it in some respects.


238. As the speech of angels corresponds to their affection, and their affection belongs to their love, and as the love of heaven is love to the Lord and love toward the neighbor (see above, n. 13-19), it is evident how choice and delightful their talk must be, affecting not the ears only but also the interiors of the mind of those who listen to it. There was a certain hardhearted spirit with whom an angel spoke. At length he was so affected by what was said that he shed tears, saying that he had never wept before, but he could not refrain, for it was love speaking.


239. The speech of angels is likewise full of wisdom because it proceeds from their interior thoughts, and their interior thought is wisdom, as their interior affection is love, and in their speech their love and wisdom unite. For this reason their speech is so full of wisdom that they can express in a single word what man cannot express in a thousand words; also the ideas of their thought include things that are beyond man’s comprehension, and still more his power of expression. This is why the things that have been heard and seen in heaven are said to be ineffable, and such as ear hath never heard nor eye seen.


[2] That this is true I have also been permitted to learn by experience. At times I have entered into the state in which angels are, and in that state have talked with them, and I then understood everything. But when I was brought back into my former state, and thus into the natural thought proper to man, and wished to recall what I had heard I could not; for there were thousands of things unadapted to the ideas of natural thought, and therefore inexpressible except by variegations of heavenly light, and thus not at all by human words.


[3] Also the ideas of thought of the angels from which their words spring are modifications of the light of heaven, and the affections from which the tones of the words spring are variations of the heat of heaven, the light of heaven being Divine truth or wisdom, and the heat of heaven the Divine good or love (see above, n. 126-140); and the angels have their affection from the Divine love, and their thought from the Divine wisdom.172


240. Because the speech of angels proceeds directly from their affection, and the ideas of their thought are the various forms into which their general affection is distributed (see above, n. 236), angels can express in a moment what a man cannot express in half an hour; also they can set forth in a few words what has been expressed in writing on many pages; and this, too, has been proved to me by much experience.173 Thus the angels’ ideas of thought and the words of their speech make one, like effecting cause and effect; for what is in the ideas of thought as cause is presented in the words as effect, and this is why every word comprehends in itself so many things. Also all the particulars of angelic thought, and thus of angelic speech, appear when pre sented to view like a thin wave or circumfluent atmosphere, in which are innumerable things in their order derived from angelic wisdom, and these enter another’s thought and affect him. The ideas of thought of everyone, both angel and man, are presented to view in the light of heaven, whenever the Lord pleases.174


241. The speech of angels of the Lord’s celestial kingdom resembles the speech of the angels of his spiritual kingdom, but it is from more interior thought. Celestial angels are in good of love to the Lord, and therefore speak from wisdom; while spiritual angels are in the good of charity toward the neighbor, which in its essence is truth (n. 215), and therefore speak from intelligence, for wisdom is from good, and intelligence is from truth. For this reason the speech of celestial angels is like a gentle stream, soft, and as it were continuous; but the speech of spiritual angels is slightly vibratory and divided. The speech of celestial angels has much of the tones of the vowels u and o; while the speech of spiritual angels has much of the tones of e and i;175 for the vowels stand for tone, and in the tone there is affection, the tone of the speech of angels corresponding to their affection, as has been said above (n. 236); while the vocal articulations, which are words, correspond to the ideas of thought which spring from affection. As the vowels are not essential to a language, but serve by means of tones to elevate the words to the various affections according to each one’s state, so in the Hebrew tongue the vowels are not expressed, and are also variously pronounced. From this a man’s quality in respect to his affection and love is known to the angels. Also in the speech of celestial angels there are no hard consonants, and it rarely passes from one consonant to another without the interposition of a word beginning with a vowel. This is why in the Word the particle “and” is so often interposed, as can be seen by those who read the Word in the Hebrew, in which this particle is soft, beginning and ending with a vowel sound. Again, in the Word, in Hebrew, it can in some measure be seen from the words used whether they belong to the celestial class or the spiritual class, that is, whether they involve good or truth. Those involving good partake largely of the sounds of u and o, and also somewhat of a, while those involving truth partake of the sounds of e and i. Because it is especially in tones that affections express themselves, so in human speech, when great subjects are discussed, such as heaven [caelum] and God [Deus], those words are preferred that contain the vowels u and o; and musical tones, whenever such themes are to be expressed, rise to the same fullness; but not when less exalted themes are rendered. By such means musical art is able to express affections of various kinds.


242. In angelic speech there is a kind of symphony that cannot be described;176 which comes from the pouring forth and diffusion of the thoughts and affections from which speech flows, in accordance with the form of heaven, and all affiliation and all communication in heaven is in accordance with that form. That angels are affiliated in accordance with the form of heaven, and that their thoughts and affections flow in accordance with it may be seen above (n. 200-212).


243. Speech like that in the spiritual world is inherent in every man in his interior intellectual part; but man does not know this, because this speech does not with man, as with angels, fall into words analogous to affection; nevertheless this is what causes man, when he enters the other life, to come into the same speech as spirits and angels, and thus to know how to speak without instruction.177 But more on this subject hereafter.


244. In heaven, as has been said above, all have one speech; but it is varied in this respect, that the speech of the wise is more interior and more full of variations of affections and ideas of thought, while the speech of the less wise is more external and less full; and the speech of the simple is still more external, consisting of words from which the meaning is to be gathered in the same way as when men are talking to one another. There is also speech by the face, terminating in something sonorous modified by ideas. Again, there is speech in which heavenly representatives are mingled with the ideas, and go forth from ideas to sight. There is also speech by gestures that correspond to affections, and represent things like those expressed by their words. There is speech by means of the generals of affections and the generals of thoughts. There is speech like thunder; besides other kinds.


245. The speech of evil and infernal spirits is likewise natural to them because it is from affections; but it is from evil affections and consequent filthy ideas, to which angels are utterly averse. Thus the modes of speaking in hell are opposite to those of heaven; and in consequence evil spirits cannot endure angelic speech, and angels cannot endure infernal speech. To the angels infernal speech is like a bad odor striking the nostrils. The speech of hypocrites, who are such as are able to feign themselves angels of light, resembles in respect to words the speech of angels, but in respect to affections and consequent ideas of thought it is the direct opposite. Consequently, when the inner nature of their speech is perceived as wise angels perceive it, it is heard as the gnashing of teeth, and strikes with horror.






The Speech of Angels with Man



246. Angels who talk with man do not talk in their own language, nor in any language unknown to man, but in the man’s own language, or in some other language with which he is acquainted. This is so because when angels speak with man they turn themselves to him and conjoin themselves with him; and this conjunction of angel with man causes the two to be in like thought; and as man’s thought coheres to his memory, and this is the source of his speech, the two have the same language. Moreover, when an angel or a spirit comes to a man, and by turning to him is conjoined to him, he so enters into the entire memory of the man that he is scarcely conscious that he does not himself know whatever the man knows, including his languages.


[2] I have talked with angels about this, and have said that perhaps they thought that they were addressing me in my mother tongue, since it is so perceived; and yet it was I and not they that spoke; and that this is evident from the fact that angels cannot utter a single word of human language (see n. 237); furthermore, human language is natural and they are spiritual, and spiritual beings cannot give expression to anything in a natural way. To this they replied that they are aware that their conjunction with the man with whom they are speaking is with his spiritual thought; but because his spiritual thought flows into his natural thought, and his natural thought coheres to his memory, the language of the man and all his knowledge appear to them to be their own; and that this is so for this reason, that while it is the Lord’s pleasure that there should be such a conjunction with and sort of insertion of man into heaven, yet the state of man is now such that there can no longer be such conjunction with angels, but only with spirits who are not in heaven.


[3] When I talked about this with spirits also they were unwilling to believe that it is the man that speaks, insisting that they spoke in man, also that man’s knowledge is their knowledge and not the man’s knowledge, consequently that everything that man knows is from them. I tried to convince them by many proofs that this is not true, but in vain. Who are meant by spirits and who are meant by angels will be told further on when the world of spirits is treated of.


247. There is another reason why angels and spirits conjoin themselves so closely with man as not to know but that what is man’s is their own, namely, that there is such conjunction between the spiritual world and the natural world in man that the two are seemingly one. But inasmuch as man has separated himself from heaven the Lord has provided that there should be angels and spirits with each individual, and that man should be ruled by the Lord through these. This is the reason for such close conjunction. It would have been otherwise if man had not separated himself; for in that case he might have been ruled by the Lord through the general influx from heaven, without spirits and angels being adjoined to him. But this subject will be specially considered in what follows, when the conjunction of heaven with man is treated of.


248. The speech of an angel or spirit with man is heard by him as audibly as the speech of man with man, yet by himself only, and not by others who stand near; and for the reason that the speech of an angel or spirit flows first into a man’s thought, and by an inner way into his organ of hearing, and thus moves it from within; while the speech of man with man flows first into the air and by an outward way into his organ of hearing, and moves it from without. Evidently, then, the speech of an angel or spirit with man is heard within him; but as the organs of hearing are thus equally moved, the speech is equally audible. That the speech of an angel or a spirit flows down from within even into the ear has been made clear to me by the fact that it flows also into the tongue, causing a slight vibration, but without any such motion as when the man himself by means of the tongue forms the sound of speech into words.


249. But at the present day to talk with spirits is rarely granted because it is dangerous;178 for then the spirits know, what otherwise they do not know, that they are with man; and evil spirits are such that they hold man in deadly hatred, and desire nothing so much as to destroy him both soul and body, and this they do in the case of those who have so indulged themselves in fantasies as to have separated from themselves the enjoyments proper to the natural man. Some also who lead a solitary life sometimes hear spirits talking with them, and without danger; but that the spirits with them may not know that they are with man they are at intervals removed by the Lord; for most spirits are not aware that there is any other world than that in which they live, and therefore are unaware that there are men anywhere else; and this is why man is not permitted to speak with them in return. If he did they would know. Again, those who meditate much on religious subjects, and are so intent upon them as to see them as it were inwardly within themselves, begin to hear spirits speaking with them; for religious persuasions, whatever they are, when man dwells upon them by himself and does not adapt them to the various things of use in the world, penetrate to the interiors and rest there, and occupy the whole spirit of the man, and even enter into the spiritual world and act upon the spirits there. But such persons are visionaries and enthusiasts; and whatever spirit they hear they believe to be the Holy Spirit, when, in fact, such spirits are enthusiastic spirits. Such spirits see falsities as truths, and so seeing them they induce not themselves only but also those they flow into to believe them. Such spirits, however, have been gradually removed, because they began to lure others into evil and to gain control over them. Enthusiastic spirits are distinguished from other spirits by their believing themselves to be the Holy Spirit, and believing what they say to be Divine. As man honors such spirits with Divine worship they do not attempt to harm him. I have sometimes talked with them, and the wicked things they infused into their worshipers were then disclosed. They dwell together toward the left, in a desert place.


250. But to speak with the angels of heaven is granted only to those who are in truths from good, especially to those who are in the acknowledgment of the Lord and of the Divine in his human, because this is the truth in which the heavens are. For, as it has been shown above, the Lord is the God of heaven (n. 2-6); it is the Divine of the Lord that makes heaven (n. 7-12); the Divine of the Lord in heaven is love to him and charity toward the neighbor from him (n. 13-19); the whole heaven in one complex reflects a single man; also every society of heaven; and every angel is in complete human form, and this from the Divine human of the Lord (n. 59-86). All of which makes evident that only those whose interiors are opened by Divine Truths, even to the Lord, are able to speak with the angels of heaven, since it is into these truths with man that the Lord flows, and when the Lord flows in, heaven also flows in. Divine truths open the interiors of man because man was so created as to be in respect to his internal man an image of heaven, and in respect to his external an image of the world (n. 57); and the internal man is opened only by means of Divine truth going forth from the Lord, because that is the light of heaven and the life of heaven (n. 126-140).


251. The influx of the Lord himself into man is into his forehead, and from that into the whole face, because the forehead of man corresponds to love, and the face corresponds to all his interiors.179 The influx of spiritual angels into man is into his head everywhere, from the forehead and temples to the whole part that contains the cerebrum, because that region of the head corresponds to intelligence; but the influx of celestial angels is into that part of the head that contains the cerebellum, and is called the occiput, from the ears all around even to the neck, for that region corresponds to wisdom. All the speech of angels with man enters by these ways into his thought; and by this means I have perceived what angels they were that spoke with me.


252. Those who talk with the angels of heaven also see the things that exist in heaven, because they are then seeing in the light of heaven, for their interiors are in that light; also the angels through them see the things that are on the earth,180 because in them heaven is conjoined to the world and the world is conjoined to heaven. For (as has been said above, n. 246), when the angels turn themselves to man they so conjoin themselves to him as to be wholly unaware that what pertains to the man is not theirs—not only what pertains to his speech but also to his sight and hearing; while man, on the other hand, is wholly unaware that the things that flow in through the angels are not his. Such was the conjunction that existed between angels of heaven and the most ancient people on this earth, and for this reason their times were called the Golden Age. Because this race acknowledged the Divine under a human form, that is, the Lord, they talked with the angels of heaven as with their friends, and angels of heaven talked with them as with their friends; and in them heaven and the world made one. But after those times man gradually separated himself from heaven by loving himself more than the Lord and the world more than heaven, and in consequence began to feel the delights of the love of self and the world as separate from the delights of heaven, and finally to such an extent as to be ignorant of any other delight. Then his interiors that had been open into heaven were closed up, while his exteriors were open to the world; and when this takes place man is in light in regard to all things of the world, but in thick darkness in regard to all things of heaven.


253. Since those times it is only rarely that anyone has talked with the angels of heaven; but some have talked with spirits who are not in heaven. This is so because man’s interior and exterior faculties are such that they are turned either toward the Lord as their common center (n. 124), or toward self, that is, backwards from the Lord. Those that are turned toward the Lord are also turned toward heaven. But those that are turned toward self, are turned also toward the world. And to elevate these is a difficult matter; nevertheless the Lord elevates them as much as is possible, by turning the love about; which is done by means of truths from the Word.


254. I have been told how the Lord spoke with the prophets through whom the Word was given. He did not speak with them as he did with the ancients, by an influx into their interiors, but through spirits who were sent to them, whom he filled with his look, and thus inspired with the words which they dictated to the prophets; so that it was not influx but dictation. And as the words came forth directly from the Lord, each one of them was filled with the Divine and contains within it an internal sense, which is such that the angels of heaven understand the words in a heavenly and spiritual sense, while men understand them in a natural sense. Thus has the Lord conjoined heaven and the world by means of the Word. How the Lord fills spirits with the Divine by his look has also been made clear. A spirit that has been filled by the Lord with the Divine does not know otherwise than that he is the Lord, and that it is the Divine that is speaking; and this continues until he has finished speaking. After that he perceives and acknowledges that he is a spirit, and that he spoke from the Lord and not from himself. Because this was the state of the spirits who spoke with the prophets they said that it was Jehovah that spoke; the spirits even called themselves Jehovah, as can be seen both from the prophetical and historical parts of the Word.


255. That the nature of the conjunction of angels and spirits with man may be understood, I am permitted to mention some notable things by which it may be elucidated and verified. When angels and spirits turn themselves to man they do not know otherwise than that the man’s language is their own and that they have no other language; and for the reason that they are there in the man’s language, and not in their own, which they have forgotten. But as soon as they turn themselves away from the man they are in their own angelic and spiritual language, and know nothing about the man’s language. I have had a like experience when in company with angels and in a state like theirs. I then talked with them in their language and knew nothing of my own, having forgotten it; but as soon as I ceased to be present with them I was in my own language.


[2] Another notable fact is that when angels and spirits turn themselves to a man they are able to talk with him at any distance; they have talked with me at a considerable distance as audibly as when they were near. But when they turn themselves away from man and talk with each other man hears nothing at all of what they are saying, even if it be close to his ear. From this it was made clear that all conjunction in the spiritual world is determined by the way they turn.


[3] Another notable fact is that many spirits together can talk with a man, and the man with them; for they send one of their number to the man with whom they wish to speak, and the spirit sent turns himself to the man and the rest of them turn to their spirit and thus concentrate their thoughts, which the spirit utters; and the spirit then does not know otherwise than that he is speaking from himself, and they do not know otherwise than that they are speaking. Thus also is the conjunction of many with one effected by turning.181 But of these emissary spirits, who are also called subjects, and of communication by means of them, more will be said hereafter.


256. An angel or spirit is not permitted to speak with a man from his own memory, but only from the man’s memory; for angels and spirits have a memory as well as man. If a spirit were to speak from his own memory with a man the man would not know otherwise than that the thoughts then in his mind were his own, although they were the spirit’s thoughts. This would be like the recollection of something which the man had never heard or seen. That this is so has been given me to know from experience. This is the source of the belief held by some of the ancients that after some thousands of years they were to return into their former life, and into everything they had done, and in fact, had returned. This they concluded because at times there came to them a sort of recollection of things that they had never seen or heard. This came from an influx from the memory of spirits into their ideas of thought.


257. There are also spirits called natural and corporeal spirits. When these come to a man they do not conjoin themselves with his thought, like other spirits, but enter into his body, and occupy all his senses, and speak through his mouth, and act through his members, believing at the time that all things of the man are theirs. These are the spirits that obsess man. But such spirits have been cast into hell by the Lord, and thus wholly removed; and in consequence such obsessions are not possible at the present time.182






Writings in Heaven



258. As the angels have speech, and their speech consists of words, they also have writings; and by writing as well as by speech they give expression to what is in their minds. At times I have had papers sent to me, traced with written words precisely like manuscripts in the world, and others like printed sheets; and I was able to read them in a like way, but was allowed to get from them only an idea here and there; for the reason that it is not in accordance with Divine order for man to be taught by writings from heaven; but he must be taught by means of the Word only; for it is only by means of the Word that there is communication and conjunction of heaven with the world, thus of the Lord with man. That papers written in heaven were seen also by the prophets is shown in Ezekiel:


When I looked, behold a hand was put forth by a spirit unto me, and a roll of a book was therein which he unrolled in my sight; it was written on the front and on the back (Ezek. 2:9, 10).


And in John:


I saw upon the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the back, sealed up with seven seals (Rev. 5:1).


259. The existence of writings in the heavens is a provision of the Lord for the sake of the Word; for the Word in its essence is Divine truth, and from it is all heavenly wisdom, both with men and with angels; for the Word was dictated by the Lord, and what is dictated by the Lord passes through all the heavens in order and terminates with man. Thereby it is adapted both to the wisdom of angels and the intelligence of men. Thereby, too, the angels have a Word, and read it the same as men do on the earth, and also draw from it their doctrinals, and preach from it (n. 221). It is the same Word; but its natural sense, which is the sense of the letter with us, does not exist in heaven, but only the spiritual sense, which is its internal sense. What this sense is can be seen in the small treatise White Horse (spoken of in Revelation).


260. A little paper was at one time sent to me from heaven, on which there were a few words only written in Hebrew letters, and I was told that every letter involved arcana of wisdom, and that these arcana were contained in the inflections and curvatures of the letters, and thus also in the sounds. This made clear to me what is signified by these words of the Lord:


Verily I say unto you, until heaven and earth pass away, one iota or one tittle shall not pass away from the law (Matt. 5:18).


That the Word in every tittle of it is Divine is known in the church; but just where the Divine lies hid in every tittle has not been known heretofore, and therefore shall be told. In the inmost heaven the writing consists of various inflected and circumflected forms, and the inflections and circumflections are in accordance with the forms of heaven. By means of these angels express the arcana of their wisdom, and also many things that they are unable to express in spoken words; and what is wonderful, the angels know this writing without training or a teacher, it being implanted in them like their speech (see n. 236); therefore this writing is heavenly writing. It is implanted because all extension of thoughts and affections and consequent communication of intelligence and wisdom of the angels proceeds in accordance with the form of heaven (n. 201); and for the same reason their writing flows into that form. I have been told that the most ancient people on this earth, before letters were invented, had such writing; and that it was transferred into the letters of the Hebrew language, and these letters in ancient times were all inflected, and none of them, as at present, were bounded by straight lines. Thus it is that in the Word Divine things and arcana of heaven are contained even in its iotas, points, and tittles.


261. This writing in characters of a heavenly form is in use in the inmost heaven, the angels of which surpass all others in wisdom. By means of these characters they express the affections, from which thoughts flow and follow in order in accordance with the subject treated of. Consequently these writings, which I have also been permitted to see, involve arcana which thought cannot exhaust. But such writings do not exist in the lower heavens. The writings there resemble the writings in the world, having like characters, and yet they are not intelligible to man, because they are in angelic language; and angelic language is such that it has nothing in common with human languages (n. 237), since by the vowels they express affections, and by the consonants the ideas of thought from the affections, and by the words from these the sense of the matter (see above, n. 236, 241). Moreover, in this writing, which I have also seen, more is involved in a few words than a man can express in several pages. In this way they have the Word written in the lower heavens; but in the inmost heaven in heavenly characters.


262. It is a notable fact that the writings in the heavens flow naturally from their very thoughts, and this so easily that the thought puts itself forth, as it were, and the hand never hesitates in the choice of a word, because both the words they speak and those they write correspond to the ideas of their thought; and all correspondence is natural and spontaneous. There are also writings in the heavens that exist without the aid of the hand, from mere correspondence with the thoughts; but these are not permanent.


263. I have also seen writings from heaven made up of mere numbers set down in order and in a series, just as in writings made up of letters and words; and I have been taught that this writing is from the inmost heaven, and that their heavenly writing (spoken of above, n. 260, 261), when the thought from it flows down, is set forth before the angels of the lower heavens in numbers, and that this numerical writing likewise involves arcana, some of which can neither be comprehended by thought nor expressed by words. For all numbers correspond, and have a meaning, the same as words do, in accordance with the correspondence;183 yet with the difference that in numbers generals are involved, and in words particulars; and as one general involves innumerable particulars, so more arcana are involved in numerical writing than in literal writing. From this I could see that in the Word numbers as well as words signify things. What the simple numbers signify, as 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, and what the compound numbers, as 20, 30, 50, 70, 100, 144, 1000, 10,000, 12,000, and others, may be seen in Arcana Coelestia, where they are treated of. In this writing in heaven, a number is always prefixed on which those following in a series depend as on their subject; for that number is as it were an index to the matter treated of, and from it is the determination of the numbers that follow to the particular point.


264. Those who know nothing about heaven, and who are unwilling to have any other idea of it than as of something purely atmospheric, in which the angels fly about as intellectual minds, having no sense of hearing or seeing, are unable to conceive that the angels have speech and writing; for they place the existence of everything real in what is material; and yet the writings in heaven have as real an existence as those in the world, and the angels there have everything that is useful for life and useful for wisdom.






The Wisdom of the Angels of Heaven



265. The nature of angelic wisdom can scarcely be comprehended, because it so greatly transcends human wisdom that the two cannot be compared; and whatever is thus transcendent does not seem to be anything. Moreover, some truths that must enter into a description of it are as yet unknown, and until these become known they exist in the mind as shadows, and thus hide the thing as it is in itself. Nevertheless, these truths can be known, and when known be comprehended, provided the mind takes any interest in them; for interest carries light with it because it is from love; and upon those who love the things pertaining to Divine and heavenly wisdom light shines forth from heaven and gives enlightenment.


266. What the wisdom of the angels is can be inferred from the fact that they are in the light of heaven, and the light of heaven in its essence is Divine truth or Divine wisdom; and this light enlightens at the same time their inner sight, or sight of the mind, and their outer sight, or sight of the eyes. (That the light of heaven is Divine truth or Divine wisdom may be seen above, n. 126-133.) The angels are also in heavenly heat, which in its essence is Divine good or Divine love, and from that they have an affection and longing to become wise. (That the heat of heaven is Divine good or Divine love may be seen above, n. 133-140.) That the angels are in wisdom, even to the extent that they may be called wisdoms, follows from the fact that their thoughts and affections all flow in accordance with the heavenly form, and this form is the form of Divine wisdom; also that their interiors, which are recipients of wisdom, are arranged in that form. (That the thoughts and affections of angels flow in accordance with the form of heaven, and consequently their intelligence and wisdom, may be seen above, n. 201-212.)


[2] That the angels have supereminent wisdom is shown also by the fact that their speech is the speech of wisdom, for it flows directly and spontaneously from thought, and their thought from their affection, thus their speech is thought from affection in outward form; consequently there is nothing to withdraw them from the Divine influx, and nothing from without such as enters into the speech of man from other thoughts. (That the speech of angels is the speech of their thought and affection may be seen above, n. 234-245.) That the angels have such wisdom is in accord with the fact that all things that they behold with their eyes and perceive by their senses agree with their wisdom, since they are correspondences of it, and thus the objects perceived are representative forms of the things that constitute their wisdom. (That all things seen in the heavens are correspondences with the interiors of angels and representations of their wisdom may be seen above, n. 170-182.)


[3] Furthermore, the thoughts of angels are not limited and contracted by ideas from space and time, as human thoughts are, for spaces and times belong to nature, and the things that belong to nature withdraw the mind from spiritual things, and deprive intellectual sight of its proper range. (That the ideas of angels are apart from time and space, and thus less limited than human ideas, may be seen above, n. 162-169 and 191-199.) Again, the thoughts of angels are neither brought down to earthly and material things, nor interrupted by anxieties about the necessities of life; thus they are not withdrawn by such things from the delights of wisdom, as the thoughts of men in the world are; for all things come to them gratuitously from the Lord; they are clothed gratuitously, are fed gratuitously, are housed gratuitously (n. 181-190), and besides this they receive delights and pleasures in the degree of their reception of wisdom from the Lord. These things have been said to make clear why it is that angels have so great wisdom.184


267. Angels are capable of receiving such wisdom because their interiors are open; and wisdom, like every other perfection, increases toward the interiors, thus to the extent that interiors are opened.185 In every angel there are three degrees of life, corresponding to the three heavens (see n. 29-40)—those in whom the first degree has been opened are in the first or outmost heaven; those in whom the second degree has been opened are in the second or middle heaven; while those in whom the third degree has been opened are in the third or inmost heaven. The wisdom of angels in the heavens is in accordance with these degrees. Therefore the wisdom of the angels of the inmost heaven immeasurably surpasses the wisdom of angels of the middle heaven, and the wisdom of these immeasurably surpasses the wisdom of angels of the outmost heaven (see above, n. 209, 210; and what degrees are, n. 38). There are such differences because the things which are in the higher degree are particulars, and those in the lower degree are generals, and generals are containers of particulars. Particulars compared with generals are as thousands or myriads to one; and such is the wisdom of the angels of a higher heaven compared with the wisdom of the angels of a lower heaven. In like manner the wisdom of the latter surpasses the wisdom of man, for man is in a bodily state and in those things that belong to the bodily senses, and man’s bodily sense belongs to the lowest degree. This makes clear what kind of wisdom those possess who think from things of sense, that is, who are called sensual men, namely, that they have no wisdom, but merely knowledge.186 But it is otherwise with men whose thoughts are raised above the things of sense, and especially with those whose interiors have been opened even into the light of heaven.


268. It can be seen how great the wisdom of angels is from the fact that in the heavens there is a communication of all things; intelligence and wisdom are communicated from one to another, and heaven is a common sharing of all goods; and this for the reason that heavenly love is such that it wishes what is its own to be another’s; consequently no one in heaven perceives his own good in himself to be good unless it is also in another; and this is the source of the happiness of heaven. This the angels derive from the Lord, for such is his Divine love. That there is such a communication of all things in the heavens it has been permitted me to know by experience. Certain simple spirits were at one time taken up into heaven, and when there they entered into angelic wisdom, and then understood things that they were never before able to comprehend, and spoke things that they were unable to utter in their former state.


269. The wisdom of the angels is indescribable in words; it can only be illustrated by some general things. Angels can express in a single word what a man cannot express in a thousand words. Again, a single angelic word contains innumerable things that cannot be expressed in the words of human language; for in each of the things uttered by angels there are arcana of wisdom in continuous connection that human knowledges never reach. Again, what the angels fail to express in the words of their speech they make up by the tone, in which there is an affection for the things in their order; for (as has been said above, n. 236, 241) tones express affections, as words express ideas of thought from the affections; and for this reason the things heard in heaven are said to be ineffable. So, too, the angels are able to express in a few words every least thing written in an entire volume, and give to every word meanings that elevate the mind to interior wisdom; for their speech is such as to be in accord with their affections, and each word is in accord with their ideas; and their words are varied in infinite ways in accord with the series of things which in complex are in the thought.


[2] Still again, the interior angels are able to perceive from the tone and from a few words the entire life of one speaking; for from the tone as varied by the ideas in the words they perceive his ruling love upon which, as it were, every particular of his life is inscribed.187 All this makes clear the nature of angelic wisdom. In comparison with human wisdom it is as a myriad to one, or as the moving forces of the whole body, which are numberless, to the activities from them which appear to human sense as a single thing, or as the thousand particulars of an object seen under a perfect microscope to the one obscure thing seen by the naked eye.


[3] Let me illustrate the subject by an example. An angel from his wisdom was describing regeneration, and brought forward arcana respecting it in their order even to some hundreds, filling each of them with ideas in which there were interior arcana, and this from beginning to end; for he explained how the spiritual man is conceived anew, is carried as it were in the womb, is born, grows up and is gradually perfected. He said that the number of arcana could be increased even to thousands, and that those told were only about the regeneration of the external man, while there were numberless more about the regeneration of the internal man. From these and other like things heard from the angels it has been made clear to me how great is their wisdom, and how great in comparison is the ignorance of man, who scarcely knows what regeneration is, and is ignorant of every least step of the process when he is being regenerated.


270. The wisdom of the angels of the third or inmost heaven shall now be described, and also how far it surpasses the wisdom of the angels of the first or outmost heaven. The wisdom of the angels of the third or inmost heaven is incomprehensible even to those who are in the outmost heaven, for the reason that the interiors of the angels of the third heaven have been opened to the third degree, while the interiors of angels of the first heaven have been opened only to the first degree; and all wisdom increases toward interiors and is perfected as these are opened (n. 208, 267).


[2] Because the interiors of the angels of the third or inmost heaven have been opened to the third degree, Divine truths are as it were inscribed on them; for the interiors of the third degree are more in the form of heaven than the interiors of the second and first degrees, and the form of heaven is from the Divine truth, thus in accord with the Divine wisdom, and this is why the truth is as it were inscribed on these angels, or are as it were instinctive or inborn in them. Therefore as soon as these angels hear genuine Divine truths they instantly acknowledge and perceive them, and afterwards see them as it were inwardly in themselves. As the angels of that heaven are such they never reason about Divine truths, still less do they dispute about any truth whether it is so or not; nor do they know what it is to believe or to have faith. They say, “What is faith? For I perceive and see that a thing is so.” This they illustrate by comparisons; for example, that it would be as when anyone with a companion, seeing a house and the various things in it and around it, should say to his companion that he ought to believe that these things exist, and that they are such as he sees them to be; or seeing a garden and trees and fruit in it, should say to his companion that he ought to have faith that there is a garden and trees and fruits, when yet he is seeing them clearly with his eyes. For this reason these angels never mention faith, and have no idea what it is; neither do they reason about Divine truths, still less do they dispute about any truth whether it is so or not.188


[3] But the angels of the first or outmost heaven do not have Divine truths thus inscribed on their interiors, because with them only the first degree of life is opened; therefore they reason about truths, and those who reason see almost nothing beyond the fact of the matter about which they are reasoning, or go no farther beyond the subject than to confirm it by certain considerations, and having confirmed it they say that it must be a matter of faith and must be believed.


[4] I have talked with angels about this, and they said that the difference between the wisdom of the angels of the third heaven and the wisdom of the angels of the first heaven is like that between what is clear and what is obscure; and the former they compared to a magnificent palace full of all things for use, surrounded on all sides by parks, with magnificent things of many kinds round about them; and as these angels are in the truths of wisdom they can enter into the palace and behold all things, and wander about in the parks in every direction and delight in it all. But it is not so with those who reason about truths, especially with those who dispute about them, as such do not see truths from the light of truth, but accept truths either from others or from the sense of the letter of the Word, which they do not interiorly understand, declaring that truths must be believed, or that one must have faith, and are not willing to have any interior sight admitted into these things.


The angels said that such are unable to reach the first threshold of the palace of wisdom, still less to enter into it and wander about in its grounds, for they stop at the first step. It is not so with those that are in truths themselves; nothing impedes these from going on and progressing without limit, for the truths they see lead them wherever they go, and into wide fields, for every truth has infinite extension and is in conjunction with manifold others.


[5] They said still further that the wisdom of the angels of the inmost heaven consists principally in this, that they see Divine and heavenly things in every single object, and wonderful things in a series of many objects; for everything that appears before their eyes is a correspondent; as when they see palaces and gardens their view does not dwell upon the things that are before their eyes, but they see the interior things from which they spring, that is, to which they correspond, and this with all variety in accordance with the aspect of the objects; thus they see innumerable things at the same time in their order and connection; and this so fills their minds with delight that they seem to be carried away from themselves. That all things that are seen in the heavens correspond to the Divine things that are in the angels from the Lord may be seen above (n. 170-176).


271. Such are the angels of the third heaven because they are in love to the Lord, and that love opens the interiors of the mind to the third degree, and is a receptacle of all things of wisdom. It must be understood also that the angels of the inmost heaven are still being continually perfected in wisdom, and this differently from the angels of the outmost heaven. The angels of the inmost heaven do not store up Divine truths in the memory and thus make out of them a kind of science; but as soon as they hear them they perceive them and apply them to the life. For this reason Divine truths are as permanent with them as if they were inscribed on them, for what is committed in such a way to the life is contained in it. But it is not so with the angels of the outmost heaven. These first store up Divine truths in the memory and stow them away with their knowledge, and draw them out therefrom to perfect their understanding by them, and will them and apply them to the life, but with no interior perception whether they are truths; and in consequence they are in comparative obscurity. It is a notable fact that the angels of the third heaven are perfected in wisdom by hearing and not by seeing. What they hear from preachings does not enter into their memory, but enters directly into their perception and will, and comes to be a matter of life; but what they see with their eyes enters into their memory, and they reason and talk about it; which shows that with them the way of hearing is the way of wisdom. This, too, is from correspondence, for the ear corresponds to obedience, and obedience belongs to the life; while the eye corresponds to intelligence, and intelligence is a matter of doctrine.189 The state of these angels is described in different parts of the Word, as in Jeremiah:


I will put my law in their mind, and write it on their heart. They shall teach no more everyone his friend and everyone his brother, saying, Know ye Jehovah; for they shall all know Me, from the least of them even unto the greatest of them (Jer. 31:33, 34).


And in Matthew:


Let your speech be Yea, yea, Nay, nay; what is more than these is from evil (Matt. 5:37).


“What is more than these is from evil” because it is not from the Lord; and inasmuch as the angels of the third heaven are in love to the Lord the truths that are in them are from the Lord. In that heaven love to the Lord is willing and doing Divine truth, for Divine truth is the Lord in heaven.


272. There is a still further reason, and this is in heaven the primary reason, why the angels are able to receive so great wisdom, namely, that they are without the love of self; for to the extent that anyone is without the love of self he can become wise in Divine things. It is that love that closes up the interiors against the Lord and heaven, and opens the exteriors and turns them toward itself; and in consequence all in whom that love rules are in thick darkness in respect to the things of heaven, however much light they may have in worldly matters. The angels, on the other hand, are in the light of wisdom because they are without the love of self, for the heavenly loves in which they are, which are love to the Lord and love toward the neighbor, open the interiors, because these loves are from the Lord and the Lord himself is in them. (That these loves constitute heaven in general, and form heaven in each one in particular, may be seen above, n. 13-19.) As heavenly loves open the interiors to the Lord so all angels turn their faces toward the Lord (n. 142); because in the spiritual world the love turns the interiors of everyone to itself, and whichever way it turns the interiors, it also turns the face, since the face there makes one with the interiors, for it is their outward form. Because the love turns the interiors and the face to itself, it also conjoins itself to them (love being spiritual conjunction), and shares its own with them. From that turning and consequent conjunction and sharing the angels have their wisdom. That all conjunction and all turning in the spiritual world are in accord may be seen above (n. 255).


273. Although the angels are continually perfected in wisdom,190 their wisdom, even to eternity, cannot become so perfect that there can be any ratio between it and the Lord’s Divine wisdom; for the Lord’s Divine wisdom is infinite and the wisdom of angels finite; and between what is infinite and what is finite no ratio is possible.


274. As it is wisdom that makes the angels perfect and constitutes their life, and as heaven with its goods flows into everyone in accordance with his wisdom, so all in heaven desire and hunger for wisdom, much as a hungry man hungers for food. So, too, knowledge, intelligence, and wisdom are spiritual nutriment, as food is natural nutriment; and the one corresponds to the other.


275. The angels in the same heaven, or in the same society of heaven, are not all in like wisdom; their wisdom differs. Those at the center are in the greatest wisdom, and those round about even to the borders are in less wisdom. The decrease of wisdom in accord with the distance from the center is like the decrease of light verging to shade (see n. 43 and 128). Their light is in the same degree as their wisdom, since the light of heaven is the Divine wisdom, and everyone is in light in the measure of his reception of wisdom. Respecting the light of heaven and the varying kinds of reception of it see above (n. 126-132).






The State of Innocence of Angels in Heaven



276. What innocence is and its nature few in the world know, and those who are in evil know nothing about it. It is, indeed, visible to the eyes, as seen in the face, speech and movements, particularly of children; and yet what innocence is, and especially that it is that in which heaven is stored up in man is unknown. In making this known let us proceed in order, and consider first the innocence of childhood, then the innocence of wisdom, and lastly the state of heaven in regard to innocence.


277. The innocence of childhood or of children is not genuine innocence, for it is innocence not in internal form but only in external form. Nevertheless one may learn from it what innocence is, since it shines forth from the face of children and from some of their movements and from their first speech, and affects those about them. It can be seen that children have no internal thought, for they do not yet know what is good and what is evil, or what is true and what is false, of which such thought consists.


[2] Consequently they have no prudence from what is their own, no purpose or deliberation, thus no end that looks to evil; neither have they anything of their own acquired from love of self and the world; they do not attribute anything to themselves, regarding all that they have as received from their parents; they are content with the few and paltry things presented to them, and find delight in them; they have no solicitude about food and clothing, and none about the future; they do not look to the world and covet many things from it; they love their parents and nurses and their child companions with whom they play in innocence; they suffer themselves to be led; they give heed and obey.


[3] And being in this state they receive everything as a matter of life; and therefore, without knowing why, they have becoming manners, and also learn to talk, and have the beginning of memory and thought, their state of innocence serving as a medium whereby these things are received and implanted. But this innocence, as has been said above, is external because it belongs to the body alone, and not to the mind;191 for their minds are not yet formed, the mind being understanding and will and thought and affection therefrom.


[4] I have been told from heaven that children are specially under the Lord’s auspices, and that they receive influx from the inmost heaven, where there is a state of innocence; that this influx passes through their interiors, and that in its passing through, their interiors are affected solely by the innocence; and for this reason innocence is shown in their faces and in some of their movements and becomes evident; and that it is this innocence by which parents are inmostly affected, and that gives rise to the love that is called storge.


278. The innocence of wisdom is genuine innocence, because it is internal, for it belongs to the mind itself, that is, to the will itself and from that to the understanding. And when there is innocence in these there is also wisdom, for wisdom belongs to the will and understanding. This is why it is said in heaven that innocence has its abode in wisdom, and that an angel has just so much of innocence as he has of wisdom. This is confirmed by the fact that those who are in a state of innocence attribute nothing of good to themselves, but regard all things as received and ascribe them to the Lord. They wish to be led by Him and not by themselves. They love everything that is good and find delight in everything that is true, because they know and perceive that loving what is good, that is, willing and doing it, is loving the Lord, and loving truth is loving the neighbor.


They live contented with their own, whether it is little or much, because they know that they receive just as much as is good for them— those receiving little for whom a little is useful, and those receiving much for whom much is useful; also they do not themselves know what is good for them, the Lord alone knowing this, who looks in all things that he provides to what is eternal.


[2] Neither are they anxious about the future; anxiety about the future they call care for the morrow, which they define as grief on account of losing or not receiving things that are not necessary for the uses of life. With companions they never act from an evil end but from what is good, just, and sincere. Acting from an evil end they call cunning, which they shun as the poison of a serpent, since it is wholly antagonistic to innocence. As they love nothing so much as to be led of the Lord, attributing all things they receive to him, they are kept apart from what is their own [proprium]; and to the extent that they are kept apart from what is their own the Lord flows into them; and in consequence of this whatever they hear from the Lord, whether through the Word or by means of preaching, they do not store up in the memory, but instantly obey it, that is, will it and do it, their will being itself their memory. These for the most part outwardly appear simple, but inwardly they are wise and prudent. These are meant by the Lord in the words,


Be ye prudent as serpents and simple as doves (Matt. 10:16).


Such is the innocence that is called the innocence of wisdom.


[3] Because innocence attributes nothing of good to itself, but ascribes all good to the Lord, and because it thus loves to be led by the Lord, and is the source of the reception of all good and truth, from which wisdom comes—because of this man is so created as to be during his childhood in external innocence, and when he becomes old in internal innocence, to the end that he may come by means of the former into the latter, and from the latter return into the former. For the same reason when a man becomes old he dwindles in body and becomes again like a child, but like a wise child, that is, an angel, for a wise child is in an eminent sense an angel. This is why in the Word, “a little child” signifies one who is innocent, and “an old man” signifies one who is wise in whom is innocence.192


279. The same is true of everyone who is being regenerated. Regeneration, as regards the spiritual man, is rebirth. Man is first introduced into the innocence of childhood, which is that one knows no truth and can do no good from himself, but only from the Lord, and desires and seeks truth only because it is truth, and good only because it is good. As man afterwards advances in age good and truth are given him by the Lord. At first he is led into a knowledge of them, then from knowledge into intelligence, and finally from intelligence into wisdom, innocence always accompanying, which consists, as has been said, in his knowing nothing of truth, and being unable to do anything good from himself, but only from the Lord. Without such a belief and such a perception of it no one can receive anything of heaven. Therein does the innocence of wisdom chiefly consist.


280. As innocence consists in being led by the Lord and not by self, so all who are in heaven are in innocence; for all who are there love to be led by the Lord, knowing that to lead themselves is to be led by what is their own, and what is one’s own is loving oneself, he that loves himself not permitting himself to be led by anyone else. Therefore, so far as an angel is in innocence he is in heaven, in other words, is in Divine good and Divine truth, for to be in these is to be in heaven. Consequently the heavens are distinguished by degrees of innocence—those who are in the outmost or first heaven are in innocence of the first or outmost degree; those who are in the middle or second heaven are in innocence of the second or middle degree; while those who are in the inmost or third heaven are in innocence of the third or inmost degree, and are therefore the veriest innocences of heaven, for more than all others they love to be led by the Lord as little children by their father; and for the same reason the Divine truth that they hear immediately from the Lord or mediately through the Word and preaching they take directly into their will and do it, thus committing it to life. And this is why their wisdom is so superior to that of the angels of the lower heavens (see n. 270, 271). These angels of the inmost heaven, being such, are nearest to the Lord from whom they receive innocence, and are so separated from what is their own that they live as it were in the Lord. Externally they appear simple, and before the eyes of the angels of the lower heavens they appear like children, that is, as very small, and not very wise, although they are the wisest of the angels of heaven; since they know that they have nothing of wisdom from themselves, and that acknowledging this is being wise. They know also that what they know is as nothing compared to what they do not know; and they say that knowing, acknowledging, and perceiving this is the first step toward wisdom. These angels have no clothing, because nakedness corresponds to innocence.193


281. I have talked much with angels about innocence, and have been told that innocence is the being [esse] of all good, and that good is therefore so far good as it has innocence in it, consequently that wisdom is so far wisdom as it partakes of innocence; and the same is true of love, charity, and faith;194 and therefore no one can enter heaven unless he possesses innocence; and this the Lord teaches when He says:


Suffer little children to come unto Me, and forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of the heavens. Verily I say unto you, Whoever shall not receive the kingdom of the heavens as a little child, he shall not enter into it (Mark 10:14, 15; Luke 18:16, 17).


Here as elsewhere in the Word “little children” mean those who are innocent. A state of innocence is also described by the Lord in Matthew 6:25-34, but by correspondences only. Good is good so far as it has innocence in it, for the reason that all good is from the Lord, and innocence is a willingness to be led by the Lord. I have also been told that truth can be conjoined to good and good to truth only by means of innocence, and therefore an angel is not an angel of heaven unless he has innocence in him; for heaven is not in anyone until good is conjoined to truth in him; and this is why the conjunction of truth and good is called the heavenly marriage, and the heavenly marriage is heaven. Again, I have been told that true marriage love derives its existence from innocence, because it derives its existence from the conjunction of good and truth, and the two minds of husband and wife are in that conjunction, and when that conjunction descends it presents the appearance of marriage love; for consorts are in mutual love, as their minds are. This is why in marriage love there is a playfulness like that of childhood and like that of innocence.195


282. Because innocence with the angels of heaven is the very being of good, it is evident that the Divine good that goes forth from the Lord is innocence itself, for it is that good that flows into angels, and affects their inmosts, and arranges and fits them for receiving all the good of heaven. It is the same with children, whose interiors are not only formed by means of innocence flowing through them from the Lord, but also are continually being fitted and arranged for receiving the good of heavenly love, since the good of innocence acts from the inmost; for that good, as has been said, is the being of all good.


From all this it can be seen that all innocence is from the Lord. For this reason the Lord is called in the Word a “lamb,” a lamb signifying innocence.196 Because innocence is the inmost in all the good of heaven, it so affects minds that when it is felt by anyone—as when an angel of the inmost heaven approaches—he seems to himself to be no longer his own master and is moved and as it were carried away by such a delight that no delight of the world seems to be anything in comparison with it. This I say from having perceived it.


283. Everyone who is in the good of innocence is affected by innocence, and is affected to the extent that he is in that good; but those who are not in the good of innocence are not affected by innocence. For this reason all who are in hell are wholly antagonistic to innocence; they do not know what it is; their antagonism is such that so far as anyone is innocent they burn to do him mischief; therefore they cannot bear to see little children; and as soon as they see them they are inflamed with a cruel desire to do them harm. From this it is clear that what is man’s own, and therefore the love of self, is antagonistic to innocence; for all who are in hell are in what is their own, and therefore in the love of self.197






The State of Peace in Heaven



284. Only those that have experienced the peace of heaven can have any perception of the peace in which the angels are. As man is unable, as long as he is in the body, to receive the peace of heaven, so he can have no perception of it, because his perception is confined to what is natural. To perceive it he must be able, in respect to thought, to be raised up and withdrawn from the body and kept in the spirit, and at the same time be with angels. In this way has the peace of heaven been perceived by me; and for this reason I am able to describe it, yet not in words as that peace is in itself, because human words are inadequate, but only as it is in comparison with that rest of mind that those enjoy who are content in God.


285. There are two inmost things of heaven, namely, innocence and peace. These are said to be inmost things because they proceed directly from the Lord. From innocence comes every good of heaven, and from peace every delight of good. Every good has its delight; and both good and delight spring from love, for whatever is loved is called good, and is also perceived as delightful. From this it follows that these two inmost things, innocence and peace, go forth from the Lord’s Divine love and move the angels from what is inmost. That innocence is the inmost of good may be seen in the preceding chapter, where the state of innocence of the angels of heaven is described. That peace is the inmost of delight from the good of innocence shall now be explained.


286. The origin of peace shall be first considered. Divine peace is in the Lord; it springs from the union of the Divine itself and the Divine human in him. The Divine of peace in heaven is from the Lord, springing from his conjunction with the angels of heaven, and in particular from the conjunction of good and truth in each angel. These are the origins of peace. From this it can be seen that peace in the heavens is the Divine inmostly affecting with blessedness everything good therefrom, and from this is every joy of heaven; also that it is in its essence the Divine joy of the Lord’s Divine love, resulting from his conjunction with heaven and with everyone there. This joy, felt by the Lord in angels and by angels from the Lord, is peace. By derivation from this the angels have everything that is blessed, delightful, and happy, or that which is called heavenly joy.198


287. Because these are the origins of peace the Lord is called “the Prince of peace,” and he declares that from him is peace and in him is peace; and the angels are called angels of peace, and heaven is called a habitation of peace, as in the following passages:


Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, God, Mighty, Father of eternity, Prince of peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end (Isa. 9:6, 7).


Jesus said, Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth give I unto you (John 14:27).


These things have I spoken unto you that in Me ye may have peace (John 16:33).


Jehovah lift up his countenance upon thee and give thee peace (Num. 6:26).


The angels of peace weep bitterly, the highways are wasted (Isa. 33:7, 8).


The work of righteousness shall be peace; and my people shall dwell in a habitation of peace (Isa. 32:17, 18).


[2] That it is Divine and heavenly peace that is meant in the Word by “peace” can be seen also from other passages where it is mentioned (as Isa. 52:7; 54:10; 59:8; Jer. 16:5; 25:37; 29:11; Hag. 2:9; Zech. 8:12; Ps. 37:37; and elsewhere). Because “peace” means the Lord and heaven, and also heavenly joy and the delight of good, “Peace be with you” was an ancient form of salutation that is still in use; and it was ratified by the Lord in his saying to the disciples whom he sent forth:


Into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house; and if a son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon it (Luke 10:5, 6).


And when the Lord himself appeared to the apostles, he said:


Peace be with you (John 20:19, 21, 26).


[3] A state of peace is also meant in the Word where it is said that:


Jehovah smelled an odor of rest (as Exod. 29:18, 25, 41; Lev. 1:9, 13, 17; 2:2, 9; 6:8, 14; 23:12, 13, 18; Num. 15:3, 7, 13; 28:6, 8, 13; 29:2, 6, 8, 13, 36).


“Odor of rest” in the heavenly sense signifies a perception of peace.199 As peace signifies the union of the Divine itself and the Divine human in the Lord, also the conjunction of the Lord with heaven and with the church, and with all who are in heaven, and with all in the church who receive him, so the Sabbath was instituted as a reminder of these things, its name meaning “rest” or “peace,” and was the most holy representative of the church. For the same reason the Lord called himself “the Lord of the Sabbath” (Matt. 12:8; Mark 2:27, 28; Luke 6:5).200


288. Because the peace of heaven is the Divine inmostly affecting with blessedness the veriest good in angels, it can be clearly perceived by them only in the delight of their hearts when they are in the good of their life, in the pleasure with which they hear truth that agrees with their good, and in gladness of mind when they perceive the conjunction of good and truth. From this it flows into all the acts and thoughts of their life, and there presents itself as joy, even in outward appearance.


[2] But peace in the heavens differs in quality and quantity in agreement with the innocence of those who are there; since innocence and peace walk hand in hand; for every good of heaven, as said above, is from innocence, and every delight of that good is from peace. Evidently, then, the same that has been said in the foregoing chapter about the state of innocence in the heavens may be said here of the state of peace there, since innocence and peace are conjoined like good and its delight; for good is felt in its delight, and delight is known from its good. This being so, it is evident that angels of the inmost or third heaven are in the third or inmost degree of peace, because they are in the third or inmost degree of innocence; and that angels of the lower heavens are in a less degree of peace, because they are in a less degree of innocence (see above n. 280).


[3] That innocence and peace go together like good and its delight can be seen in little children, who are in peace because they are in innocence, and because they are in peace are in their whole nature full of play. Yet the peace of little children is external peace; while internal peace, like internal innocence, is possible only in wisdom, and for this reason only in the conjunction of good and truth, since wisdom is from that conjunction. Heavenly or angelic peace is also possible in men who are in wisdom from the conjunction of good and truth, and who in consequence have a sense of content in God; nevertheless, while they live in the world this peace lies hidden in their interiors, but it is revealed when they leave the body and enter heaven, for their interiors are then opened.


289. As the Divine peace springs from the conjunction of the Lord with heaven, and specially from the conjunction of good and truth in each angel, so when the angels are in a state of love they are in a state of peace; for then good and truth are conjoined in them. (That the states of angels undergo successive changes may be seen above, n. 154-160.) The like is true also of a man who is being regenerated. As soon as good and truth come to be conjoined in him, which takes place especially after temptations, he comes into a state of delight from heavenly peace.201 This peace may be likened to morning or dawn in springtime, when, the night being passed, with the rising of the sun all things of the earth begin to live anew, the fragrance of growing vegetation is spread abroad with the dew that descends from heaven, and the mild vernal temperature gives fertility to the ground and imparts pleasure to the minds of men, and this because morning or dawn in the time of spring corresponds to the state of peace of angels in heaven (see n. 155).202


290. I have talked with the angels about peace, saying that what is called peace in the world is when wars and hostilities cease between kingdoms, and when enmities or discord cease among men; also that internal peace is believed to consist in rest of mind when cares are removed, especially in tranquillity and enjoyment from success in affairs. But the angels said that rest of mind and tranquillity and enjoyment from the removal of cares and success in affairs seem to be constituents of peace, but are so only with those who are in heavenly good, for only in that good is peace possible. For peace flows in from the Lord into the inmost of such, and from their inmost descends and flows down into the lower faculties, producing a sense of rest in the mind, tranquillity of disposition, and joy therefrom. But to those who are in evil peace is impossible.203 There is an appearance of rest, tranquillity, and delight when things succeed according to their wishes; but it is external peace and not at all internal, for inwardly they burn with enmity, hatred, revenge, cruelty, and many evil lusts, into which their disposition is carried whenever anyone is seen to be unfavorable to them, and which burst forth when they are not restrained by fear. Consequently the delight of such dwells in insanity, while the delight of those who are in good dwells in wisdom. The difference is like that between hell and heaven.






The Conjunction of Heaven with the Human Race



291. It is well known in the church that all good is from God, and that nothing of good is from man, consequently that no one ought to ascribe any good to himself as his own. It is also well known that evil is from the devil. Therefore those who speak from the doctrine of the church say of those who behave well, and of those who speak and preach piously, that they are led by God; but the opposite of those who do not behave well and who speak impiously. For this to be true man must have conjunction with heaven and with hell; and this conjunction must be with man’s will and with his understanding; for it is from these that the body acts and the mouth speaks. What this conjunction is shall now be told.


292. With every individual there are good spirits and evil spirits. Through good spirits man has conjunction with heaven, and through evil spirits with hell. These spirits are in the world of spirits, which lies midway between heaven and hell. This world will be described particularly hereafter. When these spirits come to a man they enter into his entire memory, and thus into his entire thought, evil spirits into the evil things of his memory and thought, and good spirits into the good things of his memory and thought. These spirits have no knowledge whatever that they are with man; but when they are with him they believe that all things of his memory and thought are their own; neither do they see the man, because nothing that is in our solar world falls into their sight.204 The Lord exercises the greatest care that spirits may not know that they are with man; for if they knew it they would talk with him, and in that case evil spirits would destroy him; for evil spirits, being joined with hell, desire nothing so much as to destroy man, not alone his soul, that is, his faith and love, but also his body. It is otherwise when spirits do not talk with man, in which case they are not aware that what they are thinking and also what they are saying among themselves is from man; for although it is from man that they talk with one another, they believe that what they are thinking and saying is their own, and everyone esteems and loves what is his own. In this way spirits are constrained to love and esteem man, although they do not know it. That such is the conjunction of spirits with man has become so well known to me from a continual experience of many years that nothing is better known to me.


293. The reason why spirits that communicate with hell are also associated with man is that man is born into evils of every kind, consequently his whole life is wholly from evil; and therefore unless spirits like himself were associated with him he could not live, nor indeed could he be withdrawn from his evils and reformed. He is therefore both held in his own life by means of evil spirits and withheld from it by means of good spirits; and by the two he is kept in equilibrium; and being in equilibrium he is in freedom, and can be drawn away from evils and turned toward good, and thus good can be implanted in him, which would not be possible at all if he were not in free dom; and freedom is possible to man only when the spirits from hell act on one side and spirits from heaven on the other, and man is between the two. Again, it has been shown that so far as a man’s life is from what he inherits, and thus from self, if he were not permitted to be in evil he would have no life; also if he were not in freedom he would have no life; also that he cannot be forced to what is good, and that what is forced does not abide; also that the good that man receives in freedom is implanted in his will and becomes as it were his own.205 These are the reasons why man has communication with hell and communication with heaven.


294. What the communication of heaven is with good spirits, and what the communication of hell is with evil spirits, and the consequent conjunction of heaven and hell with man, shall also be told. All spirits who are in the world of spirits have communication with heaven or with hell, evil spirits with hell, and good spirits with heaven. Heaven is divided into societies, and hell also. Every spirit belongs to some society, and continues to exist by influx from it, thus acting as one with it. Consequently as man is conjoined with spirits so is he conjoined with heaven or with hell, even with the society there to which he is attached by his affection or his love; for the societies of heaven are all distinguished from each other in accordance with their affections for good and truth, and the societies of hell in accordance with their affections for evil and falsity. (As to the societies of heaven see above, n. 41-45; also n. 148-151.)


295. The spirits associated with man are such as he himself is in respect to his affection or love; but the Lord associates good spirits with him, while evil spirits are invited by the man himself. The spirits with man, however, are changed in accordance with the changes of his affections; thus there are some spirits that are with him in early childhood, others in boyhood, others in youth and manhood, and others in old age. In early childhood those spirits are present who are in innocence and who thus communicate with the heaven of innocence, which is the inmost or third heaven; in boyhood those spirits are present who are in affection for knowing, and who thus communicate with the outmost or first heaven; in youth and manhood spirits are present who are in affection for what is true and good, and in consequent intelligence, and who thus communicate with the second or middle heaven; while in old age spirits are present who are in wisdom and innocence, and who thus communicate with the inmost or third heaven. But the Lord maintains this association with such as can be reformed and regenerated. It is otherwise with such as cannot be reformed or regenerated. While with these also good spirits are associated, that they may be thereby withheld from evil as much as possible, they are directly conjoined with evil spirits who communicate with hell, whereby they have such spirits with them as are like themselves. If they are lovers of self or lovers of gain, or lovers of revenge, or lovers of adultery, like spirits are present, and as it were dwell in their evil affections; and man is incited by these, except so far as he can be kept from evil by good spirits, and they cling to him, and do not withdraw, so far as the evil affection prevails. Thus it is that a bad man is conjoined to hell and a good man is conjoined to heaven.


296. Man is governed by the Lord through spirits because he is not in the order of heaven, for he is born into evils which are of hell, thus into the complete opposite of Divine order; consequently he needs to be brought back into order, and this can only be done mediately by means of spirits. It would be otherwise if man were born into the good that is in accord with the order of heaven; then he would be governed by the Lord not through spirits, but by means of the order itself, thus by means of general influx. By means of this influx man is governed in respect to whatever goes forth from his thought and will into act, that is, in respect to speech and acts; for both of these proceed in harmony with natural order, and therefore with these the spirits associated with man have nothing in common. Animals also are governed by means of this general influx from the spiritual world, because they are in the order of their life, and animals have not been able to pervert and destroy that order because they have no rational faculty.206 What the difference between man and beasts is may be seen above (n. 39).


297. As to what further concerns the conjunction of heaven with the human race, let it be noted that the Lord himself flows into each man, in accord with the order of heaven, both into his inmosts and into his outmosts, and arranges him for receiving heaven, and governs his outmosts from his inmosts, and at the same time his inmosts from his outmosts, thus holding in connection each thing and all things in man. This influx of the Lord is called direct influx; while the other influx that is effected through spirits is called mediate influx. The latter is maintained by means of the former. Direct influx, which is that of the Lord himself, is from his Divine human, and is into man’s will and through his will into his understanding, and thus into his good and through his good into his truth, or what is the same thing, into his love and through his love into his faith, and not the reverse; still less is it into faith apart from love or into truth apart from good or into understanding that is not from will. This Divine influx is unceasing, and in the good is received in good, but not in the evil; for in them it is either rejected or suffocated or perverted; and in consequence they have an evil life which in a spiritual sense is death.207


298. The spirits who are with man, both those conjoined with heaven and those conjoined with hell, never flow into man from their own memory and its thought, for if they should flow in from their own thought, whatever belonged to them would seem to man to be his (see above, n. 256). Nevertheless there flows into man through them out of heaven an affection belonging to the love of good and truth, and out of hell an affection belonging to the love of evil and falsity. Therefore as far as man’s affection agrees with the affection that flows in, so far that affection is received by him in his thought, since man’s interior thought is wholly in accord with his affection or love; but so far as man’s affection does not agree with that affection it is not received. Evidently, then, since thought is not introduced into man through spirits, but only an affection for good and an affection for evil, man has choice, because he has freedom; and is thus able by his thought to receive good and reject evil, since he knows from the Word what is good and what is evil. Moreover, whatever he receives by thought from affection is appropriated to him; but whatever he does not receive by thought from affection is not appropriated to him. All this makes evident the nature of the influx of good out of heaven with man, and the nature of the influx of evil out of hell.


299. I have also been permitted to learn the source of human anxiety, grief of mind, and interior sadness, which is called melancholy. There are spirits not as yet in conjunction with hell, because they are in their first state; these will be described hereafter when treating of the world of spirits. Such spirits love things undigested and pernicious, such as pertain to food becoming foul in the stomach; consequently they are present with man in such things because they find delight in them; and they talk there with one another from their own evil affection. The affection that is in their speech flows in from this source into man; and when this affection is the opposite of man’s affection there arises in him sadness and melancholy anxiety; but when it agrees with it, it becomes in him gladness and cheerfulness. These spirits appear near to the stomach, some to the left and some to the right of it, and some beneath and some above, also nearer and more remote, thus variously in accordance with their affections. That this is the source of anxiety of mind has been shown and proved to me by much experience. I have seen these spirits, I have heard them, I have felt the anxieties arising from them, and I have talked with them; when they have been driven away the anxiety ceased; when they returned the anxiety returned; and I have noted the increase and decrease of it according to their approach and removal. From this it has been made clear to me why some who do not know what conscience is, because they have no conscience, ascribe its pangs to the stomach.208


300. The conjunction of heaven with man is not like the conjunction of one man with another, but the conjunction is with the interiors of man’s mind, that is, with his spiritual or internal man; although there is a conjunction with his natural or external man by means of correspondences, which will be described in the next chapter where the conjunction of heaven with man by means of the Word will be treated of.


301. It will also be shown in the next chapter that the conjunction of heaven with the human race and of the human race with heaven is such that one has its permanent existence with the other.


302. I have talked with angels about the conjunction of heaven with the human race, saying that while the man of the church declares that all good is from God, and that angels are with man, yet few believe that angels are conjoined to man, still less that they are in his thought and affection. The angels replied that they knew that such a belief and such a mode of speaking still exist in the world, and especially, to their surprise, within the church, where the Word is present to teach men about heaven and its conjunction with man; nevertheless, there is such a conjunction that man is unable to think the least thing unless spirits are associated with him, and on this his spiritual life depends. They said that the cause of ignorance in this matter is man’s belief that he lives from himself, and that he has no connection with the first being [esse] of life; together with his not knowing that this connection exists by means of the heavens; and yet if that connection were broken man would instantly fall dead. If man only believed, as is really true, that all good is from the Lord and all evil from hell, he would neither make the good in him a matter of merit nor would evil be imputed to him; for he would then look to the Lord in all the good he thinks and does, and all the evil that flows in would be cast down to hell from which it comes. But because man does not believe that anything flows into him either from heaven or from hell, and therefore supposes that all things that he thinks and wills are in himself and therefore from himself, he appropriates the evil to himself, and the good that flows in he defiles with merit.






Conjunction of Heaven with Man by Means of the Word



303. Those who think from interior reason can see that there is a connection of all things through intermediates with the First, and that whatever is not in connection is dissipated. For they know, when they think about it, that nothing can have permanent existence from itself, but only from what is prior to itself, thus all things from a First; also that the connection with what is prior is like the connection of an effect with its effecting cause; for when the effecting cause is taken away from its effect the effect is dissolved and dispersed. Because the learned thought thus they saw and said that permanent existence is a perpetual springing forth; thus that all things have permanent existence from a First; and as they sprang from that First so they perpetually spring forth, that is, have permanent existence from it. But what the connection of everything is with that which is prior to itself, thus with the First which is the source of all things, cannot be told in a few words, because it is various and diverse. It can only be said in general that there is a connection of the natural world with the spiritual world, and that in consequence there is a correspondence of all things in the natural world with all things in the spiritual (see n. 103-115); also that there is a connection and consequently a correspondence of all things of man with all things of heaven (see n. 87-102).


304. Man is so created as to have a conjunction and connection with the Lord, but with the angels of heaven only an affiliation. Man has affiliation with the angels, but not conjunction, because in respect to the interiors of his mind man is by creation like an angel, having a like will and a like understanding. Consequently if a man has lived in accordance with the Divine order he becomes after death an angel, with the same wisdom as an angel. Therefore when the conjunction of man with heaven is spoken of, his conjunction with the Lord and affiliation with the angels is meant; for heaven is heaven from the Lord’s Divine, and not from what is strictly the angels’ own [proprium]. That it is the Lord’s Divine that makes heaven may be seen above (n. 7-12).


[2] But man has, beyond what the angels have, that he is not only in respect to his interiors in the spiritual world, but also at the same time in respect to his exteriors in the natural world. His exteriors which are in the natural world are all things of his natural or external memory and of his thought and imagination therefrom; in general, knowledges and sciences with their delights and pleasures so far as they savor of the world, also many pleasures belonging to the senses of the body, together with his senses themselves, his speech, and his actions. And all these are the outmosts in which the Lord’s Divine influx terminates; for that influx does not stop midway, but goes on to its outmosts. All this shows that the outmost of Divine order is in man; and being the outmost it is also the base and foundation.


[3] As the Lord’s Divine influx does not stop midway but goes on to its outmosts, as has been said, and as this middle part through which it passes is the angelic heaven, while the outmost is in man, and as nothing can exist unconnected, it follows that the connection and conjunction of heaven with the human race is such that one has its permanent existence from the other, and that the human race apart from heaven would be like a chain without a hook; and heaven without the human race would be like a house without a foundation.209


305. But man has severed this connection with heaven by turning his exteriors away from heaven, and turning them to the world and to self by means of his love of self and of the world, thereby so withdrawing himself that he no longer serves as a basis and foundation for heaven; therefore the Lord has provided a medium to serve in place of this base and foundation for heaven, and also for the conjunction of heaven with man. This medium is the Word. How the Word serves as such a medium has been shown in many places in Arcana Coelestia, all of which may be seen gathered up in the little work White Horse (mentioned in Revelation); also in the appendix to the New Jerusalem and Its Heavenly Doctrine, from which some notes are here appended.210


306. I have been told from heaven that the most ancient people, because their interiors were turned heavenwards, had direct revelation, and by this means there was at that time a conjunction of the Lord with the human race. After their times, however, there was no such direct revelation, but there was a mediate revelation by means of correspondences, inasmuch as all their Divine worship then consisted of correspondences, and for this reason the churches of that time were called representative churches. For it was then known what correspondence is and what representation is, and that all things on the earth correspond to spiritual things in heaven and in the church, or what is the same, represent them; and therefore the natural things that constituted the externals of their worship served them as mediums for thinking spiritually, that is, thinking with the angels. When the knowledge of correspondences and representations had been blotted out of remembrance a Word was written, in which all the words and their meanings are correspondences, and thus contain a spiritual or internal sense, in which are the angels; and in consequence, when a man reads the Word and perceives it according to the sense of the letter or the outer sense, the angels perceive it according to the internal or spiritual sense; for all the thought of angels is spiritual while the thought of man is natural. These two kinds of thought appear diverse; nevertheless they are one because they correspond. Thus it was that when man had separated himself from heaven and had severed the bond, the Lord provided a medium of conjunction of heaven with man by means of the Word.


307. How heaven is conjoined with man by means of the Word I will illustrate by some passages from it. “The New Jerusalem” is described in Revelation in these words:


I saw a new heaven and a new earth, and the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. And I saw the holy city New Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven. The city was foursquare, its length as great as its breadth; and an angel measured the city with a reed, twelve thousand furlongs; the length, the breadth, and the height of it are equal. And he measured the wall thereof, an hundred and forty-four cubits, the measure of a man, that is, of an angel. The building of the wall was of jasper; but the city itself was pure gold, and like unto pure glass; and the foundations of the wall were adorned with every precious stone. The twelve gates were twelve pearls; and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass (Rev. 21:1, 2, 16-19, 21).


When man reads these words he understands them merely in accordance with the sense of the letter, namely, that the visible heaven with the earth is to perish, and a new heaven is to come into existence; and upon the new earth the holy city Jerusalem is to descend, with all its dimensions as here described. But the angels that are with man understand these things in a wholly different way, that is, everything that man understands naturally they understand spiritually.


[2] By “the new heaven and the new earth” they understand a new church; by “the city Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven” they understand its heavenly doctrine revealed by the Lord; by “its length, breadth, and height, which are equal,” and “twelve thousand furlongs,” they understand all the goods and truths of that doctrine in the complex; by its “wall” they understand the truths protecting it; by “the measure of the wall, a hundred and forty-four cubits, which is the measure of a man, that is, of an angel,” they understand all those protecting truths in the complex and their character; by its “twelve gates, which were of pearls,” they understand introductory truths, “pearls” signifying such truths; by “the foundations of the wall, which were of precious stones,” they understand the knowledge on which that doctrine is founded; by “the gold like unto pure glass,” of which the city and its street were made, they understand the good of love which makes the doctrine and its truths transparent. Thus do the angels perceive all these things; and therefore not as man perceives them. The natural ideas of man thus pass into the spiritual ideas with the angels without their knowing anything of the sense of the letter of the Word, that is, about “a new heaven and a new earth,” “a new city Jerusalem,” its “wall, the foundations of the wall, and its dimensions.” And yet the thoughts of angels make one with the thoughts of man, because they correspond; they make one almost the same as the words of a speaker make one with the understanding of them by a hearer who attends solely to the meaning and not to the words. All this shows how heaven is conjoined with man by means of the Word.


[3] Let us take another example from the Word:


In that day there shall be a highway from Egypt to Assyria, and Assyria shall come into Egypt and Egypt into Assyria; and the Egyptians shall serve Assyria. In that day shall Israel be a third to Egypt and to Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the land, which Jehovah of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be my people the Egyptian, and the Assyrian the work of my hands, and Israel mine inheritance (Isa. 19:23-25).


What man thinks when these words are read, and what the angels think, can be seen from the sense of the letter of the Word and from its internal sense. Man from the sense of the letter thinks that the Egyptians and Assyrians are to be converted to God and accepted, and are then to become one with the Israelitish nation; but angels in accordance with the internal sense think of the man of the spiritual church who is here described in that sense, whose spiritual is “Israel,” whose natural is the “Egyptian,” and whose rational, which is the middle, is the “Assyrian.”211 Nevertheless, these two senses are one because they correspond; and therefore when the angels thus think spiritually and man naturally they are conjoined almost as body and soul are; in fact, the internal sense of the Word is its soul and the sense of the letter is its body. Such is the Word throughout. This shows that it is a medium of conjunction of heaven with man, and that its literal sense serves as a base and foundation.


308. There is also a conjunction of heaven by means of the Word with those who are outside of the church where there is no Word; for the Lord’s church is universal, and is with all who acknowledge the Divine and live in charity. Moreover, such are taught after death by the angels and receive Divine truths;212 on which subject more may be seen below, in the chapter on the heathen. The universal church on the earth in the sight of the Lord resembles a single man, just as heaven does (see n. 59-72); but the church where the Word is and where the Lord is known by means of it is like the heart and lungs in that man. It is known that all the viscera and members of the entire body draw their life from the heart and lungs through various derivations; and it is thus that those of the human race live who are outside of the church where the Word is, and who constitute the members of that man. Again, the conjunction of heaven with those who are at a distance by means of the Word may be compared to light radiating from a center all around. The Divine light is in the Word, and there the Lord with heaven is present, and from that presence those at a distance are in light; but it would be otherwise if there were no Word. This may be more clearly seen from what has been shown above respecting the form of heaven in accordance with which all who are in heaven have affiliation and communication. But while this arcanum may be comprehended by those who are in spiritual light, it cannot be comprehended by those who are only in natural light; for innumerable things are clearly seen by those who are in spiritual light that are not seen or are seen obscurely as a single thing by those who are only in natural light.


309. Unless such a Word had been given on this earth the man of this earth would have been separated from heaven; and if separated from heaven he would have ceased to be rational, for the human rational exists by an influx of the light of heaven. Again, the man of this earth is such that he is not capable of receiving direct revelation and of being taught about Divine truths by such revelation, as the inhabitants of other earths are, that have been especially described in another small work. For the man of this earth is more in worldly things, that is, in externals, than the men of other earths, and it is internal things that are receptive of revelation; if it were received in external things the truth would not be understood. That such is the man of this earth is clearly evident from the state of those who are within the church, which is such that while they know from the Word about heaven, about hell, about the life after death, still in heart they deny these things; although among them there are some who have acquired a preeminent reputation for learning, and who might for that reason be supposed to be wiser than others.


310. I have at times talked with angels about the Word, saying that it is despised by some on account of its simple style; and that nothing whatever is known about its internal sense, and for this reason it is not believed that so much wisdom lies hid in it. The angels said that although the style of the Word seems simple in the sense of the letter, it is such that nothing can ever be compared to it in excellence, since Divine wisdom lies concealed not only in the meaning as a whole but also in each word; and that in heaven this wisdom shines forth. They wished to declare that this wisdom is the light of heaven, because it is Divine truth, for that which shines in heaven is the Divine truth (see n. 132). Again, they said that without such a Word there would be no light of heaven with the men of our earth, nor would there be any conjunction of heaven with them; for there is conjunction only so far as the light of heaven is present with man, and that light is present only so far as Divine truth is revealed to man by means of the Word. This conjunction by means of the correspondence of the spiritual sense of the Word with its natural sense is unknown to man, because the man of this earth knows nothing about the spiritual thought and speech of angels, and how it differs from the natural thought and speech of men; and until this is known it cannot in the least be known what the internal sense is, and that such conjunction is therefore possible by means of that sense. They said, furthermore, that if this sense were known to man, and if man in reading the Word were to think in accordance with some knowledge of it, he would come into interior wisdom, and would be still more conjoined with heaven, since by this means he would enter into ideas like the ideas of the angels.






Heaven and Hell Are from the Human Race



311. In the Christian world it is wholly unknown that heaven and hell are from the human race, for it is believed that in the beginning angels were created and heaven was thus formed; also that the devil or satan was an angel of light, but having rebelled he was cast down with his crew, and thus hell was formed. The angels never cease to wonder at such a belief in the Christian world, and still more that nothing is really known about heaven, when in fact that is the primary principle of all doctrine in the church. But since such ignorance prevails they rejoice in heart that it has pleased the Lord to reveal to mankind at this time many things about heaven and about hell, thereby dispelling as far as possible the darkness that has been daily increasing because the church has come to its end.


[2] They wish for this reason that I should declare from their lips that in the entire heaven there is not a single angel who was created such from the beginning, nor in hell any devil who was created an angel of light and cast down; but that all, both in heaven and in hell, are from the human race; in heaven those who lived in the world in heavenly love and belief, in hell those who lived in infernal love and belief, also that it is hell taken as a whole that is called the devil and satan—the name devil being given to the hell that is behind, where those are that are called evil genii, and the name satan being given to the hell that is in front, where those are that are called evil spirits.213 The character of these hells will be described in the following pages.


[3] The angels said that the Christian world had gathered such a belief about those in heaven and those in hell from some passages in the Word understood according to the mere sense of the letter not illustrated and explained by genuine doctrine from the Word; yet the sense of the letter of the Word until illuminated by genuine doctrine, draws the mind in different directions, and this begets ignorance, heresies, and errors.214


312. The man of the church also derives this belief from his believing that no man comes into heaven or into hell until the time of the final judgment; and about that he has accepted the opinion that all visible things will perish at that time and new things will come into existence, and that the soul will then return into its body, and from that union man will again live as a man. This belief involves the other—that angels were created such from the beginning; for it is impossible to believe that heaven and hell are from the human race when it is believed that no man can go there until the end of the world.


[2] But that men might be convinced that this is not true it has been granted me to be in company with angels, and also to talk with those who are in hell, and this now for some years, sometimes continuously from morning until evening, and thus to be informed about heaven and hell. This has been permitted that the man of the church may no longer continue in his erroneous belief about the resurrection at the time of judgment, and about the state of the soul in the meanwhile, also about angels and the devil. As this belief is a belief in what is false it involves the mind in darkness, and with those who think about these things from their own intelligence it induces doubt and at length denial, for they say in heart, “How can so vast a heaven, with so many constellations and with the sun and moon, be destroyed and dissipated; and how can the stars which are larger than the earth fall from heaven to the earth; and can bodies eaten up by worms, consumed by corruption, and scattered to all the winds, be gathered together again to their souls; and where in the meantime is the soul, and what is it when deprived of the senses it had in the body?”


[3] And they say many other like things, which being incomprehensible cannot be believed, and which destroy the belief of many in the life of the soul after death, and their belief in heaven and hell, and with these other matters pertaining to the faith of the church. That this belief has been destroyed is evident from its being said, “Who has ever come to us from heaven and told us that there is a heaven? What is hell? Is there any? What is this about man’s being tormented with fire to eternity? What is the day of judgment? Has it not been expected in vain for ages?” with other things that involve a denial of everything.


[4] Therefore lest those who think in this way—as many do who from their worldly wisdom are regarded as erudite and learned— should any longer confound and mislead the simple in faith and heart, and induce infernal darkness respecting God and heaven and eternal life, and all else that depends on these, the interiors of my spirit have been opened by the Lord, and I have thus been permitted to talk with all after their decease with whom I was ever acquainted in the life of the body—with some for days, with some for months, and with some for a year, and also with so many others that I should not exaggerate if I should say a hundred thousand; many of whom were in heaven, and many in hell. I have also talked with some two days after their decease, and have told them that their funeral services and obsequies were then being held in preparation for their interment; to which they replied that it was well to cast aside that which had served them as a body and for bodily functions in the world; and they wished me to say that they were not dead, but were living as men the same as before, and had merely migrated from one world into the other, and were not aware of having lost anything, since they had a body and its senses just as before, also understanding and will just as before, with thoughts and affections, sensations and desires, like those they had in the world.


[5] Most of those who had recently died, when they saw themselves to be living men as before, and in a like state (for after death everyone’s state of life is at first such as it was in the world, but there is a gradual change in it either into heaven or into hell), were moved by new joy at being alive, saying that they had not believed that it would be so. But they greatly wondered that they should have lived in such ignorance and blindness about the state of their life after death; and especially that the man of the church should be in such ignorance and blindness, when above all others in the whole world he might be clearly enlightened in regard to these things.215 Then they began to see the cause of that blindness and ignorance, which is, that external things, which are things relating to the world and the body, had so occupied and filled their minds that they could not be raised into the light of heaven and look into the things of the church beyond its doctrinals; for when matters relating to the body and the world are loved, as they are at the present day, nothing but darkness flows into the mind when men go beyond those doctrines.


313. Very many of the learned from the Christian world are astonished when they find themselves after death in a body, in garments, and in houses, as in the world. And when they recall what they had thought about the life after death, the soul, spirits, and heaven and hell, they are ashamed and confess that they thought foolishly, and that the simple in faith thought much more wisely than they. When the minds of learned men who had confirmed themselves in such ideas and had ascribed all things to nature were examined, it was found that their interiors were wholly closed up and their exteriors were opened, that they looked toward the world and thus toward hell and not toward heaven. For to the extent that man’s interiors are opened he looks toward heaven, but to the extent that his interiors are closed and his exteriors opened he looks toward hell, because the interiors of man are formed for the reception of all things of heaven, but the exteriors for the reception of all things of the world; and those who receive the world, and not heaven also, receive hell.216


314. That heaven is from the human race can be seen also from the fact that angelic minds and human minds are alike, both enjoying the ability to understand, perceive and will, and both formed to receive heaven; for the human mind is just as capable of becoming wise as the angelic mind; and if it does not attain to such wisdom in the world it is because it is in an earthly body, and in that body its spiritual mind thinks naturally. But it is otherwise when the mind is loosed from the bonds of that body; then it no longer thinks naturally, but spiritually, and when it thinks spiritually its thoughts are incomprehensible and ineffable to the natural man; thus it becomes wise like an angel, all of which shows that the internal part of man, called his spirit, is in its essence an angel (see above, n. 57);217 and when loosed from the earthly body is, equally with the angel, in the human form. (That an angel is in a complete human form may be seen above, n. 73-77.) When, however, the internal of man is not open above but only beneath, it is still, after it has been loosed from the body, in a human form, but a horrible and diabolical form, for it is able only to look downwards toward hell, and not upwards toward heaven.


315. Moreover, anyone who has been taught about Divine order can understand that man was created to become an angel, because the outmost of order is in him (n. 304), in which what pertains to heavenly and angelic wisdom can be brought into form and can be renewed and multiplied. Divine order never stops midway to form there a something apart from an outmost, for it is not in its fullness and completion there; but it goes on to the outmost; and when it is in its outmost it takes on its form, and by means there collected it renews itself and produces itself further, which is accomplished through procreations. Therefore the seed-ground of heaven is in the outmost.


316. The Lord rose again not as to his spirit alone but also as to his body, because when he was in the world he glorified his whole human, that is, made it Divine; for his soul which he had from the Father was of itself the very Divine, while his body became a likeness of the soul, that is, of the Father, thus also Divine. This is why he, differently from any man, rose again as to both;218 and this he made manifest to the disciples (who when they saw him believed that they saw a spirit), by saying:


See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; handle Me and see, for a spirit hath not flesh and bones as ye behold Me having (Luke 24:36-39).


He indicated thereby that he was a man both in respect to his spirit and in respect to his body.


317. That it might be made clear that man lives after death and enters in accordance with his life in the world either into heaven or into hell, many things have been disclosed to me about the state of man after death, which will be presented in due order in the following pages, where the world of spirits is treated of.






The Heathen, or Peoples outside of the Church, in Heaven



318. There is a general opinion that those born outside of the church, who are called the nations, or heathen, cannot be saved, because not having the Word they know nothing about the Lord, and apart from the Lord there is no salvation. But that these also are saved this alone makes certain, that the mercy of the Lord is universal, that is, extends to every individual; that these equally with those within the church, who are few in comparison, are born men, and that their ignorance of the Lord is not their fault. Anyone who thinks from any enlightened reason can see that no man is born for hell, for the Lord is love itself and his love is to will the salvation of all. Therefore he has provided a religion for everyone, and by it acknowledgment of the Divine and interior life; for to live in accordance with one’s religion is to live interiorly, since one then looks to the Divine, and so far as he looks to the Divine he does not look to the world but separates himself from the world, that is, from the life of the world, which is exterior life.219


319. That the heathen equally with Christians are saved anyone can see who knows what it is that makes heaven in man; for heaven is within man, and those that have heaven within them come into heaven. Heaven with man is acknowledging the Divine and being led by the Divine. The first and chief thing of every religion is to acknowledge the Divine. A religion that does not acknowledge the Divine is no religion. The precepts of every religion look to worship; thus to the way in which the Divine is to be worshiped that the worship may be acceptable to him; and when this has been settled in one’s mind, that is, so far as one wills this or so far as he loves it, he is led by the Lord. Everyone knows that the heathen as well as Christians live a moral life, and many of them a better life than Christians. Moral life may be lived either out of regard to the Divine or out of regard to men in the world; and a moral life that is lived out of regard to the Divine is a spiritual life. In outward form the two appear alike, but in inward form they are wholly different; the one saves man, the other does not. For he who lives a moral life out of regard to the Divine is led by the Divine; while he who leads a moral life out of regard to men in the world is led by himself.


[2] But this may be illustrated by an example. He that refrains from doing evil to his neighbor because it is antagonistic to religion, that is, antagonistic to the Divine, refrains from doing evil from a spiritual motive; but he that refrains from doing evil to another merely from fear of the law, or the loss of reputation, of honor, or gain, that is, from regard to self and the world, refrains from doing evil from a natural motive, and is led by himself. The life of the latter is natural, that of the former is spiritual. A man whose moral life is spiritual has heaven within him; but he whose moral life is merely natural does not have heaven within him; and for the reason that heaven flows in from above and opens man’s interiors, and through his interiors flows into his exteriors; while the world flows in from beneath and opens the exteriors but not the interiors. For there can be no flowing in from the natural world into the spiritual, but only from the spiritual world into the natural; therefore if heaven is not also received, the interiors remain closed. All this makes clear who those are that receive heaven within them, and who do not.


[3] And yet heaven is not the same in one as in another. It differs in each one in accordance with his affection for good and its truth. Those that are in an affection for good out of regard to the Divine, love Divine truth, since good and truth love each other and desire to be conjoined.220 This explains why the heathen, although they are not in genuine truths in the world, yet because of their love receive truths in the other life.


320. A certain spirit from among the heathen who had lived in the world in good of charity in accordance with his religion, hearing Christian spirits reasoning about what must be believed (for spirits reason with each other far more thoroughly and acutely than men, especially about what is good and true), wondered at such contentions, and said that he did not care to listen to them, for they reasoned from appearances and fallacies; and he gave them this instruction: “If I am good I can know from the good itself what is true; and what I do not know I can receive.”


321. I have been taught in many ways that the heathen who have led a moral life and have lived in obedience and subordination and mutual charity in accordance with their religion, and have thus received something of conscience, are accepted in the other life, and are there instructed with solicitous care by the angels in the goods and truths of faith; and that when they are being taught they behave themselves modestly, intelligently, and wisely, and readily accept truths and adopt them. They have not worked out for themselves any principles of falsity antagonistic to the truths of faith that will need to be shaken off, still less cavils against the Lord, as many Christians have who cherish no other idea of him than that he is an ordinary man. The heathen on the contrary when they hear that God has become a Man, and has thus manifested himself in the world, immediately acknowledge it and worship the Lord, saying that because God is the God of heaven and of earth, and because the human race is his, he has fully disclosed himself to men.221 It is a Divine truth that apart from the Lord there is no salvation; but this is to be understood to mean that there is no salvation except from the Lord. There are many earths in the universe, and all of them full of inhabitants, scarcely any of whom know that the Lord took on the human on our earth. Yet because they worship the Divine under a human form they are accepted and led by the Lord. On this subject more may be seen in the little work Earths in the Universe.


322. Among the heathen, as among Christians, there are both wise and simple. That I might learn about them I have been permitted to speak with both, sometimes for hours and days. But there are no such wise men now as in ancient times, especially in the ancient church, which extended over a large part of the Asiatic world, and from which religion spread to many nations. That I might wholly know about them I have been permitted to have familiar conversation with some of these wise men. There was with me one who was among the wiser of his time, and consequently well known in the learned world, with whom I talked on various subjects, and had reason to believe that it was Cicero. Knowing that he was a wise man I talked with him about wisdom, intelligence, order, and the Word, and lastly about the Lord.


[2] Of wisdom he said that there is no other wisdom than the wisdom of life, and that wisdom can be predicated of nothing else; of intelligence that it is from wisdom; of order, that it is from the Supreme God, and that to live in that order is to be wise and intelligent. As to the Word, when I read to him something from the prophets he was greatly delighted, especially with this, that every name and every word signified interior things; and he wondered greatly that learned men at this day are not delighted with such study. I saw plainly that the interiors of his thought or mind had been opened. He said that he was unable to hear more, as he perceived something more holy than he could bear, being affected so interiorly.


[3] At length I spoke with him about the Lord, saying that while he was born a man he was conceived of God, and that he put off the maternal human and put on the Divine human, and that it is he that governs the universe. To this he replied that he knew some things concerning the Lord, and perceived in his way that if mankind were to be saved it could not have been done otherwise. In the meantime some bad Christians infused various cavils; but to these he gave no attention, remarking that this was not strange, since in the life of the body they had imbibed unbecoming ideas on the subject, and until they got rid of these they could not admit ideas that confirmed the truth, as the ignorant can.


323. It has also been granted me to talk with others who lived in ancient times, and who were then among the more wise. At first they appeared in front at a distance, and were able then to perceive the interiors of my thoughts, thus many things fully. From one idea of thought they were able to discern the entire series and fill it with delightful things of wisdom combined with charming representations. From this they were perceived to be among the more wise, and I was told that they were some of the ancient people; and when they came nearer I read to them something from the Word, and they were delighted beyond measure. I perceived the essence of their delight and gratification, which arose chiefly from this, that all things and each thing they heard from the Word were representative and significative of heavenly and spiritual things. They said that in their time, when they lived in the world, their mode of thinking and speaking and also of writing was of this nature, and that this was their pursuit of wisdom.


324. But as regards the heathen of the present day, they are not so wise, but most of them are simple in heart. Nevertheless, those of them that have lived in mutual charity receive wisdom in the other life, and of these one or two examples may be cited. When I read the seventeenth and eighteenth chapters of Judges (about Micah, and how the sons of Dan carried away his graven image and teraphim and Levite), a heathen spirit was present who in the life of the body had worshiped a graven image. He listened attentively to the account of what was done to Micah, and his grief on account of his graven image which the Danites took away, and such grief came upon him and moved him that he scarcely knew, by reason of inward distress, what to think. Not only was this grief perceived, but also the innocence that was in all his affections. The Christian spirits that were present watched him and wondered that a worshiper of a graven image should have so great a feeling of sympathy and innocence stirred in him. Afterwards some good spirits talked with him, saying that graven images should not be worshiped, and that being a man he was capable of understanding this; that he ought, apart from a graven image, to think of God the Creator and Ruler of the whole heaven and the whole earth, and that God is the Lord. When this was said I was permitted to perceive the interior nature of his adoration, which was communicated to me; and it was much more holy than is the case of Christians. This makes clear that at the present day the heathen come into heaven with less difficulty than Christians, according to the Lord’s words in Luke:


Then shall they come from the east and the west, and from the north and the south, and shall recline in the kingdom of God. And behold, there are last who shall be first, and there are first who shall be last (Luke 13:29, 30).


For in the state in which that spirit was he could be imbued with all things of faith and receive them with interior affection; there was in him the mercy of love, and in his ignorance there was innocence; and when these are present all things of faith are received as it were spontaneously and with joy. He was afterwards received among angels.


325. A choir at a distance was heard one morning, and from the choir’s representations I was permitted to know that they were Chinese, for they exhibited a kind of woolly goat, then a cake of millet, and an ivory spoon, also the idea of a floating city. They desired to come nearer to me, and when they had joined me they said that they wished to be alone with me, that they might disclose their thoughts. But they were told that they were not alone, and that some were displeased at their wishing to be alone, although they were guests. When they perceived this displeasure they began to think whether they had transgressed against the neighbor, and whether they had claimed anything to themselves that belonged to others. All thought in the other life being communicated, I was permitted to perceive the agitation of their minds. It consisted of a recognition that possibly they had injured those who were displeased, of shame on that account, together with other worthy affections; and it was thus known that they were endowed with charity. Soon after I spoke with them, and at last about the Lord. When I called him “Christ” I perceived a certain repugnance in them; but the reason was disclosed, namely, that they had brought this from the world, from their having learned that Christians lived worse lives than they did, and were destitute of charity. But when I called him simply “Lord” they were interiorly moved. Afterwards, they were taught by the angels that the Christian doctrine beyond every other in the world prescribes love and charity, but that there are few who live in accordance with it. There are heathen who have come to know while they lived in the world, both from conversation and report, that Christians lead bad lives, are addicted to adultery, hatred, quarreling, drunkenness, and the like, which they themselves abhor because such things are contrary to their religion. These in the other life are more timid than others about accepting the truths of faith; but they are taught by the angels that the Christian doctrine, as well as the faith itself, teaches a very different life, but that the lives of Christians are less in accord with their doctrine than the lives of heathen. When they recognize this they receive the truths of faith, and adore the Lord, but less readily than others.


326. It is a common thing for heathen that have worshiped any god under an image or statue, or any graven thing, to be introduced, when they come into the other life, to certain spirits in place of their gods or idols, in order that they may rid themselves of their fantasies. When they have been with these for some days, the fantasies are put away. Also those that have worshiped men are sometimes introduced to the men they have worshiped, or to others in their place—as many of the Jews to Abraham, Jacob, Moses, and David—but when they come to see that they are human the same as others, and that they can give them no help, they become ashamed, and are carried to their own places in accordance with their lives. Among the heathen in heaven the Africans are most beloved, for they receive the goods and truths of heaven more readily than others. They especially wish to be called obedient, but not faithful. They say that as Christians possess the doctrine of faith they may be called faithful; but not they unless they accept that doctrine, or as they say, have the ability to accept it.


327. I have talked with some who were in the ancient church. That is called the ancient church that was established after the deluge, and extended through many kingdoms, namely, Assyria, Mesopotamia, Syria, Ethiopia, Arabia, Libya, Egypt, Philistia as far as Tyre and Sidon, and through the land of Canaan on both sides of the Jordan.222 The men of this church knew about the Lord that he was to come, and were imbued with the goods of faith, and yet they fell away and became idolaters. These spirits were in front toward the left, in a dark place and in a miserable state. Their speech was like the sound of a pipe of one tone, almost without rational thought.


They said they had been there for many centuries, and that they are sometimes taken out that they may serve others for certain uses of a low order. From this I was led to think about many Christians—who are inwardly though not outwardly idolaters, since they are worshipers of self and of the world, and in heart deny the Lord—what lot awaits such in the other life.


328. That the church of the Lord is spread over all the globe, and is thus universal; and that all those are in it who have lived in the good of charity in accordance with their religion; and that the church, where the Word is and by means of it the Lord is known, is in relation to those who are out of the church like the heart and lungs in man, from which all the viscera and members of the body have their life, variously according to their forms, positions, and conjunctions, may be seen above (n. 308).






Little Children in Heaven



329. It is a belief of some that only such children as are born within the church go to heaven, and that those born out of the church do not, and for the reason that the children within the church are baptized and by baptism are initiated into faith of the church. Such are not aware that no one receives heaven or faith through baptism; for baptism is merely for a sign and memorial that man should be regenerated, and that those born within the church can be regenerated because the Word is there, and in the Word are the Divine truths by means of which regeneration is effected, and there the Lord who regenerates is known.223 Let them know therefore that every child, wherever he is born, whether within the church or outside of it, whether of pious parents or impious, is received when he dies by the Lord and trained up in heaven, and taught in accordance with Divine order, and imbued with affections for what is good, and through these with knowledges of what is true; and afterwards as he is perfected in intelligence and wisdom is introduced into heaven and becomes an angel.


Everyone who thinks from reason can be sure that all are born for heaven and no one for hell, and if man comes into hell he himself is culpable; but little children cannot be held culpable.


330. When children die they are still children in the other life, having a like infantile mind, a like innocence in ignorance, and a like tenderness in all things. They are merely in the rudiments of a capacity to become angels, for children are not angels but become angels. For everyone passing out of this world enters the other in the same state of life, a little child in the state of a little child, a boy in the state of a boy, a youth, a man, an old man, in the state of a youth, a man, or an old man; but subsequently each one’s state is changed. The state of little children surpasses the state of all others in that they are in innocence, and evil has not yet been rooted in them by actual life; and in innocence all things of heaven can be implanted, for it is a receptacle of the truth of faith and of the good of love.


331. The state of children in the other life far surpasses their state in the world, for they are not clothed with an earthly body, but with such a body as the angels have. The earthly body is in itself gross, and receives its first sensations and first motions not from the inner or spiritual world, but from the outer or natural world; and in consequence in this world children must be taught to walk, to guide their motions, and to speak; and even their senses, as seeing and hearing, must be opened by use. It is not so with children in the other life. As they are spirits they act at once in accordance with their interiors, walking without practice, and also talking, but at first from general affections not yet distinguished into ideas of thought; but they are quickly initiated into these also, for the reason that their exteriors are homogeneous with their interiors. The speech of angels (as may be seen above, n. 234-245) so flows forth from affection modified by ideas of thought that their speech completely conforms to their thoughts from affection.


332. As soon as little children are resuscitated, which takes place immediately after death, they are taken into heaven and confided to angel women who in the life of the body tenderly loved little children and at the same time loved God. Because these during their life in the world loved all children with a kind of motherly tenderness, they receive them as their own; while the children, from an implanted instinct, love them as their own mothers. There are as many children in each one’s care as she desires from a spiritual parental affection. This heaven appears in front before the forehead, directly in the line or radius in which the angels look to the Lord. It is so situated because all little children are under the immediate auspices of the Lord; and the heaven of innocence, which is the third heaven, flows into them.


333. Little children have various dispositions, some that of the spiritual angels and some that of the celestial angels. Those who are of a celestial disposition are seen in that heaven to the right, and those of a spiritual disposition to the left. All children in the Greatest Man, which is heaven, are in the province of the eyes—those of a spiritual disposition in the province of the left eye, and those of a celestial disposition in the province of the right eye. This is because the angels who are in the spiritual kingdom see the Lord before the left eye, and those who are in the celestial kingdom before the right eye (see above, n. 118). This fact that in the greatest man or heaven children are in the province of the eyes is a proof that they are under the immediate sight and auspices of the Lord.


334. How children are taught in heaven shall also be briefly told. From their nurses they learn to talk. Their earliest speech is simply a sound of affection; this by degrees becomes more distinct as ideas of thought enter; for ideas of thought from affections constitute all angelic speech (as may be seen in its own chapter, n. 234-245). Into their affections, all of which proceed from innocence, such things as appear before their eyes and cause delight are first instilled; and as these things are from a spiritual origin the things of heaven at once flow into them, and by means of these heavenly things their interiors are opened, and they are thereby daily perfected. But when this first age is completed they are transferred to another heaven, where they are taught by masters; and so on.


335. Children are taught chiefly by representatives suited to their capacity. These are beautiful and full of wisdom from within, beyond all belief. In this way an intelligence that derives its soul from good is gradually instilled into them. I will here describe two representatives that I have been permitted to see, from which the nature of others may be inferred. First there was a representation of the Lord’s rising from the sepulcher, and at the same time of the uniting of his human with the Divine. This was done in a manner so wise as to surpass all human wisdom, and at the same time in an innocent infantile manner. An idea of a sepulcher was presented, and with it an idea of the Lord, but in so remote a way that there was scarcely any perception of its being the Lord, except seemingly afar off; and for the reason that in the idea of a sepulcher there is something funereal, and this was thus removed; afterwards they cautiously admitted into the sepulcher something atmospheric, with an appearance of thin vapor, by which with proper remoteness they signified spiritual life in baptism. Afterwards I saw a representation by the angels of the Lord’s descent to those that are “bound,” and of his ascent with these into heaven, and this with incomparable prudence and gentleness. In adaptation to the infantile mind they let down little cords almost invisible, very soft and tender, by which they lightened the Lord’s ascent, always with a holy solicitude that there should be nothing in the representation bordering upon anything that did not contain what is spiritual and heavenly. Other representations are there given, whereby, as by plays adapted to the minds of children, they are guided into knowledges of truth and affections for good.


336. It was also shown how tender their understanding is. When I was praying the Lord’s Prayer, and from their understanding they flowed into the ideas of my thought, their influx was perceived to be so tender and soft as to be almost solely a matter of affection; and at the same time it was observed that their understanding was open even from the Lord, for what flowed forth from them was as if it simply flowed through them. Moreover, the Lord flows into the ideas of little children chiefly from inmosts, for there is nothing, as with adults, to close up their ideas, no principles of falsity to close the way to the understanding of truth, nor any life of evil to close the way to the reception of good, and thereby to the reception of wisdom. All this makes clear that little children do not come at once after death into an angelic state, but are gradually brought into it by means of knowledges of good and truth, and in harmony with all heavenly order; for the least particulars of their nature are known to the Lord, and thus they are led, in accord with each and every movement of their inclination, to receive the truths of good and the goods of truth.


337. I have also been shown how all things are instilled into them by delightful and pleasant means suited to their genius. I have been permitted to see children most charmingly attired, having garlands of flowers resplendent with most beautiful and heavenly colors twined about their breasts and around their tender arms; and once to see them accompanied by those in charge of them and by maidens, in a park most beautifully adorned, not so much with trees, as with arbors and covered walks of laurel, with paths leading inward; and when the children entered attired as they were the flowers over the entrance shone forth most joyously. This indicates the nature of their delights, also how they are led by means of pleasant and delightful things into the goods of innocence and charity, which goods the Lord continually instilled into these delights and pleasures.


338. It was shown me, by a mode of communication common in the other life, what the ideas of children are when they see objects of any kind. Each and every object seemed to them to be alive; and thus in every least idea of their thought there is life. And it was perceived that children on the earth have nearly the same ideas when they are at their little plays; for as yet they have no such reflection as adults have about what is inanimate.


339. It has been said above that children are of a genius either celestial or spiritual. Those of a celestial genius are easily distinguished from those of a spiritual genius. Their thought, speech, and action, is so gentle that hardly anything appears except what flows from a love of good to the Lord and from a love for other children. But those of a spiritual genius are not so gentle; but in everything with them there appears a sort of vibration, as of wings. The difference is seen also in their ill-feeling and in other things.


340. Many may suppose that in heaven little children remain little children, and continue as such among the angels. Those who do not know what an angel is may have had this opinion confirmed by paintings and images in churches, in which angels are represented as children. But it is wholly otherwise. Intelligence and wisdom are what constitute an angel, and as long as children do not possess these they are not angels, although they are with the angels; but as soon as they become intelligent and wise they become angels; and what is wonderful, they do not then appear as children, but as adults, for they are no longer of an infantile genius, but of a more mature angelic genius. Intelligence and wisdom produce this effect. The reason why children appear more mature, thus as youths and young men, as they are perfected in intelligence and wisdom, is that intelligence and wisdom are essential spiritual nourishment;224 and thus the things that nourish their minds also nourish their bodies, and this from correspondence; for the form of the body is simply the external form of the interiors. But it should be understood that in heaven children advance in age only to early manhood, and remain in this to eternity. That I might be assured that this is so I have been permitted to talk with some who had been educated as children in heaven, and had grown up there; with some also while they were children, and again with the same when they had become young men; and I have heard from them about the progress of their life from one age to another.


341. That innocence is a receptacle of all things of heaven, and thus the innocence of children is a plane for all affections for good and truth, can be seen from what has been shown above (n. 276-283) in regard to the innocence of angels in heaven, namely, that innocence is a willingness to be led by the Lord and not by oneself; consequently so far as a man is in innocence he is separated from what is his own, and so far as one is separated from what is his own he is in what is the Lord’s own. The Lord’s own is what is called his righteousness and merit. But the innocence of children is not genuine innocence, because as yet it is without wisdom. Genuine innocence is wisdom, since so far as anyone is wise he loves to be led by the Lord; or what is the same, so far as anyone is led by the Lord he is wise.


[2] Therefore children are led from the external innocence in which they are at the beginning, and which is called the innocence of childhood, to internal innocence, which is the innocence of wisdom. This innocence is the end that directs all their instruction and progress; and therefore when they have attained to the innocence of wisdom, the innocence of childhood, which in the meanwhile has served them as a plane, is joined to them.


[3] The innocence of children has been represented to me as a wooden sort of thing, almost devoid of life, which becomes vivified as they are perfected by knowledges of truth and affections for good. Afterwards genuine innocence was represented by a most beautiful child, naked and full of life; for the really innocent, who are in the inmost heaven and thus nearest to the Lord, always appear before the eyes of other angels as little children, and some of them naked; for innocence is represented by nakedness unaccompanied by shame, as is said of the first man and his wife in Paradise (Gen. 2:25); so when their state of innocence perished they were ashamed of their nakedness, and hid themselves (Gen. 3:7, 10, 11). In a word, the wiser the angels are the more innocent they are, and the more innocent they are the more they appear to themselves as little children. This is why in the Word “childhood” signifies innocence (see above, n. 278).


342. I have talked with angels about little children, whether they are free from evils, inasmuch as they have no actual evil as adults have; and I was told that they are equally in evil, and in fact are nothing but evil;225 but, like all angels, they are so withheld from evil and held in good by the Lord as to seem to themselves to be in good from themselves. For this reason when children have become adults in heaven, that they may not have the false idea about themselves that the good in them is from themselves and not from the Lord, they are now and then let down into their evils, which they inherited, and are left in them until they know, acknowledge and believe the truth of the matter.


[2] There was one, the son of a king, who died in childhood and grew up in heaven, who held this opinion. Therefore he was let down into that life of evils into which he was born, and he then perceived from the sphere of his life that he had a disposition to domineer over others, and regarded adulteries as of no account; these evils he had inherited from his parents; but after he had been brought to recognize his real character he was again received among the angels with whom he had before been associated.


[3] In the other life no one ever suffers punishment on account of his inherited evil, because it is not his evil, that is, it is not his fault that he is such; he suffers only on account of actual evil that is his, that is, only so far as he has appropriated to himself inherited evil by actual life. When, therefore, the children that have become adults are let down into the state of their inherited evil it is not that they may suffer punishment for it, but that they may learn that of themselves they are nothing but evil, and that it is by the mercy of the Lord that they are taken up into heaven from the hell in which they are, and that it is from the Lord that they are in heaven and not from any merit of their own; and therefore they may not boast before others of the good that is in them, since this is contrary to the good of mutual love, as it is contrary to the truth of faith.


343. Several times when a number of children that were in a purely infantile state have been with me in choirs, they were heard as a tender unarranged mass, that is, as not yet acting as one, as they do later when they have become more mature. To my surprise the spirits with me could not refrain from inducing them to talk. This desire is innate in spirits. But I noticed, each time, that the children resisted, unwilling to talk in this way. This refusal and resistance, which were accompanied by a kind of indignation, I have often perceived; and when an opportunity to talk was given them they would say nothing except that “It is not so.” I have been taught that little children are so tempted in order that they may get accustomed to resisting, and may begin to resist falsity and evil, and also that they may learn not to think, speak, and act from another, and in consequence may learn to permit themselves to be led by no one but the Lord.


344. From what has been said it can be seen what child education is in heaven, namely, that it is leading them by means of an understanding of truth and the wisdom of good into the angelic life, which is love to the Lord and mutual love, in which is innocence. But how different in many cases is the education of children on the earth can be seen from this example. I was in the street of a large city, and saw little boys fighting with each other; a crowd flocked around and looked on with much pleasure; and I was told that little boys are incited to such fights by their own parents. Good spirits and angels who saw this through my eyes so revolted at it that I felt their horror; and especially that parents should incite their children to such things, saying that in this way parents extinguish in the earliest age all the mutual love and all the innocence that children have from the Lord, and initiate them into the spirit of hatred and revenge; consequently by their own endeavors they shut their children out of heaven, where there is nothing but mutual love. Let parents therefore who wish well to their children beware of such things.


345. What the difference is between those who die in childhood and those who die in mature life shall also be told. Those dying in mature life have a plane acquired from the earthly and material world, and this they carry with them. This plane is their memory and its bodily natural affection. This remains fixed and becomes quiescent, but still serves their thought after death as an outmost plane, since the thought flows into it. Consequently such as this plane is, and such as the correspondence is between the things that are in it and the rational faculty, such is the man after death. But the children who die in childhood and are educated in heaven have no such plane, since they derive nothing from the material world and the earthly body; but they have a spiritual-natural plane. For this reason they cannot be in such gross affections and consequent thoughts, since they derive all things from heaven. Moreover, these children do not know that they were born in the world, but believe that they were born in heaven. Neither do they know about any other than spiritual birth, which is effected through knowledges of good and truth and through intelligence and wisdom, from which man is a man; and as these are from the Lord they believe themselves to be the Lord’s own, and love to be so. Nevertheless it is possible for the state of men who grow up on the earth to become as perfect as the state of children who grow up in heaven, provided they put away bodily and earthly loves, which are the loves of self and the world, and receive in their place spiritual loves.






The Wise and the Simple in Heaven



346. It is believed that in heaven the wise will have more glory and eminence than the simple, because it is said in Daniel:


They that are intelligent shall shine as with the brightness of the firmament, and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever (Dan. 12:3).


But few know who are meant by the “intelligent” and by those that “turn many to righteousness.” The common belief is that they are such as are called the accomplished and learned, especially such as have taught in the church and have surpassed others in acquirements and in preaching, and still more such among them as have converted many to the faith. In the world all such are regarded as the intelligent; nevertheless such are not the intelligent in heaven that are spoken of in these words, unless their intelligence is heavenly intelligence. What this is will now be told.


347. Heavenly intelligence is interior intelligence, arising from a love for truth, not with any glory in the world nor any glory in heaven as an end, but with the truth itself as an end, by which they are inmostly affected and with which they are inmostly delighted. Those who are affected by and delighted with the truth itself are affected by and delighted with the light of heaven; and those who are affected by and delighted with the light of heaven are also affected by and delighted with Divine truth, and indeed with the Lord himself; for the light of heaven is Divine truth, and Divine truth is the Lord in heaven (see above, n. 126-140). This light enters only into the interiors of the mind; for the interiors of the mind are formed for the reception of that light, and are affected by and delighted with that light as it enters; for whatever flows in and is received from heaven has in it what is delightful and pleasant. From this comes a genuine affection for truth, which is an affection for truth for truth’s sake. Those who are in this affection, or what is the same thing, in this love, are in heavenly intelligence, and “shine in heaven as with the brightness of the firmament.” They so shine because Divine truth, wherever it is in heaven, is what gives light (see above, n. 132); and the “firmament” of heaven signifies from correspondence the intellectual faculty, both with angels and men, that is in the light of heaven.


[2] But those that love the truth, either with glory in the world or glory in heaven as an end, cannot shine in heaven, since they are delighted with and affected by the light of the world, and not with the very light of heaven; and the light of the world without the light of heaven is in heaven mere thick darkness.226 For the glory of self is what rules, because it is the end in view; and when that glory is the end man puts himself in the first place, and such truths as can be made serviceable to his glory he looks upon simply as means to the end and as instruments of service. For he that loves Divine truths for the sake of his own glory regards himself and not the Lord in Divine truths, thereby turning the sight pertaining to his understanding and faith away from heaven to the world, and away from the Lord to himself. Such, therefore, are in the light of the world and not in the light of heaven.


[3] In outward form or in the sight of men they appear just as intelligent and learned as those who are in the light of heaven, because they speak in a like manner; and sometimes to outward appearance they even appear wiser, because they are moved by love of self, and are skilled in counterfeiting heavenly affections; but in their inward form in which they appear before the angels they are wholly different. All this shows in some degree who those are that are meant by “the intelligent that will shine in heaven as with the brightness of the firmament.” Who are meant by those that “turn many to righteousness,” who will shine as the stars, shall now be told.


348. By those who “turn many to righteousness” are meant those who are wise, and in heaven those are called wise who are in good, and those are in good that apply Divine truths at once to the life; for as soon as Divine truth comes to be of the life it becomes good, since it comes to be of will and love, and whatever is of will and love is called good; therefore such are called wise because wisdom is of the life. But those that do not commit Divine truths at once to the life, but first to the memory, from which they afterwards draw them and apply them to the life, are called the “intelligent.” What and how great the difference is between the wise and the intelligent in the heavens can be seen in the chapter that treats of the two kingdoms of heaven, the celestial and the spiritual (n. 20-28), and in the chapter that treats of the three heavens (n. 29-40). Those who are in the Lord’s celestial kingdom, and consequently in the third or inmost heaven, are called “the righteous” because they attribute all righteousness to the Lord and none to themselves. The Lord’s righteousness in heaven is the good that is from the Lord.227 Such, then, are here meant by those that “turn to righteousness”; and such are meant also in the Lord’s words,


The righteous shall shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father (Matt. 13:43).


Such “shine forth as the sun” because they are in love to the Lord from the Lord, and that love is meant by the “sun” (see above, n. 116-125). The light of such is flame colored; and the ideas of their thought are so tinged with what is flaming because they receive the good of love directly from the Lord as the sun in heaven.


349. All who have acquired intelligence and wisdom in the world are received in heaven and become angels, each in accordance with the quality and degree of his intelligence and wisdom. For whatever a man acquires in the world abides, and he takes it with him after death; and it is further increased and filled out, but within and not beyond the degree of his affection and desire for truth and its good, those with but little affection and desire receiving but little, and yet as much as they are capable of receiving within that degree; while those with much affection and desire receive much. The degree itself of affection and desire is like a measure that is filled to the full, he that has a large measure receiving more, and he that has a small measure receiving less. This is so because man’s love, to which affection and desire belong, receives all that accords with itself; consequently reception is measured by the love. This is what is meant by the Lord’s words,


To him that hath it shall be given, that he may have more abundantly (Matt. 13:12; 25:29).


Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, shall be given into your bosom (Luke 6:38).


350. All are received into heaven who have loved truth and good for the sake of truth and good; therefore those that have loved much are called the wise, and those that have loved little are called the simple. The wise in heaven are in much light, the simple in less light, everyone in accordance with the degree of his love for good and truth. To love truth and good for the sake of truth and good is to will and do them; for those love who will and do, while those who do not will and do, do not love. Such also love the Lord and are loved by the Lord, because good and truth are from the Lord. And inasmuch as good and truth are from the Lord the Lord is in good and truth; and he is in those who receive good and truth in their life by willing and doing. Moreover, when man is viewed in himself he is nothing but his own good and truth, because good is of his will and truth of his understanding, and man is such as his will and understanding are. Evidently, then, man is loved by the Lord just to the extent that his will is formed from good and his understanding from truth. Also to be loved by the Lord is to love the Lord, since love is reciprocal; for upon him who is loved the Lord bestows ability to love.


351. It is believed in the world that those who have much knowledge, whether it be knowledge of the teachings of the church and the Word or of the sciences, have a more interior and keen vision of truth than others, that is, are more intelligent and wise; and such have this opinion of themselves. But what true intelligence and wisdom are, and what spurious and false intelligence and wisdom are, shall be told in what now follows.


[2] True intelligence and wisdom is seeing and perceiving what is true and good, and thereby what is false and evil, and clearly distinguishing between them, and this from an interior intuition and perception. With every man there are interior faculties and exterior faculties; interior faculties belonging to the internal or spiritual man, and exterior faculties belonging to the exterior or natural man. Accordingly as man’s interiors are formed and made one with his exteriors man sees and perceives. His interiors can be formed only in heaven, his exteriors are formed in the world. When his interiors have been formed in heaven the things they contain flow into his exteriors which are from the world, and so form them that they correspond with, that is, act as one with, his interiors; and when this is done man sees and perceives from what is interior. The interiors can be formed only in one way, namely, by man’s looking to the Divine and to heaven, since, as has been said, the interiors are formed in heaven; and man looks to the Divine when he believes in the Divine, and believes that all truth and good and consequently all intelligence and wisdom are from the Divine; and man believes in the Divine when he is willing to be led by the Divine. In this way and none other are the interiors of man opened.


[3] The man who is in that belief and in a life that is in accordance with his belief has the ability and capacity to understand and be wise; but to become intelligent and wise he must learn many things, both things pertaining to heaven and things pertaining to the world—things pertaining to heaven from the Word and from the church, and things pertaining to the world from the sciences. To the extent that man learns and applies to life he becomes intelligent and wise, for to that extent the interior sight belonging to his understanding and the interior affection belonging to his will are perfected. The simple of this class are those whose interiors have been opened, but not so enriched by spiritual, moral, civil and natural truths. Such perceive truths when they hear them, but do not see them in themselves. But the wise of this class are those whose interiors have been both opened and enriched. Such both see truths inwardly and perceive them. All this makes clear what true intelligence is and what true wisdom is.


352. Spurious intelligence and wisdom is failing to see and perceive from within what is true and what is good, and thereby what is false and what is evil, but merely believing that to be true and good and that to be false and evil which is said by others to be so, and then confirming it. Because such see truth from someone else, and not from the truth itself, they can seize upon and believe what is false as readily as what is true, and can confirm it until it appears true; for whatever is confirmed puts on the appearance of truth; and there is nothing that cannot be confirmed. The interiors of such are opened only from beneath; but their exteriors are opened to the extent that they have confirmed themselves. For this reason the light from which they see is not the light of heaven but the light of the world, which is called natural light [lumen]; and in that light falsities can shine like truths; and when confirmed they can even appear resplendent, but not in the light of heaven. Of this class those are less intelligent and wise who have strongly confirmed themselves, and those are more intelligent and wise who have less strongly confirmed themselves. All this shows what spurious intelligence and wisdom are.


[2] But those are not included in this class who in childhood supposed what they heard from their masters to be true, if in a riper age, when they think from their own understanding, they do not continue to hold fast to it, but long for truth, and from that longing seek for it, and when they find it are interiorly moved by it. Because such are moved by the truth for the truth’s sake they see the truth before they confirm it.228


[3] This may be illustrated by an example. There was a discussion among spirits why animals are born into all the knowledge suited to their nature, but man is not; and the reason was said to be that animals are in the order of their life, and man is not, consequently man must needs be led into order by means of what he learns of internal and external things. But if man were born into the order of his life, which is to love God above all things and his neighbor as himself, he would be born into intelligence and wisdom, and as knowledges are acquired would come into a belief in all truth. Good spirits saw this at once and perceived it to be true, and this merely from the light of truth; while the spirits who had confirmed themselves in faith alone, and had thereby set aside love and charity, were unable to understand it, because the light of falsity which they had confirmed had made obscure to them the light of truth.


353. False intelligence and wisdom is all intelligence and wisdom that is separated from the acknowledgment of the Divine; for all such as do not acknowledge the Divine, but acknowledge nature in the place of the Divine, think from the bodily-sensual, and are merely sensual, however highly they may be esteemed in the world for their accomplishments and learning.229 For their learning does not ascend beyond such things as appear before their eyes in the world; these they hold in the memory and look at them in an almost material way, although the same knowledges serve the truly intelligent in forming their under standing. By sciences the various kinds of experimental knowledge are meant, such as physics, astronomy, chemistry, mechanics, geometry, anatomy, psychology, philosophy, the history of kingdoms and of the literary world, criticism, and languages.


[2] The clergy who deny the Divine do not raise their thoughts above the sensual things of the external man; and regard the things of the Word in the same way as others regard the sciences, not making them matters of thought or of any intuition by an enlightened rational mind; and for the reason that their interiors are closed up, together with those exteriors that are nearest to their interiors. These are closed up because they have turned themselves away from heaven, and have retroverted those faculties that were capable of looking heavenward, which are, as has been said above, the interiors of the human mind. For this reason they are incapable of seeing anything true or good, this being to them in thick darkness, while whatever is false and evil is in light.


[3] And yet sensual men can reason, some of them more cunningly and keenly than anyone else; but they reason from the fallacies of the senses confirmed by their knowledges; and because they are able to reason in this way they believe themselves to be wiser than others.230 The fire that kindles with affection their reasonings is the fire of the love of self and the world. Such are those who are in false intelligence and wisdom, and who are meant by the Lord in Matthew:


Seeing they see not, and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand (Matt. 13:13-15).


These things are hid from the intelligent and wise, and revealed unto babes (Matt. 11:25, 26).


354. It has been granted me to speak with many of the learned after their departure from the world; with some of distinguished reputation and celebrated in the literary world for their writings, and with some not so celebrated, although endowed with profound wisdom. Those that in heart had denied the Divine, whatever their professions may have been, had become so stupid as to have little comprehension even of anything truly civil, still less of anything spiritual. I perceived and also saw that the interiors of their minds were so closed up as to appear black (for in the spiritual world such things become visible), and in consequence they were unable to endure any heavenly light or admit any influx from heaven. This blackness which their interiors presented was more intense and extended with those that had confirmed themselves against the Divine by the knowledges they had acquired. In the other life such accept all falsity with delight, imbibing it as a sponge does water; and they repel all truth as an elastic bony substance repels what falls upon it. In fact, it is said that the interiors of those that have confirmed themselves against the Divine and in favor of nature become bony, and their heads down to the nose appear callous like ivory, which is a sign that they no longer have any perception. Those of this description are immersed in quagmires that appear like bogs; and there they are harassed by the fantasies into which their falsities are turned. Their infernal fire is a lust for glory and reputation, which prompts them to assail one another, and from an infernal ardor to torment those about them who do not worship them as deities; and this they do one to another in turns. Into such things is all the learning of the world changed that has not received into itself light from heaven through acknowledgment of the Divine.


355. That these are such in the spiritual world when they come into it after death may be inferred from this alone, that all things that are in the natural memory and are in immediate conjunction with the things of bodily sense (which is true of such knowledges as are mentioned above) then become quiescent; and only such rational principles as are drawn from these then serve for thought and speech. For man carries with him his entire natural memory, but its contents are not then under his view, and do not come into his thought as when he lived in the world. He can take nothing from that memory and bring it forth into spiritual light because its contents are not objects of that light. But those things of the reason and understanding that man has acquired from knowledges while living in the body are in accord with the light of the spiritual world; consequently so far as the spirit of man has been made rational in the world through knowledge and science it is to the same extent rational after being loosed from the body; for man is then a spirit, and it is the spirit that thinks in the body.231


356. But in respect to those that have acquired intelligence and wisdom through knowledge and science, who are such as have applied all things to the use of life, and have also acknowledged the Divine, loved the Word, and lived a spiritual moral life (of which above, n. 319), to such the sciences have served as a means of becoming wise, and also of corroborating the things pertaining to faith. The interiors of the mind of such have been perceived by me, and were seen as transparent from light of a glistening white, flamy, or blue color, like that of translucent diamonds, rubies, and sapphires; and this in accordance with confirmations in favor of the Divine and Divine truths drawn from science. Such is the appearance of true intelligence and wisdom when they are presented to view in the spiritual world. This appearance is derived from the light of heaven; and that light is Divine truth going forth from the Lord, which is the source of all intelligence and wisdom (see above, n. 126-133).


[2] The planes of that light, in which variegations like those of colors exist, are the interiors of the mind; and these variegations are produced by confirmations of Divine truths by means of such things as are in nature, that is, in the sciences.232 For the interior mind of man looks into the things of the natural memory, and the things there that will serve as proofs it sublimates as it were by the fire of heavenly love, and withdraws and purifies them even into spiritual ideas. This is unknown to man as long as he lives in the body, because there he thinks both spiritually and naturally, and he has no perception of the things he then thinks spiritually, but only of those he thinks naturally. But when he has come into the spiritual world he has no perception of what he thought naturally in the world, but only of what he thought spiritually. Thus is his state changed.


[3] All this makes clear that it is by means of knowledges and sciences that man is made spiritual, also that these are the means of becoming wise, but only with those who have acknowledged the Divine in faith and life. Such also before others are accepted in heaven, and are among those there who are at the center (n. 43), because they are in light more than others. These are the intelligent and wise in heaven, who “shine as with the brightness of the firmament” and who “shine as the stars,” while the simple there are those that have acknowledged the Divine, have loved the Word, and have lived a spiritual and moral life, but the interiors of their minds have not been so enriched by knowledges and sciences. The human mind is like soil which is such as it is made by cultivation.




Extracts from Arcana Coelestia Respecting Knowledges



Man ought to be fully instructed in knowledges and cognitions, since by means of them he learns to think, afterwards to understand what is true and good, and finally to be wise (n. 129, 1450, 1451, 1453, 1548, 1802).


Knowledges are the first things on which the life of man, civil, moral, and spiritual, is built and founded, and they are to be learned for the sake of use as an end (n. 1489, 3310).


Cognitions open the way to the internal man, and afterwards conjoin that man with the external in accordance with uses (n. 1563, 1616).


The rational faculty has its birth by means of knowledges and cognitions (n. 1895, 1900, 3086).


But not by means of cognitions themselves, but by means of affection for the uses derived from them (n. 1895).


[2] There are knowledges that give entrance to Divine truths, and knowledges that do not (n. 5213).


Empty knowledges are to be destroyed (n. 1489, 1492, 1499, 1581).


Empty knowledges are such as have the loves of self and of the world as an end, and sustain those loves, and withdraw from love to God and love toward the neighbor, because such knowledges close up the internal man, even to the extent that man becomes unable to receive anything from heaven (n. 1563, 1600).


Knowledges are means to becoming wise and means to becoming insane and by them the internal man is either opened or closed, and thus the rational is either enriched or destroyed (n. 4156, 8628, 9922).


[3] The internal man is opened and gradually perfected by means of knowledges if man has good use as an end, especially use that looks to external life (n. 3086).


Then knowledges, which are in the natural man, are met by spiritual and heavenly things from the spiritual man, and these adopt such of them as are suitable (n. 1495).


Then the uses of heavenly life are drawn forth by the Lord and perfected and raised up out of the knowledges in the natural man by means of the internal man (n. 1895, 1896, 1900-1902, 5871, 5874, 5901).


While incongruous and opposing knowledges are rejected to the sides and banished (n. 5871, 5886, 5889).


[4] The sight of the internal man calls forth from the knowledges of the external man only such things as are in accord with its love (n. 9394).


As seen by the internal man what pertains to the love is at the center and in brightness, but what is not of the love is at the sides and in obscurity (n. 6068, 6084).


Suitable knowledges are gradually implanted in man’s loves and as it were dwell in them (n. 6325).


If man were born into love toward the neighbor he would be born into intelligence, but because he is born into the loves of self and of the world he is born into total ignorance (n. 6323, 6325).


Knowledge, intelligence, and wisdom are sons of love to God and of love toward the neighbor (n. 1226, 2049, 2116).


[5] It is one thing to be wise, another thing to understand, another to know, and another to do; nevertheless, in those that possess spiritual life these follow in order, and exist together in doing or deeds (n. 10331).


Also it is one thing to know, another to acknowledge, and another to have faith (n. 896).


[6] Knowledges, which pertain to the external or natural man, are in the light of the world, but truths that have been made truths of faith and of love, and have thus acquired life, are in the light of heaven (n. 5212).


The truths that have acquired spiritual life are comprehended by means of natural ideas (n. 5510).


Spiritual influx is from the internal or spiritual man into the knowledges that are in the external or natural man (n. 1940, 8005).


Knowledges are receptacles, and as it were vessels, for the truth and good that belong to the internal man (n. 1469, 1496, 3068, 5489, 6004, 6023, 6052, 6071, 6077, 7770, 9922).


Knowledges are like mirrors in which the truths and goods of the internal man appear as an image (n. 5201).


There they are together as in their outmost (n. 5373, 5874, 5886, 5901, 6004, 6023, 6052, 6071).


[7] Influx is not physical but spiritual, that is, influx is from the internal man into the external, thus into the knowledges of the external; and not from the external into the internal, thus not from the knowledges of the external into truths of faith (n. 3219, 5119, 5259, 5427, 5428, 5478, 6322, 9110).


A beginning must be made from the truths of doctrine of the church, which are from the Word, and those truths must first be acknowledged, and then it is permissible to consult knowledges (n. 6047).


Thus it is permissible for those who are in an affirmative state in regard to truths of faith to confirm them intellectually by means of knowledges, but not for those who are in a negative state (n. 2568, 2588, 4760, 6047).


He that will not believe Divine truths until he is convinced by means of knowledges will never believe (n. 2094, 2832).


To enter from knowledge into the truths of faith is contrary to order (n. 10236).


Those who do so become demented respecting the things of heaven and the church (n. 128-130).


They fall into the falsities of evil (n. 232, 233, 6047).


In the other life when they think about spiritual matters they become as it were drunken (n. 1072).


More respecting the character of such (n. 196).


Examples showing that things spiritual cannot be comprehended when entered into through knowledges (n. 233, 2094, 2196, 2203, 2209).


In spiritual things many of the learned are more demented than the simple, for the reason that they are in a negative state, which they confirm by means of the knowledges which they have continually and in abundance before their sight (n. 4760, 8629).


[8] Those who reason from knowledges against the truths of faith reason keenly because they reason from the fallacies of the senses, which are engaging and convincing, because they cannot easily be dispelled (n. 5700).


What things are fallacies of the senses, and what they are (n. 5084, 5094, 6400, 6948).


Those that have no understanding of truth, and also those that are in evil, are able to reason about the truths and goods of faith, but are not able to understand them (n. 4214).


Intelligence does not consist in merely confirming dogma but in seeing whether it is true or not before it is confirmed (n. 4741, 6047).


[9] Knowledges are of no avail after death, but only that which man has imbibed in his understanding and life by means of knowledges (n. 2480).


Still all knowledge remains after death, although it is quiescent (n. 2476-2479, 2481-2486).


[10] Knowledges with the evil are falsities, because they are adapted to evils, but with the good the same knowledges are truths, because applied to what is good (n. 6917).


True knowledges with the evil are not true, however much they may appear to be true when uttered, because there is evil within them (n. 10331).


[11] An example of the desire to know, which spirits have (n. 1974).


Angels have an illimitable longing to know and to become wise, since learning, intelligence, and wisdom are spiritual food (n. 3114, 4459, 4792, 4976, 5147, 5293, 5340, 5342, 5410, 5426, 5576, 5582, 5588, 5655, 6277, 8562, 9003).


The knowledge of the ancients was the knowledge of correspondences and representations, by which they gained entrance into the cognition of spiritual things; but that knowledge at this day is wholly lost (n. 4749, 4844, 4964, 4965).


[12] For spiritual truths to be comprehended the following universals must be known. (1) All things in the universe have relation to good and truth and to their conjunction that they may be anything, thus to love and faith and their conjunction. (2) Man has understanding and will; and the understanding is the receptacle of truth and the will of good; and all things in man have relation to these two and to their conjunction, as all things have relation to truth and good and their conjunction. (3) There is an internal man and an external man, which are as distinct from each other as heaven and the world are, and yet for a man to be truly a man, these must make one. (4) The internal man is in the light of heaven, and the external man is in the light of the world; and the light of heaven is Divine truth itself, from which is all intelligence. (5) Between the things in the internal man and those in the external there is a correspondence, therefore the different aspect they present is such that they can be distinguished only by means of a knowledge of correspondences. Unless these and many other things are known, nothing but incongruous ideas of spiritual and heavenly truths can be conceived and formed; therefore without these universals the knowledges and cognitions of the natural man can be of but little service to the rational man for understanding and growth. This makes clear how necessary knowledges are.






The Rich and the Poor in Heaven



357. There are various opinions about reception into heaven. Some are of the opinion that the poor are received and the rich are not; some that the rich and the poor are equally received; some that the rich can be received only by giving up their wealth and becoming like the poor; and proofs are found in the Word for all of these opinions. But those who make a distinction in regard to heaven between the rich and the poor do not understand the Word. In its interiors the Word is spiritual, but in the letter it is natural; consequently those who understand the Word only in accordance with its literal sense, and not according to any spiritual sense, err in many respects, especially about the rich and the poor; for example, that it is as difficult for the rich to enter into heaven as for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle; and that it is easy for the poor because they are poor, since it is said,


Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of the heavens (Matt. 5:3; Luke 6:20, 21).


But those who know anything of the spiritual sense of the Word think otherwise; they know that heaven is for all who live a life of faith and love, whether rich or poor. But who are meant in the Word by “the rich” and who by “the poor” will be told in what follows. From much conversation and living with angels it has been granted me to know with certainty that the rich enter heaven just as easily as the poor, and that no man is shut out of heaven on account of his wealth, or received into heaven on account of his poverty. Both the rich and the poor are in heaven, and many of the rich in greater glory and happiness than the poor.


358. It should be said to begin with that a man may acquire riches and accumulate wealth as far as opportunity is given, if it is not done by craft or fraud; that he may enjoy the delicacies of food and drink if he does not place his life therein; that he may have a palatial dwelling in accord with his condition, associate with others in like condition, frequent places of amusement, talk about the affairs of the world, and need not go about like a devotee with a sad and sorrowful countenance and drooping head, but may be joyful and cheerful; nor need he give his goods to the poor except so far as affection leads him; in a word, he may live outwardly precisely like a man of the world; and all this will be no obstacle to his entering heaven, provided that inwardly in himself he thinks about God as he ought, and acts sincerely and justly in respect to his neighbor. For a man is such as his affection and thought are, or such as his love and faith are, and from these all his outward acts derive their life; since acting is willing, and speaking is thinking, acting being from the will, and speaking from the thought. So where it is said in the Word that man will be judged according to his deeds, and will be rewarded according to his works, it is meant that he will be judged and rewarded in accordance with his thought and affection, which are the source of his deeds, or which are in his deeds; for deeds are nothing apart from these, and are precisely such as these are.233


All this shows that the man’s external accomplishes nothing, but only his internal, which is the source of the external. For example: if a man acts honestly and refrains from fraud solely because he fears the laws and the loss of reputation and thereby of honor or gain, and if that fear did not restrain him would defraud others whenever he could; although such a man’s deeds outwardly appear honest, his thought and will are fraud; and because he is inwardly dishonest and fraudulent he has hell in himself. But he who acts honestly and refrains from fraud because it is against God and against the neighbor would have no wish to defraud another if he could; his thought and will are conscience, and he has heaven in himself. The deeds of these two appear alike in outward form, but inwardly they are wholly unlike.


359. Since a man can live outwardly as others do, can grow rich, keep a plentiful table, dwell in an elegant house and wear fine clothing according to his condition and function, can enjoy delights and gratifications, and engage in worldly affairs for the sake of his occupation and business and for the life both of the mind and body, provided he inwardly acknowledges the Divine and wishes well to the neighbor, it is evident that to enter upon the way to heaven is not so difficult as many believe. The sole difficulty lies in being able to resist the love of self and the world, and to prevent their becoming dominant; for this is the source of all evils.234 That this is not so difficult as is believed is meant by these words of the Lord:


Learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest to your souls; for my yoke is easy and my burden is light (Matt. 11:29, 30).


The Lord’s yoke is easy and his burden light because a man is led by the Lord and not by self just to the extent that he resists the evils that flow forth from love of self and of the world; and because the Lord then resists these evils in man and removes them.


360. I have spoken with some after death who, while they lived in the world, renounced the world and gave themselves up to an almost solitary life, so that by an abstraction of the thoughts from worldly things they might have opportunity for pious meditations, believing that thus they might enter the way to heaven. But these in the other life are of a sad disposition; they despise others who are not like themselves; they are indignant that they do not have a happier lot than others, believing that they have merited it; they have no interest in others, and turn away from the duties of charity by which there is conjunction with heaven. They desire heaven more than others; but when they are taken up among the angels they induce anxieties that disturb the happiness of the angels; and in consequence they are sent away; and when sent away they betake themselves to desert places, where they lead a life like that which they lived in the world.


[2] Man can be formed for heaven only by means of the world. In the world are the outmost effects in which everyone’s affection must be terminated; for unless affection puts itself forth or flows out into acts, which is done in association with others, it is suffocated to such a degree finally that man has no longer any regard for the neighbor, but only for himself. All this makes clear that a life of charity toward the neighbor, which is doing what is just and right in every work and in every employment, is what leads to heaven, and not a life of piety apart from charity;235 and from this it follows that only to the extent that man is engaged in the employments of life can charity be exercised and the life of charity grow; and this is impossible to the extent that man separates himself from those employments.


[3] On this subject I will speak now from experience. Of those who while in the world were employed in trade and commerce and became rich through these pursuits there are many in heaven, but not so many of those who were in stations of honor and became rich through those employments; and for the reason that these latter by the gains and honors that resulted from their dispensing justice and equity, and also by the lucrative and honorable positions bestowed on them were led into loving themselves and the world, and thereby separating their thoughts and affections from heaven and turning them to themselves. For to the extent that a man loves self and the world and looks to self and the world in everything, he alienates himself from the Divine and separates himself from heaven.


361. As to the lot of the rich in heaven, they live more splendidly than others. Some of them dwell in palaces within which everything is resplendent as if with gold and silver. They have an abundance of all things for the uses of life, but they do not in the least set their heart on these things, but only on uses. Uses are clearly seen as if they were in light, but the gold and silver are seen obscurely, and comparatively as if in shade. This is because while they were in the world they loved uses, and loved gold and silver only as means and instruments. It is the uses that are thus resplendent in heaven, the good of use like gold and the truth of use like silver.236 Therefore their wealth in heaven is such as their uses were in the world, and such, too, are their delight and happiness. Good uses are providing oneself and one’s own with the necessaries of life; also desiring wealth for the sake of one’s country and for the sake of one’s neighbor, whom a rich man can in many ways benefit more than a poor man. These are good uses because one is able thereby to withdraw his mind from an indolent life which is harmful, since in such a life man’s thoughts run to evil because of the evil inherent in him. These uses are good to the extent that they have the Divine in them, that is, to the extent that man looks to the Divine and to heaven, and finds his good in these, and sees in wealth only a subservient good.


362. But the lot of the rich that have not believed in the Divine, and have cast out of their minds the things pertaining to heaven and the church, is the opposite of this. Such are in hell, where filth, misery, and want exist; and into these riches that are loved as an end are changed; and not only riches, but also their very uses, which are either a wish to live as they like and indulge in pleasures, and to have opportunity to give the mind more fully and freely to shameful practices, or a wish to rise above others whom they despise.


Such riches and such uses, because they have nothing spiritual, but only what is earthly in them, become filthy; for a spiritual purpose in riches and their uses is like a soul in the body, or like the light of heaven in moist ground; and such riches and uses become putrid as a body does without a soul, or as moist ground does without the light of heaven. Such are those that have been led and drawn away from heaven by riches.


363. Every man’s ruling affection or love remains with him after death, nor is it rooted out to eternity, since a man’s spirit is wholly what his love is, and what is unknown, the body of every spirit and angel is the outward form of his love, exactly corresponding to his inward form, which is the form of his disposition and mind; consequently the quality of his spirit is known from his face, movements, and speech. While a man is living in the world the quality of the spirit would be known if he had not learned to counterfeit in his face, movements, and speech what is not his own. All this shows that man remains to eternity such as his ruling affection or love is.


It has been granted me to talk with some who lived seventeen hundred years ago, and whose lives are well known from writings of that time, and it was found that the same love still rules them as when they were on the earth. This makes clear also that the love of riches, and of uses from riches, remains with everyone to eternity, and that it is exactly the same as the love acquired in the world, yet with the difference that in the case of those who devoted their riches to good uses riches are changed in the other world into delights which are in accord with the uses performed; while in the case of those who devoted their riches to evil uses riches are turned into mere filth, in which they then take the same delight as they did in the world in their riches devoted to evil uses.


Such then take delight in filth because filthy pleasures and shameful acts, which had been the uses to which they had devoted their riches, and also avarice, which is a love of riches without regard to use, correspond to filth. Spiritual filth is nothing else.


364. The poor come into heaven not on account of their poverty but because of their life. Everyone’s life follows him, whether he be rich or poor. There is no peculiar mercy for one in preference to another;237 he that has lived well is received, while he that has not lived well is rejected.


Moreover, poverty leads and draws man away from heaven just as much as wealth does. There are many among the poor who are not content with their lot, who strive after many things, and believe riches to be blessings;238 and when they do not gain them are much provoked, and harbor ill thoughts about the Divine providence; they also envy others the good things they possess, and are as ready as anyone to defraud others whenever they have opportunity, and to indulge in filthy pleasures. But this is not true of the poor who are content with their lot, and are careful and diligent in their work, who love labor better than idleness, and act sincerely and faithfully, and at the same time live a Christian life. I have now and then talked with those belonging to the peasantry and common people, who while living in the world believed in God and did what was just and right in their occupations. Since they had an affection for knowing truth they inquired about charity and about faith, having heard in this world much about faith and in the other life much about charity. They were therefore told that charity is everything that pertains to life, and faith everything that pertains to doctrine; consequently charity is willing and doing what is just and right in every work, and faith is thinking justly and rightly; and faith and charity are conjoined, the same as doctrine and a life in accordance with it, or the same as thought and will; and faith becomes charity when that which a man thinks justly and rightly he also wills and does, and then they are not two but one. This they well understood, and rejoiced, saying that in the world they did not understand believing to be anything else but living.


365. All this makes clear that the rich and the poor alike come into heaven, the one as easily as the other. The belief that the poor enter heaven easily and the rich with difficulty comes from not understanding the Word where the rich and the poor are mentioned. In the Word those that have an abundance of knowledges of good and truth, thus who are within the church where the Word is, are meant in the spiritual sense by the “rich”; while those who lack these knowledges, and yet desire them, thus who are outside of the church and where there is no Word, are meant by the “poor.”


[2] The rich man clothed in purple and fine linen, and cast into hell, means the Jewish nation, which is called rich because it had the Word and had an abundance of knowledges of good and truth therefrom, “garments of purple” signifying knowledges of good, and “garments of fine linen” knowledges of truth.239 But the poor man who lay at the rich man’s gate and longed to be fed with the crumbs that fell from the rich man’s table, and who was carried by angels into heaven, means the nations that have no knowledges of good and truth and yet desired them (Luke 16:19-31). Also the rich that were called to a great supper and excused themselves mean the Jewish nation, and the poor brought in in their place mean the nations outside of the church (Luke 14:16-24).


[3] By the rich man of whom the Lord says:


It is easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God (Matt. 19:24);


the rich in both the natural sense and the spiritual sense are meant. In the natural sense the rich are those that have an abundance of riches and set their heart upon them; but in the spiritual sense they are those that have an abundance of knowledges and learning, which are spiritual riches, and who desire by means of these to introduce themselves into the things of heaven and the church from their own intelligence. And because this is contrary to Divine order it is said to be “easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye,” a “camel” signifying in general in the spiritual sense the knowing faculty and things known, and a “needle’s eye” signifying spiritual truth.240 That such is the meaning of a “camel” and a “needle’s eye” is not at present known, because the knowledge that teaches what is signified in the spiritual sense by the things said in the literal sense of the Word has not up to this time been disclosed. In every particular of the Word there is a spiritual sense and also a natural sense; for the Word was made to consist wholly of correspondences between natural and spiritual things in order that conjunction of heaven with the world, or of angels with men might thereby be effected, direct conjunction having ceased. This makes clear who in particular are meant in the Word by the “rich man.”


[4] That the “rich” in the Word mean in the spiritual sense those who are in knowledges of truth and good, and “riches” the knowledges themselves, which are spiritual riches, can be seen from various passages (as in Isa. 10:12-14; 30:6, 7; 45:3; Jer. 17:3; 48:7; 50:36, 37; 51:13; Dan. 5:2-4; Ezek. 26:7, 12; 27:1 to the end; Zech. 9:3, 4; Ps. 45:12; Hos. 12:9; Rev. 3:17, 18; Luke 14:33; and elsewhere). Also that the “poor” in the spiritual sense signify those who do not possess knowledges of good and of truth, and yet desire them (Matt. 11:5; Luke 6:20, 21; 14:21; Isa. 14:30; 29:19; 41:17, 18; Zeph. 3:12, 13). All these passages may be seen explained in accordance with the spiritual sense in Arcana Coelestia (n. 10227).






Marriages in Heaven



366. As heaven is from the human race, and angels therefore are of both sexes, and from creation woman is for man and man is for woman, thus the one belongs to the other, and this love is innate in both, it follows that there are marriages in heaven as well as on the earth. But marriages in heaven differ widely from marriages on the earth. Therefore what marriages in heaven are, and how they differ from marriages on the earth and wherein they are like them, shall now be told.


367. Marriage in heaven is a conjunction of two into one mind. It must first be explained what this conjunction is. The mind consists of two parts, one called the understanding and the other the will. When these two parts act as one they are called one mind. In heaven the husband acts the part called the understanding and the wife acts the part called the will. When this conjunction, which belongs to man’s interiors, descends into the lower parts pertaining to the body, it is perceived and felt as love, and this love is marriage love. This shows that marriage love has its origin in the conjunction of two into one mind. This in heaven is called cohabitation; and the two are not called two but one. So in heaven a married pair is spoken of, not as two, but as one angel.241


368. Moreover, such a conjunction of husband and wife in the inmosts of their minds comes from their very creation; for man is born to be intellectual, that is, to think from the understanding, while woman is born to be affectional, that is, to think from her will; and this is evident from the inclination or natural disposition of each, also from their form; from the disposition, in that man acts from reason and woman from affection; from the form in that man has a rougher and less beautiful face, a deeper voice and a harder body; while woman has a smoother and more beautiful face, a softer voice, and a more tender body. There is a like difference between understanding and will, or between thought and affection; so, too, between truth and good and between faith and love; for truth and faith belong to the understanding, and good and love to the will. From this it is that in the Word “youth” or “man” means in the spiritual sense the understanding of truth, and “virgin” or “woman” affection for good; also that the church, on account of its affection for good and truth, is called a “woman” and a “virgin”; also that all those that are in affection for good are called “virgins” (as in Rev. 14:4).242


369. Everyone, whether man or woman, possesses understanding and will; but with the man the understanding predominates, and with the woman the will predominates, and the character is determined by that which predominates. Yet in heavenly marriages there is no predominance; for the will of the wife is also the husband’s will, and the understanding of the husband is also the wife’s understanding, since each loves to will and to think like the other, that is mutually and reciprocally. Thus are they conjoined into one. This conjunction is actual conjunction, for the will of the wife enters into the understanding of the husband, and the understanding of the husband into the will of the wife, and this especially when they look into one another’s faces; for, as has been repeatedly said above, there is in the heavens a sharing of thoughts and affections, more especially with husband and wife, because they reciprocally love each other. This makes clear what the conjunction of minds is that makes marriage and produces marriage love in the heavens, namely, that one wishes what is his own to be the other’s, and this reciprocally.


370. I have been told by angels that so far as a married pair are so conjoined they are in marriage love, and also to the same extent in intelligence, wisdom and happiness, because Divine truth and Divine good, which are the source of all intelligence, wisdom, and happiness, flow chiefly into marriage love; consequently marriage love, since it is also the marriage of good and truth, is the very plane of Divine influx. For that love, as it is a conjunction of the understanding and will, is also a conjunction of truth and good, since the understanding receives Divine truth and is formed out of truths, and the will receives Divine good and is formed out of goods. For what a man wills is good to him, and what he understands is truth to him; therefore it is the same whether you say conjunction of understanding and will or conjunction of truth and good. Conjunction of truth and good is what makes an angel; it makes his intelligence, wisdom, and happiness; for an angel is an angel accordingly as good in him is conjoined with truth and truth with good; or what is the same, accordingly as love in him is conjoined with faith and faith with love.


371. The Divine that goes forth from the Lord flows chiefly into marriage love because marriage love descends from a conjunction of good and truth; for it is the same thing as has been said above, whether you say conjunction of understanding and will or conjunction of good and truth. Conjunction of good and truth has its origin in the Lord’s Divine love toward all who are in heaven and on earth. From Divine love Divine good goes forth, and Divine good is received by angels and men in Divine truths. As truth is the sole receptacle of good nothing can be received from the Lord and from heaven by anyone who is not in truths; therefore just to the extent that the truths in man are conjoined to good is man conjoined to the Lord and to heaven. This, then, is the very origin of marriage love, and for this reason that love is the very plane of Divine influx. This shows why the conjunction of good and truth in heaven is called the heavenly marriage, and heaven is likened in the Word to a marriage, and is called a marriage; and the Lord is called the “bridegroom” and “Husband,” and heaven and also the church are called the “bride” and the “wife.”243


372. Good and truth conjoined in an angel or a man are not two but one, since good is then good of truth and truth is truth of good. This conjunction may be likened to a man’s thinking what he wills and willing what he thinks, when the thought and will make one, that is, one mind; for thought forms, that is, presents in form that which the will wills, and the will gives delight to it; and this is why a married pair in heaven are not called two, but one angel. This also is what is meant by the Lord’s words:


Have ye not read that he who made them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother and shall cleave to his wife, and they twain shall become one flesh? Therefore, they are no more twain, but one flesh. What, therefore, God hath joined together let not man put asunder. Not all can receive this word but they to whom it is given (Matt. 19:4-6, 11; Mark 10:6-9; Gen. 2:24).


This is a description both of the heavenly marriage in which the angels are and of the marriage of good and truth, “man’s not putting asunder what God has joined together” meaning that good is not to be separated from truth.


373. From all this the origin of true marriage love is made clear, namely, that it is formed first in the minds of those who are in marriage, and descends therefrom and is derived into the body, where it is perceived and felt as love; for whatever is felt and perceived in the body has its origin in the spiritual, because it is from the understanding and the will. The understanding and the will constitute the spiritual man. Whatever descends from the spiritual man into the body presents itself there under another aspect, although it is similar and accordant, like soul and body, and like cause and effect; as can be seen from what has been said and shown in the two chapters on correspondences.


374. I heard an angel describing true marriage love and its heavenly delights in this manner: That it is the Lord’s Divine in the heavens, which is Divine good and Divine truth so united in two persons, that they are not as two but as one. He said that in heaven the two consorts are marriage love, since everyone is his own good and his own truth in respect both to mind and to body, the body being an image of the mind because it is formed after its likeness. From this he drew the conclusion that the Divine is imaged in the two that are in true marriage love; and as the Divine is so imaged so is heaven, because the entire heaven is Divine good and Divine truth going forth from the Lord; and this is why all things of heaven are inscribed on marriage love with more blessings and delights than it is possible to number.


He expressed the number by a term that involved myriads of myriads. He wondered that the man of the church should know nothing about this, seeing that the church is the Lord’s heaven on the earth, and heaven is a marriage of good and truth. He said he was astounded to think that within the church, even more than outside of it, adulteries are committed and even justified; the delight of which in itself is nothing else in a spiritual sense, and consequently in the spiritual world, than the delight of the love of falsity conjoined to evil, which delight is infernal delight, because it is the direct opposite of the delight of heaven, which is the delight of the love of truth conjoined with good.


375. Everyone knows that a married pair who love each other are interiorly united, and that the essential of marriage is the union of dispositions and minds. And from this it can be seen that such as their essential dispositions or minds are, such is their union and such their love for each other. The mind is formed solely out of truths and goods, for all things in the universe have relation to good and truth and to their conjunction; consequently such as the truths and goods are out of which the minds are formed, exactly such is the union of minds; and consequently the most perfect union is the union of minds that are formed out of genuine truths and goods. Let it be known that no two things mutually love each other more than truth and good do; and therefore it is from that love that true marriage love descends.244 Falsity and evil also love each other, but this love is afterwards changed into hell.


376. From what has now been said about the origin of marriage love one may conclude who are in that love and who are not; namely, that those are in marriage love who are in Divine good from Divine truths; and that marriage love is genuine just to the extent that the truths are genuine with which the good is conjoined. And as all the good that is conjoined with truths is from the Lord, it follows that no one can be in true marriage love unless he acknowledges the Lord and his Divine; for without that acknowledgment the Lord cannot flow in and be conjoined with the truths that are in man.


377. Evidently, then, those that are in falsities, and especially those that are in falsities from evil, are not in marriage love. Moreover, those that are in evil and in falsities therefrom have the interiors of their minds closed up; and in such, therefore, there can be no source of marriage love; but below those interiors, in the external or natural man separated from the internal, there can be a conjunction of falsity and evil, which is called infernal marriage. I have been permitted to see what this marriage is between those that are in the falsities of evil, which is called infernal marriage. Such converse together, and are united by a lustful desire, but inwardly they burn with a deadly hatred toward each other, too intense to be described.


378. Nor can marriage love exist between two partners belonging to different religions, because the truth of the one does not agree with the good of the other; and two unlike and discordant kinds of good and truth cannot make one mind out of two; and in consequence the love of such does not have its origin in anything spiritual. If they live together in harmony it is solely on natural grounds.245 And this is why in the heavens marriages are found only with those who are in the same society, because such are in like good and truth and not with those outside of the society. It may be seen above (n. 41 seq.) that all there in a society are in like good and truth, and differ from those outside the society. This was represented in the Israelitish nation by marriages being contracted within tribes, and particularly within families, and not outside of them.


379. Nor is true marriage love possible between one husband and several wives; for its spiritual origin, which is the formation of one mind out of two, is thus destroyed; and in consequence interior conjunction, which is the conjunction of good and truth, from which is the very essence of that love, is also destroyed. Marriage with more than one is like an understanding divided among several wills; or it is like a man attached not to one but to several churches, since his faith is so distracted thereby as to come to naught. The angels declare that marrying several wives is wholly contrary to Divine order, and that they know this from several reasons, one of which is that as soon as they think of marriage with more than one they are alienated from internal blessedness and heavenly happiness, and become like drunken men, because good is separated from its truth in them. And as the interiors of their mind are brought into such a state merely by thinking about it with some intention, they see clearly that marriage with more than one would close up their internal mind, and cause marriage to be displaced by lustful love, which love withdraws from heaven.246


[2] They declare further that this is not easily comprehended by men because there are few who are in genuine marriage love, and those who are not in it know nothing whatever of the interior delight that is in that love, knowing only the delight of lust, and this delight is changed into what is undelightful after living together a short time; while the delight of true marriage love not only endures to old age in the world, but after death becomes the delight of heaven and is there filled with an interior delight that grows more and more perfect to eternity. They said also that the varieties of blessedness of true marriage love could be enumerated even to many thousands, not even one of which is known to man, or could enter into the comprehension of anyone who is not in the marriage of good and truth from the Lord.


380. The love of dominion of one over the other entirely takes away marriage love and its heavenly delight, for as has been said above, marriage love and its delight consists in the will of one being that of the other, and this mutually and reciprocally. This is destroyed by love of dominion in marriage, since he that domineers wishes his will alone to be in the other, and nothing of the other’s will to be reciprocally in himself, which destroys all mutuality, and thus all sharing of any love and its delight one with the other. And yet this sharing and consequent conjunction are the interior delight itself that is called blessedness in marriage. This blessedness, with everything that is heavenly and spiritual in marriage love, is so completely extinguished by love of dominion as to destroy even all knowledge of it; and if that love were referred to it would be held in such contempt that any mention of blessedness from that source would excite either laughter or anger.


[2] When one wills or loves what the other wills or loves each has freedom, since all freedom is from love; but where there is dominion no one has freedom; one is a servant, and the other who rules is also a servant, for he is led as a servant by the lust of ruling. But all this is wholly beyond the comprehension of one who does not know what the freedom of heavenly love is. Nevertheless from what has been said above about the origin and essence of marriage love it can be seen that so far as dominion enters, minds are not united but divided. Dominion subjugates, and a subjugated mind has either no will or an opposing will. If it has no will it has also no love; and if it has an opposing will there is hatred in place of love.


[3] The interiors of those who live in such marriage are in mutual collision and strife, as two opposites are wont to be, however their exteriors may be restrained and kept quiet for the sake of tranquillity. The collision and antagonism of the interiors of such are disclosed after their death, when commonly they come together and fight like enemies and tear each other; for they then act in accordance with the state of the interiors. Frequently I have been permitted to see them fighting and tearing one another, sometimes with great vengeance and cruelty. For in the other life everyone’s interiors are set at liberty; and they are no longer restrained by outward bounds or by worldly considerations, everyone then being just such as he is interiorly.


381. To some a likeness of marriage love is granted. Yet unless they are in the love of good and truth there is no marriage love, but only a love which from several causes appears like marriage love, namely, that they may secure good service at home; that they may be free from care, or at peace, or at ease; that they may be cared for in sickness or in old age; or that the children whom they love may be attended to. Some are constrained by fear of the other consort, or by fear of the loss of reputation, or other evil consequences, and some by a controlling lust. Moreover, in the two consorts marriage love may differ; in one there may be more or less of it, in the other little or none; and because of this difference heaven may be the portion of one and hell the portion of the other.


382a. In the inmost heaven there is genuine marriage love because the angels there are in the marriage of good and truth, and also in innocence. The angels of the lower heavens are also in marriage love, but only so far as they are in innocence; for marriage love viewed in itself is a state of innocence; and this is why consorts who are in the marriage love enjoy heavenly delights together, which appear before their minds almost like the sports of innocence, as between little children; for everything delights their minds, since heaven with its joy flows into every particular of their lives. For the same reason marriage love is represented in heaven by the most beautiful objects. I have seen it represented by a maiden of indescribable beauty encompassed with a bright white cloud. It is said that the angels in heaven have all their beauty from marriage love. Affections and thought flowing from that love are represented by diamondlike auras with scintillations as if from carbuncles and rubies, which are attended by delights that affect the interiors of the mind. In a word, heaven itself is represented in marriage love, because heaven with the angels is the conjunction of good and truth, and it is this conjunction that makes marriage love.


382b. Marriages in heaven differ from marriages on the earth in that the procreation of offspring is another purpose of marriages on the earth, but not of marriages in heaven, since in heaven the procreation of good and truth takes the place of procreation of offspring. The former takes the place of the latter because marriage in heaven is a marriage of good and truth (as has been shown above); and as in that marriage good and truth and their conjunction are loved above all things so these are what are propagated by marriages in heaven. And because of this, in the Word births and generations signify spiritual births and generations, which are births and generations of good and truth; mother and father signify truth conjoined to good, which is what procreates; sons and daughters signify the truths and goods that are procreated; and sons-in-law and daughters-in-law conjunction of these, and so on.247 All this makes clear that marriages in heaven are not like marriages on earth. In heaven marryings are spiritual, and cannot properly be called marryings, but conjunctions of minds from the conjunction of good and truth. But on earth there are marryings, because these are not of the spirit alone but also of the flesh. And as there are no marryings in heaven, consorts there are not called husband and wife; but from the angelic idea of the joining of two minds into one, each consort designates the other by a name signifying one’s own, mutually and reciprocally. This shows how the Lord’s words in regard to marrying and giving in marriage (Luke 20:35, 36), are to be understood.


383. I have also been permitted to see how marriages are contracted in the heavens. As everywhere in heaven those who are alike are united and those who are unlike are separated, so every society in heaven consists of those who are alike. Like are brought to like not by themselves but by the Lord (see above, n. 41, 43, 44 seq.); and equally consort to consort whose minds can be joined into one are drawn together; and consequently at first sight they inmostly love each other, and see themselves to be consorts, and enter into marriage. For this reason all marriages in heaven are from the Lord alone. They have also marriage feasts; and these are attended by many; but the festivities differ in different societies.


384. Marriages on the earth are most holy in the sight of the angels of heaven because they are seminaries of the human race, and also of the angels of heaven (heaven being from the human race, as already shown under that head), also because these marriages are from a spiritual origin, namely, from the marriage of good and truth, and because the Lord’s Divine flows especially into marriage love. Adulteries on the other hand are regarded by the angels as profane because they are contrary to marriage love; for as in marriages the angels behold the marriage of good and truth, which is heaven, so in adulteries they behold the marriage of falsity and evil, which is hell. If, then, they but hear adulteries mentioned they turn away. And this is why heaven is closed up to man when he commits adultery from delight; and when heaven is closed man no longer acknowledges the Divine nor anything of the faith of church.248 That all who are in hell are antagonistic to marriage love I have been permitted to perceive from the sphere exhaling from hell, which was like an unceasing endeavor to dissolve and violate marriages; which shows that the reigning delight in hell is the delight of adultery, and the delight of adultery is a delight in destroying the conjunction of good and truth, which conjunction makes heaven. From this it follows that the delight of adultery is an infernal delight directly opposed to the delight of marriage, which is a heavenly delight.


385. There were certain spirits who, from a practice acquired in the life of the body, infested me with peculiar craftiness, and this by a very gentle wavelike influx like the usual influx of well disposed spirits; but I perceived that there was craftiness and other like evils in them prompting them to ensnare and deceive. Finally, I talked with one of them who, I was told, had been when he lived in the world the leader of an army; and perceiving that there was a lustfulness in the ideas of his thought I talked with him about marriage, using spiritual speech with representatives, which fully expresses all that is meant and many things in a moment. He said that in the life of the body he had regarded adulteries as of no account. But I was permitted to tell him that adulteries are heinous, although to those like himself they do not appear to be such, and even appear permissible, on account of their seductive and enticing delights. That they are heinous he might know from the fact that marriages are the seminaries of the human race, and thus also the seminaries of the heavenly kingdom; consequently they must on no account be violated, but must be esteemed holy. This he might know from the fact, which he ought to know because of his being in the other life and in a state of perception, that marriage love descends from the Lord through heaven, and from that love, as from a parent, mutual love, which is the foundation of heaven, is derived; and again from this, that if adulterers merely draw near to heavenly societies they perceive their own stench and cast themselves down therefrom toward hell. At least he must have known that to violate marriages is contrary to Divine laws, and contrary to the civil laws of all kingdoms, also contrary to the genuine light of reason, because it is contrary to both Divine and human order; not to mention other considerations. But he replied that he had not so thought in the life of the body. He wished to reason about whether it were so, but was told that truth does not admit of such reasonings; for reasonings defend what one delights in, and thus one’s evils and falsities; that he ought first to think about the things that had been said because they are truths; or at least think about them from the principle well known in the world, that no one should do to another what he is unwilling that another should do to him; thus he should consider whether he himself would not have detested adulteries if anyone had in that way deceived his wife, whom he had loved as everyone loves in the first period of marriage, and if in his state of wrath he had expressed himself on the subject; also whether being a man of talent he would not in that case have confirmed himself more decidedly than others against adulteries, even condemning them to hell.


386. I have been shown how the delights of marriage love advance toward heaven, and the delights of adultery toward hell. The advance of the delights of marriage love toward heaven is into states of blessedness and happiness continually increasing until they become innumerable and ineffable, and the more interiorly they advance the more innumerable and more ineffable they become, until they reach the very states of blessedness and happiness of the inmost heaven, or of the heaven of innocence, and this through the most perfect freedom; for all freedom is from love, thus the most perfect freedom is from marriage love, which is heavenly love itself. On the other hand, the advance of adultery is toward hell, and by degrees to the lowest hell, where there is nothing but what is direful and horrible. Such a lot awaits adulterers after their life in the world, those being meant by adulterers who feel a delight in adulteries, and no delight in marriages.






The Occupations of Angels in Heaven



387. It is impossible to enumerate the occupations in the heavens, still less to describe them in detail, but something may be said about them in a general way; for they are numberless, and vary in accordance with the functions of the societies. Each society has its peculiar function, for as societies are distinct in accordance with goods (see above, n. 41), so they are distinct in accordance with uses, because with all in the heavens goods are goods in act, which are uses. Everyone there performs a use, for the Lord’s kingdom is a kingdom of uses.249


388. In the heavens as on the earth there are many forms of service, for there are ecclesiastical affairs, there are civil affairs, and there are domestic affairs. That there are ecclesiastical affairs is evident from what has been said and shown above, where Divine worship is treated of (n. 221-227); civil affairs, where governments in heaven are treated of (n. 213-220); and domestic affairs, where the dwellings and homes of angels are treated of (n. 183-190); and marriages in heaven (n. 366-368); all of which show that in every heavenly society there are many occupations and services.


389. All things in the heavens are organized in accordance with Divine order, which is everywhere guarded by the services performed by angels, those things that pertain to the general good or use by the wiser angels, those that pertain to particular uses by the less wise, and so on. They are subordinated just as uses are subordinated in the Divine order; and for this reason a dignity is connected with every function according to the dignity of the use. Nevertheless, an angel does not claim dignity to himself, but ascribes all dignity to the use; and as the use is the good that he accomplishes, and all good is from the Lord, so he ascribes all dignity to the Lord. Therefore he that thinks of honor for himself and subsequently for the use, and not for the use and subsequently for himself, can perform no function in heaven, because this is looking away backwards from the Lord, and putting self in the first place and use in the second. When use is spoken of the Lord also is meant, because, as has just been said, use is good, and good is from the Lord.


390. From this it may be inferred what subordinations in the heavens are, namely, that as anyone loves, esteems, and honors the use he also loves, esteems, and honors the person with whom the use is connected; also that the person is loved, esteemed and honored in the measure in which he ascribes the use to the Lord and not to himself; for to that extent he is wise, and the uses he performs he performs from good. Spiritual love, esteem, and honor are nothing else than the love, esteem, and honor of the use in the person, together with the honor to the person because of the use, and not honor to the use because of the person. This is the way, moreover, in which men are regarded when they are regarded from spiritual truth, for one man is then seen to be like another, whether he be in great or in little dignity, the only perceptible difference being a difference in wisdom; and wisdom is loving use, that is, loving the good of a fellow citizen, of society, of one’s country, and of the church. It is this that constitutes love to the Lord, because every good that is a good of use is from the Lord; and it constitutes also love toward the neighbor, because the neighbor means the good that is to be loved in a fellow citizen, in society, in one’s country, and in the church, and that is to be done in their behalf.250


391. As all the societies in the heavens are distinct in accordance with their goods (as said above, n. 41 seq.) so they are distinct in accordance with their uses, goods being goods in act, that is, goods of charity which are uses. Some societies are employed in taking care of little children; others in teaching and training them as they grow up; others in teaching and training in like manner the boys and girls that have acquired a good disposition from their education in the world, and in consequence have come into heaven. There are other societies that teach the simple good from the Christian world, and lead them into the way to heaven; there are others that in like manner teach and lead the various heathen nations.


There are some societies that defend from infestations by evil spirits the newly arrived spirits that have just come from the world; there are some that attend upon the spirits that are in the lower earth; also some that attend upon spirits that are in the hells, and restrain them from tormenting each other beyond prescribed limits; and there are some that attend upon those who are being raised from the dead. In general, angels from each society are sent to men to watch over them and to lead them away from evil affections and consequent thoughts, and to inspire them with good affections so far as they will receive them in freedom; and by means of these they also direct the deeds or works of men by removing as far as possible evil intentions.


When angels are with men they dwell as it were in their affections; and they are near to man just in the degree in which he is in good from truths, and are distant from him just in the degree in which his life is distant from good.251 But all these occupations of angels are occupations of the Lord through the angels, for the angels perform them from the Lord and not from themselves. For this reason, in the Word in its internal sense “angels” mean, not angels, but something belonging to the Lord; and for the same reason angels are called “gods” in the Word.252


392. These occupations of the angels are their general occupations; but each one has his particular charge; for every general use is composed of innumerable uses which are called mediate, ministering, and subservient uses, all and each coordinated and subordinated in accordance with Divine order, and taken together constituting and perfecting the general use, which is the general good.


393. Those are concerned with ecclesiastical affairs in heaven who in the world loved the Word and eagerly sought in it for truths, not with honor or gain as an end, but uses of life both for themselves and for others. These in heaven are in enlightenment and in the light of wisdom in the measure of their love and desire for use; and this light of wisdom they receive from the Word in heaven, which is not a natural Word, as it is in the world, but a spiritual Word (see above, n. 259). These minister in the preaching office; and in accordance with Divine order those are in higher positions who from enlightenment excel others in wisdom.


[2] Those are concerned with civil affairs who in the world loved their country, and loved its general good more than their own, and did what is just and right from a love for what is just and right. So far as these from the eagerness of love have investigated the laws of justice and have thereby become intelligent, they have the ability to perform such functions in heaven, and they perform these in that position or degree that accords with their intelligence, their intelligence being in equal degree with their love of use for the general good.


[3] Furthermore, there are in heaven more functions and services and occupations than can be enumerated; while in the world there are few in comparison. But however many there may be that are so employed, they are all in the delight of their work and labor from a love of use, and no one from a love of self or of gain; and as all the necessaries of life are furnished them gratuitously they have no love of gain for the sake of a living. They are housed gratuitously, clothed gratuitously, and fed gratuitously. Evidently, then, those that have loved themselves and the world more than use have no lot in heaven; for his love or affection remains with everyone after his life in the world, and is not extirpated to eternity (see above, n. 563).


394. In heaven everyone comes into his own occupation in accordance with correspondence, and the correspondence is not with the occupation but with the use of each occupation (see above, n. 112); for there is a correspondence of all things (see n. 106). He that in heaven comes into the employment or occupation corresponding to his use is in much the same condition of life as when he was in the world; since what is spiritual and what is natural make one by correspondences; yet there is this difference, that he then comes into an interior delight, because into spiritual life, which is an interior life, and therefore more receptive of heavenly blessedness.






Heavenly Joy and Happiness



395. Hardly anyone at present knows what heaven is or what heavenly joy is. Those who have given any thought to these subjects have had so general and so gross an idea about them as scarcely to amount to anything. From spirits that have come from the world into the other life I have been able to learn fully what idea they had of heaven and heavenly joy; for when left to themselves, as they were in the world, they think as they then did. There is this ignorance about heavenly joy for the reason that those who have thought about it have formed their opinion from the outward joys pertaining to the natural man, and have not known what the inner and spiritual man is, nor in consequence the nature of his delight and blessedness; and therefore even if they had been told by those who are in spiritual or inward delight what heavenly joy is, would have had no comprehension of it, for it could have fallen only into an idea not yet recognized, thus into no perception; and would therefore have been among the things that the natural man rejects. Yet everyone can understand that when a man leaves his outer or natural man he comes into the inner or spiritual man, and consequently can see that heavenly delight is internal and spiritual, not external and natural; and being internal and spiritual, it is more pure and exquisite, and affects the interiors of man which pertain to his soul or spirit. From these things alone everyone may conclude that his delight is such as the delight of his spirit has previously been and that the delight of the body, which is called the delight of the flesh, is in comparison not heavenly; also that whatever is in the spirit of man when he leaves the body remains after death, since he then lives as a man-spirit.


396. All delights flow forth from love, for that which a man loves he feels to be delightful. No one has any delight from any other source. From this it follows that such as the love is such is the delight. The delights of the body or of the flesh all flow forth from the love of self and love of the world; consequently they are lusts and their pleasures; while the delights of the soul or spirit all flow forth from love to the Lord and love toward the neighbor, consequently they are affections for good and truth and interior satisfactions. These loves with their delights flow in out of heaven from the Lord by an inner way, that is, from above, and affect the interiors; while the former loves with their delights flow in from the flesh and from the world by an external way, that is, from beneath, and affect the exteriors. Therefore as far as the two loves of heaven are received and make themselves felt, the interiors of man, which belong to his soul or spirit and which look from the world heavenwards, are opened, while so far as the two loves of the world are received and make themselves felt, his exteriors, which belong to the body or flesh and look away from heaven toward the world, are opened. As loves flow in and are received their delights also flow in, the delights of heaven into the interiors and the delights of the world into the exteriors, since all delight, as has just been said above, belongs to love.


397. Heaven in itself is so full of delights that viewed in itself it is nothing else than blessedness and delight; for the Divine good that flows forth from the Lord’s Divine love is what makes heaven in general and in particular with everyone there, and the Divine love is a longing for the salvation of all and the happiness of all from inmosts and in fullness. Thus whether you say heaven or heavenly joy it is the same thing.


398. The delights of heaven are both ineffable and innumerable; but he that is in the mere delight of the body or of the flesh can have no knowledge of or belief in a single one of these innumerable delights; for his interiors, as has just been said, look away from heaven toward the world, thus backwards. For he that is wholly in the delight of the body or of the flesh, or what is the same, in the love of self and of the world, has no sense of delight except in honor, in gain, and in the pleasures of the body and the senses; and these so extinguish and suffocate the interior delights that belong to heaven as to destroy all belief in them; consequently he would be greatly astonished if he were told that when the delights of honor and of gain are set aside other delights are given, and still more if he were told that the delights of heaven that take the place of these are innumerable, and are such as cannot be compared with the delights of the body and the flesh, which are chiefly the delights of honor and of gain. All this makes clear why it is not known what heavenly joy is.


399. One can see how great the delight of heaven must be from the fact that it is the delight of everyone in heaven to share his delights and blessings with others; and as such is the character of all that are in the heavens it is clear how immeasurable is the delight of heaven. It has been shown above (n. 268), that in the heavens there is a sharing of all with each and of each with all. Such sharing goes forth from the two loves of heaven, which are, as has been said, love to the Lord and love toward the neighbor; and to share their delights is the very nature of these loves. Love to the Lord is such because the Lord’s love is a love of sharing everything it has with all, since it wills the happiness of all. There is a like love in every one of those who love the Lord, because the Lord is in them; and from this comes the mutual sharing of the delights of angels with one another. Love toward the neighbor is of such a nature, as will be seen in what follows. All this shows that it is the nature of these loves to share their delights. It is otherwise with the loves of self and of the world. The love of self takes away from others and robs others of all delight, and directs it to itself, for it wishes well to itself alone; while the love of the world wishes to have as its own what belongs to the neighbor. Therefore these loves are destructive of the delights of others; or if there is any disposition to share, it is for the sake of themselves and not for the sake of others. Thus in respect to others it is the nature of those loves not to share but to take away, except so far as the delights of others have some relation to self. That the loves of self and of the world, when they rule, are such I have often been permitted to perceive by living experience. Whenever the spirits that were in these loves during their life as men in the world drew near, my delight receded and vanished; and I was told that at the mere approach of such to any heavenly society the delight of those in the society diminished just in the degree of their proximity; and what is wonderful, the evil spirits are then in their delight. All this indicates the state of the spirit of such a man while he is in the body, since it is the same as it is after it is separated from the body, namely, that it longs for or lusts after the delights or goods of another, and finds delight so far as it secures them. All this makes clear that the loves of self and of the world tend to destroy the joys of heaven, and are thus direct opposites of heavenly loves, which desire to share.


400. But it must be understood that the delight of those who are in the loves of self and of the world, when they draw near to any heavenly society, is the delight of their lust, and thus is directly opposite to the delight of heaven. And such enter into this delight of their lust in consequence of their taking away and dispelling heavenly delight in those that are in such delight. When the heavenly delight is not taken away or dispelled it is different, for they are then unable to draw near; for so far as they draw near they bring upon themselves anguish and pain; and for this reason they do not often venture to come near. This also I have been permitted to learn by repeated experience, something of which I would like to add.


[2] Spirits who go from this world into the other life desire more than anything else to get into heaven. Nearly all seek to enter, supposing that heaven consists solely in being admitted and received. Because of this desire they are brought to some society of the lowest heaven. But as soon as those who are in the love of self and of the world draw near the first threshold of that heaven they begin to be distressed and so tortured inwardly as to feel hell rather than heaven to be in them; and in consequence they cast themselves down headlong therefrom, and do not rest until they come into the hells among their like.


[3] It has also frequently occurred that such spirits have wished to know what heavenly joy is, and having heard that it is in the interiors of angels, they have wished to share in it. This therefore was granted; for whatever a spirit who is not yet in heaven or hell wishes is granted if it will benefit him. But as soon as that joy was communicated they began to be so tortured as not to know how to twist or turn because of the pain. I saw them thrust their heads down to their feet and cast themselves upon the ground, and there writhe into coils like serpents, and this in consequence of their interior agony. Such was the effect produced by heavenly delight upon those who are in the delights of the love of self and of the world; and for the reason that these loves are directly opposite to heavenly loves, and when opposite acts against opposite such pain results. And since heavenly delight enters by an inward way and flows into the contrary delight, the interiors which are in the contrary delight are twisted backwards, thus into the opposite direction, and the result is such tortures.


[4] They are opposite for the reason given above, that love to the Lord and love to the neighbor wish to share with others all that is their own, for this is their delight, while the loves of self and of the world wish to take away from others what they have, and take it to themselves; and just to the extent that they are able to do this they are in their delight. From this, too, one can see what it is that separates hell from heaven; for all that are in hell were, while they were living in the world, in the mere delights of the body and of the flesh from the love of self and of the world; while all that are in the heavens were, while they lived in the world, in the delights of the soul and spirit from love to the Lord and love to the neighbor; and as these are opposite loves, so the hells and the heavens are entirely separated, and indeed so separated that a spirit in hell does not venture even to put forth a finger from it or raise the crown of his head, for if he does this in the least he is racked with pain and tormented. This, too, I have frequently seen.


401. One who is in the love of self and love of the world perceives while he lives in the body a sense of delight from these loves and also in the particular pleasures derived from these loves. But one who is in love to God and in love toward the neighbor does not perceive while he lives in the body any distinct sense of delight from these loves or from the good affections derived from them, but only a blessedness that is hardly perceptible, because it is hidden away in his interiors and veiled by the exteriors pertaining to the body and dulled by the cares of the world. But after death these states are entirely changed. The delights of love of self and of the world are then turned into what is painful and direful, because into such things as are called infernal fire, and by turns into things defiled and filthy corresponding to their unclean pleasures, and these, wonderful to tell, are then delightful to them. But the obscure delight and almost imperceptible blessedness of those that had been while in the world in love to God and in love to the neighbor are then turned into the delight of heaven, and become in every way perceived and felt, for the blessedness that lay hidden and unrecognized in their interiors while they lived in the world is then revealed and brought forth into evident sensation, because such had been the delight of their spirit, and they are then in the spirit.


402. In uses all the delights of heaven are brought together and are present, because uses are the goods of love and charity in which angels are; therefore everyone has delights that are in accord with his uses, and in the degree of his affection for use. That all the delights of heaven are delights of use can be seen by a comparison with the five bodily senses of man. There is given to each sense a delight in accordance with its use; to the sight, the hearing, the smell, the taste, and the touch, each its own delight; to the sight a delight from beauty and from forms, to the hearing from harmonious sounds, to the smell from pleasing odors, to taste from fine flavors. These uses which the senses severally perform are known to those who study them, and more fully to those who are acquainted with correspondences. Sight has such a delight because of the use it performs to the understanding, which is the inner sight; the hearing has such a delight because of the use it performs both to the understanding and to the will through giving attention; the smell has such a delight because of the use it performs to the brain, and also to the lungs; the taste has such a delight because of the use it performs to the stomach, and thus to the whole body by nourishing it. The delight of marriage, which is a purer and more exquisite delight of touch, transcends all the rest because of its use, which is the procreation of the human race and thereby of angels of heaven. These delights are in these sensories by an influx of heaven, where every delight pertains to use and is in accordance with use.


403. There were some spirits who believed from an opinion adopted in the world that heavenly happiness consists in an idle life in which they would be served by others; but they were told that happiness never consists in abstaining from work and getting satisfaction therefrom. This would mean everyone’s desiring the happiness of others for himself, and what everyone wished for no one would have. Such a life would be an idle not an active life, and would stupefy all the powers of life; and everyone ought to know that without activity of life there can be no happiness of life, and that rest from this activity should be only for the sake of recreation, that one may return with more vigor to the activity of his life. They were then shown by many evidences that angelic life consists in performing the good works of charity, which are uses, and that the angels find all their happiness in use, from use, and in accordance with use. To those that held the opinion that heavenly joy consists in living an idle life and drawing breaths of eternal joy in idleness, a perception was given of what such a life is, that they might become ashamed of the idea; and they saw that such a life is extremely sad, and that all joy thus perishing they would in a little while feel only loathing and disgust for it.


404. There were some spirits who thought themselves better instructed than others, and who said that they had believed in the world that heavenly joy would consist solely in praising and giving glory to God, and that this would be an active life. But these were told that praising and giving glory to God is not a proper active life, also that God has no need of praises and glorification, but it is his will that they should perform uses, and thus the good works that are called goods of charity. But they were unable to associate with goods of charity any idea of heavenly joy, but only of servitude, although the angels testified that this joy is most free because it comes from an interior affection and is conjoined with ineffable delight.


405. Almost all who enter the other life think that hell is the same to everyone, and heaven the same; and yet in both there are infinite varieties and diversities, and in no case is hell or heaven wholly the same to one as to another; as it is impossible that any one man, spirit, or angel should ever be wholly like another even as to the face. At my mere thought of two being just alike or equal the angels expressed horror, saying that every one thing is formed out of the harmonious concurrence of many things, and that the one thing is such as that concurrence is; and that it is thus that a whole society in heaven becomes a one, and that all the societies of heaven together become a one, and this from the Lord alone by means of love.253 Uses in the heavens are likewise in all variety and diversity, and in no case is the use of one wholly the same as and identical with the use of another; so neither is the happiness of one the same as and identical with the happiness of another. Furthermore, the delights of each use are innumerable, and these innumerable delights are likewise various, and yet conjoined in such order that they mutually regard each other, like the uses of each member, organ, and viscus, in the body, and still more like the uses of each vessel and fiber in each member, organ and viscus; each and all of which are so affiliated as to have regard to another’s good in their own good, and thus each in all, and all in each. From this universal and individual aspect they act as one.


406. I have talked at times with spirits that had recently come from the world about the state of eternal life, saying that it is important to know who the Lord of the kingdom is, and what kind and what form of government it has. As nothing is more important for those entering another kingdom in the world than to know who and what the king is, and what the government is, and other particulars in regard to the kingdom, so is it of still greater consequence in regard to this kingdom in which they are to live to eternity. Therefore they should know that it is the Lord who governs both heaven and the universe, for he who governs the one governs the other; thus that the kingdom in which they now are is the Lord’s; and that the laws of this kingdom are eternal truths, all of which rest upon the law that the Lord must be loved above all things and the neighbor as themselves; and even more than this, if they would be like the angels they must love the neighbor more than themselves. On hearing this they could make no reply, for the reason that although they had heard in the life of the body something like this they had not believed it, wondering how there could be such love in heaven, and how it could be possible for anyone to love his neighbor more than himself. But they were told that every good increases immeasurably in the other life, and that while they cannot go further in the life of the body than to love the neighbor as themselves, because they are immersed in what concerns the body, yet when this is set aside their love becomes more pure, and finally becomes angelic, which is to love the neighbor more than themselves. For in the heavens there is joy in doing good to another, but no joy in doing good to self unless with a view to its becoming another’s, and thus for another’s sake. This is loving the neighbor more than oneself. They were told that the possibility of such a love is shown in the world in the marriage love of some who have suffered death to protect a consort from injury, in the love of parents for their children, as in a mother’s preferring to go hungry rather than see her child go hungry; in sincere friendship, in which one friend will expose himself to danger for another; and even in polite and pretended friendship that wishes to emulate sincere friendship, in offering the better things to those to whom it professes to wish well, and bearing such good will on the lips though not in the heart; finally, in the nature of love, which is such that its joy is to serve others, not for its own sake but for theirs. But all this was incomprehensible to those who loved themselves more than others, and in the life of the body had been greedy of gain; most of all to the avaricious.


407. There was one who in the life of the body had exercised power over others, and who had retained in the other life the desire to rule; but he was told that he was now in another kingdom, which is eternal, and that his rule on earth had perished, and that he was now where no one is esteemed except in accordance with his goodness and truth, and that measure of the Lord’s mercy which he enjoyed by virtue of his life in the world; also that the same is true in this kingdom as on the earth, where men are esteemed for their wealth and for their favor with the prince, wealth here being good and truth, and favor with the prince the mercy bestowed on man by the Lord in accordance with his life in the world. Any wish to rule otherwise would make him a rebel, since he is in another’s kingdom. On hearing these things he was ashamed.


408. I have talked with spirits who believed heaven and heavenly joy to consist in their being great; but such were told that in heaven he that is least is greatest, since he is called least who has, and wishes to have, no power or wisdom from himself, but only from the Lord, he that is least in that sense having the greatest happiness, and as he has the greatest happiness, it follows that he is greatest; for he has thereby from the Lord all power and excels all in wisdom. What is it to be the greatest unless to be the most happy? For to be the most happy is what the powerful seek through power and the rich through riches. It was further said that heaven does not consist in a desire to be least for the purpose of being greatest, for that would be aspiring and longing to be the greatest; but it consists in desiring from the heart the good of others more than one’s own, and in serving others with a view to their happiness, not with recompense as an end, but from love.


409. Heavenly joy itself, such as it is in its essence, cannot be described, because it is in the inmost of the life of angels and therefrom in everything of their thought and affection, and from this in every particular of their speech and action. It is as if the interiors were fully opened and unloosed to receive delight and blessedness, which are distributed to every least fiber and thus through the whole. Thus the perception and sensation of this joy is so great as to be beyond description, for that which starts from the inmosts flows into every particular derived from the inmosts, propagating itself away with increase toward the exteriors. Good spirits who are not yet in that joy, because not yet raised up into heaven, when they perceive a sense of that joy from an angel from the sphere of his love, are filled with such delight that they come as it were into a delicious trance. This sometimes happens with those who desire to know what heavenly joy is.


410. When certain spirits wished to know what heavenly joy is they were allowed to feel it to such a degree that they could no longer bear it; and yet it was not angelic joy; it was scarcely in the least degree angelic, as I was permitted to perceive by sharing it, but was so slight as to be almost frigid; nevertheless they called it most heavenly, because to them it was an inmost joy. From this it was evident, not only that there are degrees of the joys of heaven, but also that the inmost joy of one scarcely reaches to the outmost or middle joy of another; also that when anyone receives his own inmost joy he is in his heavenly joy, and cannot endure what is still more interior, for such a joy becomes painful to him.


411. Certain spirits, not evil, sinking into a quiescence like sleep, were taken up into heaven in respect to the interiors of their minds; for before their interiors are opened spirits can be taken up into heaven and be taught about the happiness of those there. I saw them in the quiescent state for about half an hour, and afterwards they relapsed into their exteriors in which they were before, and also into a recollection of what they had seen. They said that they had been among the angels in heaven, and had there seen and perceived amazing things, all of which were resplendent as if made of gold, silver, and precious stones, in exquisite forms and in wonderful variety; also that angels are not delighted with the outward things themselves, but with the things they represented, which were Divine, ineffable, and of infinite wisdom, and that these were their joy; with innumerable other things that could not be described in human language even as to a ten-thousandth part, or fall into ideas which partake of anything material.


412. Scarcely any who enter the other life know what heavenly blessedness and happiness are, because they do not know what internal joy is, deriving their perception of it solely from bodily and worldly gladness and joy; and in consequence what they are ignorant of they suppose to be nothing, when in fact bodily and worldly joys are of no account in comparison. In order, therefore, that the well disposed, who do not know what heavenly joy is, may know and realize what it is, they are taken first to paradisaical scenes that transcend every conception of the imagination. They then think that they have come into the heavenly paradise; but they are taught that this is not true heavenly happiness; and they are permitted to realize such interior states of joy as are perceptible to their inmost. They are then brought into a state of peace even to their inmost, when they confess that nothing of it is in the least expressible or conceivable. Finally they are brought into a state of innocence even to their inmost sense. Thus they are permitted to learn what true spiritual and heavenly good is.


413. But that I might learn the nature of heaven and heavenly joy I have frequently and for a long time been permitted by the Lord to perceive the delights of heavenly joys; but while I have been enabled to know by living experience what they are I am not at all able to describe them. Nevertheless, that some idea of them may be formed, something shall be said about them. Heavenly joy is an affection of innumerable delights and joys, which together present something general, and in this general, that is, this general affection, are harmonies of innumerable affections that come to perception obscurely, and not distinctly, because the perception is most general. Nevertheless I was permitted to perceive that there are innumerable things in it, in such order as cannot be at all described, those innumerable things being such as flow from the order of heaven. The order in the particulars of the affection even to the least, is such that these particulars are presented and perceived only as a most general whole, in accordance with the capacity of him who is the subject. In a word, each general affection contains infinite affections arranged in a most orderly form, with nothing therein that is not alive, and that does not affect all of them from the inmosts; for heavenly joys go forth from inmosts. I perceived also that the joy and ecstasy came as from the heart, diffusing most softly through all the inmost fibers, and from these into the bundles of fibers, with such an inmost sense of delight that the fiber seemed to be nothing but joy and ecstasy, and everything perceptive and sensitive therefrom seemed in like manner to be alive with happiness. Compared with these joys the joy of bodily pleasures is like a gross and pungent dust compared with a pure and most gentle aura. I have noticed that when I wished to transfer all my delight to another, a more interior and fuller delight continually flowed in in its place, and the more I wished this, the more flowed in; and this was perceived to be from the Lord.


414. Those that are in heaven are continually advancing toward the spring of life, with a greater advance toward a more joyful and happy spring the more thousands of years they live; and this to eternity, with increase according to the growth and degree of their love, charity, and faith. Women who have died old and worn out with age, if they have lived in faith in the Lord, in charity to the neighbor, and in happy marriage love with a husband, advance with the succession of years more and more into the flower of youth and early womanhood, and into a beauty that transcends every conception of any such beauty as is seen on the earth. Goodness and charity are what give this form and thus manifest their own likeness, causing the joy and beauty of charity to shine forth from every least particular of the face, and causing them to be the very forms of charity. Some who beheld this were struck with amazement. The form of charity that is seen in a living way in heaven, is such that it is charity itself that both forms and is formed; and this in such a manner that the whole angel is a charity, as it were, especially the face; and this is both clearly seen and felt. When this form is beheld it is beauty unspeakable, affecting with charity the very inmost life of the mind. In a word, to grow old in heaven is to grow young. Such forms or such beauties do those become in the other life who have lived in love to the Lord and in charity toward the neighbor. All angels are such forms in endless variety; and of these heaven is constituted.






The Immensity of Heaven



415. The immensity of the heaven of the Lord is evident from many things that have been said and shown in the foregoing chapters, especially from this, that heaven is from the human race (n. 311-317), both from those born within the church and from those born out of it (n. 318-328); thus it consists of all from the beginning of this earth that have lived a good life. How great a multitude of men there is in this entire world anyone who knows anything about the divisions, the regions, and kingdoms of the earth may conclude. Whoever goes into a calculation will find that several thousands of men die every day, that is, some myriads of millions every year; and this from the earliest times, since which several thousands of years have elapsed. All of these after death have gone into the other world, which is called the spiritual world, and they are constantly going into it. But how many of these have become or are becoming angels of heaven cannot be told. This I have been told, that in ancient times the number was very great, because men then thought more interiorly and spiritually, and from such thought were in heavenly affection; but in the following ages not so many, because in the process of time man became more external and began to think more naturally, and from such thought to be in earthly affection. All of this shows how great heaven is even from the inhabitants of this earth alone.


416. The immensity of the heaven of the Lord is shown also by this, that all children, whether born within the church or out of it, are adopted by the Lord and become angels; and the number of these amounts to a fourth or fifth part of the whole human race on the earth. That every child, wherever born, whether within the church or out of it, whether of pious or impious parents, is received by the Lord when it dies, and is brought up in heaven, and is taught and imbued with affections for good, and through these with knowledges of truth, in accordance with Divine order, and as he becomes perfected in intelligence and wisdom is brought into heaven and becomes an angel, can be seen above (n. 329-345). From all this a conclusion may be formed of the multitude of angels of heaven, derived from this source alone, from the first creation to the present time.


417. Again, how immense the heaven of the Lord is can be seen from this, that all the planets visible to the eye in our solar system are earths, and moreover, that in the whole universe there are innumerable earths, all of them full of inhabitants. These have been treated of particularly in a small work on those earths from which I will quote the following passage:


It is fully known in the other life that there are many earths inhabited by men from which spirits and angels come; for everyone there who desires from a love of truth and of use to do so is permitted to talk with spirits of other earths, and thus be assured that there is a plurality of worlds, and learn that the human race is not from one earth alone, but from innumerable earths. I have frequently talked about this with spirits of our earth, and was told that any intelligent person ought to know from many things that he does know that there are many earths inhabited by men; for it may be reasonably inferred that immense bodies like the planets, some of which exceed this earth in magnitude, are not empty masses created merely to be borne through space and to be carried around the sun, and to shine with their scanty light for the benefit of a single earth, but must have a more important use. He that believes, as everyone must believe, that the Divine created the universe for no other end than that the human race might exist, and heaven therefrom, for the human race is a seminary of heaven, must needs believe that wherever there is an earth there are men. That the planets visible to us because they are within the limits of our solar system are earths is evident from their being bodies of earthy matters, which is known from their reflecting the sun’s light, and from their not appearing, when viewed through telescopes, like stars, sparkling with flame, but like earths varied with darker portions; also from their passing like our earth around the sun and following in the path of the zodiac, thus making years and seasons of the year, spring, summer, autumn, and winter, also revolving on their axes like our earth, making days and times of the day, morning, midday, evening, and night; also from some of them having moons, called satellites, that revolve around their earth at stated times, as the moon does around ours; while the planet Saturn, being at a greater distance from the sun, has also a large luminous belt which gives much light, though reflected, to that earth. Who that knows all this and thinks rationally can ever say that the planets are empty bodies? Moreover, I have said to spirits that man might believe that there are more earths in the universe than one, from the fact that the starry heaven is so immense, and the stars there so innumerable, and each of them in its place or in its system a sun, resembling our sun, although of a varying magnitude. Anyone who duly weighs the subject must conclude that such an immense whole must needs be a means to an end that is the final end of creation; and this end is a heavenly kingdom in which the Divine may dwell with angels and men. For the visible universe or the heaven illumined by stars so numberless, which are so many suns, is simply a means for the existence of earths with men upon them from whom the heavenly kingdom is derived. From all this a rational man must needs conclude that so immense a means to so great an end could not have been provided merely for the human race on a single earth. What would this be for a Divine that is infinite, to which thousands and even myriads of earths, all of them full of inhabitants, would be little and scarcely anything? There are spirits whose sole pursuit is the acquisition of knowledges, because their delight is in this alone; and for this reason they are permitted to wander about, and even to pass out of our solar system into others, in acquiring knowledge. These spirits, who are from the planet Mercury, have told me that there are earths with men upon them not only in this solar system but also beyond it in the starry heaven in immense numbers. It was calculated that with a million earths in the universe, and on each earth three hundred millions of men, and two hundred generations in six thousand years, and a space of three cubic ells allowed to each man or spirit, the total number of so many men or spirits would not fill the space of this earth, and scarcely more than the space of one of the satellites about one of the planets—a space in the universe so small as to be almost invisible, since a satellite can scarcely be seen by the naked eye. What is this for the Creator of the universe, to whom it would not be sufficient if the whole universe were filled, since he is infinite? I have talked with angels about this, and they said that they had a similar idea of the fewness of the human race compared with the infinity of the Creator, although their thought is from states, not from spaces, and that in their thought earths amounting to as many myriads as could possibly be conceived of would still be nothing at all to the Lord. [Earths in the Universe n. 2-4, 6, and 126.2]


The earths in the universe, with their inhabitants, and the spirits and angels from them, are treated of in the above mentioned work. What is there related has been revealed and shown to me to the intent that it may be known that the heaven of the Lord is immense, and that it is all from the human race; also that our Lord is everywhere acknowledged as the God of heaven and earth.


418. Again, the immensity of the heaven of the Lord is shown in this, that heaven in its entire complex reflects a single man, and corresponds to all things and each thing in man, and that this correspondence can never be filled out, since it is a correspondence not only with each of the members, organs, and viscera of the body in general, but also with all and each of the little viscera and little organs contained in these in every minutest particular, and even with each vessel and fiber; and not only with these but also with the organic substances that receive interiorly the influx of heaven, from which come man’s interior activities that are serviceable to the operations of his mind; since everything that exists interiorly in man exists in forms which are substances, for anything that does not exist in a substance as its subject is nothing. There is a correspondence of all these things with heaven, as can be seen from the chapter treating of the correspondence of all things of heaven with all things of man (n. 87-102). This correspondence can never be filled out because the more numerous the angelic affiliations are that correspond to each member the more perfect heaven becomes; for every perfection in the heavens increases with increase of number; and this for the reason that all there have the same end, and look with one accord to that end. That end is the common good; and when that reigns there is, from the common good, good to each individual, and from the good of each individual there is good to the whole community. This is so for the reason that the Lord turns all in heaven to himself (see above, n. 123), and thereby makes them to be one in himself. That the unanimity and concord of many, especially from such an origin and held together by such a bond, produces perfection, everyone with a reason at all enlightened can see clearly.


419. I have also been permitted to see the extent of the inhabited and also of the uninhabited heaven; and the extent of the uninhabited heaven was seen to be so great that it could not be filled to eternity even if there were many myriads of earths, and as great a multitude of men on each earth as on ours. (On this also see the treatise Earths in the Universe, n. 168.)


420. That heaven is not immense, but is of limited extent, is a conclusion that some have derived from certain passages in the Word understood according to the sense of its letter; for example, where it is said that only the poor are received into heaven, or only the elect, or only those within the church, and not those outside of it, or only those for whom the Lord intercedes; that heaven is closed when it is filled, and that this time is predetermined. But such are unaware that heaven is never closed, and that there is no time predetermined, or any limit of number; and that those are called the “elect” who are in a life of good and truth;254 and those are called “poor” who are lacking in knowledges of good and truth and yet desire them; and such from that desire are also called hungry.255 Those that have conceived an idea of the small extent of heaven from the Word not understood believe it to be in one place, where all are gathered together; when, in fact, heaven consists of innumerable societies (see above, n. 41-50). Such also have no other idea than that heaven is granted to everyone from mercy apart from means, and thus that there is admission and reception from mere favor; and they fail to understand that the Lord from mercy leads everyone who accepts him, and that he accepts him who lives in accordance with the laws of divine order, which are the precepts of love and of faith, and that the mercy that is meant is to be thus led by the Lord from infancy to the last period of life in the world and afterwards to eternity. Let them know, therefore, that every man is born for heaven, and that he is received that receives heaven in himself in the world, and he that does not receive it is shut out.