Spiritual background for EXODUS 34    previous  -  next  -  text  -  Exodus  -  BM Home  -  Full Page

THE DOCTRINE OF CHARITY AND FAITH

AC 10591. Man has been so created that he cannot die in respect to his Internal, because he is able to believe in God and also to love God, and thus to be conjoined with God in faith and love; and to be conjoined with God is to live forever.

AC 10592. This Internal is in every man who is born. His External is that by means of which he brings into effect the things that belong to faith and love, thus that belong to the Internal. The Internal is what is called the "soul," and the External is what is called the "body."

AC 10593. The external which man carries about in the world has been accommodated to uses in the world. This external is what is laid aside when the man dies; but the external which has been accommodated to uses in the other life does not die. This latter external together with the internal is called a "spirit;" a good spirit and an angel if the man had been good in the world; and an evil spirit if he had been evil.

AC 10594. In the other life the spirit of man appears in the human form absolutely as in the world. He also enjoys the capability of seeing, of hearing, of speaking, and of feeling, as in the world; and is endowed with every capability of thinking, of willing, and of acting, as in the world. In a word, he is a man in respect to each and all things, except that he is not encompassed with that gross body with which he was encompassed in the world. This he leaves behind when he dies, nor does be ever resume it.

AC 10595. It is this continuation of life which is meant by Resurrection. The reason why men believe that they will not rise again until the Last Judgment, when also every visible thing of the world will perish, is that they have not understood the Word, and that sensuous men place the very life itself in the body, and believe that unless this were to live again it would be all over with man.

AC 10596. The life of man after death is the life of his love, and the life of his faith; consequently such as has been his love, and such as has been his faith, during his life in the world, such his life remains forever. The life of hell is for those who have loved themselves and the world above all things; and the life of heaven for those who have loved God above all things and the neighbor as themselves. These are they who have faith; but the former are they who have not faith. The life of heaven is what is called eternal life; and the life of hell is what is called spiritual death.

AC 10597. The Word teaches that man lives after death, as where it is said that "God is not the God of the dead but of the living" (Matt 22:32); that after death Lazarus was taken up into heaven, but the rich man was cast into hell (Luke 16:22, 23); that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are there (Matt. 8:11; 22:32; Luke 16:23-25, 29); that Jesus said to the thief, "This day shalt thou be with Me in paradise" (Luke 23:43); and in other places.

CONTINUATION ABOUT THE FOURTH EARTH IN THE STARRY HEAVEN

AC 10708. When I inquired further about their way of speaking, they said that the inhabitants of that earth have not articulate speech, such as I have; but still it ends in what is sonorous with a kind of speaking as it were articulate. It was explained that this quasi articulate speaking is not effected by means of words; but by means of ideas, such as are in the proximate thought in which a man is when he is speaking. These ideas are distinctly different from those of the interior thought in which a man is when he is not speaking, but is forming a judgment about things. From this sonorousness thus modified by means of ideas the discourse is perceived more fully than is discourse by means of words; for the general affection which is in the sound of manís speech, being thus modified by ideas, gives a more interior and thus a fuller perception.

AC 10709. They said, further, that when they are speaking among themselves, they for the most part advance to the ninth use, and that there are some in the universe who in speaking advance to the fifth use, some to the seventh, to the tenth, to the fifteenth, to the twentieth, and even to the fiftieth. When I wondered what this meant it was explained, namely, that it consists in speaking remotely from the thing that is the subject of the discourse. This was illustrated by examples, as for instance, when some one is in a place of worship, and it is asked where he is, they do not say that he is there, but that he is not at home, that he is far from his house, and so on. By this they mean that he is with God, thus in the place of worship, for he who is in a place of worship is with God, and in so far as he is with God he is not at home, or in his own house; by being in his own house they also mean being at home. To take another example: When some one binds another by such things as are of his love, they say to him, "thou knowest how to do it," or "now thou art in it," or "now it is in thee," or otherwise, provided it is remotely expressed This is called speaking to the fifth, the ninth, the fifteenth, the twentieth, even to the fiftieth use. To "speak to the use" is a customary expression in heaven; and its meaning is according to the degree of the remoteness from the thing which is the subject. And wonderful to say, when anyone speaks in this remote manner, they at once know to what degree it goes without counting it. They who are in the cogitative speech in which are the inhabitants of that earth, and many others who in like manner speak together by means of the face and the lips, and by what is sonorous varied according to the ideas of thought, instantly perceive the thing which is so spoken of; for the thought itself unfolds and publishes itself more fully by such speech than by the speech of words, which is relatively material.

AC 10710. On account of such a method of thinking and speaking, the spirits of that earth cannot be together with the spirits of our earth, because the spirits of our earth think and speak from the thing itself, and not remotely from it. Neither can they be together with the spirits of the earth Mercury, because these also stop in the nearest use; and therefore in so far as they can, they withdraw from both.

AC 10711. They wish to be bearded, and to appear old, for the reason that they always choose and set over them some bearded old man, who is as it were their king and high priest. The common people also worship him, and love to live according to his manner of living, insomuch that they believe that his life is communicated to them; but the more intelligent of them worship God. Such a bearded old man, who had been their high priest, was one of those who were with me, and as he had accepted Divine worship from the common spirits, and had led them to believe that his life was communicated to them, he was severely punished, which was done by wrapping him up in a cloth and whirling him round; and then he was cast into the hell near his own earth.

AC 10712. When they were allowed to see the objects of this earth through my eyes, they paid very little attention to them, because it is customary for them to think far away from the nearest objects; thus not to see them, except in shade; for such as is the thought of a man, such is his sight; because it is the interior sight which is of the thought that sees in the exterior, and through it. They then said that their earth is very rocky, and that there are only some valleys between the rocks which are cultivated. But it was perceived that it was so only where these people dwelt; and that in other places it is different. They were with me for almost an entire day.

AC 10713. The fifth earth seen in the starry heaven will be described at the end of the following chapter.

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