(AC) - A Disclosure of the Hidden Treasures of Heaven Contained in the Holy Scripture or Word of the Lord, Together with Amazing Things Seen in the World of Spirits and in the Heaven of Angels

AC 1159

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1159. Everyone according to his tongue, according to their families, as to their nations. That this signifies that these were according to the genius of each; "according to their tongue," according to the opinion of each; "according to their families," according to their uprightness; and "as to their nations," as regards both in general, may be seen from the signification of "tongue," of "families," and of "nations," in the Word; concerning which of the Lord's Divine mercy hereafter. That "tongue," or "language," in the internal sense, signifies opinion, thus principles and persuasions, is because there is a correspondence of the tongue with the intellectual part of man, or with his thought, like that of an effect with its cause. Such also is not only the influx of a man's thoughts into the movements of the tongue in speaking, but also the influx of heaven, concerning which some things from experience, by the Divine mercy of the Lord, will be told elsewhere.
[2] That "families" in the internal sense signify uprightness, and also charity and love, comes from the fact that in the heavens all things which are of mutual love are circumstanced as are relationships by blood and by marriage, thus as families (see n. 685). In the Word therefore the things which pertain to love or charity are expressed by "houses," and also by "families," which it is unnecessary here to stop to confirm. (That such is the signification of a "house" may be seen at n. 710.)
[3] That "nations" here signify both, in general, is evident from the signification of a nation, or nations, in the Word. In a good sense "nations" signify things of the new will and understanding, consequently the goods of love and truths of faith; but in the opposite sense they signify evils and falsities; and in like manner so also do "houses," "families," and "tongues," as may be confirmed by very many passages from the Word. The reason is that the Most Ancient Church was distinguished into houses, families, and nations. A married pair with their children, and their menservants and maidservants, constituted a house; a number of houses that were not far distant from one another constituted a family; and a number of families, a nation. Hence "nations" signified all the families taken together in the aggregate. It is much the same in heaven; but the relation of all there is according to love and faith toward the Lord (see n. 685).
[4] From this then comes the signification of "nations" in the internal sense, as a general term comprising things of both the will and the understanding, or what is the same of both love and faith; but relatively to the families and houses of which they are composed. (See also what has been said before concerning this subject, n. 470, 471, 483.) It is evident from these considerations that "nations" signify both [opinion and uprightness] in general; and that "everyone according to his tongue, according to their families, as to their nations," signifies according to the genius of each man, family, and nation, to whom worship was derived from the Ancient Church.


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