HotFreeBooks.com
The Delights of Wisdom Pertaining to Conjugial Love
by Emanuel Swedenborg
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

31. It is however to be observed, that a man after death is not a natural, but a spiritual man; nevertheless he still appears in all respects like himself; and so much so, that he knows not but, that he is still in the natural world: for he has a similar body, countenance, speech, and senses; for he has a similar affection and thought, or will and understanding. He is indeed actually not similar, because he is a spiritual, and consequently an interior man; but the difference does not appear to him, because he cannot compare his spiritual state with his former natural state, having put off the latter, and being in the former; therefore I have often heard such persons say, that they know not but that they are in the former world, with this difference, however, that they no longer see those whom they had left in that world; but that they see those who had departed out of it, or were deceased. The reason why they now see the latter and not the former, is, because they are no longer natural men, but spiritual or substantial; and a spiritual or substantial man sees a spiritual or substantial man, as a natural or material man sees a natural or material man, but not vice versa, on account of the difference between what is substantial and what is material, which is like the difference between what is prior and what is posterior; and what is prior, being in itself purer, cannot appear to what is posterior, which in itself is grosser; nor can what is posterior, being grosser, appear to what is prior, which in itself is purer; consequently an angel cannot appear to a man of this world, nor a man of this world to an angel. The reason why a man after death is a spiritual or substantial man, is, because this spiritual or substantial man lay inwardly concealed in the natural or material man; which natural or material man was to it as a covering, or as a skin about to be cast off; and when the covering or skin is cast off, the spiritual or substantial man comes forth, a purer, interior, and more perfect man. That the spiritual man is still a perfect man, notwithstanding his being invisible to the natural man, is evident from the Lord's being seen by the apostles after his resurrection, when he appeared, and presently he did not appear; and yet he was a man like to himself both when seen and when not seen: it is also said, that when they saw him, their eyes were opened.

32. II. IN THIS CASE A MALE IS A MALE, AND A FEMALE A FEMALE. Since a man (homo) lives a man after death, and man is male and female, and there is such a distinction between the male principle and the female principle, that the one cannot be changed into the other, it follows, that after death the male lives a male, and the female a female, each being a spiritual man. It is said that the male principle cannot be changed into the female principle, nor the female into the male, and that therefore after death the male is a male, and the female a female; but as it is not known in what the masculine principle essentially consists, and in what the feminine, it may be expedient briefly to explain it. The essential distinction between the two is this: in the masculine principle, love is inmost, and its covering is wisdom; or, what is the same, the masculine principle is love covered (or veiled) by wisdom; whereas in the feminine principle, the wisdom of the male is inmost, and its covering is love thence derived; but this latter love is feminine, and is given by the Lord to the wife through the wisdom of the husband; whereas the former love is masculine, which is the love of growing wise, and is given by the Lord to the husband according to the reception of wisdom. It is from this circumstance, that the male is the wisdom of love, and the female is the love of that wisdom; therefore from creation there is implanted in each a love of conjunction so as to become a one; but on this subject more will be said in the following pages. That the female principle is derived from the male, or that the woman was taken out of the man, is evident from these words in Genesis: Jehovah God took out one of the man's ribs, and closed up the flesh in the place thereof; and he builded the rib, which he had taken out of the man, into a woman; and he brought her to the man; and the man said, This is bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; hence she shall be called Eve, because she was taken out of man, chap. ii. 21-23: the signification of a rib and of flesh will be shewn elsewhere.

33. From this primitive formation it follows, that by birth the character of the male is intellectual, and that the female character partakes more of the will principle; or, what amounts to the same, that the male is born into the affection of knowing, understanding, and growing wise, and the female into the love of conjoining herself with that affection in the male. And as the interiors form the exteriors to their own likeness, and the masculine form is the form of intellect, and the feminine is the form of the love of that intellect, therefore the male and the female differ as to the features of the face, the tone of the voice, and the form of the body; the male having harder features, a harsher tone of voice, a stronger body, and also a bearded chin, and in general a form less beautiful than that of the female; they differ also in their gestures and manners; in a word, they are not exactly similar in a single respect; but still, in every particular of each, there is a tendency to conjunction; yea, the male principle in the male, is male in every part of his body, even the most minute, and also in every idea of his thought, and every spark of his affection; the same is true of the female principle in the female; and since of consequence the one cannot be changed into the other, it follows, that after death a male is a male, and a female a female.

34. III. EVERY ONE'S PECULIAR LOVE REMAINS WITH HIM AFTER DEATH. Man knows that there is such a thing as love; but he does not know what love is. He knows that there is such a thing from common discourse; as when it is said, that such a one loves me, that a king loves his subjects, and subjects love their king; that a husband loves his wife, and a mother her children, and vice versa; also when it is said, that any one loves his country, his fellow citizens, and his neighbour; in like manner of things abstracted from persons; as when it is said that a man loves this or that. But although the term love is thus universally applied in conversation, still there is scarcely any one that knows what love is: even while meditating on the subject, as he is not then able to form any distinct idea concerning it, and thus not to fix it as present in the light of the understanding, because of its having relation not to light but to heat, he either denies its reality, or he calls it merely an influent effect arising from the sight, the hearing, and the conversation, and thus accounts for the motions to which it gives birth; not being at all aware, that love is his very life, not only the common life of his whole body and of all his thoughts, but also the life of all their particulars. A wise man may perceive this from the consideration, that if the affection of love be removed, he is incapable both of thinking and acting; for in proportion as that affection grows cold, do not thought, speech, and action grow cold also? and in proportion as that affection grows warm, do not they also grow warm in the same degree? Love therefore is the heat of the life of man (hominis), or his vital heat. The heat of the blood, and also its redness, are from this source alone. The fire of the angelic sun, which is pure love, produces this effect.

35. That every one has his own peculiar love, or a love distinct from that of another; that is, that no two men have exactly the same love, may appear from the infinite variety of human countenances, the countenance being a type of the love; for it is well known that the countenance is changed and varied according to the affection of love; a man's desires also, which are of love, and likewise his joys and sorrows, are manifested in the countenance. From this consideration it is evident, that every man is his own peculiar love; yea, that he is the form of his love. It is however to be observed, that the interior man, which is the same with his spirit which lives after death, is the form of his love, and not so the exterior man which lives in this world, because the latter has learnt from infancy to conceal the desires of his love; yea, to make a pretence and show of desires which are different from his own.

36. The reason why every one's peculiar love remains with him after death, is, because, as was said just above, n. 34, love is a man's (hominis) life; and hence it is the man himself. A man also is his own peculiar thought, thus his own peculiar intelligence and wisdom; but these make a one with his love; for a man thinks from this love and according to it; yea, if he be in freedom, he speaks and acts in like manner; from which it may appear, that love is the esse or essence of a man's life, and that thought is the existere or existence of his life thence derived; therefore speech and action, which are said to flow from the thought, do not flow from the thought, but from the love through the thought. From much experience I have learned that a man after death is not his own peculiar thought, but that he is his own peculiar affection and derivative thought; or that he is his own peculiar love and derivative intelligence; also that a man after death puts off everything which does not agree with his love; yea, that he successively puts on the countenance, the tone of voice, the speech, the gestures, and the manners of the love proper to his life: hence it is, that the whole heaven is arranged in order according to all the varieties of the affections of the love of good, and the whole hell according to all the affections of the love of evil.

37. IV. THE LOVE OF THE SEX ESPECIALLY REMAINS; AND WITH THOSE WHO GO TO HEAVEN, WHICH IS THE CASE WITH ALL WHO BECOME SPIRITUAL HERE ON EARTH, CONJUGIAL LOVE REMAINS. The reason why the love of the sex remains with man (homo) after death, is, because after death a male is a male and a female a female; and the male principle in the male is male (or masculine) in the whole and in every part thereof; and so is the female principle in the female; and there is a tendency to conjunction in all their parts, even the most singular; and as this conjunctive tendency was implanted from creation, and thence perpetually influences, it follows, that the one desires and seeks conjunction with the other. Love, considered itself, is a desire and consequent tendency to conjunction; and conjugial love to conjunction into a one; for the male-man and the female-man were so created, that from two they may become as it were one man, or one flesh; and when they become a one, then, taken together they are a man (homo) in his fulness; but without such conjunction, they are two, and each is a divided or half-man. Now as the above conjunctive tendency lies concealed in the inmost of every part of the male, and of every part of the female, and the same is true of the faculty and desire to be conjoined together into a one, it follows, that the mutual and reciprocal love of the sex remains with men (homines) after death.

38. We speak distinctively of the love of the sex and of conjugial love, because the one differs from the other. The love of the sex exists with the natural man; conjugial love with the spiritual man. The natural man loves and desires only external conjunctions, and the bodily pleasures thence derived; whereas the spiritual man loves and desires internal conjunctions and the spiritual satisfactions thence derived; and these satisfactions he perceives are granted with one wife, with whom he can perpetually be more and more joined together into a one: and the more he enters into such conjunction the more he perceives his satisfactions ascending in a similar degree, and enduring to eternity; but respecting anything like this the natural man has no idea. This then is the reason why it is said, that after death conjugial love remains with those who go to heaven, which is the case with all those who become spiritual here on earth.

39. V. THESE THINGS FULLY CONFIRMED BY OCULAR DEMONSTRATION. That a man (homo) lives as a man after death, and that in this case a male is a male, and a female a female; and that every one's peculiar love remains with him after death, especially the love of the sex and conjugial love, are positions which I have wished hitherto to confirm by such arguments as respect the understanding, and are called rational; but since man (homo) from his infancy, in consequence of what has been taught him by his parents and masters, and afterwards by the learned and the clergy, has been induced to believe, that he shall not live a man after death until the day of the last judgement, which has now been expected for six thousand years; and several have regarded this article of faith as one which ought to be believed, but not intellectually conceived, it was therefore necessary that the above positions should be confirmed also by ocular proofs; otherwise a man who believes only the evidence of his senses, in consequence of the faith previously implanted, would object thus: "If men lived men after death, I should certainly see and hear them: who has ever descended from heaven, or ascended from hell, and given such information?" In reply to such objections it is to be observed, that it never was possible, nor can it ever be, that any angel of heaven should descend, or any spirit of hell ascend, and speak with any man, except with those who have the interiors of the mind or spirit opened by the Lord; and this opening of the interiors cannot be fully effected except with those who have been prepared by the Lord to receive the things which are of spiritual wisdom: on which accounts it has pleased the Lord thus to prepare me, that the state of heaven and hell, and of the life of men after death, might not remain unknown, and be laid asleep in ignorance, and at length buried in denial. Nevertheless, ocular proofs on the subjects above mentioned, by reason of their copiousness, cannot here be adduced; but they have been already adduced in the treatise on HEAVEN and HELL, and in the CONTINUATION RESPECTING THE SPIRITUAL WORLD, and afterwards in the APOCALYPSE REVEALED; but especially, in regard to the present subject of marriages, in the MEMORABLE RELATIONS which are annexed to the several paragraphs or chapters of this work.

40. VI. CONSEQUENTLY THERE ARE MARRIAGES IN HEAVEN. This position having been confirmed by reason, and at the same time by experience, needs no further demonstration.

41. VII. SPIRITUAL NUPTIALS ARE TO BE UNDERSTOOD BY THE LORD'S WORDS, "AFTER THE RESURRECTION THEY ARE NOT GIVEN IN MARRIAGE." In the Evangelists are these words, Certain of the Sadducees, who say that there is no resurrection, asked Jesus, saying, Master, Moses wrote, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall take his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. Now there were with us seven brethren and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and having no issue, left his wife unto his brother; likewise the second also, and the third unto the seventh; last of all the woman died also; therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? But Jesus answering, said unto them, The sons of this generation marry, and are given in marriage; but those who shall be accounted worthy to attain to another generation, and the resurrection from the dead, shall neither marry nor be given in marriage, neither can they die any more; for they are like unto the angels, and are the sons of God, being sons of the resurrection. But that the dead rise again, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he called the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; for he is not the God of the dead, but of the living; for all live unto him, Luke xx. 27-38, Matt. xxii. 22-32; Mark xii. 18-27. By these words the Lord taught two things; first, that a man (homo) rises again after death; and secondly, that in heaven they are not given in marriage. That a man rises again after death, he taught by these words, God is not the God of the dead, but of the living, and when he said that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, are alive: he taught the same also in the parable concerning the rich man in hell, and Lazarus in heaven, Luke xvi. 22-31. Secondly, that in heaven they are not given in marriage, he taught by these words, "Those who shall be accounted worthy to attain to another generation, neither marry nor are given in marriage." That none other than spiritual nuptials are here meant, is very evident from the words which immediately follow—"neither can they die any more; because they are like unto the angels, and are the sons of God, being sons of the resurrection." Spiritual nuptials mean conjunction with the Lord, which is effected on earth; and when it is effected on earth, it is also effected in the heavens; therefore in the heavens there is no repetition of nuptials, nor are they again given in marriage: this is also meant by these words, "The sons of this generation marry and are given in marriage; but those who are accounted worthy to attain to another generation, neither marry nor are given in marriage". The latter are also called by the Lord "sons of nuptials" Matt, ix. 15; Mark ii. 19; and in this place, angels, sons of God, and sons of the resurrection. That to celebrate nuptials, signifies to be joined with the Lord, and that to enter into nuptials is to be received into heaven by the Lord, is manifest from the following passages: The kingdom of heaven is like unto a man, a king, who made a marriage (nuptials) his son, and sent out servants and invited to the marriage. Matt. xxii. 2-14. The kingdom of heaven is like unto ten virgins, who went forth to meet the bridegroom: of whom five being prepared entered into the marriage (nuptials), Matt. xxv. 1, and the following verses. That the Lord here meant himself, is evident from verse 13, where it is said, Watch ye; because ye know not the day and hour in which the Son of Man will come: also from the Revelation, The time of the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready; blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb, xix. 7, 9. That there is a spiritual meaning in everything which the Lord spake, has been fully shewn in the DOCTRINE OF THE NEW JERUSALEM CONCERNING THE SACRED SCRIPTURE, published at Amsterdam in the year 1763.

* * * * *

42. To the above I shall add two MEMORABLE RELATIONS RESPECTING THE SPIRITUAL WORLD. The first is as follows: One morning I was looking upwards into heaven and saw over me three expanses one above another; I saw that the first expanse, which was nearest, opened, and presently the second which was above it, and lastly the third which was highest; and by virtue of illustration thence, I perceived, that above the first expanse were the angels who compose the first or lowest heaven; above the second expanse were the angels who compose the second or middle heaven; and above the third expanse were the angels who compose the third or highest heaven. I wondered at first what all this meant: and presently I heard from heaven a voice as of a trumpet, saying, "We have perceived, and now see, that you are meditating on CONJUGIAL LOVE; and we are aware that no one on earth as yet knows what true conjugial love is in its origin and in its essence; and yet it is of importance that it should be known: therefore it has pleased the Lord to open the heavens to you in order that illustrating light and consequent perception may flow into the interiors of your mind. With us in the heavens, especially in the third heaven, our heavenly delights are principally derived from conjugial love; therefore, in consequence of leave granted us, we will send down to you a conjugial pair for your inspection and observation;" and lo! instantly there appeared a chariot descending from the highest or third heaven, in which I saw one angel; but as it approached I saw therein two. The chariot at a distance glittered before my eyes like a diamond, and to it were harnessed young horses white as snow; and those who sat in the chariot held in their hands two turtle-doves, and called to me, saying, "Do you wish us to come nearer to you? but in this case take heed, lest the radiance, which is from the heaven whence we have descended, and is of a flaming quality, penetrate too interiorly; by its influence the superior ideas of your understanding, which are in themselves heavenly, may indeed be illustrated; but these ideas are ineffable in the world in which you dwell: therefore what you are about to hear, receive rationally, that you may explain it so that it may be understood." I replied, "I will observe your caution; come nearer:" so they came nearer; and lo! it was a husband and his wife; who said, "We are a conjugial pair: we have lived happy in heaven from the earliest period, which you call the golden age, and have continued during that time in the same bloom of youth in which you now see us." I viewed each of them attentively, because I perceived they represented conjugial love in its life and in its decoration; in its life in their faces, and in its decoration in their raiment; for all the angels are affections of love in a human form. The ruling affection itself shines forth from their faces; and from the affection, and according to it, the kind and quality of their raiment is derived and determined: therefore it is said in heaven, that every one is clothed by his own affection. The husband appeared of a middle age, between manhood and youth: from his eyes darted forth sparkling light derived from the wisdom of love; by virtue of which light his face was radiant from its inmost ground; and in consequence of such radiance the surface of his skin had a kind of refulgence, whereby his whole face was one resplendent comeliness. He was dressed in an upper robe which reached down to his feet and underneath it was a vesture of hyacinthine blue, girded about with a golden band, upon which were three precious stones, two sapphires on the sides, and a carbuncle in the middle; his stockings were of bright shining linen, with threads of silver interwoven, and his shoes were of velvet: such was the representative form of conjugial love with the husband. With the wife it was this; I saw her face, and I did not see it; I saw it as essential beauty, and I did not see it because this beauty was inexpressible; for in her face there was a splendor of flaming light, such as the angels in the third heaven enjoy, and this light made my sight dim; so that I was lost in astonishment: she observing this addressed me, saying, "What do you see?" I replied, "I see nothing but conjugial love and the form thereof; but I see, and I do not see." Hereupon she turned herself sideways from her husband; and then I was enabled to view her more attentively. Her eyes were bright and sparkling from the light of her own heaven, which light, as was said, is of a flaming quality, which it derives from the love of wisdom; for in that heaven wives love their husbands from their wisdom, and in it, and husbands love their wives from that love of wisdom and in it, as directed towards themselves; and thus they are united. This was the origin of her beauty; which was such that it would be impossible for any painter to imitate and exhibit it in its form, for he has no colors bright and vivid enough to express its lustre; nor is it in the power of his art to depict such beauty: her hair was arranged in becoming order so as to correspond with her beauty; and in it were inserted diadems of flowers; she had a necklace of carbuncles, from which hung a rosary of chrysolites; and she wore pearl bracelets: her upper robe was scarlet, and underneath it she had a purple stomacher, fastened in front with clasps of rubies; but what surprised me was, that the colors varied according to her aspect in regard to her husband, being sometimes more glittering, sometimes less; if she were looking towards him, more, if sideways, less. When I had made these observations, they again talked with me; and when the husband was speaking, he spoke at the same time as from his wife; and when the wife was speaking, she spoke at the same time as from her husband; such was the union of their minds from whence speech flows; and on this occasion I also heard the tone of voice of conjugial love; inwardly it was simultaneous, and it proceeded from the delights of a state of peace and innocence. At length they said, "We are recalled; we must depart;" and instantly they again appeared to be conveyed in a chariot as before. They went by a paved way through flowering shrubberies, from the beds of which arose olive and orange-trees laden with fruit: and when they approached their own heaven, they were met by several virgins, who welcomed and introduced them.

43. After this I saw an angel from that heaven holding in his hand a roll of parchment, which he unfolded, saying, "I see that you are meditating on conjugial love; in this parchment are contained arcana of wisdom respecting that love, which have never yet been disclosed in the world. They are now to be disclosed, because it is of importance that they should be: those arcana abound more in our heaven than in the rest, because we are in the marriage of love and wisdom; but I prophesy that none will appropriate to themselves that love, but those who are received by the Lord into the New Church, which is the New Jerusalem." Having said this, the angel let down the unfolded parchment, which a certain angelic spirit received from him, and laid on a table in a certain closet, which he instantly locked, and holding out the key to me, said, "Write."

44. THE SECOND MEMORABLE RELATION. I once saw three spirits recently deceased, who were wandering about in the world of spirits, examining whatever came in their way, and inquiring concerning it. They were all amazement to find that men lived altogether as before, and that the objects they saw were similar to those they had seen before: for they knew that they were departed out of the former or natural world, and that in that world they believed that they should not live as men until after the day of the last judgement, when they should be again clothed with the flesh and bones that had been laid in the tomb; therefore, in order to remove all doubt of their being really and truly men, they by turns viewed and touched themselves and others, and felt the surrounding objects and by a thousand proofs convinced themselves that they now were men as in the former world; besides which they saw each other in a brighter light, and the surrounding objects in superior splendor, and thus their vision was more perfect. At that instant two angelic spirits happening to meet them, accosted them, saying, "Whence are you?" They replied, "We have departed out of a world, and again we live in a world; thus we have removed from one world to another; and this surprises us." Hereupon the three novitiate spirits questioned the two angelic spirits concerning heaven; and as two of the three novitiates were youths, and there darted from their eyes as it were a sparkling fire of lust for the sex, the angelic spirit said, "Possibly you have seen some females;" and they replied in the affirmative; and as they made inquiry respecting heaven, the angelic spirits gave them the following information: "In heaven there is every variety of magnificent and splendid objects, and such things as the eye had never seen; there are also virgins and young men; virgins of such beauty that they may be called personifications of beauty, and young men of such morality that they may be called personifications of morality; moreover the beauty of the virgins and the morality of the young men correspond to each other, as forms mutually suited to each other." Hereupon the two novitiates asked, "Are there in heaven human forms altogether similar to those in the natural world?" And it was replied, "They are altogether similar; nothing is wanting in the male, and nothing in the female; in a word, the male is a male, and the female a female, in all the perfection of form in which they were created: retire, if you please, and examine if you are deficient in anything, and whether you are not a complete man as before." Again, the novitiates said, "We have been told in the world we have left, that in heaven they are not given in marriage, because they are angels:—is there then the love of the sex there?" And the angelic spirits replied, "In heaven your love of the sex does not exist; but we have the angelic love of the sex, which is chaste, and devoid all libidinous allurement." Hereupon the novitiates observed, "If there be a love of the sex devoid of all allurement, what in such cases is the love of the sex?" And while they were thinking about this love they sighed, and said, "Oh, how dry and insipid is the joy of heaven! What young man, if this be the case, can possibly wish for heaven? Is not such love barren and devoid of life?" To this the angelic spirits replied, with a smile, "The angelic love of the sex, such as exists in heaven, is nevertheless full of the inmost delights: it is the most agreeable expansion of all the principles of the mind, and thence of all the parts of the breast, existing inwardly in the breast, and sporting therein as the heart sports with the lungs, giving birth thereby to respiration, tone of voice, and speech; so that the intercourse between the sexes, or between youths and virgins, is an intercourse of essential celestial sweets, which are pure. All novitiates, on ascending into heaven, are examined as to the quality of their chastity, being let into the company of virgins, the beauties of heaven, who from their tone of voice, their speech, their face, their eyes, their gesture, and their exhaling sphere, perceive what is their quality in regard to the love of the sex; and if their love be unchaste, they instantly quit them, and tell their fellow angels that they have seen satyrs or priapuses. The new comers also undergo a change, and in the eyes of the angels appear rough and hairy, and with feet like calves' or leopards', and presently they are cast down again, lest by their lust they should defile the heavenly atmosphere." On receiving this information, the two novitiates again said, "According to this, there is no love of the sex in heaven; for what is a chaste love of the sex, but a love deprived of the essence of its life? And must not all the intercourse of youths and virgins, in such case, consist of dry insipid joys? We are not stocks and stones, but perceptions and affections of life." To this the angelic spirits indignantly replied, "You are altogether ignorant what a chaste love of the sex is; because as yet you are not chaste. This love is the very essential delight of the mind, and thence of the heart; and not at the same time of the flesh beneath the heart. Angelic chastity, which is common to each sex, prevents the passage of that love beyond the enclosure of the heart; but within that and above it, the morality of a youth is delighted with the beauty of a virgin in the delights of the chaste love of the sex: which delights are of too interior a nature, and too abundantly pleasant, to admit of any description in words. The angels have this love of the sex, because they have conjugial love only; which love cannot exist together with the unchaste love of the sex. Love truly conjugial is chaste, and has nothing in common with unchaste love, being confined to one of the sex, and separate from all others; for it is a love of the spirit and thence of the body, and not a love of the body and thence of the spirit; that is, it is not a love infesting the spirit." On hearing this, the two young novitiates rejoiced, and said, "There still exists in heaven a love of the sex; what else is conjugial love?" But the angelic spirits replied, "Think more profoundly, weigh the matter well in your minds, and you will perceive, that your love of the sex is a love extra-conjugial, and quite different from conjugial love; the latter being as distinct from the former, as wheat is from chaff, or rather as the human principle is from the bestial. If you should ask the females in heaven, 'What is love extra-conjugial?' I take upon me to say, their reply will be, 'What do you mean? What do you say? How can you utter a question which so wounds our ears? How can a love that is not created be implanted in any one?' If you should then ask them, 'What is love truly conjugial?' I know they will reply, 'It is not the love of the sex, but the love of one of the sex; and it has no other ground of existence than this, that when a youth sees a virgin provided by the Lord, and a virgin sees a youth, they are each made sensible of a conjugial principle kindling in their hearts, and perceive that each is the other's, he hers, and she his; for love meets love and causes them to know each other, and instantly conjoins their souls, and afterwards their minds, and thence enters their bosoms, and after the nuptials penetrates further, and thus becomes love in its fulness, which grows every day into conjunction, till they are no longer two, but as it were one.' I know also that they will be ready to affirm in the most solemn manner, that they are not acquainted with any other love of the sex; for they say, 'How can there be a love of the sex, unless it be tending mutually to meet, and reciprocal, so as to seek an eternal union, which consists in two becoming one flesh?'" To this the angelic spirits added, "In heaven they are in total ignorance what whoredom is; nor do they know that it exists, or that its existence is even possible. The angels feel a chill all over the body at the idea of unchaste or extra-conjugial love; and on the other hand, they feel a genial warmth throughout the body arising from chaste or conjugial love. With the males, all the nerves lose their proper tension at the sight of a harlot, and recover it again at the sight of a wife." The three novitiates, on hearing this, asked, "Does a similar love exist between married partners in the heavens as in the earths?" The two angelic spirits replied, that it was altogether similar; and as they perceived in the novitiates an inclination to know, whether in heaven there were similar ultimate delights, they said, that they were exactly similar, but much more blessed, because angelic perception and sensation is much more exquisite than human: "and what," added they, "is the life of that love unless derived from a flow of vigor? When this vigor fails, must not the love itself also fail and grow cold? Is not this vigor the very measure, degree, and basis of that love? Is it not its beginning, its support, and its fulfilment? It is a universal law, that things primary exist, subsist, and persist from things ultimate: this is true also of that love; therefore unless there were ultimate delights, there would be no delights of conjugial love." The novitiates then asked, whether from the ultimate delights of that love in heaven any offspring were produced; and if not, to what use did those delights serve? The angelic spirit answered, that natural offspring were not produced, but spiritual offspring: and the novitiates said, "What are spiritual offspring?" They replied, "Two conjugial partners by ultimate delights are more and more united in the marriage of good and truth, which is the marriage of love and wisdom; and love and wisdom are the offspring produced therefrom: in heaven the husband is wisdom, and the wife is the love thereof, and both are spiritual; therefore, no other than spiritual offspring can be there conceived and born: hence it is that the angels, after such delights, do not experience sadness, as some do on earth, but are cheerful; and this in consequence of a continual influx of fresh powers succeeding the former, which serve for their renovation, and at the same time illustration: for all who come into heaven, return into their vernal youth, and into the vigor of that age, and thus continue to eternity." The three novitiates, on hearing this, said, "Is it not written in the Word, that in heaven they are not given in marriage, because they are angels?" To which the angelic spirits replied, "Look up into heaven and you will receive an answer:" and they asked, "Why are we to look up into heaven?" They said, "Because thence we receive all interpretations of the Word. The Word is altogether spiritual and the angels being spiritual, will teach the spiritual understanding of it." They did not wait long before heaven was opened over their heads, and two angels appeared in view, and said, "There are nuptials in the heavens, as on earth; but only with those in the heavens who are in the marriage of good and truth; nor are any other angels: therefore it is spiritual nuptials, which relate to the marriage of good and truth, that are there understood. These (viz. spiritual nuptials) take place on earth, but not after departure thence, thus not in the heavens; as it is said of the live foolish virgins, who were also invited to the nuptials, that they could not enter, because they were not in the marriage of good and truth; for they had no oil, but only lamps. Oil signifies good, and lamps truth; and to be given in marriage denotes to enter heaven, where the marriage of good and truth takes place." The three novitiates were made glad by this intelligence; and being filled with a desire of heaven, and with the hope of heavenly nuptials, they said, "We will apply ourselves with all diligence to the practice of morality and a becoming conduct of life, that we may enjoy our wishes."

* * * * *

ON THE STATE OF MARRIED PARTNERS AFTER DEATH.

45. That there are marriages in the heavens, has been shewn just above; it remains now to be considered, whether the marriage-covenant ratified in the world will remain and be in force after death, or not. As this is a question not of judgement but of experience, and as experience herein has been granted me by consociation with angels and spirits, I will here adduce it; but yet so that reason may assent thereto. To have this question determined, is also an object of the wishes and desires of all married persons; for husbands who have loved their wives, in case they die, are desirous to know whether it be well with them, and whether they shall ever meet again; and the same is true of wives in regard to their husbands. Many married pairs also wish to know beforehand whether they are to be separated after death, or to live together: those who have disagreed in their tempers, wish to know whether they are to be separated; and those who have agreed, whether they are to live together. Information on this subject then being much wished for, we will now proceed to give it in the following order: I. The love of the sex remains with every man (homo) after death, according to its interior quality; that is, such as it had been in his interior will and thought in the world. II. The same is true of conjugial love. III. Married partners most commonly meet after death, know each other, again associate and for a time live together: this is the case in the first state, thus while they are in externals as in the world. IV. But successively, as they put off their externals, and enter into their internals, they perceive what had been the quality of their love and inclination for each other, and consequently whether they can live together or not. V. If they can live together, they remain married partners; but if they cannot they separate; sometimes the husband from the wife, sometimes the wife from the husband, and sometimes each from the other. VI. In this case there is given to the man a suitable wife, and to the woman a suitable husband. VII. Married partners enjoy similar communications with each other as in the world, but more delightful and blessed, yet without prolification; in the place of which they experience spiritual prolification, which is that of love and wisdom. VIII. This is the case with those who go to heaven; but it is otherwise with those who go to hell. We now proceed to an explanation of these propositions, by which they may be illustrated and confirmed.

46. I. THE LOVE OF THE SEX REMAINS WITH EVERY MAN AFTER DEATH, ACCORDING TO ITS INTERIOR QUALITY; THAT IS, SUCH AS IT HAD BEEN IN HIS INTERIOR WILL AND THEREBY IN THE WOMAN. Every love follows a man after death, because it is the esse of his life; and the ruling love, which is the head of the rest, remains with him to eternity, and together with it the subordinate loves. The reason why they remain, is, because love properly appertains to the spirit of man, and to the body by derivation from the spirit; and a man after death becomes a spirit and thereby carries his love along with him; as love is the esse of a man's life, it is evident, that such as a man's life has been in the world, such is his lot after death. The love of the sex is the most universal of all loves, being implanted from creation in the very soul of man, from which the essence of the whole man is derived, and this for the sake of the propagation of the human race. The reason why this love chiefly remains is, because after death a male is a male, and a female a female, and because there is nothing in the soul, the mind, and the body, which is not male (or masculine) in the male, and female (or feminine) in the female; and these two (the male and female) are so created, that they have a continual tendency to conjunction, yea, to such a conjunction as to become a one. This tendency is the love of the sex, which precedes conjugial love. Now, since a conjunctive inclination is inscribed on every part and principle of the male and of the female, it follows, that this inclination cannot be destroyed and die with the body.

47. The reason why the love of the sex remains such as it was interiorly in the world, is, because every man has an internal and an external, which are also called the internal and external man; and hence there is an internal and an external will and thought. A man when he dies, quits his external, and retains his internal; for externals properly belong to his body, and internals to his spirit. Now since every man is his own love, and love resides in the spirit, it follows, that the love of the sex remains with him after death, such as it was interiorly with him; as for example, if the love interiorly had been conjugial and chaste, it remains such after death; but if it had been interiorly adulterous (anti-conjugial), it remains such also after death. It is however to be observed that the love of the sex is not the same with one person as with another; its differences are infinite: nevertheless, such as it is in any one's spirit, such it remains.

48. II. CONJUGIAL LOVE IN LIKE MANNER REMAINS SUCH AS IT HAD BEEN INTERIORLY; THAT IS, SUCH AS IT HAD BEEN IN THE MAN'S INTERIOR WILL AND THOUGHT IN THE WORLD. As the love of the sex is one thing, and conjugial love another, therefore mention is made of each; and it is said, that the latter also remains after death such as it has been internally with a man, during his abode in the world: but as few know the distinction between the love of the sex and conjugial love, therefore, before we proceed further in the subject of this treatise, it may be expedient briefly to point it out. The love of the sex is directed to several, and contracted with several of the sex; but conjugial love is directed to only one, and contracted with one of the sex; moreover, love directed to and contracted with several is a natural love; for it is common to man with beasts and birds, which are natural: but conjugial love is a spiritual love, and peculiar and proper to men; because men were created, and are therefore born to become spiritual; therefore, so far as a man becomes spiritual, so far he puts off the love of the sex, and puts on conjugial love. In the beginning of marriage the love of the sex appears as if conjoined with conjugial love; but in the progress of marriage they are separated; and in this case, with such as are spiritual, the love of the sex is removed, and conjugial love is imparted; but with such as are natural, the contrary happens. From these observations it is evident, that the love of the sex, being directed to and contracted with several and being in itself natural, yea, animal, is impure and unchaste, and being vague and indeterminate in its object, is adulterous; but the case is altogether different with conjugial love. That conjugial love is spiritual, and truly human, will manifestly appear from what follows.

[Transcriber's Note: The out-of-order section numbers which follow are in the original text, as are the asterisks which do not seem to indicate footnotes. There are several cases of this in the text, apparently indicating insertions by the author.]

47.* III. MARRIED PARTNERS MOST COMMONLY MEET AFTER DEATH, KNOW EACH OTHER, AGAIN ASSOCIATE, AND FOR A TIME LIVE TOGETHER: THIS IS THE CASE IN THE FIRST STATE, THUS WHILE THEY ARE IN EXTERNALS AS IN THE WORLD. There are two states in which a man (homo) enters after death, an external and an internal state. He comes first into his external state, and afterwards into his internal; and during the external state, married partners meet each other, (supposing they are both deceased,) know each other, and if they have lived together in the world, associate again, and for some time live together; and while they are in this state they do not know the inclination of each to the other, this being concealed in the internals of each; but afterwards, when they come into their internal state, the inclination manifests itself; and if it be in mutual agreement and sympathy, they continue to live together a conjugial life; but if it be in disagreement and antipathy, their marriage is dissolved. In case a man had had several wives, he successively joins himself with them, while he is in his external state; but when he enters into his internal state, in which lie perceives the inclinations of his love, and of what quality they are, he then either adopts one or leaves them all; for in the spiritual world, as well as in the natural, it is not allowable for any Christian to have more than one wife, as it infests and profanes religion. The case is the same with a woman that had had several husbands: nevertheless the women in this case do not join themselves to their husbands; they only present themselves, and the husbands join them to themselves. It is to be observed that husbands rarely know their wives, but that wives well know their husbands, women having an interior perception of love, and men only an exterior.

48.* IV. BUT SUCCESSIVELY, AS THEY PUT OFF THEIR EXTERNALS AND ENTER INTO THEIR INTERNALS, THEY PERCEIVE WHAT HAD BEEN THE QUALITY OF THEIR LOVE AND INCLINATION FOR EACH OTHER, AND CONSEQUENTLY WHETHER THEY CAN LIVE TOGETHER OR NOT. There is no occasion to explain this further, as it follows from what is shewn in the previous section; suffice it here to shew how a man (homo) after death puts off his externals and puts on his internals. Every one after death is first introduced into the world which is called the world of spirits, and which is intermediate between heaven and hell; and in that world he is prepared, for heaven if he is good, and for hell if he is evil. The end or design of this preparation is, that the internal and external may agree together and make a one, and not disagree and make two: in the natural world they frequently make two, and only make a one with those who are sincere in heart. That they make two is evident from the deceitful and the cunning; especially from hypocrites, flatterers, dissemblers, and liars: but in the spiritual world it is not allowable thus to have a divided mind; for whoever has been internally wicked must also be externally wicked; in like manner, whoever has been good, must be good in each principle: for every man after death becomes of such a quality as he had been interiorly, and not such as he had been exteriorly. For this end, after his decease, he is let alternately into his external and his internal; and every one, while he is in his external, is wise, that is, he wishes to appear wise, even though he be wicked; but a wicked person internally is insane. By those changes he is enabled to see his follies, and to repent of them: but if he had not repented in the world, he cannot afterwards; for he loves his follies, and wishes to remain in them: therefore he forces his external also to be equally insane: thus his internal and his external become a one; and when this is effected, he is prepared for hell. But it is otherwise with a good spirit: such a one, as in the world he had looked unto God and had repented, was more wise in his internal than in his external: in his external also, through the allurements and vanities of the world, he was sometimes led astray; therefore his external is likewise reduced to agreement with his internal, which, as was said, is wise; and when this is effected he is prepared for heaven. From these considerations it may plainly appear, how the case is in regard to putting off the external and putting on the internal after death.

49. V. IF THEY CAN LIVE TOGETHER, THEY REMAIN MARRIED PARTNERS; BUT IF THEY CANNOT, THEY SEPARATE; SOMETIMES THE HUSBAND FROM THE WIFE, SOMETIMES THE WIFE FROM THE HUSBAND, AND SOMETIMES EACH FROM THE OTHER. The reason why separations take place after death is, because the conjunctions which are made on earth are seldom made from any internal perception of love, but from an external perception, which hides the internal. The external perception of love originates in such things as regard the love of the world and of the body. Wealth and large possessions are peculiarly the objects of worldly love, while dignities and honors are those of the love of the body: besides these objects, there are also various enticing allurements, such as beauty and an external polish of manners, and sometimes even an unchasteness of character. Moreover, matrimonial engagements are frequently contracted within the particular district, city, or village, in which the parties were born, and where they live; in which case the choice is confined and limited to families that are known, and to such as are in similar circumstances in life: hence matrimonial connections made in the world are for the most part external, and not at the same time internal; when yet it is the internal conjunction, or the conjunction of souls, which constitutes a real marriage; and this conjunction is not perceivable until the man puts off the external and puts on the internal; as is the case after death. This then is the reason why separations take place, and afterwards new conjunctions are formed with such as are of a similar nature and disposition; unless these conjunctions have been provided on earth, as happens with those who from an early age have loved, have desired, and have asked of the Lord an honorable and lovely connection with one of the sex, shunning and abominating the impulses of a loose and wandering lust.

50. VI. IN THIS CASE THERE IS GIVEN TO THE MAN A SUITABLE WIFE, AND TO THE WOMAN A SUITABLE HUSBAND. The reason of this is, because no married partners can be received into heaven, so as to remain there, but such as have been interiorly united, or as are capable of being so united; for in heaven two married partners are not called two, but one angel; this is understood by the Lord's words "They are no longer two, but one flesh." The reason why no other married partners are there received is, because in heaven no others can live together in one house, and in one chamber and bed; for all in the heavens are associated according to the affinities and relationships of love, and have their habitations accordingly. In the spiritual world there are not spaces, but the appearance of spaces; and these appearances are according to the states of life of the inhabitants, which are according to their states of love; therefore in that world no one can dwell but in his own house, which is provided for him and assigned to him according to the quality of his love: if he dwells in any other, he is straitened and pained in his breast and breathing; and it is impossible for two to dwell together in the same house unless they are likenesses; neither can married partners so dwell together, unless they are mutual inclinations; if they are external inclinations, and not at the same time internal, the very house or place itself separates, and rejects and expels them. This is the reason why for those who after preparation are introduced into heaven, there is provided a marriage with a consort whose soul inclines to mutual union with the soul of another, so that they no longer wish to be two lives, but one. This is the reason why after separation there is given to the man a suitable wife and to the woman in like manner a suitable husband.

51. VII. MARRIED PAIRS ENJOY SIMILAR COMMUNICATIONS WITH EACH OTHER AS IN THE WORLD, BUT MORE DELIGHTFUL AND BLESSED, YET WITHOUT PROLIFICATION; IN THE PLACE OF WHICH THEY EXPERIENCE SPIRITUAL PROLIFICATION, WHICH IS THAT OF LOVE AND WISDOM. The reason why married pairs enjoy similar communications as in the world, is, because after death a male is a male, and a female a female, and there is implanted in each at creation an inclination to conjunction; and this inclination with man is the inclination of his spirit and thence of his body; therefore after death, when a man becomes a spirit, the same mutual inclination remains, and this cannot exist without similar communications; for after death a man is a man as before; neither is there any thing wanting either in the male or in the female: as to form they are like themselves, and also as to affections and thoughts; and what must be the necessary consequence, but that they must enjoy like communications? And as conjugial love is chaste, pure, and holy, therefore their communications are ample and complete; but on this subject see what was said in the MEMORABLE RELATION, n. 44. The reason why such communications are more delightful and blessed than in the world, is, because conjugial love, as it is the love of the spirit, becomes interior and purer, and thereby more perceivable; and every delight increases according to perception, and to such a degree that its blessedness is discernible in its delight.

52. The reason why marriages in the heavens are without prolification, and that in place thereof there is experienced spiritual prolification, which is that of love and wisdom, is, because with the inhabitants of the spiritual world, the third principle—the natural, is wanting; and it is this which contains the spiritual principles; and these without that which contains them have no consistence, like the productions of the natural world: moreover spiritual principles, considered in themselves, have relation to love and wisdom; therefore love and wisdom are the births produced from marriages in the heavens. These are called births, because conjugial love perfects an angel, uniting him with his consort, in consequence whereof he becomes more and more a man (homo) for, as was said above, two married partners in heaven are not two but one angel; wherefore by conjugial unition they fill themselves with the human principle, which consists in desiring to grow wise, and in loving whatever relates to wisdom.

53. VIII. THIS IS THE CASE WITH THOSE WHO GO TO HEAVEN; BUT IT IS OTHERWISE WITH THOSE WHO GO TO HELL. That after death a suitable wife is given to a husband, and a suitable husband to a wife, and that they enjoy delightful and blessed communications, but without prolification, except of a spiritual kind, is to be understood of those who are received into heaven and become angels; because such are spiritual, and marriages in themselves are spiritual and thence holy: but with respect to those who go to hell, they are all natural; and marriages merely natural are not marriages, but conjunctions which originate in unchaste lust. The nature and quality of such conjunctions will be shewn in the following pages, when we come to treat of the chaste and the unchaste principles, and further when we come to treat of adulterous love.

54. To what has been above related concerning the state of married partners after death, it may be expedient to add the following circumstances. I. That all those married partners who are merely natural, are separated after death; because with them the love of marriage grows cold, and the love of adultery grows warm: nevertheless after separation, they sometimes associate as married partners with others; but after a short time they withdraw from each other: and this in many cases is done repeatedly; till at length the man is made over to some harlot, and the woman to some adulterer; which is effected in an infernal prison: concerning which prison, see the APOCALYPSE REVEALED, n. 153, Sec. x., where promiscuous whoredom is forbidden each party under certain pains and penalties. II. Married partners, of whom one is spiritual and the other natural, are also separated after death; and to the spiritual is given a suitable married partner: whereas the natural one is sent to the resorts of the lascivious among his like. III. But those, who in the world have lived a single life, and have altogether alienated their minds from marriage, in case they be spiritual, remain single; but if natural, they become whoremongers. It is otherwise with those, who in their single state have desired marriage, and especially if they have solicited it without success; for such, if they are spiritual, blessed marriages are provided, but not until they come into heaven. IV. Those who in the world have been shut up in monasteries, both men and women, at the conclusion of the monastic life, which continues some time after death, are let loose and discharged, and enjoy the free indulgence of their desires, whether they are disposed to live in a married state or not: if they are disposed to live in a married state, this is granted them; but if otherwise, they are conveyed to those who live in celibacy on the side of heaven; such, however, as have indulged the fires of prohibited lust, are cast down. V. The reason why those who live in celibacy are on the side of heaven, is, because the sphere of perpetual celibacy infests the sphere of conjugial love, which is the very essential sphere of heaven; and the reason why the sphere of conjugial love is the very essential sphere of heaven, is, because it descends from the heavenly marriage of the Lord and the church.

* * * * *

55. To the above, I shall add two MEMORABLE RELATIONS: the FIRST is this. On a certain time I heard from heaven the sweetest melody, arising from a song that was sung by wives and virgins in heaven. The sweetness of their singing was like the affection of some kind of love flowing forth harmoniously. Heavenly songs are in reality sonorous affections, or affections expressed and modified by sounds; for as the thoughts are expressed by speech, so the affections are expressed by songs; and from the measure and flow of the modulation, the angels perceive the object of the affection. On this occasion there were many spirits about me; and some of them informed me that they heard this delightful melody, and that it was the melody of some lovely affection, the object of which they did not know: they therefore made various conjectures about it, but in vain. Some conjectured that the singing expressed the affection of a bridegroom and bride when they sign the marriage-articles; some that it expressed the affection of a bridegroom and a bride at the solemnizing of the nuptials; and some that it expressed the primitive love of a husband and a wife. But at that instant there appeared in the midst of them an angel from heaven, who said, that they were singing the chaste love of the sex. Hereupon some of the bystanders asked, "What is the chaste love of the sex?" And the angel answered, "It is the love which a man bears towards a beautiful and elegant virgin or wife, free from every lascivious idea, and the same love experienced by a virgin or a wife towards a man." As he said this, he disappeared. The singing continued; and as the bystanders then knew the subject of the affection which it expressed, they heard it very variously, every one according to the state of his love. Those who looked upon women chastely, heard it as a song of symphony and sweetness; those who looked upon them unchastely, heard it as a discordant and mournful song; and those who looked upon them disdainfully, heard it as a song that was harsh and grating. At that instant the place on which they stood was suddenly changed into a theatre, and a voice was heard, saying, "INVESTIGATE THIS LOVE:" and immediately spirits from various societies presented themselves, and in the midst of them some angels in white. The latter then said, "We in this spiritual world have inquired into every species of love, not only into the love which a man has for a man, and a woman for a woman; and into the reciprocal love of a husband and a wife; but also into the love which a man has for woman, and which a woman has for men; and we have been permitted to pass through societies and examine them, and we have never yet found the common love of the sex chaste, except with those who from true conjugial love are in continual potency, and these are in the highest heavens. We have also been permitted to perceive the influx of this love into the affections of our hearts, and have been made sensible that it surpasses in sweetness every other love, except the love of two conjugial partners whose hearts are as one: but we have besought you to investigate this love, because it is new and unknown to you; and since it is essential pleasantness, we in heaven call it heavenly sweetness." They then began the investigation; and those spoke first who were unable to think chastely of marriages. They said, "What man when he beholds a beautiful and lovely virgin or wife, can so correct or purify the ideas of his thought from concupiscence, as to love the beauty and yet have no inclination to taste it, if it be allowable? Who can convert concupiscence, which is innate in every man, into such chastity, thus into somewhat not itself, and yet love? Can the love of the sex, when it enters by the eyes into the thoughts, stop at the face of a woman? Does it not descend instantly into the breast, and beyond it? The angels talk idly in saying that this love is chaste, and yet is the sweetest of all loves, and that it can only exist with husbands who are in true conjugial love, and thence in an extreme degree of potency with their wives. Do such husbands possess any peculiar power more than other men, when they see a beautiful woman, of keeping the ideas of their thought in a state of elevation, and as it were of suspending them, so that they cannot descend and proceed to what constitutes that love?" The argument was next taken up by those who were in cold and in heat; in cold towards their wives, and in heat towards the sex; and they said, "What is the chaste love of the sex? Is it not a contradiction in terms to talk of such a love? If chastity be predicated of the love of the sex, is not this destroying the very thing of which it is predicated? How can the chaste love of the sex be the sweetest of all loves, when chastity deprives it of its sweetness? You all know where the sweetness of that love resides; when therefore the idea connected therewith is banished from the mind, where and whence is the sweetness?" At that instant certain spirits interrupted them, and said, "We have been in company with the most beautiful females and have had no lust; therefore we know what the chaste love of the sex is." But their companions, who were acquainted with their lasciviousness, replied, "You were at those times in a state of loathing towards the sex, arising from impotence; and this is not the chaste love of the sex, but the ultimate of unchaste love." On hearing what had been said, the angels were indignant and requested those who stood on the right, or to the south, to deliver their sentiments. They said, "There is a love of one man to another, and also of one woman to another; and there is a love of a man to a woman, and of a woman to a man; and these three pairs of loves totally differ from each other. The love of one man to another is as the love of understanding and understanding; for the man was created and consequently born to become understanding; the love of one woman to another is as the love of affection and affection of the understanding of men; for the woman was created and born to become a love of the understanding of a man. These loves, viz., of one man to another, and of one woman to another, do not enter deeply into the bosom, but remain without, and only touch each other; thus they do not interiorly conjoin the two parties: wherefore also two men, by their mutual reasonings, sometimes engage in combat together like two wrestlers; and two women, by their mutual concupiscences, are at war with each other like two prize-fighters. But the love of a man and a woman is the love of the understanding and of its affection; and this love enters deeply and effects conjunction, which is that love; but the conjunction of minds, and not at the same time of bodies, or the endeavour towards that conjunction alone, is spiritual love, and consequently chaste love; and this love exists only with those who are in true conjugial love, and thence in an eminent degree of potency; because such, from their chastity, do not admit an influx of love from the body of any other woman than of their own wives; and as they are in an extreme degree of potency, they cannot do otherwise than love the sex, and at the same time hold in aversion whatever is unchaste. Hence they are principled in a chaste love of the sex, which, considered in itself, is interior spiritual friendship, deriving its sweetness from an eminent degree of potency, but still being chaste. This eminent degree of potency they possess in consequence of a total renunciation of whoredom; and as each loves his own wife alone, the potency is chaste. Now, since this love with such partakes not of the flesh, but only of the spirit, therefore it is chaste; and as the beauty of the woman, from innate inclination, enters at the same time into the mind, therefore the love is sweet." On hearing this, many of the bystanders put their hands to their ears, saying, "What has been said offends our ears; and what you have spoken is of no account with us." These spirits were unchaste. Then again was heard the singing from heaven, and sweeter now than before; but to the unchaste it was so grating and discordant that they hurried out of the theatre and fled, leaving behind them only the few who from wisdom loved conjugial chastity.

56. THE SECOND MEMORABLE RELATION. As I was conversing with angels some time ago in the spiritual world, I was inspired with a desire, attended with a pleasing satisfaction, to see the TEMPLE OF WISDOM, which I had seen once before; and accordingly I asked them the way to it. They said, "Follow the light and you will find it." I said, "What do you mean by following the light?" They replied, "Our light grows brighter and brighter as we approach that temple; wherefore, follow the light according to the increase of its brightness; for our light proceeds from the Lord as a sun, and thence considered in itself is wisdom." I immediately directed my course, in company with two angels, according to the increase of the brightness of the light, and ascending by a steep path to the summit of a hill in the southern quarter. There we found a magnificent gate, which the keeper, on seeing the angels with me, opened; and lo! we saw an avenue of palm-trees and laurels, according to which we directed our course. It was a winding avenue, and terminated in a garden, in the middle of which was the TEMPLE OF WISDOM. On arriving there, and looking about me, I saw several small sacred buildings, resembling the temple, inhabited by the WISE. We went towards one of them, and coming to the door accosted the person who dwelt there, and told him the occasion and manner of our coming. He said, "You are welcome; enter and be seated, and we will improve our acquaintance by discourses respecting wisdom." I viewed the building within, and observed that it was divided into two, and still was but one; it was divided into two by a transparent wall; but it appeared as one from its translucence, which was like that of the purest crystal. I inquired the reason of this? He said, "I am not alone; my wife is with me, and we are two; yet still we are not two, but one flesh." But I replied, "I know that you are a wise one; and what has a wise one or a wisdom to do with a woman?" Hereupon our host, becoming somewhat indignant, changed countenance, and beckoned his hand, and lo! instantly other wise ones presented themselves from the neighboring buildings, to whom he said humorously, "Our stranger here asks, 'What has a wise one or a wisdom to do with a woman?'" At this they smiled and said, "What is a wise one or a wisdom without a woman, or without love, a wife being the love of a wise man's wisdom?" Our host then said, "Let us now endeavor to improve our acquaintance by some discourse respecting wisdom; and let it be concerning causes, and at present concerning the cause of beauty in the female sex." Then they spoke in order; and the first assigned as a cause, that women were created by the Lord's affections of the wisdom of men, and the affection of wisdom is essential beauty. A second said, that the woman was created by the Lord through the wisdom of the man, because from the man; and that hence she is a form of wisdom inspired with love-affection; and since love-affection is essential life, a female is the life of wisdom, whereas a male is wisdom; and the life of wisdom is essential beauty. A third said, that women have a perception of the delights of conjugial love; and as their whole body is an organ of that perception, it must needs be that the habitation of the delights of conjugial love, with its perception, be beauty. A fourth assigned this cause; that the Lord took away from the man beauty and elegance of life, and transferred it to the woman; and that hence the man, unless he be re-united with his beauty and elegance in the woman, is stern, austere, joyless, and unlovely; so one man is wise only for himself, and another is foolish; whereas, when a man is united with his beauty and elegance of life in a wife, he becomes engaging, pleasant, active, and lovely, and thereby wise. A fifth said, that women were created beauties, not for the sake of themselves, but for the sake of the men; that men, who of themselves are hard, might be made soft; that their minds, of themselves grave and severe, might become gentle and cheerful; and that their hearts, of themselves cold, might be made warm; which effects take place when they become one flesh with their wives. A sixth assigned as a cause, that the universe was created by the Lord a most perfect work; but that nothing was created in it more perfect than a beautiful and elegant woman, in order that man may give thanks to the Lord for his bounty herein, and may repay it by the reception of wisdom from him. These and many other similar observations having been made, the wife of our host appeared beyond the crystal wall, and said to her husband, "Speak if you please;" and then when he spoke, the life of wisdom from the wife was perceived in his discourse; for in the tone of his speech was her love: thus experience testified to the truth. After this we took a view of the temple of wisdom, and also of the paradisiacal scenes which encompassed it, and being thereby filled with joy, we departed, and passed through the avenue to the gate, and descended by the way we had ascended.

* * * * *

ON LOVE TRULY CONJUGIAL.

57. There are infinite varieties of conjugial love, it being in no two persons exactly similar. It appears indeed as if it were similar with many; but this appearance arises from corporeal judgement, which, being gross and dull, is little qualified to discern aright respecting it. By corporeal judgement we mean the judgement of the mind from the evidence of the external senses; but to those whose eyes are opened to see from the judgment of the spirit, the differences are manifest; and more distinctly to those who are enabled to elevate the sight arising from such judgement to a higher degree, which is effected by withdrawing it from the senses, and exalting it into a superior light; these can at length confirm themselves in their understanding, and thereby see that conjugial love is never exactly similar in any two persons. Nevertheless no one can see the infinite varieties of this love in any light of the understanding however elevated, unless he first know what is the nature and quality of that love in its very essence and integrity, thus what was its nature and quality when, together with life, it was implanted in man from God. Unless this its state, which was most perfect, be known, it is in vain to attempt the discovery of its differences by any investigation; for there is no other fixed point, from which as a first principle those differences may be deduced, and to which as the focus of their direction they may be referred, and thus may appear truly and without fallacy. This is the reason why we here undertake to describe that love in its essence; and as it was in this essence when, together with life from God, it was infused into man, we undertake to describe it such as it was in its primeval state; and as in this state it was truly conjugial, therefore we have entitled this section, ON LOVE TRULY CONJUGIAL. The description of it shall be given in the following order: I. There exists a love truly conjugial, which at this day is so rare that it is not known what is its quality, and scarcely that it exists. II. This love originates in the marriage of good and truth. III. There is a correspondence of this love with the marriage of the Lord and the church. IV. This love from its origin and correspondence, is celestial, spiritual, holy, pure, and clean, above every other love imparted by the Lord to the angels of heaven and the men of the church. V. It is also the foundation love of all celestial and spiritual loves, and thence of all natural loves. VI. Into this love are collected all joys and delights from first to last. VII. None however come into this love, and can be in it, but those who approach the Lord, and love the truths of the church and practise its goods. VIII. This love was the love of loves with the ancients, who lived in the golden, silver, and copper ages; but afterwards it successively departed. We now proceed to the explanation of each article.

58. I. THERE EXISTS A LOVE TRULY CONJUGIAL, WHICH AT THIS DAY IS SO RARE THAT IS NOT KNOWN WHAT IS ITS QUALITY, AND SCARCELY THAT IT EXISTS. That there exists such conjugial love as is described in the following pages, may indeed be acknowledged from the first state of that love, when it insinuates itself, and enters into the hearts of a youth and a virgin; thus from its influence on those who begin to love one alone of the sex, and to desire to be joined therewith in marriage; and still more at the time of courtship and the interval which precedes the marriage-ceremony; and lastly during the marriage-ceremony and some days after it. At such times who does not acknowledge and consent to the following positions; that this love is the foundation of all loves, and also that into it are collected all joys and delights from first to last? And who does not know that, after this season of pleasure, the satisfactions thereof successively pass away and depart, till at length they are scarcely sensible? In the latter case, if it be said as before, that this love is the foundation of all loves, and that into it are collected all joys and delights, the positions are neither agreed to nor acknowledged, and possibly it is asserted that they are nonsense or incomprehensible mysteries. From these considerations it is evident, that primitive marriage love bears a resemblance to love truly conjugial, and presents it to view in a certain image. The reason of which is, because then the love of the sex, which is unchaste, is put away, and in its place the love of one of the sex, which is truly conjugial and chaste, remains implanted: in this case, who does not regard other women with indifference, and the one to whom he is united with love and affection?

59. The reason why love truly conjugial is notwithstanding so rare, that its quality is not known, and scarcely its existence, is, because the state of pleasurable gratifications before and at the time of marriage, is afterwards changed into a state of indifference arising from an insensibility to such gratifications. The causes of this change of state are too numerous to be here adduced; but they shall be adduced in a future part of this work, when we come to explain in their order the causes of coldnesses, separations, and divorces; from which it will be seen, that with the generality at this day this image of conjugial love is so far abolished, and with the image the knowledge thereof, that its quality and even its existence are scarcely known. It is well known, that every man by birth is merely corporeal, and that from corporeal he becomes natural more and more interiorly, and thus rational, and at length spiritual. The reason why this is effected progressively is, because the corporeal principle is like ground, wherein things natural, rational, and spiritual are implanted in their order; thus a man becomes more and more a man. The case is nearly similar when he enters into marriage; on this occasion a man becomes a more complete man, because he is joined with a consort, with whom he acts as one man: but this, in the first state spoken of above, is effected only in a sort of image: in like manner he then commences from what is corporeal, and proceeds to what is natural as to conjugial life, and thereby to a conjunction into a one. Those who, in this case, love corporeal natural things, and rational things only as grounded therein, cannot be conjoined to a consort as into a one, except as to those externals: and when those externals fail, cold takes possession of the internals; in consequence whereof the delights of that love are dispersed and driven away, as from the mind so from the body, and afterwards as from the body so from the mind; and this until there is nothing left of the remembrance of the primeval state of their marriage, consequently no knowledge respecting it. Now since this is the case with the generality of persons at this day, it is evident that love truly conjugial is not known as to its quality, and scarcely as to its existence. It is otherwise with those who are spiritual. With them the first state is an initiation into lasting satisfactions, which advance in degree, in proportion as the spiritual rational principle of the mind, and thence the natural sensual principle of the body, in each party, conjoin and unite themselves with the same principles in the other party; but such instances are rare.

60. II. THIS LOVE ORIGINATES IN THE MARRIAGE OF GOOD AND TRUTH. That all things in the universe have relation to good and truth, is acknowledged by every intelligent man, because it is a universal truth; that likewise in every thing in the universe good is conjoined with truth, and truth with good, cannot but be acknowledged, because this also is a universal truth, which agrees with the former. 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 each proceeds from the Lord, and they proceed from him as a one. The two things which proceed from the Lord, are love and wisdom, because these are himself, thus from himself; and all things relating to love are called good, or goods, and all things relating to wisdom are called true, or truths; and as these two proceed from him as the creator, it follows that they are in the things created. This may be illustrated by heat and light which proceed from the sun: from them all things appertaining to the earth are derived, which germinate according to their presence and conjunction; and natural heat corresponds to spiritual heat, which is love, as natural light corresponds to spiritual light, which is wisdom.

61. That conjugial love proceeds from the marriage of good and truth, will be shewn in the following section or paragraph: It is mentioned here only with a view of shewing that this love is celestial, spiritual, and holy, because it is from a celestial, spiritual, and holy origin. In order to see that the origin of conjugial love is from the marriage of good and truth, it may be expedient in this place briefly to premise somewhat on the subject. It was said just above, that in every created thing there exists a conjunction of good and truth; and there is no conjunction unless it be reciprocal; for conjunction on one part, and not on the other in its turn, is dissolved of itself. Now as there is a conjunction of good and truth, and this is reciprocal, it follows that there is a truth of good, or truth grounded in good, and that there is a good of truth, or good grounded in truth; that the truth of good, or truth grounded in good, is in the male, and that it is the very essential male (or masculine) principle, and that the good of truth, or good grounded in truth, is in the female, and that it is the very essential female (or feminine) principle; also that there is a conjugial union between those two, will be seen in the following section: it is here only mentioned in order to give some preliminary idea on the subject.

62. III. THERE IS A CORRESPONDENCE OF THIS LOVE WITH THE MARRIAGE OF THE LORD AND THE CHURCH; that is, that as the Lord loves the church, and is desirous that the church should love him, so a husband and a wife mutually love each other. That there is a correspondence herein, is well known in the Christian world: but the nature of that correspondence as yet is not known; therefore we will explain it presently in a particular paragraph. It is here mentioned in order to shew 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 also follows as a consequence of conjugial love's originating in the marriage of good and truth, spoken of in the preceding article; because the marriage of good and truth constitutes the church with man: for the marriage of good and truth is the same as the marriage of charity and faith; since good relates to charity, and truth to faith. That this marriage constitutes the church must at once be acknowledged, because it is a universal truth; and every universal truth is acknowledged as soon as it is heard, in consequence of the Lord's influx and at the same time of the confirmation of heaven. Now since the church is the Lord's, because it is from him, and since conjugial love corresponds to the marriage of the Lord and the church, it follows that this love is from the Lord.

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16     Next Part
Home - Random Browse