10156. Who have brought them out from the land of Egypt. That this signifies salvation from hell by the Lord, is evident from the signification of "being brought out from the land of Egypt," as being to be liberated from hell (see n. 8866, 9197), thus to be saved. That by "the land of Egypt" is signified hell, is because by that land in the genuine sense is signified the natural and its memory-knowledge; and to be brought forth from the natural man and its memory-knowledge, and to be raised into the spiritual man and its intelligence and wisdom, is also to be brought forth from hell. For man is born natural, but becomes spiritual through regeneration; and if he does not become spiritual, he is in hell; for the memory-knowledge of the natural man, that is, of a man not regenerated, is in the light of the world; but the intelligence of the spiritual man, that is, of the regenerate man, is in the light of heaven. And so long as a man is only in the light of the world, he is in hell; but when he is at the same time in the light of heaven, he is in heaven.
 Moreover, those who are solely in natural memory-knowledge, and consequently in no other light than the light of the world, cannot possibly believe the things which are of heaven; and even if they wish to enter into them by means of their own light, which is called natural light, they meet as it were a thick darkness, which blinds them and makes what is heavenly appear as nothing; for that which appears in the mind like thick darkness is tantamount to nothing. Hence it is that the merely natural man, no matter how much he believes himself to surpass others in light, at heart denies Divine and heavenly things; which also is the reason why so many of the learned reduce themselves by their knowledges to such insanity; for many of them deny the things that belong to the faith of the church and of heaven more than the simple do. It is otherwise with those who suffer themselves to be raised by the Lord into the light of heaven; for these are first raised above the memory-knowledges that belong to the natural man; and then from the light of heaven they see the things which are in their natural man and are called memory-knowledges, and well discriminate among them, adopting those they comprehend and which are congruent, and rejecting or laying aside those they do not comprehend and which are incongruent. In a word, the case herein is this.
 So long as a man is merely natural, so long his interiors, which see from the light of heaven, are closed; and the exteriors, which see from the light of the world, are open; and then the man looks downward, that is, into the world and to himself, for all the things that belong to his will and thought converge thither; and wherever the man looks, there his heart turns, that is, his will and his love. But when a man becomes spiritual, then his interiors, which see from the light of heaven, are opened, and then the man looks upward, which is effected by means of an uplifting by the Lord; thus he looks into heaven and to the Lord. Thither also are raised all things that belong to his will and his thought; thus his heart, that is, his love.
 For man has been so created that in respect to his internal he is formed according to the image of heaven, and in respect to his external according to the image of the world (n. 6057, 9279), to the end that heaven and the world may be conjoined in man, and that thus through man the Lord can inflow out of heaven into the world, and can direct the world; in particular with each one, and in general with all; and thus can conjoin the two, and thereby cause that in the world also there may be an image of heaven. But when a man cares solely for the world, heaven is closed with him; whereas when he suffers himself to be raised by the Lord, then heaven is opened with him, and the world is subjected to him. And when this is the case, hell is separated and removed from him; and then for the first time the man knows what good is and what evil is; but not before. This is what is called "the image of God" with man (Gen. 1:27, 28).
 These things have been said that it may be known what the spiritual man is, and what the natural man, and that unless the merely natural man is made spiritual by the Lord, he is hell; consequently that it may be known why by "Egypt" is signified hell, seeing that by it is also signified the natural and its memory-knowledge. (That memory-knowledge is signified by "Egypt," see the places cited in n. 9340; and that from this it signifies the natural, n. 9391; and also hell, n. 8866, 9197.)