Jonathan Bayley writes that angels can only be seen with "spiritual eyes" in the context of describing biblical visions.

Jonathan Bayley

Jonathan Bayley, From Egypt to Canaan (London: Charles P. Alvey, 1867), 406–407

Charles P. Alvey
Jonathan Bayley
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Before proceeding in our consideration of the narrative, it may be well to observe that Balaam was a seer, or one as he himself several times declares, “who saw visions of the Almighty , having his eyes open,” that is, his spiritual eyes. Now, with such a one, there is often such a blending of the perception of the spiritual, with the natural, that as the apostle Paul expresses it, whether he is inthe body or out of the body he cannot tell. — 2 Cor. xii. 2. So whether an object is in the natural world, or in the spiritual world, as far as sight goes, he cannot tell.

Whenever an angel is seen, we may be assured that it is with spiritual eyes, for natural eyes can only see natural objects, and spiritual eyes can only see spiritual objects. So when Balaam saw the angel, Divine Providence had uncovered his spiritual sight, and he then beheld the objects of the spiritual world.

We must not forget also that each animal has its spiritual form , which is the soul of its natural form. It has not the spiritual and celestial degrees of the soul, nor that internal which links man to God, as a human being has, and therefore has neither the principles nor the capacity of immortal life, yet it has that lower degree of mind in which the animal appetites reside, and which can be seen in the spiritual world, and if granted, can see there. Hence, animals have a limited species of thought, a mental sympathy with man, and frequently appear to dream. In the sacred narrative, the Ass is said to have seen the angel before the prophet did so, and we can hardly regard this as difficult to be conceived. In the other life, the forms of animals constantly appear, corresponding to the ideas and sentiments which are the subjects of the thoughts of the angels near whom they are. And while they remain, they seem in all respects like animals on earth. They are, in fact, the spiritual forms which, when clothed with matter, become animals on the earth.

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