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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



9226
Philo Of Alexandria, On Giants, 19-55


nanAnd, in all such matters, it is impossible for the spirit of God to remain and to pass all its time, as the law-giver himself shows. "For," says Moses, "the Lord said, My spirit shall not remain among men for ever, because they are Flesh.


nanFor, at times, it does remain; but it does not remain for ever and ever among the greater part of us; for who is so destitute of reason or so lifeless as never, either voluntarily or involuntarily, to conceive a notion of the all good God. For, very often, even over the most polluted and accursed beings, there hovers a sudden appearance of the good, but they are unable to take firm hold of it and to keep it among them;


nanfor, almost immediately, it quits its former place and departs, rejecting those inhabitants who come over to it, and who live in defiance of law and justice, to whom it never would have come if it had not been for the sake of convicting those who choose what is disgraceful instead of what is good.


nanBut the spirit of God is spoken of in one manner as being air flowing upon the earth, bringing a third element in addition to water. In reference to which, Moses says, in his account of the creation of the world, "The spirit of God moved upon the face of the Waters." Since the air, as it is very light, is raised and borne aloft, having water, as it were, for its foundation; and, in another manner, unalloyed knowledge is said to be so, which every wise man naturally partakes of.


nanAnd Moses shows us this, when speaking of the creator and maker of the holy work of the creation, in these words: "And God summoned Bezaleel, and filled him with his Holy Spirit, and with wisdom, and understanding, and knowledge, to be able to devise every Work." So that, what the spirit of God is, is very definitively described in these words. VI.


nanSuch also is the spirit of Moses, which came upon the seventy elders, for the sake of making them differ from, and be superior to the rest of the Israelites, who could not possibly be elders in real truth, unless they had partaken of that allwise spirit. For it is said, "I will take of my spirit which is upon thee, and I will pour it upon the seventy Elders.


nanBut think not that thus this taking away, could be by means of cutting off or separation; but it is here, as is the case in an operation effected by fire, which can light ten thousand torches, without itself being diminished the least atom, or ceasing to remain as it was before. Something like this also is the nature of knowledge. For though it has made all its pupils, and all who have become acquainted with it, learned, still it is in no degree diminished itself, but very often it even becomes improved, just as, they say, that fountains sometimes are by being drained dry; for, it is said, that they sometimes become sweeter by such a process.


nanFor continual association with others, engendering diligence and practice, gradually works out entire perfection. If, then, the individual spirit of Moses, or of any other creature, was about to be distributed to so great a multitude of pupils, then, if it were divided into such a number of small portions, it would be diminished.


nanBut now, the spirit which is upon him is the wise, the divine, the indivisible, the undistributable, the good spirit, the spirit which is everywhere diffused, so as to fill the universe, which, while it benefits others, it not injured by having a participation in it given to another, and if added to something else, either as to its understanding, or its knowledge, or its wisdom. VII.


nanOn which account, it is possible that the spirit of God may remain in the soul, but that it should remain for ever is impossible, as we have said. And why need we wonder? since there is no other thing whatever, the possession of which, is stable and lasting; but mortal affairs are continually wavering in the scale, and inclining first to one side, and then to the other, and liable at different times to different changes.


nanAnd the greatest cause of our ignorance is the flesh, and our inseparable connection with the flesh. And this, Moses represents God as admitting, where he says that, "Because they are flesh," the spirit of God cannot abide in them. And yet marriage and the rearing of children, and the furnishing of necessary things, and ingloriousness conjoined with a want of money and business, both private and public, and a countless number of other things cause wisdom to waste away, before it begins to flourish vigorously.


nanBut there is nothing which is so great a hindrance to its growth as the fleshly nature. For that, as if it were the principal and most solid foundation of folly and ignorance, is laid down firmly, and then each of the aforenamed evils is built up upon it.


nanFor those souls which are devoid of flesh and of the body, remaining undisturbed in the theatre of the universe, occupied in seeing and hearing divine things, of which an insatiable desire has seized them, enjoy a pleasure to which no one offers any interruption. But those which bear the heavy burden of the flesh, being weighed down and oppressed by it, are unable to look upwards to the revolutions of the heaven, but being dragged downwards, have their necks forcibly pressed to the ground like so many quadrupeds. VIII.


nanIn reference to which fact, the lawgiver having determined to put an end to all illegal and illegitimate associations and unions, begins his denunciations in the following manner: "Man shall not come near to any one who is akin to his own flesh, to uncover his nakedness: I am the Lord." How could any one more forcibly exhort man to despise the flesh and what is akin to the flesh than in this way?


nanAnd indeed he does not only exhort us to abandon such things, but he shows positively that he who is really a man will never come of his own accord to those pleasures which are dear to and connected with the body, but will always be meditating to alienate himself from them entirely.


nanFor the saying, "Man, man," not once but twice, is a sign that what is here meant is not the man composed of body and soul, but him only who is possessed of virtue. For such an one is really a true man, whom some one of the ancient philosophers having lighted a lantern at midday, went in search of, and told those who asked him that he was seeking a man. And as for the prohibition against every man coming near to any one who is akin to his own flesh, this is induced by necessary reasons. For there are some things which we should admit, such for instance as those useful things, by the employment of which we may be able to live in freedom from disease and in good health; and there are other things which should be rejected, by which, when the appetites become inflamed, they burn up all goodness in one vast conflagration.


nanLet not then our appetites rush eagerly in pursuit of all the things that are pleasant to the flesh, for the pleasures are often untameable, when like dogs they fawn upon us, and all of a sudden, change and bite us, inflicting incurable sounds. So that by cleaving to frugality, which is a friend to virtue, in preference to the pleasures akin to the body, we shall defeat the numerous and infinite multitude of irreconcilable enemies. And if any occasion should seek to compel us to take more than what is moderate or sufficient, let us not yield; for the scripture saith, "He shall come near to him to uncover his nakedness." IX.


nanAnd what is meant by this, it is worth while to explain. It has often happened, that some who have not been themselves providers of wealth, have nevertheless had unlimited abundance. And others, who have not been eager in the pursuit of glory have been thought worthy of public praises and honours. Others again, who have not expected to acquire even a little strength, have arrived at the greatest vigour and activity.


nanNow, let all these men learn not to cleave in their minds to any one of these qualities; that is to say, not to admire them and grasp at them in an immoderate degree, looking upon them all, that is to say on riches, on glory, and on bodily strength, not only not as intrinsically good, but as the greatest of evils. For to misers, the pursuit of money is appropriate, and the pursuit of glory is so to ambitious men, and the acquisition of bodily strength is so to men fond of athletic and of gymnastic exercises. For that which is the better part of them, namely, the soul, they have abandoned as a slave to those things which are inferior to themselves, namely, to inanimate things.


nanBut as many as are masters of themselves show that all that brilliant prosperity, which is an object of so much contention, is in subordination to the mind, which is the principal part of them, receiving it when it comes, so as to make a good use of it, but not pursuing it if it keeps aloof, as being able to be happy even without it.


nanBut he who pursues it eagerly and follows upon its track, fills philosophy with base opinions; on which account he is said to uncover its nakedness, for how can there be any concealment or ignorance of the reproaches to which those men are justly exposed, who profess indeed to be wise men, but who make a traffic of wisdom, and bargain for the sale of it, as they say men do in the market, who put up their wares for sale, sometimes for a slight gain, sometimes for sweet and caressing speeches, and sometimes for insecure hopes, founded on no sure ground, and sometimes even for promises which are in no respect better than dreams. X.


nanAnd the sentence which follows, "I am the Lord," is uttered with great beauty and with most excessive propriety, "for," says the Lord, "oppose, my good man, the good of the flesh to that of the soul, and of the whole man;" therefore the pleasure of the flesh is irrational, but the pleasure of the soul and of the whole man is the mind of the universe, namely God;


nanand the comparison is an admirable one, and one difficult to be instituted, so as for any one to be deceived by the close similitude, unless any one will say that living things are in reality the same as lifeless things, rational things the same as irrational things; well adapted the same as those ill adapted; odd numbers identical with even ones; light with darkness, and day with night; and in short every thing that is contrary the same as its contrary.


nanAnd yet even although these things have some kind of union and connection together by reason of their being created, still God is not in any respect like the very best of created beings, inasmuch as these have been born, and are liable to suffering; but he is uncreated, and always acting not suffering.


nanNow it is well not to desert the ranks of God, in which it follows inevitably that all who are arrayed must be most excellent, and it would be shameful to quit those ranks, to fly to unmanly and effeminate pleasure, which injures its friends and benefits its enemies, for its nature is a very singular one; for all those to whom it chooses to give a share of its special advantages, it at once chastises and injures; and those whom it thinks fit to deprive of its good things, it benefits in the greatest possible degree, for it injures them when it gives, but it benefits them when it takes away.


nanIf therefore, O my soul, any one of the temptations of pleasure invites you, turn yourself away, and directing your views towards another point, look at the genuine beauty of virtue, and having surveyed it, remain, until a desire for it has sunk into you, and draws you to it, like a magnet, and immediately leads you and attaches you to that which has become the object of your desire. XI.


nanAnd the expression, "I am the Lord," must be listened to, not only as if it were equivalent to, "I am the perfect, and incorruptible, and true good," with which if any one is surrounded he will reject all that is imperfect, and corruptible, and attached to the flesh; but also as equivalent to, "I am the ruler, and the king, and the master.


nanAnd it is not safe for subjects to do wrong in the presence of their rulers, nor for slaves to err before their masters; for when the punishers are near, those whose nature is not quick at submitting to admonitions are held in restraint and order by fear;


nanfor God, having filled everything with himself, is near at hand, so that he is looking over everything and standing by, we being filled with a great and holy reverence, or if not with that, at all events, having a prudent fear of the might of his authority, and of the fearful nature of his punishment, which cannot be avoided, whenever he determines to exert his punishing power, shall desist from doing wrong. In order that the divine spirit of wisdom may not be inclined to quit our neighbourhood and depart, but that it may remain a very long time with us, as it did also with the wise Moses;


nanfor Moses is a being of the most tranquil habits, either standing still or sitting still, and not at all disposed by nature to subject himself to turns and changes; for the scripture says, "Moses and the ark did not Move," inasmuch as the wise man cannot depart from virtue, or inasmuch as virtue is not liable to move, nor is the virtuous man inclined to changes, but each of these things is established on the sure foundation of right reason.


nanAnd again, the scripture saith in another passage, "But stand thou here with Me." For this is an oracle of God, which was given to the prophet, and his station was to be one of unmoved tranquillity by God, who always stands immovably; for it is indispensable, that all things which are placed by the side of him must be kept straight by such an undeviating rule.


nanOn this account it is, as it seems to me, that excessive pride, named Jethro, marvelling at his unvarying and always equal choice of what was wise, a choice which always looked at the same things in the same way, was perplexed, and put a question to him in this form, "Why dost thou sit by Thyself?


nanFor any one who considers the continual war raging among men in the middle of peace, and existing, not merely among nations, and countries, and cities, but also among private houses, or I might rather say, between every individual man and the inexpressible and heavy storms which agitate the souls of men, which, by their evident impetuosity, throw into confusion all the affairs of life, may very naturally wonder, if in such a storm, any one can enjoy tranquillity, and can feel a calm in such a billowy state of the stormy sea.


nanYou see that even the high priest, that is to say, reason, who might at all times remain and reside in the holy dwelling of God, has not free permission to approach them at all times, but only once in each year; for whatever is associated with reason by utterance is not firm, because it is of a twofold nature. But the safest conduct is to contemplate the living God by the soul alone, without utterance of any voice, because he exists according to the indivisible unit. XII.


nanAs, therefore, among men in general, that is to say, among those who propose to themselves many objects in life, the divine spirit does not remain, even though it may abide among them for a very short time, but it remains among one species of men alone, namely, among those who, having put off all the things of creation, and the inmost veil and covering of false opinion, come to God in their unconcealed and naked minds.


nanThus also Moses, having fixed his tent outside of the tabernacle and outside of all the corporeal army, that is to say, having established his mind so that it should not move, begins to worship God, and having entered into the darkness, that invisible country, remains there, performing the most sacred mysteries; and he becomes, not merely an initiated man, but also an hierophant of mysteries and a teacher of divine things, which he will explain to those whose ears are purified;


nantherefore the divine spirit is always standing by him, conducting him in every right way: but from other men, as I have said before, it very soon separates itself, and completes their life in the number of a hundred and twenty years. For God says, "their days shall be an hundred and twenty Years;


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

20 results
1. Hebrew Bible, Exodus, 31.2-31.3 (9th cent. BCE - 3rd cent. BCE)

31.2. רְאֵה קָרָאתִי בְשֵׁם בְּצַלְאֵל בֶּן־אוּרִי בֶן־חוּר לְמַטֵּה יְהוּדָה׃ 31.3. וָאֲמַלֵּא אֹתוֹ רוּחַ אֱלֹהִים בְּחָכְמָה וּבִתְבוּנָה וּבְדַעַת וּבְכָל־מְלָאכָה׃ 31.2. ’See, I have called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah;" 31.3. and I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship,"
2. Hebrew Bible, Genesis, 1.2, 2.7, 6.3-6.4, 16.7 (9th cent. BCE - 3rd cent. BCE)

1.2. וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים יִשְׁרְצוּ הַמַּיִם שֶׁרֶץ נֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה וְעוֹף יְעוֹפֵף עַל־הָאָרֶץ עַל־פְּנֵי רְקִיעַ הַשָּׁמָיִם׃ 1.2. וְהָאָרֶץ הָיְתָה תֹהוּ וָבֹהוּ וְחֹשֶׁךְ עַל־פְּנֵי תְהוֹם וְרוּחַ אֱלֹהִים מְרַחֶפֶת עַל־פְּנֵי הַמָּיִם׃ 2.7. וַיִּיצֶר יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים אֶת־הָאָדָם עָפָר מִן־הָאֲדָמָה וַיִּפַּח בְּאַפָּיו נִשְׁמַת חַיִּים וַיְהִי הָאָדָם לְנֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה׃ 6.3. וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה לֹא־יָדוֹן רוּחִי בָאָדָם לְעֹלָם בְּשַׁגַּם הוּא בָשָׂר וְהָיוּ יָמָיו מֵאָה וְעֶשְׂרִים שָׁנָה׃ 6.4. הַנְּפִלִים הָיוּ בָאָרֶץ בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם וְגַם אַחֲרֵי־כֵן אֲשֶׁר יָבֹאוּ בְּנֵי הָאֱלֹהִים אֶל־בְּנוֹת הָאָדָם וְיָלְדוּ לָהֶם הֵמָּה הַגִּבֹּרִים אֲשֶׁר מֵעוֹלָם אַנְשֵׁי הַשֵּׁם׃ 16.7. וַיִּמְצָאָהּ מַלְאַךְ יְהוָה עַל־עֵין הַמַּיִם בַּמִּדְבָּר עַל־הָעַיִן בְּדֶרֶךְ שׁוּר׃ 1.2. Now the earth was unformed and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God hovered over the face of the waters." 2.7. Then the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul." 6.3. And the LORD said: ‘My spirit shall not abide in man for ever, for that he also is flesh; therefore shall his days be a hundred and twenty years.’" 6.4. The Nephilim were in the earth in those days, and also after that, when the sons of nobles came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them; the same were the mighty men that were of old, the men of renown." 16.7. And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur."
3. Hebrew Bible, Numbers, 11.16 (9th cent. BCE - 3rd cent. BCE)

11.16. וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל־מֹשֶׁה אֶסְפָה־לִּי שִׁבְעִים אִישׁ מִזִּקְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֲשֶׁר יָדַעְתָּ כִּי־הֵם זִקְנֵי הָעָם וְשֹׁטְרָיו וְלָקַחְתָּ אֹתָם אֶל־אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד וְהִתְיַצְּבוּ שָׁם עִמָּךְ׃ 11.16. And the LORD said unto Moses: ‘Gather unto Me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom thou knowest to be the elders of the people, and officers over them; and bring them unto the tent of meeting, that they may stand there with thee."
4. Pindar, Olympian Odes, 2.56-2.80 (6th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

5. Plato, Phaedo, None (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

6. Plato, Timaeus, None (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

69d. which has within it passions both fearful and unavoidable—firstly, pleasure, a most mighty lure to evil; next, pains, which put good to rout; and besides these, rashness and fear, foolish counsellors both and anger, hard to dissuade; and hope, ready to seduce. And blending these with irrational sensation and with all-daring lust, they thus compounded in necessary fashion the mortal kind of soul. Wherefore, since they scrupled to pollute the divine, unless through absolute necessity
7. Cicero, Tusculan Disputations, 1.11.24 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

8. Philo of Alexandria, On Flight And Finding, 183, 186, 194, 182 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

182. The domit part of us, like a fountain, pours forth many powers through the veins of the earth as it were, till they reach the organs of the external senses, that is to say, the eyes, and ears, and nostrils, and other organs; and these organs in every animal are situated about the head and face. Therefore, the face, which is the domit portion of the soul; making the spirit, which is calculated for seeing, reach to the eyes, that which has the power of hearing reach the ears, the spirit of smelling reach the nostrils, that of taste the mouth, and causing that of touch to pervade the whole surface of the body. XXXIII.
9. Philo of Alexandria, On Giants, 14-15, 20-56, 13 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

13. And they having descended into the body as into a river, at one time are carried away and swallowed up by the voracity of a most violent whirlpool; and, at another time, striving with all their power to resist its impetuosity, they at first swim on the top of it, and afterwards fly back to the place from which they started.
10. Philo of Alexandria, On The Creation of The World, 135, 134 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

134. After this, Moses says that "God made man, having taken clay from the earth, and he breathed into his face the breath of life." And by this expression he shows most clearly that there is a vast difference between man as generated now, and the first man who was made according to the image of God. For man as formed now is perceptible to the external senses, partaking of qualities, consisting of body and soul, man or woman, by nature mortal. But man, made according to the image of God, was an idea, or a genus, or a seal, perceptible only by the intellect, incorporeal, neither male nor female, imperishable by nature.
11. Philo of Alexandria, On Planting, 19-20, 24, 44, 18 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

12. Philo of Alexandria, On Dreams, 1.30-1.33 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

1.30. Now then is the fourth element which exists within us, the domit mind, comprehensible to us in the same manner as these other divisions? Certainly not; for what do we think it to be in its essence? Do we look upon it as spirit, or as blood, or, in short, as any bodily substance! But it is not a substance, but must be pronounced incorporeal. Is it then a limit, or a species, or a number, or a continued act, or a harmony, or any existing thing whatever? 1.31. Is it, the very first moment that we are born, infused into us from without, or is it some warm nature in us which is cooled by the air which is diffused around us, like a piece of iron which has been heated at a forge, and then being plunged into cold water, is by that process tempered and hardened? (And perhaps it is from the cooling process [psyxis] to which it is thus submitted that the soul [heµ psycheµ] derives its name.) What more shall we say? When we die, is it extinguished and destroyed together with our bodies? or does it continue to live a long time? or, thirdly, is it wholly incorruptible and immortal? 1.32. Again, where, in what part does this mind lie hid? Has it received any settled habitation? For some men have dedicated it to our head, as the principal citadel, around which all the outward senses have their lairs; thinking it natural that its body-guards should be stationed near it, as near the palace of a mighty king. Some again contend earnestly in favour of the position which they assign it, believing that it is enshrined like a statue in the heart. 1.33. Therefore now the fourth element is incomprehensible, in the world of heaven, in comparison of the nature of the earth, of the water, and of the air; and the mind in man, in comparison of the body and the outward sense, and the speech, which is the interpreter of the mind; may it not be the case also, that for this reason the fourth year is described as holy and praiseworthy in the sacred scriptures?
13. Philo of Alexandria, On The Virtues, 200-205, 199 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

199. Again, who is there who would deny that those men who were born of him who was made out of the earth were noble themselves, and the founders of noble families? persons who have received a birth more excellent than that of any succeeding generation, in being sprung from the first wedded pair, from the first man and woman, who then for the first time came together for the propagation of offspring resembling themselves. But, nevertheless, when there were two persons so born, the elder of them endured to slay the younger; and, having committed the great and most accursed crime of fratricide, he first defiled the ground with human blood.
14. Philo of Alexandria, On The Life of Moses, 1.277 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

1.277. And he when he beheld it said: "Do thou, O king, build here seven altars, and offer upon every one of them a bullock and a ram. And I will turn aside and inquire of God what I am to say." So, having gone forth, immediately he became inspired, the prophetic spirit having entered into him, which drove all his artificial system of divination and cunning out of his soul; for it was not possible that holy inspiration should dwell in the same abode with magic. Then, returning back to the king, and beholding the sacrifices and the altars flaming, he became like the interpreter of some other being who was prompting his words
15. Philo of Alexandria, Allegorical Interpretation, 1.33-1.42, 3.161 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

1.33. But some one may ask, why God thought an earth-born mind, which was wholly devoted to the body, worthy of divine inspiration, and yet did not treat the one made after his own idea and image in the same manner. In the second place he may ask, what is the meaning of the expression "breathed into." And thirdly, why he breathed into his face: fourthly also, why, since he knew the name of the Spirit when he says, "And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the Waters," he now speaks of breath, and not of the Spirit. 1.34. Now in reply to the first question we must say this one thing; God being very munificent gives his good things to all men, even to those who are not perfect; inviting them to a participation and rivalry in virtue, and at the same time displaying his abundant riches, and showing that it is sufficient for those also who will not be greatly benefited by it; and he also shows this in the most evident manner possible in other cases; for when he rains on the sea, and when he raises up fountains in desert places, and waters shallow and rough and unproductive land, making the rivers to overflow with floods, what else is he doing but displaying the great abundance of his riches and of his goodness? This is the cause why he has created no soul in such a condition as to be wholly barren of good, even if the employment of that good be beyond the reach of some people. 1.35. We must also give a second reason, which is this: Moses wished to represent all the actions of the Deity as just--therefore a man who had not had a real life breathed into him, but who was ignorant of virtue, when he was chastised for the sins which he had committed would say that he was punished unjustly, in that it was only through ignorance of what was good that he had erred respecting it; and that he was to blame who had not breathed any proper wisdom into him; and perhaps he will even say, that he has absolutely committed no offence whatever; since some people affirm that actions done involuntarily and in ignorance have not the nature of offences. 1.36. Now the expression "breathed into" is equivalent to "inspired," or "gave life to" things iimate: for let us take care that we are never filled with such absurdity as to think that God employs the organs of the mouth or nostrils for the purpose of breathing into anything; for God is not only devoid of peculiar qualities, but he is likewise not of the form of man, and the use of these words shows some more secret mystery of nature; 1.37. for there must be three things, that which breathes in, that which receives what is breathed in, and that which is breathed in. Now that which breathes in is God, that which receives what is breathed in is the mind, and that which is breathed in is the spirit. What then is collected from these three things? A union of the three takes place, through God extending the power, which proceeds from himself through the spirit, which is the middle term, as far as the subject. Why does he do this, except that we may thus derive a proper notion of him? 1.38. Since how could the soul have perceived God if he had not inspired it, and touched it according to his power? For human intellect would not have dared to mount up to such a height as to lay claim to the nature of God, if God himself had not drawn it up to himself, as far as it was possible for the mind of man to be drawn up, and if he had not formed it according to those powers which can be comprehended. 1.39. And God breathed into man's face both physically and morally. Physically, when he placed the senses in the face: and this portion of the body above all others is vivified and inspired; and morally, in this manner, as the face is the domit portion of the body, so also is the mind the domit portion of the soul. It is into this alone that God breathes; but the other parts, the sensations, the power of speech, and the power of generation, he does not think worthy of his breath, for they are inferior in power. 1.40. By what then were these subordinate parts inspired? beyond all question by the mind; for of the qualities which the mind has received form God, it gives a share to the irrational portion of the soul, so that the mind is vivified by God, and the irrational part of the soul by the mind; for the mind is as it were a god to the irrational part of the soul, for which reason Moses did not hesitate to call it "the god of Pharaoh. 1.41. For of all created things some are created by God, and through him: some not indeed by God, but yet through him: and the rest have their existence both by him and through him. At all events Moses as he proceeds says, that God planted a paradise, and among the best things as made both by God and through God, is the mind. But the irrational part of the soul was made indeed by God but not through God, but through the reasoning power which bears rule and sovereignty in the soul; 1.42. and Moses has used the word "breath," not "spirit," as there is a difference between the two words; for spirit is conceived of according to strength, and intensity, and power; but breath is a gentle and moderate kind of breeze and exhalation; therefore the mind, which was created in accordance with the image and idea of God, may be justly said to partake in his spirit, for its reasoning has strength: but that which is derived from matter is only a partaker in a thin and very light air, being as it were a sort of exhalation, such as arises from spices; for they, although they be preserved intact, and are not exposed to fire or fumigation, do nevertheless emit a certain fragrance. XIV.
16. Philo of Alexandria, Who Is The Heir, 265, 55-57, 264 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

264. As long therefore as our mind still shines around and hovers around, pouring as it were a noontide light into the whole soul, we, being masters of ourselves, are not possessed by any extraneous influence; but when it approaches its setting, then, as is natural, a trance, which proceeds from inspiration, takes violent hold of us, and madness seizes upon us, for when the divine light sets this other rises and shines
17. Philo of Alexandria, That The Worse Attacks The Better, 80, 114 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

114. but of the lovers of knowledge the prophet speaks in a great song, and says, "That she has made them to ascend upon the strength of the earth, and has fed them upon the produce of the Fields," showing plainly that the godless man fails in attaining his object, in order that he may grieve the more while strength is not added to these operations in which he expends his energies, but while on the other hand it is take from them; but they who follow after virtue, placing it above all these things which are earthly and mortal, disregard their strength in their exceeding abundance, using God as the guide to conduct them in their ascent, who proffers to them the produce of the earth for their enjoyment and most profitable use, likening the virtues to fields, and the fruits of the virtues to the produce of the fields, according to the principles of their generation; for from prudence is derived prudent action, and from temperance temperate action, and from piety pious conduct, and from each of the other virtues is derived the energy in accordance with it. XXXI.
18. Philo of Alexandria, That God Is Unchangeable, 3, 2 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

2. and a mention of the divine spirit has already been made, as he has already stated, that it is very difficult for it to remain throughout all ages in the soul, which is divisible into many parts, and which assumes many forms, and is clothed with a most heavy burden, namely its bulk of flesh; after this spirit, therefore, the angels of God go in unto the daughters of men.
19. Josephus Flavius, Jewish Antiquities, 3.100, 3.212, 18.87 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

3.212. 8. But Moses refused all that honor which he saw the multitude ready to bestow upon him, and attended to nothing else but the service of God. He went no more up to Mount Sinai; but he went into the tabernacle, and brought back answers from God for what he prayed for. His habit was also that of a private man, and in all other circumstances he behaved himself like one of the common people, and was desirous to appear without distinguishing himself from the multitude, but would have it known that he did nothing else but take care of them. 18.87. but Pilate prevented their going up, by seizing upon file roads with a great band of horsemen and foot-men, who fell upon those that were gotten together in the village; and when it came to an action, some of them they slew, and others of them they put to flight, and took a great many alive, the principal of which, and also the most potent of those that fled away, Pilate ordered to be slain.
20. Josephus Flavius, Jewish War, 1.31, 1.420, 6.47 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

1.31. Now these caves were in the precipices of craggy mountains, and could not be come at from any side, since they had only some winding pathways, very narrow, by which they got up to them; but the rock that lay on their front had beneath it valleys of a vast depth, and of an almost perpendicular declivity; insomuch that the king was doubtful for a long time what to do, by reason of a kind of impossibility there was of attacking the place. Yet did he at length make use of a contrivance that was subject to the utmost hazard; 1.31. 1. At the same time that Antiochus, who was called Epiphanes, had a quarrel with the sixth Ptolemy about his right to the whole country of Syria, a great sedition fell among the men of power in Judea, and they had a contention about obtaining the government; while each of those that were of dignity could not endure to be subject to their equals. However, Onias, one of the high priests, got the better, and cast the sons of Tobias out of the city; 6.47. For what man of virtue is there who does not know, that those souls which are severed from their fleshly bodies in battles by the sword are received by the ether, that purest of elements, and joined to that company which are placed among the stars; that they become good demons, and propitious heroes, and show themselves as such to their posterity afterwards?


Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
acherusian sea (lake) Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
aeschylus Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
afterlife Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
allegory, allegorical interpretation, philo Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
allegory, allegorical interpretation Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
angels, philo of alexandria Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 216
aristophanes Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
aristotle Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
artapanus Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
ascent, adam, of Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
ascent, frightful Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
ascent, soul, of Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
ascent Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
belief Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
body Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
bultmann school Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
cave Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
fate, adam, of Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
god, presence of Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
hades Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
hellenism, hellenistic, concept of spirit Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
hesiod Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
homer Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
imagery, storm Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
judaism, mosess divine spirit Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 216
judaism, nous Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214
judaism, pneuma (spirit) Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
judaism, prophetic spirit, summary Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 227
judaism, spirit of god, divine spirit Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216
judaism, spirit of prophecy Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 227
judaism, sun, symbol of human mind Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 227
judaism in egypt, philo of alexandria Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
judaism in egypt Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
mark, gospel writer Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
matthew, gospel author Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
miracle Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
moses Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
origen Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
paul Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
philo of alexandria, angels Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 216
philo of alexandria Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
plato/platonic Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
progeny Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
resurrection Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
scholarship, qumran Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
sinai Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
sophocles Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
soul, adam, of Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
spirit, characterizations as, down payment (ἀρραβών) Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
spirit, characterizations as, heavenly substance Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
spirit, characterizations as, power Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
spirit, characterizations as, seal/pledge Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
spirit, divine Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
spirit, effects of, miracles' Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 28
spirit, philo of alexandria Potter Suh and Holladay, Hellenistic Jewish Literature and the New Testament: Collected Essays (2021) 214, 216, 227
strabo Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129
virtue Levison, The Greek Life of Adam and Eve (2023) 457
zeus Geljon and Runia, Philo of Alexandria: On Planting: Introduction, Translation and Commentary (2019) 129