(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 2363

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2363. Let me I pray bring them out unto you. That this signifies blessedness therefrom, that is, from the affections of good and of truth, is evident from the sense of these words when they are predicated of the affections which are here meant by the "daughters." As regards the thing itself, namely, that there is blessedness and happiness solely in the affection of good and of truth, it is a matter profoundly unknown to all who are in evil and its delight. To them the blessedness in the affection of good and of truth appears either as something that is nonexistent, or as something that is sad; while to some it appears as what is painful, and even deadly. This is the case with the genii and the spirits of hell, who think and believe that if the delight of the love of self and of the world, consequently of the evils therein originating, were taken away from them, nothing of life could remain to them; and when they are shown that true life with its blessedness and happiness then begins, they feel a kind of sadness from the loss of their own delight; and when they are brought among those who are in such a life, pain and torture seize upon them; and besides this, they then begin to feel in themselves something that is cadaverous and direfully infernal; so that they call heaven (which is the abode of this blessedness and happiness) their hell, and flee away, in order so far as possible to remove and hide themselves from the Lord's face.
[2] That nevertheless all blessedness and happiness consist in the affection of the good which is of love and charity, and also of the truth which is of faith insofar as the latter leads to the former, can be seen from the fact that heaven (that is, angelic life) consists in this blessedness, and that it affects from the inmosts those who receive it, because it flows in through the inmosts from the Lord (see n. 540, 541, 545). Then also do wisdom and intelligence enter into and fill the inmost recesses of the mind, and kindle the good with heavenly flame, and the truth with heavenly light; and this with a perception of blessedness and happiness of which no description can be given except that they are unutterable. They who are in this state perceive how dead, how sad, and how lamentable is the life of those who are in the evils of the love of self and of the world.
[3] In order to obtain a clear idea of the nature of this life of the love of self and of the world (or what is the same, of a life of pride, avarice, envy, hatred, revenge, unmercifulness, adultery), let any person of talent make for himself an impersonation of some one of these evils; or if he can, let him paint it before his eyes in accordance with the ideas he is able to conceive of it from experience, knowledge, and reason; and he will then see, in proportion to the energy of his description or picture, how horrible these evils are, and that they are diabolical forms, in which there is nothing human. Forms such as these do all those become after death who perceive the delight of their life in such evils, and the greater is their delight in them, the more horrible are their own forms.
[4] On the other hand, let the same person delineate for himself an impersonation of love and charity, or let him express it before his eyes under some form; and then in proportion to his power of description or portrayal he will see that the form is angelic, full of bliss and beauty, and pervaded within with what is heavenly and Divine. Can anyone believe that these two forms can abide together? or that the diabolical form can be put off and be transmuted into the form of charity? and this by a faith to which the life is contrary? For after death everyone's life remains; or what is the same, his affection; and in accordance with this is then all his thought, and consequently his faith, which thus manifests itself as it had been at heart.


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