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“ of sciences, because their knowledge of spiritual subjects 66 such as relate to heaven and the church was obtained “ from it : but this science, in consequence of its being per“ verted to idolatrous purposes, was, by the Divine Provi6 dence of the Lord, so obliterated and destroyed, that no
one saw a trace of it remaining : yet at this time it is again “ discovered by the Lord, in order to effect a conjunction of “ the members of the church with Him, and their consocia« tion with angels; these purposes are effected by the Word “ which consists entirely of correspondences.' The angels
were greatly rejoiced to hear, that it had pleased the “ Lord to reveal this great arcanum, which had lain so
deeply hidden for thousands of years; it was done, they “ said, with this view, that the Christian Church, w bich " is founded on the Word, and is now at its end, may again “ revive, and derive its spirit through heaven from the “ Lord. They inquired, whether it was discovered at this “ day by that science, what is signified by BAPTISM, and
what by the Ilory SUPPER, on the true meaning of 66 which such a variety of conjectures had been formed: " and I replied, that it was. III. I further said, that a “ revelation has been made by the Lord at this day con“ cerning the LIFE OF MEN A FTER DEATH, Ilow ! con
cerning life after death,' the angels replied, 'who does not " know that man lives after death?” They know it,' said I, “ (and they do not know it; they say that it is not the man 66 who then lives, but his soul, and that this lives as a spirit, 6 and the idea they cherish of spirit is as of wind, or æther; “ thus they insist that the man does not live till the day of “ the last judgment, and that then the corporeal parts, 66 which had been left behind in the world, though they may “ have been eaten up by worms, mice, and fish, will be “ again collected together, and again fitted and formed into
a body, and thus they will rise again as men.' What is " this !' the angels said, ' who does not know that man lives
“ as a man after death, with this difference alone, that he then “ lives a substantial man, and not a material man as before; " and that the substantial man is visible to the substantial,
just as the material man is to the material ; and they know
no one point of difference but in the greater perfection of “ their state.' IV. Then the angels asked, What do they " know on earth of our world, and of HEAVEN AND:
HELL?' 'Nothing at all,' I answered, 'but it has pleased “ the Lord to discover, at this day, the nature and quality 6 of the world in which angels and spirits live, thus the “ nature and quality both of heaven and hell; and also " that angels and spirits are in conjunction with men, “ with many other wonderful circumstances concerning “ them.' The angels rejoiced to hear that the Lord bad “ been pleased to reveal such things to mankind, that so “ they might no longer through ignorance live in doubt of " their own immortality. V. I further added, “The Lord " has been pleased at this day to reveal, that there is, be6 side the sun in our world, a sun in your's also, and that “ this sun is pure love, but the sun in our world is pure fire; “ hence that whatsoever proceedeth from your sun, because “ it is pure love, hath somewhat of life in it, but that whatso
ever proceedeth from our sun, because it is pure fire, has
nothing of life in it; and that in this consists the distinc" tion between spiRITUAL and NATURAL, a distinction “ hitherto unknown, but now revealed : thus also a disco. “ very is made of the source of that light which enlightens “ the human understanding with wisdom, and the source of " that heat which kindleth the human will with love. VI. “ It is further revealed, that there are three degrees of life, “ and consequently three heavens, and that the mind of
man is distinguished into the same degrees, and so man “ corresponds to the three heavens.' But did they not know “ this before?' the angels asked. They knew of a distinc6 tion of degrees,' I replied, 'in relation to more and less, but
“ nothing of their distinction in relation to prior and pos“ terior.' * VII. The angels then inquired whether any “ thing else had been revealed, “Much more,' I answered, " bas, concerning the Last JUDGMENT; concerning the “ LORD, that He is the God of heaven and earth; that God " is one both in person and essence, in whom is a divine
trinity, and that the Lord is that God; also concerning " the New Church that is to be established by Him, and “ concerning the doctrine of that church; concerning the
HOLINESS OF The Sacred SCRIPTURES ; that the APO
CALYPse also is revealed : and moreover concerning the “ INHABITANTS OF THE Planets; and the Earths in “ the universe; beside many memorable relations and won“ derful discoveries from the spiritual world, by which “ many particulars, pregnant with wisdom, have been re66 vealed from heaven.'
847. “Continuing the conversation, I afterwards acquaint« ed the angels, that the Lord had been pleased to make a “ revelation to the world on another subject : they asked, «On what?' I said, 'ON TRUE CONJUGIAL LOVE, and its « spiritual delights.' Who does not know,' the angels said, " that the delights of conjugial love exceed the delights of
Our author's doctrine of degrees, in relation to what is here called prior and posterior, is new and important; but at the same time, to a mind not accustomed to philosophical disquisitions, it may possibly seem of difficult apprehension. In other parts of his works he calls these degrees by the name of discrete degrees, and degrees of altitude, to distinguish them from degrees relative to more and less, which he terms continuous degrees, and degrees of latitude. His distinction may perhaps be best conceived from what he himself has said on the subject in his Tract on the Intercourse between the Soul and the body : his words are these :-“ Degrees of altitude, or discrete degrees, are like the generations and compositions of one thing from another, as for example of any nerve from its fibres, and of each fibre from its fibrils; or of any piece of wood, stone, or metal, from its parts, and of each particular part from its particles: But degrees of latitude, or continuous degrees, are like the increments and decrement of the same degree of altitude in respect to breadth, length, height, and depth, as of volumes of water, air, or æther, more and less."
56 all other loves ? and who cannot conceive that there must “ be some particular love into which all the blessings, satis“ factions, and delights, which it is in the power of the Lord “ to bestow, are collated, and that the receptacle of these, “ is true conjugial love, since it corresponds to the love of " the Lord and the church, and is capable of receiving and “ perceiving such blessings, satisfactions, and delights, in a
full and sensible manner?' I replied, Mankind on earth “ know nothing of all this, because they have not ap
proached the Lord, and therefore have not shunned the “ lusts of the flesh, and so could not be regenerated; for 6 true conjugial love is only from the Lord, and given to “ those who are regenerated by Him; and these also are " they who are received into the Lord's New Church, which " is meant in the Revelation by the New Jerusalem. To “ this I added, that I had a doubt whether men on earth at “ this day were disposed to believe, that conjugial love in “ itself is spiritual, thus grounded in religion, since they “ cherish only corporeal ideas about it; and of course will “ hardly be persuaded to believe, that it is such as the “ religion is, spiritual with such as are spiritual, natural “ with such as are natural, and merely carnal with adul.
818. “ The angels, on hearing the account of all these " discoveries made to mankind, were much rejoiced; but " when they saw that I was sorrowful, they asked me the cause of
my sorrow : I replied, “ Because these arcana at " this day revealed by the Lord are reputed on earth, not“ withstanding their superiority in excellence and dignity « above all the knowledges that have hitherto been publish" ed to the world, as things of no value.' The angels won“ dered at this, and requested the Lord's permission to look 6 down into the world; and they looked down, and lo! mere « darkness was therein. And they were told to write those
arcana on a paper, and let the paper down to carth, and
“ they would see a prodigy : they did so, and lo! the paper,
on which the arcana were written, was let down from “ heaven, and in its progress, whilst it was yet in the spi“ ritual world, it shone bright like a star, but in its passage “ into the natural world, the light disappeared, and as it fell “ it was entirely darkened. On being let down by the angels “ into the midst of an assembly consisting of learned clergy “ and laity, many of them were heard to mutter words to " this effect; What have we got here? Is it any thing, or “ nothing? What matters it whether we know these things “ or do not know them? Are they not mere embryos of “ the brain ?' And it appeared as if some took the paper “ and folded it, twisting and untwisting it with their fin
gers; and also as if some tore it in pieces, and were
desirous to tread it under foot; but they were prevented by “ the Lord from proceeding to such an enormity, and the “ angels were charged to take up the paper back again, 66 and secure it: because these circumstances affected the “ angels with sorrow, and they began to think with them“ selves how long this would continue, it was told them, ‘For
A TIME, AND TIMES, AND HALF A Time,' Rev. xii. 14.
819. “ After this I heard a hostile murmur from below, “ and at the same time these words, “Do MIRACLES AND
WILL BELIEVE :'* and I replied, "Are not the * We are very sensible that this objection to our author's mission, as unattested by miracles, has been and will be frequently urged against him by persons of a certain character, who are either not able, or not willing to admit of any higher evidence, and be convinced by any other proof, than that of outward signs and wonders. To such we would earnestly recommend to ponder well ou what our author says of such evidence, both here, and also in n. 501; and also on the reply which our blessed Lord made to those Jews, who sought a sign of him, Matt. xii. 39. They will then possibly be enabled to see, how little the real internal evidence of truth is connected with that arising from miracles; and that the surest test whereby to prove any doctrine, or mission, whether it be of God, is, to compare it with the revealed will of God, according to a right understanding of that will arising from the sincere and faithful practice of it. See John vii. 17.