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- That pit,
they keep their minds fixed in the falses which they have confirmed, and then they either veil over the truth they have heard with falses, or reject it as a mere sound, or yawn at it and avert themselves; and this in the degree in which they are in the pride of their own erudition ; for pride glues falses together, so that at last they cohere like the concretions formed from the foam of the sea ; therefore the Word is hid from them as a book sealed with seven seals. What their quality is, and what their hell, shall also be described, because it has been permitted me to see it, and to discourse with those who are therein, and also to see the locusts that came out of it. “ which is like the aperture of a furnace, appears in the “southern quarter, and the abyss beneath is of large
extent towards the east; there is light in it, but if light « from heaven be admitted into it, it becomes darkness, “wherefore the pit is closed above. Huts, arched as it
were with brick, appear therein, divided into various “ little cells, in each of which there is a table, with paper " and books lying upon it. Every one sits at his own “ table, who in the world had confirmed justification and “ salvation by faith alone, making charity an act merely “natural-moral, and its works only works of civil life, " whereby men may attain reward in the world; but if " they are done for the sake of salvation, they condemn them, and this severely, because human reason and will
are in them. All who are in this abyss have been “ learned and erudite in the world ; and among them "there are some metaphysicians and scholastics, who are " esteemed there above the rest. When it was granted
me to enter into discourse with them, I recognised
some of them : but this is their lot on their first admis“sion ;—they sit in the foremost cells; but as they con“firm faith by excluding works of charity, they leave " their first habitations, and enter into cells nearer to the “ east, and so on successively till towards the end, where “those are who confirm these tenets from the Word; and “as they then cannot but falsify the Word, their huts “ disappear, and they see themselves in a desert, where“upon what is described above, n. 153, happens to them.
“ There is also an abyss beneath the one just mentioned,
where they are who in like manner have confirmed “ justification and salvation by faith alone, but who by “ themselves in their spirit have denied God, and in their “ hearts have laughed at the holy things of the church; “ here they do nothing but quarrel, tear their garments, “climb upon the tables, and kick and abuse one another; “ and because no one is there permitted to do mischief to “ the body of another, they menace with their faces and “ fists. Filthiness and impurity here prevail ; but these
are not treated of in this place.”
422. “ And he opened the bottomless pit, and there arose a smoke out of the pit as the smoke of a great furnace,” signifies, the falses of the concupiscences of the natural man springing forth from their evil loves. By the bottomless pit, is signified the hell above described, n. 421 ; by the smoke from thence, are signified the falses from concupiscences; and because the smoke as of a great furnace is mentioned, the falses of concupiscences springing forth from evil loves are understood, for fire signifies love, n. 468; and the fire of hell, evil love, n. 490. A great furnace has a like signification, because it smokes from fire. Infernal spirits are not in any material fire, but in spiritual fire, which is their love; therefore they do not feel
any other fire ; on which subject see the work on Heaven and Hell, n. 134, 566–575. All love, in the spiritual world, when it is excited, appears at a distance as fire,—within the hells, as red-hot fire, and without, as the smoke of a fire, or as the smoke of a furnace. The falses of the concupiscences springing forth from evil loves, are also described as smoke from a fire and from a furnace, in other parts of the Word, as in these passages : Abraham “looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah,—and beheld, and lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace," Gen. xix. 28. 6. The sun went down, and it was dark, and behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp, that passed between those pieces,” Gen. xv. 17. “And now they sin, more and more,
therefore they shall be as the smoke out of the chimney," Hosea xiii. 2, 3. “But the wicked shall perish, into smoke shall
they consume away," Psalm xxxvii. 20.
" And I will show wonders in the heavens, and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke," Joel ii. 30. " And shall cast them into a furnace of fire, there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth," Matt. xiii. 41, 42, 49, 51; and in other places.
423. “And the sun and the air were darkened, by reason of the smoke of the pit," signifies, that thereby the light of truth was turned into thick darkness. By the sun and the air is here signified the light of truth, for by the sun is signified love, and by the light proceeding from it, divine truth; wherefore when it is said that the sun was darkened, and at the same time the air, it signifies that divine truth had become thick darkness: that this was from the falses of concupiscences, is signified by its being effected by the smoke of the pit.
424. “And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth,” signifies, that from them were derived falses. to the extreme or lowest degrees, such as prevail with those who have become sensual, and see and judge of all things from their senses and from the fallacies thereof. They are called falses in the extreme or lowest degrees, which occupy the extreme or lowest principles of man's life, and are termed sensual, concerning which we shall speak presently; these are signified by locusts, in the Word: but it is to be observed, that they did not appear like the locusts of the field, which leap about and lay waste meadows and corn fields, but like pigmies or little men, which is evident also from their description, in that they had crowns on their heads, and faces like men, hair like women, teeth like lions, breast-plates of iron, and a king over them,—the angel of the bottoinless pit. That little men were also called locusts by the ancients, may be concluded from this
passage : The spies who were sent to search the land of Canaan, said,
66 And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, and we were in their eyes as locusts," Numb. xiii. 33. " It is Jehovah that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as locusts," Isaiah xl. 22. But as falses in extreme or lowest principles, such as prevail among them,
are signified by locusts in the Word, therefore they are called locusts, as also crowned and commanders, in Nahum: “There shall the fire devour thee, it shall eat thee up like the canker-worm; make thyself many as the canker-worm, make thyself many as the locusts; thy crowned are as the locusts, and thy captains as the locust of locusts,” iii, 15, 16, 17. , It is in consequence of falses in extreme or lowest principles consuming the truths and goods of the church, as they spring up in man, that they are signified by locusts, which consume the grass and herb of the field, as may be evident from these passages : “Thou shalt carry much seed out into the field, for the locust shall consume it,” Deut. xxviii. 38. “That which the palmer-worm bath left hath the locust eaten, and that which the locust hath left hath the, canker-worm eaten, and that which the canker-worm bath left hath the caterpillar eaten," Joel. i. 4, 5. 66 And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the canker-worm, the caterpillar, and the palmer-worm have eaten," Joel ïi. 24, 25. The same is signified by the locusts in Egypt, concerning which it is thus written in Moses: “And Moses stretched forth his rod over the land of Egypt, and the east wind brought the locusts. And the locusts went up over all the land of Egypt ;-before them there were no such locusts,—and they did eat every herb of the land :” and afterwards, “ Moses stretched forth his rod, and the locusts were cast into the red sea,” Exod. x. 13, and subsequent verses; and in David: He gave their produce to the caterpillar, and their labor to the locust, Psalm cv. 34, 35. By the miracles in Egypt is described the vastation of the church; and by this miracle, vastațion by falses in extreme or lowest principles; and the extreme or lowest principles of man's life, when the interiors on which they depend are closed, are infernal; for this reason it is that it is said the locusts were cast into the red sea, by which is signified hell.
As few at this day know what is meant by the sensual principle, and what the quality of the sensual man is; and as locusts signify such, the following extracts are therefore adduced concerning it from the Arcana Coelestia.
“ That the sensual principle is the ultimate of the life of “man's mind, adhering and cohering to his five bodily “senses, n. 5077, 5767, 9121, 9216, 9331, 9730. That " he is called a sensual man who judges of all things by “his bodily senses, and who believes nothing but what he
can see with his eyes, and touch with his hands; saying “ that these are something, and rejecting the rest, n. 5094,
That the interiors of his mind, which see from “ the light of heaven, are closed, so that he sees nothing “of truth there, which is of heaven and the church, n.
6564, 6844, 6845. That such a man thinks in extreme " or lowest principles, and not interiorly from any spiritual light, n. 5089, 5094, 5564, 7693. In short, that they
are in a dense natural light, n. 6201, 6310, 6464, 6844, “6845, 6612, 6614, 6622, 6524. That thence interiorly
they are against the things which are of heaven and the “church, but that exteriorly they can speak in favor of " them, and ardently, according to the dominion they ex“ ercise by means of them, n. 6201, 6316, 6844, 6845, “ 6948, 6949. That the learned and erudite, who have “ confirmed themselves deeply in falses, and still more “ they who have confirmed themselves against the truths “ of the Word, are sensual above all others, n. 6316. " That sensual men reason acutely and subtilely, because “ their thought is so near their speech that it is almost in “ it, and as it were in their lips, and because they place “all intelligence in speech from memory only; also that
some of them can dextrously confirm falses, and that " after confirmation they believe them to be truths, n. “ 195, 196, 5700, 10236. But that they reason and “confirm things from the fallacies of the senses, by which “the vulgar are captivated and persuaded, n. 5084, 6948, « 6949, 7693. That sensual men are more cunning and "malicious than others, n. 7693, 10236. That the
avaricious, adulterers, and the voluptuous and deceitful, “are especially sensual, although in the eyes of the world
they do not appear so, n. 6310. That the interiors of “ their minds are filthy and unclean, n. 6201. That by “these they communicate with the hells, n. 6311. That
they who are in the hells are sensual, and the more so