Spiritual Diary, by Emanuel Swedenborg, , tr. by Bush, Smithson and Buss [1883-9] at sacred-texts.com
CONCERNING THE MOST DECEITFUL. It is astonishing that the most deceitful above the head, who had been pontiffs and the like, cannot refrain, as soon as anything guileless and innocent appears, from laying hold of something as a means or occasion of ensnaring. When anything of this kind occurred, as, for instance, when I counted footsteps in the street; they immediately seized a wicked subject by which to carry on their machinations, and it was perceived that they would fain murder whatever innocent person came in their way. But they were still of such a quality as to be in fear for themselves, for as often as they did this they were published. They spoke among themselves, as in the state of their worldly life, that because I was against the Pope, I should be borne to the inquisition. - 1748, November 29.4102.
CONCERNING THE SPEECH OF SPIRITS. The spirits round about me, wherever they were, kept up a conversation respecting some matter known to me during the whole night, so that there was a kind of unceasing chat embracing ratiocinations. The effect was to awaken me repeatedly from sleep, and their speech flowed into certain representations made in dreams. They then said to me that they could talk in a continued stream, and that they had at command such a multitude of arguments and reasonings on the subject as would be incredible. I perceived that there was with them such an indefinite series of reasonings on one topic as would exceed all belief. It was perceived also and said that evil spirits frame various shadowy things which do not truly relate to the subject in hand, and these they connect with numerous other shadows and phantasies of the subject of discourse and which can only be taken as the imagery of dreams just spoken of, and so on. - 1748, November 30. On other occasions, they seem to converse with each other altogether as men, for they do not reflect that it is through ideas. With me, however, the interaction was wholly like that of one man with another.4103.
CONCERNING THE POSTERITY OF JACOB AND THE CHURCH. It was insinuated that when at length they became so immersed in falsities, that nothing but the false occupied their minds which happened in the time of Jacob, that then they were vastated, as those are wont to be in the other life who are in the life of the persuasions of the false, so that they knew nothing of true worship, and knowledge was then first insinuated into their mind. This was done from their being in such ignorance and such a confused mental obscurity, that they neither knew moral nor civil law, nor that they were forbidden to commit adultery, to kill, or to steal. They could not be made to know this either by miracles or by prophets, because such was the life of their cupidities derived from Jacob. - 1748, November 30.4104.
CONCERNING LOVE. It was perceived that to him who, in the life of the body, loves his neighbor as himself, it is given in the other life to love his neighbor better than himself, for the goods of love are then indefinitely increased. Such is the life of the body, that one cannot go beyond the point of loving his neighbor as himself, because he is in corporeals, but with those who have passed out of this life, the love is more pure and becomes at length angelic, and this is to love others more than one's self. - 1748, November 30.4105.
THAT THE LOVE IS THE LIFE. In conversing with spirits respecting love, it was said that the love is the life and that without love there is no life, and because spirits are of contrary natures, so there are contrary loves, as the love of self and the world, whence arise corresponding delights; and it was perceived by them that unless there be a love of a particular object, or a cupidity, which is the continuation of love, or unless there is some delight peculiar to a certain love, there is no life; which is better perceived in the world of spirits then among men. They then said from apperception, that there was nothing of life, unless there were love and consequent delight, and that they knew not that any degree of life could be given on any other condition; and that as nothing could vegetate without the vernal and summer heat, so nothing could live in the spiritual world without love. Hence it was made manifest that true love is the alone life, and that there is no other life than that of love. - 1748, December 1.4106.
CONCERNING THE ANCIENT CHURCH. The Ancient Church, which is called Noah, and its continuation which is called Shem, is also above the head, but not so high. Those who were of it spoke with me saying they were of the Ancient Church. They flowed in pleasantly through the region of the head into the pectoral region, in the direction of the heart, but not quite reaching it. - 1748, December 1.4107.
CONCERNING A CIVIL STATE. There are those in the other life who live in a so-called civil state, which is pleasant and agreeable, and in which I was for some time. Living in their own agreeable and pleasant sphere, they fear no one, and when any spirit not good approaches, they speak civilly with him as one who is too good to say or do aught that is amiss; such a spirit is then himself also reduced into a civil state, and either demeans himself as good, or departs, for the mind or disposition of the one affects the other. They never in that state say that anyone is bad; though still it is not a state of dissimulation, but of sincerity, for they speak from civil promptings, and it is the state of those who in the world have lived happily and well in the conjugial relation, and have loved children. - 1748, December 1.4108.
Others who were evil upon coming among them could not remain there, because they were put in pain, as I heard from certain ones that they could not be there, as civil things affected them unpleasantly, just as they did in the world, and thus they showed themselves evil. They were very averse to that kind of companionship. In like manner in the world when anyone has a good opinion of a bad man, he [the latter] cannot well refrain from appearing accordingly; wherefore as their interiors are fully disclosed in the other life, they are pained and thus separate. They are prompted to act out their evil, but dare not.4109.
CONCERNING THINGS IN THE OTHER LIFE. It was observed and insinuated, that whatever a man had done in the life of the body, this returns in the other life, for there are perpetual changes of states, through which spirits are led, so that there is no state which had existed in the life of the body, but it then returns; thus the hatreds and other things, which one had not only done, but thought; nay, everything of the kind which had occurred from infancy to the extreme limit of life. Even the very persons against whom he had cherished enmity, either open or concealed, are instantaneously present, so lamentable are the states into which they are driven. But, what is peculiarly observable, all the evil deeds and thoughts of the evil return to the very life, but with the good and those who were in faith it is not so; all these states of good, of friendship, and of love return with the highest delight and happiness. - 1748, December 1. Experience, in this respect, testifies that evil does not reign with me.4110.
These states return often, and because they are many, as, for instance, in which the man had cherished open or latent enmities, pretended friendships, and so on, they occur with much variety, as also other evils, the indulgence of worldly and selfish love, the commission of adulteries, etc. All these not only return, but are manifested before spirits and angels with shame and grief. He thus undergoes not one kind of punishment, but many; and as often as it occurs, and his character is exposed, he suffers a punishment conformed to his evil and iniquity; but still one general kind of punishment, and consequently one hell remains for him, which is that of his ruling evil and iniquity. - 1748, December 1.4111.
Such punishments continue for a long time, even through many years and many ages, as, for instance with the dragon David; and they carry with them a process of vastation, but yet a final vastation follows, by which he is dissociated from those of such a character, and because he is then in scarcely any society he sits in darkness and in torture, with very little life, until he becomes capable of rendering some kind of use; thus he continually descends to the ultimate of his punishment.4112.
But with the upright and the good the case is different. They continually ascend through the delights and felicities before mentioned, and thus mount to the Angelic heaven. - 1748, December 1.4113.
CONCERNING ACTUAL EVIL. I have perceived that so long as evil is in the thought only, it does not so [frequently] recur; but that so soon as it becomes actual, it passes into the will, when both the thought and the will, thus, the whole man, conspire [to the evil]. Anything may be extirpated from the thought before it enters the will, but when it is in the will it is not easily extirpated, for it then also occupies the thought. - 1748, December 1.4114.
CONCERNING THE MOST ANCIENT CHURCH. There was exhibited to me a flamy light above the forehead, and those of the Most Ancient Church spoke with me, saying, that they have such a light, and much more intense, in which they dwell. - 1748, December 7. 4114. 1-2. CONCERNING EACH KIND OF LIFE OF A SPIRIT. There are with a spirit two lives which he takes with him from the body, and which remain, as it is not given him to use the corporeal memory; namely, the life of persuasion and the life of cupidities. As respects the life of persuasions, I wondered that spirits could converse with each other, as they do, and that whatever they think and speak they are able to confirm by so many reasons or reasonings as a man could scarcely believe; for they adduce so many and so various confirmations, which they have at hand, that I have often been filled with wonder [at witnessing it]. I was given to understand, that confirmations so various and manifold, which are ever in readiness and, as it were, present to them, are from the life of persuasions; for when a spirit is in persuasion, he immediately excites or suggests confirmations from a man's memory, that is from the things stored up in his memory; for the persuasion of a thing excites, as anyone may be aware [who reflects]. Hence proceed their discourses replete with such multiplied confirmations. But with men whose interiors are not opened so that one can speak with spirits, the case is different; for to him such spirits apply themselves as are of a nearly similar persuasion; for if two contrary persuasions were present, there would be a discord. With me it is otherwise, in order that I may know the qualities of spirits. When a man changes his persuasions then other spirits apply themselves to him; wherefore, whatever be the man's persuasion, such is the persuasion of the spirit, and the spirit continually excites confirmations. Moreover the spirit that is with a man is led into his persuasion, and adopts a similar, as I have learnt by experience. The life of cupidities is distinct from this, but wherever cupidity has induced a persuasion, then each life acts. Wherefore it is good for a man not to be persuaded concerning falsities, but to be confirmed in truths; for he is not easily brought to renounce a pre-assumed persuasion.4115.
CONCERNING THE LIFE OF PERSUASION. The life which remains after death is the life of persuasion and the life of cupidity. When a spirit is in the life of his persuasion he excites everything in the memory of a man, that is in the conformity with the persuasion, just as if the man knew it from himself. This it was given to know by experience when spirits were present in their persuasion, as they then excited whatever was conformable to the persuasion, so that I sometimes wondered whence flowed such prudence, astuteness, cunning, and keenness of discovery in regard to things which they had never known. I supposed it to be taken from the corporeal memory [of spirits], but the fact is not so; it comes from the memory of the man which is made subservient to them; the spirit merely comes into his persuasion, when immediately whatever is conformable is excited. That there are such lives with spirits, that they are a kind of remaining instinct from the confirming and persuading things of the bodily life, that by means of this instinct the spirit excites other confirmations, with many things besides, and that much more acutely than in the life of the body, things too which were previously unknown - all this was made evident by much experience.4116.
There is also a life of cupidity which is altogether a different kind of life; for the life of persuasion has respect to the true and the false, and the confirmation of the true, being contracted from the knowledges of things, and many other sources, but the life of cupidity has respect to evil and good, thus to whatever is called love.4117.
It may be manifest that persuasion, in the life of the body, is able to subdue cupidities, as, for example, when anyone persuades himself that a particular kind of food is more wholesome than another, although it may be of no taste at all, or of a disagreeable taste, so that previous to the persuasion he may have actually nauseated it; still he gives it the preference, and in process of time it becomes palatable to him, and even agreeable, so that he is able to prefer the nauseous and the bitter to the sweet. Thus he subdues cupidity; and similar is the case in other things. The life of cupidities, however, acts in a great measure to induce persuasion; for that which is loved perniciously is confirmed on many grounds, even until the man is persuaded, which might be illustrated and established by innumerable proofs.4118.
The life of cupidities remains to spirits, and excites various cupidities with man, and thus also confirmations, as was made manifest in many ways.4119.
There are spirits with a man who are in a like persuasion and a like cupidity, and who may be called the subjects of many; for the persuasion and the cupidity of the man immediately excite those who are [in this respect] like him. Every single idea represents the whole man, thus the whole spirit, whose idea or image being presented, he is immediately present himself. Such is the order [of things] in the other life, as was evinced to me by a multitude of proofs. Yet there still remains a common persuasion, or a ruling persuasion, thus also a ruling cupidity. Thus spirits of a like kind are with man, and they remain with him until his persuasion and his cupidity are changed, or till he is reformed and becomes regenerate, when, as a consequence, other spirits succeed [and take their place].4120.
I spoke with spirits on these points, and they could not but acknowledge that the fact was so, for all experience agrees with it; only spirits suppose that they produce, from their own corporeal memory, the things which they utter, and the fact of this impression was sometimes clearly evinced to me.4121.
THAT ALL AND SINGULAR THINGS OF THE WORD ARE VESSELS. The contents of the Word, viewed in the literal sense, are most general vessels, indeed so general, and some parts so extremely general, that celestial and spiritual things, or goods and truths innumerable, may be insinuated thereby. Externally viewed [these vessels] are unsightly, because so very general but inasmuch as men are of such a quality that they gather their wisdom solely from sensual things, and have no disposition to know aught else than things corporeal and most general, therefore it is that there are such vessels; such, for instance, is the proposition that all evil is from the Lord, when in fact no evil, not the very least [is from Him]; but because man would fain be wise from corporeals and from darkness [itself], therefore it is thus confirmed that the Lord governs and foresees all things, and in this way he who simply believes, without any restriction that there is nothing which is not of the Lord, thus that it is He alone who does all things, may [safely] remain in such an opinion, as also that the Lord tempts man, and many other things of the like kind.4122.
At the same time truths may be applied to those vessels, as that the Lord does and foresees everything, and is omnipotent, but that evils accrue mediately through evil spirits; as also that He so orders and disposes, that all and singular evils are converted into good. In this way one and the same vessels receives contrary senses, and thus applies itself to every kind of truth, for it is a truth that no evil can exist without the Lord's permission. It is a truth also that whatever he permits takes place through the agency of evil spirits, and that he would not permit it, were not man so evil that without evil he cannot be reformed. It is moreover a truth, that there is no evil from the Lord. In order therefore that the words of the Word may be applicable to everyone [according to his state], they are of this most general character, in consequence of which they become available to each individual. Upon these points I conversed with spirits. - 1748, December 8.4123.
CONCERNING [MY] REVELATIONS. There are spirits who are averse to anything being said concerning the things revealed [to me], but it was replied that they are instead of miracles, and that without them men would not know the character of the book, nor would they buy it, or read it, or understand it, or be affected by it, or believe it - in a word, that they would remain in ignorance [of the whole subject] nor would wish to hear anything respecting the interiors of the Word, which they regard as mere phantasies. Such as are simply men of learning will for the most reject them. - 1748, December 9.4124.
THAT THE KINDS OF CONJUGIAL FELICITIES ARE INDEFINITE. Some time ago, while in an intermediate state between waking and sleep, I had a manifest perception, that the universal genera of conjugial felicities are indefinite. This was related to spirits, and it was said that the truth on this head can never be perceived and acknowledged, but in an interior state. Wherefore some of them were remitted by the Lord into an interior state, and thence spoke with me, saying, that they indeed apperceived the genera of the felicities of conjugial love to be indefinite in point of number. - 1748, December 10.4125.
CONCERNING THE MEMORY OF SPIRITS. If it were permitted to spirits to be in corporeal memory, they could not possibly be among other spirits, for then evil spirits would immediately know whatever of evil anyone had thought or done; for all ideas are communicated in the other life. Thus they would bring forth from his memory nothing else than evils and falses, and thus would rush upon him and continually infest and torment him. Wherefore the Lord alone knows what man thinks and does prior to his becoming a spirit. - 1748, December 11.4126.
CONCERNING THE FACE OF A MONKEY. There appeared to me the face of a monkey, and it was said that those are of such a quality who apply to themselves what belongs to others, in order to deceive them. In the other life spirits can impersonate anyone, and present not only the idea of the man, but also images or representatives of his speech and other things, as also whatever anyone may be inclined to favor. - 1748, December 11.4127.
CONCERNING THE HELL OF THE UNHAPPY. Being asleep, I was infested by a certain one who was changed into a kind of nondescript monster, composed of a body at once human and bestial, and distinguished by other frightful features which cannot be described. From these, and other things of like nature it may be inferred how the evil, in an interior sphere, are infested and tormented.4128.
Angelic spirits then subsequently spoke with me in my sleep by means of representations, but the representations were such that I clearly perceived them while asleep, in their entire series, and what they signified, so that I was myself altogether in the same speech, which, however, was not properly speech, but vision, accompanied with a manifest preception of the object in its reality. It was thus indicated why those direful sights were seen by me, and such things suffered. The spectacle was sufficiently prolonged in duration, with a clear perception, and I answered by a like intuitive speech. But when I awoke I could not understand a single item [of what I had seen], still less declare it. I wished to recall it, but could not, because they were such things as do not fall under the sense that is expressed by speech; but I learned from them what is the state of the blessed in an interior sphere, namely, that their communication with each other through the representatives of interior thought is such as cannot be described; wherefore their felicity is supreme, since similar things are conjoined with the perception of felicity, which is something that is absolutely unutterable. - 1748, December 22.4129.
THAT EVIL SPIRITS ARE BOUND TO OBEY. While speaking with myself, or thinking with myself, concerning the import of the word rib of which the woman was built, evil spirits spoke and thought with themselves precisely as I did. Shortly after they said that they had done so, and yet that subsequently to this they acted in opposition to me. Hence it was given to know, that while the Lord rules the thoughts and speech of man through the angels, evil spirits cannot but think in like manner, and that then they know no otherwise than that it is from themselves. The case is similar with the preacher of bad life, when he commends what is good; evil spirits think and excite the same, but when the preacher is in his true life, then evil spirits have the ascendancy. Thus it is clearly manifest how the evil bring forth good things. - 1748, December 29.4130.
CONCERNING EVIL SPIRITS. That evil spirits did continually and for a long course of years, by cunning and malice, by deceits, threats, and innumerable machinations, labor to destroy the interior things of the Word, which machinations, from their long continuance, I am unable to describe in detail, [was matter of distinct observation].4131.
I observed moreover, that spirits and angels are never able to discover or utter anything of truth from themselves; as often as they were left to themselves, with a view to such discovery, they were wholly incompetent to it. Whatever they lay hold of, it is not truth, as, for instance, in respect to the interior sense of the Word, they were never able to discover it of themselves, and when the spirits were sometimes indignant, I perceived that it was in consequence of this inability. The case is the same with a man, who is never able of himself to do anything good or to think anything true, though it seems to himself that he does, but the impression is false; as when one trusts to his own prudence, he thinks the result to be due to himself, and yet it tends to evil, if not in the life of the body, as it seems to him, yet still in the other life. It hence appears evident that all good and truth is from the Lord. - 1749, January 4.4132.
The state of spirits and angels is, in general, a state of comparative sleep, for since they are in the present [instead of the past or future], they distinctly perceive things as present [like one asleep], but he who sees all things from eternity, and the series of all results, is in a state of wakefulness, which fully holds of the Lord alone. That it is a sleep was shown me from the circumstance of my falling into a sleep with them, in which state I supposed that things were really so and so, when yet it was afterwards given to know that such was not the case. Thus spirits and angels can of themselves do nothing which is good and true. - 1749, January 7.4133.
THAT THE THINGS WRITTEN BY ME WOULD APPEAR HYPOTHETICAL, AND MARKED BY BLEMISHES. While in a delightful dream, I seemed to be present at a great entertainment, and after a time to be clad in very white hair-cloth, but without any other garments. Prompted by an emotion of shame, I went out in order to put on additional raiment, and seeming to myself to be forbidden to assume one of a dark gray color, I handed another to a servant [ut stalla saxer]. 4133-1 They arrayed me with this, which was of a slightly yellow color, with long sleeves, the right marked by spots. Having awoke I spoke concerning the dream with the posterity of the Most Ancient Church, who were above the head, inquiring as to its signification. They supposed the import to be that the things written were not to be confirmed, as I was doing it, by parallel places, but that if left naked [or simple] it would be as if clothed with the very white sackcloth, whereas, if confirmed by so many [parallel] sayings, it would be as if clothed with the other garment. But it was said and shown in various ways that it ought to be managed in the mode I had adopted, for the world is such at this day, that it altogether prefers such a garment to the hair-cloth described. It was shown that the yellow color of the garment signifies that which is hypothetical.4134.
It was shown moreover by various spiritual representations, how they would look upon what was written if destitute of the parallel confirmatory matter which was now to be read. These spiritual representations were effected by a pure light, variously radiating, so swiftly and beautifully as if it were something spiritual, and that too by rapid changes of form, one spiritual form passing into another in a wonderful manner. Spiritual speech, however, is representative, expressing spiritual things. - 1749, January 9.4135.
There was shown the right part of a human back naked about the arms, by which was said to be signified, that that only is to be shown at present, because the Most Ancient Church alone is treated of, while yet the Word is such as to represent the anterior parts of a man, because it embraces everything in the universe, both in heaven and the earths, from eternity to eternity, each one in particular and everything in each [singula in singulis]. - 1749, January 9, which things are anterior.4136.
CONCERNING THE PULSATION OF THE HEART. It was given me to feel, with the utmost distinctness, the pulsations of the heart in the occiput. The pulse of the heart of the spirituals is rapid, vibratory, and strong; that of the celestials is slow, tacit, and non-vibratory, almost like the pulse of the human heart. The momentum of the spiritual pulse is to that of the celestial as two and a half to one. The reason is, that the celestial pulse is continued through the spirituals, and thus issues from the celestial. - 1749, January 10.4137.
HOW THE CASE IS WITH EVILS AND FALSES. Whatever at any time flows from the proprium of angels, spirits, and men is evil and false. They can never produce anything, not even the least particle of goodness and truth. Just so far as they are left to themselves, just so much of the evil and false is produced, therefore so much of misfortune or disaster, which if it does not appear at once will yet manifest itself afterwards. As far [on the other hand] as anyone acts from the Lord, so far is he in the production of goodness and truth, because the Lord is goodness and truth. Hence it appears from whence flow evils and falses; for the evil, however much they may will it, cannot do good; thus in general as to alls and singulars. - 1749, January 11. It was most distinctly perceived that the fact is as now stated.4138.
CONCERNING MISFORTUNES. I perceived that no disasters or fortuitous evils, as they are called, can happen to a man with whom the Lord is: for when by the agency of evil spirits who were present, a restive horse threatened injury [to his rider], those spirits were suddenly cast down. They that were with me observed, that from such things it might be perceived what kind of spirits they are who bring misfortunes with them, which was afterwards confirmed. - 1749, January 14.4139.
CONCERNING EVIL SPIRITS. It was perceived why evil spirits are more cunning than the good, or the sons of the kingdom, and why the evil assault and the good only defend or resist; namely, because the evil think nothing but evil and how to injure; in this consists their delight, but never in good. - 1749, January 22. THAT SPIRITS THOUGH ABSENT MAY APPEAR AS PRESENT. I have thought in connection with spirits concerning the fact that spirits may appear present though at a great distance remote, and that they operate as much in the presence of others as if they were actually there, nor can it be believed to be otherwise, as their presence is felt. The case is like that of the sound of the lips on the ear of one at a distance, in which the perception is as if the speaker were present to the ear, while yet it is merely the sound made by the throat and tongue [of one who is more or less remote]. So also is it in regard to the sight which extends itself into the distance, while the eye remains in its place. Thus it is with thought which can expatiate abroad in the universe, although its seat is in the human brain; for thought affects one as sound does the ear, and where the thought it, there the spirit is supposed to be. It is, however, an appearance, for place cannot be predicated of thought, but only of the organic substance from which thought flows; and because thought affects [the percipient], nothing else is believed than that the spirit itself is locally there. It is therefore an appearance, although the effect is the same as if there was an actual presence. - 1749, February 2. CONCERNING THE NEW CHURCH CALLED ENOSCH. - [Gen. iv. 26]. Certain persons spoke with me who were of the church called Enosch, Gen. 4:26, and spoken of in the end of that chapter, which church held charity as the principal point of faith. It was perceived that they approached very gently, near the head upwards, and that they spoke modestly, saying that they lived in charity, among themselves, and performed offices of friendship to others, but that they did not think so very much concerning the Lord, though still something; from which it appeared that their charity was the charity of friendship, and but in a slight degree the charity of faith. They live in quiet, and like good citizens, causing inconvenience to no one. - 1749, February 4.4140.
THE SPEECH OF ANGELIC SPIRITS. THE THOUGHT OF ANGELIC SPIRITS. It is scarcely possible to describe, even in the most general way, how it is that ideas are variously bound or tied to things, and that they inhere in things, which things are a kind of vessels or centers, from which are numerous issues like rays from the sun. If a thing true and good be assumed, then that truth and good may be represented in a variety of ways, and their ideas may be with them, and in them, and thence diffuse themselves into many other things. Representations also may be formed in which and to which ideas may be annexed, as white or golden candlesticks, variously decorated with representative ornament. Thus, for example, a candlestick so formed may serve for a subject or vessel from whence may flow innumerable varieties of other subjects represented at the same time. From whatever affection they think, as from a sigh, from a laugh, and so forth, in that thing there may be latent multitudes of other things simultaneously present and inhering; for each thing of the kind, as a laugh, for instance, exists from many causes, and in these causes inhere also, as a formative power, the causes of causes, which are unknown to man, and can never be explored. There are moreover formed from things various and multiplied spheres, as various spheres of goodness, with their own light, with the tempering of light, which exists in innumerable shades and degrees. Such spheres are produced also by means of affections, and the countless forms of affections; as also by the bare cogitative or ideal removal of those things which it is desired should be absent, and which accordingly recede. In this manner the spheres of objects and of representations are tempered, so that it is ineffable to what degree these varieties exist; indeed they may be called, as to number, indefinites of indefinites of indefinites. - 1749, February 12. Thus, for instance, Ps. 144:12, "That our daughters may be as corner-stones polished after the similitude of a palace;" daughters here stand for goods, which may be represented to and by angelic ideas to the very life in innumerable particulars, but not otherwise.4141.
CONCERNING EXCREMENTS. I saw how those female spirits who had lived in pleasures labor in vile excrements. Those filthy bodily excrements they continue to void, and it was said that they greatly delight in them, or that they were pleasant to them, for [corrupt] pleasures are turned [in the other life] into such things. Others, however, do not feel this delight [from such a source], but on the contrary something offensive and revolting. It was said that those of this class, whether males or females, are they who from assumed principles, prefer voluptuous enjoyments to all others. - 1749, February 14.4142.
CONCERNING MANSIONS. I have sometimes observed in sleep that in my garden at Stockholm there were various mansions of doves near the earth with stone entrances and enclosures and chambers of beautiful construction within. I wondered that there were such things in my garden and yet I had not known it; and that at a different height [above the earth], to which it was necessary to ascend by ladders [a similar sight was to be seen], and the same also at a third elevation, where were shepherds, meadows, and groves. During the last night also I had a vivid perception in a dream of a mansion near the earth in a garden in which was a chamber that I saw, and with the tenant of which I spoke in my dream. On awaking I spoke with the spirits around me, who answered me as if being themselves in a dream. Near the earth were artisans with whom a conversation was held concerning a census. - 1749, February 16.4143.
CONCERNING THE MATERIALS OF WORDS. It happened that when I took certain words from my collection to insert them in what I was writing, and when for that purpose I took but a single word from the things which were not in my memory, there then occurred a change of spirits. Other spirits succeeded, and the former complained much and with no little lamentation that thus they could not be present but were driven away because something foreign had occurred to me. The reason was, that spirits succeeded who indulged in words, or the materials of speech, while the former were accustomed solely to thought. I was thus taught by experience that owing to a mutually contrary sphere these two classes of spirits could not be present together; for those who inhere in the materials of the Word take away the faculty of thinking from those who wish only to think. But the angelic spirits removed them, because they are within the sphere of thought and thus control the interiors of thought. But spirits wished to control the exteriors of thought, which power is now taken from them, because they act by persuasions. - 1749, February 17. Hence it appears that rational spirits cannot be present together with scientific, and that they are altogether distinct from each other.4144.
CONCERNING PROPRIUM. Spirits are indignant and complain when they perceive that another leads them. As soon as they observe this it becomes intolerable to them. Yet they care nothing for it when they do not observe it; they then think that they lead themselves, or that they think, speak, and act from themselves. This sometimes happens even when they are led by others, and the fact is shown them; but they cannot bear it even when they observe that the teaching is from me. Thus it appears how difficult it is to persuade them that they do not live of themselves. Altogether different is the condition of the angels, who do not wish to think, speak, or act from themselves. - 1749, February 19.4145.
CONCERNING THE MOST ANCIENT CHURCH. There was to the Most Ancient Church an internal respiration, thus from the internal man, who was in consort even as to the external with spirits and angels. But afterwards the way was closed, and the respiration became external, wherefore all communication, speech, etc., with spirits ceased. - 1749, February 19.4146.
THE DISCOURSES OF ANGELS FALL INTO SUCH REPRESENTATIONS AS ARE IN THE WORD. It was sometimes shown in sleep that the spiritual angels in conversing together said, that the things written by me were not true, or to that effect. I then seemed to myself in sleep to be guilty of scortation and even of adultery; the import of what they said being thus represented in dreams. From these and similar things it may appear, that angelic discourses fall into such representations as occur in the Word, nay into such terms as are found there; which is confirmed also by the circumstance, that it was given to know the fact, as after a sleep thus infested I thought it and they then acknowledged it.4147.
So also I was prompted to bite my tongue when they thought against interior things; and other things of like kind.4148.
That dreams, when representative, are from this source, may be readily inferred. - 1749, February 21.4149.
THAT HOLY TRUTHS ARE TO BE FOUND IN A CERTAIN PLACE OF THE HEAD. When angelic spirits spoke respecting the circumstance, that it was not the true internal sense which was written in those days, or in that day, it was given them to inspect whether the assertion were true. They made their researches deeply and profoundly, and with a clear sense that the truth was then in a certain region, to which the thoughts penetrated, in the left side of the head, where are truths and falsities, just as in the right side of the head are cupidities. It was, as I remarked, a certain place in the left region of the head, and it was said to them that they should search there, which was done [and with the result described]. Hence it may appear that certain truths and falsities are to be found in certain places on the left side of the head. I wondered at this, but could come to no other conclusion, but that such is the fact; so that truths and falses have their own places in the head. Where the false exists then that part of the head is indurated and is pained even to torture when inspected or explored by angelic spirits, but when truths exist, then the part is soft and free from pain, and may thus be inspected by angelic spirits. - 1749, February 21.4150.
CONCERNING SPIRITS WHO THINK [MUCH] OF THE FUTURE. There are spirits who ponder upon the future, which they do from a habit and nature contracted in the world. They appear with a broad face, but it is not properly a face, but barely the broad area of a face, which becomes narrow in proportion as the area is narrow, nor is there aught of life in it; it is, as it were, simply a certain wooden something; neither do they speak but only think. By their means the sense of a man becomes so general that he thinks of nothing distinctly, and thus the mind remains indeterminate. Such is the state of those who give way to prevailing thoughts of the future, and thence become [mentally] emaciated, and void of understanding. - 1749, February 22.
4133-1 A Swedish phrase, of which we are unable to ascertain the import.