Divine Love and Wisdom/n. 124

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THE QUARTERS IN THE SPIRITUAL WORLD ARE NOT FROM THE LORD AS A SUN, BUT FROM THE ANGELS ACCORDING TO RECEPTION.

124. It has been stated that the angels dwell separate from each other; some in the eastern quarter, some in the western, some in the southern, and some in the northern; and that those who dwell in the eastern quarter are in a higher degree of love; those in the western, in a lower degree of love; those in the southern, in the light of wisdom; and those in the northern, in the shade of wisdom. This diversity of dwelling-places appears as though it were from the Lord as a sun, when, in fact it is from the angels. The Lord is not in a greater and lesser degree of love and wisdom, that is, as a sun He is not in a greater or lesser degree of heat and light with one than with another, for He is everywhere the same. But He is not received by one in the same degree as by another; and this makes them appear to themselves to be more or less distant from one another, and also variously as regards the quarters. From this it follows that quarters in the spiritual world are nothing else than various receptions of love and wisdom, and thence of heat and light from the Lord as a sun. That this is so is plain from what was shown above (n. 108-112), that in the spiritual world distances are appearances.

125. As the quarters are various receptions of love and wisdom by angels, the variety from which that appearance springs shall now be explained. The Lord is in the angel, and the angel in the Lord (as was shown in a preceding article). But on account of the appearance that the Lord as a sun is outside of the angel, there is also the appearance that the Lord sees him from the sun, and that he sees the Lord in the sun. This is almost like the appearance of an image in a mirror. Speaking, therefore, according to that appearance, it may be said that the Lord sees and looks at each one face to face, but that angels, on their part, do not thus behold the Lord. Those who are in love to the Lord from the Lord see Him directly in front; these, therefore, are in the east and the west; but those who are more in wisdom see the Lord obliquely to the right, and those who are less in wisdom obliquely to the left; therefore the former are in the south, and the latter in the north. The view of these is oblique because love and wisdom (as has been said before), although they proceed from the Lord as one, are not received as one by angels; and the wisdom which is in excess of the love, while it appears as wisdom, is not wisdom, because in the overplus of wisdom there is no life from love. From all this it is evident whence comes the diversity of reception according to which angels appear to dwell according to quarters in the spiritual world.

126. That this variety of reception of love and wisdom is what gives rise to the quarters in the spiritual world can be seen from the fact that an angel changes his quarter according to the increase or decrease of love with him; from which it is evident that the quarter is not from the Lord as a sun, but from the angel according to reception. It is the same with man as regards his spirit. In respect to his spirit, he is in some quarter of the spiritual world, whatever quarter of the natural world he may be in, for quarters in the spiritual world, as has been said above, have nothing in common with quarters in the natural world. Man is in the latter as regards his body, but in the former as regards his spirit.

127. In order that love and wisdom may make one in an angel or in a man, there are pairs in all the things of his body. The eyes, ears, and nostrils are pairs; the hands, loins, and feet are pairs; the brain is divided into two hemispheres, the heart into two chambers, the lungs into two lobes, and in like manner the other parts. Thus in angel and man there is right and left; and all their right parts have relation to the love from which wisdom comes; and all the left parts, to the wisdom which is from love; or, what is the same, all the right parts have relation to the good from which truth comes; and all the left parts, to the truth that is from good. Angel and man have these pairs in order that love and wisdom, or good and truth, may act as one, and as one, may have regard to the Lord. But of this more in what follows.

128. From all this it can be seen in what fallacy and consequent falsity those are, who suppose that the Lord bestows heaven arbitrarily, or arbitrarily grants one to become wise and loving more than another, when, in truth, the Lord is just as desirous that one may become wise and be saved as another. For He provides means for all; and every one becomes wise and is saved in the measure in which he accepts these means, and lives in accordance with them. For the Lord is the same with one as with another; but the recipients, who are angels and men, are unlike by reason of unlike reception and life. That this is so can be seen from what has just been said of spiritual quarters, and of the dwelling-places of the angels in accordance with them; namely, that this diversity is not from the Lord but from the recipients.