Divine Providence #179

Divine Providence (Dole translation)      

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179. Since foreknowledge of what will happen destroys our essential human nature, our ability to act in freedom and rationally, no one is allowed to know the future. We can, though, draw conclusions about the future on the basis of reason. This is what brings reason and all its powers to life. This is why we do not know what our lot will be after death or know anything that is happening before we are involved in it, because if we did know we would no longer think in our deeper self about what we should do or how we should live in order to reach some particular goal. We would only think with our outer self that this was coming; and this state closes the deeper levels of the mind where, principally, those two abilities of our life dwell, freedom and rationality.

A desire to know the future is innate in many people, but since this desire originates in a love for what is evil, it is taken away from people who believe in divine providence, and they are given a trust that the Lord will take care of their fate. So they do not want to know it in advance, fearing that they might in some way interfere with the divine providence. The Lord teaches us this in several ways in Luke 12:14-48.

[2] There is ample proof in the spiritual world that this is a law of divine providence. Most people who arrive there after death want to know what their lot will be; but they are told that if they have lived well their lot will be in heaven and if they have lived badly it will be in hell. However, since all are afraid of hell, even evil people, they ask what they need to do and what they need to believe in order to get into heaven. They are told that they should do and believe whatever they like; but they should realize that in hell people do not do anything that is good or believe anything that is true, only in heaven: "Ask what is good and what is true and think about it and do it if you can." So we are all left to act in freedom and to act rationally in the spiritual world just the way we are in this world. However, in that world we will behave the way we have behaved here, since in every case our own life stays with us. So does our lot, then, because our life determines our lot.

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