The State of Innocence of Angels in Heaven

NOT many people in our world know what innocence is or what its quality is, and people involved in evil do not know at all. It is, of course, visible to our eyes—something about the face and the voice and the gestures, especially of infants—but still we do not know what it is, much less that it is where heaven lies concealed within us. To make it known, I should like to proceed in order and talk first about the innocence of infancy, and then about the innocence of wisdom, and finally about the state of heaven in respect to innocence.

The innocence of infancy, or of little ones, is not real innocence, since it is solely a matter of outward form and not internal. Still, we can learn from it what innocence is like, since it does radiate from their faces and from some of their gestures and from their first efforts at speech and affects [the people around them. The reason it is not real innocence is] that they do not have any internal thought—they do not yet know what good and evil are, or what true and false are, and this knowledge is the basis of our thinking.

As a result, they do not have any foresight of their own, no premeditation, and therefore no intent of evil. They have no self-image acquired through love for themselves and the world. They do not claim credit for anything, but attribute everything they receive to their parents. They are content with the few little things given them as gifts and enjoy them. They are not anxious about food and clothing or about the future. They do not focus on the world and covet much from it. They love their parents, their nurse, and their little friends and play innocently with them. They are willing to be led, they listen and obey; and since they are in this state, they accept everything as a matter of life. So they have suitable habits, language, and the beginnings of memory and thought without knowing where these gifts come from; and their state of innocence serves as a means of accepting and absorbing them. However, since this innocence is strictly a matter of the body and not of the mind,a as already noted, it is external. Their mind is not yet formed, since the mind is our discernment and volition and the thought and affection that come from them.

I have been told from heaven that infants are especially in the Lord’s care, and that there is an inflow from the central heaven, where the state is one of innocence, that passes through infants’ deeper natures, affecting those natures in its passage only through innocence. This is the source of the innocence they present to our view in their faces and in some of their gestures. It is what deeply affects their parents and creates the love called storge.

from Heaven and Hell, Sections 276, 277

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Written Materials in Heaven (Continued)

It is worth knowing that in the heavens, writing flows spontaneously from thoughts. It is done with such ease that it is as though the thought projected itself. The hand does not pause over the choice of some particular word, because the words—both the spoken and the written ones—are responsive to their individual thoughts, and anything that is so responsive is natural and spontaneous. There are also things written in the heavens without the use of hands, simply in response to thoughts; but these do not last.

I have also seen written materials in heaven comprising nothing but numbers arranged in a pattern and series, just like the writing of letters and words; and I have been told that these writings come from the inmost heaven, whose heavenly writing (described above in Sections 260–261) comes out as numbers for angels in the lower heavens when thought from the higher heaven flows down. I have also been told that this numerical writing enfolds mysteries, some of which cannot be grasped by thought or expressed in words. All numbers do in fact correspond and have meaning depending on their correspondence, just as words do, but with the difference that numbers represent general entities and words specific ones. Since one general entity involves countless specific ones, numeric writing enfolds more mysteries than alphabetic writing does.

I could see from this that numbers in the Word mean things just the way words do. What the simple numbers mean, like 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. 10, and 12, and what the composite ones mean, like 20, 30, 50, 70, 100, 144, 1000, 10,000, and 12,000 and others, may be seen in Secrets of Heaven, where such matters are dealt with.164 In this kind of writing in heaven the number on which the following numbers depend in sequence is always put first, as though it set their theme; for this number is a kind of title of the matter under consideration, and the numbers that follow serve to delimit the matter more specifically.

If people have no concept of heaven and do not want any concept of it other than one of some insubstantial atmosphere in which angels fly around like intellectual minds without the senses of hearing and sight, they cannot believe that angels have language and writing. They locate the entire presence of everything in matter. Yet the things that one finds in heaven occur with just as much reality as those in our world, and the angels who are there have everything they need for life, and everything they need for wisdom.

from Heaven and Hell, Sections 262-264

Notes:

Sections 260-261: Published 6/15/2018

Written Materials in Heaven (Continued)

Another time I was sent a small page from heaven with only a few words written on it in Hebrew letters. I was told that each letter enfolded treasures of wisdom, and that these were contained in the bends and curves of the letters and therefore in the sounds as well. I could see from this the meaning of the Lord’s words, “I tell you in truth, until heaven and earth pass away, not one jot or one tittle shall pass away from the Law” (Matthew 5:18) It is acknowledged in the church that the Word is divine right down to the smallest point, but where in each point the Divine lies hidden—that is not known as yet, so it needs to be explained. In the inmost heaven, the writing consists of various curving and bending forms, and these curves and bends are in keeping with the form of heaven. Through them, angels express the treasures of their wisdom, including many things that they cannot say in words. Believe it or not, the angels know this writing without practice or teachers. They are inwardly gifted with it as they are with the language itself (Section 236), so this writing is heavenly writing. The reason they are inwardly gifted with it is that all the outreach of angels’ thoughts and affections and therefore all communication of their intelligence and wisdom takes place in keeping with heaven’s form (Section 201). This is why their writing flows into that same form.

I have been told that before letters were invented, the earliest humans on our planet had this kind of writing, and that it was transferred into the Hebrew letters, which in early times were all curved, with none marked off by straight lines the way they are now. This is why there are divine things and treasures of heaven in the Word even in its jots and points and little horns.

This writing, which uses symbols of the heavenly form, is in use in the inmost heaven, whose inhabitants enjoy greater wisdom than others. It expresses the affections from which their thoughts flow and which follow in sequence according to the substance of the matter under consideration. This is why these writings enfold treasures that cannot be completely drawn out by thought. I have also been allowed to see these writings.

In the lower heavens, though, there are no written materials of this sort. The written materials there are much like those in our world, with similar letters. However, they are still not intelligible to people on earth because they are written in an angelic language, and angelic language by nature has nothing in common with our languages (Section 237). They express affections through the vowels; with the consonants they express the particular concepts that derive from the affections, and with the words they express the meaning of the matter (Sections 236, 241).

Further, this writing enfolds in a few words more than we can describe in several pages. I have seen these written materials as well. This means that they have a written Word in the lower heavens, and one expressed through heavenly forms in the inmost heaven.

from Heaven and Hell, Sections 260, 261

Notes:

Section 236: Published 5/3/2018

Section 237: Published 5/4/2018

Section 241: Published 5/5/2018

Written Materials in Heaven

SINCE angels do have language and their language is one of words, they also have written materials; and through those written materials just as through their conversation, they express what their minds are sensing. I have sometimes been sent pages covered with writing, just like pages handwritten or printed and published in our world. I could even read them in much the same way, but I was not allowed to get more out of them than a bit of meaning here and there. This was because it is not in keeping with the divine design to be taught by written materials from heaven, but [only] by the Word, since this is the sole means of communication and union between heaven and earth, and therefore between the Lord and humanity.

We gather from Ezekiel that pages written in heaven appeared to the prophets as well:

When I looked, behold, a hand was stretched out to me by the spirit, and in it the scroll of a book that he unrolled in my sight. It was written on the front and on the back. (Ezekiel 2:9–10)

And in John,

I saw in the right hand of the one who was sitting on the throne a book written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals. (Revelation 5:1)

The occurrence of written materials in the heavens is provided by the Lord for the sake of the Word, for in its essence the Word is the divine truth from which both angels and people on earth get all their wisdom. It has in fact been spoken by the Lord, and what is spoken by the Lord passes through all the heavens in sequence and comes to rest with us. In this way it is adapted both to the wisdom that angels enjoy and to the intelligence that we do. As a result, angels have a Word that they read just as much as we do ours. They draw their doctrinal principles from it, and their sermons come from it (Section 221). It is the same Word; but its natural meaning, which to us is its literal meaning, does not exist in heaven. There is a spiritual meaning there instead, which is its inner meaning. The nature of this meaning may be seen in the booklet The White Horse Described in the Book of Revelation.

from Heaven and Hell, Section 258, 259

Notes:

Section 221: Published 12/16/2016

The sun of the spiritual world is seen at a middle elevation, as far from angels as our physical world’s sun is from us

The following are the primary reasons why the sun of the spiritual world is seen at a middle elevation. First, this means that the warmth and light that emanate from that sun are at their median level—they are of equal proportions, therefore, and appropriately moderate. That is, if the sun appeared above that middle elevation, angels would perceive more warmth than light, while if it appeared lower, they would perceive more light than warmth, as happens on earth when the sun is above or below the middle of the sky. When it is above, the warmth increases more than the light; and when it is below, the light increases more than the warmth. The light actually stays the same in summer and winter, but the warmth increases or decreases depending on the degree of the sun’s height.

A second reason that the spiritual world’s sun appears at a middle height above the angelic heaven is that this results in a constant springtime for all the angelic heavens. Consequently, angels are in a state of peace, for this state corresponds to springtime on earth. A third reason is that it enables angels to turn their faces toward the Lord constantly and to see him with their eyes. For angels, the east—and therefore the Lord—is in front of them no matter which way they turn their bodies, which is a unique feature of their world. This would not happen if the sun of their world were above or below middle height, and it would be absolutely impossible if it were directly overhead.

If the spiritual world’s sun did not seem to be as far from angels as the physical world’s sun is from us, the whole angelic heaven, the hell underneath it, and our globe of lands and seas below them could not be under the Lord’s watchful guidance, omnipresence, omniscience, omnipotence, and providence. In the same way, if our world’s sun were not at the distance from the earth where we see it to be, it could not be present and effective with its warmth and light in all our lands, so it could not provide its subsidiary resources to the spiritual world’s sun.

It is of critical importance to realize that there are two suns, a spiritual one and a physical one, the spiritual sun for people who are in the spiritual world and the physical sun for people who are in the physical world. Unless this is recognized, there can be no real comprehension of creation or of humanity, subjects we are about to deal with. True, some effects can be seen, but unless the causes behind the effects are seen at the same time, it is like looking at the effects in the night.

from Divine Love and Wisdom, Sections 105-107

The spiritual warmth and light that result from the emanation from the Lord as the sun form a single whole just as his divine love and wisdom do.

Part 1 (Sections 1-82) explains how divine love and wisdom form a single whole in the Lord. Warmth and light form a similar whole because they are emanations, and emanations constitute a whole by reason of their correspondence. The warmth answers to love, and the light to wisdom.

It therefore follows that since divine love is the divine reality and divine wisdom is the divine manifestation (see Sections 14–16 above), spiritual warmth is Divinity emanating from the divine reality and spiritual light is Divinity emanating from the divine manifestation. This means that just as divine love is a property of divine wisdom and divine wisdom is a property of divine love because of this union (see Sections 34–39 above), spiritual warmth is a property of spiritual light and spiritual light is a property of spiritual warmth. As a result of this kind of oneness, it follows that warmth and light are a single whole as they emanate from the Lord as the sun.

We will see later, though [Section 125], that they are not accepted as a single whole by angels or by us.

The warmth and light that emanate from the Lord as the sun are what we call “spiritual”; and they are referred to as spiritual in the singular because they are a single whole. In the following pages, therefore, when it says “spiritual” it will mean both as a single whole. It is because of this spiritual [energy] that the whole other world is called “spiritual.” Everything in that world has its source in that spiritual [energy] and takes its name from it as well.

The reason the warmth and light are called “spiritual” is that God is called “the Spirit,” and God as the Spirit is that emanation. As to his very essence, God is called Jehovah; but he enlightens and gives life to heaven’s angels and to us of the church through that emanation. This is why it is said that giving life and bringing about enlightenment are acts performed by the spirit of Jehovah.

from Divine Love and Wisdom, Sections 99, 100 (Originally scheduled for publication 6/10/2018)

Notes:

Sections 14-16: Published 4/14/2018

Sections 34-39: Published 4/21/2018-4/22/2018

The sun of the spiritual world is seen at a middle elevation, as far from angels as our physical world’s sun is from us.

Many people bring with them from our world an image of God as high overhead and of the Lord as being in heaven among its angels. The reason they bring an image of God as high overhead is that God is called “most high” in the Word, and it says that he lives “on high.” This is why we lift up our eyes and our hands when we pray and worship, unaware that “highest” means “inmost.”

The reason people bring along an image of the Lord as being in heaven among its angels is that they think of him only as being like any other individual, or like an angel. They do not realize that the Lord is the real and only God, the one who rules the universe. If he were living in heaven among the angels, he could not keep the universe under his sight and hold it in his care and keeping. If he were not shining like the sun on the people in the spiritual world, angels could not have any light. Angels, that is, are spiritual beings, so only spiritual light is suited to their essence. When I discuss levels later [Section 182], we will see that there is a light in the heavens that is far, far greater than our light on earth.

As for the sun that is the source of angels’ warmth and light, they see it at about a forty-five degree angle above the lands where they live, at a middle elevation. It also seems to be about as far from angels as this world’s sun is from us.

They see the sun at that height and distance constantly; it does not move. This is why angels do not have stretches of time marked off into days and years or any daily progression from morning through noon to evening and on into night. They do not have a yearly sequence from spring through summer to autumn and on into winter, either. Instead, they have a constant daylight and constant springtime; which means that instead of “times” they have states, as already noted [Sections 70, 73].

from Divine Love and Wisdom, Sections 103, 104

Notes:

Sections 70-73: Published 5/29/2018-5/30/2018

The spiritual warmth and light that result from the emanation from the Lord as the sun form a single whole just as his divine love and wisdom do (Continued)

The oneness of [spiritual] warmth and light (that is, of the spiritual [energy] that emanates from the Lord as the sun) can be illustrated by the warmth and light that emanate from the sun of our physical world. These “two” are also a single whole as they radiate from the sun. The reason they are not a single whole on earth is to be found in the earth itself, not in the sun. The earth rotates daily on its axis and follows its annual ecliptic orbit. This is why its warmth and light do not seem to be a single whole, why there is more warmth than light in midsummer and more light than warmth in midwinter. The same thing happens in the spiritual world. While the earth there does not rotate or follow an orbit, angels do turn more and less toward the Lord. The ones who turn more toward him accept more of the warmth and less of the light; while the ones who turn less toward the Lord accept more of the light and less of the warmth. This is why the heavens, which are made up of angels, are marked off into two kingdoms, one called “heavenly” and the other called “spiritual.” Heavenly angels accept more of the warmth and spiritual angels accept more of the light.

The regions where angels live also look different depending on their acceptance of the warmth and light. The correspondence is exact, provided we think of angels’ change of state instead of earthly motion.

We will see later [Section 124] that in their own right, all the spiritual phenomena that stem from the warmth and light of their sun constitute a single whole in the same way, though they do not do so if we regard them as coming from the feelings that angels have. When the warmth and light are a single whole in the heavens, it is like The spiritual warmth and light that result from the emanation from the Lord as the sun form a single whole just as his divine love and wisdom do.. When they are not a single whole, it is like either summer or winter—not like winter in cold latitudes but like winter in warm latitudes. The essence of angelic nature is a balanced acceptance of love and wisdom, so angels are angels of heaven depending on the oneness of their love and wisdom. The same holds true for us of the church, if our love and wisdom, or charity and faith, are fully united.

from Divine Love and Wisdom, Sections 101, 102

That sun is not God. Rather, it is an emanation from the divine love and wisdom of the Divine-Human One. The same is true of warmth and light from that sun (Continued)

If you observe carefully the thoughts of your own mind, you can recognize that there is a spiritual light completely distinct from physical light. When a mind is thinking, it sees its objects in light, and people who think spiritually see truths as readily at midnight as in daytime. This is why we attribute light to our discernment and talk about “seeing.” One person may hear what someone else says and say, “I see that this is true,” meaning “I understand.” Since this understanding is spiritual, it cannot see by physical light. Physical light does not last, but departs with the sun. We can see from this that our discernment enjoys a light other than that of our eyes, and that this light comes from a different source.

Take care not to think that the spiritual world’s sun is actually God. The real God is a person. The first emanation from his love and wisdom is something fiery and spiritual that looks like a sun to angels. When the Lord makes himself visible to angels in person, then, he does so in human form, sometimes within the sun, sometimes outside it.

It is because of this correspondence that in the Word the Lord is called not only the sun but also fire and light. “The sun” refers to him as divine love and wisdom together; “the fire” refers to him as divine love, and “the light” refers to him as divine wisdom.

from Divine Love and Wisdom, Sections 96-98

That sun is not God. Rather, it is an emanation from the divine love and wisdom of the Divine-Human One. The same is true of warmth and light from that sun.

“The sun that angels see” (the sun that gives them warmth and light) does not mean the Lord himself. It means that first emanation from him that is the highest form of spiritual warmth. The highest form of spiritual warmth is spiritual fire, which is divine love and wisdom in its first correspondential form. This is why that sun looks fiery and also is fiery for angels, though it is not for us. What we experience as fire is not spiritual but physical, and the difference between these two is like the difference between life and death. The spiritual sun, then, brings spiritual people to life with its warmth and maintains spiritual things, while the physical sun does the same for physical people and things. It does not do this with its own power, though, but by an inflow of spiritual warmth that provides it with effective resources.

The spiritual fire where light dwells in its origin becomes a spiritual warmth and light that decrease as they emanate, with the decrease occurring by levels that will be discussed later. The ancients pictured this as brightly gleaming circles of reddish fire around the head of God, a form of representation that is still common today when God is portrayed as human in paintings.

It is obvious from actual experience that love generates warmth and wisdom generates light. When we feel love, we become warmer, and when we think from wisdom, it is like seeing things in the light. We can see from this that the first thing that emanates from love is warmth and that the first thing that emanates from wisdom is light. We can also see that these are correspondences, since the warmth does not occur within the love itself but as a result of it, in our volition and therefore in our bodies. The light does not occur within the wisdom, but in the thinking of our discernment and therefore in our speaking. That is, love and wisdom are the essence and life of warmth and light; and warmth and light are emanations from love and wisdom. Because they are emanations from them, they are also responsive to them.

from Divine Love and Wisdom, Sections 93-95