(AC) - A Disclosure of the Hidden Treasures of Heaven Contained in the Holy Scripture or Word of the Lord, Together with Amazing Things Seen in the World of Spirits and in the Heaven of Angels

AC 10429

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10429. And behold it is a stiff-necked people. That this signifies that they do not receive influx from the Lord, is evident from the signification of "stiff-necked," as being not to receive influx; for by the "neck" [cervix and collum] is signified the conjunction and communication of things higher and lower, thus influx (see n. 3542, 3603, 3695, 3725, 5320, 5328, 5926, 6033, 8079, 9913, 9914), and by "stiff" is signified that which resists and refuses, thus that which does not receive. This people is so called because they were in external things without what is internal; and they who are such, refuse all influx out of heaven or from the Lord, for influx comes through what is internal into what is external. Therefore when the internal is closed, there is not any reception of the Divine in the external, for only that is received which flows in from the world, thus only what is worldly, bodily, and earthly. Moreover, in the other life, when such persons are seen in the light of heaven, there appear as it were grates of teeth, or as it were something hairy, or as it were a bony substance without life, instead of a head and face; for the face corresponds to those things which are of the internal man, and the body to those things which are of the external man, and the neck to the conjunction of these.
[2] It shall here be briefly explained what is meant by being in external things without what is internal, as is said of that nation. Every man has an internal and an external, for the internal is his thought and his will, and the external is his speech and his action; but the internal with the good differs very much from the internal with the evil. Each has an internal which is called the internal man, and an external which is called the external man; the internal man being formed according to the image of heaven; but the external man according to the image of the world (n. 9279). With those who are in the good of love and in the truths of faith, the internal man is open, and by means of it they are in heaven; but with those who are in evils and in the consequent falsities, the internal man is closed, and by means of the external they are in the world only. These are they of whom it is said that they are in external things without what is internal.
[3] These indeed also have interiors, but the interiors with them are the interiors of their external man which is in the world, and not the interiors of the internal man which is in heaven. These interiors (namely, those of the external man when the internal is closed), are evil, nay, filthy, for such persons think solely of the world and of themselves, and wish for those things only which are of the world and of self; and think nothing at all about heaven and the Lord, nor do they wish for them. From this it can be seen what is meant by being in external things without what is internal.
[4] As such was the nature of the Israelitish nation, therefore when they were in a holy external their interiors were closed, because these were loathsome and unclean, that is, were full of the love of self and of the world; thus of contempt for others in comparison with themselves, of hatred against all who offended them, of ferociousness against them, and of cruelty, avarice, rapine, and other like things. That this nation was of such a character is very evident from the song of Moses in Deuteronomy (32:15-43); where it is described by the command of Jehovah; and also from Jeremiah throughout; and lastly from the Lord Himself in the Gospels.


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