(TCR) - True Christian Religion: Containing the Whole Theology of the New Church Predicted by the Lord in Daniel 7:13-14 and Revelation 21:1-2

TCR 387

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387. Third Memorable Relation:
When these two angels were out of sight, I saw a garden on the right, in which there were olive trees, fig trees, laurels, and palms, arranged in order in accord with their correspondences. I looked thitherward, and among the trees I saw angels and spirits walking and talking; and one angelic spirit looked at me. Those are called angelic spirits who are being prepared in the world of spirits for heaven. This spirit came to me from the garden and said, "Come with me into our paradise, you shall hear and see wonderful things."
I went with him and he said to me, "These whom you see," for there were many others, "are all in the love of truth, and from that in the light of wisdom. And there is a palace here, which we call the Temple of Wisdom; but no one can see it who believes himself to be very wise, still less one who believes that he is wise enough, and less yet one who believes himself to be wise from himself. This is because such are not in a state to receive the light of heaven from a love of genuine wisdom. It is genuine wisdom for a man to see from the light of heaven that what he knows, understands, and is wise in, is so little in comparison with what he does not know and understand, and in which he is not wise, as to be like a drop to the ocean, consequently as almost nothing. Everyone who is in this paradisal garden, and who acknowledges both from perception and from seeing it in himself that his wisdom is relatively so slight, sees that Temple of Wisdom; for it is the inner light in man's mind that enables him to see it, and not the outer light apart from the inner."
[2] So because I had often thought, and had cause to acknowledge, first from knowledge, then from perception, and finally from inner light, that man has so little wisdom, behold, it was granted me to see that temple. In form it was wonderful. It was elevated high above the ground; it was four-square, with walls of crystal, a gracefully-arched roof of transparent jasper; and a substructure of various precious stones. The steps for ascent into it were of polished alabaster. At the sides of the steps there appeared figures of lions and their whelps.
I then asked if it was allowable to enter, and was told that it was. I therefore ascended the steps, and as I entered I saw cherub-like forms flying under the roof, but soon vanishing. The floor on which we walked was of cedar, and the whole temple, from the transparency of the roof and walls, was built to be a form of light. [3] The angelic spirit entered with me, and I told him what I had heard from the two angels about love and wisdom, and about charity and faith The angel said, "Did they not also speak of a third?"
"What third?" I asked.
He replied, "The good of use. Love and wisdom apart from good of use are not anything; they are merely ideal entities, and they only become real when they exist in use; for love, wisdom, and use are three things that cannot be separated; if separated, neither of them is anything. Apart from wisdom love is nothing; but in wisdom it takes form for something; and that something for which it takes form is use; thus when love, by means of wisdom, is in use, it really is, because it actually exists. These are precisely like end, cause and effect; the end is nothing unless it is in effect through the cause; if either of these three passes away, the whole passes away and becomes as nothing. [4] Also it is the same with charity, faith, and works. Apart from faith charity is nothing, neither is faith anything apart from charity, nor charity and faith anything apart from works; but in works they are something, and such a something as is the use of the works. It is the same with affection, thought, and operation; and the same with will, understanding, and action; for will apart from understanding is like an eye apart from sight, and both apart from action are like the mind apart from the body. That this is so can be clearly seen in this temple, because the light in which we are here is a light that enlightens the mind's interiors. [5] That there is nothing complete and perfect unless it is a trine, geometry also teaches; for a line is nothing unless it becomes a surface, nor is a surface anything unless it becomes a solid; therefore one must pass into the other in order that they may have existence; and they have coexistence in the third. As it is in this, so it is also in each and all created things; they are terminated in a third. And it is from this that the number three signifies in the Word what is complete and whole. This being so, I could not but wonder that some professed to believe in faith alone, some in charity alone, and some in works alone, when yet one apart from the second, or both together apart from the third, are nothing." [6] But I then asked, "Cannot a man have charity and faith, and yet not works? Cannot a man have a love for something, and give thought to it, and yet not be in the performance of it?" The angel answered me, "He cannot really, but only ideally; he must be in the endeavor or will to do; and the will or endeavor is the act in essence, because it is a continual effort to act; and when its termination is reached it becomes act in externals. Therefore endeavor and will, as the internal act, are accepted by every wise man, because they are accepted by God, precisely as the external act, provided there is no failure when opportunity offers."


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