61. Destruction was effected after visitation, for visitation always precedes. The act of exploring what the men are, and moreover the separation of the good from the evil, is visitation; and the good are then removed, and the evil are left behind. This having been done, there were great earthquakes, from which they perceived that the Last Judgment was at hand, and trembling seized them all. Then those who dwelt in the southern quarter, and especially in the great city there (see n. 58), were seen running to and fro, some with the intention of betaking themselves to flight, some of hiding themselves in the crypts, others of hiding in the cells and caves where their treasures were, out of which others again carried anything they could lay their hands on. But after the earthquakes there burst up an ebullition from below, which overturned everything in the city and in the region round it. After this ebullition came a vehement wind from the east which laid bare, shook, and overthrew everything to its foundations, and then all who were there were led forth, from every part, and from all their hiding-places, and cast into a sea of black waters: those who were cast into it, were many myriads. Afterwards from that whole region a smoke ascended, as after a conflagration, and finally a thick dust, which was borne by the east wind to the sea, and strewn over it; for their treasures were turned into dust, with all those things they had called holy because they possessed them. This dust was strewn over the sea, because such dust signifies what is damned. At last there was seen as it were a blackness flying over that whole region, which when it was viewed narrowly appeared like a dragon; a sign that the whole of that great city and region was become a desert, This was seen, because "dragons" signify the falsities of such a religion, and "the abode of dragons" signifies the desert after their overthrow; as in Jeremiah (9:11; x. 22; 49:33; Mal. 1:3) It was also seen that some had as it were a millstone around the left arm, which was a representative of their having confirmed their abominable dogmas from the Word; a millstone signifies such things: hence it was plain what these words signify in the Apocalypse:
The angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall no more be found (Apoc. 18:21).
But they who were in the council, which also was in that region, but nearer to the east, in which they were consulting on the modes of enlarging their dominion, and of keeping the people in ignorance, and thence in blind obedience (see above, n. 58), were not cast into that black sea, but into a gulf which opened itself long and deep beneath and around them. Thus was the Last Judgment accomplished upon the Babylonians in the southern quarter. But the Last Judgment upon those in front in the western quarter, and upon those in the northern quarter, where the other great city stood, was thus effected. After great earthquakes, which rent everything in those quarters to the very foundations-these are the earthquakes which are meant in the Word (Matt. 24:7; Luke 21:11; likewise Apoc. 6:12; 8:5; 11:13; 16:18); and in the prophecies of the Old Testament, and not any earthquakes in this world-an east wind went forth from the south through the west into the north, and laid bare that whole region first that part of it in front in the western quarter, where the people of the dark ages dwelt underground, and afterwards the great city, which extended from that quarter even through the north to the east, and from these regions thus laid bare, all things were exposed to view. But because there were not such great riches there, no ebullition, and no sulphurous fire consuming treasures were seen, but only overturn and destruction, and at length exhalation of the whole into smoke; for the east wind went forth, blowing to and fro; it overthrew and destroyed and also swept away. The monks and common people were led forth to the number of many myriads; some were cast into the black sea, on that side of it which faces the west; some into the great southern gulf, mentioned above; some into the western gulf, and some into the hells of the Gentiles, for a part of those who lived in the dark ages were idolaters like the Gentiles, A smoke also was seen to ascend from that region, and to proceed as far as the sea; over which it hovered, depositing a black crust there; for that part of the sea into which they were cast, was encrusted over with the dust and smoke, into which their dwellings and their riches were reduced; wherefore that sea has no longer a visible existence, but in its place is seen, as it were a black soil, under which is their hell, The Last Judgment upon those who dwelt upon the mountains in the eastern quarter (see n. 58), was thus accomplished. Their mountains were seen to subside into the deep, and all those who were upon them to be swallowed up; and he whom they had placed upon one of the mountains, and whom they proclaimed to be god, was seen to become first black, then fiery, and with them to be cast headlong into hell. For the monks of the various orders who were upon those mountains, said that he was God and that they were Christ, and wherever they went, they took with them the abominable persuasion that themselves were Christ. Finally, judgment was effected upon those who dwelt more remotely in the western quarter, upon the mountains there, and who are meant by "the woman sitting upon the scarlet beast who had seven heads which are seven mountains," of whom also something is related above (n. 58). Their mountains also were seen, some were open in the middle, where an immense chasm was made and whirled about in a spiral, into which those on the mountains were cast. Other mountains were torn up by their foundations and turned upside down, so that the summit became the base; those who were thence in the plains were inundated as with a deluge, and covered over, and those who were among them from other quarters were cast into gulfs. But the things now related are only a small part of all I saw; more will be given in the Explanation of the Apocalypse. They were effected and accomplished in the beginning of the year 1757. As regards the gulfs into which all were cast, except those who were cast into the black sea, they are many. Four of them were disclosed to me; one great gulf in the southern quarter, towards the east there; another in the western quarter, towards the south; a third in the western quarter, towards the north there; a fourth still further in the angle between the west and the north: the gulfs and the sea are their hells. These were seen, but in addition to these there are many more, which were not seen; for the hells of the Babylonish people are distinct according to the various profanations of spiritual things, which are of the good and truth of the church.