282. Inasmuch as this cherub was like an eagle, and the eagle appeared as flying, it shall he told also what "flying" signifies in the Word. "Flying" signifies circumspection and presence, because a bird when it flies looks all about from on high, and thus by its sight is present everywhere and round about. But when "flying" in the Word is attributed to Jehovah, it signifies omnipresence, because omnipresence is infinite circumspection and infinite presence. This then is why this cherub appeared "like an eagle flying;" for "cherubim" signify in general the Lord's Providence that the higher heavens be not approached except from the good of love and of charity; and this cherub signifies Divine intelligence (as was shown just above).
 That "flying" in the Word, in reference to the Lord signifies omnipresence, and in reference to men circumspection and presence, can be seen from the following passages. In David:
God rode upon a cherub, He did fly, and was borne upon the wings of the wind (Psalms 18:10; 2 Samuel 22:11).
"He rode upon a cherub" signifies the Divine Providence; "He did fly" signifies omnipresence in the spiritual world; "and was borne upon the wings of the wind" signifies omnipresence in the natural world. These words from David no one can understand except from the spiritual sense.
 In Isaiah:
As birds flying, so will Jehovah of Hosts protect Jerusalem (Isaiah 31:5).
Jehovah is said "to protect Jerusalem as birds flying," for "to protect" signifies the Divine Providence in respect to safe guard; "Jerusalem" signifies the church, and "birds flying," with which comparison is made, signify circumspection and presence, here, as attributed to the Lord, omnipresence.
 In Revelation:
I saw and I heard one angel flying, through midheaven, saying with a great voice, Woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth (Revelation 8:13).
In the same:
I saw another angel flying through midheaven, having the eternal gospel to proclaim unto the inhabitants of the earth (Revelation 14:6).
The former angel signifies the damnation of all who are in evils; and the other angel signifies the salvation of all who are in good; "flying" signifies circumspection on every side where they are.
 In Isaiah:
All the flocks of Arabia shall be gathered together unto thee, the rams of Nebaioth shall minister unto thee. Who are these that fly as a cloud, and as doves to the windows? (Isaiah 60:7-8).
This treats of the Lord's coming, and the illustration of the Gentiles at that time; and "the flocks of Arabia that shall be gathered together" signify the knowledges of truth and good; "the rams of Nebaioth that shall minister" signify the truths that guide the life from a spiritual affection; "to fly as a cloud and as doves to the windows" signifies examination and scrutiny of truth from the sense of the letter of the Word; therefore "to fly" signifies circumspection; for "cloud" signifies the sense of the letter of the Word, "doves" the spiritual affection of truth, and "windows" truth in light. That such is the meaning of these words can be seen from the signification of "the flocks of Arabia," "the rams of Nebaioth," "cloud," "doves," and "windows."
 In David:
Fear and trembling were come upon me. And I said, Who will give me a wing like a dove's? I will fly away where I may dwell. Lo, I will wander far away; I will lodge in the wilderness (Psalms 55:5-7).
This treats of temptation and of distress then; "fear and trembling" signify such distress; the inquiry into truth then, and circumspection whither to turn oneself, is signified by "Who will give me a wing like a dove's? I will fly away where I may dwell." "Wing of a dove" means the affection of spiritual truth; "to fly away where I may dwell" means by that affection to rescue the life from damnation; that as yet there is no hope of deliverance is signified by "Lo, I will wander far away, and will lodge in the wilderness."
 In Hosea:
Ephraim, as a bird shall their glory fly away; yea if they have brought up sons, then I will make them bereaved of man (Hosea 9:11, 12).
"Ephraim" signifies the illustrated understanding of those who are of the church; "glory" signifies Divine truth; "to fly away as a bird" signifies the deprivation of it (comparison is made with a bird, because a "bird" signifies the rational and intellectual, as Ephraim does); "if they have brought up sons, then will I make them bereaved of man," signifies that if nevertheless they have brought forth truths, still they are not at all made wise thereby; for "sons" are truths, and "to make them bereaved of man" is to deprive them of wisdom.
 In Moses:
Ye shall not make to you the form of any beast upon the earth, nor the form of any winged bird that flieth towards heaven (Deuteronomy 4:16, 17). This signifies in the internal sense that man must not acquire for himself wisdom and intelligence from self, or from what is his own [ex proprio], for "beasts that walk upon the earth" signify the affections of good, from which is wisdom, and "birds" signify the affections of truth from which is intelligence. That they should not make to themselves the form of these signifies that the things signified are not to be acquired from man, that is, from what is his own [ex proprio]. It is said, "the winged bird that flieth towards heaven," because "winged bird" signifies the understanding of spiritual truth, and "to fly towards heaven" signifies the circumspection that belongs to intelligence in things Divine.
 From this it can now be seen what is signified by this cherub's appearing "like a flying eagle" as also what is signified in Isaiah by:
The seraphim, which 1
had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly (Isaiah 6:2);
namely that the "wings with which be covered his face" signify the affection of spiritual truth; the "wings with which he covered his feet" the affection of natural truth therefrom; and the "wings with which he did fly" circumspection and presence, here omnipresence, because "seraphim" have a like signification as "cherubim," namely, Divine Providence in respect to guarding.
 "To fly" in reference to man signifies circumspection and at the same time presence, because sight is present with the object that it sees; its appearing far away or at a distance is because of the intermediate objects that appear at the same time, and can be measured in respect to space. This can be fully confirmed by the things that exist in the spiritual world. In that world spaces themselves are appearances, arising from the diversity of affections and of thought therefrom; consequently, when any persons or things appear far away, and an angel or spirit desires from intense affection to be with such, or to examine the things that are at a distance, he is at once present there. The like is true of thought, which is man's internal or spiritual sight. Things previously seen thought sees within itself irrespective of space, thus altogether as present. This is why "flying" is predicated of the understanding and of its intelligence, and why it signifies circumspection and presence.
1. For "which" the Hebrew has "each of which" as found in 285.