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Freedom, Choice, Self-Compulsion, Conscience
See also:  Will and Understanding
and
Freedom (love of good) and Slavishness (love of evil)

Quoting from Swedenborg:

Heavenly Doctrine 82. Of the proprium of man, spoken of above (n. 70), that it is the love of self and of the world.

The proprium of man is nothing but dense evil (n. 210, 215, 731, 874-876, 987, 1047, 2307, 2308, 3518, 3701, 3812, 8480, 8550, 10283, 10284, 10286, 10731). The proprium of man is his will (n. 4328). The proprium of man consists in loving himself more than God, and the world more than heaven, and in making his neighbor of no account respectively to himself, thus it is the love of self and of the world (n. 694, 731, 4317, 5660). Not only every evil, but also every falsity, springs from the proprium of man, and this falsity is the falsity of evil (n. 1047, 10283, 10284, 10286). The proprium of man is hell with him (n. 694, 8480). Therefore he who is led by his proprium cannot be saved (n. 10731). The good which man does from the proprium is not good, but in itself is evil, because done for the sake of self and the world (n. 8478).

The proprium of man must be separated, in order that the Lord may be present with him (n. 1023, 1044). And it is actually separated when man is reformed (n. 9334-9336, 9452-9454, 9938). This is done by the Lord alone (n. 9445). Man by regeneration receives a heavenly proprium (n. 1937, 1947, 2881, 2883, 2891). This appears to man as his own proprium, but it is not his, but the Lord's with him (n. 8497). They who are in this proprium are in liberty itself, because liberty consists in being led by the Lord, and by His proprium (n. 892, 905, 2872, 2886, 2890-2892, 4096, 9586, 9587, 9589-9591). All liberty is from the proprium, and its quality according thereto (n. 2880). What is the quality of the heavenly proprium (n. 164, 5660, 8480). How the heavenly proprium is implanted (n. 1712, 1937, 1947).

Arcana Coelestia (AC) 1712. He divided himself against them by night. That this signifies the shade in which the apparent goods and truths were, is evident from the signification of "night," as being a state of shade. There is said to be a state of shade when it is not known whether the good and truth are apparent or are genuine. When anyone is in apparent good and truth, he supposes them to be genuine good and truth; the evil and falsity that are in apparent good and truth are what cause the shade, and make them appear genuine. They who are in ignorance can know no otherwise than that the good which they do is their own, and that the truth which they think is their own, and it is the same with those who attribute to themselves the goods they do, and place merit in them, not knowing that in this case they are not good, although they appear so; and that the Own and self-merit which they place in them are the evils and falsities which obscure and darken. So in many other cases.

[2] The kind and the measure of the evil and falsity which lie concealed in them, cannot possibly be so well seen in the life of the body as in the other life, where they are presented to view as in clear light. But the case is different if this is done from ignorance that is not confirmed, for in this case those evils and falsities are easily dispersed.

But if men confirm themselves in the belief that they can do good and resist evil by their own powers, and that they thus merit salvation, in this case this idea remains attached, and causes the good to be evil, and the truth to be falsity. But still it is according to order for a man to do good as of himself; and therefore he ought not to slacken his hand, with the thought, "If I can do nothing of good from myself, I ought to wait for immediate influx," and thus remain in a passive state, for this would be contrary to order; but he must do good as of himself; yet, when he reflects upon the good which he does or has done, let him think, acknowledge, and believe that the Lord has done the work in him.

[3] If he slackens his effort, thinking as has been said, he is then not a subject into which the Lord can operate. The Lord cannot flow into anyone who deprives himself of everything into which power can be infused. It is as if one were not willing to learn anything without a revelation to himself; or as if one would teach nothing unless the words were put into him; or as if one would attempt nothing unless he were put into action as one without will. But if these things were done, he would be still more indignant at being like an inanimate thing; when yet that which is animated by the Lord in a man is that which appears as if it were from himself. It is thus an eternal truth that a man does not live from himself, but that if he did not appear to live from himself he could not live at all.

Arcana Coelestia (AC) 1937. Humble thyself under her hands. That this signifies that it ought to compel itself to be under its sovereign power, is evident without explication. "To humble oneself" is expressed in the original tongue by a word which signifies "to afflict." That "to afflict oneself" is, in the internal sense, to compel oneself, may be seen from very many passages in the Word, and will be treated of in what follows. That man ought to compel himself to do what is good, to obey the things commanded by the Lord, and to speak truths, which is to "humble himself under" the Lord's hands, or to submit himself to the sovereign power of the Divine good and truth, involves more arcana than can be explained in a few words.

[2] There are certain spirits who during their life in the world, because they had been told that all good is from the Lord, and that a man can do nothing of himself, had held it as a principle not to compel themselves in anything, but to cease from all effort, thinking that as the case was so, all effort would be in vain; and therefore they had waited for immediate influx into the effort of their will, and did not compel themselves to do anything good, going so far that when anything evil crept in, as they felt no resistance from within, they resigned themselves to it also, supposing that it was permissible to do so. But these spirits are as it were devoid of what is their own, so that they have no determination to anything, and are therefore among the more useless, for they suffer themselves to be led alike by the evil and by the good, and suffer much from the evil.

[3] But they who have compelled themselves to resist what is evil and false-although at first they supposed that this was from themselves or from their own power, but were afterwards enlightened to see that their effort was from the Lord, even to the least of all the particulars of the effort-these in the other life cannot be led by evil spirits, but are among the happy. Thus we may see that a man ought to compel himself to do what is good and to speak what is true. The arcanum herein contained is that a man is thus gifted by the Lord with a heavenly Own, for this heavenly Own of man is formed in the effort of his thought; and if he does not maintain this effort by compelling himself (as the appearance is), he certainly does not maintain it by not compelling himself.

[4] That we may see how this is, let it be observed that in all self-compulsion to what is good there is a certain freedom, which is not discerned as such while the man is engaged in this self-compulsion, but still it is within. For instance, in one who is willing to undergo the risk of death for the sake of a certain end, or in one who is willing to suffer bodily pain for the sake of health, there is a willingness and thus a certain freedom from which the man acts, although the dangers and the pains, while he is in them, take away his perception of this willingness or freedom; and such is the case also with those who compel themselves to do what is good: there is a willingness within, and thus a freedom, from which and for the sake of which they compel themselves, that is to say, they do so for the sake of obedience to what the Lord has commanded, and for the sake of the salvation of their souls after death, within which although the man is not aware of it, there is still more interiorly a regard for the Lord's kingdom, and even for the Lord Himself.

[5] This is the case most of all during temptations, for in these-when the man compels himself to resist the evil and falsity which are infused and suggested by evil spirits, there is more of freedom than is possible in any state out of temptations-although at the time the man cannot comprehend this-for there is an interior freedom, from which he wills to subjugate evil, and which is so great as to equal the force and strength of the evil that is assailing him, for otherwise he could not possibly wage the combat.

This freedom is from the Lord, who insinuates it into the man's conscience, and by means of it causes him to overcome the evil as from what is his own. Through this freedom man acquires an Own in which the Lord can work what is good. Without an Own acquired, that is, given, through freedom, no man can possibly be reformed, because he cannot receive the new will, which is conscience. The freedom thus given is the very plane into which there is an influx of good and truth from the Lord. Hence it is that they who in temptations do not resist from their own will, or in freedom, give way.

[6] In all freedom there is man's life, because there is his love. Whatever a man does from love appears to him free. But in this freedom, when the man is compelling himself to resist what is evil and false, and to do what is good, there is heavenly love, which the Lord then insinuates, and through which He creates the man's Own; and therefore the Lord wills that it should appear to the man as his, although it is not his.

This Own which man during his bodily life thus receives through what is apparently compulsory, is filled by the Lord in the other life with illimitable delights and happinesses. Such persons are also by degrees enlightened to see and even to be confirmed in the truth, that of themselves they have not compelled themselves one atom, but that all things of the effort of their will, even the smallest, had been from the Lord; and that the reason why it had appeared as if it was of themselves was in order that a new will might be given them by the Lord as their own, and that in this way the life of heavenly love might be appropriated to them.

For the Lord wills to communicate to everyone what is His, and therefore He wills to communicate what is heavenly, so that it may appear as the man's, and in him, although it is not his. The angels are in such an Own; and in proportion as they are in the truth that all good and truth are from the Lord, they are in the delight and happiness of this Own.

[7] But they who despise and reject all good and truth, and who are willing to believe nothing that is repugnant to their cupidities and reasonings, cannot compel themselves; and thus cannot receive this Own of conscience, or new will. From what has been said above it is also evident that to compel oneself is not to be compelled; for no good ever comes from compulsion, as when a man is compelled by another man to do what is good; but it is evident that in the case we are now considering the self-compulsion comes from a certain freedom that is unknown to the man, since from the Lord there is never any compulsion.

Hence it is a universal law that all that which is good and true is inseminated in freedom, for otherwise the ground cannot possibly receive and cherish that which is good, and in fact there is no ground in which the seed can grow.

Arcana Coelestia (AC) 1947. Because Jehovah hath hearkened to thine affliction. That this signifies while it was submitting itself, is evident from what was said above (n. 1937), in that to "humble and afflict oneself" denotes to submit to the sovereign control of the internal man, which submission was there treated of, and it is shown that this is to compel oneself; also that in compelling oneself there is freedom, that is, what is spontaneous and voluntary, by which compelling oneself is distinguished from being compelled.

It was also shown that without this freedom, that is, spontaneity or willingness, man cannot possibly be reformed and receive any heavenly Own; and further that there is more of freedom in temptations than out of them, although the contrary appears to be the case, for the freedom is then stronger in proportion to the assaults of evils and falsities, and is strengthened by the Lord in order that a heavenly Own may be conferred upon the man; and for this reason the Lord is more present with us while we are in temptations.

It was shown further that the Lord never compels anyone; for he who is compelled to think what is true and do what is good is not reformed, but thinks falsity and wills evil all the more. All compulsion has this effect, as we may see from the records and examples of life, for from them we know these two things: that consciences do not suffer themselves to be compelled, and that we strive after what is forbidden. Moreover everyone desires to pass from non-freedom into freedom, for this belongs to man's life.

[2] Hence it is evident that anything which is not from freedom, that is, which is not from what is spontaneous or voluntary, is not acceptable to the Lord; for when anyone worships the Lord from what is not free, he worships from nothing that is his own, and in this case it is the external which moves, that is, which is moved, from being compelled, while the internal is null, or resistant, or is even contradictory to it.

While man is being regenerated, he, from the freedom with which he is gifted by the Lord, exercises self-compulsion, and humbles and even afflicts his rational, in order that it may submit itself, and thereby he receives a heavenly Own, which is afterwards gradually perfected by the Lord, and is made more and more free, so that it becomes the affection of good and thence of truth, and has delight, and in both the freedom and the delight there is happiness like that of angels. This freedom is what the Lord speaks of in John:

The truth shall make* you free; if the Son makes you free, you shall be* free indeed (John 8:32, 36).

[3] The nature of this freedom is utterly unknown to those who do not possess conscience, for they make freedom consist in doing as they please and in the license of thinking and speaking what is false, of willing and doing what is evil, and of not compelling and humbling, still less of afflicting such desires; when yet the very reverse is the case, as the Lord also teaches in the same gospel:

Everyone that committeth sin is the servant of sin (John 8:34).

This slavish freedom they receive from the infernal spirits who are with them and who infuse it, and when they are in the life of these spirits they are also in their loves and cupidities, and an impure and excrementitious delight breathes upon them, and when they are being as it were carried away by the torrent, they suppose themselves to be in freedom, but it is infernal freedom. The difference between this infernal freedom and heavenly freedom is that the one is that of death, and drags them down to hell, while the other, or heavenly freedom, is of life and uplifts them to heaven.

[4] That all true internal worship comes from freedom, and none from compulsion, and that if worship is not from freedom it is not internal worship, is evident from the Word, as from the sacrifices that were freewill offerings or vows, or offerings of peace or of thanksgiving; which were called "gifts" and "offerings" (concerning which see Num. 15:3, etc.; Deut. 12:6; 16:10-11; 23:23-24). So in David:

With a free-will offering will I sacrifice unto Thee; I will confess to Thy name, O Jehovah, for it is good (Ps. 54:6).

So again from the contribution or collection which they were to make for the Tabernacle, and for the garments of holiness, spoken of in Moses:

Speak unto the sons of Israel, and let them take for Me an offering; from every man whom his heart impels willingly ye shall take My offering (Exod. 25:2).

And again: Whosoever is of a willing heart let him bring it, Jehovah's offering (Exod. 35:5).

[5] Moreover the humiliation of the rational man, or its affliction (from freedom, as before said), was also represented by the affliction of souls on days of solemnity, as mentioned in Moses:

It shall be a statute of eternity unto you; in the seventh month, on the tenth of the month, ye shall afflict your souls (Lev. 16:29).

And again: On the tenth of the seventh month, this is the day of expiations; there shall be a holy convocation unto you, and ye shall afflict your souls; every soul that shall not have afflicted itself in that same day, shall be cut off from his peoples (Lev. 23:27, 29).

It was for this reason that the unleavened bread, in which there was nothing fermented, is called the "bread of affliction" (Deut. 16:2-3).

[6] "Affliction" is thus spoken of in David:

Jehovah, who shall sojourn in Thy tent? who shall dwell in the mountain of Thy holiness? He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness; he that sweareth to afflict himself, and changeth not (Ps. 15:1-2, 4).

That "affliction" denotes the mastering and subjugation of the evils and falsities that rise up from the external man into the rational, may be seen from what has been said. Thus "affliction" does not mean that we should plunge ourselves into poverty and wretchedness, or that we should renounce all bodily delights, for in this way evil is not mastered and subjugated; and moreover some other evil may be aroused, namely, a sense of merit on account of the renunciation; and besides, man's freedom suffers, in which alone, as in ground, the good and truth of faith can be inseminated. (Concerning "affliction" as denoting also temptation, see above, n. 1846.)

Arcana Coelestia (AC)

1937[2] There are certain spirits who during their life in the world, because they had been told that all good is from God, and that an individual can do nothing of oneself, had held it as a principle not to compel themselves in anything, but to cease from all effort, thinking that as the case was so, all effort would be in vain; and therefore they had waited for immediate influx into the effort of their will, and did not compel themselves to do anything good, going so far that when anything evil crept in, as they felt no resistance from within, they resigned themselves to it also, supposing that it was permissible to do so. But these spirits are as it were devoid of what is their own, so that they have no determination to anything, and are therefore among the more useless, for they suffer themselves to be led alike by the evil and by the good, and suffer much from the evil.

[3] But they who have compelled themselves to resist what is evil and false-although at first they supposed that this was from themselves or from their own power, but were afterwards enlightened to see that their effort was from the Divine, even to the least of all the particulars of the effort - these in the other life cannot be led by evil spirits, but are among the happy.

Thus we may see that we ought to compel ourselves to do what is good and to speak what is true. The arcanum herein contained is that we are thus gifted by the Divine with a heavenly Own, for this heavenly Own of ours is formed in the effort of our thought; and if we do not maintain this effort by compelling ourselves (as the appearance is), we certainly do not maintain it by not compelling ourselves.

[4] That we may see how this is, let it be observed that in all self-compulsion to what is good there is a certain freedom, which is not discerned as such while we are engaged in this self-compulsion, but still it is within. For instance, in one who is willing to undergo the risk of death for the sake of a certain end, or in one who is willing to suffer bodily pain for the sake of health, there is a willingness and thus a certain freedom from which the individual acts, although the dangers and the pains, while one is in them, take away our perception of this willingness or freedom; and such is the ease also with those who compel themselves to do what is good: there is a willingness within, and thus a freedom, from which and for the sake of which they compel themselves, that is to say, they do so for the sake of obedience to what God has commanded, and for the sake of the salvation of their souls after death, within which although they are not aware of it, there is still more interiorly a regard for God's kingdom in heaven, and even for the Divine itself.

[5] This is the case most of all during temptations, for in these-when we compel ourselves to resist the evil and falsity which are infused and suggested by evil spirits there is more of freedom than is possible in any state out of temptations-although at the time we cannot comprehend this-for there is an interior freedom, from which we will to subjugate evil within ourselves, and which is so great as to equal the force and strength of the evil that is assailing us from within, for otherwise we could not possibly wage the combat.

This freedom is from the Divine, who insinuates it into our conscience, and by means of it causes us to overcome the evil within us as from what is our own power. Through this freedom we acquire an Own in which the Divine can work what is good. Without an Own acquired, that is, given, through freedom, no one can possibly be reformed, because one cannot receive the new will, which is conscience. The freedom thus given is the very plane into which there is an influx of good and truth from the Divine. Hence it is that they who in temptations do not resist from their own will, or in freedom, give way.

[6] In all freedom there is our life, because there is our love. Whatever we doe from love appears to us free. But in this freedom, when we are compelling ourselves to resist what is evil and false, and to do what is good, there is heavenly love, which the Divine then insinuates, and through which is created our Own; and therefore the Divine wills that it should appear to us as our own, although it is not ours. This Own which we during our bodily life thus receives through what is apparently compulsory, is filled by the Divine in the other life with illimitable delights and happinesses. Such persons are also by degrees enlightened to see and even to be confirmed in the truth, that of themselves they have not compelled themselves one atom, but that all things of the effort of their will, even the smallest, had been from the Divine; and that the reason why it had appeared as if it was of themselves was in order that a new will might be given them by the Divine as their own, and that in this way the life of heavenly love might be appropriated to them.

For God wills to communicate to every one what belongs to the Divine, and therefore wills to communicate what is heavenly, so that it may appear as ours, and in us, although it is not ours. The angels are in such an Own; and in proportion as they are in the truth that all good and truth are from the Lord, they are in the delight and happiness of this Own.

[7] But they who despise and reject all good and truth, and who are willing to believe nothing that is repugnant to their cupidities and reasonings, cannot compel themselves; and thus cannot receive this Own of conscience, or new will. From what has been said above it is also evident that to compel one's self is not to be compelled; for no good ever comes from compulsion, as when we are compelled by another person to do what is good; but it is evident that in the case we are now considering the self-compulsion comes from a certain freedom that is unknown to us, since from the Divine there is never any compulsion. Hence it is a universal law that all that which is good and true is inseminated in freedom, for otherwise the ground cannot possibly receive and cherish that which is good, and in fact there is no ground in which the seed can grow.

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Apocalypse Explained (AE)

1168. [2] So far as man is removed from evils he is removed from hell, for evils and hell are one and so far as he is removed from these he enters into goods and is conjoined with heaven, for goods and heaven are one. Man thus becomes another man; his freedom, his good, his mind, and his understanding and will, are turned about, for he becomes an angel of heaven. His freedom, which before had been a freedom to think and will evil becomes a freedom to think and will good, which in itself is essential freedom. Until a man is in this freedom he does not know what freedom is, for from the freedom of evil he felt the freedom of good to be slavery; but now from the freedom of good he feels the freedom of evil to be slavery, as it is in itself. The good that man had before done, since it was from the freedom of evil, could not be good in itself, for it had in it the love of self or of the world. Good can have no other, origin than love; therefore such as the love is such is the good; yet even when the love is evil its delight is felt as good, although it is evil. But after this change the good that man does is good in itself, because it is from the Lord who is good itself, as has been said above.

[3] The mind of man, before it was conjoined to heaven was turned backwards, because it had not been led out of hell. When it is in a state of reformation, it looks from truth to good, thus from left to right, which is contrary to order. But when the mind has been conjoined to heaven it is turned forwards and lifted up to the Lord and looks from right to left, that is, from good to truth, which is according to order. Thus a turning is brought about. It is the same with the understanding and will, since the understanding is a recipient of truth, and the will a recipient of good. Before man has been led out of hell the understanding and will do not act as one; for man then sees and acknowledges from the understanding many things that he does not will, because he does not love them. But when man has been conjoined to heaven the understanding and will act as one, for the understanding then becomes the will's understanding; for when the turning has been effected whatever a man wills he loves, and whatever he wills from love he thinks. Thus when a man has been removed from evils by resistance and combat against them as if from himself, he comes into the love of truth and good; and then everything that he wills and consequently does he also thinks and consequently speaks.

Arcana Caelestia

3539. [2] The case herein with man is this: The end of regeneration is that man may be made new as to his internal man, thus as to his soul or spirit; but man cannot be made new or regenerated as to his internal man unless he is regenerated as to his external man also; for although after death man becomes a spirit, he nevertheless has with him in the other life the things which are of his external man, namely, natural affections, and also doctrinal things, and even memory-knowledges; in a word, all things of the exterior or natural memory (see n. 2475-2483); for these are the planes in which his interiors arc terminated; and therefore according to the disposition that has been made of these things is the character of interior things when they flow into them, because they are modified in them. This shows that man must be regenerated or made new not only as to his internal or rational man, but also as to his external or natural man; and unless this were the case there would not be any correspondence. (That there is a correspondence between the internal man and its spiritual things, and the external man and its natural things, may be seen above, n. 2971, 2987, 2989, 2990, 3002, 3493.)

[3] The state of the regeneration of man is described in a representative sense in this chapter by "Esau" and "Jacob;" here, the quality of man's first state while he is being regenerated, or before he has been regenerated; for this state is entirely inverted in respect to that in which man is when he has been regenerated. For in the former state, during regeneration, or before he has been regenerated, intellectual things which are of truth apparently act the first part; but when he has been regenerated, the things of the will, which are of good, act the first part. That intellectual things which are of truth apparently act the first part in the first state, was represented by Jacob, in that he claimed the birthright of Esau for himself (see n. 3325, 3336) and also in that he claimed the blessing, which is here treated of; and that the state has been completely inverted, is represented by Jacob's feigning to be Esau, in clothing himself with the garments of Esau and the skins of the kids of the she-goats for in this state rational truth not yet thus conjoined with rational good, or what is the same, the understanding not thus conjoined with the will, in this manner inflows and acts into the natural, and disposes inversely the things which are there.

[4] This can also be seen from much experience, especially from the fact that a man is able to observe in the understanding, and thereby his natural can know, many things which are good and true, and yet the will cannot as yet act in accordance with them; as for instance that love and charity are the essential in man: this the intellectual faculty of man can see and confirm, but until he has been regenerated the will faculty cannot acknowledge it: there are even those who are in no love to the Lord whatever, and in no charity toward the neighbor, who well apprehend this. In like manner that love is the very life of man, and that such as the love is, such is the life; and likewise that everything delightful and everything pleasant is from love, consequently all joy and all happiness and therefore also such as the love is, such is the joy and such the happiness.

A man is also able to apprehend in his understanding, even should his will dissent or go contrary thereto, that the happiest life is from love to the Lord and from charity toward the neighbor, because the very Divine flows into it; and on the other hand that the most miserable life is from the love of self and the love of the world, because hell flows into it ant] from this it may be perceptible to the understanding, yet not to the will, that love to the Lord is the life of heaven, and that mutual love is the soul from this life; and therefore in so far as a man does not think from the life of his will, nor reflect upon his life derived therefrom, so far he perceives this in his understanding; but in so far as he thinks from the life of his will, so far he does not perceive, nay denies it.

[5] Also to the understanding it may clearly appear that it is into the humiliation with a man that the Divine can inflow; for the reason that in this state the loves of self and of the world, and consequently the infernal things which oppose, are removed; but yet so long as the will is not new and the understanding has not been united to it, the man cannot be in humiliation of heart; nay, in so far as the man is in a life of evil, that is, in so far as his will is toward evil, so far this state is not possible; and what is more, so far the matter is obscure to him, and so far he even denies it. Hence also a man can perceive in his understanding that the humiliation of man is not for the sake of the Lord's love of glory, but for the sake of His Divine love, and in order that He can thereby inflow with good and truth and make the man blessed and happy; nevertheless so far as the will is consulted, so far this is obscured. The same is true in very many other cases.

[6] This faculty of man of being able to understand what is good and true although he does not will it, has been given to man in order that he may have the capacity of being reformed and regenerated; on which account this faculty exists with the evil as well as with the good; nay, with the evil it is sometimes more acute, but with this difference, that with the evil there is no affection of truth for the sake of life, that is, for the sake of the good of life from truth, and therefore they cannot be reformed; but with the good there is the affection of truth for the sake of life, that is, for the sake of the good of life, and therefore they can be reformed.

But the first state of the reformation of these is that the truth of doctrine appears to them to be in the first place, and the good of life in the second, because they do what is good from truth; and their second state is that the good of life is in the first place, and the truth of doctrine in the second, for then they do what is good from good, that is, from the will of good; and when this is the case, because the will has been conjoined with the understanding as in a marriage, the man has been regenerated. In the internal sense these two states are treated of in the things said concerning Esau and Jacob.

Conjugial Love

159. III. THAT THE WIFE'S WILL CONJOINS ITSELF WITH THE MAN'S UNDERSTANDING, AND HENCE THE MAN'S UNDERSTANDING WITH THE WIFE'S WILL. The reason is, because the male is born to become understanding and the female to become a will loving the understanding of the male; from which it follows, that conjugial conjunction is a conjunction of the wife's will with the man's understanding, and reciprocally, of the man's understanding with the wife's will. Any one can see that there is the closest conjunction of the understanding and the will, and also that it is such that the one faculty can enter into the other and can be delighted by reason of the conjunction and in it.

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Divine Love and Wisdom

410. (12) Love or the will conjoins itself to wisdom or the understanding, and causes wisdom or the understanding to be reciprocally conjoined to it. That love or the will conjoins itself to wisdom or the understanding is plain from their correspondence with the heart and lungs. Anatomical observation shows that the heart is in its life's motion when the lungs are not yet in motion; this it shows by cases of swooning and of suffocation, also by the fetus in the womb and the chick in the egg. Anatomical observation shows also that the heart, while acting alone, forms the lungs and so adjusts them that it may carry on respiration in them; also that it so forms the other viscera and organs that it may carry on Various uses in them, the organs of the face that it may have sensation, the organs of motion that it may act, and the remaining parts of the body that it may exhibit uses corresponding to the affections of love From all this it can now for the first time be shown that as the heart produces such things for the sake of the various functions which it is afterwards to discharge in the body, so love, in its receptacle called the will, produces like things for the sake of the various affections that constitute its form, which is the human form (as was shown above).

Now as the first and nearest of love's affections are affection for knowing, affection for understanding, and affection for seeing what it knows and understands, it follows, that for these affections love forms the understanding and actually enters into them when it begins to feel and to act and to think. To this the understanding contributes nothing, as is evident from the analogy of the heart and lungs (of which above). From all this it can be seen, that love or the will conjoins itself to wisdom or the understanding, and not wisdom or the understanding to love or the will; also from this it is evident that knowledge, which love acquires to itself by the affection for knowing, and perception of truth, which it acquires by the affection for understanding, and thought which it acquires by the affection for seeing what it knows and understands, are not of the understanding but of love.

Thoughts, perceptions, and knowledges therefrom, flow in, it is true, out of the spiritual world, yet they are received not by the understanding but by love, according to its affections in the understanding. It appears as if the understanding received them, and not love or the will, but this is an illusion. It appears also as if the understanding conjoined itself to love or the will, but this too, is an illusion; love or the will conjoins itself to the understanding, and causes the understanding to be reciprocally conjoined to - it. This reciprocal conjunction is from love's marriage with wisdom, wherefrom a conjunction seemingly reciprocal, from the life and consequent power of love, is effected. It is the same with the marriage of good and truth; for good is of love and truth is of the understanding. Good does everything and it receives truth into its house and conjoins itself with it so far as the truth is accordant. Good can also admit truths which are not accordant; but this it does from an affection for knowing, for understanding, and for thinking its own things, whilst it has not as yet determined itself to uses, which are its ends and are called its goods.

Of reciprocal conjunction, that is, the conjunction of truth with good, there is none whatever. That truth is reciprocally conjoined is from the life belonging to good. From this it is that every man and every spirit and angel is regarded by the Lord according to his love or good, and no one according to his intellect, or his truth separate from love or good. For man's life is his love (as was shown above), and his life is qualified according as he has exalted his affections by means of truth, that is, according as he has perfected his affections by wisdom. For the affections of love are exalted and perfected by means of truths, thus by means of wisdom. Then love acts conjointly with its wisdom, as though from it; but it acts from itself through wisdom, as through its own form, and this derives nothing whatever from the understanding, but everything from a kind of determination of love called affection.

Heaven and Hell

370. I have been told by angels that so far as a married pair are so conjoined they are in marriage love, and also to the same extent in intelligence, wisdom and happiness, because Divine truth and Divine good which are the source of all intelligence, wisdom, and happiness, flow chiefly into marriage love; consequently marriage love, since it is also the marriage of good and truth, is the very plane of Divine influx. For that love, as it is a conjunction of the understanding and will, is also a conjunction of truth and good, since the understanding receives Divine truth and is formed out of truths, and the will receives Divine good and is formed out of goods. For what a man wills is good to him, and what he understands is truth to him; therefore it is the same whether you say conjunction of understanding and will or conjunction of truth and good.

Conjunction of truth and good is what makes an angel; it makes his intelligence, wisdom, and happiness; for an angel is an angel accordingly as good in him is conjoined with truth and truth with good; or what is the same, accordingly as love in him is conjoined with faith and faith with love.

Heaven and Hell

422. The world of spirits is an intermediate place between heaven and hell and also an intermediate state of the man after death. It has been shown to me not only that it is an intermediate place, having the hells below it and the heavens above it, but also that it is in an intermediate state, since so long as man is in it he is not yet either in heaven or in hell. The state of heaven in man is the conjunction of good and truth in him; and the state of hell is the conjunction of evil and falsity in him. Whenever good in a man-spirit is conjoined to truth he comes into heaven, because that conjunction, as just said, is heaven in him; but whenever evil in a man-spirit is conjoined with falsity he comes into hell, because that conjunction is hell in him. That conjunction is effected in the world of spirits, man then being in an intermediate state. It is the same thing whether you say the conjunction of the understanding and the will, or the conjunction of good and truth.

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Heaven and Hell

423. Let something first be said about the conjunction of the understanding and the will, and its being the same thing as the conjunction of good and truth, that being the conjunction that is effected in the world of spirits. Man has an understanding and a will. The understanding receives truths and is formed out of them, and the will receives goods and is formed out of them; therefore whatever a man understands and thinks from his understanding he calls true, and whatever a man wills and thinks from his will he calls good. From his understanding man can think and thus perceive both what is true and what is good; and yet he thinks what is true and good from the will only when he wills it and does it. When he wills it and from willing does it, it is both in his understanding and in his will, consequently in the man.

For neither the understanding alone nor the will alone makes the man, but the understanding and will together; therefore whatever is in both is in the man, and is appropriated to him. That which is in the understanding alone is in man, and yet not really in him; it is only a thing of his memory, or a matter of knowledge in his memory about which he can think when in company with others and outside of himself, but not in himself; that is, about which he can speak and reason, and can simulate affections and gestures that are in accord with it.

Last Judgment (Posthumous)

330. It is to be observed, that there may be anything either spiritual, moral or civil whose effect man has produced and thence has loved; the man (1) hears it from another, or he reads it in a book. (2) Thence it becomes his thought. (3) In the thought there is raised up a perception of it, because this was the first of that thin. (4) His affection is in the perception, thus the affection of truth. (5) This affection which is called the affection of truth is from the affection of good, which is of the will, thus from the will in the affection of truth there is effected the conjunction of good and truth, in which conjunction the will and the understanding or good and truth act as one.

(6) Thus one is concealed in the other, within, and all are aroused from the ultimate, even through the hearing and sight, that is, the rousing up, namely because the will is concealed inmostly in the hearing, and thence in the thought, and it goes forth not otherwise than the spiritual sense and the celestial sense from the natural sense into the hearing, and thence sight is simultaneous. But it does not produce; production is effected by the will or the affection of good into the affection of truth, thence into the perception and from this into the thought; but not vice versa. From these things it is evident whence are appearances.

True Christian Religion

99. The union is reciprocal, because no union or conjunction be tween two persons is possible unless each in turn approached the other. In the whole heaven, and in the whole world, and in the entire man, all conjunction has its source in the reciprocal approach of one to another, each then willing in oneness with the other. From this comes homogeneity and sympathy, also unanimity and concord, in every particular of each. In every man there is such a reciprocal conjunction of soul and body; such is the conjunction of the spirit of man with the sensory and motor organs of his body; such is the conjunction of the heart and the lungs; such is the conjunction of the will and the understanding; such is the conjunction in man of all the members and viscera in themselves and with each other; the minds of all who interiorly love each other are so conjoined, for this conjunction is inscribed upon all love and friendship; since love desires to love and be loved.

Of all things in the world that are fully conjoined one to the other there is a reciprocal conjunction. There is a like conjunction of the sun's heat with the heat of wood and mineral, of vital heat with the heat of all the fibers of animate things, of the soil with the root, through the root with the tree, and through the tree with the fruit; a like conjunction of the magnet with iron; and so on. Unless conjunction is effected by the reciprocal and mutual approach of one to another, no internal but only external conjunction is effected, and this in time is dissolved by mutual consent, sometimes even so far that they no longer recognize each other.

True Christian Religion

589. It must be known that the ability to elevate the understanding even to the intelligence in which the angels of heaven are, is by creation inherent in every man, the wicked as well as the good, and even in every devil in hell, for all who are in hell have been men. This has been frequently shown to me by living experience. But such are not intelligent but insane in spiritual things, because they do not will good but evil, consequently they are averse to knowing and understanding truths, for truths favor good and oppose evil.

From all this it is clear that the first step in the new birth is a reception of truths by the understanding, and the second is the will to act in accordance with truths, and finally to practise them. No one, however, can he said to be reformed by mere knowledges of truth; for man is able to acquire these and to talk about, teach, and preach them through his ability to elevate his understanding, above the love of his will. But he is a reformed man who has an affection for truth for the sake of truth; for this affection conjoins itself with the will, and if it goes on it conjoins the will to the understanding, and then regeneration begins. But how regeneration afterward advances and is perfected, will be told in what follows.

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Divine Providence

73. I. MAN HAS REASON AND FREEDOM, OR RATIONALITY AND LIBERTY; AND THESE TWO FACULTIES ARE FROM THE LORD IN MAN. That man has the faculty of understanding, which is rationality, and the faculty of thinking, willing, speaking and doing that which he understands, which is liberty; and that these two faculties are from the Lord, in man, have been treated of in the treatise THE DIVINE LOVE AND WISDOM (n. 264-270, 425); and also above (n. 43, 44). As many doubts, however, may arise concerning both these faculties when they are made subjects of thought, I will at the outset merely present some observations on freedom of acting according to reason in man.

[2] First, however, it should be known that all freedom is of love, insomuch that love and freedom are one; and as love is the life of man, freedom also is of his life. For every delight that a man has is from his love, nor can delight come from any other source; and to act from the delight of love is to act from freedom, for a man is led by delight as something that is borne along by the current of a river. Now, since there are many kinds of loves, some in harmony and others discordant, it follows that there are likewise many kinds of freedom; but in general there are three, natural, rational and spiritual.

[3] Natural freedom every man has from inheritance. From it man loves nothing but self and the world: his first love is nothing else. Since all evils exist from these two loves, and hence also become evils of love, it follows that to think and to will evils is man's natural freedom; and that when he has confirmed evils in himself by reasonings he does evils from freedom in accordance with his reason. To act thus is from his faculty called liberty, and to confirm the evils is from his faculty called rationality. [4] A man's desire, for example, to commit adultery, to defraud, to blaspheme, to take revenge, is from the love into which he is born; and when he confirms these evils in himself and thereby makes them allowable, then from delight in the love of them he thinks and wills them freely as it were in accordance with his reason, and so far as civil laws do not restrain, he speaks and acts accordingly. It is from the Divine Providence of the Lord that man is permitted to do so, because he has freedom or liberty. Man is in this freedom by nature, because from inheritance, and in this freedom are those who by reasonings have confirmed it in themselves from the delight of self-love and the love of the world.

[5] Rational freedom is from the love of reputation for the sake of honour and gain. The delight of this love is to appear externally as a moral man; and because such a one loves this reputation, he does not defraud, commit adultery, take revenge, or blaspheme; and because he makes his conduct a matter of reason, he also from freedom according to his reason acts in sincere, chaste and friendly ways; indeed, he can from reason speak well of such conduct. But if his rational is merely natural, and not at the same time spiritual, this freedom is only external and not internal freedom; for he does not in the least interiorly love such good, but only outwardly for the sake of reputation, as has been said; and for this reason the good deeds that he does are not in themselves good. Still, he can say that such things ought to be done for the public welfare; but this he says not from any love of the public welfare, but from the love of his own honour or gain. His freedom, therefore, derives nothing from a love of the public welfare, nor does his reason derive anything, for it harmonises with his love. Consequently this rational freedom is merely a more interior natural freedom; and this freedom also by the Divine Providence of the Lord remains with every man.

[6] Spiritual freedom is from the love of eternal life. Into this love and its delight no one comes but the man who thinks that evils are sins, and consequently does not will them, and at the same time looks to the Lord. As soon as a man does so, he is in this freedom; for no one has the power not to will evils because they are sins and so to refrain from doing them, unless from a more interior or higher freedom which is from a more interior or higher love. At first this freedom does not appear to be freedom, and yet it is; and later it does so appear, when the man acts from freedom itself according to reason itself, in thinking, willing, speaking and doing what is good and true. This freedom increases as natural freedom decreases and becomes subservient; and it conjoins itself with rational freedom which it purifies. [7] Everyone may come into this freedom provided he is willing to think that there is an eternal life, and that the temporary delight and bliss of a life in time are but as a fleeting shadow compared with the never-ending delight and bliss of a life in eternity. This a man can think if he wishes, because he has rationality and liberty, and because the Lord, from whom these two faculties are derived, continually gives him the ability to do so.

 

 

 

Divine Love and Wisdom (Ager) 140.

140. EVERY SPIRIT, WHATEVER HIS QUALITY, TURNS IN LIKE MANNER TO HIS RULING LOVE.

It shall first be explained what a spirit is, and what an angel is. Every man after death comes, in the first place, into the world of spirits, which is midway between heaven and hell, and there passes through his own times, that is, his own states, and becomes prepared, according to his life, either for heaven or for hell. So long as one stays in that world he is called a spirit. He who has been raised out of that world into heaven is called an angel; but he who has been cast down into hell is called either a satan or a devil. So long as these continue in the world of spirits, he who is preparing for heaven is called an angelic spirit; and he who is preparing for hell, an infernal spirit; meanwhile the angelic spirit is conjoined with heaven, and the infernal spirit with hell. All spirits in the world of spirits are adjoined to men; because men, in respect to the interiors of their minds, are in like manner between heaven and hell, and through these spirits they communicate with heaven or with hell according to their life. It is to be observed that the world of spirits is one thing, and the spiritual world another; the world of spirits is that which has just been spoken of; but the spiritual world includes that world, and heaven and hell.

 

Divine Providence

140. No one is reformed in a state of misfortune, if only then he thinks of God and implores His aid, because this is a state of compulsion; therefore as soon as he comes into a state of freedom he goes back into his former state in which he had thought little or nothing concerning God. It is otherwise with those who had, while in a free state, feared God before misfortune. By fearing God is meant fearing to offend Him, and to offend Him is to sin. This is not a matter of fear but of love; for anyone who loves another fears to do him wrong, and the more he loves the greater is his fear. Without this fear love is insipid and superficial, a matter of thought only and not of the will. By states of misfortune are meant states of despair arising from peril, as in battles, duels, shipwrecks, falls, fires, imminent or unexpected loss of wealth, also of office and consequently of honour, and other similar dangers. To think of God only when in these states is not from God but from self; for the mind is then as it were imprisoned in the body; thus not in liberty and therefore not in rationality; and without these no reformation is possible.

 

Divine Providence

145. V. IT IS NOT CONTRARY TO RATIONALITY AND LIBERTY TO COMPEL ONESELF. It was shown in what has gone before that man has an internal and an external of thought; that these are distinct like what is prior and what is posterior or like what is higher and what is lower; and that, because they are so distinct, they can act separately and also conjointly. They act separately when from the external of his thought a man speaks and acts otherwise than as he thinks and wills interiorly; and they act conjointly when he speaks and acts as he interiorly thinks and wills. The latter is, generally the case with the sincere, but the former with the insincere. [2] Now since the internal and the external of the mind are in this way distinct, the internal can even fight with the external and by combat force it to compliance. Combat takes place when a man thinks that evils are sins and therefore resolves to desist from them; for when he desists a door is opened, and when it is opened the lusts of evil which occupied the internal of his thought are cast out by the Lord and affections of good are implanted in their place. This is done in the internal of thought. But as the delights of the lusts of evil which invest the external of thought cannot be cast out at the same time, a combat takes place between the internal and the external of thought. The internal wishes to cast out these delights because they are delights of evil and not in accord with the affections of good in which the internal now is; and instead of the delights of evil it wishes to introduce delights of good that are in accord. The delights of good are what are called goods of charity. From this opposition arises a combat, and if it increases in severity it is called temptation.

[3] Now since a man is a man by virtue of the internal of his thought, this being the spirit of man itself, it is evident that a man compels himself when he forces the external of his thought to compliance, that is, to receive the delights of his affections, which are the goods of charity. It is evident that this is not contrary to rationality and liberty but is in accordance with them; for rationality causes the combat and liberty carries it on. Liberty itself with rationality also has its seat in the internal man and from that in the external. [4] When, therefore, the internal conquers, as happens when the internal has reduced the external to obedient compliance, then liberty itself and rationality itself are given to man by the Lord; for man is then withdrawn by the Lord from infernal freedom, which in itself is slavery, and is brought into heavenly freedom, which in itself is freedom itself and he is granted association with angels. That those are slaves who are in sins, and that the Lord makes those free who receive truth from Him through the Word, He teaches in John viii. 31-36.

 

Divine Providence

146. This may be illustrated by the example of a man who has taken delight in fraud and secret theft, but who now sees and interiorly acknowledges that these are sins, and therefore desires to desist from them. When he desists there arises a combat of the internal man with the external. The internal man has an affection for sincerity, but the external man still has delight in fraud; and as this delight is the direct opposite of the delight of sincerity it does not give way unless it is compelled; and it cannot be compelled unless by combat. When victory has been won the external man is introduced into the delight of the love of what is sincere, which is charity; and afterwards delight in fraud gradually loses its pleasure for him. It is the same with all other sins, as with adultery and whoredom, revenge and hatred, blasphemy and lying. But the hardest of all combats is with the love of rule from the love of self. He who subdues this easily subdues all other evil loves, for this is their head.

 

Divine Providence

147. It will also be briefly stated how the Lord casts out lusts of evil, which beset the internal man from birth, and how He bestows in their place affections of good when a man as of himself removes evils as sins. It was shown before that man has a natural mind, a spiritual mind and a celestial mind; and that he is in the natural mind alone, as long as he is in the lusts of evil and their delight; and that during this time the spiritual mind is closed. But as soon as he, after self-examination, acknowledges evils to be sins against God because they are contrary to Divine laws, and therefore desires to desist from them, the Lord opens the spiritual mind, and enters into the natural mind through affections for truth and good; and He also enters into the rational, and from it disposes in order the things that are contrary to order below it in the natural. This appears to man as a combat and, with those who have indulged much in the delights of evil, as temptation; for there arises grief in the mind (animus) when the order of its thoughts is inverted. Now since the combat is against the things that are in the man himself and that he feels as his own, and no one can fight against himself unless from an interior self and from freedom there, it follows that the internal man then fights against the external, and fights from freedom and forces the external to obedience. This, then, is compelling oneself; and it is clear that this is not contrary to liberty and rationality, but is in accordance with them.

 

Divine Providence

148. Moreover, every man wishes to be free, and to remove not freedom but slavery from himself. Every boy who is under a master wishes to be his own master, and so to be free. It is the same with every man-servant under his master and with every maid under her mistress. Every maiden wishes to leave her father's house and to marry, in order that she may act freely in a home of her own; and every youth who desires to engage in work, or take part in business, or perform the duties of any office, while he serves under others wishes to be released in order that he may be his own master. All those who serve of their own accord by reason of their liberty compel themselves; and when they compel themselves they act from freedom according to reason, but from an interior freedom, from which exterior freedom is looked upon as servitude. This has been stated in order to prove that it is not contrary to rationality and liberty to compel oneself

 

Divine Providence

149. One reason why man does not in like manner desire to come out of spiritual servitude into spiritual liberty is, that he does not know what spiritual slavery is and what spiritual freedom is; he does not possess the truths that teach this; and without truths spiritual slavery is believed to be freedom, and spiritual freedom to be slavery. Another reason is that the religion of the Christian world has closed up the understanding, and faith alone has sealed it; for both of these have placed around themselves like an iron curtain the dogma that theological matters are transcendent and cannot therefore be reached by any exercise of rationality, and that they are for the blind, not for those that see. In this way the truths have been hidden that teach what spiritual liberty is. A third reason is that few examine themselves and see their sins; and he who does not see his sins and desist from them is in the freedom of sin, which is infernal freedom, in itself slavery; and from this viewpoint to see heavenly freedom, which is freedom itself is like seeing day in a fog, or like seeing what comes from the sun above when under a black cloud. Hence it is that it is not known what heavenly freedom is, and that the difference between it and infernal freedom is like the difference between the living and the dead.

 


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