(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 5084

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5084. Of the house of the prince of the guards. That this signifies by those things which are primary for interpretation, is evident from the signification of the "prince of the guards," as being what is primary for interpretation (n. 4790, 4966). Here therefore the signification is that the sensuous things of both kinds were rejected by the things primary for interpretation, namely those which are of the Word as to the internal sense; and these sensuous things are said to be rejected when they have no faith in such things; for sensuous things and those which by their means enter immediately into the thought, are fallacious, and all the fallacies which prevail in man are from this source. It is from these that few believe the truths of faith, and that the natural man is opposed to the spiritual, that is, the external man to the internal; and therefore if the natural or external man begins to rule over the spiritual or internal man, the things of faith are no longer believed; for fallacies overshadow and cupidities suffocate them.
[2] As few know what the fallacies of the senses are, and few believe that they induce so great a shade on rational things, and most of all on the spiritual things of faith, even so as to extinguish them, especially when the man is at the same time in the delight of the cupidities from the love of self and the love of the world, the subject may be illustrated by examples, showing first what are the fallacies of the senses which are merely natural, or in those things which are in nature, and then what are the fallacies of the senses in spiritual things. (1) It is a fallacy of merely natural sense, or that which is in nature, to believe that the sun revolves once each day around this earth, and also the sky with all the stars; and although it is said that it is incredible-because impossible-that so great an ocean of fire as is the sun, and not only the sun but also innumerable stars, should revolve around the earth once every day without any change of place relatively to one another, and although it is added that it may be seen from the planets that the earth performs a daily and annual motion by rotation and revolution, the planets also being earths, some of them with moons revolving around them, and making - as is known by observation - daily and annual motions like our earth; nevertheless with very many persons the fallacy of sense prevails, that it is as it appears to the eye.
[3] (2) It is a fallacy of merely natural sense, or that which is in nature, that there is only a single atmosphere, and that this is merely successively purer from one portion to another, and that where it ceases there is a vacuum. When only the external sensuous of man is consulted, it apprehends no otherwise. (3) It is a fallacy of merely natural sense, that from the first creation there has been impressed on seeds a property of growing up into trees and flowers, and of reproducing themselves, and that from this is the coming into existence and subsistence of all things. And if it is urged that it is not possible for anything to subsist unless it perpetually comes into existence, according to the law that subsistence is a perpetual coming into existence, and also that everything not connected with something prior to itself falls into nothing, still the sensuous of the body and the thought from this sensuous does not apprehend it, nor that each and all things subsist in the same way that they came into existence, by influx from the spiritual world, that is to say through the spiritual world from the Divine.
[4] (4) Hence it is a fallacy of merely natural sense that there are simple substances, which are monads and atoms; for whatever is within the range of the external sensuous, the natural man believes to be a simple substance, or else nothing. (5) It is a fallacy of merely natural sense that all things are of nature and from nature, and that there indeed is something in purer or interior nature which is not apprehended; but if it is said that within or above nature there is what is spiritual and celestial, this is rejected; and it is believed that if it is not natural, it is nothing. (6) It is a fallacy of sense that only the body lives, and that its life perishes when it dies. The sensuous does not at all apprehend that the internal man is in every particular of the external man, and that the internal man is within nature, and in the spiritual world; hence it does not believe, because it does not apprehend, that the internal man will live after death unless it is again clothed with the body (n. 5078, 5079).
[5] (7) Hence it is a fallacy of sense that man cannot live after death any more than the beasts, because these also have a life similar in many respects to that of man, man being only a more perfect animal. The sensuous, that is, the man who thinks and draws conclusions therefrom, does not apprehend that man is above the beasts and has a higher life, because he can think not only about the causes of things, but also about the Divine, and can by faith and love be conjoined with the Divine, and also receive influx therefrom and make it his own, thus that as there is reciprocity in man there is also reception, as is by no means the case with beasts.
[6] (8) It is a fallacy thence derived that the very living part of man, which is called the soul, is merely something ethereal, or flamy, which is dissipated when the man dies; and that it resides in the heart, or in the brain, or in some part of this, and from thence rules the body as if this were a machine. That the internal man is in every part of the external man, and that the eye does not see from itself, nor the ear hear from itself, but from the internal man, the sensuous man does not apprehend. (9) It is a fallacy of sense that light, and also heat, can come from no other source than the sun or elementary fire. That there is light in which is intelligence, and heat in which is heavenly love, and that all the angels are in this light and heat, the sensuous does not apprehend. (10) It is a fallacy of sense that man believes that he lives of himself, or that life has been imparted to him; for so it appears to the sensuous mind. That it is the Divine alone which has life of itself, and thus that there is only one life, and that the lives in the world are only recipient forms, the sensuous mind does not at all apprehend (see n. 1954, 2706, 2886-2889, 2893, 3001, 3318, 3337, 3338, 3484, 3742, 3743, 4151, 4249, 4318-4320, 4417, 4523, 4524, 4882).
[7] (11) The sensuous man believes from fallacy that adulteries are allowable; for from the sensuous he concludes that marriages are instituted merely in behalf of order for the sake of the education of the offspring; and that so long as this order is not destroyed, it is immaterial from whom the offspring comes; and also that what is of marriage differs from lasciviousness merely in its being allowed; thus also that it would not be contrary to order to marry more than one wife, if it were not forbidden by the Christian world from Holy Scripture. If they are told that there is a correspondence between the heavenly marriage and marriages on earth, and that no one can have in himself anything of marriage unless he is in spiritual truth and good, also that genuine marriage cannot possibly exist between a husband and several wives, and hence that marriages are in themselves holy, these things are rejected by the sensuous man as of no account. (12) It is a fallacy of sense that the Lord's kingdom, or heaven, resembles an earthly kingdom in respect that the joy and happiness there consist in one being greater than another, and hence having more glory than another; for the sensuous does not at all comprehend what is meant by the least being greatest, or the last first. If they are told that joy in heaven or to the angels consists in serving others by benefiting them, without any thought of merit or recompense, this strikes them as something sad. (13) It is a fallacy of sense that good works merit reward, and that to benefit anyone for the sake of self is a good work. (14) It is also a fallacy of sense that man is saved by faith alone, and that faith can exist in one who has no charity, and also that it is the faith, and not the life, that remains after death. In like manner in very many other instances. When therefore what is sensuous rules in man, the rational enlightened from the Divine sees nothing and is in thick darkness, and it is then believed that everything is rational which is concluded from what is sensuous.


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