(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 5427

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5427. And Joseph knew his brethren. That this signifies that these truths of the church appeared to the celestial of the spiritual from its light, is evident from the signification of "knowing," as being to perceive, to see, and thus to appear; from the representation of Joseph, as being the celestial of the spiritual (of which above); and from the signification of "his brethren," as being the general truths of the church (of which also above, n. 5409, 5419). And because by "Joseph's knowing his brethren" is signified that the general truths of the church appeared to the celestial of the spiritual, it follows that they appeared from the light in which the celestial of the spiritual was, thus from the celestial light of the spiritual. From this light, which is truth from the Divine (n. 5417), appear all and each of the truths that are below, or that are in the natural; but not the converse unless there is an intermediate, still less unless there is correspondence and through correspondence conjunction. This may be seen from the fact that the angels who are in the heavens, and thus in the light of heaven, can see everything that is taking place in the world of spirits, which world is next beneath the heavens, and also everything that is taking place in the lower earth, and even in hell; but not the converse.
[2] It is also the case that the angels of a higher heaven can see all that is going on below them in a lower heaven; but not the converse, unless there is an intermediate. There are also intermediate spirits through whom the communication is effected to and fro. When therefore they who are below and have no intermediate, and still more if they have no correspondence, look into the light of heaven, they see nothing at all, but everything there appears in darkness; when yet they who are there are in the clearest day. This may be illustrated by this single experience. There appeared to me a great city in which were thousands upon thousands of various objects, all pleasing and beautiful. I saw them because an intermediate was given me, but the spirits who were with me, being without an intermediate, could not see the least thing there; and it was said that they who are not in correspondence, even if they are in the city, do not perceive a single thing therein.
[3] Such also is the case with the interior man, or man's spirit, which is also called the soul, and which can see everything that exists and takes place in the exterior man; but not the converse, unless there is a correspondence and an intermediate. Consequently, to the exterior man not in correspondence the interior appears as nothing, so much so that when anything is said about the interior man, it appears to the exterior either so obscure that he is unwilling even to look in that direction, or else it appears as naught and not to be credited. But when there is correspondence, then the exterior man sees through an intermediate what is going on in the interior; for the light which the interior man has flows through the intermediate into the light which the exterior has, that is, heavenly light flows into natural light, and illumines it; from which illumining appears that which takes place in the interior man. Hence come intelligence and wisdom to the exterior or natural man. But if there is no intermediate, and especially if there is no correspondence, the interior man sees and perceives what is going on in the exterior, and in a measure leads it; but not the converse. If however there is contrariety, that is to say, if the exterior man entirely perverts or extinguishes what flows in through the interior, the interior man is then deprived of his light which is from heaven, and communication heavenward is closed to him; but communication from hell is opened toward the exterior man. On this subject more will be seen in what now follows.


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