540. Almost all who come into the other life are ignorant of the nature of heavenly happiness and bliss, because they know not the nature and quality of inward joy. They form a conception of it merely from the delights and joys of the body and the world. What they are ignorant of they suppose to be nothing, the truth being that bodily and worldly joys are relatively non-existent and foul. In order therefore that those who are well disposed may learn and may know what heavenly joy is, they are taken in the first place to paradises that surpass every conception of the imagination (concerning which, of the Lord's Divine mercy hereafter), and they suppose that they have arrived in the paradise of heaven; but they are taught that this is not true heavenly happiness, and are therefore permitted to experience interior states of joy which are perceptible to their inmost being. They are then transported into a state of peace, even to their inmost being, and they confess that nothing of it is at all expressible or conceivable. And finally they are introduced into a state of innocence, also to their inmost feeling. In this way are they permitted to learn the nature of true spiritual and celestial good.