October 28, 2015

Preservation Depends on the State of the Ultimates

From Arcana Coelestia ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
Jehovah said unto the prophet, Buy thee a linen girdle, and put it upon thy loins; but thou shalt not draw it through water. So I bought a girdle, and put it upon my loins. Then the word of Jehovah was made unto me, saying, Take the girdle, and go to Euphrates, and hide it in a hole of the rock. At the end of many days I went to Euphrates, and took again the girdle, and behold it was corrupt, it was profitable for nothing. Then said Jehovah, This evil people, who refuse to hear My words, and are gone after other gods, shall be even as this girdle, which is profitable for nothing (Jer. 13:1-10).
In the spiritual sense by "the linen girdle" is here meant the good of the church, which encloses and holds together in connection the truths in it. Because the good of the church was at that time non-existent, and the truths were consequently dispersed, it is said that it should "not be drawn through water;" for "water" denotes the truth which purifies and thus restores. "The hole of the rock in which the girdle was hid" denotes truth falsified; "the Euphrates" denotes the extension and boundary of the celestial things of good in their ultimate.

He who does not know the nature of the Word, may suppose that this is only a comparison of the people and their corruption with the girdle and its corruption; but in the Word all comparisons and metaphorical sayings are real correspondences. Unless everything in this passage had a correspondence, it would never have been commanded that the girdle should not be drawn through water, that it should be put upon the loins, and that the prophet should go to the Euphrates, and should hide it there in a hole of the rock. It is said that the girdle should be "put upon the loins," because from correspondence "the loins" signify the good of celestial love; thus the placing of the girdle upon the loins denotes conjunction with the Lord through the good of love by the mediation of the Word.
(from Arcana Coelestia 9828)

The preservation of good and truth forever with all exertion and power - thus the preservation of the heavens

... all preservation depends on the state of the ultimates, for all the interior things cease there, and form a plane there in which they may subsist. Ultimates are like the soles and the feet, on which the whole body stands, and are also like the hands and the arms, by means of which the body exerts its powers, and into which the body transfers its forces. It is also from this that the hands and the arms, as well as the soles and the feet, correspond to the ultimates of heaven.
That power and strength reside in ultimates was represented in the Ancient Church by the hair with the Nazirites, in which resided their strength, as is plain from Samson (Judges 14-16), and also their sanctity.
That power resides in ultimates, and also the conservation of the interiors in their state, can be understood by those who know how the case is in nature with things successive and thence simultaneous; namely, that successive things at last form in ultimates what is simultaneous, in which these successive things are in a like order side by side. Wherefore simultaneous things, which are ultimate, serve successive things, which are prior, as corresponding supports on which they may lean, and thus by means of which they may be preserved.
(from Arcana Coelestia 9836)