Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 10299

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10299. 'An ointment, the work of an ointment-maker' means as a result of the influx and operation of what is Divine and the Lord's within every single part. This is clear from the meaning of 'ointment', or perfume, as the kinds of truth within every single part of the worship, dealt with in 10264; and from the meaning of 'the work of an ointment-maker (or perfumer)' as the influx and operation of Divinity itself, dealt with in 10265.

[2] How to understand this, that the influx and operation must exist within every single part of the worship, must also be stated briefly. Those who have no knowledge of the arcana of heaven suppose that worship begins in the person himself since it flows from the thought and feelings within him. But worship that begins in the person is not true worship; consequently offerings of thanksgiving, adoration, and prayer which begin in the person are not the offerings of thanksgiving, adoration, and prayer that are heard and accepted by the Lord. They must begin in the Lord present with the person. The Church knows that this is so, for it teaches that no good thing emanates from man, but that everything good comes from heaven, that is, begins in God there; also that He is the source of all that is good within worship, and that worship devoid of what is good is not worship. The Church therefore, when engaged in anything holy, prays that God may be present, giving guidance to thought and speech. What happens in all this is that when a person is engaged in true worship the Lord flows into the forms of good and the truths present with the person, raises them towards Himself, and raises the person with them, in the measure and degree that they govern him. This raising is not apparent to the person if he does not have any real affection for truth and good, and does not know, acknowledge, and believe that everything good comes from above, beginning in the Lord.

[3] Even those who are knowledgeable about worldly things can grasp the truth of this, for they know from the learning they have received that there is no such thing as natural influx, or physical influx as they term it, only spiritual influx; that is, nothing can flow from the natural world into heaven, only from heaven into the natural world. All this goes to show how to understand the explanation that the influx and operation of what is Divine and the Lord's must exist in every single part of the worship. I have also been allowed to learn by much experience that it is so; for I have been allowed to feel the actual influx, the calling forth of the truths present within me, the linking of them to the objects of prayer, the accompanying affection for good, and the actual raising up.

[4] But though all this is so, a person ought not to let hands hang down and wait for influx to come, for that would be behaving like a lifeless statue. A person should think, will, and act as if doing so all by himself, yet should attribute to the Lord all his thought of what is true and endeavour towards what is good. When this happens the Lord implants within the person the ability to receive Him and influx from Him.

[5] For the human being was created with no other end in view than to be a receptacle of the Divine; and the ability to receive the Divine is formed within him in no other way. Once it has been formed in him he has no other wish than that the situation should be such, for he loves the influx from the Lord and loathes operating all by himself. This is because influx from the Lord is the influx of good, whereas operating all by oneself is the operation of evil. All the angels in heaven feel the same way, which is why in the Word truths and forms of good derived from the Lord are meant by angels; for they are recipients of them, see 1925, 3039, 4085, 4295, 8192.

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