The Third Round: Logopraxis Isn’t About Becoming a Better Person

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From the work, Arcana Coelestia 5854.2

[2] The Lord could through angels lead man into good ends by omnipotent force; but this would be to take away the man’s life, for his life consists in entirely contrary loves. Therefore the Divine law is inviolable, that man shall be in freedom, and that good and truth, or charity and faith, shall be implanted in his freedom, and by no means in compulsion; because what is received in a state of compulsion does not remain, but is dissipated. For to compel a man is not to insinuate into his will, because it is then the will of another from which he acts; and therefore when he returns to his own will, that is, to his own freedom, this is rooted out. The Lord therefore rules man through his freedom, and as far as possible withholds him from the freedom of thinking and willing evil; for unless man were withheld by the Lord, he would be continually plunging into the deepest hell.

From the work, Divine Providence 183

183. That if the Divine providence and its operation were clearly seen by man he would deny God does not appear probable; for it would seem that if it were clearly seen by any one he could not but acknowledge it, and thus acknowledge God; yet the contrary is the truth. The Divine providence never acts in accord with the will’s love in man, but constantly against it; since man, because of his hereditary evil, is always panting for the lowest hell; but the Lord by His providence is continually leading and drawing him away from it, first to a milder hell, then out of hell, and finally to Himself in heaven. This operation of the Divine providence is perpetual. Consequently if man clearly saw or felt this drawing or leading away he would grow angry and would regard God as his enemy, and from the evil of his selfhood (proprium) would deny God. Consequently, lest this be known to man he is kept in a state of freedom from which he knows no otherwise than that he leads himself.

From the work, Arcana Coelestia 4394

When a man is in interior truths in faith and in life, he is in the Lord’s kingdom, and in a state of tranquillity, and then looks at exterior things as one who looks from a high hill upon a tempestuous sea.

From the work Arcana Coelestia 9128.2, 3

A man sees in himself whether what he thinks and wills, and consequently what he says and does, is good or evil, and consequently whether it is true or false. This is quite impossible unless he sees from within. Seeing from within is seeing from the sight of the internal man in the external. The case is the same as with the sight of the eye: the eye cannot see the things which are within it, but only those which are outside of it. From this then it is that a man sees the good and the evil that are in himself. Nevertheless one man sees this better than another, and some do not see it at all. They who see it, are they who have received from the Lord the life of faith and charity, for this life is the internal life, or the life of the internal man. Such persons, being from faith in truth, and from charity in good, can see the evils and falsities in themselves; for evil can be seen from good, and falsity from truth; but not contrariwise. The reason is that good and truth are in heaven, and in its light; whereas evil and falsity are in hell, and in its darkness. From this it is evident that those who are in evil and thence in falsity cannot see the good and truth, nor even the evil and falsity, which are in themselves, consequently neither can they see from within.

[3] But be it known that to see from within is to see from the Lord; for it is the same with sight as with everything that exists, in that nothing exists from itself, but from that which is prior to or higher than itself, thus finally from the First and Highest. The First and Highest is the Lord. He who apprehends this can also apprehend that everything of life with man is from the Lord; and that as charity and faith constitute the veriest life of man, everything of charity, and everything of faith, are from the Lord. He who excels others in the gift of thought and perception, can from this also apprehend that the Lord sees each and all things-even the most minute-that are with man. But evil and falsity do not come forth from what is higher than themselves; but from what is lower. Consequently they do not come forth from the Lord, but from the world; for the Lord is above, and the world is beneath. Wherefore with those who are in evil and thence in falsity, the internal man is closed above and open beneath. From this it is that they see all things upside down; the world as everything, and heaven as nothing. It is also for this reason that before the angels they appear upside down; with the feet upward, and the head downward. Such are all in hell.

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