It is possible to know from a knowledge of correspondences how our life pleasures are changed after death into what corresponds to them; but since this is not common knowledge, I should like to shed some light on the matter from experience.
People who are caught up in evil and who have formed fixed false convictions against the truths of the church, especially people who have rejected the Word, flee from heaven’s light. They plunge into cellars that look murky through their openings and into crevices in the rocks and hide themselves there. This is because they have loved their false notions and hated true ones. Cellars like this, and crevices in the rocks as well, and false things, correspond to darkness; and light corresponds to things that are true. They find it pleasant to live there, and painful to live out in the open.
People who took delight in covert plotting and in manufacturing deceptive schemes in secret also live in these cellars and move into rooms so dark that people can barely see each other. They whisper in each other’s ears in the corners. This is what becomes of the pleasures of their love.
If people have loved the academic disciplines only in order to sound learned, without using them to develop their ability to reason, taking delight in their pride at the contents of their memories, they love sandy areas and prefer them to meadows and gardens because sandy areas correspond to these kinds of study.
People who are wrapped up in knowing the doctrines of churches, their own and others’, without applying them to life, love stony areas and live among rock piles. They avoid cultivated land because it is repulsive to them.
If people have given nature—and their own prudence—credit for everything and have used various devices to gain high office and a great deal of wealth, in the other life they study magical arts that are misuses of the divine design, and find in them the greatest pleasure of their life.
People who have adapted divine truths to their own loves and have therefore falsified them love urinary things because urinary things correspond to the pleasures of this kind of love.
People who were filthy misers live in cubicles and love the filth of pigs and the foul odors they breathe out from half-digested food in their stomachs.
If people have devoted their lives wholly to pleasure, living elegantly, pandering to the gullet and the belly, loving this as the greatest good of life, in the other life they love feces and latrines and find them delightful. This is because pleasures like these are spiritual filth. They avoid places that are clean and free from filth because they find them distasteful.
People who took pleasure in adultery pass their time in brothels where everything is filthy and foul. They love these places and avoid chaste homes. The moment they come near such homes they feel faint. Nothing pleases them more than to break up marriages.
People who have been bent on revenge and have therefore taken on a savage and sadistic nature love places like morgues, and are in hells of that sort. Others fare differently.
from Heaven and Hell, Section 488