Spiritual Meaning of

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The signification of height, is degrees in respect to good, and in respect to truth. Height has this signification because all good and the derivative truth proceed from the Lord, and the Lord is in the highest, and is therefore called the Highest (AR 8153); for He is the sun of heaven (AR 5097, 8812), and the sun is above the' heavens, and is the center from which the universal heaven that is beneath comes forth and subsists. All the heights in heaven, being determined from its sun as the center, are differences of good and of the derivative truth. Consequently they who are in the inmost heaven are nearer to the Lord, because they are in the good of love to Him; thus are in good above all others. Those who are in the middle heaven are more distant from Him, because they are in a lower good; and still more distant are those who are in the ultimate heaven. But those who are in hell have been altogether removed from the Lord, because they are in evil and the derivative falsity. These do not even look toward the sun, but backward from it; and therefore when they are looked at by the angels, they appear in an inverted position, with feet upward and head downward. Now as the distances and spaces in the other life are appearances in accordance with the states of good and the derivative truth (AR 9440), therefore in the spiritual sense height signifies degrees in respect to good, and in respect to truth, or degrees from the Highest, who is the Lord, and thus the Divine good itself.

[2] From this it is evident what is signified by height in the following passages; as in Jeremiah:--

They shall come and sing in the height of Zion, and shall flow together unto the good of Jehovah, and their soul shall be as a watered garden (Jer. 31:12);

where the height of Zion denotes celestial good, which is the good above spiritual good; and because height denotes good, therefore it is said that they shall flow together to the good of Jehovah. In Ezekiel:--

Asshur was a cedar in Lebanon. Its height was made high, and its branches became long by reason of many waters. It was beautiful in its greatness, In the length of its branches (Ezek. 31:3, 5, 7);

Asshur denotes an enlightened rational; a cedar in Lebanon, the spiritual church; and its height, the degree of good.

[3] Again:--

In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it (Ezek. 17:23).

In the mountain of My holiness, and in the mountain of the height of Israel, all the house of Israel shall serve Me (Ezek. 20:40).

The mountain of the height of Israel denotes the highest degree of good and of the derivative truth with those who are of the spiritual church. As most expressions in the Word have an opposite sense, so also has height, and in this sense it signifies the evil of the love of self, thus self-exaltation of mind; as in (Isaiah 14:14; Ezekiel 31:10, 14; 32:5; Amos. 2:9). A further reason why height denotes degrees in respect to good and the derivative truth, is that what is high signifies what is internal, and good is perfect according to the degrees toward interior things. That what is high denotes what is internal, (AR 1735, 2148, 4210, 4599).

AC 9489

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Author:  E. Swedenborg (1688-1772). Design:  I.J. Thompson, Feb 2002. www.BibleMeanings.info