June 26, 2022

Rationality and Liberty

Selection from Divine Providence ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
Man Should Act from Freedom in Accordance with Reason

Everyone knows that man has the freedom to think and will just as he pleases, but not the freedom to say whatever he thinks, or to do whatever he wills; therefore the freedom that is here meant is spiritual freedom, and not natural freedom, except when the two make one. For thinking and willing are spiritual, but speaking and doing are natural. Moreover, these are clearly distinguished in man; for a man is able to think what he does not speak, and to will what he does not do; which makes clear that the spiritual and the natural in man are discriminated; consequently man can pass from one to the other only through a boundary, such a boundary as may be likened to a door that must be unfastened and opened. This door stands open as it were in those who think and will from reason in accordance with the civil laws of the government and the moral laws of society; for such say what they think and do as they will; but the door stands shut as it were in those who think and will in opposition to those laws. Whoever attends to his volitions and consequent actions will notice that such a boundary intervenes, and sometimes frequently in a single conversation or a single action. This has been premised to make clear that to act from freedom in accordance with reason means to think and will freely and thus to speak and do freely what is in accordance with reason.

But as few are aware that this can be a law of Divine Providence, for the reason chiefly that this gives a man freedom also to think evil and falsity, although the Divine Providence is continually leading him to think and will what is good and true.

Man, possesses reason and freedom, or rationality and liberty, and these two faculties are in man from the Lord. ... But as many doubts may arise respecting either of these when they are made a subject of thought, at the outset I will merely advance something respecting: —
First, however, it must be known that all freedom is a property of love, insomuch that love and freedom are one. And as love is the life of man, freedom also belongs to his life. For every enjoyment that man has is from his love; no enjoyment is possible from any other source; and acting from love's enjoyment is acting from freedom; for a man is led by enjoyment as a thing is borne along by the current of a river. Since, then, there are numerous loves, some harmonious and some discordant, it follows that there are likewise numerous kinds of freedom; but in general three, natural, rational, and spiritual.

Natural freedom every one has by inheritance. From it man loves nothing but self and the world; his first life is nothing else. And as from these two loves all evils spring, and thus it comes that evils belong to the love, it follows that thinking and willing evils is man's natural freedom; and when he has confirmed evils in himself by reasonings he does evils from freedom in accordance with his reason. Thus his doing evils is from his faculty that is called liberty; and his confirming them is from his faculty that is called rationality.

A man's desire, for example, to commit adultery, to defraud, to blaspheme, to take revenge, is from the love into which he is born; and when he confirms these evils in himself, and thereby makes them allowable, then, from the enjoyment of the love of them, he as it were freely in accordance with reason thinks and wills them, and, so far as civil laws do not prevent, speaks and acts accordingly. It is from the Lord's Divine providence that man is permitted to do this, because he has freedom or liberty. Man is in this kind of freedom by nature, because of inheritance; and all those are in it who by means of reasonings have confirmed it in themselves from the enjoyment of love of self and the world.

Rational freedom is from the love of reputation with a view to honor or gain. The enjoyment of this love lies in appearing externally as a moral man; and because man loves such a reputation, he does not defraud, commit adultery, take revenge, or blaspheme; and because he makes this a matter of reason, he acts from freedom in accordance with his reason in sincere, just, chaste, and friendly ways; and furthermore, from this reason he can advocate such conduct. But if his rational is merely natural and not also spiritual, such freedom is merely external freedom, not internal freedom; for he does not love these goods in the least inwardly, but only outwardly for the sake of his reputation, as has been said, and for this reason the good deeds that he does are not in themselves good. He may even assert that these things ought to be done for the public welfare; but this he says not from any love for the public welfare, but from a love for his own honor or gain. His freedom, therefore, derives nothing from a love for the public welfare, neither does his reason, since this assents to his love. Consequently, this rational freedom is a more internal natural freedom. This freedom, too, by the Lord's Divine providence remains with everyone.

Spiritual freedom is from a love for eternal life. Into that love and its enjoyment no one comes except he that thinks evils to be sins and in consequence does not will them, and at the same time looks to the Lord. As soon as one does this he is in that freedom. For one's ability not to will evils because they are sins, and not to do them for that reason, comes from the more internal or higher freedom which is from his more internal or higher love. At first such a freedom does not seem to be freedom, and yet it is; and afterwards it so appears, and then man acts from freedom itself, in accordance with reason itself, in thinking, willing, speaking, and doing what is good and true. This freedom increases as natural freedom decreases and becomes subservient; and it conjoins itself with rational freedom and purifies it.

Any one may come into this freedom if he is but willing to think that life is eternal, and that the temporary enjoyment and bliss of life in time are but as a fleeting shadow, compared with the never ending enjoyment and bliss of a life in eternity; and this a man can think if he wishes, because he has rationality and liberty, and because the Lord, from whom these two faculties are derived, continually gives the ability.

(from Divine Providence 71-73)

June 24, 2022

Thinking from Divine Ideas

Selection from Arcana Coelestia ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
A Representation of the Lord's Kingdom in a Mental View of the Universe

And He led him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and number the stars, if thou be able to number them; and He said unto him, So shall thy seed be. (Genesis 15:5)
"Heaven" in the Word, in the internal sense, does not signify the heavens which appear to the eyes; but the Lord's kingdom, universally and particularly. When a man who is looking at internal things from external sees the heavens, he does not think at all of the starry heaven, but of the angelic heaven; and when he sees the sun, he does not think of the sun, but of the Lord, as being the Sun of heaven. So too when he sees the moon, and the stars also; and when he sees the immensity of the heavens, he does not think of their immensity, but of the immeasurable and infinite power of the Lord. It is the same when he sees all other things, for there is nothing that is not representative.

In like manner as regards the things on the earth; as when he beholds the dawning of the day he does not think of the dawn, but of the arising of all things from the Lord, and of progression into the day of wisdom. So when he sees gardens, groves, and flower-beds, his eye remains not fixed on any tree, its blossom, leaf, and fruit; but on the heavenly things which these represent; nor on any flower, and its beauty and pleasantness; but on what they represent in the other life. For there is nothing beautiful and delightful in the skies or on the earth, which is not in some way representative of the Lord's kingdom:
I have spoken with angels concerning representatives, to the effect that there is nothing in the vegetable kingdom on the earth that does not in some way represent the Lord's kingdom. They said that all the beautiful and graceful things in the vegetable kingdom derive their origin from the Lord through heaven; and that when the celestial and spiritual things of the Lord inflow into nature, such things have actual existence; and that this is the source of the vegetative soul or life. Hence come representatives. And as this is not known in the world, it was called a heavenly secret. (AC 1632)
This is the "looking toward heaven" which signifies a representation of the Lord's kingdom in a mental view of the universe.

The reason why all things in the sky and on earth are representative, is that they have come forth and do continually come forth, that is, subsist, from the influx of the Lord through heaven. It is with these things as it is with the human body, which comes forth and subsists by means of the soul; on which account all things in the body both in general and in particular are representative of the soul. The soul is in the use and the end; but the body is in the performance of them. All effects, whatever they may be, are in like manner representatives of the uses which are the causes; and the uses are representative of the ends which belong to the first principles.

They who are in Divine ideas never come to a stand in the objects of the external sight; but from them and in them constantly see internal things. The veriest internal things themselves are those which are of the Lord's kingdom, thus those which are in the veriest end itself. It is the same with the Word of the Lord; he who is in Divine things never regards the Lord's Word from the letter; but regards the letter and the literal sense as being representative and significative of the celestial and spiritual things of the church and of the Lord's kingdom. To him the literal sense is merely an instrumental means for thinking of these. Such was the Lord's sight.

(from Arcana Coelestia 1807)

June 22, 2022

Passing from One World into the Other

Selection from Heaven and Hell ~ Emanuel Swedenborg

It has been proved to me by manifold experience that when man passes from the natural world into the spiritual, as he does when he dies, he carries with him all his things, that is, those things that belong to him as a man, except his earthly body. For when man enters the spiritual world or the life after death, he is in a body as he was in the world, with no apparent difference, since he neither sees nor feels any difference. But his body is spiritual, and thus separated or purified from all that is earthly; and when what is spiritual touches and sees what is spiritual, it is just the same as when what is natural touches and sees what is natural. So when a man has become a spirit, he does not know otherwise than that he is in his own body in which he had been in the world and thus does not know that he has died.

Moreover, the spirit man rejoices in every sense, both external and internal, that he enjoyed in the world; he sees as before, he hears and speaks as before, smells and tastes, and when touched, he feels the touch as before; he also strives, desires, longs for, thinks, reflects, is affected, loves, wills, as before; and one who is delighted with studies, reads and writes as before. In a word, when a man passes from one life into the other, or from one world into the other, it is like passing from one place into another, carrying with him all things that he possesses in himself as a man; so that it cannot be said that after death, which is only the death of the earthly body, the man will have lost anything of his own.

Furthermore, he carries with him his natural memory, retaining everything whatever that he has heard, seen, read, learned, or thought in the world from earliest infancy even to the end of life; although the natural objects that are in the memory, since they cannot be reproduced in the spiritual world, are at rest, just as they are with a man when he is not thinking from them. Nevertheless, they are reproduced when it pleases the Lord. . . . A sensual man finds it impossible to believe that such is the state of man after death, because he cannot comprehend it; for a sensual man must needs think naturally even about spiritual things; therefore, anything that does not appeal to his senses, that is, that he does not see with his bodily eyes and touch with his hands as is said of Thomas, he denies that it is.
Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her. Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.

Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.

And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.

Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God. Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.
(John 20:18-29)
And yet there is a great distinction between man's life in the spiritual world and his life in the natural world, in regard both to his external senses and their affections and his internal senses and their affections. Those who are in heaven have more exquisite senses, that is, a keener sight and hearing, and also think more wisely than when they were in the world; for they see from the light of heaven, which surpasses by many degrees the light of the world; and they hear by means of a spiritual atmosphere, which likewise surpasses by many degrees the earthly atmosphere. The difference in respect of the external senses is like the difference between a clear [sky] and a dark cloud in the world, or between noonday light and evening shade. For the light of heaven, since it is Divine Truth, enables the eyes of angels to perceive and distinguish the most minute things.

(from Heaven and Hell 461, 2)

June 17, 2022

Divine Providence for the Salvation of Man

Selection from Divine Providence ~ Emanuel Swedenborg

The operation of the Divine providence for the salvation of man begins at his birth and continues until the end of his life and afterwards to eternity.
Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows. . . . And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye, then, be not able to do that which is least, why are ye anxious concerning the rest? Consider the lilies how they grow. If, then, God so clothe the grass, which is today in the field and tomorrow is cast into the oven, how much more will He clothe you, O ye men of little faith? (Luke 12: 6, 7, 25-28).
The operation of the Divine providence for the salvation of man is said to begin at his birth and to continue unto the end of his life. To understand this it must be known that the Lord sees what man is, and foresees what he wills to be, thus what he will be; and that he may be a man and therefore immortal the freedom of his will must not be taken away. Consequently the Lord foresees man's state after death, and provides for it from his birth until the end of his life.
With the evil the Lord provides by permitting evils and continually withdrawing them from evils; while with the good He provides by leading to good. Thus the Divine providence is unceasingly in the work of saving men.
But no more can be saved than are willing to be saved, and those are willing to be saved who acknowledge God and are led by Him; and those are unwilling who do not acknowledge God and who lead themselves; for such do not think about eternal life or about salvation, while the others do. This the Lord sees and still He leads them, and leads them in accordance with the laws of His Divine providence, contrary to which laws He cannot act, since to act contrary to them would be to act contrary to His Divine love and contrary to His Divine wisdom, which is to act contrary to Himself.

Since, then, the Lord foresees the states of all after death, and also foresees the places in hell of those who are not willing to be saved, and the places in heaven of those who are willing to be saved, it follows that for the evil, as has been said, the Lord provides their places by permitting and by withdrawing, and for the good by leading; and unless this were done unceasingly from every one's birth until the end of his life neither heaven nor hell would continue to exist, for without that foresight and providence together neither heaven nor hell would be anything but confusion. That the Lord from foresight has provided for every one his place.

This may be illustrated by this comparison. If an archer or a marksman should aim at a mark, and behind the mark a straight line were drawn for a mile, and if he should err only by a finger's breadth in his aim, his missile or ball keeping on to the end of the mile would depart very far from the line. So would it be if the Lord did not every moment, and even every least fraction of a moment, regard the eternal in His foreseeing and providing every one's place after death. But this the Lord does because
the entire future is present to Him and the entire present is to Him the eternal.
It is also said that the operation of the Divine providence will continue to eternity, since every angel is perfecting in wisdom to eternity, but each according to the degree of that affection for good and truth in which he was when he left the world. It is this degree that is being perfected to eternity. Anything beyond this degree is outside of the angel and not within him, and that which is outside of him cannot be perfected within him. This is meant by the
Good measure, pressed down and shaken together and running over, that shall be given into the bosom of those who forgive and give to others (Luke 6:37, 38),
that is, who are in good of charity.

(from Divine Providence 333-334)

June 16, 2022

Blessing or Curse Depends Upon Man's Freedom of Choice in Spiritual Things

Selection from True Christian Religion ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
Without Order, No creation Was Possible

The primary thing of order is for man to be an image of God, consequently, that he be continually perfecting in love and wisdom, and thus becoming that image more and more. To this end God is working continually in man; but this would be in vain, for it would be impossible, if man were destitute of freedom of choice in spiritual things, whereby he could turn to God and reciprocally conjoin himself with God. For there is an order from which and according to which the whole universe, with each and all things in it, was created; and because all creation was effected from that order and according to it God is called order itself.
God Himself, even, cannot act contrary to His own Divine order, since this would be to act contrary to His very Self; and therefore He leads every man according to that order which is Himself, guiding the wandering and the fallen into it, and the resisting toward it.
If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rose from the dead (Luke 16:31).

It is asked at the present day, why miracles do not take place as formerly; for it is believed that if they were to occur, there would come from everyone a hearty acknowledgment. But miracles are not now wrought as formerly because they compel [belief] and take away man's freedom of choice in spiritual things, and make man natural instead of spiritual.
Everyone in the Christian world, since the Lord's coming, has the ability to become spiritual, and he becomes spiritual solely from the Lord through the Word; but the capacity to become so would perish if man were led to believe through miracles, because, as just said, miracles compel and deprive man of freedom of choice in spiritual things; and everything that is compulsory in such matters betakes itself to the natural man, and closes the door, as it were, to the spiritual man, which is the truly internal man, depriving it of all power to see any truth in clear light, with the result that man then reasons about spiritual things from the natural man alone, which sees everything truly spiritual inversely.
But before the Lord's coming miracles were wrought because the men of the church were then natural men, to whom spiritual things, which belong to an internal church, could not be disclosed; for if these had been disclosed they would have been profaned. Therefore all their worship consisted in rituals which represented and signified the internal things of the church; and they could be led to observe these rituals only by means of miracles; and not even, indeed, by means of miracles, because those representatives had in them a spiritual internal, as is evident from the children of Israel in the desert, who, although they had seen so many miracles in Egypt, and afterward that greatest of miracles upon Mount Sinai, still, after Moses' absence for a month, danced around a golden calf, and shouted that it had led them out of Egypt. In the land of Canaan they acted in a like manner, although they witnessed the great miracles wrought by Elijah and Elisha, and finally the truly Divine miracles by the Lord.

Miracles are not wrought at the present day, especially for the reason that the church has deprived man of all freedom of choice. This it has done by decreeing that man is unable to contribute anything whatever toward the acquisition of faith or toward conversion, or in general toward salvation. The man who accepts this belief becomes more and more natural; and the natural man, as said above, looks at everything spiritual inversely, and consequently thinks in opposition to it. In this case the higher region of the man's mind, where freedom of choice in spiritual things has its primary seat, is thereby closed up, and the spiritual things which miracles seemingly confirm occupy the lower region of the mind, which is merely natural, and the falsities respecting faith, conversion, and salvation, thus remain above this region, and in consequence it comes to pass that satans have their abode above and angels below, like hawks above chickens. Then after a little while the satans break down their bars, and rush forth with fury upon the spiritual things which hold a place below them, not only denying these, but also blaspheming and profaning them; and the result is that the latter state of man becomes worse than the former.
The Divine omnipotence is not without order; God is Himself Order; and all things were created from order, in order, and for order, because they were created from God. There is an order into which man was created, namely, that blessing or curse depends for him upon his freedom of choice in spiritual things; for, as said above, it is impossible to create a man without freedom of choice, nor even a beast, a bird, or a fish. But beasts have only a natural freedom of choice, while man has not only natural freedom of choice but also spiritual freedom of choice.

(from True Christian Religion 500-502)

June 13, 2022

Those Who Trust in The Lord or Themselves

Selection from Arcana Coelestia ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another, It is manna: for they wist not what it was. And Moses said unto them, This is the bread which the Lord hath given you to eat.  This is the thing which the Lord hath commanded, Gather of it every man according to his eating, an omer for every man, according to the number of your persons; take ye every man for them which are in his tents.  And the children of Israel did so, and gathered, some more, some less.  And when they did mete it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; they gathered every man according to his eating. And Moses said, Let no man leave of it till the morning.     Exodus 16:15-19
Let no one make a residue of it till the morning. That this signifies that they should not be solicitous about acquiring it from themselves, is evident from the fact that the manna was to be given every morning, and that worms would be bred in that which was left over, by which is signified that the Lord daily provides necessaries, and that therefore they ought not to be solicitous about acquiring them from themselves. This also is meant by the "daily bread" in the Lord's Prayer, and likewise by the Lord's words in Matthew:
Be not solicitous for your soul, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on; why are ye solicitous about things to put on? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: therefore be ye not solicitous, saying, What shall we eat? and what shall we drink? or, wherewithal shall we be clothed? For after all these things do the nations seek; doth not your Heavenly Father know that ye have need of all these things? Seek ye first the kingdom of the heavens, and His righteousness; then shall all these things be added to you; therefore be ye not solicitous for the morrow, for the morrow will take care of the things of itself (6:25, 28, 31-34).
In like manner in Luke:
And when they bring you unto the synagogues, and unto magistrates, and powers, take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say: For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.
And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on. The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment. Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest? Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith? And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, Nither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you. Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom. (12:11, 12, 22-31)
... in the internal sense care for the morrow is treated of, and as this care is not only forbidden, but is also condemned (that it is forbidden is signified by that they were not to make a residue of the manna till the morning, and that it is condemned is signified by that the worm was bred in the residue, and it stank),
he who looks at the subject no deeper than from the sense of the letter may believe that all care for the morrow is to be cast aside, and thus that the necessaries of life are to be awaited daily from heaven;
but he who looks at the subject deeper than from the letter, as for instance he who looks at it from the internal sense, is able to know what is meant by "care for the morrow."
It does not mean the care of procuring for oneself food and raiment, and even resources for the time to come; for it is not contrary to order for anyone to be provident for himself and his own.
But those have care for the morrow who are not content with their lot; who do not trust in the Divine, but in themselves; and who have regard for only worldly and earthly things, and not for heavenly things. With such there universally reigns solicitude about things to come, and a desire to possess all things and to dominate over all, which is kindled and grows according to the additions thus made, and finally does so beyond all measure. They grieve if they do not obtain the objects of their desire, and feel anguish at the loss of them; and they have no consolation, because of the anger they feel against the Divine, which they reject together with everything of faith, and curse themselves. Such are they who have care for the morrow.
Very different is the case with those who trust in the Divine.
These, notwithstanding they have care for the morrow, still have it not, because they do not think of the morrow with solicitude, still less with anxiety. Unruffled is their spirit whether they obtain the objects of their desire, or not; and they do not grieve over the loss of them, being content with their lot. If they become rich, they do not set their hearts on riches; if they are raised to honors, they do not regard themselves as more worthy than others; if they become poor, they are not made sad; if their circumstances are mean, they are not dejected. They know that for those who trust in the Divine all things advance toward a happy state to eternity, and that whatever befalls them in time is still conducive thereto.
Be it known that the Divine Providence is universal, that is, in things the most minute; and that they who are in the stream of Providence are all the time carried along toward everything that is happy, whatever may be the appearance of the means; and that those are in the stream of Providence who put their trust in the Divine and attribute all things to Him;
and that those are not in the stream of Providence who trust in themselves alone and attribute all things to themselves, because they are in the opposite, for they take away providence from the Divine, and claim it for themselves.

Be it known also that insofar as anyone is in the stream of Providence, so far he is in a state of peace; also that insofar as anyone is in a state of peace from the good of faith, so far he is in the Divine Providence. These alone know and believe that the Divine Providence of the Lord is in everything both in general and in particular, nay, is in the most minute things of all ... and that the Divine Providence regards what is eternal.

But they who are in the opposite are scarcely willing to hear Providence mentioned, for they ascribe everything to their own sagacity; and what they do not ascribe to this they ascribe to fortune or chance; some to fate, which they do not educe from the Divine, but from nature. They call those simple who do not attribute all things to themselves or to nature. From all this again it can be seen what is the quality of those who have care for the morrow, and what the quality of those who have no care for the morrow.
(Arcana Coelestia 8478)

June 11, 2022

Fear of Loss of 'What is their Own'

Selection from Arcana Coelestia ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
All good and truth flow in from the Lord

"And the men were afraid," a drawing back because the truths that belonged to the natural were to be adjoined and subjected to the internal —they were to be reduced under absolute power until whatever is in either natural be as nothing.

There is no genuine truth but that which is from the Lord, who bestows it gratuitously — so truth itself is from no other source.

There is a disposition to procure good by means of truth [from another source] . . . if they were to be subjected as servants because some truths in the exterior natural had been bestowed gratuitously, they would procure good by means of truth [from some other source].

When they perceive that everything they think and will flows into them, thus that they have no power to think and to will from themselves, they resist as much as they can, believing that if this were so they would have no life of their own, and thereby that all delight would perish, for they vest this in what is their own. Besides, if they cannot do good or believe truth of themselves, they suppose they should let go their hands, doing and thinking nothing from themselves, and should wait for influx.

They are permitted to think so, even to the extent of almost coming to the conclusion that they do not desire to receive good and truth from this source (from the Lord), but [from some other] by which there would not be such a loss of what is their own; and sometimes it is given them to inquire where they may find it. Yet afterward when they find it nowhere, those who are being regenerated come back, and in freedom choose to be led by the Lord in their willing and thinking. They are then informed that they will receive an own that is heavenly, such as angels have, and with this own, also blessedness and happiness to eternity.

As regards the own that is heavenly, this comes forth from the new will that is given by the Lord, and differs from the man's own in the fact that they who have it no longer regard themselves in each and all things they do, and in each and all things they learn or teach; but they then have regard to the neighbor, the public, the church, the Lord's kingdom, and thereby to the Lord Himself. It is the ends of life that are changed. The ends that look to lower things, that is, to self and the world, are removed, and ends that look to higher things are substituted in their place. The ends of life are nothing else than the man's life itself, for they are his very will and loves, because what a man loves he wills and has for his end. He who is gifted with an own that is heavenly is also in quietude and in peace; for he trusts in the Lord, and believes that nothing of evil will reach him, and knows that concupiscences will not infest him. And besides, they who are in the heavenly own are in freedom itself; for to be led by the Lord is freedom, because they are led in good, by good, to good.

From this it is evident that they are in blessedness and happiness, for there is nothing that disturbs them, nothing of the love of self, consequently nothing of enmity, hatred, and revenge; nor is there anything of the love of the world, consequently nothing of fraud, of fear, of unrest.

(from Arcana Coelestia 5660)