Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 1906

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1906. 'After Abram had been dwelling ten years in the land of Canaan' means the remnants of good and of truth deriving from that good which the Lord acquired to Himself and by means of which this rational was conceived. This is clear from the meaning of 'ten' as remnants, dealt with already in 576. What remnants are has been stated and shown in 468, 530, 560, 561, 660, 661, 798, 1050; that is to say, they are all the states of affection for good and truth conferred by the Lord on a person from earliest childhood right through to life's end. These states are stored away within him for the use of his life after death, for in the next life all the states of his life return one after another and at that time they undergo modification through the states of good and truth which the Lord has conferred on him. The more remnants he acquires therefore during his lifetime, or the more good and truth he acquires, the happier and more beautiful the rest of his states seem to be when they actually return. The truth of this may become clear to anyone if he gives the matter careful consideration. At birth no one of himself possesses any good at all, but is wholly defiled with hereditary evil. Everything good flows in, such as his love for parents, nursemaids, and playmates, this influx being from innocence. These are the gifts which flow in from the Lord through the heaven of innocence and peace, which is the inmost heaven, and this is the manner in which they are imparted to him during early childhood.

[2] Later on, when he grows up, this good, innocent, and peaceful state of early childhood departs from him little by little; and insofar as he is introduced into the world, he enters into its pleasures and delights, and so into evils, and the heavenly things or the goods of early childhood start to be dispersed. Yet they still remain, it being by means of these that the states are moderated which a person takes to himself and acquires later on. Without them he cannot possibly be truly human, for states in which evil desires or any evils occur, if not moderated by means of states in which the affection for good is present, would be more dreadful than those of any animal. Those states of good are what are called remnants, which are conferred by the Lord and implanted in a person's natural disposition, this being done when the person is not aware of it.

[3] In later life he has further new states conferred on him; but these are not so much states of good as of truth, for as he grows up he has truths bestowed on him, and these in a similar way are stored away within his interior man. By means of these remnants, which are those of truth, and which have been born from the influx of spiritual things from the Lord, a person has the ability to think, and also to understand what the good and truth of civil or public life and moral or private life are, and also to receive spiritual truth, that is, the truth of faith. Yet he has no ability to do these things except by means of the remnants of good which he received in early childhood. Of the existence of remnants, and the fact that they are stored away in man in his interior rational, man is completely unaware. That unawareness is due to thinking that nothing flows in but that everything is innate within him, and thus present within him when he is an infant, though the reality is altogether different from that. Remnants are referred to in various places in the Word, and by them are meant those states by which a person becomes human, and this from the Lord alone.

[4] The remnants which resided with the Lord however were all the Divine states which He acquired to Himself and by means of which He united the Human Essence to the Divine Essence. These are in no way comparable with the remnants that reside with man, for the latter are not Divine but human. The remnants the Lord had are what is meant by the ten years Abram dwelt in the land of Canaan. When angels hear the Word they have no knowledge of what 'ten' is; but the moment ten is mentioned by man the idea of remnants comes to them, for 'ten' and 'tenths' in the Word mean remnants, as is clear from what has been stated and shown in 576, 1738. And when they perceive that 'Abram had been dwelling ten years in the land of Canaan' the idea of the Lord comes to them, and with it simultaneously countless things meant by the remnants residing with the Lord when He was in the world.

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