Arcana Coelestia (Elliott) n. 1443

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1443. The implications of a first perception being meant by 'the oak-grove of Moreh' are as follows: Residing with man there are intellectual concepts, rational concepts, and factual knowledge. The intellectual concepts form the inmost parts of his mind, the rational concepts form the interior parts, and the factual knowledge forms the exterior parts. They are called his spiritual endowments, which occur in the order in which they have been mentioned. The intellectual concepts of the celestial man are compared to 'a garden consisting of trees of every kind'; rational concepts to 'a forest consisting of cedars and other trees like them', such as those that grow in Lebanon; while factual knowledge is compared to 'oak-groves' on account of the interlocking boughs that are a feature of oak trees. The trees themselves meant perceptions - 'the trees of the garden of Eden in the east' meant inmost perceptions, that is, those of intellectual concepts, as shown already in 99,100, 103; 'the trees of the forest of Lebanon' meant interior perceptions, that is, those of rational concepts, whereas 'oak trees' meant exterior perceptions, that is, those of facts that belong to the external man. This explains why 'the oak- grove of Moreh' means the Lord's first perception, for He was still only a boy and His spiritual powers had not yet developed interiorly. In addition the oak-grove of Moreh was also the place which the children of Israel came to first when they crossed the Jordan and saw the land of Canaan. Of this it is said in Moses,

You shall set the blessing on Mount Gerizim, and the curse on Mount Ebal. Are not these across the Jordan, beyond the road towards the seeing of the sun, in the land of the Canaanite who dwells in the plain towards Gilgal, beside the oak-groves of Moreh? Deut 11:29, 30.

These words as well mean the first experience of perception, for the entry of the children of Israel represents the entry of those who have faith into the Lord's kingdom.

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