58. III. Where their habitations in the spiritual world have hitherto been. It was said above (n. 48), that all the nations and peoples in the spiritual world were seen to be as follows: collected in the middle appeared those who are called the Reformed; around this middle, those of the Papal religion; the Mohammedans, beyond them; and lastly the various Gentiles. Hence it may appear that the Papists formed the nearest circumference around the Reformed in the center. The reason of this is that they who are in the light of truth from the Word are in the center, and they who are in the light of truth from the Word are also in the light of heaven, for the light of heaven is from the Divine truth, and the Word is that in which this is. That the light of heaven is from the Divine truth, may be seen in the work on Heaven and Hell (n. 126-140); and that it is the Divine truth (n. 303-310), Light, moreover, proceeds from the center towards the circumferences, and illuminates. Hence it is that the Papists proximately surround the center, for they have the Word, and it is also read by those of the ecclesiastical order, though not by the people. This is the reason why the Papal nation in the spiritual world have obtained habitations around those who are in the light of truth from the Word. Their manner of dwelling, before their habitations were utterly destroyed, and made into a desert, shall now be told. The greatest part of them dwelt in the south and in the west; but some in the north and in the east. In the south dwelt those who had excelled others in talent in the world, and had confirmed themselves in their own religion. Great numbers of the nobility and the rich also dwelt there. They did not dwell upon the earth there, but under it, from dread of robbers, guards being placed at the entrances. In that quarter, moreover, there was a great city, extending nearly from east to west, and somewhat into the west, situated very near the center where the Reformed were. Myriads of men or spirits tarried in that city. It was full of temples and monasteries. The ecclesiastics also carried into it all precious things which they were enabled by their various artifices to scrape together, and they hid them in its cells and subterranean crypts, which were so elaborately formed, that no one besides themselves could enter, for they were disposed around in the form of a labyrinth. On the treasures there amassed, in the full confidence that they could never be destroyed, they had set their hearts. When I saw those crypts I was amazed at the art displayed in constructing them, and enlarging them without end. The most of those who call themselves of the society of Jesus were there, and cultivated amicable relations with the rich who dwelt round about. Towards the east in that quarter was the council where they consulted on the enlargement of their dominion, and on the means of keeping the people in blind obedience (see above, n. 56). This concerning their habitations in the southern quarter. In the north, dwelt those who less excelled in ability, and had less confirmed themselves in their own religion, because they were in an obscure faculty of discerning and thence in blind faith. The multitude was not so great there as in the south. Most of them were in a great city extending lengthwise from the angle of the east to the west, and also a little into the west. It also was full of temples and monasteries. On its outmost side which was near the east there were many of various religions, and also some of the Reformed. A few places, moreover, beyond the city in that quarter, were occupied by the Papists. In the east dwelt those who had been in the greatest delight of ruling in the world, and at the same time in somewhat of natural light. They appeared there on mountains, but only in the quarter which faces the north; there were none in the other part which faces the south. In the angle towards the north, there was a mountain, on the top of which they had placed a certain one of unsound mind, whom, by communications of the thoughts, which are known in the spiritual, but unknown in the natural world, they were enabled to inspire to command anything they chose. And they gave out that he was the very God of heaven, appearing under a human form, and thus paid him Divine worship. They did this, because the people were desirous of receding from their idolatrous worship, wherefore, they devised it as a means of keeping them in obedience. That mountain is meant in Isaiah (14:13) by "the mountain of assembly in the sides of the north," and those on the mountains are there meant by "Lucifer" (ver. 12); for such of the Babylonish crew as dwelt in the east, were in greater light than others, which light also, they had prepared for themselves by artifice. There also appeared some who were building a tower: which should reach even to heaven where the angels are, but this was only representative of their machinations; for machinations are presented in the spiritual world, before the eyes of those who stand at a distance, by many things which yet do not exist actually with those who are in the machinations: this is a common thing there. By this appearance it was given me to know what was signified by:
The tower whose head should be in heaven, whence the place was called Babel (Gen. 11:1-10).
These things are concerning their habitations in the east. In the west, in front, dwelt those of that religion who lived in the dark ages, for the most part underground, one posterity beneath another. The whole tract in front which looked to the north, was, as it were, excavated, and filled with monasteries. The entrances to them lay through caverns covered by roofs, through which they went out and in, They rarely spoke with those who lived in the following ages, being of a different disposition, and not so malicious; for as, in their times, there was no contention with the Reformed, there was there fore less of the craft and malice from hatred and revenge. In the western quarter beyond that tract, were many mountains, on which dwelt the wickedest of that nation, who in heart denied the Divine and yet orally professed their belief in Him, and adored Him with gestures more devoutly than others. They who were there, devised nefarious arts to keep the common people under the yoke of their sway, and also to force others to submit to that yoke: these arts it is not allowed to describe, they are so heinous. In general they are such as are mentioned in the work on Heaven and Hell (n. 580), The mountains on which they dwelt, are meant in the Apocalypse by "the seven mountains," and those who were there are described by the woman sitting upon the scarlet beast:
I saw a woman sitting upon a scarlet beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads, and ten horns: she had on the forehead a name written, mystery, Babylon the great, mother of the whoredoms and abominations of the earth: the seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth (Apoc. 17:3, 5, 9).
By "a woman" in the internal sense, is meant the church, here in the opposite sense, a profane religion; by "the scarlet beast," the profanation of celestial love; by "the seven mountains," the profane lobe of ruling. These are concerning their habitations in the west. The reason why they dwell distinct according to quarters is, because all in the spiritual world are carried into that quarter, and into that part of it, which corresponds to their affections and loves, and no one to any other place; concerning which see the work on Heaven and Hell, where it treats of the four quarters of heaven (n. 141-153). In general, all the consultations of the Babylonish race tend to this, that they may dominate, not only over heaven, but over the whole earth, and thus that they may possess heaven and earth, obtaining each by means of the other, To effect this, they continually devise and batch new statutes and new doctrinals. They make the same endeavor also in the other life as they made in the world, for every one after death is such as he was in the world, especially as to his religion. It was granted me to hear certain of the primates consulting about a doctrine, which was to be a rule for the people: it consisted of many articles, but they all tended to this; that they might obtain dominion over the heavens, and the earth, and that they might have all power for themselves, and the Lord none. These doctrinals were after. wards read before the bystanders, and thereupon a voice was heard from heaven, declaring, that they were dictated from the deepest hell, though the hearers did not know it; which was further confirmed by this; that a crowd of devils from that hell, of the blackest and direst appearance, ascended, and tore those doctrinals from them, not with their hands, but with their teeth, and carried them down to their hell. The people who saw it were astounded.