We will now give a memorable Relation in which the African genius is exhibited in contrast with the European. “One morning before sunrise I look out towards the east in the spiritual world, and I saw four horsemen as it were flying forth out of a cloud fulgent with the flame of dawn. On the heads of the horsemen were crested helmets (cassides crispate); on their shoulders (brachiis) as it were wings; and around their bodies light tunics of an orange colour. Thus dress for speed, they rose in their seats and spread the reins on the manes of their horses, which rushed onwards like winged creatures. I continued to sight their course of flight with a mind to know where they were going; and lo and behold three of the horsemen spread themselves into three Quarters, the south, the west, the north, and in a brief space the forth stood still in the east.
“Wondering at these things, I looked up to heaven, and I asked where those horsemen were going. And I got for answer, “ To the wise in the kingdom of Europe whose judgement is severe and penetration signal in finding things out and who have obtained the laurels of genius from their fellows, to invite them to come together, and solve the secret ‘Of the origin of Conjugial Love, and of its virtue or Potency.’ “And they said from heaven, ‘ Wait a little, and you will see twenty-seven chariots; three with Spaniards in them; three with Frenchmen or Gauls; three with Italians; three with Germans; three with Batavians or Dutchmen; three with English; three with Swedes; three with Danes; and three with Poles. And then in two hours these chariots appeared drawn by small horses red in colour and elegant in their trappings, and were swiftly driven to a spacious house which showed itself in the confines of the east and south; and at this house all those who had arrived in the chariots got out, and at they entered with a brave bearing.
“And then it was said to me, ‘And do you also go in, and you will hear.’
“I went and I entered in. And surveying the house inside, I saw that it was square; the lie of the sides to the (four) quarters; in each side three high windows of crystalline panes, the side-frames of these of olive wood. On both sides of the posts or frames there were recesses in the walls in the shape of arched chambers, with tables in them. The walls of these were of cedar; the roof of noble thyme (Citron) wood; the floor, of planks of poplar. At the eastern wall, where no windows were seen, a table was placed overlaid with gold, and a diadem (cidaris) set round with precious stones had been laid upon the table, which should be for the palm or prize to him who gave the clue to the secret soon to be propounded. When I ranged my eye over the chambered recesses which stood like cabinets beside the windows, I saw in each chamber from each kingdom of Europe five men, who were prepared and waiting for the theme for their opinions.
“And now straightway an angel stood in the middle of the palace, and said, ‘The object of your judgements must be The origin of conjugial love, and of its virtue or potency. Ventilate this, and decide upon it. And write your decision upon a paper, and put this paper into the silver urn which you see placed at (juxta) the golden table and subscribe the initial letter of the kingdom from which you come; thus for French, F.; for Hollanders, H.; for Italians, I.; for English, E.; for Poles, P; for Germans, G.; Spaniards, S.; for Danes, D.; and for Swedes, S. Delivering these words the Angel went away, and said, ‘ I will return.’
“And then the five natives in each cabinet at the windows discussed the theme given out, looked into it this way and that, and according to their best judgements, decreed upon it, wrote their decision on the papers; subscribed on these the initials of their country, and put them into the silver receptacle. This consumed three hours; when the angel returned, and drew the papers in order from the urn, and read them before the assembly.
“Then from the first paper which his hand took up by accident (forte). He reads these words: ‘We five fellow countrymen have decreed in our cabinet that the origin of conjugial love is from the most ancient people in the golden age, and among these from the creation of Adam and his wife. Thence comes the origin of marriages, and with marriages the origin of conjugial love, this we derive from no other source than the climate or position of the sun and the relative heat thereof in the various countries. This result of our contemplations we do not arrive at from empty imagination of the mind, but from the plain teaching of experience. We gather it from the people under the line, the equinoctial circle, where the diurnal heat is intense; and from the people living near the line and more remote from it. Also we infer it from the co-operation of the solar heat with the vital heat in the animals and birds of the earth and the sky at the time of spring when they breed. More over, what is conjugial love but heat, which supplement of heat comes to it from the sun, because virtue or potency.’ The subscription to these words was S., the initial of (Spain) the kingdom from which they came.
“After this he put his hand into the urn a second time, and took out a paper from which he read these words: ‘We fellow-countrymen in our common cabinet have agreed that the origin of conjugial love is identical with the origin of marriages, which have been made irrevocable by laws to bridle the lust of men prone by nature to adulteries, which ruin souls, defile the right thoughts of the mind make morals unclean, and waste the vigour of the body. For adulteries are not human but bestial, not rational but brutish, and therefore are utterly non-Christian and barbarous. On the ground of the condemnation of such things, we have the origin of marriages, and at the same time of conjugial Love. The like holds with the virtue or potency of this love, inasmuch as this depends on chastity, which is abstinence from wandering indulgence or whoredoms. The reason here is that for him who loves his wife alone the virtue or potency is reserved for one, and collected and as it were concentrated; and then it becomes noble, a quintessence with its impurities drawn off, where otherwise it would be dispersed and cast about in all directions. One of us five who is a priest also alleges predestination as a cause of this virtue or potency, and says, “Are not marriages predestined? And if marriages, then also begetting of offspring by marriages, and to this end efficacies, are predestined.” He insisted on this cause because he had sworn to it.’ The letter ‘ H.’ (Holland) was signed to these words.
“And in a moment he drew out a fourth paper, from which he read the following: ‘We fellow-countrymen under our window have decreed that the origin of conjugial love and of love of the sex is the same, because the former is from the latter; only that the love of the sex is not limited, is not bounded, is dissolute, promiscuous, and wandering, but conjugial love is limited, determinate, gathered up, certain and constant: and this love, therefore, by the prudence of human wisdom, has been made sacred, and established by ordinance; seeing that otherwise there could be neither empire, nor kingdom, nor commonwealth; yea, not society; but men in troops and bands would wander in plains and woods with harlots and ravished women; and would fly from one settlement to another to avoid blood and slaughter, violation and rapine; by which the whole human race would go to wreck. This is our judgement concerning the origin of conjugial love. But we get the virtue or potency of conjugial love from the soundness of the body maintained unimpaired from birth to old age. For a man continually well preserved and in the enjoyment of unbroken health, is not larking in vigour. His fibres, nerves, muscles, cremasters, are neither asleep, relaxed, or flaccid, but live up to the sum of their forces. Fare ye well.’ To this the letter ‘E.’ (England) was subscribed.
“Fifthly he drew out a paper from the urn, and read as follows: “ We fellow- countrymen at our table, in the rationality of our minds, have looked into the origin of conjugial love, and into the origin of its virtue or potency, and considering the conditions all round we have seen and approved that the origin of conjugial love is no other than this, that every man, out of the manifold fuel and incitement stored away in the recesses of his mind and body, after various indulgence in the lust of his eyes, at length he is thoroughly warmed to her. From this time his heat mounts from flame to flame, until fire breaks forth. In this state the lust of the sex is banished and conjugial love takes place of lust. The youthful spouse in this fire is not aware that the virtue or potency of this love will ever cease, for he lacks the experience and sense of the state of defect of force and thus of the cooling of love after delights. The origin of conjugial love comes therefore from that first ardour antecedent to nuptials; and its virtue or potency comes from this ardour, But after the nuptials this potency tries different torches, and decreases and increases, but last on the steady alternation (stabili mutatione), or decrease and increase, to old age, by the tempering of prudence, and by bridling of the lust which burst from the still uncleansed dens of the mind. For lust comes before wisdom comes. This is our judgement about the origin and perseverance of conjugial virtue or potency.’ The letter “P.” (Poland) was subscribed to these opinions.
“Sixthly he drew out a paper from which he read this: ‘We fellow-countrymen in our mutual comradeship have roundly surveyed the causes of the origin of conjugial love, and we have agreed together upon two causes one of which is the just education of sons, and the other is the distinct possession of inheritance. We have taken these two for granted, because they intend and regard one aim which is the public good. And this is obtained, because infants conceived and born of conjugial love becomes our own, of one family (proprii et germani); and through love exalted by natural affection, in that they are of legitimate descent, these infants are raised up to be heirs to all the possessions, both spiritual and natural, of their parents. Reason sees that the public good is founded upon the right education of children, and upon the distinct possession of inheritances. There are these two, love of the sex and conjugial love. The latter appears to be one with the former, but it is distinctly from it. Nor is the one beside the other, but the one is within the other. And that which is within is noble compared to that which is without. And we have seen that conjugial love by creation is within, and hidden away in the love of the sex, very much like an almond inside its shell. Wherefore when conjugial love is released from its shell (crysta), which is the love of the sex, it shines before the angels like a beryl and an astrite. This happens because the safety of the whole human race, which we mean by the public good, is inscribed on conjugial love. With regard, however, to the origin of its virtue or potency from a consideration of causes we have concluded that this is due to the detachment and separation of conjugial love from the love of the sex, which is effected by wisdom on the part of the man and by the love of the man’s wisdom on the part of the wife. Man has that love of the sex in common with the beasts, but conjugial love is proper to men. Wherefore in proportion as conjugial love is detached and separated from the love of the sex, in that proportion a man is a man, not a beast from his.’ These words were subscribed with the letter ‘G.’ (Germany).
“Seventhly he drew forth a paper from which he read the following: ‘We fellow-countrymen in the chamber under the light of our window have exhilarated our thought and their conclusion by meditation on conjugial love. Who is not exhilarated by it? For this love while in the mind is simultaneously in the whole body. We judge the origin of this love from the enjoyments of it. Who in the world knows or ever has known a trace of any love except from the joy and pleasure of it? The enjoyments of conjugial love in their origins are felt as blessings, happiness, and felicities; in their derivations as charms and pleasures; and in their last places as delights of delights. The love of the sex has origin therefore while the interiors of the mind, and so then the interiors of the body, are opened for the influx of these enjoyments. But conjugial love had its origin when the primitive sphere of the former love, acting on the early stages of courtship and betrothal, ideally carried them forward. With regard to the virtue or potency of that love, it comes from the free passage (permesbilitate) of that love and the vein of it from the mind into the body. In fact the mind is out of the head in the body when it feels and acts, especially when it is getting the delight out of this love. From all this we judge the degrees of its potency and the constancy of its alternate states. And furthermore we deduce the virtue of potency from the family stock. If it is noble in the father, by transmission it becomes noble in the children. Reason in alliance with experience confirms the position that the above nobility is generated, is inherited, and descends by inheritance.’ These words were subscribed with the letter ‘F.’ (France)
“The eight times a paper came out from which he read as follows: ‘We fellow-countrymen in our meeting have not found the actual origin of conjugial love, because it lies intimately stored away in the sacred chambers of the mind. The most consummate wisdom can with no ray of the intellect light upon that love in its origin. We have divined many things, but after chasing empty subtleties, we have not known whether we were pursuing trifles or judgements. Whoso therefore determines to draw out the origin of that love from the sacred recesses of the mind, and to hold it in view, must go to Delphi. We have contemplated this love in minds; a fountain of sweet vein there: whence it flows down into the bosom, where it is its joy, and is bosom-love; which in itself is full of friendship, and full of confidence coming out of full inclination to mutuality. And when it has passed through the bosom it becomes nuptial love (amor genialia). When the young man revolves these and the like experiences in his thoughts, as he does when he chooses by preference one of the sex for himself, they kindle the fire of conjugial love in the heart; and as this fire is the primitive fire of that love, so it is the origin of it. We recognise that the origin of the virtue or potency is no other than this very love itself. It has indeed individual comrades, but they are such that sometimes one is in front, and sometimes another. When the love takes lead, and the virtue or potency follows it, both are noble, because the power is then the virtue of conjugial love. But if the potency precedes and the love follows, then both are ignoble, because the love then is of carnal potency. From the order therefore in which the love descends and ascends, and marches from its origin to the goal, we infer the quality of both the love and the potency. The letter ‘D.’ was here subscribed.
“Nightly and lastly he took a paper which he reads the following: We fellow-countrymen in our debate have exercised judgement on those two matters which have been set before us, namely, the origin of conjugial love, and the origin of its virtue or potency. Falling among subtleties about the origin of conjugial love, and wishing to clear our minds of shadows, we have distinguished the love of the sex into spiritual, natural, and carnal. And by the spiritual love of the sex we understand love truly conjugial, because this is spiritual; and by the love of the sex we understand polygamical love, because this is natural; and by the merely carnal love of the sex understand scortatory love, because this love, because this is merely carnal. On turning our mature thoughts (judicia) inwards to love truly conjugial, we have well seen that this love is possible only between one male and one female and that by creation it is heavenly, intimate, and the soul and father of all good loves; inspired into our first parents: and for inspiration into Christians. And its conjunctive faculty is such, that thought it, two minds can become one mind, and two humanities (homines) as one man; which is meant by becoming one flesh. The Book of Creation is clear upon the point that this love was inspired from creation. ‘And the man shall leave Father and Mother, and cleave unto his Wife, and they shall be one flesh’ (Gen. ii. 24). That it is for inspiration into Christians, is plain from these words, ‘ Have ye not read that He who made from the beginning, made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave ho his wife, and the twain shall become one flesh? So that they are no more twain but one flesh’ (Matt. xix. 4-6) So much for the origin of conjugial love. Now we conclude that the origin of the virtue or potency of truly conjugial love is an issue from the similitude if minds, and from unanimity; for when two minds are conjugially united, their thoughts spiritually kiss each other, and these thoughts inbreathe their virtue or potency into the body.’ The letter ‘S’ (Sweden) was here subscribed.
“There stood behind an oblong erected in the palace in front of the doors certain strangers from Africa, who called out to the natives of Europe: ‘Permit one of us also to proffer an opinion concerning the origin of conjugial love, and concerning its virtue or potency.’ And all the tables approved with clapping of hands.
“And then one of the strangers entered and stood up at the table upon which the diadem was placed. He said: ‘You Christians deduce the origin of conjugial love from the love itself, but we Africans deduce it from the GOD of heaven and earth. Is not conjugial love chaste, pure, and holy? Are not the angels in it? Is not the human race universal, and therefore the universal angelic heaven the seed of that love? Can any such superminent thing exist from any other source than from very GOD, the creator and Sustained of the Universe? You Christians deduce conjugial virtue or potency from various causes, rational and natural; but we African deduce it from the state of the conjunction of man with the GOD of the universe. This state we call the state of religion, but you call it the state of the Church. When love is from this source, and as such stable and perpetual, it cannot do otherwise than work its own virtue, which is like it; so also stable and perpetual. Truly conjugial love is not known excepting to those few who are near to God. So neither is the potency of that love known to others. This potency with that love is described by the Angels in the heavens as delight of perpetual spring.’
“On hearing these words all rose, and lo! Behind the golden table on which the diadem was, a window not seen before has been made, and from beyond it a voice was heard, ‘The diadem must be for the African.’ And the angel gave it into his hand, but did not put it upon his head, and he went away home with it.
“And the inhabitants of the kingdoms of Europe went out and entered their chariots, in which they return to their own people” (Conjugial love, n. 103-114).
The voice from the new window, which opened toward the spiritual East, where the Divine Sun of righteousness is always shining, gave the palm to the African, and the Angels who presided at the urn handed him the prize. Would this be the decision of the learned, ecclesiastical, or laical, in Europe, to day? Some day, perhaps, such councils may be held in the world, and then we shall know..........................