Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 9865

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9865. 'A ruby, a topaz, a carbuncle' means the celestial love of good. This is clear from the meaning of these stones as the good of celestial love, celestial love being love to the Lord, received from the Lord. Those stones mean that love on account of their red and flaming colour; for 'red' means love, 3300, and so does 'flaming', 3222, 6832, 7620-7622, 9570. But here celestial love is meant because those stones are in the first row; and those in the first row correspond to the realities that exist in the inmost heaven, where celestial love, which is love to the Lord, reigns. Since the twelve stones in the breastplate represented all the truths that spring from good they also represented the whole of heaven; for heaven is heaven by virtue of the Divine Truth emanating from the Lord's Divine Good, the angels there who constitute heaven being recipients of that Truth. So it is that the three stones which are in the first row represent the inmost heaven, consequently the love that reigns there, which is called the celestial love of good and celestial love of truth. The stones in the first row represent the celestial love of good, those in the second row the celestial love of truth. These stones represent that love, as has been stated, on account of their colour; for what precious stones represent is determined by their colours.

[2] In heaven colours of indescribable beauty appear; for they are modifications of heavenly light, and heavenly light is Divine Truth emanating from the Lord. From this it is evident that colours present themselves there in accord with variations of goodness and truth; thus they are modifications of the light emanating from the Lord, through the angels. The light emanating from the Lord appears in the inmost heaven as a flame; therefore the colours resulting from it are red and flashing. But the same light appears in the middle heaven as a brilliantly white light; therefore the colours resulting from it are brilliant, and to the extent that they have good within them they are gleaming. This explains why there are two basic colours to which all others are related, namely the colour red and the colour white; and the colour red is representative of good, while the colour white is representative of truth, see 9467.

[3] From all this it is now clear why it was that stones of so many colours were set in rows in the breastplate, namely in order that they might represent all the forms of good and the truths that exist in heaven in their proper order, and consequently represent the whole of heaven. The reason why the stones in the first row - a ruby, a topaz, and a carbuncle - represented the celestial love of good is that they are different hues of red. Furthermore the noun used in the original language for 'a ruby', the first in the row, is derived from a word that means 'redness'; and that for 'a carbuncle', the third in the row, is derived from a word meaning 'flashing', as if from fire. But as for the derivation of 'a topaz', the middle one in the row, this is unknown, though it very probably comes from something describing a red and flaming colour. This may be why in Job something similar is said of a topaz as is said of gold,

With wisdom the topaz of Ethiopia will not compete, it cannot be valued in pure gold. Job 28:19.

'Gold' too means the good of love, 113, 1551, 1552, 5658, 6914, 6917, 8932, 9490, 9510.

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