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

ML 527

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527. IV. THAT EVIL IS IMPUTED TO EVERY ONE ACCORDING TO THE NATURE OF HIS WILL AND THE NATURE OF HIS UNDERSTANDING. It is known that there are two things which make man's life: will and understanding, all that is done by a man being done by his will and his understanding; also that without these agents man would have no action or speech other than that of a machine. It is evident from this that a man is such or such a man according to his will and understanding; also that a man's action, viewed in itself is such as is the affection of his will which produces it; and that his speech viewed in itself is such as is the thought of his understanding which produces it. Therefore, a number of men may act and speak in the same way and yet be acting and speaking differently, some from a depraved will and thought, and others from an upright will and thought. [2] From this it is evident that what is meant by the deeds or works according to which every one will be judged, is the will and understanding; and consequently, that by evil works are meant the works of an evil will, howsoever they may have appeared in externals, and by good works, the works of a good will even though in externals they may have seemed to be the same as the works of an evil man. Everything that is done by man's interior will is done from purpose; for that will proposes to itself that which it does in intention; and because the understanding confirms that intention, everything that is done by the understanding is done from confirmation. From this it is evident that evil or good is imputed to every one according to the nature of the will in his deeds, and according to the nature of his understanding concerning them. It is allowed to confirm this by the following:
[3] In the spiritual world I have met with many who in the natural world had lived in the same way as others, dressing finely, faring sumptuously, doing business for gain like other men, attending dramatic performances, jesting about amatory matters as if from lust, besides other like things; yet in some the angels condemned these things as evils of sin, and in some they did not account them as evils; and the latter they declared guiltless, and the former guilty. To the question why they did so when yet the men had done the same things, they answered that they view all men from their purpose, intention or end, and make distinction accordingly; thus that those whom the end excuses or condemns, they excuse or condemn, for all in heaven have good as an end, and all in hell have evil as an end.


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