Sunday, April 17, 2011

The following excerpt is from the book,"Heaven and Hell", by Emanuel Swedenborg. Here he speaks about the importance of recognizing the divine and it's inflows:

"...[W]e can draw our conclusions about the quality of people whose minds' more inward reaches are closed off toward heaven, as in the case with everyone who has not accepted some inflow from heaven by recognizing something Divine and by a life of faith.

Everyone can judge for himself what he would be like if he were allowed to behave without the fear for the law or for his life--without outward bonds, which are fears of injury to his reputation or loss of prestige and profit and their pleasures.

In spite of all this, their madness is controlled by the Lord to keep it from hurtling beyond the bounds of what is useful; for some use comes even of every such person. Good spirits see in them what evil is and what it is like, and what a person is like if he is not led by the Lord. Another useful function is the gathering of similar people by them, and their separation from good people...bringing them into the evils of their own life and the false elements of evil, and so getting them ready for hell.

...Everything evil brings its own penalty with it. The two are bonded together. So the person who is involved in something evil is also involved in the penalty of the evil. Yet no one there suffers a penalty because of evil things he did in the world, but rather because of evil things he is doing currently.

Still, it comes down to the same thing whether you say he suffers penalties on account of the evil things he did in the world, or that he suffers penalties because of the evil things he is doing in the other life, because everyone returns after death to his own life, and therefore to similar evils. For the person is of the same quality as he was during his physical life".

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