6989. Or deaf. That this signifies no perception of truth, and consequently no obedience, is evident from the signification of the "deaf," as being those who do not perceive what truth is, and consequently do not obey; thus abstractedly, no perception of truth, and consequently no obedience. That the "deaf" have this signification is because hearing corresponds both to perception and to obedience - to perception because what is heard is inwardly perceived, and to obedience because it is thence known what ought to be done. (That this is the correspondence of hearing, and also of the ear, see n. 3869, 4652-4660, 5017.) Hence it is evident what is signified by the "deaf." In the Word by the "deaf" are also signified the nations which do not know the truths of faith, because they have not the Word, and therefore they cannot live according to these truths; nevertheless when they have been instructed, they receive them and live according to them. These are meant in Isaiah:
Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be opened (Isa. 35:5).
Hear ye deaf, and look ye blind, seeing (Isa. 42:18).
In that day the deaf shall hear the words of the book; and out of thick darkness, and out of darkness, the eyes of the blind shall see (Isa. 29:18).
Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears (Isa. 43:8);
by the "deaf" are here meant those who by the coming of the Lord came into a state of receiving the truths of faith, that is, of perceiving them and obeying them. The same are signified by the "deaf" whom the Lord healed (Mark 7:31 seq.; 9:25). Because the "deaf" signified such, it was forbidden those with whom the representative church was instituted "to curse the deaf and to put a stumbling-block before the blind" (Lev. 19:14).