(AC) - A Disclosure of the Hidden Treasures of Heaven Contained in the Holy Scripture or Word of the Lord, Together with Amazing Things Seen in the World of Spirits and in the Heaven of Angels

AC 5127

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5127. After the former manner. That this signifies in accordance with the law of order is evident from the signification of the "former manner," as being the law of order; for it is a law of order that exterior things should be subject to interior things, or what is the same, lower things to higher ones, and should serve them as servants; for exterior or lower things are nothing but servants, while interior or higher things are relatively lords. That such is the signification of the words "after the former manner" is because the butler as a servant had previously served Pharaoh as his lord, in accordance with the law of subordination; thus the sensuous represented by the butler had served the interior natural represented by Pharaoh, in accordance with the law of order.
[2] That it is the law of order that lower or exterior things should serve higher or interior things, is wholly unknown to the sensuous man; for one who is merely sensuous does not know what interior is, thus neither what is relatively exterior. He knows that he thinks and speaks, and that he wills and acts; and from this he supposes that to think and to will are interior, and that to speak and to act are exterior; but he does not know that to think from the senses only, and to act from the appetites, is of the external man, thus that his thinking and willing are solely of the exterior natural, and that this is still more the case when he thinks falsities and wills evils; and because in such persons the communication with interior things is closed, he therefore does not know what interior thought and will are. If he is told that interior thought is to think from truth, and that interior will is to act from good, he does not at all apprehend it; still less that the interior man is distinct from the exterior, and so distinct that the interior man can see as from a higher position what is going on in the exterior man, and that the interior man has the capacity and ability of chastening the exterior, and of not willing and thinking what the exterior man sees from phantasy, and desires from cupidity.
[3] These things he does not see so long as his external man has dominion and rules; but when he is out of this state, as when he is in some depression arising from misfortunes or illness, he can see and apprehend these things, because then the dominion of the external man ceases. For the faculty or ability of understanding is always preserved to man by the Lord, but is very obscure with those who are in falsities and evils, and is always clearer in proportion as falsities and evils are lulled to sleep. The Lord's Divine flows in continually with man and enlightens him, but where there are falsities and evils (that is, where there are things contrary to truths and goods), the Divine light is either reflected or suffocated or perverted, and only so much of it is received, as it were through chinks, as to give him the faculty of thinking and speaking from sensuous things, and also of thinking and speaking of spiritual things from forms of speech impressed on the natural or bodily memory.


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