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there converse with one another from their own evil affection. The affection contained in their discourse thence enters the inan by influx; and if it is opposed to the man's affection, he experiences melancholy, sadness, and anxiety; whereas if it agrees with his affection, he becomes gay and cheerful. Hence was made manifest to me the ori. gin of the persuasion entertained by some who do not know what conscience is, by reason that they have none, when they attribute its pangs to a disordered state of the stomach.” Of the killling and eating the flesh of animals, he writes thus in the Arcana Cælestia, n. 1002. * Eating the flesh of animals, considered in itself, is something profane; for the people of the most ancient time on no account ate the flesh of any beast or fowl, but only grain, especially bread made of wheat, also the fruits of trees, pulse, milk, and what is produced from milk, as butter. To kill animals and to eat their flesh, was to them unlawful, and seemed as something bestial; and they were content with the uses and services which they rendered, as appears also from Genesis 1. 29, 30. But in succeeding times, when man began to grow fierce as a beast, yea fiercer, then first they began to kill ani. mals, and to eat their flesh. And because man was such, this was permitted, and at this day also is permitted ; and so far as a man does it from conscience, so far is it lawful, for his conscience is formed of all those things which he thinks to be true, and so thinks to be law. ful: wherefore also, at this day, no one is by any means condemned for this, that he eats fiesh.”
Swedenborg, took snuff, as was the custom in his day. Some of his manuscripts yet bear traces of the dingy powder.
Shearsmith gives the same account of Swedenborg's habits of sleep, as his gardener at Stockholm. He had no regard for times and seasons, days or nights, only taking rest as he felt disposed. This was naturally to be expected, considering the peculiarities of his seership. At first, Shearsmith was greatly alarmed, by reason of his talking day and night. Sometimes he would be writing, and then he would be, as it were, holding a conversation with several persons. But as Swedenborg spoke in a language Shearsmith did not understand, he could make nothing of it. Shearsmith was nevertheless well pleased with his lodger. His servant told Mr Peckitt, after Swedenborg's death,
“ he was a good-natured man, and that he was a blessing to the house, for they had harmony and good business whilst he was with them.” A short time before his death, he lay for some weeks in a trance, without any sustenance.
Swedenborg's pension preserved him from all pecuniary cares. Yet in his Diary we read, “I have now been for thirty-three months in a state in which my mind is withdrawn from bodily affairs, and hence can be present in the societies of the spiritual and celestial. Yet whenever I am intent upon worldly matters, or have cares and desires
about money, (such as cansed me to write a letter to-day,) I lapse into a bodily state; and the spirits, as they inform me, cannot speak with me, but say they are in a manner absent. This shows me that spirits cannot speak with a man who dwells upon worldly and bodily cares ; for the things of his body draw down his ideas, and drown them in the body.- March 4, 1748.” This experience is worthy of record. Most of us, in our own way, know the truth of it, from heart experi
Whatever his motives were, he would receive back no proceeds from the sale of his theological works, but dedicated the whole to religious subscriptions. To beggars he seldom gave anything. In bis writings, he in several places protests against the sham charity which satisfies itself by mere alms-giving. He tells us that habitual beggars lead vicions and impious lives, and that to give them money is rather to curse than to bless them.
Swedenborg did not lend money ; for that, he said, is the way to lose it; besides, as he remarks, he required it nearly all to pay the expenses of his travelling and printing.
In his later years, Swedenborg had no library but his Bible, in various editions, and his own manuscripts. What need had he of the books of men, when he knew the heavens,—and the gloritied authors of earth, in states of wisdom they never dreamed of here?
Swedenborg seldom went to church ; for, as he said, he "had no peace in the church, on account of spirits, who contradicted what the preacher said, especially when he spoke of Three Persons in the Godhead, which amounted in reality to three gods.”
Swedenborg's long and arduous labours on earth were now ended. Let us approach his death-bed with reverence, and observe how a good man can die.
Last Days on Earth. On Christmas Eve, 1771, a stroke of apoplexy deprived Swedenborg of his speech, and lamed one side. He lay afterwards in a lethargic state for more than three weeks, taking no sustenance beyond a little tea without milk, and cold water occasionally, and once a little currant jelly. At the end of that time, he recovered his speech and health somewhat, and ate and drank as usual. Mr Hartley and Dr Messiter at this time visited him, and asking him if he was comforted with the society of angels, as before; he answered that he was. They then asked him to declare whether all that he had written was strictly true, or whether any part or parts were to be excepted. “I have written,” answered Swedenborg, with a degree of warmth,
nothing but the truth, as you will have more and more confirmed to you all the days of your life, provided you keep close to the Lord, and faithfully serve Him alone, by shunning evils of all kinds as sins against Him, and diligeutly searching His Word, which, from beginning to end, bears incontestable witness to the truth of the doctrines I have delivered to the world.”
At this time Swedenborg seemed to love privacy, and saw but little company. His old friend Springer, the Swedish Consul in London, called upon him a week or two before his decease. Springer asked him when he believed that the New Jerusalem, or the New Church of the Lord, would be manifested, and if this manifestation would take place in the four quarters of the world. Swedenborg replied,
No mortal can declare the time, no, not even the celestial angels; it is known solely to the Lord. Read the Revelation, chapter 21. 2, and Zechariah, chapter 14. 9, and you will find, that it is not to be doubted that the New Jerusalem, mentioned in the Apocalypse, which denotes a new and purer state of the Christian Church, than has hitherto existed, will manifest itself to all the earth.”
About this time, says Springer, Swedenborg told him that his spiritual sight was withdrawn, after he had been favoured with it for so long a course of years. This, of which the world knew nothing, and for which it cared nothing, it was the greatest tribulation to him to lose. He could not endure the blindness, but cried ont repeatedly, “O! my God, hast thou then forsaken thy servant at last ? ” continued for several days in this condition, but it was the last of his trials : he recovered his precious sight, and was happy.
About this time Swedenborg wrote a note, in Latin, to the Rev. John Wesley, to the following effect :
Great Bath street, Cold Bath Fields,
“February, 1772. “Sir,—I have been informed in the world of spirits, that you have a strong desire to converse with me. I shall be happy to see you, if you will favour me with visit.
“I am, Sir, your humble servant,
“Emanuel Swedenborg." When the note was handed to Mr Wesley, he was in company with some of his preachers, arranging their preaching circuits for the year. Wesley read the note aloud, and frankly confessed that he had been strongly actuated by a desire to meet Swedenborg, but he had revealed his wish to no one. He wrote for answer, that he was then occupied in preparing for a six months' journey, but would wait upon Swedenborg on his return to London. Swedenborg, in reply, stated that the proposed visit would be too late, as he, Swedenborg, should go into the world of spirits on the 29th day of the next month, March, never more to return. Wesley did not call, and they never met. Had he been wise, he would, in spite of engagements, have embraced this
opportunity of conversing with that marvellous man, after an invitation of such a character. Had they met, it is probable that Metho. dism would have been a different thing from what it is. But let us believe that all such seeming accidents are overruled for the best.
The authority for this anecdote is the Rev. Samuel Smith, a Methodist preacher, who was present when Wesley received Swedenborg's letter. It excited his curiosity to know something of the writings of so remarkable a man; and the result was, a firm conviction of the rationality and truth of the heavenly doctrines promulgated in them, and a zealous activity in their diffusion, throughout the remainder of his life.
Mr Bergstrom, the landlord of the King's Arms tavern in Wellclose square, at whose house Swedenborg had once lodged, called to see him in his last days. Swedenborg told him, that since it had pleased the Lord to take away the use of his arm by palsy, his body was good for nothing but to be put under ground. Mr Bergstrom asked him whether he would take the Sacrament. Somebody present at the time proposed sending for the Rev. Mr Mathesius, a minister of the Swedish Church. Swedenborg at once declined having that gentleman, for he had set abroad a report that Swedenborg was out of his senses. (Mathesius himself, in later years, went ont of his senses.) The Rev. Arvid Ferelius, another Swedish clergyman, with whom Swedenborg was on the best terms, and who had visited him frequently in his illness, was then sent for. Ferelius observed to him, that “ as many persons thought he had endeavoured only to make himself a name, or acquire celebrity in the world, by the publication of his new theological system, he should now be ready, in order to show justice to the world, to recant either the whole or a part of what he had written, since he had now nothing more to expect from the world which he was so soon to leave for ever.” Upon hearing these words, Swedenborg raised himself half upright in his bed, and placing his sound hand upon his breast, said, with great zeal and emphasis, “As true as you see me before you, so true is everything which I have written. I could say more, were I permitted. When you come into eternity, you will see all things as I have stated and described them; and we shall have much discourse about them with each other.” Ferelius then asked him if he would take the Lord's Holy Supper. He replied, “ You mean well, but I, being a member of the other world, do not need it. However, to show the connection and union between the church in heaven and the church on earth, I will gladly take it.” He then asked Ferelius if he had read his views on the Sacrament. Before administering the Sacrament, Ferelius inquired whether he confessed himself to be a sinner. “ Certainly,” said Swedenborg, “ so long as I carry abont with me this sinful body." With deep and affecting devotion, with folded hands, and with his head uncovered, he confessed his own unworthiness, and received the
Holy Supper. He then presented Ferelius with a copy of his Arcana Cælestia, expressing his gratitude to him for his kind attentions.
He knew that his end was near. He told the people of the bouse on what day he should die, and Shearsmith's servant remarked, he was as pleased as I should have been, if I was going to have a holiday, or going to some merry-making."
His faculties were clear to the last. On Sunday, the 29th day of March, 1772, hearing the clock strike, he asked his landlady and her maid, who were both sitting at his bed-side, what o'clock it was; and upon being answered it was five o'clock, he said, “It is well; I thank you; God bless you : " and in a little moment after, he gently departed. He was then 84 years, 8 weeks, and five days, old.
His body was taken to the undertaker’s, where it lay in state; and then was, on the 5th day of April, deposited in three coffins, in the vault of the Swedish Church, in Prince's square, Radcliffe Highway, with all the ceremonies of the Lutheran faith,—the service being performed by the Rev. Arvid Ferelius.
There the body still lies. No stone, or inscription marks the spot. Swedenborg, of all men, least requires monumental commemoration ; every year enshrines his memory in increasing numbers of grateful hearts ;—grateful to him, as a medium, whereby the Infinite Wisdom and Goodness might reach its end in blessing mankind in a Second Advent of spiritual truth, and leading them within the gates of the Holy City, the New Jerusalem.
Progress of the New Church.
Swedenborg widely distributed his works during his lifetime, presenting copies to libraries and to distinguished and learned persons everywhere. With the Latin edition of his "Arcana Cælestia,” he issued an English version of volumes I. and II., in numbers, at a very cheap rate. None of his other works were translated into English in his lifetime, with the exception of his little treatise “On the Intercourse of the Soul and the Body.” This work was translated by his attached friend, William Cookworthy. Six years after Swedenborg's death, in 1778, " Heaven and Hell” was published in English by James Phillips, the Quaker bookseller in George Yard, Lombard street, London,
William Cookworthy was the translator of this work also, and defrayed the cost of the whole edition. The Rev. Thomas Hartley revised the translation, and wrote for it an excellent