Arcana Coelestia, by Emanuel Swedenborg, [1749-56], tr. by John F. Potts [1905-10], at sacred-texts.com
And take us for servants, and our asses. That this signifies until whatever is in both naturals be as nothing, is evident from the representation of Jacob's ten sons, who say this of themselves, as being truths in the natural (see n. 5403, 5419, 5427, 5458, 5512); and from the signification of "servants," as being things of slight importance (n. 2541), here of none at all (of which in what follows); and from the signification of "asses," as being things in the natural which are memory-knowledges (n. 5492), here in the exterior natural, because the truths signified by "Jacob's sons" are in the interior natural.  In regard to whatever is in both naturals being as nothing the case is this. In order that a man may become spiritual, his natural must become as nothing, that is, be able to do nothing whatever of itself, because insofar as the natural is able of itself, so far the spiritual is not able; for the natural has imbibed from infancy nothing else than the things of the cupidities of self and of the world, thus those which are contrary to charity. These evils prevent the influx of good through the internal man from the Lord, for whatever flows in is turned in the natural into evil, the natural being the plane in which the influx terminates. And therefore unless the natural (that is, the evil and falsity which have formed it) becomes as nothing, good cannot possibly flow in through heaven from the Lord. It has no abiding place, but is dissipated; for it cannot stay in evil and falsity. It is for this reason that the internal is closed so long as the natural does not become as nothing. This also is known in the church from the doctrine that the old man must be put off in order that the new may be put on.  Regeneration is nothing else than that the natural be subjugated, and the spiritual obtain the dominion; and the natural is subjugated when it is reduced to correspondence. When the natural has been reduced to correspondence, it does not react any more, but acts as it is commanded, and obeys the spiritual, almost as the acts of the body obey the behest of the will, and as the speech, together with the expression of the face, conforms to the influx of the thought. From this it is plain that for a man to become spiritual the natural must needs become as nothing whatever in respect to willing.  But be it known that it is the old natural that must become as nothing, because this has been formed from evils and falsities; and when it has become as nothing the man is then gifted with a new natural, which is called the spiritual natural-spiritual from the fact that the spiritual is what acts through it, and manifests itself through it, as the cause through the effect. It is known that the cause is everything of the effect. Hence the new natural in its thinking, willing, and producing effect, is nothing else than the representative of the spiritual. When this comes to pass the man receives good from the Lord; and when he receives good he is gifted with truths; and when he is gifted with truths he is perfected in intelligence and wisdom; and when he is perfected in intelligence and wisdom he is blessed with happiness to eternity.5652.
And they came near to the man that was over Joseph's house. That this signifies the doctrinals of the church, is evident from the signification of the "man over Joseph's house," as being that which is of the external church (of which above, n. 5640), thus doctrine, for this is of the church. Moreover, by "man" is signified truth, and thus doctrine (n. 3134), and by a "house," the church (see n. 1795), and as "Joseph" is the internal (n. 5469), "Joseph's house" is the internal church. Doctrine from the Word is what is over this house, in being of service and in ministering.5653.
And they spoke unto him at the door of the house. That this signifies taking counsel of them about introduction, is evident from the signification of "speaking to the man over Joseph's house," as being to take counsel of them, namely, of doctrinals; and from the signification of the "door of the house," as being introduction (see n. 2356, 2385), here from the natural or external man to the spiritual or internal, which is the subject treated of. As this is signified, it is not said in the original "at the door of the house," but "the door of the house."5654.
And said, In me, my lord. That this signifies a testifying, is evident from this very form of speech, as being one of testifying, namely, that they will tell the truth about the silver that was found in the mouth of everyone's bag.5655.
In coming down we came down in the beginning to buy food. That this signifies a disposition to procure good for truths, is evident from the signification of "coming down," as being a disposition or an intention; for he who comes down or betakes himself anywhere, does so from a disposition, here to procure good for truths, signified by "to buy food;" for by "buying" is signified procuring and appropriating (n. 5374, 5397, 5406, 5414, 5426), and by "food," the good of truth (n. 5340, 5342), here good for the truths represented by Jacob's sons, who say this of themselves.5656.
And it came to pass when we came to the inn and we opened our bags. That this signifies introspection into the exterior natural, is evident from the signification of an "inn," as being the exterior natural in general (see n. 5495); and from the signification of "opening," as being introspection, for he who opens does so for the sake of looking in; and from the signification of a "bag," as being specifically the exterior natural (n. 5497).5657.
And behold everyone's silver in the mouth of his bag. That this signifies that it was clearly seen that truths had been given as it were gratuitously, is evident from the signification of "everyone's silver in his bag," as being truths given gratuitously (see n. 5530, 5624). It is similar with "everyone's silver in the mouth of his bag," with the difference that by this are signified the truths that had been given gratuitously, and that had been stored up in the threshold of the exterior natural; for by the "mouth of the bag" is signified the threshold of the exterior natural (n. 5497). As it were given gratuitously is here signified because they are in a state of doubt as to whether they would be willing to be conjoined with the internal and become as nothing; and when anyone is in a state of doubt, he feels doubtful also about the truths which confirm.5658.
Our silver in its weight. That this signifies truths according to each one's state, is evident from the signification of "silver," as being truth (see n. 1551, 2954); and from the signification of "weight," as being the state of a thing as to good (n. 3104); thus "truths according to each one's state" is according to the good they are capable of receiving. Weights and measures are mentioned in many passages of the Word; yet in the internal sense they do not signify weights and measures; but weights signify the states of a thing as to good, and measures the states of a thing as to truth. So also do heaviness and extension; heaviness in the natural world corresponds to good in the spiritual world, and extension to truth. The reason is that in heaven, which is the source of correspondences, there is no heaviness and no extension, because there is no space. Things indeed appear heavy and extended among spirits; but these are appearances arising from states of good and truth in a higher heaven.  That "silver" signifies truth was very well known in ancient times. Hence the ancients distinguished the several ages of the world from the first to the last into the golden, the silver, the copper, and the iron ages, to which they added an age of clay. They called those times the golden ages when there was innocence and wholeness, and when everyone did what was good from good, and what was just from justice. They called those times the silver ages when there was no longer innocence, but still a kind of wholeness that consisted not in doing good from good, but in doing truth from truth; and they gave the name of copper and iron to the ages which are yet lower.  That they so designated these periods was not from comparison, but from correspondence; for the ancients knew that silver corresponds to truth, and gold to good, and this by communication with spirits and angels. For when good is spoken about in a higher heaven, there is an appearance of gold below among those who are beneath them in the first or lowest heaven; and when truth is spoken of, there is an appearance of silver; sometimes so that not only the walls of the rooms where they dwell sparkle with gold and silver, but also the very atmosphere. Tables of gold also, golden lampstands, and many other things, appear with the angels of the first or ultimate heaven who are in good from good; while to those who are in truth from truth, such objects appear of silver. Yet who at the present day knows that it was from their correspondence that the ancients called these the gold and silver ages? Indeed who at this day knows anything about correspondence? And he who does not know this, and still more he who makes pleasure and wisdom consist in disputing whether it is or is not so, cannot know the least of the countless things that belong to correspondence.5659.
And we have brought it back in our hand. That this signifies that what had been given gratuitously would be in submission as far as possible, is evident from the signification of "bringing back," as here being to submit; and from the signification of "in our hand," as being as far as possible (of which above, n. 5624). Its having been given gratuitously is signified by the "silver in the mouth of the bag which they had brought back" (n. 5657).5660.
And other silver have we brought down in our hand to buy food. That this signifies that there is a disposition to procure good by means of truth from another source, is evident from the signification of "silver," as being truth (of which just above, n. 5657); and as by "silver" is signified truth, by the "other silver" is signified other truth, consequently truth from another source (as there is no genuine truth but that which is from the Lord, who bestows it gratuitously, so truth itself is from no other source); and from the signification of "bringing down," as being a disposition for procuring, namely, the good of truth which is signified by the corn they were to buy. The historical sense of the letter implies that the other silver also came to Joseph to buy food from him, and therefore did not come from any other source. But the internal sense does not abide in the historical sense of the letter, for which it does not care, but abides in the subject that is being treated of; and the subject is, that if they were to be subjected as servants because some truths in the exterior natural had been bestowed gratuitously, they would procure good by means of truth from some other source. Such also is the series in the internal sense, for it is presently said, "We know not who put our silver in our bags," by which is signified that they would not believe, because they did not know what was the source of the truth in the exterior natural.  Something similar takes place in the other life with spirits who are being initiated into good by means of truths, and especially into this one-that all good and truth flow in from the Lord. When they perceive that everything they think and will flows into them, thus that they have no power to think and to will from themselves, they resist as much as they can, believing that if this were so they would have no life of their own, and thereby that all delight would perish, for they vest this in what is their own. Besides, if they cannot do good or believe truth of themselves, they suppose they should let go their hands, doing and thinking nothing from themselves, and should wait for influx. They are permitted to think so, even to the extent of almost coming to the conclusion that they do not desire to receive good and truth from this source, but from some other by which there would not be such a loss of what is their own; and sometimes it is given them to inquire where they may find it. Yet afterward when they find it nowhere, those who are being regenerated come back, and in freedom choose to be led by the Lord in their willing and thinking. They are then informed that they will receive an own that is heavenly, such as angels have, and with this own, also blessedness and happiness to eternity.  As regards the own that is heavenly, this comes forth from the new will that is given by the Lord, and differs from the man's own in the fact that they who have it no longer regard themselves in each and all things they do, and in each and all things they learn or teach; but they then have regard to the neighbor, the public, the church, the Lord's kingdom, and thereby to the Lord Himself. It is the ends of life that are changed. The ends that look to lower things, that is, to self and the world, are removed, and ends that look to higher things are substituted in their place. The ends of life are nothing else than the man's life itself, for they are his very will and loves, because what a man loves he wills and has for his end. He who is gifted with an own that is heavenly is also in quietude and in peace; for he trusts in the Lord, and believes that nothing of evil will reach him, and knows that concupiscences will not infest him. And besides, they who are in the heavenly own are in freedom itself; for to be led by the Lord is freedom, because they are led in good, by good, to good. From this it is evident that they are in blessedness and happiness, for there is nothing that disturbs them, nothing of the love of self, consequently nothing of enmity, hatred, and revenge; nor is there anything of the love of the world, consequently nothing of fraud, of fear, of unrest.5661.
We know not who put our silver in our bags. That this signifies non-belief, from ignorance of the source of truth in the exterior natural, is evident from the signification of "not knowing," as being in the spiritual sense not believing or non-belief; from the signification of "who put," as being ignorance from what source; from the signification of "silver," as being truth (see n. 5658); and from the signification of a "bag," as being the exterior natural (n. 5497).5662.
And he said, Peace be to you, fear not. That this signifies that it is well, let them not despair, is evident from the signification of "peace," as being to be well (of which in what follows); and from the signification of "fear not," as being let them not despair. For the internal sense treats of a change of state, in that they no longer procure truths and through them good by their own power; but are presented with them from the Lord. And because they supposed that they would thus lose their own, thus freedom, and consequently all the delight of life, they were in despair, as is plain from what has gone before. Hence it is that "fear not" here signifies let them not despair; for fear arises from various causes (see n. 5647), and therefore also signifies various things.  That "peace" denotes it is well, is because it is the inmost, and hence the universally reigning thing, in each and all things in heaven; for peace in heaven is like spring on earth, or like the dawn, which does not affect us by sensible changes, but by a universal pleasantness that flows into everything that is perceived, and fills with this pleasantness not only the perception itself but also the several objects. At the present day scarcely anyone knows the meaning of "peace" where mentioned in the Word, as in the benediction, "Jehovah lift up His faces upon thee, and give thee peace" (Num. 6:26); and in other places. Almost everyone believes peace to be security from enemies, and also tranquillity at home and among companions. Such peace is not meant in this passage, but a peace which immeasurably transcends it - the heavenly peace just now spoken of. This peace can be bestowed on no one unless he is led by the Lord and is in the Lord, that is, in heaven where the Lord is all in all; for heavenly peace flows in when the cupidities arising from the love of self and the love of the world are taken away. These are what take peace away, for they infest man's interiors, and at last cause him to make rest consist in unrest, and peace in annoyances, because his delight is in evils. So long as man is in these he cannot possibly know what peace is, nay, he so long believes that such peace is nothing; and if anyone says that it becomes perceptible when the delights from the love of self and the world are taken away, he laughs, because he makes peace consist in the delight of evil, which is the opposite of peace.  Because such is the nature of peace, namely, the inmost of all happinesses and blessednesses, and hence the universal that reigns in them all, therefore the ancients used as a common form of speech the words, "Peace be unto you," when they meant that it be well; and asked whether people "had peace" when they meant "Is it well?" See what has been said and shown above in regard to peace, namely: That peace in heaven is like spring and the dawn on earth (n. 1726, 2780): That peace in the supreme sense is the Lord, in the representative sense His kingdom, and that it is the Lord's Divine affecting with good from the inmost (n. 3780, 4681): That all unrest is from evil and falsity, but peace from good and truth (n. 3170).5663.
Your God, and the God of your father. That this signifies the Lord's Divine Human may be seen from the fact that where "God" or "Jehovah" is mentioned in the Word, the Lord and no one else is meant (see n. 1343, 1736, 2921, 3035); and when it is said "your God and the God of your father" that is, the God of Israel and of Jacob and his sons, it means the Lord's Divine Human, and indeed as to the Divine natural (n. 3305, 4286, 4570); for Israel represented the Lord as to the interior natural, Jacob as to the exterior, and his sons as to the truths in this natural.  That the Lord was meant in the Word by "God" and "Jehovah" the Jewish Church did not know, nor does the Christian Church know it at this day. That the Christian Church has not known it is because it has distinguished the Divinity into three persons. But the Ancient Church which was after the flood, and above all the Most Ancient Church which was before the flood, understood by "Jehovah" and "God" no other than the Lord, and Him indeed as to His Divine Human. They also knew about the Divine Itself which is in the Lord, and which He calls His "Father" yet they were not able to think about that Divine Itself which is in the Lord, but about the Divine Human, and consequently could not be conjoined with any other Divine; for conjunction is effected through thought which is of the understanding and affection which is of the will, thus through faith and through love. For if we think of the Divine Itself, the thought falls as it were into a boundless universe, and thus is dissipated, whence there is no conjunction. It is otherwise when the Divine Itself is thought of as the Divine Human. And the ancients knew that they could not be saved unless they were conjoined with the Divine.  Therefore it was the Divine Human that the Ancient Churches worshiped; and Jehovah also manifested Himself to them in the Divine Human. The Divine Human was the Divine Itself in heaven; for heaven constitutes one man, which is called the Grand Man, as has been heretofore shown at the end of the chapters. This Divine in heaven is none other than the Divine Itself, but in heaven it is as a Divine Man. This Man is what the Lord took on and made Divine in Him, and united it to the Divine Itself as it had been united from eternity; for from eternity there was a one. He did this because mankind could not otherwise have been saved; for it was no longer sufficient for the Divine Itself to be able, through heaven and thus through the Divine Human Itself there, to flow into human minds; wherefore the Divine Itself willed to unite the Divine Human to Itself actually by the Human taken on in the world. The one and the other is the Lord.5664.
Gave you a hidden gift in your bags. That this signifies that it was from Him without any prudence of theirs, is evident from the signification of a "hidden gift," as being the truth and good that are given by the Lord without the man's knowing it; and from the signification of "silver brought back in the sacks or bags," as being without any ability of theirs (see n. 5488, 5496, 5499). From this it is plain that by "gave you a hidden gift in your bags" is signified that from Him, namely from the Lord's Divine Human, is truth and good in the natural without any ability of theirs; and because it is without their ability, it is without their prudence. The word "prudence" is used, because prudence corresponds to providence, and that which is of the Divine providence is not of man's prudence. 5664a. Your silver came to me. That this signifies that it will seem as truth procured by them, is evident from the signification of "silver," as being truth (n. 1551, 2954). Their "silver coming to him" means that they bought, and thus that they themselves procured; for "to buy" is to procure (n. 5655). Thus by "your silver came to me" is signified truth procured by them; but as the truth which is of faith is never procured by any man, but is instilled and given by the Lord, and yet seems as if acquired by man, it is said that it will seem as truth procured by them.  It is known in the church that truth is instilled and given by the Lord; for it is taught that faith is not from man but from God; thus not only confidence, but also the truths of faith are from Him. Still it appears as if the truths of faith were procured by the man, for he is profoundly ignorant that they flow in, because he does not perceive it. The reason why he does not perceive it is that his interiors are closed, so that he cannot have perceptible communication with spirits and angels; and when the interiors are closed the man can know nothing whatever about influx.  Be it known, however, that it is one thing to know the truths of faith, and quite another to believe them. They who merely know the truths of faith, charge their memory with them just as they do with the facts of any other branch of knowledge. These truths man can procure for himself without such an influx, but they have no life, as is plain from the fact that an evil man, even the worst, can know the truths of faith just as much as an upright and pious man. But as before said with the evil these truths have no life; for when an evil man brings them forth he regards in everyone of them either self-glory or gain; so that it is the love of self and of the world that inflates them and makes a sort of life; but it is such life as there is in hell, which is called spiritual death. Hence it is that when he brings them forth, he brings them forth from the memory, and not from the heart, whereas he who believes the truths of faith brings them forth from the heart at the same time as from the lips; for with him the truths of faith are so deeply rooted in as to have their root in the outer memory, and to grow from there toward what is interior or higher, like fruit-bearing trees; and like trees they deck themselves with leaves, and at last with blossoms, for the sake of the end of bearing fruit. So it is with such a man.  He also aims at nothing else through the truths of faith than uses, which are the practices of charity, which to him are the fruits. These are the truths which man cannot procure for himself, even in the smallest degree; but they are gratuitously bestowed on him by the Lord, and this in every moment of his life, nay, if he will believe it, without number in every moment. But as man is of such a nature as to have no perception of their flowing in, for as before said if he had the perception he would resist, because he would believe that he would then lose his own, and with his own his freedom, and with his freedom his delight, and would thus become a thing of nought, it is therefore brought about that man does not know but that he procures truths of himself. This then is what is meant by saying that it will seem as truth procured by them. Moreover, in order that a heavenly own and heavenly freedom may be bestowed on man, he must needs do good as of himself and think what is true as of himself; but when he reflects he should acknowledge that these are from the Lord (see n. 2882, 2883, 2891).5665.
And he brought Simeon out unto them. That this signifies that he adjoined will to truths, is evident from the representation of Simeon, as being faith in the will, or the will to do the truth which is of faith (see n. 3869-3872, 4497, 4502, 4503, 5482); and from the representation of the sons of Jacob, who are they unto whom he brought out Simeon, as being the truths of the church in the natural (n. 5403, 5419, 5427, 5458, 5512). From this it is plain that his "bringing Simeon out unto them" signifies that he adjoined will to truths.5666.
Verses 24-28. And the man brought the men to Joseph's house, and gave waters, and they washed their feet; and he gave their asses provender. And they made ready the present against Joseph came at noon; for they heard that they should eat bread there. And Joseph came to the house, and they brought him the present which was in their hand to the house, and bowed down themselves to him to the earth. And he asked them to peace, and said, Is there peace to your father, the old man of whom ye spoke? Is he yet alive? And they said, There is peace to thy servant our father; he is yet alive. And they bent themselves and bowed themselves down. "And the man brought the men to Joseph's house," signifies initiation to conjunction with the internal; "and gave waters," signifies a general influx of truth from the internal; "and they washed their feet," signifies a consequent purifying of the natural; "and he gave their asses provender," signifies instruction concerning good; "and they made ready the present," signifies instilling; "against Joseph came at noon," signifies until the internal should be present with light; "for they heard that they should eat bread there," signifies a noticing that good would be adjoined to truths; "and Joseph came to the house," signifies the presence of the internal; "and they brought him the present which was in their hand to the house," signifies instilling as far as possible; "and bowed down themselves to him to the earth," signifies humiliation; "and he asked them to peace," signifies perception that it is well; "and said, Is there peace to your father, the old man of whom ye spoke," signifies also with spiritual good; "is he yet alive," signifies that it has life; "and they said, There is peace to thy servant our father," signifies a noticing therefrom of the natural that it is well with the good from which it comes; "he is yet alive," signifies and that it has life; "and they bent themselves and bowed themselves down," signifies outward and inward humiliation.5667.
And the man brought the men to Joseph's house. That this signifies initiation to conjunction with the internal, is evident from the signification of "bringing the men to Joseph's house," as being to adjoin to the internal the truths belonging to the natural (of which above, n. 5648). That initiation to conjunction is signified, is clear from what follows-that they ate there, and that Joseph did not then manifest himself to them; by which is signified a general influx, which is now described, and which also is initiation.5668.
And gave waters. That this signifies a general influx of truth from the internal, is evident from the signification of "waters," as being truth (see n. 2702, 3058, 3424, 4976), and indeed truth in general. Hence "giving waters" signifies a general influx of truth. That it is from the internal, is because it was in Joseph's house (n. 5667). A general influx of truth is the enlightenment which gives the capacity of apprehending and understanding truth. This enlightenment is from the light of heaven that is from the Lord, which light is nothing else than the Divine truth (see n. 2776, 3138, 3167, 3195, 3223, 3339, 3485, 3636, 3643, 3993, 4302, 4413, 4415, 5400).5669.
And they washed their feet. That this signifies a consequent purifying of the natural, is evident from the signification of "washing the feet," as being the purifying of the natural (see n. 3147).5670.
And he gave their asses provender. That this signifies instruction concerning good, is evident from the signification of "giving provender," as being to instruct in good; for by "provender" is signified the good of the truths of memory-knowledges (see n. 3114); and by "giving provender," which is "feeding," is signified to instruct in this good (that "feeding" is instructing, see n. 5201; and by "asses" are signified memory-knowledges, see n. 5492). From this it is plain that by "giving asses provender" is signified instruction about the good of memory-knowledges. The good of memory-knowledges is the delight from the truths of these knowledges. The truths of memory-knowledges are most general truths, which appear in the natural light which is from the light of the world; but in order that they may appear (that is, as being truths), there must be a general influx from the internal (n. 5668). This is the enlightenment from the light of heaven.5671.
And they made ready the present. That this signifies instilling, is evident from the signification of a "present," as being to obtain favor (see n. 5619); thus "to make ready the present" is instilling.5672.
Against Joseph came at noon. That this signifies until the internal should be present with light, is evident from the signification of "against he came" as being when it should be present; from the representation of Joseph, as being the internal (see n. 5648); and from the signification of "noon," as being a state of light (n. 1458, 3195, 3708). That "noon" denotes a state of light is because the times of day, as morning, noon, and evening, correspond to the enlightenments in the other life, and the enlightenments there are those of intelligence and wisdom, for in the light of heaven there is intelligence and wisdom. There are alternations of enlightenment there, like morning, noon, and evening on earth. The states of shade, like those of evening, do not arise from the sun there, that is, the Lord, who is always giving light, but from the angels' own, for insofar as they are let into their own they come into a state of shade or evening, and insofar as they are lifted out of their own into a heavenly own, they come into a state of light. From this it is plain why noon corresponds to a state of light.5673.
For they heard that they should eat bread there. That this signifies a noticing that good would be adjoined to truths, is evident from the signification of "hearing," as being a noticing (see n. 5017); from the signification of "eating," as being to be appropriated and conjoined (see n. 2187, 3168, 3513, 3596, 3832, 5643); and from the signification of "bread," as being the good of love (see n. 2165, 2177, 2187, 3464, 3478, 3735, 3813, 4211, 4217, 4735, 4976).5674.
And Joseph came to the house. That this signifies the presence of the internal, is evident from the signification of "coming to the house," as being to be at hand, or presence (as above, n. 5672); and from the representation of Joseph, as being the internal (n. 5648).5675.
And they brought him the present which was in their hand to the house. That this signifies instilling as far as possible, is evident from the signification of the "present" that was given to kings and priests, as being to obtain favor; thus also instilling (of which just above, n. 5671); and from the signification of being "in their hands," as being as far as possible (of which also above, n. 5624, 5659).5676.
And bowed down themselves to him to the earth. That this signifies humiliation, is evident from the signification of "bowing down to the earth," as being to humble one's self (n. 2153, and also below, n. 5682).5677.
And he asked them to peace. That this signifies perception that it is well, is evident from the signification of "asking," as being to perceive another's thought (n. 5597); and from the signification of "peace," as being to be well (see n. 5662).5678.
And said, Is there peace to your father, the old man of whom ye spoke? That this signifies also with spiritual good, is evident from the signification of "peace," as being to be well (as above, n. 5677); and from the representation of Israel, who is the "father" here, as being spiritual good (n. 3654, 4286, 4598).5679.
Is he yet alive? That this signifies that it has life, is evident from the signification of "living," as being spiritual life (see n. 5407).5680.
And they said, There is peace to thy servant our father. That this signifies a noticing therefrom of the natural that it is well with the good from which it comes, is evident from the signification of "saying," as being to perceive (see n. 1898, 1919, 2080, 2619, 2862, 3395, 3509); from the signification of "peace," as being to be well (see n. 5662, 5677); and from the representation of Israel, as being spiritual good (of which just above, n. 5678). This good is called "father," because from it as from a father are the truths and goods in the natural which are represented by his ten sons; and because the truths and goods in the natural are represented by them, the natural also is signified by them; for the natural is the containant, and the truths and goods therein are the contents, which make a one. From this it is plain that by their saying "there is peace to thy servant our father," is signified a noticing therefrom of the natural that it is well with the good from which it comes. It is called a noticing therefrom, namely, from the internal, which is represented by Joseph (n. 5648), because all the perception of the natural comes from the spiritual, and because from the spiritual, it comes from the internal, that is, through the internal from the Lord. The natural never has any perception, nor even any life of thought and affection, except what comes from the spiritual; for in the natural all things are of themselves dead, but they are vivified by influx from the spiritual world, that is, through the spiritual world from the Lord. In the spiritual world all things live from the light which is from the Lord; for in this light is wisdom and intelligence. That here there is signified a noticing therefrom, or from the internal in the natural, follows also from what has been said above (n. 5677).5681.
He is yet alive. That this signifies, and that it has life, is evident from what was adduced just above (see n. 5679; compare also n. 5407).5682.
And they bent themselves and bowed themselves down. That this signifies outward and inward humiliation, is evident from the signification of "bending themselves," as being outward humiliation; and from the signification of "bowing themselves down," as being inward humiliation; for bending is a less degree of bowing down, and therefore it denotes outward humiliation; and bowing down is a greater degree, and therefore it denotes inward humiliation. Moreover, "bending" denotes the humiliation of truth, that is, of those who are in truth, thus of the spiritual; and "bowing down" denotes the humiliation of good, that is, of those who are in good, thus of the celestial. In this case also "bending" is outward humiliation, and "bowing down" inward; for they who are in good are more interior men than those who are in truth. These things are what are contained in the internal sense of this period. Most of them have been unfolded simply as to the significations of the words, for the reason that they are such as have been previously unfolded.5683.
Verses 29-34. And he lifted up his eyes, and saw Benjamin his brother, his mother's son, and said, Is this your youngest brother, of whom ye spoke unto me? And he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son. And Joseph made haste, for his compassions were moved toward his brother; and he sought to weep, and he came to the bed-chamber, and wept there. And he washed his faces, and went out, and he restrained himself and said, Set on bread. And they set on for him alone, and for them alone, and for the Egyptians, who did eat with him, alone; because the Egyptians cannot eat bread with the Hebrews; because this is an abomination to the Egyptians. And they sat before him, the firstborn according to his birthright, and the youngest according to his youth; and the men were amazed, everyone at his companion. And he brought out portions from his faces unto them; and he multiplied Benjamin's portion above the portions of them all, five measures. And they drank and drank largely with him. "And he lifted up his eyes," signifies reflection; "and saw Benjamin," signifies a noticing of the intermediate "his brother, his mother's son," signifies the internal from the natural, as from a mother; "and said," signifies perception; "Is this your youngest brother, of whom ye spoke unto me?" signifies the one born after all, as was also known to them; "and he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son," signifies that the Divine is also with the spiritual of the celestial, which is the intermediate, because it proceeds from the celestial of the spiritual, which is truth from the Divine; "and Joseph made haste," signifies from the inmost; "for his compassions were moved," signifies mercy from love; "toward his brother," signifies toward the internal from itself; "and he sought to weep," signifies the effect of mercy from love; "and he came to the bed chamber, and wept there," signifies in itself, not apparently; "and he washed his faces," signifies that it is so arranged; "and went out," signifies by removal; "and he restrained himself," signifies by concealment; "and said, Set on bread," signifies perception of conjunction through the intermediate with truths in the natural; "and they set on for him alone, and for them alone," signifies outward appearance that the internal was as if separated from them; "and for the Egyptians, who did eat with him, alone," signifies separation of the memory-knowledges that are in inverted order; "because the Egyptians cannot eat bread with the Hebrews," signifies that they could not possibly be conjoined with the truth and good of the church; "because this is an abomination to the Egyptians," signifies that they are in opposition; "and they sat before him," signifies that they were set in order by his presence; "the firstborn according to his birthright, and the youngest according to his youth," signifies according to the order of truths under good; "and the men were amazed, everyone at his companion," signifies a change of state of each one among them; "and he brought out portions from his faces unto them," signifies goods applied to each one from mercy; "and he multiplied Benjamin's portion above the portions of them all," signifies good for the intermediate above the goods for the truths in the natural; "five measures," signifies much increased; "and they drank," signifies the application of truths under good; "and drank largely with him," signifies abundantly.5684.
And he lifted up his eyes. That this signifies reflection, is evident from the signification of "lifting up the eyes," as being thought and attention (see n. 2789, 2829, 4339), and also observation (n. 4086). Thus it denotes reflection; for to reflect is to concentrate the intellectual sight, and to observe whether a thing is so, and then that it is so.5685.
And saw Benjamin. That this signifies a noticing of the intermediate, is evident from the signification of "seeing," as being to understand and notice (see n. 2150, 2325, 3764, 3863, 4403-4421, 4567, 4723, 5400); and from the representation of Benjamin, as being the intermediate (see n. 5411, 5413, 5443, 5639).5686.
His brother, his mother's son. That this signifies the internal from the natural as from a mother, is evident from the representation of Benjamin, who is here the "brother" and "mother's son," as being the internal (see n. 5469); and as he is the intermediate he therefore comes forth from the celestial of the spiritual, which is "Joseph," as from a father, and from the natural as from a mother; for he must partake of both in order to serve as an intermediate. This then is what is meant by the internal from the natural as from a mother. And because the celestial of the spiritual, which is "Joseph," in like manner came forth from the natural as a mother, but from the Divine as a father, Benjamin is therefore called his "brother, the son of his mother," as indeed he was by birth. And presently he is called also his "son." The Lord, who is meant here by "Joseph" in the supreme sense, calls everyone a "brother" who has anything of the good of charity from the Lord. He is also called the "son of His mother," but then by "mother" is meant the church.5687.
And said. That this signifies perception, is evident from the signification of "saying" in the historicals of the Word, as being perception (of which often above). That "saying" is perceiving, is because in heaven the very thoughts from which the speech comes are perceived, otherwise than is the case in the world. Hence it is that "perceiving" in the spiritual sense is "speaking" or "saying" in the literal, or what is the same, the natural sense.5688.
Is this your youngest brother, of whom ye spoke unto me? That this signifies the one born after all, as was also known to them, is evident from the signification of the "youngest brother," as being the one born after all (of which in what follows); and from the signification of the words "of whom ye spoke unto me," as being what was perceived by them. (That "to speak" denotes what is perceived, thus what is known, may be seen just above, n. 5687.) That Benjamin is here called, as he was, their "youngest brother," that is, the one born after all or the youngest in birth, is because it is similar in the spiritual sense with the intermediate which Benjamin represents; for the intermediate is born in man last of all, because when a man is born spiritually, that is, when he is reborn, his rational, which is the internal human, is first regenerated by the Lord, and afterward his natural (see n. 3286, 3288, 3321, 3493, 4612); and as the intermediate partakes of both (of the rational made spiritual, or made new, and also of the natural), and as it cannot take anything from the natural unless this also is made new, therefore the intermediate cannot be born till afterward, and indeed according to the degree in which the natural is being regenerated.  All things that are related in the Word of Jacob's sons had so come to pass of Providence, in order that the Word might be written about them and their descendants, and might contain within it heavenly things, and in the supreme sense Divine things, which they would represent in actual life. So also was it with Benjamin, who being born last, would therefore represent the intermediate between the internal and the external, or between the celestial of the spiritual which the Lord had in the world, and the natural which the Lord also had and was to make Divine.  All that is related of Joseph and his brethren represents in the supreme sense the glorifying of the Lord's Human, that is, how the Lord made the Human in Him Divine. The reason for this being represented in the inmost sense is that the Word might be most holy in its inmost sense, and also that it might contain in every part of it what would enter into the wisdom of the angels; for it is known that angelic wisdom so far surpasses human intelligence that scarcely anything of it can be apprehended by man. It is also the happiness itself of the angels that every detail of the Word has reference to the Lord; for they are in the Lord. Furthermore, the glorifying of the Lord's Human is the pattern of man's regeneration, and hence man's regeneration also is presented in the internal sense of the Word at the same time with the glorification of the Lord. Man's regeneration together with its innumerable mysteries also enters into the angels' wisdom, and affords them happiness according as they apply it to its uses, which are for man's reformation.5689.
And he said, God be gracious unto thee, my son. That this signifies that the Divine was also with the spiritual of the celestial, which is the intermediate, because it proceeds from the celestial of the spiritual, which is truth from the Divine, is evident from the signification of "God be gracious," when it is said by the celestial of the spiritual which is "Joseph," to the spiritual of the celestial which is "Benjamin," and when the latter is also called his "son," which means that the Divine is also with the spiritual of the celestial, which is an intermediate because it proceeds from the celestial of the spiritual which is truth from the Divine. (That "Benjamin" is the spiritual of the celestial may be seen above, n. 3969, 4592; and also that this is an intermediate, n. 5411, 5413, 5443, 5639.)  As in the supreme sense, as before said, the Lord's internal human was the celestial of the spiritual, and this was truth from the Divine, or the first clothing of the Divine Itself in the Lord, and as the spiritual of the celestial, which is the intermediate, proceeded therefrom, it follows that the Divine was also with this. That which proceeds from anything derives its essence from that from which it proceeds; but it is clothed with such things as serve for communication, thus for use in a lower sphere. The things with which it is clothed are taken from such as are in the lower sphere, to the end that the internal from which it proceeds may act in the lower sphere by such means as are there.  That which gives the essence is as the father, for the essence is the soul; and that which gives the clothing is the mother, for the clothing is the body of this soul. This is the reason why it was said above that the intermediate must draw from both in order to be an intermediate; what it has from the internal being as its father, and what it has from the external being as its mother.5690.
And Joseph made haste. That this signifies from the inmost, is evident from the signification of "making haste," as here being what bursts forth from the inmost; because there follows, "for his compassions were moved," by which is signified mercy from love. When this bursts forth, it bursts forth from the inmost, and this at the first glance of the eye or at the first instant of thought; wherefore by "making haste" here nothing else is signified than from the inmost.5691.
For his compassions were moved. That this signifies mercy from love, is evident from the signification of the "compassions being moved," as being mercy from love; it is said "mercy," because he was not yet acknowledged by him, and "from love," because as an intermediate he had proceeded from him. In the original language "compassions" is expressed by a word which signifies the inmost and tenderest love.5692.
Toward his brother. That this signifies toward the internal from itself, is evident from the representation of Benjamin, who is here the "brother," as being the intermediate, thus also the internal (see n. 5649); and as both the intermediate and the internal proceed from the celestial of the spiritual, which is "Joseph," it is therefore called the internal from itself. Whoever receives anything of the Divine from the Lord, who here is "Joseph" in the supreme sense, as he who receives any of the good of charity, is called by the Lord a "brother," and also a "son."5693.
And he sought to weep. That this signifies the emotion of mercy from love, is evident from the signification of "weeping," as being the effect of mercy from love (see n. 3801, 5480).5694.
And he came to the bed-chamber, and wept there. That this signifies in itself, not apparently, is evident from the signification of "coming to the bed-chamber," as being in one's self, so as not to appear. It was customary with the ancients to speak of "entering into the chamber," and also of then "shutting the door," when they meant the doing of anything that was not to appear. This form of speaking was derived from the significatives in the Ancient Church; for by "house" in the spiritual sense they understood man (see n. 3128), and by the "rooms" and "bed-chambers" they understood man's interiors. Therefore "coming or entering into the chamber" signified to be in one's self, consequently so as not to appear; and because "entering the chamber" was significative, it is therefore frequently mentioned in the Word, as in Isaiah: Go, My people, enter into thy bed-chambers, and shut thy door after thee; hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the anger be overpast (Isa. 26:20); that "entering into the bed-chambers" does not here mean to do so literally, but to keep one's self in concealment, and in one's self, is very evident.  In Ezekiel: He said unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the chambers of his image? For they say, Jehovah seeth us not (Ezek. 8:12); where "to do in the dark, every man in the chambers of his image" denotes inwardly within themselves, in the thoughts. The interior things of their thought and affection were represented to the prophet by chambers, and were called "chambers of the image."  In Moses: Abroad shall the sword bereave, and out of the chambers terror, both young man and virgin, the suckling with the old man (Deut. 32:25); where the "sword" denotes the vastation of truth and the punishment of falsity (see n. 2799); "terror out of the chambers" denotes out of man's interiors. That the "chambers" here are not the chambers that are meant is evident.  In David: Who watereth the mountains from His chambers (Ps. 104:13); "to water the mountains" in the spiritual sense is to bless those who are in love to the Lord, and in love toward the neighbor (that a "mountain" is the celestial of love, see n. 795, 1430, 4210); hence "from His chambers" is from the interiors of heaven. In Luke: Whatsoever ye have spoken in the darkness shall be heard in the light, and that which ye have spoken in the ear in the bed-chambers shall be proclaimed upon the roofs (Luke 12:3); where also "bed-chambers" denote the interiors of man, namely, what he has thought, what he has purposed, and what he has endeavored to do. In Matthew: When thou prayest, enter into thy bed-chamber, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray in secret (Matt. 6:6); "to enter into the bed-chamber and pray" means not in the outward appearance; for this was said representatively.5695.
And he washed his faces. That this signifies that it so arranged, is evident from the signification of "washing the faces," as here being to arrange so as not to appear; for the face was washed that no trace of tears might appear; consequently it was arranged in this way. How the case is with these things will of the Lord's Divine mercy be told in the following pages. Here something must be said about the correspondence of the face with the interiors. The face is the external representative of the interiors, for the face is so formed that the interiors may appear in it as in a representative mirror, and that another may know from it of what mind the person is toward him; so that when he speaks he shows his feelings by his face as well as by his words. The most ancient people, who were of the celestial church, had a face like this; and all the angels have it, for they have no desire to conceal from others what they think, because they think well and only well toward the neighbor, nor have they any lurking thought of wishing well to the neighbor for the sake of themselves. But the infernals, when not seen in the light of heaven, have a different face from that which corresponds to their interiors. The reason is that in the life of the body their faces had shown charity toward the neighbor, merely for the sake of their own honor and gain, and yet they had never wished well to the neighbor except insofar as he favored them. The result is that the makeup of their faces is so much out of agreement with their interiors that sometimes enmities, hatreds, revenges, and murderous feeling are within, while their faces are made up so as to beam with love toward the neighbor. This shows how great at the present day is the disagreement between the interiors and the exteriors, resulting in the cultivation of such arts.5696.
And went out. That this signifies by removal, is evident from the signification of "going out," as here being removal; for one who removes himself goes out or withdraws from another. The case in the internal sense is this. By Joseph in the supreme sense is represented the Lord; by the ten sons of Israel are represented the truths and goods in the natural with those who are being regenerated; and by Benjamin is represented the intermediate. There is mercy from love toward the intermediate because thereby the things beneath are regenerated. But the Lord's love and mercy do not appear until conjunction through the intermediate has been effected. It is also so arranged that they do not appear; for should they appear, regeneration could not be effected. This arrangement is made by removal and concealment-not that the Lord ever removes or conceals mercy; but when one who is being regenerated is let into his evils, it appears to him as if the Lord were remote and hidden. It is the evils that interpose and have this effect, just as dense clouds interpose between us and the sun, and make it seem distant and hide it. This is the concealment and removal that are meant.5697.
And he restrained himself. That this signifies concealment, is evident from the signification of "restraining one's self," as being to conceal; for he who restrains himself conceals what he inwardly wills. What is here meant by concealment may be seen just above (n. 5696).5698.
And said, Set on bread. That this signifies perception of conjunction through the intermediate with truths in the natural, is evident from the signification of "saying," as being perception (of which often above); and from the signification of "setting on bread," as being conjunction through the intermediate with truths in the natural. By the setting on of bread is meant the banquet itself, and by banquets and feasts is signified conjunction, specifically initiation to conjunction (n. 3596, 3832, 5161). That it is a conjunction through the intermediate with truths in the natural, follows from the series, for "Benjamin" is the intermediate, and the ten sons of Jacob are truths in the natural, as has already been shown; and because the conjunction is through the intermediate, on seeing Benjamin Joseph commanded that they should eat with him-"and when Joseph saw Benjamin with them, he said to him that was over his house, Bring the men to the house, and slaying slay, and make ready; for the men shall eat with me at noon" (Gen. 43:16).5699.
And they set on for him alone, and for them alone. That this signifies an outward appearance that the internal was as if separated from them, is evident from the signification of "setting on for him alone, and for them alone," as being separation; and as the internal is represented by Joseph, and the external by Israel's ten sons (see n. 5469), therefore by these words is signified the separation of the internal from the external, but only in appearance, because he gave them food from his own table, sending portions to each.5700.
And for the Egyptians, who did eat with him, alone. That this signifies the separation of the memory-knowledges which are in inverted order, is evident from the representation of the Egyptians, as being memory-knowledges that are in inverted order (of which hereafter); and from the signification of "who did eat with him alone," as being separation (as just above, n. 5699). By the Egyptians "who did eat with him" are meant the Egyptians who ate at Joseph's house; that they did not eat with Joseph is plain, because they ate alone. By "Egypt" or the "Egyptians" in a good sense are signified the memory-knowledges of the church (see n. 1462, 4749, 4964, 4966); but in the opposite sense are signified the memory-knowledges which are in inverted order, thus which are contrary to the truths of the church (n. 1164, 1165, 1186). In this sense "Egypt" is mentioned in many passages of the Word. That "Egypt" signifies these memory-knowledges, is because the memory- knowledges of the Ancient Church, which were representative and significative of celestial and spiritual things, and which were cultivated among the Egyptians more than among others, were turned by them into magic; whereby they completely inverted the memory-knowledges of the representative church.  Memory-knowledges are said to be in inverted order when men abuse heavenly order to do evil; for heavenly order is that good be done to all. Hence it comes to pass that when they have thus inverted heavenly order, they at last deny Divine things, the things of heaven, and consequently those of charity and faith. They who become such know how to reason acutely and skillfully from memory-knowledges, because they reason from the senses, and to reason from these is to reason from such things as are external, that is, from such as are of the body and the world, which take direct hold of man's senses and feelings. Unless such things have been illumined by the light of heaven, and thereby arranged in an entirely different order, they put the man in so great an obscurity as to heavenly things that he not only comprehends none of them, but even wholly denies, and at last rejects them, and then as far as he may, blasphemes them. When memory-knowledges are in order, they are arranged by the Lord in the form of heaven; but when they are in inverted order, they are arranged in the form of hell, and then things most false are in the midst, and those which confirm them are at the sides, while truths are without, and because they are without they can have no communication with heaven where truths reign; and therefore interior things are closed to such persons; for heaven is open by means of things interior.