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Guthrie: 6. The Human Soul.

quinta-feira 24 de março de 2022


6. The Human Soul.—We have seen that the Soul   of the Universe begat the human souls. Yet we have other accounts of their creation, which set forth that the Creator compounded human souls in the same vessel in which he had compounded the Soul of the Universe, the difference being that the elements used were less pure; and after creating them, the Creator assigned to each Soul its appropriate star. Thus the World-Soul and each human soul are sisters, and not related to each other as mother and daughter.

Each soul is composed of three parts. The first is reason, "to logistikon  ," which has its seat in the head, and is the organ of knowledge. Its moderate regulation is the virtue called wisdom, the opposite of this virtue is the vice, foolishness. The second part of the soul attends to all bodily wants, and its name is the "Epithymetikon  ." It is the organ of perception, and has its seat in the abdomen (the solar plexus). To this part of the soul God   has added, in the liver, an organ of intuitive and presentimentative knowledge. The moderate exercise of this part of the soul is the virtue "Sophrosyne  ," self-control, and its opposite habit is the vice "Akolasia  ," intemperance. Lastly, we have the third part of the soul, "to Thymoeides" the courageous part of the soul, prepared by the secondary deities, presumably the World-Soul, and this is the organ whose moderate exercise is the virtue "Andria," courage, as opposed to the vice "Deilia  ," cowardice. The fourth virtue, "Dikaiosyne  ," justice, is the right relation between the above three virtues, and when it is exercised towards God, it becomes "Hosiotes," holiness or piety, since it is man’s end to resemble God, who is absolutely good. This is happiness  . Virtue is the health and order and harmony of the soul, and should therefore be followed irrespective of consequences or sanctions; for to do injustice is worse than to suffer it from another. This philosophy demands the rationality of the entire man.

Yet, in a single life on earth, injustice to souls is patent. God is just: consequently this life cannot be all. The soul exists both before and after this life; it transmigrates through all forms according to inexorable justice. If the soul of a wise man erred, his next incarnation would be in the body of a woman; if the soul persisted in its evil ways, the next incarnation would be that of an animal  . If however a soul for several incarnations chose the study of philosophy, it would soon become permanently freed from the necessity of reincarnating.

Pleasure is not necessarily good: it may indeed be evil; moderation and health of the soul are pleasurable in themselves. Pleasure is in itself antithetically opposed to all true insight  .