And He taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in His doctrine, Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow: And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred. And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. (Mark 4:2-9)
• How the case is with man’s rational in regard to multiplication and fruitfulness cannot be understood unless we know how the case is with influx, of which it may be said in a general way that in everyone there is an internal man, a rational man which is intermediate, and an external man, as before said. It is the internal man that is his inmost from which he is man, and by which he is distinguished from brute animals, which have not such an inmost; and it is as it were the door or entrance for the Lord, that is, for what is celestial and spiritual from the Lord, into man. What is going on there cannot be comprehended by the man, because it is above all his rational, from which he thinks. That rational which appears as man’s own is subject to this inmost, or to this internal man, and into this rational through the internal man there inflow from the Lord the heavenly things of love and of faith, and through this rational they inflow into the memory-knowledges that are in the external man; but the things that inflow are received in accordance with the state of each person.
• Now unless the rational submits itself to the Lord’s goods and truths, it either suffocates, or rejects, or perverts the things that flow in; and this is still more the case when they flow into the sensuous knowledges of the memory. This is what is meant by seed falling on a highway, or upon a rocky place, or among thorns, as the Lord teaches (Matt. 13:3-7; Mark 4:3-7; Luke 8:5-7). But when the rational submits itself and believes the Lord, that is, His Word, the rational is then like good ground or earth, into which the seed falls and bears much fruit.