We can gather how great divine love is and what its quality is by comparison with the sun of our world—that love is most intense, far more intense, if you will believe it. So the Lord as the sun does not flow directly into the heavens; rather, the intensity of his love is by degrees tempered in its course. The stages of this tempering look like sparkling halos around the sun. Further, angels are shielded by a suitably thin cloud so that they will not be hurt by the inflow. As a result, the heavens are distanced according to their receptiveness. The higher heavens, being in the good of love, are closest to the Lord as the sun. The lower heavens, though, being in the good of faith, are farther from him. People who are engaged in nothing good whatever, like the people in hell, are farthest away, their removal being in proportion to their opposition to what is good.
However, when the Lord appears in heaven (which happens quite often) he does not appear clothed with the sun but in an angelic form, distinguishable from the angels by the divine quality that shines from his face. He is not actually there in person—since the Lord “in person” is always clothed with the sun—but is present in appearance. It is commonplace in heaven for things to be seen as though they were present in the place where their appearance is focused or delineated, even though this is very far from the place where they themselves actually are. This presence is called “a presence of inner sight,” and will be discussed further below.
Then too I have seen the Lord outside the sun in an angelic form overhead, a little below the sun, and also nearby in a similar form—once even among some angels, looking like a fiery ray of light
from Heaven and Hell, Sections 120, 121