Deathbed scenes

- Scene 3 -
A rich man


3 August 1847

ere we are again, at the deathbed of a man, who was very rich, managed his wealth justly, brought up his children in the best possible manner and with all that always gave freely to the poor - of course also now and again for a so-called jolly hour to those poor but young harlots, who can be had for such jolly things for a ducat. Besides, he held the Holy Scriptures in great esteem, reading often and diligently in them and firmly believing that Jesus was actually Jehovah. All this he learnt from the works of Swedenborg, all of which, with the exception of a few minor books, he had read.
Such literacy made him also flare up whenever he heard someone talk indifferently or even in a belittling manner of Jesus; and if he met such an "Antichrist" among his company, this person did well to leave early or else had to expect evil consequences, even physical attacks. In short, our man was a perfect paragon of pure Christianity.
This man fell ill at a rather advanced age after a great banquet where he had too much to eat, but particularly because after the meal, his blood being stirred up owing to the many strong wines imbibed, he cohabited twice with a young, voluptuous harlot.
When our man came home after this expedition, he felt a slight dizziness, which he mistook for intoxication. And as soon as he tried to get into bed, his legs failed him. He collapsed and was instantly completely dead, as you say.
It goes without saying that his loved ones, in great alarm, at once tried everything to revive the householder. But it was a vain effort, for whatsoever has once been picked up by angel spirits, will not wake up again for this world.
Therefore, not much more can be seen and heard in this world of this man, and so we will proceed at once to the spirit world and see how our man fits in, what he is going to do and where he turns to.
First of all you must know that people who have suffered a stroke do not know and are not in the least aware of the fact that, and how, they have died. They find no change, neither in their household, as it was on earth, nor in their physical well-being, except that they are quite healthy, which they have usually been in the world also. As well, they fail to see angels, although these are close by, and they see nothing at all of the spirit world in which they are certainly and completely. In short, in everything they are still, as it were, in the world. They eat and drink, living where they always lived, in their house and within the circle of their family, where they miss no member of their family.
Thus it was and is exactly the same case with our man - look, already in the spirit world. He gets into bed in good spirits in his well-known bedroom, which is in every detail identical with the one on earth. See how comfortably he stretches out on his bed seeking and expecting sleep! But this single detail makes our man somewhat puzzled, namely, that this time he cannot find any sleep, for sleep is unknown to spirits. Although they have a corresponding condition, which is there called rest, essentially it has not the slightest resemblance to the earthly sleep.
Now let us listen to our man personally and see how he is behaving in his new condition and what he thinks of it. Listen to what he is now saying while in his bed: "You, Lini, are you asleep?" Lini (his wife) sits up in bed and asks: "What do you want, dear Leopold, is anything the matter with you?" (Wife and children and others belonging to the household are represented as it were undercover by specially commissioned angels). Says the man: "No, nothing is the matter, I am quite well, heaven be praised. Only sleep, not the slightest resemblance to sleep is there. Go and give me my sleeping pills; I shall swallow a few, perhaps it will be all right then."
Lini gets up and fulfils her husband's will. But although the pills have been swallowed, sleep will not come.
After a while the man says: "Lini, go, give me a few more, for you see, I still cannot find any sleep. Instead of more sleepy, I am becoming more and more lively."
Lini says: "Go on, forget the pills; you could easily spoil your stomach with them. Instead, make love to me, and you will perhaps have a better chance to sleep, since you want to sleep at all costs."
Says the man in some consternation: "Yes, dear Lini, concerning the act, it may have its difficulty with me. For you know from long experience that I am never disposed to it after a great feast. For in that case, nature refuses to cooperate. So give me a few more pills instead!"
Says the wife: "Strange, my dear husband! But rumor has it that the rich, pious Leopold after such feasts usually goes to one Cilli, making love to her so that a youth could take an example from him. But if later the faithful, somewhat more aged Lini points out to him that she is Leopold's wife and sometimes for certain reasons cannot find any sleep either, Leopold has always a thousand theosophical, philosophical and God knows what reasons with which to appease the wife's justified and anyway rarely made demands. Look, Leopold, you friend of truth, how do you feel in secret when you utter such despicable and truly hypocritical lies to me, your always most faithful wife? How often you painted to me the ignominy of adultery in the most glaring colors! What do you say for yourself, if I can prove to you beyond doubt that you yourself are an adulterer?"
Says the husband, quite taken aback: "Lini, dear wife, how is it that you know such deeds of mine? Truly, this I could have done only heavily intoxicated, and if I did it, I count on your Christian patience with my human weakness, hoping you will not use it to dishonor our whole house! Be reasonable, dear wife, be reasonable and stop talking about it. You see, I still love you exceedingly. Just be good again, be good, my dear Lini wife, and I shall never again do this in all my life!"
Says Lini: "I believe that too. If someone has lived all his life like that, deceiving his faithful wife at least every two weeks and even contracting several times a nasty sickness, it will certainly be time to forget such actions, of which Scripture says: "Whoremongers and adulterers will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven!" Do tell me, my in all theosophy well-informed husband, what would you do if the Lord should suddenly call you away? How about your blissfulness in that case? Or do you have a written statement by the Lord, saying that He will let you love until your thorough betterment? I do not want to say anything on account of one Cilli, but what shall I say about the unmistakable amorous attachment to our own eldest daughter, which prior to her marriage you demonstrated in a manner as to imprint on your theosophical forehead an indelible blemish before God and all people, provided they knew about it? Or what will God say about it?"
Says the husband, even more startled: "O wife, you are beginning to torment me in earnest. Of course, it is, alas, justified, for it would be more than silly of me to deny it. But it is still hurtful and I fail to comprehend how you, who as far as I know in all our married years never made mention of it, suddenly open all locks trying to downright destroy me?" "Consider that we human beings are all weak in our flesh, even though we have the willing spirit, and you will easily forgive me all my weaknesses! Remember that the Lord did not condemn the adulteress, and so also a repentant adulterer will surely find mercy with Him. Therefore also you, dear wife, do not judge me, for I certainly confess and repent my great sin against you as well as the grievous sin against our married daughter. May the Lord Jesus forgive me, as you are forgiving me."
The phantom wife says: "Well then, let all that has happened be forgiven you in full. But see that from now on you no longer abuse your pretended weakness, or you will derive little blessing from this fullest forgiveness on my part! Therefore, I shall bear with you for some time more - and see! But you will not ever sleep, for look and listen: you are no longer on the earth, but here in the world of spirits! And I, whom you mistook for your often mad wife, am not your wife, but - observe - I am your Lord and your God! Remain as you are, if you like; however, if you want to progress, follow Me out of this your old phantom room!"
The man recognizes Me and falls on his face before Me, speechless.
But I say to him: "Raise yourself up; for your love is greater than your sin, and thus everything is forgiven you! However, with Me you cannot as yet take your abode, as long as anything earthly is clinging to you. But look, angels are standing there in readiness, who will guide you on the right paths. And when your earthly house will be smitten with want and poverty by your guides, you will find a new abode with Me forever. Amen!"
You see, this is again another "water". Some remain for a longer time in the natural state like the one of our man. The reason why it was so short was because he did many loving and good deeds while on the earth and because he immediately showed earnest remorse for his transgression.