320. Verse 8. And I saw, and behold, a pale horse, signifies the understanding of the Word destroyed both as to good and as to truth. "A horse" signifies the understanding of the Word (n. 298), and "pale" signifies no vitality. In the Word, this want of vitality is predicated of those who are not in goods of life from truths of doctrine; for the Word, in the sense of the letter, is not understood without doctrine, and doctrine is not perceived without a life according to it; the reason is, because a life according to doctrine which is from the Word, opens the spiritual mind, when light flows into it from heaven and enlightens and gives to perceive. That this is the case, he does not know who knows truths of doctrine, and yet does not live according to them.
The reason why "the fourth animal" showed "a pale horse," was, because that animal was like "a flying eagle," and by it was signified the Divine truth of the Word as to knowledges and understanding therefrom (n. 244). Therefore he showed that with those who were now seen there were no knowledges of good and truth from the Word, nor any understanding of them, and such in the spiritual world appear pale, like those who are without life.