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Providência

quinta-feira 24 de março de 2022

III. 2. 9
(Armstrong   Selection and Translation from the Enneads  )

[Our own part in the universal order; we remain free and responsible, and the wicked cannot expect gods or good men to help them escape the consequences of their actions.]

Providence cannot exist in such a way as to make us nothing. If everything was Providence and nothing but Providence, then Providence would not exist; for what would It have to provide for? There would be nothing but the Divine. The Divine exists as things are, and comes forth to something other than Itself, not to destroy that other, but to preside over it. With man, for instance, It sees to it that he is man, that is, that he lives by the law of Providence, which means doing everything that that law says. And it says that those who become good shall have a good life, now, and laid up in store for them hereafter as well, and the wicked the opposite. It is not lawful for those who have become wicked to demand others to be their saviours and to sacrifice themselves in answer to their prayers;9 or to require gods to direct their affairs in detail, laying aside their own life, or good men, who live another life better than human rule, to become their rulers.