THE LOINS >> Conjugial Love >> Marriage >> Celestial Heaven
In a quiet dream I saw some trees planted in a wooden receptacle, one of which was tall, another lower, and two were small. The lower tree delighted me very greatly, and all the while a very pleasant rest, such as I cannot express, affected my mind. On awaking from sleep I conversed with those who induced the dream. They were angelic spirits (see n. 1977, 1979), and they told me what was signified by what I had seen-that it was conjugial love, the tall tree signifying the husband, the lower tree the wife, and the two small ones the children. They told me further that the very pleasant rest which affected my mind indicated what pleasantness of peace those have in the other life who have lived in genuine conjugial love. They added that such are those who belong to the province of the thighs next above the knees, and that those who are in a still more pleasant state belong to the province of the loins. It was also shown that this province communicates through the feet with the soles and the heels. That this is so, is plain from that great nerve in the thigh which sends forth its branches not only through the loins to the members of generation (which are the organs of conjugial love), but also through the feet to the soles and the heels. It was also then discovered what is meant in the Word by the hollow and the nerve of the thigh which was put out of joint in Jacob, when he wrestled with the angel (Gen. 32:25, 31, 32; see n. 4280, 4281, 4314-4317).
 I afterward saw a great dog, such as that called Cerberus by ancient writers, with a frightful open mouth; and I was told that such a dog signifies a guard to prevent man's passing over from heavenly conjugial love to the love of adultery, which is infernal; for heavenly conjugial love exists when a man together with his wife, whom he loves most tenderly, and with his children, lives content in the Lord. From this he has in this world an inward pleasantness, and in the other life heavenly joy; but when he passes from this love into the opposite, and finds in this a delight that seems to him heavenly, although it is infernal, then such a dog is presented as a guard lest there should be a communication between these opposite delights. [AC5051]
The Lord instills conjugial love through the inmost heaven, the angels of which are in peace beyond all others. Peace in the heavens is comparatively like springtime in the world, which renders all things joyous, for in its origin peace is the celestial itself. The angels who are in the inmost heaven are the wisest of all, and from their innocence they appear to others as infants, for they love infants much more than do their fathers and mothers. They are present with infants in the womb, and through them the Lord cares for the feeding and full development of the infants therein; thus they have charge over those who are with child. [AC5052]
There are heavenly societies to which correspond all and each of the members and organs allotted to generation in both sexes. These societies are distinct from others, just as this province in man is quite distinct and separate from the rest. The reason why these societies are celestial, is that conjugial love is the fundamental love of all loves (n. 686, 2733, 2737, 2738). It also excels the rest in use, and consequently in delight; for marriages are the nurseries of the whole human race, and are also the nurseries of the Lord's heavenly kingdom; for heaven is from the human race. [AC 5053]
They who have loved infants most tenderly, as for instance such mothers, are in the province of the womb and the organs round about, namely, in the province of the neck of the womb and of the ovaries; and they who are there are in a life most sweet and soft, and are in heavenly joy beyond others. [AC 5054]
But what and of what quality those heavenly societies are which belong to the several organs of generation, it has not been given me to know; for they are too interior to be comprehended by anyone who is in a lower sphere. They bear relation to the uses of these organs, which uses are hidden, and are far from ken, for the reason (which also is of Providence) that such things, in themselves most heavenly, may not suffer injury by filthy thoughts of lasciviousness, of whoredom, and of adultery, which are excited in very many persons at the bare mention of these organs. For this reason I may relate some of the more remote things that I have seen. [AC 5055]
A certain spirit from another earth was with me (of which spirits from other earths of the Lord's Divine mercy I shall speak elsewhere), and he anxiously begged me to intercede for him, that he might come into heaven. He said that he was not aware of having done what is evil, except that he had rebuked the inhabitants of that earth (for there are spirits who chide and chastise those who do not live rightly, who also will be described when I speak of the inhabitants of other earths). He added that after chiding he instructed them. He then talked with as it were a broken voice, and he could move one to pity. But I could only reply that I could give him no help, and that admission into heaven is of the Lord alone, but that if worthy he might hope. He was then sent back among upright spirits from his own earth; but these said that he could not be in their company, because he was not such as they were. Yet because with intense longing he importuned to be let into heaven, he was sent into a society of upright spirits of this earth; but these also said that he could not remain with them. In the light of heaven he was of a black color; but he himself said that he was not of a black, but of a murrhine color.
 I was told that they are such in the beginning who are afterward received among those who constitute the province of the seminal vesicles; for in these vesicles is collected the semen with its proper serum with which it is combined and thereby rendered fit, after it has been emitted, to be resolved in the neck of the womb, and thus to be serviceable for conception; and there is in such a substance an endeavor and as it were a longing to perform a use, thus to put off the serum with which it is clothed. Something similar showed itself in this spirit. He came again to me, but in vile clothing, and said that he was burning to come into heaven, and that he now perceived that he was fit for it. I was given to tell him that perhaps this was an indication that he would soon be received. He was then told by angels to cast off his garment; and in his longing he cast it off so quickly that scarcely anything could be quicker. By this was represented the nature of the ardent desires of those who are in the province to which the seminal vesicles correspond. [AC 5056]
When those have approached me who have lived in what is contrary to conjugial love-that is, in adulteries-they always injected pain in the loins, more or less severe according to the life of adulteries which they had lived; from which influx also it has been evident that the loins correspond to conjugial love. The hell of these is under the hinder part of the loins, beneath the buttocks, where they dwell in filth and excrements; and these things are delightful to them because in the spiritual world they are in correspondence with these pleasures. But more will be said about these spirits, when of the Lord's Divine mercy I come to speak of the hells in general and in particular. [AC5059]
Who they are that correspond to the testicles, was in like manner evident to me from those who are in what is contrary to conjugial love, and who inflict pain on the testicles; for when societies operate they act upon those parts and those members of the body to which they correspond-heavenly societies by a gentle, sweet, delightful influx; and infernal ones, who are in what is contrary, by a severe and painful influx. But their influx is perceived by those only whose interiors have been opened, and who thereby have received perceptible communication with the spiritual world. They who are in what is contrary to conjugial love and who inflict pain on the testicles, are those who ensnare by love, friendship, and kind offices. When such spirits approached me they desired to speak with me in private, being exceedingly fearful lest anyone should be present, for this had been their character in the life of the body; and being such then, they are such in the other life also, because everyone's life remains with him.
 There arose from the region about Gehenna somewhat aerial and inconspicuous. It was a company of such spirits, but though there were many in it, it afterward appeared to me as only one spirit hampered with bandages, which however he seemed to himself to remove, whereby was signified that they desired to remove obstacles; for in such a manner do the thoughts and efforts of the mind appear representatively in the world of spirits, and when they appear, it is instantly perceived what they signify. Afterward it seemed as if there came forth from his body a little snow-white spirit, who drew near to me, by which was represented their thought and intention-that they desired to assume a state of innocence, so that no one might suspect their real character. When he came to me, he let himself down toward the loins, and seemed to wind himself as it were about both of them, whereby was represented that they desired to exhibit themselves in chaste conjugial love; afterward he seemed to wind himself about the feet in spiral coils, whereby was represented that they desired to insinuate themselves by such things as are delightful in nature. At last that little spirit became almost invisible, by which was represented that they desire to lie wholly concealed.
 I was told by angels that such instilling belongs to those who seek to ensnare in conjugial love, that is to say, those who in the world have instilled themselves with the end to commit adultery with wives, by speaking chastely and sanely about conjugial love, by caressing the children, by praising the husband in every possible way, so as to be believed to be friendly, chaste, and innocent, when yet they are deceitful adulterers. Their quality was also shown me, for after these things had been done, that little snow-white spirit became visible, and appeared dusky and very black, and also very deformed; and he was cast out into his hell, which was deep under the middle part of the loins. There they dwell in the foulest excrements; and they are also among the robbers there who bear relation to the general involuntary sense (n. 4327). I afterward conversed with such spirits, and they were surprised that anyone should make adultery a matter of conscience, that is, that from conscience he would not lie with another's wife when allowed; and when I talked with them about conscience, they denied that anyone has conscience. I was told that such spirits are for the most part from Christendom, and seldom from other parts of the world. [AC5060]
How profane and thus how much to be detested adulteries are can be seen from the holiness of marriage. All things in the human body, from the head to the heel of the foot, both interior and exterior, correspond to the heavens, and in consequence man is a heaven in its least form, and also angels and spirits are in form perfectly human, for they are forms of heaven. All the members devoted to generation in both sexes, especially the womb, correspond to societies of the third or inmost heaven, and for the reason that love truly conjugial is derived from the Lord's love for the church, and from the love of good and truth which is the love of the angels of the third heaven; therefore conjugial love, which descends therefrom as the love of the heavens, is innocence, which is the very being [esse] of every good in the heavens. And for this reason embryos in the womb are in a state of peace, and after birth infants are in a state of innocence; so, too, is the mother in relation to them.
 As this is the correspondence of the genital organs of both sexes, it is evident that from creation they are holy, and therefore they are devoted solely to chaste and pure conjugial love, and are not to be profaned by the unchaste and impure love of adultery, by which man converts the heaven with himself into hell; for as the love of marriage corresponds to the love of the highest heaven, which is love to the Lord from the Lord, so the love of adultery corresponds to the love of the lowest hell. The love of marriage is so holy and heavenly because it has its beginning in the inmosts of man from the Lord Himself, and it descends according to order to the ultimates of the body, and thus fills the whole man with heavenly love and brings him into a form of the Divine love, which is the form of heaven, and is an image of the Lord, as has been said above. But the love of adultery has its beginning in the ultimates of man from an impure lascivious fire there, and thus, contrary to order, penetrates towards the interiors, always into the things that are man's own [proprium], which are nothing but evil, and brings these into a form of hell, which is an image of the devil. Therefore a man who loves adultery and turns away from marriage is in form a devil.
 As the organs of generation in each sex correspond to the societies of the third heaven, and the love of a marriage pair corresponds to the love of good and truth, so those organs and that love correspond to the Word. The reason is that the Word is the Divine truth united to the Divine good proceeding from the Lord; and this is why the Lord is called "the Word," also why in every particular of the Word there is a marriage of good and truth, or a heavenly marriage. That there is such a correspondence is an arcanum not yet known in the world, but it has been made evident and proved to me by much experience. From this also it is clear how holy and heavenly marriages are in themselves, and how profane and diabolical adulteries are. And for this reason adulterers make no account of Divine truths and thus of the Word, and if they were to speak from the heart they would even blaspheme the holy things that are in the Word. This they do when they have become spirits after death, for every spirit is compelled to speak from the heart that his interior thoughts may be revealed. [AE985]
Author: EMANUEL. SWEDENBORG (1688-1772)