Wednesday, September 24, 2014

"City of God" XIX.3

Chapter 3:
In further narrowing down the philosophical options in pursuit of truth, Varro argues that man is neither just soul nor just body, but a combination of the two, "much as we say a 'team' is made up of two horses harnessed together... We never say that either of them, however closely linked with his mate, is the team, but that the pair is the team." Therefore, the highest good of man must be good for both body and soul. This is found only in virtue, which cares for both body and soul and which alone can make us happy. This virtue requires a number of things in order to develop in the human life, including education and society (though we may be a bit flexible in where we find these last two things--"society" may just mean "the world at large", or "our own households"). Everything other than this is a matter of relative indifference among philosophers, for example, what does it matter whether or not a philosophers dresses and eats like a Cynic, so long as he holds to these truths?

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