(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 5128

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5128. When thou wast his butler. That this signifies as is usual with sensuous things of this kind, is evident from the signification of a "butler," as being sensuous things, or that portion of them which is subject to the intellectual part (see n. 5077, 5082); its being "as is usual" with them is signified by "when thou wast." That sensuous things ought to be subject and subordinate to rational things has already been treated of in the preceding pages; and as this subjection and subordination is here treated of in the internal sense, it still remains to show how the case is in regard to it.
[2] The man in whom sensuous things are in subjection is called rational, but the man in whom they are not in subjection is called sensuous; but whether a man is rational or sensuous can scarcely be discerned by others; but it can be discerned by himself if he explores his interiors, that is, his will and his thought. Whether a man is sensuous or rational cannot be known by others from his speech or from his actions; for the life of the thought which is in the speech, and the life of the will which is in the actions, do not appear to any bodily sense. Only the sound is heard and the gesture seen together with their affection, and it is not distinguished whether the affection is pretended or real; but in the other life this is distinctly perceived by those who are in good, both as to what is in the speech and what is in the actions; thus what is the quality of the life, and also from what source the life therein is derived. In this world also there are some signs from which it can in some measure be inferred whether sensuous things are subject to the rational, or the rational to sensuous things, or what is the same, whether a man is rational or merely sensuous. The signs are these. If it is observed that a man is in principles of falsity, and does not suffer himself to be enlightened, but entirely rejects truths, and without reason obstinately defends falsities, this is a sign that he is a sensuous man, and not a rational, the rational being closed in him, so that it does not admit the light of heaven.
[3] Still more sensuous are those who are in the persuasion of falsity, because the persuasion of falsity totally closes the rational. It is one thing to be in principles of falsity, and another to be in the persuasion of falsity. They who are in the persuasion of falsity have some light in their natural, but it is a light like that of winter. In the other life this light appears with them white like snow; but as soon as the heavenly light falls into it, it is darkened, and becomes dark like night in accordance with the degree and quality of the persuasion. This is also evident with them while they live in the world, for they cannot then see anything whatever of truth; nay, in consequence of the obscure or benighted influence of their falsity, truths to them are as things of naught, and they also ridicule them. To the simple such persons sometimes appear as if they were rational; for by means of that snowy wintry light they can through reasonings so dexterously confirm falsities, that these appear like truths. In such persuasion are many of the learned, more than the rest of mankind; for they have confirmed falsities in themselves by syllogistic and philosophical reasonings, and finally by many acquired knowledges. Among the ancients such men were called serpents of the tree of knowledge (see n. 195-197); but at this day they may be called interior sensuous men who have no rational.
[4] The principal sign whether a man is merely sensuous or is rational, is from his life; not such as appears in his speech and his works, but such as it is within these; for the life of the speech is from the thought, and the life of the works is from the will, and that of both is from the intention or end. Such therefore as is the intention or end within the speech and the works, such is the life; for speech without interior life is mere sound, and works without interior life are mere movements. This is the life which is meant when it is said that "the life remains after death." If a man is rational, he speaks from thinking well, and acts from willing well, that is, he speaks from faith and acts from charity; but if a man is not rational, he may then indeed begin to act, and also to speak, as a rational man; but still there is nothing of life from the rational in him; for a life of evil closes up every way or communication with the rational, and causes the man to be merely natural and sensuous.
[5] There are two things which not only close up the way of communication, but even deprive a man of the capacity of ever becoming rational - deceit and profanation. Deceit is like a subtle poison which infects the interiors, and profanation mixes falsities with truths and evils with goods: through these two the rational wholly perishes. There are in every man gods and truths from the Lord stored up from infancy, which in the Word are called "remains" (see n. 468, 530, 560, 561, 661, 1050, 1738, 1906, 2284); these remains are infected by deceit, and are mixed up by profanation (what profanation is may be seen above, n. 593, 1008, 1010, 1059, 1327, 1328, 2051, 2426, 3398, 3402, 3489, 3898, 4289, 4601). From these signs it may in some measure be known who is a rational, and who a sensuous man.
[6] When sensuous things are subject to the rational, then the sensuous things from which man's first imagination is formed, are enlightened by the light which comes through heaven from the Lord, and are also disposed into order so as to receive the light and correspond. When they are in this state, sensuous things no longer stand in the way of truths being acknowledged and seen, those which disagree being instantly removed, and those which agree being accepted. Those which agree are then as it were in the center, and those which disagree are in the circumference; those which are in the center are as it were lifted up toward heaven, and those which are in the circumference as it were hang downward. Those which are in the center receive light through the rational, and when they are presented to view in the other life they are seen as little stars which gleam and shed light round about even to the circumference, with a gradual diminution. Into such a form are natural and sensuous things disposed when the rational has dominion, and sensuous things are in subjection. This takes place while the man is being regenerated, and thereby he is in a state of seeing and acknowledging truths in their full extent. But when the rational is subject to sensuous things, the contrary comes to pass; for falsities are in the middle, or in the center, and truths are in the circumference. The things which are in the center are in a certain light, but it is a fatuous light, or such as arises from a coal fire, into which flows a light on all sides from hell. This is the light which is called darkness, for as soon as any light from heaven flows into it, it is turned into darkness.


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