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thought, when confirmed, is fallacy; ye therefore are misguided by appearance, and the fallacy thence resulting, in consequence of supposing, that all things which a man willeth and thinketh, and which he thence doeth and speaketh, are in him, and consequently from him, when nevertheless not one of all such things is in him, but merely the state and capacity of receiving what entereth by influx. Man is not life in himself, but is an organ receptive of life; the Lord is Life in Himself, according to what He saith in John: “As the Father hath Life in Himself, so hath He given to the Son to have life in Himself," chap. v. 26; and in other places, as John xi. 25, Chap. xiv. 6, 19. There are two things constituent of life, which are love and wisdom, or what amounts to the same, the good of love and the truth of wisdom: these two enter by influx from God, and are received by man as if they were his, and by reason of such appearance and sensation, they proceed from him as if they were his; this appearance and sensation on man's side are granted by the Lord, in order that what entereth by influx may affect him, and thus be received and remain. But as all evil likewise entereth by influx, not from God, but from hell, and is received with satisfaction, because man is born such an organ as to imbibe it readily, therefore no more of good is received from God, than is proportioned to the quantity of evil removed by man, which is effected by repentance, and at the same time by faith in the Lord. That love and wisdom, charity and faith, or, to speak in more general terms, the good of love and charity and the truth of wisdom and faith, enter into man by influx, and that such things as enter by influx appear in man entirely as if they were his own, and consequently proceed from him as his own, may be plainly seen from the case of vision, hearing, smelling, tasting, and touching; for whatever things are made sensible in the organs of those senses, enter by influx extraneously, and are perceived in them: the case is
similar in respect to the organs of the internal senses, only with this difference, that spiritual things, which are not apparent to the bodily senses, enter by influx into the latter, but natural things, which are so apparent, into the former. In a Word, man is an organ receptive of life from God, consequently he is receptive of good in proportion as he desisteth from evil: the power to desist from evil the Lord giveth to every man, because He giveth him to will and to understand; and whatsoever man doeth from the will according to understanding, or, what is the same thing, from freedom of will according to conviction of the understanding, that remaineth, and by this the Lord introduceth man into a state of conjunction with Himself, in which state He reforms, regenerates, and saves him. The life which entereth by influx, is life proceeding from the Lord, which life is also called the Spirit of God, and, in the Word, the Holy Spirit, of which also it is said, that it enlightens and quickens man, nay, that it operateth in him; but this life is varied and modified, according to the organization induced upon it by love. There is also another circumstance which may serve to convince you, that all the good of love and charity, and all the truth of wisdom and faith, enter by influx, and are not in man; which is this; that whosoever supposeth such things to be in him by virtue of his creation, must of necessity at last be led to suppose, that God infused Himself into man, and consequently that men are in part gods; when nevertheless, all who confirm themselves in such a belief, acquire a diabolical nature, and, in the spiritual world, smell like putrid carcases. Besides, what is all human action but the action of the mind? For the mind bringeth its inclination into act, and its thoughts into words of speech, by means of its organ the body; of consequence, whilst the mind is under the Lord's guidance, the action and speech are also under His guidance; and action and speech are under the Lord's guidance, when He
is believed in. Unless this were the case, what possible reason can be assigned, why the Lord in a thousand passages of His Word hath commanded, that man should love his neighbour, that he should perform the good works of charity, that he should bring forth fruit like a tree, and that he should keep the commandments, and do them, and all with a view to salvation? Also, to what purpose is it said, that man shall be judged according to his deeds, or works; that heaven and life will be the portion of him that doeth good, but hell and death of him that doeth evil? How could the Lord possibly make such declarations, supposing that what proceeds from man must needs be meritorious, and consequently evil? Know therefore, that if the mind be charity, the action is charity also; but if the mind be faith alone, which is a faith separate from spiritual charity, the action also is such faith." As I ended these words, they who were sitting under the laurel said, "We comprehend the justness of thy observations, and yet we do not comprehend it:" and I replied, "Ye comprehend the justness of my observations, by virtue of that common perception, which is communicated to every man by an influx of light from heaven, when any truth is uttered in his presence; but ye do not comprehend it, by reason of that peculiar perception which every man has in consequence of an influx of light from the world:* these two perceptions, the internal and external, or the spiritual and natural, are united, and make a one, with all wise men ; and ye also may unite and make them a one, if ye will look to the Lord, and put away evils." Seeing that they understood these words, I plucked off some twigs from a vine that was near me, and presenting them in my hand, I said, "Do you suppose that this is from me, or from the Lord ?" and they replied, "That it was of (ex) me from (a) the
* See note, n. 40, on the light of the world.
Lord;" and lo! the twigs in their hands instantly put forth grapes. As I was taking my leave, I observed a table, made of cedar wood, on which lay a book, overshadowed with a green olive-tree, whose trunk was entwined about with a vine: I viewed it attentively, and lo! it was a book which I had written, entitled, ARCANA CELESTIA ;* and I said, "In that book it is fully proved, that man is an organ receptive of life, and not life itself; and that life cannot possibly be created, and dwell in man in such a created state, any more than light can dwell in the eye."
462. THE FOURTH MEMORABLE RELATION.
I was once looking towards the sea-coast in the spiritual world, when I observed a grand dock or arsenal for shipping: I walked towards it, and taking a nearer view, I saw vessels of various sizes, laden with all kinds of wares and merchandize, which were distributed liberally to all comers, by some boys and girls that sat on the decks. And I heard those boys and girls say, "We are in expectation of seeing our beautiful turtles, which will soon rise out of the sea, and come to us." And lo! I saw turtles of different sizes, both great and small, on whose shells and scales there sat young turtles, which looked towards the islands that surrounded the coast. The parent turtles had two heads, one of large size, covered over with a shell, like that which covered their bodies, so that they were of a glowing polish, and the other of small size, such as turtles generally have, which they drew back into the fore-parts of the body, and inserted it in a manner scarce discernible, into the larger head. I
* This work appears to be mentione dby an error of the press, or some other accident, for the Angelic Wisdom respecting the Divine Love and the Divine Wisdom, which the book on the table is stated to have been, in the Apocalypse Revealed, n. 875, where this memorable relation was first published. It is shewn, indeed, both in the Arcana Cœlestia and the in Angelic Wisdom, "that man is but an organ receptive of life, &c." but this is not so expressly the design of the former work as of the latter.
kept my eyes fixed on the large shining head and observed that it had a face like that of a man, and that it talked with the boys and girls that were sitting on the decks, and licked their hands, whereupon the boys and girls gently stroked them and gave them food and dainties, with various precious articles, as silk for clothes, almug wood for tables, purple for ornaments, and SCARLET FOR COLOURING. Having made these observations, I was desirous to learn what each thing represented, because I knew that all appearances in the spiritual world are correspondences, and are representative of such spiritual things as relate to affection and it's derivative thought: and immediately angels entered into conversation with me from heaven and said, "Thou knowest already what is represented by a dock or arsenal for shipping, and also what by ships, and by boys and girls on their decks, but thou dost not know what is signified by turtles: understand therefore that turtles represent such of the clergy, as entirely separate faith from charity and its good works, affirming in their own minds, that there is no sort of conjunction between them whatever, but that the Holy Ghost, through faith in God the Father for the sake of His Son's merits, entereth into man, and purifieth his interiors till it reaches to man's own will, of which will they make, as it were, an oval plane, supposing that when the operation of the Holy Ghost approacheth that plane, it turneth itself about it on its left side, and never entereth into contact with it, and that thus the interior or superior part of the human faculties (ingenium) is intended for God, and the exterior or inferior part for man, and consequently that nothing which man does appeareth in God's sight, whether it be good or evil, the good not appearing because it is meritorious, nor the evil because it is evil, whence if either were to appear, the man would inevitably perish; but as they are thus kept out of sight, they suppose, that it is allowable for a man to will, to think,