271. EVILS AND FALSITIES ARE IN COMPLETE OPPOSITION TO GOODS AND TRUTHS, BECAUSE EVILS AND FALSITIES ARE DIABOLICAL AND INFERNAL, WHILE GOODS AND TRUTHS ARE DIVINE AND HEAVENLY.
That evil and good are opposites, also the falsity of evil and the truth of good, every one acknowledges when he hears it. Still those who are in evil do not feel, and therefore do not perceive, otherwise than that evil is good; for evil gives enjoyment to their senses, especially sight and hearing, and from that gives enjoyment also to their thoughts, and thus their perceptions. While, therefore, the evil acknowledge that evil and good are opposites, still, when they are in evil, they declare from their enjoyment of it that evil is good, and good evil. For example:-One who abuses his freedom to think and to do what is evil calls that freedom, while its opposite, namely, to think the good which in itself is good, he calls bondage; when, in fact, the latter is to be truly free, and the former to be in bondage. He who loves adulteries calls it freedom to commit adultery, but not to be allowed to commit adultery he calls bondage; for in lasciviousness he has a sense of enjoyment, but of the contrary in chastity. He who is in the love of ruling from love of self feels in that love an enjoyment of life surpassing other enjoyments of every kind; consequently, everything belonging to that love he calls good, and everything contrary to it he declares to be evil; when yet the reverse is true. It is the same with every other evil. While every one, therefore, acknowledges that evil and good are opposites, those who are in evils cherish a reverse conception of such opposition, and only those who are in good have a right conception of it. No one so long as he is in evil can see good, but he who is in good can see evil. Evil is below as in a cave, good is above as on a mountain.