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From Hell to Heaven
Chapter 121 - Opinions and counsels. Dismas sets the hearts in order. Robert’s gratitude. The blessings of neighbourly love.
1. So Bardo steps up to Robert, saying: “Friends, I cannot deny that the sudden disappearance of the Lord together with the large crowd seems ominous to me. But I look at it this way: should the former story with a thousand wise phenomena have been just a dream-like appearance, then we are free are and our own law-givers therewith. Hence we can do as is most favourable for our needs, no strange power being able to hinder us. If however that which we have experienced and seen in this world is pure spiritual truth and reality, and that Jesus, Who is supremely beloved by us is Lord, then this our embarrassment is no more than a test for our benefit. His love and grace lets is come upon us to make us more independent and self-motivated and as it were more masculine. When I think that we should vastly multiply our love for Jesus the Lord – the way He taught us, raised us up and blessed us with His almighty Creator’s hand, whereupon He shall soon be in our midst, together with all the dear brothers and sisters! That is my advice. Should anyone know better then I beg them to come forward with it!”
2. Says Niklas: “Brother, I must admit that you always hit the nail on the head! It is as you have said, and cannot be otherwise! I did indeed understand friend Bruno before you, but now you could be our leader. Verily, we all are deficient in our love for the Lord, wherefore He left us in a bit of a quandary. The beautiful Helena is certain not to be without Him like us. Why? Because she knew how to seize Him at His weakest point right from the start – namely, by the heart! We however, as wisdom merchants, thought we had spooned out the entire celestial kingdom, now standing here as the prettiest oxen!
3. Therefore – more love! We must bring our Lord far more love than intellect for a sacrifice; then He shall not depart! But if, carrying out the Lord’s commands, we imagine ourselves as divine charge d’affaires, to be rather more than other gulpers of God’s graces, then there will not of course be a shortage of experiences that will seem most peculiar. But I think that we are ourselves even stranger than these experiences! Am I right?”
4. Say all of them: “Completely so! It is our fault. But the Lord knows our foolishness and shows us forbearance!”
5. Dismas moves up a little, saying: “Dear friends, allow me a word too. Regarding the forbearance for our foolishness, there I think we are on shaky ground. Because if it is all about the achieving of perfection by the human spirit, after employment of his own power, - following receipt of the inner life-power from God, when he enters the recognised divine order, thereupon moving forward actively with his very own life-element, – then there might be a hitch to a merciful show of forbearance.
6. “We now have a power and plenty of divine doctrine. Now it is up to us to self-activatingly develop ourselves as demanded b your recognition of the divine order! – The first is a free love according to our heart’s capacity. To love God more than one can would be foolish. But to love God less than our hearts demand would be criminal casualness, that would ultimately land us in a condition of half death. If we have the right measure of love, then we shall also have wisdom and a corresponding effective power with which, as free and perfected spirits from within, we shall, out of ourselves as if out of God, move in free action. God is certainly within Himself the highest order. If however we intend to grasp this order, then we shall first have to attain to true order, or we shall not ever be able to lay claim to full freedom.
7. “Our ordering of these mixed-up tables and benches as commanded by the Lord is a divine finger-pointing at what we still have to do upon and through ourselves in order to in future be capable of holding our own before God. Hence it is now up to us to gratefully utilise this manifestation as the Lord will it.
8. “If we think properly about how we still are constituted, - whether we in fact are now devoid of all vice, and whether there is any residual arrogance, and whether we are in practice taking up the good for its own sake, then we may no longer find it hard to go over into perfection of the spirit and await the Lord as perfected beings after His order. But if we regard this appearance as a kind of sleight from the Lord, wondering about it, then we could still be far from our goal!
9. “It is not enough that, like enlivened machines, we act out what the Lord asked us to do, but we must rather probe the true reason within us, because only thereby can we place ourselves into a live divine order. There is little or almost nothing to the outer order of this furniture. But if it is a pointer from the Lord, then we should somewhat order all our life-implements inside the second chamber of our heart, that of divine wisdom. Then there is an immensity to this manifestation. But if any one of you can think of anything better, then let him bring it out in the Lord’s name!”
10. Says Robert: “I am completely taken aback by your wisdom. Were you not just recently a stubborn rejecter of the Deity in Christ, and it caused us much effort to set you right. We were not a little troubled about you, but you now are ahead of us by half an eternity. You have now revealed such great truth to us that I confess that we may not have gotten behind such revelations for a thousand years without you. Brother, you have rendered us a great service thereby!
11. “Behold, this house the Lord has made over to me forever, yet I myself know only the smallest part of its interior treasures. But if it gave you joy then I would give it to you on the spot! You have given us holy words as if out of God’s own mouth which have upraised us in our wasteland. Oh, one such word is worth more than a hundred thousand such dwellings! Hence accept what I am able to give! It is over here my greatest possession, other than the Lord Himself, and you. Beloved brother, how nice and dear you have now become to us all! How long is it since we looked down on you with sympathy, and now you tower over us all. Hence I beg you to upraise us with a few more such words!”
12. Says Dismas: “Dear brethren, have you not heard that one hand always washes the other? Your brotherly sense had heretofore purified me, lifting me out from the depth of my depravity; for I had inwardly been a citizen of hell. But you know how to seize my innermost, and it saved me. You yourselves however have only suffered a small amount of embarrassment on account of the self-ordering test that the Lord let come over us in this second chamber. So I drew a few words from my inward parts, and they did not miss the desired effect – all praise to the Lord!
13. “But this does not, Robert, make me worthy of your giving me your house, which the Lord built out of your heart; which transfer might not, my humble opinion, be so easily possible either. Behold, the house with all its glories completely corresponds to your heart, from whose love of God and neighbour the Lord constructed this glorious work. If therefore I were to accept this house from you as a present, I would therewith take also your heart and life, as this house is in all fundamental truth your heart’s love-working nature itself.
14. “But it is easily possible to spiritually live with you in your house, for a noble man allows quite a few friends to rule his heart more than he does himself. And he does so the more easily over here, because the Lord lets all those things manifest vividly which in the world remain only an active desire. Here however everything becomes tactile reality, remaining nevertheless what it was in the world – the heart and its love-work-related arrangement.
15. “But just as upon Earth, truly genuine children of God desire to completely give away their heart to their brethren, just so you, most beloved brother, want to give me you won heart as a gift. This certainly is most noble, but it is completely impossible here in the spiritual world, and it would also be unnecessary and useless, because where true brotherly love gives commandments for ‘mine’ and ‘yours’, there no demarcations disputes shall arise eternally. No law so much assures everyone’s ‘his’ as mightily as the commandment of neighbourly love, due to which everyone places his own at the disposal of everyone else. And so it is sheer impossible over here for anyone to go without.
16. “We all now dwell within you, as you dwell within us all. Which of us can say: brethren, I don’t have enough. Each one has his won, and the more he has and gives, the more he receives back. The hearts over here are like the seas – one constantly pours into the other, yet none ever is short of water. And so you don’t need to give me your house, for I am enjoying it as if it were my own. Wherefore my own also is at your freest disposal.
17. “But hearken! I hear voices in the adjacent first chamber. Let us go and see at the door what is happening!”
18. Says Robert: “Thank you, dearest brother, for this splendid instruction, which truly leaves nothing to be desired! But since I too hear many voices, it is time we all check what is going on. But you, dear brother, go at my side, as you have become very indispensable to me.”
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