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www.BibleMeanings.info  ·  New Truth  ·  Conjugial Love  ·  Sections 57 ff previous  ·  next


CL 57. Conjugial love is of infinite variety, not being the same with one person as with another. With many it does indeed appear to be the same, but it appears so only before the judgment of the body, and from this judgment, seeing that it is gross and dull, man has little discernment of such things. By the judgment of the body is meant the judgment of the mind from the external senses. Before those who see from the judgment of the spirit, the differences are apparent; and more distinctly apparent before those who can elevate the sight of this judgment still higher, which is done by its withdrawal from the senses and its exaltation into higher light. Such men can then confirm themselves by the understanding and so can see that conjugial love is not the same with one person as with another. Yet no one can see the infinite varieties of that love in any light of the understanding, even though elevated, unless he first know the nature of the love itself in its essence and integrity; thus its nature when together with life it was implanted in man by God. Unless its state then be known, a state which was most perfect, its differences cannot be discovered by any inquiry, there being no stable point from which, as a commencement, those differences can be deduced, and to which, by keeping it in view, they can refer themselves and so be seen truly and not fallaciously. This is the reason why we have set out to describe this love in its genuine essence; and, since it was in this essence when together with life it was infused into man by God, to describe it as it was in its primeval state. In this state it was truly conjugial, and therefore this chapter is entitled LOVE TRULY CONJUGIAL. The description shall be given in the following order:

1. That there is a love truly conjugial, which is so rare at this day that it is not known what it is and scarcely that it is.

2. That the origin of this love is from the marriage of good and truth.

3. That the correspondence of this love is with the marriage of the Lord and the Church.

4. That, regarded from its origin and correspondence, this love is celestial, spiritual, holy, pure, and clean, above every love which is from the Lord with the angels of heaven and the men of the Church.

5. That it is also the fundamental love of all celestial and spiritual loves, and thence of all natural loves.

6. And that into this love are gathered all joys and delights from their first to their last.

7. But that no others come into this love and can be in it save those who approach the Lord, love the truths of the Church and do its goods.

8. That this love was the love of loves with the ancients who lived in the Golden, Silver, and Copper Ages, but that afterwards it gradually departed.

The explanation of these points now follows:

CL 58. I. That there is a love truly conjugial, which is so rare at this day that it is not known what it is and scarcely that it is. That there is a conjugial love such as is described in the following pages, can indeed be acknowledged from the first state of that love when it is insinuating itself and entering into the heart of a young man and woman; thus as it is with those who begin to love one only of the sex and to desire her as their bride; and still more during the time of betrothal and during the continuance of this time as it progresses towards the nuptials, and then in the nuptial ceremony and during the first days that follow. Who does not then give acknowledgment and consent to the following: That this love is the fundamental of all loves, and that into it are gathered all joys and all delights from their first to their last. And who does not know, that after this happy time these states of gladness successively decline and pass away till at last the married pair become scarcely sensible of them? If it be said to them then, as before, that this love is the fundamental of all loves and that into it is gathered every joy and gladness, they neither assent to it nor acknowledge it, and perhaps they will say that these are idle words or that they are transcendental mysteries. It is evident from this, that the primitive love of marriage emulates love truly conjugial and presents it to view in an image; and this because love of the sex, which is unchaste, is then cast out and, implanted in its place, resides love of one of the sex, which is love truly conjugial and is chaste. Who does not then look upon other women with a loveless nod and upon his own with a loving?

CL 59. The reason why love truly conjugial is so rare that it is not known what it is and scarcely that it is, is because the state of pleasure before the nuptials is afterwards changed into a state of indifference arising from insensibility to that pleasure. The causes of this change of state are more than can here be adduced, but they will be adduced in the following pages when the causes of colds, separations, and divorces are disclosed in their order. There it will be seen that with most men at this day, the image and with it the knowledge of conjugial love is so far effaced that it is not known what it is and scarcely that it is.

It is known that every man when born is merely corporeal, and that from being corporeal he becomes natural, more and more interior, and then rational, and finally spiritual. The reason why this takes place progressively, is because the corporeal is as the ground wherein, in their due order, are implanted things natural, rational, and spiritual; thus the man becomes more and more a man.

[2] It is almost the same when he enters into marriage; the man then becomes a fuller man because conjoined with a consort with whom he acts as one man. In the first state, spoken of above, this is effected in an image; then in like manner he commences from the corporeal and advances into the natural, but now as to the conjugial life and hence as to conjunction into a one. They who then love corporeal natural things, and only from them love things rational, cannot be conjoined with a consort as into a one except as to those externals. And when the externals fail, cold invades the internals and dispels the delights of that love, first expelling them from the mind and so from the body, and then from the body and so from the mind, and this until nothing is left of the remembrance of the early state of their marriage, and consequently no knowledge concerning it. Now since this is the case with most men at the present day, it is clear that it is not known what love truly conjugial is and scarcely that it is. Not so with those who are spiritual. With them, the first state is an initiation into perpetual states of happiness; and these states are promoted in the degree that the spiritual rational of the mind of the one, and from this the sensual natural of the body, conjoins and unites itself with that of the other. But such men are rare.

CL 60. II. That the origin of this love is from the marriage of good and truth. Being a universal truth, it is acknowledged by every intelligent man that all things in the universe have relation to good and truth. It must also be acknowledged that in each and everything of the universe, good is conjoined with truth and truth with good, for this also is a universal truth cohering with the other. The reason why all things in the universe have relation to good and truth, and why good is conjoined with truth and truth with good, is because both proceed from the Lord, and proceed from Him as a one. The two things which proceed from the Lord are love and wisdom, for these are Himself and are therefore from Him; and all things pertaining to love are called goods, and all pertaining to wisdom are called truths. And since these two proceed from Him as the Creator, it follows that these two are in the things created. This can be illustrated by the heat and light which proceed from the sun. From these are all things on the earth, it being according to their presence and according to their conjunction that things germinate; and natural heat corresponds to spiritual heat which is love, and natural light to spiritual light which is wisdom.

CL 61. That conjugial love proceeds from the marriage of good and truth will be shown in the treatise or chapter that follows. It is mentioned here merely that it may be seen that this love is celestial, spiritual, and holy, because from a celestial, spiritual, and holy origin. That it may be seen that the origin of conjugial love is from the marriage of good and truth, it is important that here something concerning it be presented in a brief summary. It was said just above, that there is a conjunction of good and truth in each and every created thing, and conjunction is not possible unless it be reciprocal, for conjunction from the one side and not in turn from the other is dissolved of itself. Now since there is a conjunction of good and truth, and since it is reciprocal, it follows that there is a truth of good or truth from good and a good of truth or good from truth. That the truth of good or truth from good is in the male and is the masculine itself, and that the good of truth or good from truth is in the female and is the feminine itself, and that there is a conjugial union between these two, will be shown in the chapter that next follows. It is mentioned here that some preliminary idea may be had concerning it.

CL 62. III. That the correspondence of this love is with the marriage of the Lord and the Church, that is, as the Lord loves the Church and wills that the Church shall love Him, so husband and wife mutually love each other. That there is a correspondence between these marriages is known in the Christian world, but not as yet its nature. This correspondence, therefore, shall be explained in a particular chapter which also follows. It is mentioned here to the end that it may be seen that conjugial love is celestial, spiritual, and holy, because it corresponds to the celestial, spiritual, and holy marriage of the Lord and the Church. This correspondence, moreover, follows from the origin of conjugial love from the marriage of good and truth, treated of in the preceding article, the marriage of good and truth being the Church with man. The marriage of good and truth is the same as the marriage of charity and faith, since good pertains to charity and truth to faith. That this marriage makes the Church must needs be acknowledged for it is a universal truth, and every universal truth is acknowledged as soon as heard. This is due to influx from the Lord and at the same time to confirmation by heaven. Now, as the Church is the Lord's because from the Lord, and as conjugial love corresponds to the marriage of the Lord and the Church, it follows that this love is from the Lord.

CL 63. As to how the Church, and thereby conjugial love, is formed by the Lord with two married partners, this shall be illustrated in the chapter above referred to. Suffice it to say here that the Church is formed by the Lord with the man and through the man with the wife; and that when it is formed with both, it is a full Church for there is then a full conjunction of good and truth, and the conjunction of good and truth is the Church. That the conjunctive inclination, which is conjugial love, is present in the same degree as the conjunction of good and truth, which is the Church, will be confirmed by demonstrative arguments in what follows in this series.

CL 64. IV. That, (regarded) from its origin and correspondence, this love is celestial, spiritual, holy, pure, and clean, above every love which is from the Lord with the angels of heaven and the men of the Church. That conjugial love is such from its origin, which is the marriage of good and truth, was confirmed above in a few words but then only as a foretaste; likewise, that this love is such, from its correspondence with the marriage of the Lord and the Church. These two marriages, from which conjugial love descends as an offshoot, are holiness itself. Therefore if that love is received from its Author, who is the Lord, holiness from Him follows, and this continually refines and purifies it. If then, there is a desire and striving for it in man's will, the love is being perpetually cleansed and purified from day to day.

[2] Conjugial love is called celestial and spiritual because it is with the angels of the heavens, being celestial with the angels of the highest heaven because these angels are called celestial, and spiritual with the angels below that heaven because these angels are called spiritual. The angels are so called because the celestial are loves and hence wisdoms, and the spiritual are wisdoms and hence loves; so likewise their conjugial.

[3] Now since conjugial love is with the angels of both the higher and the lower heavens, as also was shown in the first chapter, on Marriages in Heaven, it is evident that it is holy and pure. That this love, regarded in its essence from its derivation, is holy and pure above every love with angels and with men, is because it is the head, as it were, of all other loves. Of this its eminence, something shall be said in the article which now follows.

CL 65. V. That it is also the fundamental love of all celestial and spiritual loves, and thence of all natural loves. The reason why conjugial love, regarded in its essence, is the fundamental love of all the loves of heaven and the Church, is because its origin is from the marriage of good and truth, and from this marriage proceed all the loves which make heaven and the Church with man. The good of this marriage makes the love, and the truth thereof makes the wisdom; and when love approaches wisdom and conjoins itself therewith, then love becomes love; and when wisdom in turn approaches love and conjoins itself therewith, then wisdom becomes wisdom. Love truly conjugial is nothing else than the conjunction of love and wisdom. Two married partners, between whom is this love, that is, who are in it simultaneously, are an effigy and form of the love; and in the heavens, where faces are genuine types of the affections of their love, all angels are likenesses of it, for, as already shown (n. 37), it is within them in their whole being and in every part thereof. Now since two married partners are this love in effigy and form, it follows that every love which proceeds from the very form of love is a likeness thereof. Therefore, if conjugial love is celestial and spiritual, the loves proceeding from it are also celestial and spiritual. Conjugial love, therefore, is like a parent, and all other loves like his offspring. Hence it is, that from the marriages of angels in the heavens are generated spiritual offspring which are the offspring of love and wisdom or good and truth. Concerning this generation, see (n. 51) above.

CL 66. The same is clearly evident from the creation of men into this love, and from their subsequent formation by it. The male was created that he might become wisdom from the love of growing wise, and the female that she might become the love of the male from his wisdom and so according to it. It is clear from this, that two married partners are the very forms and effigies of the marriage of love and wisdom or of good and truth. It must be clearly recognized that there is no good nor any truth which is not in a substance as its subject. Abstract goods and truths, being nowhere because they have no abode, are not possible. They certainly cannot be seen as things floating in the air. Therefore they are mere entities, of which reason seems to think abstractly but of which, nevertheless, it cannot think unless they are in subjects. For all man's ideas, even though sublimated, are substantial, that is, are attached to substances. It must further be recognized that there can be no substance unless it be a form. A substance not formed is not anything, for nothing can be predicted of it, and a subject without predicates is also an entity of no reason. These philosophic considerations are added, that in this way also it may be seen that two married partners who are in love truly conjugial are actually forms of the marriage of good and truth or love and wisdom.

CL 67. Since natural loves emanate from spiritual loves, and spiritual loves from celestial, therefore it is said that conjugial love is the fundamental of all celestial and spiritual loves, and hence of all natural loves. Natural loves have reference to the loves of self and the world, while spiritual loves have reference to love towards the neighbour, and celestial loves, to love to the Lord. Such being the relationship of these loves, the order of their sequence and the order in which they are inwardly present with man, is clear. When present in this order, then the natural loves live from the spiritual, and these from the celestial, and in this order they all live from the Lord from whom they are.

CL 68. VI. And that into this love are gathered all joys and all delights from their first to their last. All delights whatsoever which are felt by man are delights of his love, it being by delights that love manifests itself, yea, that it exists and lives. That delights are exalted in the degree that the love is exalted and also according as incidental affections more nearly touch the ruling love, is known. Now because, as already shown, conjugial love is the fundamental of all good loves and is inscribed upon the very least parts of man, it follows that its delights exceed the delights of all other loves, and also that it makes all other loves delightful according to its presence and at the same time its conjunction with them; for it expands the inmost parts of the mind, and at the same time the inmost parts of the body, as the delicious current of its fountain flows through them and opens them up.

[2] That all delights from their first to their last are gathered into this love, is because of the excellence of its use above all other uses. Its use is the propagation of the human race, and thence of the angelic heavens; and because this use was the end of ends of creation, it follows that all the states of blessedness, happiness, delight, pleasantness, and pleasure which, by the Lord the Creator, could ever be conferred on man, are gathered into this his love. That delights follow use and are present with man according to the love thereof, is manifest from the delights of the five senses, sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch. Each of these has its own delights with variations according to their specific uses. What then should not be the delights of the sense of conjugial love, whose use is the complex of all other uses!

CL 69. I know that few will acknowledge that all joys and delights from the first to the last are gathered into conjugial love, because, as explained and confirmed above (n. 58, 59), the love truly conjugial into which they are gathered is at this day so rare that it is not known what it is and scarcely that it is, and these joys and delights are present in no other conjugial love than that which is genuine. And since this is so rare on earth, it is impossible to describe its supereminent felicities from any other source than the mouth of angels, for they are in it. These have said that its inmost delights, which are those of the soul-- and it is into the soul that the conjugial of love and wisdom or good and truth from the Lord first flows--are imperceptible and hence ineffable, being delights of peace and at the same time of innocence; that in their descent they become more and more perceptible--in the higher regions of the mind as beatitudes, in the lower as happiness, and in the bosom, as delights therefrom; and that from the bosom, they pour themselves into each and every part of the body, and finally, uniting in ultimates, into the delight of delights.

[2] Moreover, angels have related wonders concerning them, saying that their varieties in the souls of married partners, and from these in their minds, and from these in their bosoms, are infinite in number and are also eternal; and that they are exalted according to the wisdom with the husbands, and this because the husbands live to eternity in the flower of their age, and nothing is more blessed to them than to grow ever more wise. But more concerning these delights as told by the mouth of angels, may be seen in the Memorable Relations, especially in those which follow after some of the later chapters.

CL 70. VII. But that no others come into this love and can be in it save those who approach the Lord, love the truths of the Church and do its goods. The reason why no others come into that love save those who approach the Lord, is because monogamous marriages, or marriages of one man with one wife, correspond to the marriage of the Lord and the Church, and because their origin is the marriage of good and truth, of which above (n. 60-62). From this origin and correspondence it follows, that love truly conjugial is from the Lord and is with those who approach Him directly. This, however, cannot be fully confirmed unless the above two arcana be taken up specifically, which will be done in the next following chapters, the one on the Origin of Conjugial Love from the Marriage of Good and Truth, and the other on the Marriage of the Lord and the Church and its Correspondence. That from this origin and correspondence, it follows that conjugial love is with man according to the state of the Church with him, will also be shown there.

CL 71. The reason why no others can be in love truly conjugial save those who receive it from the Lord, being those who approach Him directly and from Him live the life of the Church, is because, as shown above (n. 64), that love, regarded from its origin and correspondence, is celestial, spiritual, holy, pure, and clean, above every other love which is with the angels of heaven and with the men of the Church; and these its attributes cannot exist save with those who are conjoined with the Lord and by Him are consociated with angels of heaven; for such men shun extra-conjugial loves, which are conjunctions with others than their own partner, as injuries to the soul and as the stagnant pools of hell; and so far as partners shun such conjunctions even as to the lusts of the will and the intentions therefrom, so far that love is purified with them and successively becomes spiritual, first during their life on earth and afterwards in heaven.

[2] Neither with men nor with angels can any love ever become pure. So also with this love. But since it is the intention which is of the will that is primarily regarded by the Lord, therefore, so far as a man is in this intention and perseveres therein, so far he is initiated into the purity and holiness of this love and successively progresses therein. That no others can be in spiritual conjugial love save those who from the Lord are of this character, is because in that love is heaven, and the natural man, with whom the love derives its pleasure solely from the flesh, cannot draw near to heaven or to any angel, nay, and not to any man in whom this love is; for it is the fundamental of all celestial and spiritual loves;see above (n. 65-67).

[3] That such is the case has been proved to me by experience. In the spiritual world, I have seen genii who were being prepared for hell, approach an angel who was in delight with his consort. At a distance, as they were approaching, they became like furies and sought for caves and ditches as places of refuge into which they might cast themselves. That evil spirits love what is homogeneous with their affection, howsoever unclean it is, and hold in aversion the spirits of heaven as heterogeneous to their affections, heaven being pure, may be concluded from what is told in the Preliminaries, (n. 10).

CL 72. That those come into this love and can be in it, who love the truths of the Church and do its goods, is because no others are received by the Lord; for these are in conjunction with Him, and by Him can be held in this love. There are two things which make the Church and thence heaven with man: the truth of faith and the good of life. The truth of faith effects the Lord's presence, and the good of life according to the truths of faith, effects conjunction with Him and thus makes the Church and heaven. That the truth of faith effects the Lord's presence is because it pertains to light, spiritual light being nothing else. That the good of life effects conjunction, is because it pertains to heat; nor is spiritual heat anything else, for it is love, and the good of life pertains to love. It is well known that all light, even that of winter, effects presence, and that heat united with light effects conjunction; for gardens and flower-beds are seen in all kinds of light, but do not blossom and bear fruit except when heat conjoins itself to light. From the above, the conclusion is evident, that not those who merely know the truths of the Church are endowed by the Lord with love truly conjugial but those who both know its truths and do its goods.

CL 73. VIII. That this love was the love of loves with the ancients who lived in the Golden, Silver, and Copper Ages. That conjugial love was the love of loves with the most ancient and ancient peoples who lived in the primitive ages which are so named, cannot be learned from history because their writings are not extant, and the writings that are extant are by writers posterior to those ages, it being by these writers that the ages were named and the purity and integrity of their life described, and also its gradual descent as from gold to iron. The last or iron age, however, which commenced from the time of these writers, can in some measure be gathered from the history of certain kings and judges and of those wise men who in Greece and elsewhere were called sophi. It is foretold that this age did not hold firm as does iron when by itself, but became like iron mixed with clay, which do not stick together (Daniel 2:43).

[2] Now since the Ages named from gold, silver, and copper had passed away before the days of (the above-mentioned) writings, and since knowledge concerning their marriages is thus not possible on earth, it has pleased the Lord to reveal these marriages to me in a spiritual way, by leading me to the heavens where are the dwellings of the men (of those ages), that there, from their own lips, I might learn concerning the nature of marriages with them when they were living in their Ages. For all who have passed away from the natural world since the creation, are in the spiritual world; and as to their loves they are all like themselves (as they had been in the world) and remain so to eternity. Since these particulars merit being known and related, and since they confirm the sacredness of marriages, I wish to make them public as they were shown me while I was awake in the spirit, and were recalled to my memory by an angel and so described. And since they are relations from the spiritual world, like the others which follow the chapters, I have thought to distribute them into six Memorable Relations, following the progress of the Ages.

CL 74. These six Memorable Relations from the spiritual world concerning conjugial love reveal what the nature of that love was in the First Ages, what it was after those Ages, and what it is at the present day. From them it is evident that this love has successively fallen away from its holiness and purity until it has become scortatory, but that, nevertheless, there is hope of its being brought back to its primeval or ancient holiness.

CL 75. The First Memorable Relation:

Once when meditating on conjugial love, my mind was seized with a desire to know what that love had been with those who lived in the Golden Age, and what it had been later with those who lived in the Ages that followed and which are named from silver, copper, and iron; and, knowing that all who had lived well in those Ages are in the heavens, I prayed the Lord that He would allow me to speak with them and be instructed. And lo, an angel stood by me and said: "I am sent by the Lord to be your guide and companion. First I will guide and accompany you to those who lived in the first age or period called GOLDEN"; and he added, "The way to them is hard. It lies through a dark. forest through which no one can pass without a guide given him by the Lord."

[2] Being in the spirit, I girded myself for the journey, and we turned our faces towards the east. As we went on, I saw a mountain whose height extended above the region of the clouds. We passed through a great desert and came into the forest of which the angel had spoken. It was thick with trees of various kinds, and dark by reason of their density. The forest was intersected by many narrow paths, and the angel said: "These paths are so many tortuous paths of error, and unless his eyes are opened by the Lord to see the olive trees entwined with vine tendrils, and his steps directed from tree to tree, the traveller would wander off into the Tartarean shades which lie round about at the sides. This forest is such, to the end that it may guard the approach; for none but the primeval race dwells on that mountain."

[3] After entering the forest, our eyes were opened and here and there we saw olive trees entwined with vines from which hung clusters of grapes of a dark blue colour. The trees were arranged in continuous gyres, and following these as they came into view we went round and round. At last we saw a grove of lofty cedars and on their branches some eagles. Seeing these, the angel said, "We are now not far from the top of the mountain."

We continued on, and lo, beyond the grove, a circular plain whereon male and female lambs were feeding. These were forms representative of the state of innocence and peace of those who dwelt on the mountain. We crossed this plain, and lo, in front and at the sides, in every direction as far as the eye could reach, were seen tabernacles after tabernacles to the number of many thousands. The angel then said: "We are now in the camp where dwells the Army of the Lord Jehovih, this being what they call themselves and their habitations. While living in the world, these most ancient peoples dwelt in tabernacles, and therefore they dwell in them now also. But let us bend our way to the south where are the wiser of them, that we may meet some one with whom to converse."

[4] Walking on, I saw at a distance three boys and three girls sitting at the door of one of the tents, but when we drew near, they were seen as men and women of middle stature. The angel then said: "At a distance, all the inhabitants of this mountain appear like little children, for they are in a state of innocence, and infancy is the appearance of innocence." On seeing us, the men ran up to us and said: "Whence are you, and how came you hither? Your faces are not of the faces of our mountain." In reply, the angel told them the means of our approach through the forest and the reason of our coming. Hearing this, one of the three men invited us to his tabernacle and took us in. The man was clothed with a mantle the colour of hyacinth, and a tunic of white wool, and his wife with a crimson robe, beneath which on her bosom was a tunic wrought with fine needlework.

[5] Desiring in my thought to learn about the marriages of the most ancients, I looked now at the husband, now at his wife, and in their faces I observed the unity, as it were, of their souls. So I said, "You two are one." The man replied: "We are one; her life is in me and mine in her. We are two bodies but one soul. The union between us is like the union of the two tents in the breast which are called heart and lungs, she being my heart and I her lungs. But here, by heart we mean love and by lungs wisdom. Thus she is the love of my wisdom and I am the wisdom of her love. Therefore her love veils my wisdom from without, and my wisdom is in her love from within. Hence, as you said, the appearance in our faces of the unity of our souls."

[6] I then asked him: "If such is the union, can you look at any other woman than your own?" He replied: "I can; but as my wife is united to my soul, we two look together and then nothing of lust can enter in; for when I look at the wives of others, I look at them through my own wife whom alone I love. And because she, my wife, has a perception of all my inclinations, therefore, as an intermediary she directs my thoughts, and removes everything discordant. At the same time she imparts cold and horror for everything unchaste. Therefore it is as impossible for us here to look upon a companion's wife from lust as it is to look at the light of our heaven from Tartarean shade. With us therefore, there is no idea of thought, still less any word of speech, for the allurements of libidinous love." He could not utter the word whoredom because the chastity of their heaven strove against it. Speaking to me, the angel-guide then said, "You now hear the speech of the angels of this heaven, that it is the speech of wisdom; for they speak from causes."

[7] After this, while looking around, I saw their tabernacle. It seemed as though overlaid with gold, and I inquired as to the cause of this. The man replied: "It is from a flaming light which glitters like gold, and whenever we are in discourse concerning conjugial love, this irradiates and tinges the coverings of our tabernacle; for the heat from our sun, which in its essence is love, then bares itself and tinges the light, which in its essence is wisdom, with its own golden colour. This is done because in its origin conjugial love is the sport of wisdom and love, man being born that he may be wisdom and woman that she may be the love of the man's wisdom. Hence, in conjugial love and from it come the delights of that sport between us and our wives. Here, for thousands of years, we have seen clearly that these delights are superlative and eminent in abundance, degree, and vigour, according to the worship among us of the Lord Jehovih, from whom inflows that heavenly union or marriage which is the union or marriage of love and wisdom."

[8] When he had finished speaking, I saw upon a hill in the centre of the tabernacles a great light, and I asked, "Whence comes that light?" He replied, "It is from the sanctuary of the tabernacle of our worship."

I then asked him whether it was allowed to approach that tabernacle, and he said it was. Going to it, I then saw that both without and within, it was exactly like the tabernacle built for the sons of Israel in the wilderness, the pattern of which was shown to Moses on Mount Sinai (Exod. 25:40; 26:30), and I asked the man, "What is inside that sanctuary from whence comes so great a light?" He replied, "A tablet on which is the inscription, THE COVENANT BETWEEN JEHOVAH AND THE HEAVENS. He said no more.

[9] Since we were then ready to depart, I asked him, "When living in the natural world, did any of you live with more than one wife?" He answered, "I know not one, for we could not think of more. Those who had thought of more have told us that the heavenly blessedness of their souls at once withdrew from the inmost parts of their bodies to the extremities, even to the fingernails, and with it the honourable badges of virility. When this was perceived, they were expelled from our land." Saying this, the man ran to his tent and returned with a pomegranate wherein was an abundance of golden seeds. This he gave to me, and I brought it away as a sign that we had been with those who had lived in the Golden Age. After a salutation of peace, we then departed and returned home.

CL 76. The Second Memorable Relation:

The next day, the same angel came to me and said, "You wish me to guide and accompany you to the peoples who lived in the SILVER AGE or period, that from them we may hear about the marriages of their time"; and he added, "These also may not be approached save under the Lord's auspices."

Being in the spirit as before, I accompanied my guide. We came first to a hill on the border between the east and the south. And when we were on its summit, he showed me a widely extended stretch of country. In the far distance we saw a height resembling a mountain, between which and the hill on which we stood, was a valley, and beyond that, a plain from which rose a gentle acclivity.

We descended the hill to cross the valley, and here and there on either side we saw images of men and of various beasts, birds, and fishes carved in wood and stone, and I asked the angel, "What are these? Are they idols?" He replied: "No, indeed. They are figures representative of various moral virtues and spiritual truths. Among the peoples of this age flourished the science of correspondences; and as every man, beast, bird, and fish corresponds to some quality, therefore each sculptured form represents some particular aspect of a virtue or truth, and many together represent the virtue or truth itself in a general extended form. They are what in Egypt were called hieroglyphics."

[2] We pursued our way through the valley, and when we entered the plain, lo, we saw horses and chariots--horses variously harnessed and caparisoned, and chariots of different forms, some carved like eagles, some like whales, some like stags with horns, some like unicorns; and also, at the farther end, some wagons, and round about at the sides, stables. As we drew near, however, both horses and chariots disappeared and in their stead we saw men in couples, walking, talking with each other, and discussing. The angel then said to me: "Seen at a distance, the different kinds of horses, chariots, and stables are appearances of the rational intelligence of the men of this Age; for, from its correspondence, a horse signifies the understanding of truth, a chariot the teaching thereof, and stables the places of instruction. You know that in this world all things appear according to correspondences."

[3] Passing these by, we went up a long ascent and at last saw a city. This we entered, and walking through its streets and public places, we examined its houses which were so many palaces built of marble. In front of them were steps of alabaster, and at the sides of the steps, columns of jasper. We also saw temples built of precious stone of the colour of sapphire and lapis lazuli. The angel then told me: "Their houses are of stone because stones signify natural truths, and precious stones spiritual truths, and all those who lived in the Silver Age had intelligence from spiritual truths and thence from natural. Silver also has a like signification."

[4] As we wandered through the city, we saw here and there consorts walking in pairs; and as they were husbands and wives, we hoped that we might be invited in somewhere. As we were walking along with this in mind, one couple called us back into their house, and we mounted the steps and entered. Speaking for me, the angel then explained to them the reason why we had come to this heaven, that it was "for the sake of information respecting marriages among the ancients from whom you in this heaven are." They answered: "We were from a people in Asia; and the study of our Age was the study of truths, by which we had intelligence. This study was the study of our souls and minds while the study of our bodily senses was the representation of truths in forms; and the science of correspondences conjoined the sensations of our bodies with the perceptions of our minds and gave us intelligence."

[5] On hearing this, the angel requested that they would tell us something about marriages among them. The husband then said: "There is a correspondence between spiritual marriage, which is that of truth with good, and natural marriage which is that of a man with one wife. Having studied correspondences, we have seen that the Church with its truths and goods can by no means exist save with those who live with one wife in love truly conjugial; for the marriage of good and truth is the Church with man. Therefore, we who are here, all say that the husband is truth and the wife the good thereof, and that good cannot love any other truth than its own, nor, in return, can truth love any other good than its own. If any other were loved, the internal marriage which makes the Church would vanish. Marriage would then become merely external, and to this corresponds, not the Church, but idolatry. For this reason, we call marriage with one wife a sacrament, but were it to take place among us with more than one, we would call it a sacrilege."

[6] After he had thus spoken, we were introduced into a room adjoining the bed-chamber. Here, on the walls, were many works of art and some small images as though cast in silver; and I asked "What are these?" He said: "They are pictures and forms representative of the many qualities, attributes, and delights which belong to conjugial love. Some represent the unity of souls, some the conjunction of minds, some the concord of hearts, and some the delights arising therefrom."

While examining these representations, we saw upon the wall a rainbow, as it were, composed of three colours, crimson, hyacinthine, and white; and we saw how that the crimson passed through the hyacinthine and tinged the white with dark blue, while the white flowed back through the hyacinthine into the crimson and raised it to a flamy beam, as it were.

[7] The husband then asked me, "Do you understand this?" I answered, "Instruct me"; whereupon he said: "From its correspondence, the crimson signifies the conjugial love of the wife, the white the intelligence of the husband, the hyacinthine the beginning of conjugial love in the husband's perception from the wife, and the dark blue with which the white was tinged, conjugial love then in the husband. The flowing back of this colour through the hyacinthine into the crimson and the raising of the latter to a flamy beam, as it were, signifies the conjugial love of the husband flowing back to the wife. Such things are represented on these walls whenever, from meditation on conjugial love and its mutual, successive, and simultaneous union, we look with intent gaze at the rainbows there pictured." To this I said: "At the present day, such things are more than mystical for they are representative appearances of the arcana of the conjugial love of one man with one wife." He replied: "They are; but to us here they are not arcane and therefore are not mystical."

[8] When he had thus spoken, there appeared at some distance a chariot drawn by small white horses. Seeing this, the angel said, "That chariot is a sign for us to depart." Then, as we descended the steps, our host gave us a cluster of white grapes with the vine leaves attached; and lo (in our hands), the leaves became silver; and we brought them away as a sign that we had spoken with people of the Silver Age.

CL 77. The Third Memorable Relation:

The next day, the angel-guide and companion came again and said: "Make ready and let us go to the heavenly inhabitants in the west who are from the men who lived in the third or COPPER AGE. Their dwelling-places extend from the south over the west towards the north, but not into the north." So I made ready and accompanied him.

We entered their heaven at the southern side, where was a magnificent grove of palm trees and laurels. Having passed through this grove, we then saw, just on the western border, giants of a stature twice as high as the ordinary human stature; and they asked us, "Who let you in through the grove?" "The God of heaven," said the angel. They responded, "We are guards to the ancient western heaven; but pass through," and we passed on.

[2] Then from a watch-tower we saw a mountain towering to the clouds; and between us on the watch-tower and that mountain, we saw villa after villa with gardens, groves, and fields between them. Passing by these villas, we went on to the mountain and this we ascended. And lo, its summit was not a peak but a plain, and on this plain was an extensive and spacious city, all whose houses were of the wood of resinous trees and their roofs of planks.

I asked the angel, "Why are the houses here of wood?" and he answered, "Because wood signifies natural good, and in that good were the men of the third Age of the earth. Copper also signifies natural good, and therefore the Age in which they lived was named by the ancients from copper. Here also are sacred buildings constructed of olive wood. In their centre is a sanctuary, and there in an Ark lies the Word given to the inhabitants of Asia before the Israelitish Word. The historical books of this Word are called THE WARS OF JEHOVAH, and the prophetical books, ENUNCIATIONS; both are mentioned by Moses (Numbers 21:14, 15, 27-30). In the kingdoms of Asia, this Word is now lost, being preserved only in Great Tartary." He then conducted me to one of these sacred buildings, and looking in we saw in its centre the sanctuary, the whole sanctuary being in a white light of the utmost brightness. The angel then said, "That light is from that Ancient Asiatic Word; for in the heavens all Divine Truth shines."

[3] Passing out of the building, we heard that it had been announced in the city that two strangers were there and that they were to be examined as to whence they came and what was their business. An attendant of the court then came up and ordered us to the judgment seat.

To the question whence we came and what was our business there, we answered: "We have come through the grove of palm trees and have also passed the abodes of the giants who are the guards of your heaven, and afterwards through the region of villas; from which you can conclude that it is not of ourselves but of the God of heaven that we are come hither. The business for which we came, is that we may be instructed respecting your marriages, whether they are monogamous or polygamous." They responded: "What are polygamous marriages? Are they not scortatory?"

[4] The judicial tribunal then delegated an intelligent man to instruct us concerning this matter in his own home. There, in his home, having his wife by his side, he spoke to us in these words: "Preserved among us, we have precepts concerning marriages which have come down to us from primeval or most ancient peoples who, in the world, had been in love truly conjugial and hence above others in the virtue and potency of that love. They are now in a most blessed state in their heaven, which is in the east. We are their posterity, and, as fathers, they gave to us as their sons canons of life, among which is the following respecting marriages: Sons, if you would love God and the neighbour, and if you would be wise and happy to eternity, we counsel you to live as monogamists. If you depart from this precept, all heavenly love and with it internal wisdom will flee from you and you will be destroyed. This precept of our fathers, we as their sons have obeyed. Moreover, we have perceived its truth, which is, that so far as one loves his consort alone, he becomes heavenly and internal, and so far as he does not love his consort alone, he becomes natural and external, and then loves only himself and the images of his own mind and is silly and stupid.

[5] It is because of these canons that we in this heaven are all guarded against polygamists, adulterers, and whoremongers. If polygamists invade, they are cast out into the darkness of the north; if adulterers, they are cast out into the fires of the west; and if whoremongers, they are cast out into the fatuous lights of the south."

On hearing this, I asked him what he meant by the darkness of the north, the fires of the west, and the fatuous lights of the south. He answered: "The darkness of the north is dullness of mind and ignorance of truth; the fires of the west are the loves of evil; and the fatuous lights of the south are falsifications of truth, which are spiritual whoredoms."

[6] He then said, "Follow me to our treasure house." We followed him and he showed us the writings of the most ancient peoples, that they were on tablets of wood and stone, and later, on waxed tablets, and that those of the second Age were inscribed on parchments. He then brought us a parchment on which the canons of the primeval men had been copied from stone tablets, and among them was the precept concerning marriages.

[7] Having seen these and other memorable things of ancient times, the angel said, "It is now time for us to depart." Our host then went out into his garden and plucked some twigs from a tree. These he tied in a bunch which he gave us, saying,"These twigs are from a tree native or proper to our heaven, the sap of which has a balsamic fragrance."

Bringing the bunch away with us, we descended by a way neighbouring on the east, which was not guarded. And lo, the twigs were turned into shining brass, and their tips into gold, as a sign that we had been with a nation of the third Age which is named from copper or brass.

CL 78. The Fourth Memorable Relation:

Two days later, the angel again spoke to me, saying: "Let us complete the period of the Ages; there still remains the last Age which is named from IRON. The people of that Age live in the north, at the side of the west, inwards, that is to say, breadth-wise. They are all from the ancient inhabitants of Asia, with whom was the Ancient Word and worship therefrom; consequently, they lived before the time of the advent of our Lord into the world. This is evident from the writings of the ancients in which those times are so named. The same Ages are meant by the statue seen by Nebuchadnezzar, the head of which was of gold, the breast and arms of silver, the belly and thighs of brass, the legs of iron, and the feet of iron and also of clay" (Dan. 2:32, 33).

[2] All this the angel told me on the way, which was shortened and hastened by changes of state induced upon our minds according to the genius of the inhabitants whom we passed; for in the spiritual world, spaces and hence distances are appearances according to the states of minds. When we raised our eyes, behold, we were in a forest consisting of beeches, chestnuts, and oaks; and there, when we looked about, on the left were seen bears, and on the right leopards. I was wondering at this, when the angel said: "These are neither bears nor leopards. They are men who guard these inhabitants of the north. With their nostrils, they catch the life-spheres of passers-by and rush upon all who are spiritual, for these inhabitants are natural. Those who merely read the Word and draw nothing of doctrine therefrom, appear at a distance like bears, and those who confirm falsities therefrom, appear like leopards." On seeing us, however, they turned away and we passed on.

[3] After the forest, appeared thickets, and then grassy plains divided into plots and surrounded by box trees. Behind these, the country descended gently into a valley wherein were cities upon cities. Passing by some of these, we entered into a city of large size. Its streets were irregular, as likewise were its houses. The latter were built of brick with intersecting timbers and were plastered over. In the public places were fanes of hewn limestone, the substructure of which was below the ground, and the super-structure above. Into one of these we descended by three steps. Around the walls we saw idols in various forms and a crowd upon their knees adoring them. In the centre was a choir, from which the tutelary god of that city emerged as far as his head. As we were going out, the angel told me, that among the ancients who lived in the Silver Age, spoken of above, idols were representative images of spiritual truths and moral virtues; and that when the knowledge of correspondences fell from memory and became extinct, these images first became objects of worship and then were adored as gods, whence arose idolatry.

[4] Outside the fane, we examined the men and their dress. They had a steel-like face of a bluish grey colour, and were dressed like clowns, with cloths about their loins hanging from a close-fitting tunic on the chest; and on their heads were caps crimped into the shape of boats. "But enough of this," said the angel. "Let us get information respecting the marriages of the peoples of this age." We then entered the house of one of the magnates, on whose head was a cap in the shape of a turret. He received us courteously and said, "Walk in and let us engage in conversation." We walked into the vestibule and there sat down. I then asked him about the marriages of that city and country. He said: "We do not live with one wife, but some with two, some with three, and some with more, and this because variety and obedience and honour as of majesty are pleasing to us. These we receive from our wives when there are several. With only one, there would be, not delight from variety but wearisomeness from sameness; not soothing calm from obedience but trouble from equality; not happiness from domination and the honour resulting therefrom but annoyance from contention respecting superiority. And what is a woman? Was she not born subject to the will of man? to serve and not to rule? Therefore, in his own house every husband here has royal majesty, as it were. This, as belonging to our love, is also the blessedness of our life."

[5] "But," I asked, "where then is conjugial love which of two souls makes one and which conjoins minds and blesses man? That love cannot be divided; if divided, it becomes a burning heat which effervesces and passes away." To this he replied: "I do not understand what you are saying. What else blesses a man but the rivalry of his wives for the honour of supereminence with their husbands?" Saying this, the man went into his harem and opened two doors. But from the harem came a libidinous effluvium which stank like filth; it was from polygamous love, a love which is connubial and at the same time scortatory. I therefore rose up and shut the doors.

[6] I then said, "How can you continue to live on this land when you have nothing of love truly conjugial, and when, moreover, you worship idols?" To this he answered, "As to connubial love, we are so fiercely jealous of our wives that we do not permit anyone to enter our houses farther than the vestibule; and because there is jealousy, there is also love. As to the idols, we do not worship them; but we are not able to think of the God of the universe except by means of images set before our eyes; for we cannot raise our thoughts above things sensible to the body, and our thoughts concerning God above things visible thereto." I then further asked him, "Are not your idols of different forms? how can these bring the vision of one God?" to which he answered, "That is a mystery to us; something of the worship of God lies hidden in each form." I then said: "You are merely sensual corporeal. You have no love of God, nor any love of a married partner which derives anything from what is spiritual, and it is these loves together, that form man and from being sensual make him heavenly."

[7] When I had said this, there was seen through the outer door something like lightning; and I asked, "What is that?" He said: "To us such lightning is a sign that the Ancient One is about to come from the East who teaches us about God, that He is One, the only Omnipotent, who is the First and the Last. He also admonishes us not to worship idols but to look upon them merely as images representative of the virtues proceeding from the one God, which together form the worship of Him. This Ancient One is our Angel whom we revere and to whom we hearken; and when, by reason of some fantasy respecting the images, we fall into an obscure worship of God, he comes to us and raises us up."

[8] On hearing this, we left the house and the city; and on our way, we drew conclusions from what we had seen in the heavens, as to the circle and progression of conjugial love--as to its circle, that it passed from the east to the south, thence to the west, and from there to the north; and as to its progression, that it decreased according to its circling, that is to say, that in the east it was celestial, in the south spiritual, in the west natural, and in the north sensual. We also concluded that it decreased in even step with the love and worship of God. From this comes the following conclusion: In the first Age, that love was like gold, in the second like silver, in the third like brass, and in the fourth like iron; and finally it was lacking.

My angel-guide and companion then said, "Yet I am nourished by the hope that this love will be resuscitated by the God of heaven, who is the Lord; for its resuscitation is possible."

CL 79. The Fifth Memorable Relation:

The angel who had previously been my guide and companion to the ancient peoples who had lived in the four Ages, the Golden, Silver, Copper, and Iron, came to me once more and said: "You would like to see the nature of the Age which followed these ancient Ages and which still continues. Follow me then, and you shall see. They are those of whom Daniel prophesied:

A kingdom shall arise after those four, wherein iron shall be mixed with miry clay; they shall mingle themselves through the seed of man, but they shall not cleave the one with the other, even as iron is not commingled with clay." (Dan. 2:41-43).

And he added, "By the seed of man through which the iron shall be mingled with clay and yet they shall not cleave together, is meant the truth of the Word falsified."

[2] After he had thus spoken, I followed him, and on the way he told me the following: "They dwell on the border between the south and the west, but at a great distance behind those who lived in the four former Ages, and also at a greater depth."

Proceeding through the south to a region bordering upon the west, we passed through a dreadful forest; for in it were stagnant pools, from which crocodiles raised their heads and gaped at us with their wide open jaws beset with teeth. Moreover, between the pools were terrible dogs, some with three heads like Cerberus, some with two; and as we passed they all glared at us with a horrible ravenous look and fierce eyes. We entered the western part of this region and saw dragons and leopards such as are described in the Apocalypse (Apoc 12:3; 13:2).

[3] The angel then told me: "All those wild beasts which you saw are not beasts but correspondences. Thus they are representative forms of the lusts in which are the inhabitants whom we are to visit. Their lusts are represented by those horrible dogs; their deceits and cunning by the crocodiles; their falsities and their depraved inclinations in respect to things pertaining to worship, by the dragons and leopards. The inhabitants who are thus represented do not dwell immediately behind the forest but behind a great desert, the desert itself being an intermediate region; and this to the end that they may be kept entirely separate and apart from the peoples of the preceding Ages. Moreover, they are utter aliens, being entirely different from them. Like the primeval men, they do indeed have heads above their breasts, breasts above their loins, and loins above their feet, but there is nothing of gold in their heads, nothing of silver in their breasts, nothing of brass in their loins, yea, nothing of pure iron in their feet; but in their heads is iron mixed with clay; in their breasts, both these mixed with brass; in their loins, both mixed also with silver; and in their feet, all these mixed with gold. By this inversion they have been changed from men into graven images of men within whom nothing is coherent. That which was the highest has become the lowest. Thus what was the head has become the heel, and vice versa. From heaven they appear to us like clowns who rest on their elbows and move forwards with their body upside down; or like beasts lying on their backs, with upraised legs and looking at the sky from a head which they bury in the earth."

[4] We passed through the forest and entered the desert, which was no less terrible. It consisted of heaps of stones, and between them ditches from which crawled hydras and vipers, and out of which flew fiery flying serpents. The whole desert was one continuous descent. Descending the long declivity, we came at last into the valley where dwell the inhabitants of that region and Age.

Here and there were huts, and finally these were seen to be closer to each other and to be joined together into the form of a city. This we entered, and lo, the houses were constructed of scorched branches of trees stuck together with mud. The roofs were of black slate. The streets were irregular, all narrow at their beginnings but wider as they went on, and quite spacious at their end where they terminated in an open space or forum, there being as many such spaces as there were (converging) streets.

As we entered the city, it became dark because heaven was not visible. We therefore looked up, and light was given us and we saw. I then asked those whom I met, "Can you see, now that the heaven above you is not visible?" They replied, "What are you asking? We see clearly. We walk in full light." Hearing this, the angel said to me, "To them, just as to birds of night, darkness is light and light darkness, for they look downwards and not upwards."

[5] Here and there we went into the hovels, and in each hovel we saw a man with his woman. We asked whether all here live in their own house with one wife only. The men answered this with a hissing, (and our host said). "Why with only one wife? Why do you not ask whether we live with only one harlot? What is a wife but a harlot? Our laws do not permit us to go a-whoring with more than one woman, yet we do not count it dishonourable or disgraceful to do this with many--but outside the house. Among ourselves we boast of it. In this way we enjoy licence and its pleasures more than do polygamists. Why is a plurality of wives denied us, when yet it was formerly allowed; and even now it is allowed in all the countries around us? What is life with one woman alone but captivity and imprisonment? Here we break down the barrier of this prison and, delivering ourselves from servitude, set ourselves free. Who can be angry with a captive if he sets himself free when he can?"

[6] To this we answered: "Friend, you talk as if you were without religion. Who that is imbued with any reason does not know that adulteries are profane and infernal, and that marriages are holy and heavenly? Do not adulteries exist with the devils in hell, and marriages with the angels in heaven? Have you not read the seventh commandment of the Decalogue? and in Paul, that adulterers can in no wise come into heaven?" At this, our host laughed heartily and looked upon me as a simpleton and almost as a madman.

At that moment a messenger from the chief man of the city rushed up and said, "Bring the two strangers into the forum, and if they will not come, drag them. We have seen them in the shade of night. They came in secret; they are spies."

The angel then said to me: "The reason we were seen in a shade was because to them the light of heaven, in which we were, is shade, while the shade of hell is light, and this because they count nothing as a sin, not even adultery. Therefore they regard that which is false as being wholly true. Moreover, to satans in hell, that which is false shines, and that which is true darkens their eyes like the shade of night."

[7] We then said to the messenger, "We will not be forced to the forum, still less will we be dragged, but will go with you of our own accord." So we went. And lo, a great crowd was there, and from the crowd came men skilled in the law who whispered in our ears, "Take heed that you say nothing against religion, the form of government, and good manners." We replied, "We speak not against these but for them and from them."

We then asked them, "What is your religion regarding marriages?" At this, the crowd murmured and said, "What have you to do here with marriages? marriages are marriages."

We then asked, "What is your religion respecting whoredoms?" At this also the crowd murmured, saying, "What have you to do here with whoredoms? whoredoms are whoredoms. Let him who is without guilt cast the first stone."

And thirdly we asked, "Does your religion teach concerning marriages, that they are holy and heavenly? and concerning adulteries, that they are profane and infernal?" At this, many in the crowd laughed aloud and mocked and jeered, saying: "As to matters of religion, ask our priests not us; we give entire assent to their utterances, for nothing of religion falls within the judgment of the understanding. Have you not heard that the understanding is insane as regards the mysteries of which the whole of religion consists? And what have deeds to do with religion? Is it not the murmurings of a devout heart concerning expiation, satisfaction, and imputation, and not works, that beatify souls?"

[8] But then some of the city's wise men, so called, came to us and said, "Go away from here; the crowd is getting angry and soon there will be an outbreak. Let us talk with you on this matter in private. Behind the court is an ambulatory; let us retire thither. Come with us." So we followed them. They then asked us, "From where do you come and what is your business here?" and we said, "To be informed concerning marriages with you, whether they are sacred as they were with the ancients who lived in the Golden, Silver, and Copper Ages."

They replied, "Why sacred? are they not deeds of the flesh and the night?" and we answered, "Are they not also deeds of the spirit? What the flesh does from the spirit, is not that spiritual? and whatever the spirit does, it does from the marriage of good and truth. Is not this the spiritual marriage which enters into natural marriage which is the marriage of husband and wife?"

To this, the so-called wise men responded: "You refine and sublimate this thing overmuch. You are passing over things rational and mounting to things spiritual. Who can commence there? Come down and then form a judgment." To this they added in derision, "Perhaps you have the wings of an eagle and can fly into the uppermost region of heaven and see such things. We cannot."

[9] We then asked them to tell us from the height or region in which the winged ideas of their minds fly, whether they knew or could know that there is such a thing as the conjugial love of one man with one wife, into which are gathered all the blessings, happiness, delights, amenities and pleasures of heaven; and that this love is from the Lord, according to the reception of good and truth from Him, that is, according to the state of the Church.

[10] Hearing this, they turned away and said, "These men are insane; they enter into the ether with their judgment and, conjecturing vanities, act like little children."

Thereupon, turning to us they said, "We will give a straight answer to your windy conjectures and dreams." They then said: "What has conjugial love in common with religion and with inspiration from God? Is not that love with every man according to the state of his potency? And is it not just as much with those who are outside the Church as with those who are within it? just as much with Gentiles as with Christians? nay, just as much with the impious as with the pious? And has not everyone the strength of that love from heredity, or from good health, or from temperance of life, or from the heat of the climate? Can it not also be strengthened and stimulated by medicines? Is it not the same with beasts, especially birds, which love in pairs? Is not that love carnal? and what has a carnal matter in common with the spiritual state of the Church? As to the ultimate effect, does love with a wife differ in the least from love with a harlot? Is not the lust the same? and the delight the same? Therefore it is wrongful to deduce the origin of conjugial love from the holy things of the Church."

[11] On hearing this, We said to them: "You are reasoning from the heat of lasciviousness and not from conjugial love. You are wholly ignorant of what conjugial love is because with you it is cold. From what you have said, we are assured that you are of that Age which has its name from and consists of iron and clay which do not cohere, according to the prediction by Daniel (Daniel 2:43); for you make conjugial love and scortatory love to be one and the same thing. Do these two loves cohere any more than iron and clay? You are believed to be wise and are called wise; yet you are anything but wise."

Inflamed with anger at hearing these words, they raised a cry and called the crowd together to cast us out. But then, by power given us by the Lord, we stretched forth our hands, and lo, the fiery flying serpents, vipers, and hydras from the desert were at hand, and also the dragons; and they rushed in and filled the city, from which the inhabitants fled in terror.

The angel then told me: "New arrivals from the earth come into this region every day and, by turns, the former inhabitants are sent away and cast down into gulfs at the west which at a distance appear like pools of fire and brimstone. All who are there are spiritual adulterers and also natural."

CL 80. The Sixth Memorable Relation:

When these words had been spoken, I looked to the border of the west, and behold, there appeared pools as though of fire and brimstone, and I asked the angel, "Why do the hells there appear like that?"

He answered: "They appear as pools from their falsifications of truth, water in the spiritual sense being truth; and fire, as it were, appears around and within them, from the love of evil, and brimstone from the love of what is false. These three, the pool, fire, and brimstone, are appearances because they are correspondences of the evil loves in which they are. All who are there are shut up in eternal workhouses where they labour for food, clothing, and bed; and when they do evil, they are severely and miserably punished."

[2] I further asked the angel, "Why did you say that in that place are spiritual and natural adulterers? Why not say evil doers and the impious?" He answered, "Because all who repute adulteries as nothing, that is, who believe from confirmation that they are not sins and so commit them of set purpose, are at heart evil doers and impious; for the human conjugial and religion go together in even pace. Every step and every move made from religion and into religion is also a step and a move made from the conjugial which is peculiar and proper to the Christian, and into the conjugial."

To the question, "What is that conjugial?" he said, "It is the desire to live with one wife alone; and a Christian has this desire according to his religion."

[3] After this I grieved in spirit that marriages, which in the ancient Ages had been most holy, are so hopelessly changed into adulteries. And the angel said: "It is the same at this day with religion; for the Lord says:

In the consummation of the age there shall be the abomination of desolation foretold by Daniel. And there shall be great affliction, such as hath not been from the beginning of the world. (Matt. 24:15, 21).

The abomination of desolation signifies the falsification and deprivation of all truth; affliction signifies the state of the Church infested by evils and falses; and the consummation of the age, of which these words are spoken, signifies the last time or end of the Church. The end is now; for there is no truth left which has not been falsified, and falsification of truth is spiritual whoredom which acts as one with natural whoredom because they cleave together."

CL 81. As we were talking about these things, and grieving, suddenly there appeared a stream of light powerfully affecting my eyes. I therefore looked up, and lo, the whole heaven above us appeared luminous, and from east to west in a long series was heard therefrom a glorification. The angel then said to me,"That glorification is a glorification of the Lord, which is being made by angels of the eastern and western heavens on account of His advent." From the southern and northern heavens only a gentle murmur was heard.

Because the angel understood all this, he told me, first that glorifications and celebrations of the Lord are made from the Word because then they are made from the Lord, He being the Word, that is, the Divine Truth therein. He then added: "Now, in particular, they are glorifying and celebrating the Lord by these words spoken by Daniel the prophet:

Thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves through the seed of man, but they shall not cohere. But in those days, the God of the heavens shall make to arise a kingdom which shall not be destroyed for ages. It shall break in pieces and consume all those kingdoms; but itself shall stand for ages (Dan. 2:43, 44)."

[2] After this I heard, as it were, the sound of a song, and more deeply in the east, I saw that the sparkling of the light was more brilliant than before; so I asked the angel, "By what are they glorifying there." He said: "By these words in Daniel:

I was seeing in the visions of the night, and behold, with the clouds of heaven, one coming like unto the SON OF MAN; and unto Him was given dominion and a kingdom, and all peoples and nations shall worship Him. His dominion is the dominion of an age which shall not pass away, and His kingdom which shall not perish (Dan. 7:13, 14).

In addition to the above, they are celebrating the Lord from these words in the Apocalypse:

To JESUS CHRIST be glory and strength. Behold, He cometh with clouds. He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last, who is, who was, and who is to come, the Almighty. I; John, heard this from the SON OF MAN out of the midst of the seven candlesticks (Apoc. 1:5-7, 8, 9, 10-13; 22:13)."

And also from the words in (Matthew 24:30, 31).

[3] I again looked into the eastern heaven. On the right side it had become luminous, and the luminosity entered the southern expanse. Hearing a sweet sound, I asked the angel, "What of the Lord are they glorifying there?" He said: "These words in the Apocalypse:

I saw a new heaven and a new earth. And I saw the holy city, the New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as A BRIDE (ADORNED) FOR HER HUSBAND. And the angel spake with me and said, Come hither, I will show thee THE BRIDE, THE LAMB'S WIFE. And he carried me away in the spirit upon a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem (Apoc. 21:1, 2, 9, 10).

And also these:

I JESUS am the bright and morning Star. And the Spirit and the bride say, COME; AND HE SAID, YEA, I COME QUICKLY. Amen. Yea, COME, LORD JESUS." (Apoc 22:16, 17, 20).

[4] After these and other glorifications, then, from the east of heaven to the west and also from the south to the north, was heard a general glorification. And I asked the angel, "What is it now?" He said: "These words from the Prophets:

Let all flesh know that I, JEHOVAH, AM THY SAVIOUR AND THY REDEEMER (Isa. 49:26).

Thus saith JEHOVAH, the King of Israel, and HIS REDEEMER, JEHOVAH ZEBAOTH, I am the first and the last, and BESIDE ME THERE IS NO GOD (Isa. 44:6).

It shall be said in that day, LO, THIS IS OUR GOD; we have waited for him that he should deliver us. THIS IS JEHOVAH, WE HAVE WAITED FOR HIM (Isa. 25:9).

The voice of one crying in the wilderness, prepare ye the way of JEHOVAH. Behold, the LORD JEHOVAH cometh in strength. He shall feed his flock like A SHEPHERD (Isa. 40:3, 5, 10, 11).

Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and his name shall be (called) Wonderful, Counsellor, GOD, Hero FATHER OF ETERNITY, Prince of peace. (Isa. 9:6).

Behold, the days come, and I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, a King, who shall reign. Ad this is his name, JEHOVAH OUR JUSTICE (Jer. 23:5, 6; 33:15, 16).

JEHOVAH ZEBAOTH is his name; and THY REDEEMER, the Holy One of Israel, THE GOD OF THE WHOLE EARTH SHALL HE BE CALLED. (Isa. 54:5).


[5] Hearing and understanding these glorifications, my heart exulted, and I went home in joy. There, from the state of the spirit I returned into that of the body, in which state I wrote down what had been seen and heard. To this I now add the following: After His advent, conjugial love will be raised up anew by the Lord, such as it was with the ancients; for this love is from the Lord alone and is with those who are made spiritual by Him through the Word.

CL 82. After this, a man from the northern quarter rushed up in a vehement mood and looked at me with a threatening countenance. Addressing me in an excited tone, he then said: "Are you the man who wishes to seduce the world by establishing a New Church, which you understand to be meant by the New Jerusalem about to come down from God out of heaven? and by teaching that to those who embrace the doctrinals of that Church, the Lord will grant love truly conjugial, the delights and felicity of which you exalt to heaven? Is not that a fiction? and do you not offer it as a bait and enticement for the acceptance of your novelties? But tell me briefly what those doctrinals of the New Church are, and I will see whether they are concordant or discordant."

I replied: "The doctrinals of the Church which is meant by the New Jerusalem are these:

1. That there is one God, in whom is the Divine Trinity, and that He is the Lord Jesus Christ.

2. That saving faith is to believe in Him.

3. That evils are to be shunned because they are of the devil and from the devil.

4. That goods are to be done because they are of God and from God.

5. That these are to be done by man as of himself, but that he must believe that they are done by the Lord with him and through him."

[2] On hearing this, the man's fury abated for a few moments; but after some deliberation, he again looked at me with a grim countenance and said, "Are these five precepts the doctrinals of the faith and charity of the New Church?" and I answered, "They are."

He then asked sharply, "How can you demonstrate the first: That there is one God, in whom is the Divine Trinity, and that He is the Lord Jesus Christ?" I said: "I demonstrate it thus: Is not God one and indivisible? is there not a Trinity? If God is one and indivisible, is He not one Person? if one Person, is not the Trinity in that Person? That He is the Lord Jesus Christ, I demonstrate by the following:

That He was conceived of God the Father (Luke 1:34, 35);

that as to His soul He is God, and hence, as He himself says,

that the Father and He are one (John 10:30);

that He is in the Father and the Father in Him (John 14:10, 11);

that he that sees Him and knows Him, sees and knows the Father (John 14:7, 9);

that no one sees and knows the Father save He who is in the bosom of the Father (John 1:18);

that all things of the Father are His (John 3:35; 16:15);

that He is the way, the Truth, and the Life, and no man comes to the Father save by Him (John 14:6),

thus by Him because He is in Him; and, according to Paul, that

in Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Col. 2:9).

Furthermore we are taught that

He has power over all flesh (John 17:2).

and that

He has all power in heaven and on earth (Matt. 28:18).

From these passages it follows that He is the God of heaven and earth."

[3] He then asked me, "How do you demonstrate the second: That saving faith is to believe in Him?" I replied: "I demonstrate it by these words of the Lord Himself:

This is the will of the Father, that all who believe in the Son shall have everlasting life. (John 6:40).

God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16).

He that believeth in the Son hath everlasting life; but he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him." (John 3:36).

[4] He then said, "Demonstrate also the third and those that follow." I answered: "What need is there to demonstrate that evils are to be shunned because they are of the devil and from the devil? that goods are to be done because they are of God and from God? and that these are to be done by man as of himself, yet that he must believe that they are done by the Lord with him and through him? That these three doctrinals are true, is confirmed by the whole Sacred Scripture from beginning to end; for in one sum, what else does the Scripture contain save the shunning of evils, the doing of goods, and the believing in the Lord God? Moreover, without these three, there is no religion. Is not religion a matter of life? and what is life but the shunning of evils and the doing of goods? and how can a man do the latter and shun the former except as of himself? Therefore, if you remove these doctrinals from the Church, you remove the Sacred Scripture, and you also remove religion, and when these are removed from the Church, it is not a Church."

On hearing this, the man withdrew and pondered. Yet he departed in indignation.

Conjugial Love previous · next Author:  E. Swedenborg (1688-1772). www.biblemeanings.info