There Is a Correspondence of Heaven with Everything Earthly (Continued)

Everything is a correspondent that arises and endures in nature according to the divine design. What makes the divine design is the divine good that emanates from the Lord. It begins from him, emanates from him through the heavens in sequence into the world, and there comes to a close in things most remote. Things there that are in accord with the design are correspondences.

The things that are in accord with the design are everything that is good and is perfected for some use, for everything good is good according to its usefulness. Its form reflects what is true because the true is the form of the good. This is why everything in the whole world and in the world of nature that is in the divine design goes back to what is good and what is true.

from Heaven and Hell, Section 107


Previously Cited: 6/19/2017

There Is a Correspondence of Heaven with Everything Earthly (Continued)

Things that are above the earth are also correspondences, things like the sun, the moon, and the stars, and also things that occur in our atmospheres like clouds, mists, rainstorms, lightning bolts, and thunderclaps. The emanations of the sun in its presence and absence like light and shade, warmth and cold, are also correspondences; and so are such corollaries as the times of the year called spring, summer, fall, and winter, and the times of the day—morning, noon, evening, and night.

In a word, absolutely everything in nature, from the smallest to the greatest, is a correspondence. The reason correspondences occur is that the natural world, including everything in it, arises and is sustained from the spiritual world, and both worlds come from the Divine. We say that it also is sustained because everything is sustained from that from which it arose, enduring being in fact a perpetual arising; and since nothing can endure independently, but needs something prior, it therefore needs a First, and if it were separated from that First, it would utterly perish and disappear.

from Heaven and Hell, Sections 105-106


Previously Cited: 6/18/2017

There Is a Correspondence of Heaven with Everything Earthly

IN the preceding chapter, we have stated what correspondence is, and have explained as well that absolutely everything in the soul’s body is a correspondence. Next in orderly sequence we need to explain that everything earthly and in general everything in our world is a correspondence.

All earthly things are differentiated into three classes that we call “kingdoms,” namely the animal kingdom, the vegetable kingdom, and the mineral kingdom. Members of the animal kingdom are correspondences on the first level because they are alive. Members of the vegetable kingdom are correspondences on the second level because they merely grow. Members of the mineral kingdom are correspondences on the third level because they neither live nor grow.

The correspondences in the animal kingdom are the living creatures of various kinds, both those that walk and creep on the earth and those that fly in the air. We need not list them by name, because they are familiar. Correspondences in the vegetable kingdom are all the things that grow and bloom in gardens and forests and farms and meadows, which again are so familiar that they need not be listed by name. Correspondences in the mineral kingdom are metals noble and base, stones precious and common, and soils of various kinds, as well as bodies of water. Beyond these, things made from these elements by human industry for our use are correspondences, things such as foods of all kinds, garments, houses, major buildings, and so on.

from Heaven ans Hell, Sections 103-104


Previously Cited: 6/17/2017

Heaven and Hell come from the Human Race (Continued)

Once we have learned about the divine design, we can understand that we were created to become angels because the ultimate boundary of that design is found in us (Section 304), which means that in us the substance of heavenly and angelic wisdom can take form and can be restored and multiplied. The divine design never comes to rest part way, forming something without a boundary: that is not the design in its fullness and perfection. Rather, it presses on to its ultimate boundary, and when it has reached that limit it takes form; and then by means that it gathers on that level it restores itself and produces more, which is accomplished by procreation. This is why the seedbed of heaven is on this lowest level.

The reason the Lord rose not only in respect to his spirit but in respect to his body as well is that when the Lord was in the world, he glorified his whole human nature—that is, he made it divine. In fact, his soul, which he received from the Father, was essentially the Divine itself, and his body became an image of that soul (that is, of the Father) and therefore also divine. This is why he, unlike anyone else, rose in both spirit and body. He showed this to his disciples—who believed they were seeing a spirit when they saw him—by saying, “Look at my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I do” (Luke 24:36–38 [24:39]). In this way he pointed out that he was not a person in spirit only, but in body as well.

To let people know that we live after death, and that then we come into either heaven or hell depending on our lives, I have been shown a great deal about our state after death that will be presented in sequence below when we come to a description of the world of spirits.

from Heaven and Hell, Sections 315-317


Previously Cited: 5/15/2017

Section 304: Published 9/7/2017

Heaven and Hell Come from the Human Race (Continued)

We may conclude that heaven is from the human race from the fact that angelic minds and our minds are very much alike. Both enjoy abilities to understand, perceive, and intend. Both are formed for the acceptance of heaven. In fact, our minds are just as wise as angelic minds; but they are not as wise in this world because we are in an earthly body, and in an earthly body our spiritual mind thinks in a natural manner. It is different, though, when it is freed from its tie to the body. Then we no longer think naturally, but spiritually, and when we think spiritually, we think thoughts that are incomprehensible and inexpressible to a natural person. This means we are as wise as angels. We may gather from this that our own inner person, what we call our spirit, is essentially an angel (see above, Section 57).

Once it is freed from the earthly body it is in a human form just like that of an angel. (On angels being in perfect human form, see Sections 73–77 above.) However, when our inner person has not been opened upward but only downward, then we are in a human form after we are freed from this body, but it is a frightening and diabolical form because it cannot look upward toward heaven, only downward toward hell.

from Heaven and Hell, Section 314


Previously Cited: 5/14/2017

Section 57: Published 6/13/2019

Sections 73-77: Published 3/9/2018-3/10/2018

Heaven and Hell Come from the Human Race (Continued)

Many of the scholars of the Christian world are dumbfounded when they find themselves after death in bodies, wearing clothes, and in houses the way they were in this world. When they call to mind what they had thought about life after death, the soul, spirits, and heaven and hell, they are embarrassed and say that they had been thinking nonsense. They say that people of simple faith had been far wiser than they. Some scholars were examined who had completely convinced themselves in this kind of belief and attributed everything to nature.

It turned out that their inner natures were completely closed off, while their more outward natures were open. This meant that they were not looking toward heaven but toward the world, and therefore toward hell; for to the extent that our deeper natures are opened, we look toward heaven, while to the extent that they are closed and our more outward natures are open, we look toward hell. Our deeper levels are formed for the acceptance of heaven and our more outward ones for acceptance of the world; and if we accept the world without accepting heaven at the same time, we are accepting hell.

from Heaven and Hell, Section 313


Previously Cited: 5/13/2017

Heaven and Hell Come from the Human Race (Continued)

This belief among church people is also the cause of their belief that no one will arrive in heaven or hell before the time of the Last Judgment, which they have come to believe will be a time when everything they can see perishes and new things come into being, when souls will return into their bodies and then begin once more to live as people because of this reunion. This faith implies the other, about angels having been created in the beginning, for it is not possible to believe that heaven and hell come from the human race when you believe that no one is going to get there until the end of the world.

So to convince people that this is not the case, I have been allowed to associate with angels and to talk with people in hell for several years now, sometimes constantly from morning until evening, and so to learn about heaven and about hell. The purpose of all this is that church people should remain no longer in their mistaken beliefs about a resurrection on Judgment Day and about the state of their souls in the meanwhile, or about angels and the devil. Because this faith is a mistaken one, it brings darkness with it; and for people who think about such things on the basis of their own intellect, it leads to doubt and eventually to denial. They are actually saying in their hearts, “How can such a vast heaven and so many stars be destroyed and disappear, along with the sun and the moon? How can stars that are larger than the earth fall on the earth? How can bodies that have been eaten by worms and destroyed by decay and scattered to the four winds be reunited to their souls? Where have these souls been in the meanwhile, and what have they been like without any of the senses they had in their bodies?”

There are many other questions like these, which do not accord with belief because they are incomprehensible, and for many people they are destroying any belief in a life after death, in heaven and hell, and along with these the rest of the contents of the faith of the church. This destruction can be observed in people who say, “Who has come back from heaven and told us that it exists, or from hell, to say that it exists? What is this business about people being tortured by fire to eternity? What is this Judgment Day? Haven’t we been waiting for it for centuries, all in vain?” along with any number of other things that imply a denial of everything.

Many people who are particularly skilled in worldly affairs think like this; so to prevent them from further disturbing and misleading people of simple faith and simple heart and bringing on a hellish darkness concerning God, heaven, eternal life, and the other matters that follow from them, the deeper reaches of my spirit have been opened by the Lord, enabling me to talk after their death with all the people I have ever known during their physical lives. I have talked with some for days, with some for months, and with some for a year. I have talked with so many others that it would be no exaggeration to talk in terms of a hundred thousand, many in heaven and many in hell. I have talked with some just two days after their deaths and told them that now their funerals and burial rites were being performed so that they could be interred; to which they have responded that it was a good thing they had cast off what had served them as a body for their functions in our world, wanting me to say that they were not dead at all. They were just as alive and just as human as ever, having simply crossed over from one world to another. They were not aware of having lost anything, since they were just as much in a body as before, enjoyed volition and understanding just as before, and had thoughts and affections, sensation, and desires similar to the ones they had in our world.

Many people who have just died, when they have discovered that they are living persons just as they were before, and in a similar state (for our first state after death is like the one we were in on earth, although this changes gradually for us either toward heaven or toward hell), have been moved by a newfound joy at still being alive. They have said they would not have believed it. They were absolutely amazed that they had been in such ignorance and blindness about the state of life after death, all the more so that this is true of people within the church, who could be in more light about such matters than all the rest of the whole world. Now for the first time they were seeing the reason for this blindness and ignorance, namely, that their outward concerns, their concerns for worldly and bodily matters, preoccupied and filled their minds so completely that they could not be raised into heaven’s light and look into ecclesiastical subjects beyond the formalities of doctrine. When bodily and worldly matters are loved as much as they are today, nothing flows in from them but darkness when the mind tries to press further.

from Heaven and Hell, Section 312


Previously Cited: 5/12/2017

Heaven and Hell Come from the Human Race

PEOPLE in the Christian world are totally unaware that heaven and hell come from the human race. They actually believe that angels were created in the beginning and constitute heaven, and that the devil or Satan was an angel of light who became rebellious and was cast out together with his faction, and that this gave rise to hell.

Angels are utterly amazed that there can be this kind of belief in the Christian world, and even more so that people know absolutely nothing about heaven, even though this is a primary doctrine of the church. Knowing that this kind of ignorance is prevalent, they are profoundly delighted that it has now pleased the Lord to reveal to us so much about heaven—and about hell as well—and so as much as possible to dispel the darkness that is rising daily because this church is drawing to a close.

So they want me to testify on their behalf that in all heaven there is not a single angel who was created as such in the beginning, nor is there in all hell a devil who was created as an angel of light and cast out. Rather, all the people in heaven and in hell are from the human race—in heaven the ones who have lived in heavenly love and faith, and in hell the ones who have lived in hellish love and faith. Hell as a whole is what is called the devil and Satan. The hell at the back, where the people called evil demons live, is the devil, and the hell that is in front, where the people live who are called evil spirits, is Satan. We will describe later what each hell is like.

They insisted that the reason the Christian world has adopted this kind of belief about people in heaven and people in hell is that they have taken a few passages of the Word, understanding them only in their literal meaning, with no enlightenment or instruction based on genuine doctrine from the Word. Yet the literal meaning of the Word, without the light of genuine doctrine, leads the mind astray in all directions, giving rise to ignorance, heresy, and error.

from Heaven and Hell, Section 311


Previously Cited: 5/11/2017

How Angels Talk with Us (Continued)

No angel or spirit is allowed to talk with one of us from the angel’s or spirit’s own memory, only from that of the individual in question. Angels and spirits actually have memory just as we do. If a spirit were to talk with us from his or her own memory, then it would seem to us entirely as though the thoughts were our own, when they would really belong to the spirit. It is like remembering something that we have never seen or heard. I have been granted knowledge of the truth of this by experience.

This is why some of the ancients were of the opinion that after some thousands of years they would return to their former life and all its deeds, and that they had in fact returned. They gathered this from the fact that sometimes a kind of memory would come up of things that they had never seen or heard. This happened because spirits had flowed from their own memory into the images of these people’s thoughts.

There are also spirits called natural and physical spirits who do not unite with our thoughts when they come to us the way other spirits do but rather enter our bodies and take over all its senses, talking through our mouths and acting through our limbs. It seems to them entirely as though everything of ours were theirs. These are the spirits that possess people; but they have been cast into hell by the Lord and moved decisively away; so possession like this no longer occurs nowadays.

from Heaven and Hell, Sections 256-257


Previously Cited: 3/3/2017

How Angels Talk with Us (Continued)

To illustrate what the union of angels and spirits with us is like, I may cite a few memorable instances that will serve to illuminate the subject and enable some conclusions to be drawn. When angels and spirits turn toward us, it seems to them exactly as though our language were their own and that they have no other. This is because they are involved in our language at such times, and do not even remember their own. The moment they turn away from us, though, they are back in their own angelic and spiritual language and have no knowledge whatever of ours. The same thing has happened with me when I have been in the company of angels and in a state like theirs. Then I have talked with them in their language and knew nothing of my own. I could not even remember it. However, the moment I was no longer in their company I was back in my own language.

It is also worth noting that when angels and spirits turn toward us, they can talk with us even from a great distance. They have talked with me from far off just as audibly as though they were nearby. Still, when they turn away from us and talk with each other, nothing of what they say is audible to us even though this is happening right next to our ears. This has enabled me to see that in the spiritual world, all union depends on the way people are facing.

Again, it is worth noting that many of them can talk with one of us at the same time, and that person with them. They send some particular spirit from themselves to the individual with whom they want to talk, and this envoy spirit turns toward the person while the others turn toward their [envoy] spirit and so concentrate their thoughts, which the spirit then presents. It seems to such envoys entirely as though they were talking on their own, and to the others as though they themselves were. So a union of several with one is achieved by the way they face. But we will say more later about these envoy spirits, called agents, and the communication that takes place through them.

from Heaven and Hell, Section 255


Previously Cited: 3/2/2017