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DLW 113. Heaven is called "the dwelling-place of God," also "the throne of God," and from this it is believed that God is there as is a king in his kingdom. But God (that is, the Lord) is in the sun above the heavens, and by His presence in heat and light, is in the heavens (as is shown in the last two paragraphs). But although the Lord is present in heaven in that manner, still He is there as He is in Himself. For the distance between the sun and heaven is not distance, but appearance of distance; and since that distance is only an appearance it follows that the Lord Himself is in heaven, for He is in the love and wisdom of the angels of heaven; and since He is in the love and wisdom of all angels, and the angel constitute heaven, He is in the whole heaven (n. 108-130, 112).

DLW 114. The Lord not only is in heaven, but also is heaven itself; for love and wisdom are what make the angel, and these two are the Lord's in the angels; from which it follows that the Lord is heaven. For angels are not angels from what is their own; what is their own is altogether like what is man's own, which is evil. An angel's own is such because all angels were once men, and this own clings to the angels from their birth. It is only put aside, and so far as it is put aside the angels receive love and wisdom, that is, the Lord, in themselves. Anyone, if he will only elevate his understanding a little, can see that the Lord can dwell in angels, only in what is His, that is, in what is His very own, which is love and wisdom, and not at all in the selfhood of angels, which is evil. From this it is, that so far as evil is put away so far the Lord is in them, and so far they are angels. The very angelic of heaven is Love Divine and Wisdom Divine. This Divine is called the angelic when it is in angels. From this, again, it is evident that angels are angels from the Lord, and not from themselves; consequently, the same is true of heaven.

DLW 115. But how the Lord is in an angel and an angel in the Lord cannot be comprehended, unless the nature of their conjunction is known. Conjunction is of the Lord with the angel and of the angel with the Lord; conjunction, therefore, is reciprocal. On the part of the angel it is as follows. The angel, in like manner as man, has no other perception than that he is in love and wisdom from himself, consequently that love and wisdom are, as it were, his or his own. Unless he so perceived there would be no conjunction, thus the Lord would not be in him, nor he in the Lord. Nor can it be possible for the Lord to be in any angel or man, unless the one in whom the Lord is, with love and wisdom, has a perception and sense as if they were his. By this means the Lord is not only received, but also, when received, is retained, and likewise loved in return. And by this, also, the angel is made wise and continues wise. Who can wish to love the Lord and his neighbor, and who can wish to be wise, without a sense and perception that what he loves, learns, and imbibes is, as it were, his own? Who otherwise can retain it in himself? If this were not so, the inflowing love and wisdom would have no abiding-place, for it would flow through and not affect; thus an angel would not be an angel, nor would man be a man; he would be merely like something inanimate. From all this it can be seen that there must be an ability to reciprocate that there may be conjunction.

DLW 116. It shall now be explained how it comes that an angel perceives and feels as his, and thus receives and retains that which yet is not his; for an angel is not an angel from what is his, but from those things which he has from the Lord. The essence of the matter is this:--Every angel has freedom and rationality; these two he has to the end that he may be capable of receiving love and wisdom from the Lord. Yet neither of these, freedom nor rationality, is his, they are the Lord's in him. But since the two are intimately conjoined to his life, so intimately that they may be said to be joined into it, they appear to be his own. It is from them that he is able to think and will, and to speak and act; and what he thinks, wills, speaks, and does from them, appears as if it were from himself. This gives him the ability to reciprocate, and by means of this conjunction is possible. Yet so far as an angel believes that love and wisdom are really in him, and thus lays claim to them for himself as if they were his, so far the angelic is not in him, and therefore he has no conjunction with the Lord; for he is not in truth, and as truth makes one with the light of heaven, so far he cannot be in heaven; for he thereby denies that he lives from the Lord, and believes that he lives from himself, and that he therefore possesses Divine essence. In these two, freedom and rationality, the life which is called angelic and human consists. From all this it can be seen that for the sake of conjunction with the Lord,- the angel has the ability to reciprocate, but that this ability, in itself considered, is not his but the Lord's. From this it is, that if he abuses his ability to reciprocate, by which he perceives and feels as his what is the Lord's, which is done by appropriating it to himself he falls from the angelic state. That conjunction is reciprocal, the Lord Himself teaches (John 14:20-24; 15:4-6); also that the conjunction of the Lord with man and of man with the Lord, is in those things of the Lord that are called His words (John 15:7).

DLW 117. Some are of the opinion that Adam was in such liberty or freedom of choice as to be able to love God and be wise from himself, and that this freedom of choice was lost in his posterity. But this is an error; for man is not life, but is a recipient of life (n. 4-6, 54-60); and he who is a recipient of life cannot love and be wise from anything of his own; consequently, when Adam willed to be wise and to love from what was his own he fell from wisdom and love, and was cast out of Paradise.

DLW 118. What has just been said of an angel is likewise true of heaven, which consists of angels, since the Divine in greatest and least things is the same (n. 77-82). What is said of an angel and of heaven is likewise true of man and the Church, for the angel of heaven and the man of the Church act as one through conjunction; in fact, a man of the Church is an angel, in respect to the interiors which are of his mind. By a man of the Church is meant a man in whom the Church is.

Divine Love and Wisdom previous · next Author:  E. Swedenborg (1688-1772). www.TheisticScience.org