(ML) - Wisdom's Delight in Marriage Love: Followed by Insanity’s Pleasure in Promiscuous Love

ML 183

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183. The second Memorable Relation:
Seen by me in the eastern quarter was a grove of palm trees and laurels arranged in spiral gyres. I approached it, and entering, walked on its paths which wound around in several spirals. At the end of the windings, I saw a garden which formed the center of the grove. Separating the two was a small bridge, and on it, a gate on the grove side and another on the garden side. I drew near, and the gates were opened by a guard. To my question, "What is the name of this garden?" he answered, "Adramandoni," which means the delight of conjugial love. I entered in, and lo, I saw olive trees, and from tree to tree vines hanging in festoons, while under the trees and between them were bushes in flower-beds.* In the middle of the garden was a grassy circle on which husbands and wives and young men and maidens were sitting in pairs; and on a raised ground in the center of the circle was a small fountain leaping high by reason of the force of its stream. When close to the circle, I saw two angels in purple and scarlet speaking with those who were sitting on the grass. They were speaking about the origin of conjugial love and about its delights. Because their speech concerned this love, there was eager attention and complete acceptance, and this produced an exaltation in the discourse of the angels as from the fire of love.
[2] From their speech, I gathered the following summary: They spoke first of the difficulty in investigating and perceiving the origin of conjugial love, inasmuch as its origin is Divine-celestial, being Divine Love, Divine Wisdom, and Divine Use. These three proceed from the Lord as one, and hence inflow as one into the souls of men and through their souls into their minds and into the interior affections and thoughts there. Through these they flow into the desires next to the body, and from these through the breast into the genital region. There all the derivatives from the first origin are present simultaneously, and, together with the successives, make conjugial love.
After this, the angels said, "Let us have an exchange of speech by questions and answers; for when a subject is taken in solely from hearing, the perception of that subject does indeed flow in, but unless the hearer think of it from himself and ask questions, it does not remain."
[3] Some among that conjugial gathering then said to the angels, "We have heard that the origin of conjugial love is Divine-celestial because it is from influx from the Lord into men's souls; and that, being from the Lord, it is love, wisdom, and use, these being the three essentials which together make the one Divine essence, and nothing can proceed from Him and flow into man's inmost which is called his soul save what is of the Divine essence; also that, in their descent into the body, these three essentials are changed into things analogous and correspondential. Therefore, we now ask you first, What is meant by the third essential--the proceeding Divine which is called use?"
The angels replied: "Without use, love and wisdom are merely abstract ideas of thought, and after some tarrying in the mind, these pass away like the wind; but in use, the two are brought together and become a one which is called real. Love, being the activity of life, cannot rest unless it is doing something; nor can wisdom exist and subsist except when doing something from love and with it; and doing is use. Therefore we define use as the doing of good from love by means of wisdom. Use is good itself. [4] Since these three, love, wisdom, and use, flow into the souls of men, it can be evident whence comes the saying that all good is from God; for every deed done from love by means of wisdom is called good, and use is also a deed. What is love without wisdom but something fatuous? and, without use, what is love together with wisdom but a state of the mind? But with use, love and wisdom not only make the man, they are the man. Indeed, and this perhaps will astonish you, they propagate man; for in man's seed is his soul in perfect human form, covered over with substances from the purest things of nature, from which, in the mother's womb, is formed a body. This use is the supreme and ultimate use of Divine Love by means of Divine Wisdom."
[5] Finally the angels said: "The conclusion then must be that in its origin all fructification, all propagation, and all prolification is from the influx of love, wisdom, and use from the Lord---from immediate influx from the Lord into the souls of men, from mediate influx into the souls of animals, and from influx yet more mediate into the inmost parts of plants; and all are effected in ultimates from firsts. That fructifications, propagations, and prolifications are continuations of creation is evident; for creation can come from no other source than Divine Love by means of Divine wisdom in Divine Use. Therefore, all things in the universe are procreated and formed from use, in use, and for use."
[6] After this, those sitting on the grassy couches asked the angels, "Whence are the delights of conjugial love, which are innumerable and ineffable?" The angels answered: "They are from the uses of love and wisdom. This can be seen from the fact, that so far as one loves to be wise for the sake of genuine use he is in the vein and potency of conjugial love, and so far as he is in these two he is in its delights. It is use that does this; for when love acts by means of wisdom,** the two are in mutual delight, and they sport together like little children, as it were. Then, as they come to adolescence, they join together productively, this being done as though by betrothals, nuptials, marriages, and propagations, and this continually and with variety, to all eternity. This is what takes place between love and wisdom, inwardly present in use. In their beginnings, however, these delights are imperceptible, but by degrees as they descend therefrom and enter the body they become more and more perceptible. From the soul they enter by degrees into the interiors of man's mind, from these into its exteriors, thence into his breast, and from this into the genital region. [7] The heavenly nuptial sports in the soul are not in the least perceived by man; but from there they insinuate themselves into the interiors of the mind, under the appearance of peace and innocence, and into the exteriors of the mind under the appearance of blessedness, happiness, and delight. In the breast, they are present under the appearance of the delights of inmost friendship, and in the genital region from continuous influx from the soul itself, together with the actual sensation of conjugial love, as the delight of delights. In the soul, these nuptial sports of love and wisdom in use are persistent in their proceeding towards the breast, and in that breast they present themselves sensibly under an infinite variety of delights. Then, by reason of the marvelous communication of the breast with the genital region, in the latter these delights become the delights of conjugial love--delights which are exalted above all delights in heaven and in the world. This is because the use of conjugial love is the most excellent of all uses, for thence is the procreation of the human race, and from the human race, the angelic heaven."
[8] To this, the angels added: "Those who are not in the love of becoming wise from the Lord for the sake of use, know nothing of the variety of the innumerable delights of love truly conjugial; for with those who do not love to become wise from genuine truths but love to be insane from falsities, and by means of this insanity do evil uses from some love, the way to the soul is closed. Hence the heavenly nuptial sports of love and wisdom in the soul, being more and more intercepted, cease, and with them conjugial love, with its vein, its potency, and its delights."
Thereupon the hearers said that they perceived that conjugial love is according to the love of becoming wise from the Lord for the sake of use. The angels replied that it was so. And then, upon the heads of some of the audience appeared wreaths of flowers, and they asked, "Why is this?" The angels said, "Because they have understood more profoundly." They then left the garden with these men in their midst.
* The Latin is floribus (in flowers). The translation is based on the assumption that this is a misprint for floretis.
** Reading quia quando amor agit per sapientiam inter se deliantur for quia amor per sapientiam, etc.


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