March 4, 2016

The Very Being of a Thing

From Arcana Coelestia ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
The very being of a thing is good,
and all good is of love, which is spiritual conjunction or unition.

Hence in the supreme sense the Lord is called being or Jehovah, because from Him is all the good which is of love or of spiritual conjunction. As heaven makes a one through love from Him and the reciprocal love to Him through reception, and through mutual love, it is therefore called a marriage, through which it is. It would be similar with the church, if love and charity were the being of it.

Therefore where there is no conjunction or union, there is no being; for unless there is something to bring to a one or to unite, there must be dissolution and extinction.
Thus in a civil society, where everyone is for himself and no one for another except for the sake of himself, unless there were laws to unite, and fears of the loss of gain, honor, fame, and life, the society would be utterly dissipated; so that the being of such a society is also conjunction or unition, but only in externals, while in respect to internals there is no being in it. For this reason also such persons in the other life are kept in hell, and are in like manner held together there by external bonds, especially by fears; but whenever these bonds are relaxed, one rushes to compass the destruction of another, and desires nothing more than to put him out of existence. It is otherwise in heaven, where there is internal conjunction through love to the Lord and the derivative mutual love. When external bonds are relaxed there, they are more closely conjoined together; and because they are thus brought nearer to the Divine being which is from the Lord, they are more interiorly in affection and thence in freedom, consequently in blessedness, happiness, and joy.
(Arcana Coelestia 5002)