(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 5639

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5639. And Joseph saw Benjamin with them. That this signifies the perception by the celestial of the spiritual of a spiritual intermediate with truths, is evident from the signification of "seeing," as being to understand and perceive (see n. 2150, 2807, 3764, 4567, 4723, 5400); and from the representation of Jacob's ten sons (who are meant by "with them," that is, with whom Joseph saw Benjamin), as being truths in the natural (n. 5403, 5419, 5427, 5458, 5512); and from the representation of Benjamin, as being the intermediate (see n. 5411, 5413, 5443). That this is here called a spiritual intermediate is because the truths represented by Jacob's ten sons were now to be conjoined with the truth from the Divine which is "Joseph," and this conjunction is not effected without an intermediate which is spiritual; and therefore when this intermediate was perceived, it immediately follows that "Joseph said to him that was over his house, Bring the men to the house, and slaying slay, and make ready; for the men shall eat with me at noon," by which is signified that they would be introduced and conjoined because with the intermediate.
[2] What the spiritual is relatively to the natural must be further told in a few words, because most of those who are in the Christian world are so ignorant of what the spiritual is that when they hear the term they hesitate, and say to themselves that no one knows what it is. In its essence with man the spiritual is the very affection of good and truth for the sake of good and truth, and not for the sake of self, and also the affection of what is just and fair for the sake of what is just and fair, and not for the sake of self. When a man feels in himself delight and pleasantness, and still more if he feels happiness and blessedness, from these affections, this is the spiritual in him, which comes not from the natural, but from the spiritual world or from heaven, that is, through heaven from the Lord. This then is the spiritual, which when it reigns in a man, affects and as it were tinges all that he thinks, wills, and does, and causes the thoughts and the acts of his will to partake of the spiritual, until at last these also become spiritual in him, as when he passes out of the natural into the spiritual world. In a word, the affection of charity and faith, that is, of good and truth, and the delight and pleasantness, and still more the happiness and blessedness thence derived, which are felt inwardly in man and make him a man truly Christian, are the spiritual.
[3] That most men in the Christian world are ignorant of what the spiritual is, is because they make faith and not charity the essential of the church. Consequently as those few who are concerned about faith think little if at all about charity or know what it is, therefore as there is no knowledge, there is no perception of the affection which is of charity; and he who is not in the affection of charity cannot possibly know what the spiritual is. Especially is this true at the present day, when scarcely anyone has any charity, because it is the last time of the church. But be it known that in a general sense the "spiritual" means the affection both of good and of truth, and therefore heaven is called the spiritual world, and the internal sense of the Word the spiritual sense; but specifically that which is of the affection of good is called the celestial, and that which is of the affection of truth is called the spiritual.


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