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9232
Philo Of Alexandria, On The Posterity Of Cain, 57-58


nanBut On is said to be a hill, and it means, symbolically, the mind; for all reasonings are stored up in the mind: and the lawgiver himself is a witness of this, calling On, Heliopolis, the city of the sun. For as the sun, when he rises, shows visibly the things which have been hidden by night, so also the mind, sending forth its own proper light, causes all bodies and all things to be seen visibly at a distance.


nanOn which account, a man would not be wrong who called our minds the sun of our composition; as the mind, if it does not rise and shed its own light in man, who may be looked upon as a small world, leaves a great darkness diffused over all existing things, and suffers nothing to be brought to light. XVII.


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

18 results
1. Plato, Gorgias, None (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

504d. Soc. And the regular and orderly states of the soul are called lawfulness and law, whereby men are similarly made law-abiding and orderly; and these states are justice and temperance. Do you agree or not? Call. Be it so. Soc. Then it is this that our orator, the man of art and virtue, will have in view, when he applies to our souls the words that he speaks, and also in all his actions, and in giving any gift he will give it, and in taking anything away he will take it, with this thought always before his mind—
2. Plato, Phaedrus, None (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

246a. that that which moves itself is nothing else than the soul,—then the soul would necessarily be ungenerated and immortal. Concerning the immortality of the soul this is enough; but about its form we must speak in the following manner. To tell what it really is would be a matter for utterly superhuman and long discourse, but it is within human power to describe it briefly in a figure; let us therefore speak in that way. We will liken the soul to the composite nature of a pair of winged horses and a charioteer. Now the horses and charioteers of the gods are all good and
3. Theocritus, Idylls, 17 (4th cent. BCE - 3rd cent. BCE)

4. Philo of Alexandria, On The Life of Abraham, 119 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

119. This then is sufficient to say by way of a literal explanation of this account; we must now speak of that which may be given if the story be looked at as figurative and symbolical. The things which are expressed by the voice are the signs of those things which are conceived in the mind alone; when, therefore, the soul is shone upon by God as if at noonday, and when it is wholly and entirely filled with that light which is appreciable only by the intellect, and by being wholly surrounded with its brilliancy is free from all shade or darkness, it then perceives a threefold image of one subject, one image of the living God, and others of the other two, as if they were shadows irradiated by it. And some such thing as this happens to those who dwell in that light which is perceptible by the outward senses, for whether people are standing still or in motion, there is often a double shadow falling from them.
5. Philo of Alexandria, On The Cherubim, 96 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

96. And if any one of the beasts, to be sacrificed, is found to be not perfect and entire, it is driven out of the sacred precincts, and is not allowed to be brought to the altar, even though all these corporeal imperfections are quite involuntary on its part; but though they may themselves be wounded in their souls by sensible diseases, which the invincible power of wickedness has inflicted on them, or though, I might rather say, they are mutilated and curtailed of their fairest proportions, of prudence, and courage, and justice, piety, and of all the other virtues which the human race is naturally formed to possess, and although too they have contracted all this pollution and mutilation of their own free will, they nevertheless dare to perform sacrifices, thinking that the eye of God sees external objects alone, when the sun co-operates and throws light upon them, and that it cannot discern what is invisible in preference to what is visible, using itself as its own light. 96. The fourth commandment has reference to the sacred seventh day, that it may be passed in a sacred and holy manner. Now some states keep the holy festival only once in the month, counting from the new moon, as a day sacred to God; but the nation of the Jews keep every seventh day regularly, after each interval of six days;
6. Philo of Alexandria, On Drunkenness, 44 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

44. for as the sun, when he has arisen, hides the stars, pouring forth his own light altogether over our sight, so also when the beams of the light-giving God, unmingled as they are, and entirely pure, and visible at the greatest distance, shone upon the eye of the soul, being comprehensible only by the intellect, then the eye of the soul can see nothing else; for the knowledge of the living God having beamed upon it, out-dazzles everything else, so that even those things which are most brilliant by their own intrinsic light appear to be dark in comparison.
7. Philo of Alexandria, On Giants, 17 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

17. And the expression used by the writer of the psalm, in the following verse, testifies to the truth of my assertion, for he says, "He sent upon them the fury of His wrath, anger, and rage, and affliction, and he sent evil angels among Them." These are the wicked who, assuming the name of angels, not being acquainted with the daughters of right reason, that is with the sciences and the virtues, but which pursue the mortal descendants of mortal men, that is the pleasures, which can confer no genuine beauty, which is perceived by the intellect alone, but only a bastard sort of elegance of form, by means of which the outward sense is beguiled;
8. Philo of Alexandria, On The Creation of The World, 82 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

82. I have now mentioned the second reason. There is also a third, which is as follows:--God, intending to adapt the beginning and the end of all created things together, as being all necessary and dear to one another, made heaven the beginning, and man the end: the one being the most perfect of incorruptible things, among those things which are perceptible by the external senses; and the other, the best of all earthborn and perishable productions--a short-lived heaven if one were to speak the truth, bearing within himself many starlike natures, by means of certain arts and sciences, and illustrious speculations, according to every kind of virtue. For since the corruptible and the incorruptible, are by nature opposite, he has allotted the best thing of each species to the beginning and to the end. Heaven, as I before said, to the beginning, and man to the end. XXVIII.
9. Philo of Alexandria, On Planting, 40 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

10. Philo of Alexandria, On The Posterity of Cain, 39, 43, 49-51, 58, 60, 63-65, 77-78, 80, 38 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

38. and if any one accuses you of impiety, make your defence with a good courage, saying that you have been brought up very admirably by your guide and teacher, Cain, who recommended you to honour the powers that are nearest in preference to that cause which was afar off, to whom you ought to attend for many other reasons, and most especially because he showed the power of his doctrine by very evident works, having conquered Abel the expounder of the opposite doctrine, and having removed and destroyed his doctrine as well as himself.
11. Philo of Alexandria, On Dreams, 1.72 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

1.72. And he subsequently alleges a reason why he "met the place;" for, says he, "the sun was Set." Not meaning the sun which appears to us, but the most brilliant and radiant light of the invisible and Almighty God. When this light shines upon the mind, the inferior beams of words (that is of angels) set. And much more are all the places perceptible by the external senses overshadowed; but when he departs in a different direction, then they all rise and shine.
12. Philo of Alexandria, On The Virtues, 164, 220-225, 12 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

12. for these last see only the surfaces of the things presented to them, and require light from without to enable them to do that, but the intellect penetrates into the inmost recesses of bodies, closely surveying and investigating the whole of them, and each separate part, and also the natures of those incorporeal things, which the external senses are unable to contemplate at all. For the mind may almost be said to possess all the acuteness of vision of the eye, without being in need of any spurious light, but being in itself a star, and as it were a sort of representation or copy of the heavenly bodies:
13. Philo of Alexandria, On The Life of Moses, 2.41-2.44, 2.271 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

2.41. On which account, even to this very day, there is every year a solemn assembly held and a festival celebrated in the island of Pharos, to which not only the Jews but a great number of persons of other nations sail across, reverencing the place in which the first light of interpretation shone forth, and thanking God for that ancient piece of beneficence which was always young and fresh. 2.42. And after the prayers and the giving of thanks some of them pitched their tents on the shore, and some of them lay down without any tents in the open air on the sand of the shore, and feasted with their relations and friends, thinking the shore at that time a more beautiful abode than the furniture of the king's palace. 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. 2.271. at which Moses as very indigt, first of all, at all the people having thus suddenly become blind, which but a short time before had been the most sharp-sighted of all nations; and secondly, at a vain invention of fable being able to extinguish such exceeding brilliancy of truth, which even the sun in its eclipse or the whole company of the stars could never darken; for it is comprehended by its own light, appreciable by the intellect and incorporeal, in comparison of which the light, which is perceptible by the external senses, is like night if compared to day.
14. Philo of Alexandria, Allegorical Interpretation, 1.46, 1.70-1.73, 2.30, 3.171, 3.236-3.241 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

1.46. Moreover, the plantation of this paradise is represented in the east; for right reason never sets, and is never extinguished, but it is its nature to be always rising. And as I imagine, the rising sun fills the darkness of the air with light, so also does virtue when it has arisen in the soul, irradiate its mist and dissipate the dense darkness. 1.70. It is worth while therefore to raise the question why courage has been spoken of as the second virtue, and temperance as the third, and prudence as the first; and why Moses has not also explained the course of action of the other virtues. Now we must understand that our soul is divided into three parts, and that it has one portion which is conversant about reason; another which is subject to passion; and another which is that in which the desires are conceived. And we find that the proper place and abode of the reasoning part of the soul, is the head; of the passionate part, the chest; and of the part in which the desires are conceived, the stomach. And we find that appropriate virtues are adapted to each of these parts. To the rational part, prudence; in it is the office of reason, to have a knowledge of what one might, and of what one ought not to do. And the virtue of the passionate part of the soul is courage: and of the appetitive part, temperance. For it is through temperance that we remedy and cure the appetites. 1.71. For as the head is the principle and uppermost part of the animal, and the chest the next highest, and the liver the third, in point both of importance and of position; so in the soul again, the first is the rational part, the second the passionate part, and the third the appetitive part. In the same way again of the virtues; the first is that which is conversant about the first portion of the soul, which is the reasoning portion, and which at the same time has its abode in the head of the body; in short it is prudence. And the second of the virtues is courage, because it is conversant about the second portion of the soul, namely, about passion, and has its abode in the second portion of the body, namely, in the chest. And the third virtue is temperance, which is placed in the stomach which is the third portion of the body, and it is conversant about the appetitive part, which has been allotted the third part of the soul, as being its subject matter. XXIII. 1.72. And the fourth river," continues Moses, "is the river Euphrates." And this name Euphrates means fertility; and symbolically taken, it is the fourth virtue, namely, justice, which is most truly a productive virtue, and one which gladdens the intellect. When therefore does this happen? When the three parts of the soul are all in harmony with one another; and harmony among them is in reality the predomice of the most important; as for instance, when the two inferior parts, the passionate and the appetitive part, are disposed to yield to the superior part, then justice exists. For it is just that the better portion should rule at all times, and in all places, and that the inferior part should be ruled. Now the rational part is the better part, and the appetitive and the passionate parts are the inferior ones. 1.73. But when, on the contrary, passion and appetite get riotous and disobey the reins, and by the violence of their impetuosity throw off and disregard the charioteer, that is to say reason, and when each of these passions get hold of the reins themselves, then there is injustice. For it is inevitable, that through any ignorance or vice of the charioteer, the chariot must be borne down over precipices, and must fall into the abyss; just as it must be saved when the charioteer is endowed with skill and virtue. XXIV.
15. Philo of Alexandria, That The Worse Attacks The Better, 118 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

118. This rock, Moses, in another place, using a synonymous expression, calls manna the most ancient word of God, by which appellation is understood, something of the most general possible nature, from which two cakes are made, one of honey and the other of oil, that is to say, two different systems of life, exceedingly difficult to distinguish from one another, both worthy of attention, at the very beginning instilling the sweetness of these contemplations which exist in the sciences, and again emitting the most brilliant light to those who take hold of the things which are the objects of their desire, not fastidiously, but firmly, and scarcely by means of unremitting and incessant perseverance. These then, as I have said before, are they who ascend up upon the strength of the earth. XXXII.
16. Philo of Alexandria, That God Is Unchangeable, 3, 45-46, 135 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

135. but when the real priest, conviction, enters our hearts, like a most pure ray of light, then we think that the designs which we have cherished within our souls are not pure, and we see that our actions are liable to blame, and deserving of reproach, though we did them through ignorance of what was right. All these things, therefore, the priest, that is to say, conviction, pollutes, and orders that they should be taken away and stripped off, in order that he may see the abode of the soul pure, 35 and, if there are any diseases in it, that he may heal them. XXIX.
17. Philo of Alexandria, Plant., 40 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

40. And the statement that "the Paradise was in the east," is a proof of what has been here said. For folly is a thing of darkness and setting, and which brings on the night; but wisdom is a most brilliant thing, radiant all around, and in the truest sense of the word, rising. And, as the sun, when it arises, fills the whole circle of the heaven with its light, so in the same manner, when the beams of virtue shine forth, they made the whole place occupied by the mind full of pure light.
18. Plotinus, Enneads, 1.1.12, 4.8.5 (3rd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
alexandria, pharos, island of Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
alexandria, pharos, lighthouse Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
alexandria, philos perspective on Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
alexandria Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
angels Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
anger Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
appian of alexandria Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
aristeas, letter of Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
aristotle, de anima Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
athenaeus Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
bilhah Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
chariot, myth of the Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
courage Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
cowardice Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
desire Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
disease/illness Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
earth Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
foreign women Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
gentiles, non-jews (christians, muslims) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
greek, language Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
health Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
immortal(ity) Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
joseph Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
justice Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
light Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
memory, cultural Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
midianite women Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
moses, in philos life of moses Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
moses Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
philo judeas Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
philo of alexandria Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
philos perspective Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
phineas Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
plotinus Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
plutarch Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
potiphars wife Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
prudence Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
ptolemy ii philadelphus, in philos life of moses Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
ptolemy ii philadelphus Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
reason/rational Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
reason Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
seductive women Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
septuagint (lxx) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
soul;' Frey and Levison, The Holy Spirit, Inspiration, and the Cultures of Antiquity Multidisciplinary Perspectives (2014) 282
stars Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
sun, the Wilson, Philo of Alexandria: On Virtues: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary (2010) 109
tamar Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111
theocritus Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
torah (pentateuch) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 251
zilpah Sly, Philo's Perception of Women (1990) 111