Nevertheless, the difference between our life in the spiritual world and our life in the natural world is considerable, in regard both to our outer senses and the way they affect us and to our inner senses and the way they affect us. People who are in heaven have far more delicate senses. That is, they see and hear and also think more discerningly than when they were in this world. This is because they are seeing in heaven’s light, which vastly surpasses the world’s light (see above, Section 126), and they hear by way of a spiritual atmosphere that vastly surpasses the atmosphere of the earth (see Section 235). The difference in their outer senses is like that between something clear and something hidden by a cloud, or like noonday light and the dimness of evening. Because it is divine truth, heaven’s light enables angels’ sight to notice and differentiate the slightest things.
Further, their outer sight is responsive to their inner sight or discernment, since for angels the one sight flows into the other and they act as a single faculty. This is why they are so keen. Their hearing is similarly responsive to their perception, which is a function of both discernment and volition. So they pick up in the tone and words of speakers the slightest shadings of their affection and thought—shadings of affection in the tone, and shadings of thought in the words (see above, Sections 234–245).
However, the other senses are not as delicate for angels as their senses of sight and hearing, because sight and hearing serve their intelligence and wisdom, while the others do not. If the other senses were as sensitive, they would take away the light and pleasure of angels’ wisdom and interject a pleasure of motivations centering in various physical appetites, appetites that obscure and weaken the intellect to the extent that they flourish. This happens to people in the world as well, who become dull and mindless in regard to spiritual truths to the extent that they pander to their taste and to the sensual allurements of the body.
What was presented in the chapter on the wisdom of heaven’s angels (Sections 265–275) may suffice to indicate that the deeper senses of heaven’s angels, the senses of their thought and affection, are more delicate and perfect than the ones they had in the world.
As for the difference in state of people who are in hell from their state in the world, this too is substantial. The perfection and wonder of the outer and inner senses of angels in heaven is paralleled by their imperfection for people in hell. However, we need to deal with their state later.
from Heaven and Hell, Section 462a
Section 126: Published 11/22/2016
Section 235: Published 5/3/2018
Sections 234-245: Published 5/3/2018-5/6/2018
Sections 265-275: Published 10/18/2017-10/24/2017