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3796. 'And so it was, when Jacob saw Rachel the daughter of Laban his mother's brother' means an acknowledgement of the affection for that truth as to its origin. This is clear from the meaning of 'seeing' here as acknowledging, as is evident from the train of thought, and from the representation of 'Rachel' as the affection for interior truth, dealt with above in 3793. The expression 'the daughter of Laban his mother's brother' embodies the origin of that affection; that is to say, it came from a parallel good which had been joined in a brotherly relationship to rational truth represented by 'Rebekah, Jacob's mother'.

[2] As regards affections for truth and good, genuine affections for truth and good which are perceived by a person all have a Divine origin since they come from the Lord. But as they come down they branch off into various and different streams where they form new origins for themselves. For as they flow into affections which are not genuine but spurious, and into affections for evil and falsity present with a person, so they become varied. Affections which often have a similar outward appearance to genuine ones present themselves, but these are nevertheless not genuine inwardly. The only way to establish their true identity is to discover the end they have in view. If that end is selfish or worldly those affections are not genuine. But if the end is the good of the neighbour, the good of the community, the good of the country, and more still if it is the good of the Church and the good of the Lord's kingdom, they are genuine, for in that case the Lord is their end, since the Lord is within those varieties of good.

[3] But it is the mark of someone wise to be aware of which ends are present in himself. Sometimes it does seem as though his ends are selfish when in fact they are not, for the human being is such that in everything he considers how it affects himself. This he does regularly and habitually. But if anyone wishes to know the ends he himself has in view he has merely to take note of his feeling of delight - whether it is on account of his receiving praise and glory, or whether it is on account of his performing some unselfish service. If it is the latter delight which he feels, genuine affection is present in him. He ought also to take note of the varying states he passes through, for those states cause his feelings to vary considerably. A person is able to find these things out in himself, but not in others, for the ends in view to anyone's affection are known to the Lord alone. This is why the Lord said,

Do not judge, lest you are judged; do not condemn, lest you are condemned. Luke 6:37.

For a thousand people may apparently share the same affection for truth and goodness, and yet the affection in each of them may have a different origin, that is, each may have a different end in view.

[4] The reason the end makes the affection what it is - that is to say, genuine, spurious, or false - is that the end is the person's actual life. Indeed a person has as his end in view that which constitutes his life, or what amounts to the same, his love. When the good of the neighbour, the common good, the good of the Church and of the Lord's kingdom is the end in view, a person's soul is in the Lord's kingdom and so abides with the Lord. For the Lord's kingdom is nothing else than a kingdom of ends and purposes directed towards the good of the human race, 3645. Angels themselves present with a person are nowhere else than within his ends in view. To the extent that someone's end in view is such as that which exists in the Lord's kingdom, angels take delight in him and join themselves to him as a brother. But to the extent a person's end is himself, angels depart and evil spirits from hell draw near, for in hell no other end in view reigns. From these considerations one may see how important it is to find out and to know where one's affections originate; these can be known from nothing else than one's end in view.

(Verweise: Genesis 29:9-11)

  
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Eingegangene Referenzen:

Arcana Coelestia 3839, 4060, 7231, 8238, 10705

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 62, 121


   Swedenborg Forschungsinstrumente

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How to Tell if Your Desires Are Real or Fake

In this episode, we’re exploring passages from Swedenborg’s "Secrets of Heaven ", number 3796:2-4.


Thanks to the Swedenborg Society for the permission to use this translation.

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3839. 'And he said to Laban, What is this you have done to me?' means indignation. This is clear from the affectional content of these words and of those that follow; for as accords with the sequence of events in this historical narrative it is the feeling of indignation that is expressed in these words. There are two elements which constitute the internal sense of the Word - affections and subject-matter. The affections lying within expressions of the Word are not visible to man but are concealed there inmostly. Nor can they be visible since man during his lifetime is governed by worldly and bodily affections, which have nothing in common with the affections present in the internal sense of the Word. That sense contains affections which belong to spiritual and celestial love, affections which mankind is that much less capable of perceiving because those in whom they exist are few, and the few in whom they do exist are for the most part simple people who have no ability to reflect on affections. All others do not even know what genuine affection is. These affections that belong to celestial and spiritual love manifest themselves in charity towards the neighbour and in love to God. Those in whom such affections do not exist do not believe that they are anything at all, when in fact those affections fill the whole of heaven, doing so in varying ways beyond description. These are the affections, together with the variations of them, which have been stored away in the internal sense of the Word, residing not only in every sentence but also in every expression, indeed in every detail. And they reveal themselves to angels when the Word is read by people in whom simple good and at the same time innocence are present; and they reveal themselves, as has been stated, in ways unendingly various.

[2] There are principally two kinds of affections which shine out of the Word for angels to see - affections for truth and affections for good. Affections for truth reveal themselves to spiritual angels, affections for good to celestial angels. The latter, namely affections for good, which belong to love to the Lord, are altogether indescribable to man and are consequently incomprehensible too. But affections for truth, which belong to mutual love, are to some extent comprehensible in their most general aspects, though only to people in whom mutual love is present. And even those general aspects are not comprehensible to them from any internal perception except one that is obscure.

[3] Take for example the affection or feeling of indignation referred to in this verse. Anyone who does not know what charitable affection is, for the reason that this is not present in him, can have no other idea of what it is but the kind of indignation that is aroused in a person when some wrong is done to him - which in reality is a feeling of anger. But that kind of indignation does not exist with angels but an altogether different kind, which is not the expression of anger but of zeal, and holds nothing evil in it at all. This indignation is as far away from hatred, or revenge, or repaying evil with evil, as heaven is from hell; for it wells up out of good. But the nature of that indignation, as has been stated, cannot be expressed by any words. The situation is similar with all other affections which originate in good and truth and which belong to good and truth.

[4] This is also evident from the fact that angels are concerned solely with ends in view, and with the purposes engendered by those ends, 1317, 1645, 3645. Ends in view are nothing else than loves or affections, 1317, 1568, 1571, 1909, 3425, 3796; for what a person loves he has as his end in view. This being so, angels are acquainted with the affections enclosed in the subject-matter of the Word; and this entails every variation according to the types of affections present in the angels. From this it becomes quite clear how holy the Word is, for Divine love, that is, love coming from the Divine, has holiness within it, and so therefore do the subjects within the Word.

  
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Eingegangene Referenzen:

Arcana Coelestia 3841, 3857, 4060, 7231

The New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 121


   Swedenborg Forschungsinstrumente


Thanks to the Swedenborg Society for the permission to use this translation.


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