Still another group of spirits had difficulty believing that the Lord’s Word conceals these kinds of depths within, at its heart. (In the other life spirits keep the skepticism they had when they lived in their bodies; it is not broken down except through means provided by the Lord and through personal experience.) Accordingly, the inner eye of their mind was opened while I was reading some of David’s psalms, although these spirits were not lifted up to join angelic spirits. They perceived the inner dimensions of the Word in the psalms I was reading and, stunned by them, confessed that they had never believed in such things.
Many other spirits then listened to the same part of the Word, but they all perceived it in different ways. It filled the thoughts of some with many sweet, pleasant images and so with a kind of life, according to the capacity of each. It also had the strength to pierce through to their deepest core. With some its power was so great that they seemed to themselves to be lifted up toward the more inward parts of heaven. The more they were affected by its truth—and by the goodness interwoven with the truth—the closer they came to the Lord.
At the same time the Word was read to some who grasped none of its inner meaning but only its outer or literal meaning. In their eyes, the letter was lifeless.
This showed what the Word is like when the Lord brings it to life and when he does not. When he does, it has the power to penetrate to our inmost core; when he does not, it is mere words, with hardly any life in it.
The Lord in his divine mercy has also granted me the opportunity to see his Word in all the beauty of its inner sense. This he has done many, many times. I am not talking about the way it appears when the inner meaning of each individual word is explained but about the way it appears when the whole and all the parts form a single chain of thought. This can be described as seeing heaven’s paradise from earth’s.
Spirits who loved and enjoyed the Lord’s Word during their physical life feel a certain pleasant, heavenly warmth in the next life, and this too I was allowed to experience.
The spirits who had enjoyed the Word somewhat shared their warmth with me, and it resembled the balmy temperatures of spring. The warmth started in the area of my lips and spread through my cheeks and from there to my ears. It also reached up to my eyes and down toward the middle of my chest.
Other spirits felt even more pleasure in the Lord’s Word and in the deeper lessons that the Lord himself had taught. The warmth they shared with me was deeper and started in my chest, spreading up toward my chin and down toward my lower abdomen.
The warmth of those who felt still more pleasure was still more deeply gratifying and more springlike. It reached from my lower abdomen up to my chest and from there through my left arm to my hand.
I was taught by angels that this was the case, and they said that when such spirits come close, they trigger these waves of heat. The spirits themselves do not feel it, however, because they are inside it. The same is common with children, adolescents, and young adults; mostly they are not aware of the fire they have—although they have more than mature adults and old people do—because they are inside it.
In addition, I sensed the warmth of those who did enjoy the Word but did not concern themselves with understanding it. The heat was restricted to my right arm.
As far as heat goes, evil spirits can also conjure up a type that mimics the pleasurable kind, and they can share it with others, but it is strictly superficial; it has no inner source. This is the kind of heat that turns into something putrid and dunglike—the heat that adulterers and hedonists have.
from Secrets of Heaven, Volume 2, Sections 1771-1773