Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 5660

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5660. 'And we are causing other silver to come down in our hand to buy food' means that the mind is set on acquiring good through truth from some other source. This is clear from the meaning of 'silver' as truth, dealt with just above in 5657, and as 'silver' means truth, some other truth and therefore truth from some other source is meant by 'other silver' (for no other truth that is genuine truth exists apart from that received from the Lord, who gives it freely, so that there is no other source than He from which real truth is derived); and from the meaning of 'causing to come down' as a mind set on acquiring - on acquiring the good of truth, which is meant by the grain they bought. The story told in the sense of the letter implies that the other silver came to Joseph, for the purchase of food from him and so from no other source. But the internal sense is not subject to any limitation set by the story told in the sense of the letter indeed it is not concerned with that sense, only with the real matter under discussion here, which is this: If they were to make themselves subservient like slaves owing to the fact that some truths were freely given within the exterior natural, they would from some other source acquire good through truth. This idea also forms the train of thought in the internal sense, for immediately after this the words 'we do not know who put the silver in our pouches' are used, meaning their lack of belief because they did not know where truth present in the exterior natural came from.

[2] Something like this happens in the next life in the case of spirits who are being introduced by means of truths into good, especially into this - that everything good and true flows in from the Lord. When they learn that everything they think or will flows into them, so that they themselves cannot be the source of their thinking and willing, they fight all they can against the idea. For they believe that, if this idea is true, they cannot have any life within themselves that is entirely their own and that all delight is therefore destroyed, for they make the existence of separate selfhood vital to delight. Furthermore those spirits think that if they do not have any power entirely their own to do what is good and to believe what is true, they must let their hands hang down, not do or think anything on their own initiative, and wait for influx. They are allowed to go on thinking in this kind of way until they reach the point when they almost decide that they do not want to receive what is good and true from such influx but from some other source which does not involve their being deprived in this manner of their selfhood. Sometimes they are even allowed to make enquiries about where they may find that kind of goodness and truth. But when after this they do not find such goodness and truth anywhere, those who are being regenerated come back and freely choose to let the Lord lead their will and thought. They are also told at the same time that they are going to receive a heavenly selfhood such as the angels possess, and along with this the gift of everlasting bliss and happiness.

[3] As regards this heavenly selfhood, it is a product of the new will conferred by the Lord. It is different from the selfhood properly man's own, in that those who have received that heavenly selfhood no longer see only themselves in every single thing they do or in every single thing they learn about and convey to others. Instead they see their neighbour, the general public, the Church, the Lord's kingdom, and so the Lord Himself. The ends they have in life are what undergo change; for ends which have lower things - namely self and the world - in view are removed and higher ones introduced to replace them. Ends in life are nothing else than the actual life in a person, for a person's ends in view are the things that his will desires. They are also the actual loves present in him, for what a person loves is what his will desires and what constitute his end in view. The person who is given a heavenly selfhood enjoys too a state of serenity and peace, for he trusts in the Lord and believes that no evil at all can come to touch him, knowing too that no strong evil desires can molest him. More than that, those who have received a heavenly selfhood enjoy true freedom; for being led by the Lord constitutes freedom since one is then led within the sphere of good, from good, and to good. From this it becomes clear that they enjoy bliss and happiness, for nothing exists to disturb them - no self-love at all, consequently no enmity, hatred, or vengeance at all; nor any love of the world at all, consequently no deceitfulness, fear, or unease at all.

This page is part of the Writings of Emanuel Swedenborg

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