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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



9233
Philo Of Alexandria, On Curses, 118-168


nanbut no foreign war and no civil war has ever existed for the sake of instruction or virtue, which are the good things of the mind, which is the best part of us; for these things are in their nature peaceful, and by them good laws and tranquil stability, and whatever else is most beautiful to the sharpseeing eyes of the soul, not to the dim perceptions of the body, are seen to be established. For the perceptive powers of the body look only upon the external surface, but the eye of the mind penetrates within, and going deep down surveys all the interior and hidden things which are removed out of the reach of bodily sight.


nanAnd nearly all the troubles, and confusions, and enmities which arise among men, are about absolutely nothing, but about what is really a shadow: for Moses called Tubal the son of Zillah, that is to say of shadow, the maker of the warlike instruments of brass and iron, speaking philosophically, and being guided not by verbal technicalities, but by the exceeding propriety of the names; for he knew that every naval and every land expedition chooses to encounter the greatest dangers for the sake of bodily pleasures, or with a view to obtain a superfluity of external good things, of which nothing is firm or solid, as is testified by the history of time, which brings all things to proof: for they are like superficial sketches, being in themselves perishable and of no duration. XXXV.


nanMoses proceeds to say, that Tubal's sister was Noeman, the interpretation of which name is "fatness." For it follows that those who pursue a luxurious condition of the body, and the other objects which I have mentioned, do get fat when they obtain any of the things that they desire: but such fatness as this I lay down as not strength but weakness; for it teaches a man to depart from the honour due to God, which is the first and most excellent power of the soul:


nanand the law is a witness to this which in the great hymn speaks thus--"He was fat, he was rich, he was exceeding broad, and he forsook God who had made him, and he forgot God his Saviour." For in truth those men whose lives have been exceedingly fortunate and are so at the time, do not remember the eternal God, but they think time their god;


nanon which account Moses bears witness, exhorting us to war against the contrary opinions, for he says, "The time has departed from them, and the Lord is among Us." So that those men by whom the life of the soul is honoured, have divine reason dwelling among them, and walking with them; but those who pursue a life of pleasure have only a brief and fictitious want of opportunities: these men, therefore, having swollen extravagantly, and become enormously distended by their profuse fatness and luxury, have burst asunder. But the others, being made fat by that wisdom which nourishes the souls that love virtue, have a firm and unshaken power, a specimen of which is the fat which is sacrificed as a whole burnt-offering from every victim:


nanfor Moses says, "All the fat shall belong to the Lord by the everlasting Law;" so that the fat of the mind is offered up to God and is appropriated to him, owing to which it is made immortal; but the fat which clings to the body and belongs to external things is referred to time, which is contrary to God, through which it very rapidly wastes away. XXXVI.


nanTherefore, concerning the wives of Lamech and his children, I think that enough has been said. Let us now consider what we may look upon as the resurrection of Abel, who was treacherously slain. Moses tells us, "And Adam knew his wife Eve, and she conceived and brought forth a son, and he called his name Seth; for, said he, "God has raised me up another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain Slew." The interpretation of the name Seth, is "irrigation.


nanAs, therefore, the seeds and plants which are put into the ground grow and blossom through being irrigated, and are thus made fertile for the production of fruits, but if they are deprived of moisture they wither away, so likewise the soul, as it appears when it is watered with the wholesome stream of wisdom, shoots forth, and brings fruit to perfection.


nanNow, irrigation may be looked upon in a two-fold light: with regard to that which irrigates, and with regard to that which is irrigated. And might one not say that each of the outward senses is irrigated by the mind as by a fountain, which widens and extends all their faculties, as if they were so many channels for water? No one, therefore, in his senses would say, that the eyes see, but that the mind sees by means of the eyes; or that the ears hear, but that the mind hears by the instrumentality of the ears; or that the nostrils smell, but that the predominant part of man smells through the medium of the nostrils. XXXVII.


nanOn which account it is said in Genesis, "And a fountain went up from the earth, and watered all the face of the Earth." For since nature has allotted the most excellent portion of the whole body, namely the face, to the outward senses, therefore the fountain which goes up from the superior part, being diffused over various parts, and sending up its streams like so many watercourses as high as the face, by their means conducts the faculties to each of the organs of the outwards senses. In this way in truth, it is that the word of God irrigates the virtues; for that is the beginning and the fountain of all good actions.


nanAnd the lawgiver shows this, when he says, "And a river went out of Eden to water the Paradise; and from thence it is divided into four Heads." For there are four generic virtues: prudence, courage, temperance, and justice. And of these, every single one is a princess and a ruler; and he who has acquired them is, from the moment of the acquisition, a ruler and a king, even if he has no abundance of any kind of treasure;


nanfor the meaning of the expression, "it is divided into four heads," is [...] nor distance; but virtue exhibits the pre-eminence and the power. And these spring from the word of God as from one root, which he compares to a river, on account of the unceasing and everlasting flow of salutary words and doctrines, by which it increases and nourishes the souls that love God. XXXVIII.


nanAnd of what kind they are, he proceeds to show in a few words, deriving his explanation from the natural things of art; for he introduces Agar as filling a leathern bag with water, and giving her child Drink. Now Agar is the handmaid of Sarah, the new dispensation of perfect virtue; and she is correctly represented so. Since, therefore, having come to the depth of knowledge, which Moses here calls a well, she draws up (filling the soul as if it were a vessel) the doctrines and speculations which she is in pursuit of, wishing to feed her child on the things on which she herself is fed.


nanAnd Moses, by her child, means, a soul which has lately learnt to desire instruction, and which has, in a manner, just been born to learn. In reference to which, the boy, when he has grown up to man's estate, becomes a sophist, whom Moses calls an archer; for whatever argument he applies his mind to, at that, as at a target, he shoots all his reasons, as an archer shoots his arrows. XXXIX.


nanBut Rebekkah is found to give her pupil drink no longer by improvement, but by perfection. How so the law will tell us: "For the damsel," says Moses, "was very beautiful to the sight, and was a maiden; no man had known her. And when he had gone down to the fountain, she filled her pitcher, and came up again; and the servant ran forward to meet her, and said, Give me now to drink a little water from thy pitcher. And she said, Drink, my lord. And she made haste, and took down the pitcher on her arm, and gave to him to drink until he ceased drinking, And said, and I will also give to thy camels to drink, until they have all drunk; and she made haste, and emptied her pitcher into the trough, and running to the well, she drew water for the Camels.


nanHere who can help wondering at the minute accuracy of the lawgiver as to every particular? He calls Rebekkah a maiden, and a very beautiful maiden, because the nature of virtue is unmixed and free from guile, and unpolluted, and the only thing in all creation which is both beautiful and good; from which arose the Stoic doctrine, that the only thing that was beautiful was the good. XL.


nanNow of the four virtues, some are always virgins, and some from having been women become changed into virgins, as Sarah did; "For it had ceased to be with her after the manner of Women," when she began to conceive her happy offspring Isaac. But that which is always a virgin, is that of which Moses says, "And no man whatever knows her." For in truth, it is not permitted to any mortal to pollute incorruptible nature, nor even clearly to comprehend what it is. If indeed he were able by any means to become acquainted with it, he would not cease to hate and regret it;


nanon which account Moses, in strict accordance with the principles of natural philosophy, represents Leah as Hated. For those whom the charms of pleasures, which are with Rachel, that is to say, with the outward sense, cannot be endured by Leah, who is situated out of the reach of the passions; on which account they repudiate and detest her. But as far as she herself is concerned, her alienation from the creature produces her a close connection with God, from whom she receives the seeds of wisdom, and conceives, and travails, and brings forth virtuous ideas, worthy of the father who begot them. If therefore, you, O my soul, imitating Leah, reject mortal things, you will of necessity turn to the incorruptible God, who will shed over you all the fountains of his good. XLI.


nanBut Rebekkah," says Moses, "went down to the fountain to fill her pitcher, and came up again." For from what source is it natural for the mind that thirsts after wisdom to be filled, except from the wisdom of God, that fountain which never fails, and to which the soul that descends comes up again like a virtuous disciple? For those who descend out of a vain pride, the reason of virtue receives, and taking them up by means of fame raises them to a height. On which account it is that Moses seems to me to use the expression, "Go, descend, and come Up," as if every one who measures his own loveliness comes forth more gloriously in the eyes of the judges of truth. And he speaks of these matters with great caution.


nanFor Agar bears a leathern bag to the well, but Rebekkah carries a pitcher. For the one who devotes himself to instruction and to the energetical branches of learning has need of some incorporeal things as it were of the outward senses, of vessels, and eyes, and ears, for a proper contemplation of the objects of her speculation. For from seeing many things and hearing many things, there is derived, in the case of those who are fond of learning the advantage which proceeds from knowledge. But the one who is filled with unalloyed wisdom has need only of a leathern habitation, which is no better than none at all. For the soul which loves unsubstantial things has learnt to put off the whole leathern bag of reasons, that is to say the body, and brings only a pitcher which is the symbol of a vessel, which contains the principal portion in great size and abundance, like water; as to which, those who are clever in such matters may make it a subject of philosophical speculation, whether it is a membrane or a heart.


nanTherefore, the man who is fond of learning, seeing men imbibing the sciences like water, from wisdom that divine fountain, runs up, and meeting them becomes a suppliant to them to know how he may allay his thirst for learning. And the soul which has received the best possible education, namely, the lesson not to envy, and to be liberal, immediately proffers to him the stream of wisdom, and invites him to drink abundantly, adding also this that she calls him who is only a servant her lord. This is the meaning of that most dogmatic assertion, that the wise man alone is free, and a king, even if he have ten thousand masters over his body. XLII.


nanMost correctly, therefore, after the servant has said, "Give me a little water to drink," does she make answer, not in the manner corresponding to his request: "I will give you to drink," but "Drink." For the one expression would have been suited to one who was displaying the riches of God, which are poured forth for all who are worthy of them and who are able to think of them; but the other expression is appropriate to one who professes that she will teach. But nothing which is connected with mere professions is akin to virtue.


nanBut he describes in a most skilful manner the language used by her who teaches and benefits her pupils. For "she made haste," he says, "and took down the pitcher on her arm." Her alacrity to serve the man was displayed by her making haste, and such alacrity is seated in the mind, beyond which envy is cast away. But by the expression, "taking down the pitcher on her arm," we see intimated the prompt and eager attention of the teacher to the pupil;


nanfor those teachers are foolish who attempt to regulate their explanations not by a reference to the capacity of their pupils, but to their own superior ability, not being aware that there is a vast difference between making a display and giving a lesson. For he who is making a display, relying on the good fortune of his present way of proceeding, brings into sight, without any trouble, the works at which he has for a long while been labouring at home, like the works of painters or sculptors, seeking for praise from the multitude. But he who is endeavouring to teach others, like a good physician, has a regard not to the greatness of his own skill, but to the capacity of his patient who is to be healed; not thinking how much he can do by his art, for it is unspeakable how much this may be; but what the patient requires, aiming at moderation, and bringing forward what may improve him. XLIII.


nanOn which account Moses says in another passage, "Thou shalt lend a loan to him who asks you for one, as much as he requires, having regard to what he Requires." By the second phrase showing that it is not everything which is to be given, but only such things as are suitable to the requirements of those who are asking for them. For to give an anchor, or an oar, or a rudder to a husbandman, or ploughs or a spade to a captain of a ship, or a lyre to a physician, or instruments suited to manual labour to a musician, would be ridiculous, unless indeed one ought to offer a thirsty man costly viands, or a hungry man unmixed wine in abundance, so as to show at once one's own riches and one's want of humanity, by turning the souls of one's companions into ridicule. The quantity to be given in an act of beneficence is defined according to due proportion, which is a most useful thing. For, says Moses, do not give all that right reason is able to give, but as much as he who is asking the loan is worthy to receive.


nanDo you not see that even God does not utter his oracles, having a regard to their being in proportion to the magnitude of his own oracular power, but always having respect to the capacity of those who are to be benefited by them? Since who could receive the whole power of the words of God, which are too mighty for any one to listen to? On which account those persons appear to speak with great truth, who say to Moses, "Do thou speak to us, and let not God speak to us, lest we Die." For they know that they have not in themselves any organ which can be worthy of God who is giving laws to his church;


nannor, indeed, could even the whole world, both land and sea, contain his riches if he were inclined to display them, unless we think that the descent of the rains and of the other things that happen in the world are appointed to take place according to the pre-arranged periods of the seasons, and not all at once, because of the scarcity and rarity of the things themselves, and not from any regard to the advantage of those who are benefited by them; who would be injured rather than be benefited by a continual enjoyment of such gifts.


nanOn this account it is, that God always judiciously limits and brings out with wise moderation his first benefits, stopping them before those who partake of them become wanton through satiety; and then he bestows others in their stead; and again a third class of advantages instead of the second set, and so on, continually substituting new blessings for those of older date, at one time giving such as are different from those which went before, and at another time such as are almost identical with them; for the creature is never wholly destitute of the blessings bestowed by God, since if he were he would be utterly destroyed; but he is unable to endure an unlimited and measureless abundance of them. On which account, as he is desirous that we should derive advantage from the benefits which he bestows upon us, he weighs out what he gives so as to proportion it to the strength of those who receive it. XLIV.


nanRebekkah, therefore, must be praised, who, in obedience to the injunctions of her father, having taken down the vessel of wisdom on her arm from a higher place, proffered her pitcher to the disciple; by the pitcher being understood that teaching which he is competent to receive.


nanAnd beyond all other things, I especially admire her exceeding liberality; for though she had only been asked for a small draught, she gave a large one, until she had filled the whole soul of the learner with wholesome speculations. For Moses says, "She gave him to drink till he ceased from drinking," a most marvellous example to teach us humanity. For if any one should not happen to be in want of many things, but should come forward, and out of shame ask only for a very little, let us not give him only what he mentions, but also those things of which he makes no mention, but of which he is nevertheless in reality in need.


nanBut it is not sufficient for the complete enjoyment of his teacher's lessons, that the disciple should merely comprehend what the master has taught him, unless he has also got memory. On which account, making a display of her bounteous disposition, when he has satisfied himself with the water, she offers to give his camels water also, which we have already said are here put symbolically for memory. For the animal while eating its food ruminates, and when, having stooped down it has received a heavy burden, with exceedingly great vigour of muscle it rises up lightly;


nanand in the same manner also, the soul of the man who is devoted to learning, when the burden of its speculations is placed upon it, becomes more lowly, and when it has risen up it rejoices; and from that mastication, and as it were the softening, of the first food that is placed down before it, arises its memory of those speculations.


nanBut she, beholding the nature of the servant to be well calculated for the reception of virtue, emptied her whole pitcher into the cistern, that is to say, she emptied the whole knowledge of the teacher into the soul of the learner. For the sophists, from a desire of gain and also from envy, repressing the natural characters of their pupils, keep silence about many things which ought to be mentioned, laying up for themselves a source of gain for future times.


nanBut virtue is an ungrudging and most liberal feeling, so that it does not hesitate to assist another with hand and foot, as the proverb goes, and with all its power. Therefore, pouring all that she knew into the mind of the pupil as into a cistern, she went again to the well to draw water, that is to say, she went to the ever-flowing wisdom of God, that what had been already imparted might be firmly fixed in by memory, and that he might also be irrigated with the knowledge of other and newer things. For the wealth of the wisdom of God is illimitable, and as a tree which is continually putting forth new shoots after the old ones, so that it never ceases growing young again, and being in the flower of its strength.


nanSo that they are marvellously simple people who have ever had an idea of coming to the end of any branch of knowledge whatever. For that which has seemed to be near and within reach is nevertheless a long way distant from the end; since no created being is perfect in any department of learning, but falls as far short of it as a thoroughly infant child just beginning to learn does, in comparison of a man who both by age and skill is qualified to be a master. XLV.


nanAnd we must inquire the cause why the handmaid gave the servant drink from the fountain, but gave the camels water from the well. May it not perhaps be that the stream here signifies the sacred scripture itself, which irrigates the sciences, and that the well is rather akin to memory? For the depths which he has already mentioned, he produces by means of memory as it were out of a well;


nanand such persons as these one ought to admit because of the goodness of their natural disposition. But there are some men among those who practise virtue to whom the all-beneficent God has shown the way that leads to virtue, such that at first it is accounted rough, and steep, and difficult, but subsequently level and easy, having changed the bitterness of the wayfarer's labour to sweetness. And how he has wrought this change we will now tell.


nanWhen he led us forth out of Egypt, that is to say, out of the passions which excite the body, we, travelling in the desert, that is to say, in the path of pleasure, encamped in the place called Marah, a place which had no drinkable water, but where all the water was Bitter. For still the pleasures which are brought into action by means of the eyes, and ears, and belly, and the parts adjacent to the belly, were tempting to us, and charmed us exceedingly, sounding close to us.


nanWhen, therefore, we desired to be entirely separated from them, they dragged us back, exerting themselves in opposition to us, and entwining themselves round us, and soothing us with all kinds of juggling tricks and assiduous blandishments; so that we, yielding to their unremitting caresses, became alienated from and disinclined to labour, as something very bitter and intolerable, and designed to run back again to Egypt, that is to say, to the condition of an intemperate and lascivious life, if the Saviour had not speedily taken pity on us, and thrown a sweetening branch like a medicine upon our soul, causing it to love labour instead of hating it.


nanFor he knew, inasmuch as he was our Creator, that we could not possibly survive any existing thing unless there were in us an intense love of doing so. Therefore, men never succeed in attaining any object that they desire if they pursue it without any connection with or consideration of fitness. But when friendship is added, and also a familiarity with the loved object, their endeavours then succeed rightly. XLVI.


nanThis is the food of a soul which is inclined to the practice of virtue, to consider labour a very sweet thing instead of a bitter one, which, however, it is not allowed to all persons to participate in; but to those only by whom the golden calf, the animal made by the Egyptians, the body, is sprinkled over with water after having been burnt with fire, and broken to pieces. For it is said in the sacred scriptures, that "Moses having taken the calf burnt it with fire, and broke it up into small pieces, and threw the pieces into the water and caused the children of Israel to drink Thereof.


nanFor the love of virtue being inflamed and excited by the brilliant appearance of virtue, burns to ashes the pleasures of the body, and then cuts them to pieces and pounds them to nothing, using the divine word which can at all times divide everything. And in this manner he teaches us that among the bodily advantages are health, and beauty, and the accuracy of the outward senses, and the perfection of bodily vigour with strength and mighty energy; but still that all these things are common to accursed and wicked persons, while if they were really good no wicked person would be allowed to partake of them.


nanBut these men, even if they are utterly wicked, still, inasmuch as they are men, and so far partake of the same human nature as virtuous men, do also partake of these advantages of the body. And, in fact, at present those wild beasts which are the most untameable, enjoy these good things, if indeed they are in reality good things, in a greater degree than rational beings;


nanfor what wrestler could be compared in might with the strength of a bull or of an elephant? And what runner could put himself on a level with the speed of a hound or of a hare? And the most sharp-sighted of men is absolutely blind if his sight is compared with that of antelopes of eagles. Again, in hearing and in smell, often other animals are very far beyond man; as, for instance, the ass, which appears to be the stupidest of all animals, would show that our sense of hearing is very obtuse if he were brought into comparison with us. The dog, too, would make the nostrils in man appear a perfectly useless part from the exceeding superiority of the quickness of his own sense of smell; for, in him, that sense is pushed to such a degree that it almost equals the rapidity of the eye-sight. XLVII.


nanAnd why need I dwell on the subject more, going through each of the senses and animals separately? For this point has been long agreed upon among all the most eminent historians and philosophers, who have all said that nature is the mother of the irrational animals, and the stepmother of men, perceiving the bodily weakness of men, and the surpassing strength of brute animals in everything. With great propriety, therefore, the artist pounded the calf to pieces; that is to say, dividing it into parts, he showed that all the things which the body has in abundance are very far removed from real good, and are in no respect different from those things which are scattered on the water.


nanOn which account the scripture tells us that the calf, after having been pounded to pieces, was scattered on the water, to signify that no genuine plant of good can ever flourish in corruptible matter; for as a seed, when thrown into the stream of a river or into the sea, cannot display its proper powers; for it is impossible, unless it has once taken hold with its roots, as with anchors, of some firm portion of earth, that any branch should be firmly fixed or should shoot up, I do not say to any height, but even as a creeper along the ground, or that it should ever bring forth fruit at the periodical seasons of the year, for any great and violent rush of water coming on washes away all the germinating vigour of the seed. In the same manner all the superfluities contained in the vessel of the soul which are ever spoken of or celebrated are destroyed before they can have any existence, the corporeal substance continually flowing off from them.


nanFor how can there be such things as disease and old age and all kinds of corruptions, if there were not a continual drawing off of words, which are theoretical streams; the hierophant, therefore, thinks it Right to irrigate our minds with these words, for the sake of burning up the pleasures, of pounding to pieces and reducing to a thin and impalpable dust, and utterly destroying the system of the corporeal goods; and of making us recollect that the true good has never at any time germinated or blossomed from any one of them, just as nothing flourishes from seeds which are sown in water. XLVIII.


nanBut bulls, and rams, and goats, which Egypt holds in honour, and all other images of corruptible matter which, in report alone, are accounted God's, have no real existence, but are all fictitious and false; for those who look upon life as only a tragedy full of acts of arrogance and stories of love, impressing false ideas on the tender minds of young men, and using the ears as their ministers, into which they pour fabulous trifles, waste away and corrupt their minds, compelling them to look upon persons who were never even men in their minds, but always effeminate creatures as God's;


nanfor the calf was not made of every description of female ornament, but only of the earrings of the women. The lawgiver showing us by this that nothing wrought with hands is a visible and true God, but only so by report, and as far as he is thought so, and that, too, the report of a woman and not of a man; for it is the conduct of a soul utterly enervated and rendered completely effeminate to receive such nonsense.


nanBut he who is truly God is perceived, and felt, and recognised, not only by means of one's ears, but also by the eyes of our mind, through his mighty works which are done in the world, and through the rapidity of his operations; on which account in the great song it is said (the speaker assuming the character of God), "Behold! behold! it is I!" as if that real existing God could be more easily conceived by the mind than proved by verbal demonstration;


nanbut it is not correct to say that the living God is visible, that is rather an abuse of language, arising from referring God himself to his separate acts of power; for even in the passage cited above, he does not say, "Behold me," for it is wholly impossible that God according to his essence should be perceived or beheld by any creature, but he says, "Behold! it is I," that is to say, behold my existence; for it is sufficient for the reasoning powers of man to advance so far as to learn that there is and actually exists the great cause of all things, and to attempt to proceed further, so as to pursue investigations into the essence or distinctive qualities of God, is an absolute piece of folly;


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

5 results
1. Hebrew Bible, Genesis, 19.19 (9th cent. BCE - 3rd cent. BCE)

19.19. הִנֵּה־נָא מָצָא עַבְדְּךָ חֵן בְּעֵינֶיךָ וַתַּגְדֵּל חַסְדְּךָ אֲשֶׁר עָשִׂיתָ עִמָּדִי לְהַחֲיוֹת אֶת־נַפְשִׁי וְאָנֹכִי לֹא אוּכַל לְהִמָּלֵט הָהָרָה פֶּן־תִּדְבָּקַנִי הָרָעָה וָמַתִּי׃ 19.19. behold now, thy servant hath found grace in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy mercy, which thou hast shown unto me in saving my life; and I cannot escape to the mountain, lest the evil overtake me, and I die."
2. Philo of Alexandria, On Curses, 101-117, 119-168, 170-172, 79-100 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

100. And Jacob's brother, he says, was Jubal, and the interpretation of this latter name is "inclining," being symbolically speech according to utterance; for this is naturally the brother of intellect; and it is with extraordinary propriety that he called the conversation of that intellect which changes affairs, "inclining," for it agrees after a fashion and harmonizes with both, as the equivalent weight does in a scale, or as a vessel which is tossed by the sea inclines first to one side and then to the other, from the violence of the waves; for the foolish man has not learnt how to say anything firm or stable.
3. Philo of Alexandria, On The Life of Moses, 2.14, 2.43-2.44 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

2.14. But the enactments of this lawgiver are firm, not shaken by commotions, not liable to alteration, but stamped as it were with the seal of nature herself, and they remain firm and lasting from the day on which they were first promulgated to the present one, and there may well be a hope that they will remain to all future time, as being immortal, as long as the sun and the moon, and the whole heaven and the whole world shall endure. 2.43. In this way those admirable, and incomparable, and most desirable laws were made known to all people, whether private individuals or kings, and this too at a period when the nation had not been prosperous for a long time. And it is generally the case that a cloud is thrown over the affairs of those who are not flourishing, so that but little is known of them; 2.44. and then, if they make any fresh start and begin to improve, how great is the increase of their renown and glory? I think that in that case every nation, abandoning all their own individual customs, and utterly disregarding their national laws, would change and come over to the honour of such a people only; for their laws shining in connection with, and simultaneously with, the prosperity of the nation, will obscure all others, just as the rising sun obscures the stars.
4. Philo of Alexandria, That The Worse Attacks The Better, 7 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

7. for as he philosophises more with a regard to political wisdom than to truth, he brings into one place and connects together the three kinds of good things, namely, external things, the things concerning the body, and those concerning the soul, things utterly different from one another in their whole natures; wishing to show that each has need of each, and that everything has need of everything; and that that which is really the complete and perfect good, is composed of all these things together, and that the parts of which this perfect good is compounded are parts or elements of good, but are not themselves perfect goods.
5. New Testament, 1 Corinthians, 9.6 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

9.6. Or have onlyBarnabas and I no right to not work?


Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
abraham, as an elder Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
abraham, encomia on Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
abraham, faith of Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
abraham, humanity of Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
abraham, praise of Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
age and youth Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
apocalypticism/apocalyptic, jewish Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
barnabas Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
christianity/christians, early writings/literature Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
christianity/christians, emergence of Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
christianity/christians, missionaries/travelers Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
clement of alexandria Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
cyprus Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
dispute between abraham and lot, allegorical interpretation of Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342, 403
dispute between abraham and lot, literal interpretation of Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
dispute between abraham and lot Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
elder, abraham as Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
encomia, on abraham Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
epistle of barnabas Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
external goods, faith vs. Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
external goods, virtue vs. Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
external goods Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
faith, as queen of the virtues Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
faith, external goods contrasted with Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
faith Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
gomorrah, faith in god and Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
gomorrah, goods, kinds of Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
gomorrah, the soul and Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
humanity of abraham Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
lot, as unstable Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
messiah, philos logos and Heo, Images of Torah: From the Second-Temple Period to the Middle Ages (2023) 195
messianism, apocalyptic (or acute) Heo, Images of Torah: From the Second-Temple Period to the Middle Ages (2023) 195
messianism, stoic logos related to Heo, Images of Torah: From the Second-Temple Period to the Middle Ages (2023) 195
names of god, masculine participle Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
neuter participle Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
paul of tarsus Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
philo, and origen Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
piety, as highest virtue Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
reputation, as an external good Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
sarah, as an elder Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
soul, types of Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
stoic logos, messianism related to Heo, Images of Torah: From the Second-Temple Period to the Middle Ages (2023) 195
stoicism Heo, Images of Torah: From the Second-Temple Period to the Middle Ages (2023) 195
stoics, classification of goods and Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
travel Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 374
trust in god vs. external goods Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
universal law' Heo, Images of Torah: From the Second-Temple Period to the Middle Ages (2023) 195
virtue, piety as highest Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
virtue, vs. wealth or external goods Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
εὐσέβεια Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
πρεσβύτερος Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
πίστις Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
τρόποι ψυχῆς Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 342
τὸ ὄν Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403
ὁ ὤν Birnbaum and Dillon, Philo of Alexandria: On the Life of Abraham: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2020) 403