(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 5146

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5146. And in the uppermost basket. That this signifies the inmost of the will part, is evident from the signification of a "basket" as being the will part (of which above, n. 5144); and from the signification of "the uppermost," as being the inmost (n. 2148, 3084, 4599). The reason why the "uppermost" denotes the inmost is that with man who is in space, interior things appear as higher things, and exterior things as lower ones; but when the idea of space is put off, as is the case in heaven and also in the interior thought of man, there is then put off the idea of what is high and what is low; for height and depth come from the idea of space. Nay, in the interior heaven there is no idea of things interior and exterior, because something of space adheres to this idea also; but there is the idea of more perfect or more imperfect state; for interior things are in a more perfect state than exterior ones, because interior things are nearer the Divine, and exterior things are more remote from it. This is the reason why what is uppermost signifies what is inmost.
[2] Nevertheless no one can apprehend what the interior is relatively to the exterior unless he knows how the case stands with degrees (in regard to which see above, n. 3691, 4154, 5114, 5145). Man has no other conception of what is interior and hence more perfect than as of what is purer in continual diminution; but the purer and the grosser are possible in one and the same degree, both according to the expansion and the contraction, and according to the determinations, and also according to the insertions of things homogeneous or heterogeneous. As such an idea prevails about the interior of man, it is quite impossible to avoid the notion that the exteriors are continuously coherent with the interiors, and thus act with them absolutely as a one. But if a genuine idea about degrees is formed, it is then possible to see how the interiors and the exteriors are distinct from one another, and that they are so distinct that the interiors can come into existence and subsist without the exteriors, but by no means the exteriors without the interiors. It is also then possible to see how the case stands with the correspondence of the interiors in the exteriors, and also how the exteriors can represent the interiors. This is the reason why the learned can treat hypothetically only of the interaction between the soul and the body; nay, this is also the reason why many of them believe life to be in the body, so that when the body dies, they believe that they will die as to the interiors also, on account of the coherence of these with the body, when yet it is only the exterior degree that dies, the interior then surviving and living.


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