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“ been it's quality in the following ages, which have their " names from Silver, COPPER, and IRON ; and whereas I “ knew, that all who lived well in those ages, are in the “ heavens, I prayed to the Lord, that I might be permitted “ to converse with them, and be instructed. And lo! “ an angel presented himself to me, and said, I am sent “ by the Lord to be thy guide and companion; and first I will lead and accompany thee to those who lived in “ the first age or period, which is called golden : (the “golden age is the same with the age of the most ancient “ church, which is understood by the HEAD OF PURE

GOLD, upon the statue seen by Nebuchadnezzar in a “ dream, Dan. ii. 32, of which we have spoken before.) The angel said, The way to them is arduous, it lies “ through a very thick wood, which no one can pass, “ unless a guide be given him from the Lord. I was in “ the spirit, and prepared myself for the journey, and

turned our faces to the east ; and as we advanced I saw a mountain, whose lieight extended beyond the “ region of the clouds. We passed through a great de

sert, and came into a wood'crouded with various kinds “ of trees, and dark by reason of their growing so close together, of which the angel had previously informed

but the wood was intersected with several narrow “ paths, which the angel said were so many ways lead“ ing astray, and that unless the eyes be opened by the “ Lord, so as to see the olive trees girt about with vine " tendrils, and the steps be directed from one olive tree “ to another, the traveller would wander about till he “ arrived in the regions of Tartarus (or hell]. This " wood is of such a nature, to the end that the passage


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may be guarded; for none but a primeval nation dwells upon

that mountain. After we had entered the wood, our eyes were opened, and we saw here and there olive 6 trees entwined with vines, from which hung bunches grapes

of an azure colour, and the olive trees were “ arranged in perpetual circles; wherefore we made vari

ous circuits as they presented themselves to our view; " and at length we saw a grove of lofty cedars, and “ some eagles upon their branches ; whereupon the angel “ said, Now we are on the mountain not far from it's summit. So we went on, and lo! behind the grove

was a circular plain, where were feeding male and fe“ male lambs, which were representative forms of the

state of innocence and peace of the inhabitants of the " mountain. We passed through this grove, and lo! " there were seen thousands and thousands of tabernacles “ in front, and on each side, in every direction as far as “ the eye could reach. And the angel said, Now we are " in the CAMP, where are the ARMIES OF THE LORD “ Jehovis, for so they call themselves and their habita“tions: these most ancient people, whilst they were in “ the world, dwelt in tabernacles; wherefore now also

they dwell in the same. But I said, Let us bend our way to the south, where the wiser of them dwell, that

we may meet some one, with whom we may enter into “conversation. In going along I saw at a distance three

boys and three girls sitting at the door of their taberna« cle; but as we approached, the boys and girls appeared “ like men and women of a middle stature. And the angel " said, All the inhabitants of this mountain appear at a “ distance like infants, because they are in a state of

66 innocence,

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" innocence, and infancy is the appearance of innocence. “ These men on seeing us ran towards us, and said, " Whence are ye, and how came ye

hither? are not of the faces of this mountain. But the angel " in reply told them, that by permission we had had “ access through the wood, and what was the cause of our "* coining : on hearing which, one of the three men « invited and introduced us into his tabernacle. The

man was clad in a coat of a blue colour, and a waist6 coat of white wool; and his wife had on a purple

gown, with a stomacher under it of fine linen wrought « with needle-work. And whereas my thought was influ« enced by the desire of knowing the [state of] marria.

ges amongst the most ancient people, I looked by turns

on the husband and wife, and observed as it were an “ unity of their souls in their faces; and I said, Ye two are “one : and the man answered, We are one, her life is in

me, and mine in her ; we are two bodies, but one soul; “ the union subsisting between us is like that of the two " tents in the breast, which are called the heart and the “ lungs; she is the very substance of my heart, and I am “ her lungs; but whereas by heart we here mean love, “ and by lungs wisdomn, we understand the latter by the “ former on account of their correspondence ; she is the “s love of my wisdom, and I am the wisdom of her love'; “ hence, as thou saidst, there is an appearance of unity " of souls in our faces; hence it is as impossible for any

one of us here to look at the wife of a companion “ with a lustful eye, as it is to behold the light of our “ heaven from the shades of Tartarus. Hereupon the “ angel said to me, Thou hearest now the speech of 1


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“ these angels, that it is the speech of wisdom, because “ they speak from causes. After this, I saw a great “ light upon the hill in the midst amongst the tabernacles, 66 and I asked, Whence is that light ? and he said, It « is from the sanctuary of the tabernacle of our worship: 6 and I asked whether it was allowed to approach it; and " he said that it was allowed: then I approached, and “saw the TABERNACLE without and within, answering

exactly to the description of the tabernacle, which was " built for the sons of Israel in the desert, the form

whereof was shewn to Moses on mount Sinai, Exod. "xxv. 40; chap. xxvi. 30. I asked further, what there " was within it's sanctuary, whence so great a light pro" ceeded; and he answered, There is a tablet with this

inscription, The COVENANT BETWEEN THE LORD « JEHOVIH AND HEAVEN: he said no more. Then I ques. « tioned them concerning the LORD JEHOVIH, whom they “worship ; and I said, Is he not God the Father, the 56 creator of the universe ? and they replied, He is; but ļ by the Lord Jehovih we understand Jehovah in his “ humanity, for we cannot look at Jehovah in his inmost “ divinity, but only through his humanity: and then " they explained, what they formerly understood, and “ also what they now understand, by the SEED OF THE " WOMAN WHICH SHOULD TREAD UNDER FOOT THE HEAD OF THE SERPENT, Gen. iii. 15, viz.

, that the Lord Jeho“ vih was to come into the world, to redeem and save all « who did believe, and who should hereafter believe on “ him. When we had ended our discourse, a man ran “to his tabernacle, and returned with a pomgranate, “ in which was abundance of seeds of gold; this he pre


“ sented to me, and I brought it away ;, which was a sign

to me, that we had been with those who lived in the

golden age.”-For an account of the heavens of the other churches, in their order, which succeeded the most ancient, see the said treatise on CONJUGIAL LOVE, from n. 76 to 82.

38. The hell of those, who were of the most ancient church, is of all the hells the most dreadful, consisting of such as in the world believed themselves to be as God, according to the deceitful declaration of the serpent, Gen. iii. 5; and deeper in that hell are they, who persuaded themselves that they were really gods, from the fantastical notion that God had transfused his divinity into men, and so that there was no longer a God in the uni

In consequence of that dreadful persuasion, there exhales out of that hell a deadly stench, which infects the adjacent places with such a baleful contagion, that when any one approaches near, he is at first seized with such furious madness, that presently after some convulsive motions he seems to himself to be in the ago. nies of death. I saw a certain spirit near that place lying down as if he was dead, but on being removed thence he recovered. That hell lies in the middle of the southern quarter, surrounded with ramparts, on which stand some [spirits,] who with the voice of a Stentorian trumpet call out [to strangers,] Approach no nearer. I have heard from the angels, who are in the heaven above that hell, that evil spirits appear there like serpents twisted into inextricable folds, as an effect of their vain devices and incantations, by which they allure the simple to assent to their being gods, and to believe that there is no God be



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