3882. And she stood still from bearing. That this signifies ascent by a ladder from the earth to Jehovah or the Lord, is evident from the signification of "bearing," or of "birth," as being truth and good; for these are births in the spiritual sense, inasmuch as man is regenerated or born anew by means of truth and good. These also are what are signified by the four sons born of Leah-Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah. "Reuben" signifies the truth which is the first of regeneration, or of the new birth; this is truth merely as to memory-knowledge, thus it is to know truth. "Simeon" signifies the truth which is the second of regeneration, or of the new birth; this is truth as to the will, thus it is to will truth. "Levi" signifies the truth which is the third of regeneration, or of the new birth; this is truth as to affection, thus it is to be affected with truth, which is the same thing as charity. But "Judah" signifies good, which is the fourth of regeneration, or of the new birth, and this is the celestial of love. When the regenerate man, or he who is born anew, arrives at this stage, the Lord appears to him, for he has then ascended from the lowest step, as by a ladder, up to the step where the Lord is.
 This also is the ascent which was signified by the ladder seen by Jacob in a dream, which stood upon the earth, whose top reached to heaven, and on which the angels of God ascended and descended, and upon which stood Jehovah or the Lord (concerning which see the foregoing chapter, verse 12). Hence it is evident that such is the signification of "standing still from bearing." That by "conceiving and bearing," here mentioned four times, is signified advancement from external to internal, or from truth to good, that is, from earth to heaven, may be seen above (n. 3860, 3868, 3874, 3879). Descent follows afterwards, for man cannot descend unless he has first ascended.
Descent is nothing else than looking at truth from good, as from a mountain upon which he has climbed, a man views the things which lie beneath. That he then can comprehend in one view innumerable things more than they who stand beneath or in the valley, is manifest; and the case is precisely the same with those who are in good (that is, in love to the Lord and in charity toward the neighbor), as compared with those who are only in truth, that is, in faith alone.