(ML) - Wisdom's Delight in Marriage Love: Followed by Insanity’s Pleasure in Promiscuous Love

ML 270

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270. The third Memorable Relation:
One morning after sleep, my thought was deeply engaged on certain arcana of conjugial love, and finally, on the following: In what region of the human mind does love truly conjugial reside, and hence in what, conjugial cold? I knew that there are three regions of the human mind, one above the other, and that natural love dwells in the lowest region, spiritual love in the higher, and celestial love in the highest; also that in each region there is a marriage of good and truth; and because good pertains to love and truth to wisdom, that in each region there is a marriage of love and wisdom, and that this marriage is the same as the marriage of the will and understanding, the will being the receptacle of love and the understanding the receptacle of wisdom.
[2] While in deep thought concerning this, lo, I saw two swans flying towards the north, and presently two birds of paradise flying towards the south, and also two turtle-doves flying in the east. As I followed their flight with my sight, I saw that the two swans bent their northerly course to the east, as likewise did the two birds of paradise on their southerly course; and that, joining the two turtle-doves in the east, they flew with them to a lofty palace there, around which were olive trees, palms and beeches. The palace had three tiers of windows, one above the other; and, directing my attention to them, I saw the swans fly into the palace through open windows in the lowest tier, the birds of paradise through open windows in the middle tier, and the turtle-doves through open windows in the highest tier.
[3] As I was looking at this, an angel stood by my side and said, "Do you understand these sights?" I replied, "Partly." He then said: "That palace represents the abodes of conjugial love as they are in human minds. Its highest part into which the doves betook themselves represents the highest region of the mind where conjugial love with its wisdom dwells in the love of good; its middle into which the birds of paradise betook themselves represents the middle region where conjugial love with its intelligence dwells in the love of truth; and its lowest part into which the swans betook themselves represents the lowest region of the mind where conjugial love with its knowledge dwells in the love of what is just and right. [4] Moreover, the three pairs of birds signify these same things--the pair of turtle-doves, the conjugial love of the highest region, the pair of birds of paradise the conjugial love of the middle region, and the pair of swans the conjugial love of the lowest region. The like are signified by the three kinds of trees around the palace--the olive, the palm, and the beech. In heaven, we call the highest region of the mind celestial, the middle spiritual, and the lowest natural; and we perceive them as abiding places in a house, one above the other, and the ascent from one to the other by degrees, as being made by stairs. In each story are two rooms, as it were, one for love the other for wisdom. In front is a bedchamber, as it were, where love with its wisdom, or good with its truth, or, what is the same thing, the will with its understanding, consociate in bed. In that palace stand forth as in effigy all the arcana of conjugial love."
[5] On hearing this, being kindled with a desire to see the palace, I asked whether, being a representative palace, it was granted any one to enter in and view it. He answered: "To none save those who are in the third heaven, because to them every representative of love and wisdom becomes real. It is from them that I heard what I have reported to you, and also this, that in the highest region love truly conjugial dwells, in the chamber or room of the will, in the midst of mutual love, and in the chamber or room of the understanding, in the midst of the perceptions of wisdom; and that, in the bedchamber which is at the front and in the east, they are consociated in bed."
To my question, "Why are there two chambers?" he said, "The husband is in the chamber of the understanding and the wife in the chamber of the will."
[6] I then asked, "Since conjugial love dwells there, where then does conjugial cold dwell?" He answered: "This also dwells in the highest region, but only in the chamber of the understanding, the chamber of the will there being closed; for the understanding with its truths can ascend by a spiral stairway into its chamber in the highest region whenever it wills; but if the will with the good of its love does not at the same time ascend into the neighboring chamber, the latter is shut and in the other chamber it becomes cold; and this cold is conjugial cold. When there is such cold towards the wife, then from this highest region the understanding looks down to the lowest, and if fear does not restrain it, it also descends thither that it may there grow warm from an illicit fire."
After saying this, he wished to recount still further particulars concerning conjugial love on the basis of its effigies in that palace, but he said: "Enough for the present. Inquire first whether these things are above the common understanding. If they are, why more? but if not, more will be disclosed."


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