272. Verse 18. And the thorn and the thistle shall it bring forth unto thee, and thou shalt eat the herb of the field. By the "thorn and the thistle" are meant curse and vastation; and by "thou shalt eat the herb of the field" is signified that he should live as a wild animal. Man lives like a wild animal when his internal man is so separated from his external as to operate upon it only in a most general manner, for man is man from what he receives through his internal man from the Lord, and is a wild animal from what he derives from the external man, which, separated from the internal, is in itself no other than a wild animal, having a similar nature, desires, appetites, phantasies, and sensations, and also similar organic forms. That nevertheless he is able to reason, and, as it seems to himself, acutely, he has from the spiritual substance by which he receives the influx of life from the Lord, which is however perverted in such a man, and becomes the life of evil, which is death. Hence he is called a dead man.