To turn now to the magnificent gardens: they are breathtaking. Huge parks containing every kind of tree come into view, so beautiful and so charming that they defy all power of imagination. They are presented to the inhabitants’ outward sight in such a living way that not only are they seen, they are also perceived in all their detail much more vividly than anything our physical eyesight discerns on earth.
To remove any doubts I might have on the subject, I was taken there (the place is in front, at an angle slightly above the right eye, where people who live the life of paradise are located), and I saw. Absolutely everything appears in its loveliest springtime and its loveliest bloom, with stunning magnificence and variety. Every single object is alive with representation, since nothing exists there that does not represent or symbolize something heavenly or spiritual. So the sights not only please the eyes but also cheer the mind.
Some souls newly arrived from the world once expressed doubt—because of principles they had adopted while still alive—that similar things could exist in the other world, where there is neither wood nor stone. They were taken up to that place and spoke to me from there. Stupefied, they said that it was indescribable, and that they could never find a mental picture to represent its indescribability. Exhilaration and happiness shone out from every particle, they said, with unending variety.
For the most part, souls being introduced to heaven are taken first of all to the paradisal gardens. Angels look at such things with very different eyes, however. It is not the actual gardens that delight an angel but the things they represent, and so the heavenly and spiritual realities behind them. The earliest church had its paradisal gardens from this source.
from Secrets of Heaven, Volume 2, Section 1622