On the Nature of Man (Full Text)

Nemesius of Emesa’s On the Nature of Man #

Translated from the Greek by William Telfer

Chapter 1 #

A multis et prudentibus viris confirmatum est hominem anima intellegibili et corpore tam bene compositum, ut nequaquam oportuerit eum aliter fieri vel consistere. Sed ex eo, quod intellegibilem habere dicitur animam, dubitationem habent, utrum superveniens intellectus animae ut alius aliam intellegibilem eam fecerit, an intellectum anima a se ipsa naturaliter possederit et hic sit eius optima pars ut oculus corporis.
Not a few persons of standing have asserted that man is admirably composed of an understanding soul and a body, and, indeed, that he could hardly exist, or be composed, otherwise. But the phrase, “understanding soul” is ambiguous. Did one thing, understanding, come to another thing, the soul, and beget understanding in it? Or did the soul, by its own nature, include understanding, as its most excellent member, so that understanding is to the soul what the eye is to the body?
Sed quidam, quorum est Plotinus, aliam esse animam et alium intellectum docentes ex tribus hominem constare volunt, corpore scilicet et anima et intellectu. Quos imitatus est Apolinarius Laodicensis episcopus. Hoc namque firmans fundamentum propriae sententiae et reliqua superaedificavit secundum doctrinam propriam. Quidam vero non separant ab anima intellectum, sed suae essentiae principalem esse illum asseverant.
Some, and these include Plotinus, hold that soul and mind are different entities, and make man consist of three distinct components, soul, body, and mind. Apollinarius, when bishop of Laodicea, followed this school, and made their notion that basis of his own opinion, building up the rest of his system upon it. Others, instead of thus making soul and mind different entities, suppose understanding to be the guiding principle inherent in the soul’s being.
Aristoteles autem potestate quidem intellectum complasmatum esse homini refert, actu vero extrinsecus nobis contingere probat non ad essentiam hominis supplentem, sed supervenientem ad profectum notitiae et contemplationis naturalium. Valde igitur paucos hominum et solos philosophantes actu intellectum habere confirmat.
Aristotle, in fact, holds the opinion that a potentiality of understanding is coeval with man’s constitution, but that we acquire actual understanding from without, and that, when acquired, it does not contribute anything fresh to man’s being and nature. What it does is to increase knowledge of physical things and to advance speculation about them. And that is why Aristotle credits few men, and those only such as have given themselves to philosophy, with the possession of actual understanding.
Plato autem inquit hominem non esse utrumque, animam et corpus, sed animam corpore tali utentem, melius contemplatus quae sunt circa hominem; et inde nos convertit ad animae solius divinitatem et studium, ut animam nos ipsos esse credentes animae bona sola diligamus atque sequamur, virtutes quidem et beatitudinem, et non corporis desideria amemus tamquam non existentia hominis, sed animalis quidem principaliter, hominis vero consequenter, quoniam et animal est homo.
Plato seems not to regard man as a twofold being of soul and body, but as a soul that makes use of such and such a body; this he does to set human nature in a more dignified light. From the start he concentrates all our attention upon the divinity and preciousness of the soul, so that, once we are persuaded to identify oureslves with the soul, we shall give ourselves up wholly to the quest of virtue, godliness, and whatever else is for the soul’s good. Likewise, we shall not love carnal desires, since they are not characteristic of man as such, being primarily characteristic of him insofar as he is animal, and only secondarily characteristic of him as man, inasmuch as man is, but incidentally, animal.
Sed et aliter digniorem corpore animam esse cunctis hominibus manifestum est. Ab hac namque movetur corpus ut instrumentum, quod mors demonstrat. Separata namque anima immobile remanet corpus omnino et absque opere, ut semoto artifice immobilia manent instrumenta.
There is, in fact, general consent that the soul deserves more regard than the body, and that, indeed, the body is only an instrument employed by the soul. The truth of this is proved by death. For, when death severs soul from body, the body lies completely still and passive, just like a workman’s tools after he has gone away and left them lying.
Manifestum autem, quia et inanimatis communicat et irrationabilium animalium participat vita et rationabilium participat notitia. Communicat namque inanimatis per corpus et per quattuor elementorum temperantiam. Plantis vero et per haec et per nutribilem et generativam virtutem, irrationabilibus autem et in his quidem, secundum vero moderationem et per motum ad pacitum et per appetitum et furorem et per sensibilem atque flatilem virtutem. Haec etenim omnia communia sunt hominibus et irrationabilibus, licet non omnibus omnia. Coniungitur autem per rationabilitatem quidem incorporeis et intellectualibus naturis ratiocinans et dinoscens ac diiudicans singula et virtutes sequens virtutumque summitatem concupiscens, beatitudinem scilicet.
It is well known that man has some things in common with the inanimate creatures, and shares life with the plant and animal creation, while partaking intelligence in common with all beings endowed with reason. With inanimate things he shares a material body mingled of the four elements. With plants he shares not only this but also the faculties of self-nutriment and generation. With irrational animals he shares all these things, and, in addition, a range of voluntary movements, together with the faculties of appetite, anger, feeling and respiration. All these things man and the irrational animals have in common, if not everywhere on equal terms. Finally, by being rational, man shares with the incorporeal rational intelligences the prerogative of applying, to whatever he will, reason, understanding, and judgment. So he pursues virtues, and follows after godliness, in which the quest of every several virtue finds its goal.
Ideoque tamquam in medio est intelectualis atque sensibilis essentiae, coniunctus quidem per corpus corporalesque virtutes animalibus aliis et inanimatis, per rationabilitatem vero incorporeis substantiis, ut praedictum est. Creator etenim gradatim et per modicum coniunxit adinvicem diversas naturas, ut unam esse uniusque generis omnem creaturam constaret.
It follows from these considerations that man’s being is on the boundary between the intelligible order and the phenomenal order. As touching his body and its faculties, he is on par with the irrational animate, and with the inanimate, creatures. As touching his rational faculties, he claims kinship, as we said, with incorporeal beings. It would seem that the Creator linked up each several order of creation with the next so as to make the whole universe one and akin.
Unde maxime patet unum esse omnium existentium creatorem. Non enim solum univit essentiam indivisibilium secundum partem, sed et singula adinvicem coniunxit proprie. Quemadmodum namque in unoquoque animalium univit insensibilia sensibilibus, ossa et axungiam atque pilos aliaque insensibilia sensibilibus nervis, et fecit ex insensibilibus et sensibilibus compositum animal et non solum compositum, sed et unum existens ostendit: eodem quoquoe modo fecit et in alia secundum speciem creatura coniungens adinvicem gradatim proprietate et mutatione naturae.
We may see herein the best proof that the whole universe is the creation of one God. For not only has he united all particular things in making them members of one order of reality, but he has made them fit together, each to each. Consider, for example, how, in every animate creature the Creator joined insensible parts, such as bone, fat, or hair, with sentient tissues, like the masses of flesh, and fleshy organs, to make, out of the insensible and sensitive parts, one composite living thing. See how he has demonstrated such a creature to be not merely a composite whole but an individual unity! Or consider, again, how he made all the different kinds of things in the rest of creation to fit each to the next, by the introduction of some small difference into a general agreement.
Ut non multum distarent inanimata omnino a plantis habentibus nutribilem virtutem, neque haec ab irrationabilibus et sensibilibus animalibus nec irrationabilia a rationabilibus alienarentur omnino et inconvenientia et sine vinculo quolibet essent colligante et naturali. Differt etenim lapis etiam a lapide virtute qualibet. Lapis magnetes praecellere videtur aliorum lapidum naturam ac virtutem in hoc, quod manifeste trahit ad se atque continet ferrum, tamquam escam sibi facere volens, et non solum in uno hoc efficit, sed et aliud per aliud continet dando cunctis habitis suam virtutem. Continet igitur et ferrum ferrum, quando a magnete fuerit habitum.
There is no so marked difference between inanimate things and plants, but for the self-nutrient faculty of the latter. Likewise plants are not so different from irrational, but sentient, animals, nor are these, in turn, in total contrast with the rational creatures. One order is not unrelated to another, nor do they lack palpable and natural bonds of union. For example, while some inherent power makes one kind of stone differ from another, the lodestone seems to stand out, in comparison with other stones, by its celebrated power of first attracting, and then holding, iron to itself, as if it would feed upon it. More extraordinary still, when it has gripped one piece of iron, and by imparting to every such piece held by it, its own power of attraction, it uses that piece to get hold of another. In fact, iron, after it has been in contact with lodestone, attracts iron.
Sic iterum consequenter a plantis ad animalia procedens non confestim ad mobilem et sensibilem pervenit naturam, sed gradatim et modice ad hanc studiose pervenit. Pinnas namque et ericios marinos velut sensibiles plantas fecit. Radicavit namque haec in mari quasi plantas et verlut ligna apposuit ostraca et stare fecit ut plantas et sensum eis dedit tangibilem omnium quidem animalium sensum communem, ut communicent plantis, quia radicantur et instant, animalibus vero, quia tactum possident. Spongiam igitur et quae in petris innascuntur et extendi at attrahi, cum senserint advenire aliquem, Aristoteles narrat. Ideoque haec omnia antiqui philosopherum consueverunt vocare zoophyta.
Again, when the Creator passed in turn from the creation of plants to that of animals, we may suppose that he did not, so to say, leap from the one order to the next, and suddenly make creatures endowed with the powers of locomotion and sensation. Rather, he advanced towards this end by slow degrees and seemly moderation. He framed the marine animals called pinna and sea-nettle to have all the appearance of sensitive plants. Like plants he fixed them to the bed of the sea as if with roots. He surrounded them with shells as trees grow bark, rendering them stationary like plants. Nevertheless, he implanted in them the sense common to the whole animal creation, the sense of touch. They are thus like plants in being rooted and stationary, and like animals in their possession of feeling or perception. Aristotle observed that sponges, in like manner, though they grow on the rocks, close and open, or, rather, spread themselves out, as in self-defense, when they perceive anything approaching. For this reason the scientists of ancient days used to call them, and all such creatures, Zoophytes.
Իսկ դարձեալ ի պինսն եւ յայլսն խեցեմորթսն՝ հպեցոյց զգայուն կենդանեացն լինելութիւնն, զոչ կարողացն երթալ հեռաւոր, այլ անդէն անդ շարժեցելոց. քանզի եւ այսպիսիք ինչ բազումք ի խեցեմորթիցն, որք կոչին փորոտիք երկրի։ Եւ այսպէս ըստ մասին յաւելեալ ոմանց զգայութիւնս առաւելագոյնս, իսկ ոմանց՝ զգնալն առաւելագոյն, ի կատարելագոյնն անբանից կենդանեացն հասանէ. եւ ասեմ կատարելոագոյնս՝ զունողսն զամենայն զգայութիւնսն եւ զկարողսն գնալ հեռաւորս։ Իսկ դարձեալ փոխանցելով յանբանիցն կենդանեացն ի բանական կենդանի՝ մարդն, եւ ոչ զնա անդէն վաղվաղակի կազմեաց, այլ նախկին եւ յայլսն կենդանիս եդ բնաւորականս իմն հանճարս, հնարս, խորամանկութիւնս առ ի փրկութիւն, որպէս զի մերձ ի բանաւորսն երեւել նոցա. եւ այսպէս զճշմարտապէս բանական կենդանի՝ զմարդն՝ ած յառաջ։ Ըստ նմին օրինակի եւ զձայնն խնդրեալ գտցես. ի պարզ եւ ի միատեսակ ձայնէ ձիոյ եւ արջառոյ ըստ մասին՝ ի պէսպէս եւ ի զանազան եկեալ յառաջ՝ յագռաւուց եւ յայլոց նմանախօսիցն հաւուց ձայն, մինչեւ ցյօդաւորն եւ կատարեալ ձայն մարդոյն վախճանեաց։
Iterumque pinnis et aliis huiusmodi proximavit mobilium animalium genus, sed longius ire non velntium, circa endum vero locum se moventium, qualia sunt plurima eorum, quae dicuntur ostracodermata et vermes terreni. Deinde paulatim apponens aliis quidem plus sensibilitatis, aliis vero plus mobilitatis ad perfectiora pervenit irrationabilium animalium. Dico autem perfectiora omnes sensus habentia longiusque ire valentia. Iterumque promovens ab irrationabilibus ad rationale animal, hominem, neque hoc repente condidit, sed prius aliis animalibus naturales quasdam notitias et ingenia astutiasque ad salvationem indidit, ut propinqua rationabilium ipsa apparent, et sic creavit hominem, verum rationale animal. Hoc etiam modo et in voce quaerens invenies ex simplici et uniformi equorum et boum exclamationem. Paulatim vero variatam ac diversam corvorum et modulantium avium voces, donec ad articulatam et perfectam hominis devenias.
After the pinna and such like creatures, God made next the animals with but a very limited range of movement, yet able to move themselves from one place to another. Such are most of the shell-fish, and earthworms. Next he endowed particular species with more of this or that faculty, such as sentience or locomotion, until he reached the highest types of animal. By that, I mean those animals which possess all the senses, and are capable of unrestricted movement. And when God passed from the irrational animals to create a rational living creature, man, he did not introduce this rational creature abruptly, but led up to it, by the development, in certain animals, of instinctive intelligence, of devices and clever tricks for self-preservation, which make them appear almost rational. Only after them did God bring forth man, the truly rational living creature. You may observe the same progression if you investigate the particular vocal sounds that living things emit. Beginning with the simple and monotonous noises made, for example, by horses and cows, the Creator advanced gradually to the varied and remarkably inflected utterances of daws or talking-birds, and only left off when he reached man’s articulate and perfect speech.
Sicque articulatam locutionem adhibuit notitiae et rationi, nuntiam eam faciens motionum intellectus. Et sic omnibus omnia concordanter captavit colligavitque et in unum conduxit visibilia et invisibilia genere hominum mediante.
Again, he attached articulate speech to thought and reasoning, so that it should communicate what was going on in the mind. Thus God, everywhere fitting one thing to another harmoniously, bound them all together, uniting in one bond things intelligible and things phenomenal, by means of his creation of man.
Ideoque bene Moyses creationem exponens postremo narrat hominem factum, non solum quod omnibus propter eum conditis necesse esset prius creari usui eius habenda et sic ipsum utentum apponi, sed quia invisibilis essentiae atque visibilis quoddam oportuit fieri utriusque colligamentum, ut unum essent omnia et adinvicem competientia nec a se ipsis aliena. Factum est igitur utrasque colligans naturans animal, homo. Ad enarrandum igitur breviter sapientiam creatoris haec satis sint.
The foregoing considerations justify the Mosaic story of creation when it makes man the last to be created. For, not only was it logical that, if all other creatures were made for his sake, they should be provided in advance for him to use, and that, then, he, the intended user, should be created only when all was ready, but there was another reason besides. God created both an intelligible and a phenomenal order, and required some one creature to link these two together, in such wise that the entire universe should form one agreeable unity, unbroken by internal incoherences. For this reason, then, man was made a living creature such as should combine together the intelligible and phenomenal natures. So then, to put great matter in few words, we see how wonderful is the wisdom of our Creator.
Quod in medio irrationabilis rationabilisque naturae homo postius, siquidem corpori inflectetur magisque corporea concupierit dilexeritque vitam irrationabilium, his quidem connumerabitur terrenuseque vocabitur iuxta Paulum et audiet: “Terra es et in terram reverteris” et “Comparatus est iumentis irrationabilibus et similis factus est illis”. Quod si per rationabilitatem erigetur omnes floccipendens delectations corporeas, ad divinam et deo dilectam vitam perveniet hominique principaliter dispositam et erit quasi caelestis secundum quod doctum est: “Qualis terrenus, tales et terrei, et quails caelestis, tales et caelestes”.
In being so constituted, man finds himself on the border that separates rational from irrational. If he leans towards the things of the body, and finds his satisfaction in carnal pleasures, he thereby makes his choice to live like the irrational animals. So he should be accounted one of them, and be called, in Paul’s words, “a man of earth,” to whom is said, “Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return,” and “He shall be compared unto the beasts that have no understanding, and is likened unto them.” If, on the other hand, man advances in the direction of reason, despises all carnal pleasures, and pursues the divinely favored life that is specifically man’s, he will then deserve to be called a “heavenly man,” in accordance with the Apostle’s words, “Such as is the earthy, such also are they that are earthy, and such as is the heavenly, such also are they that are heavenly.”
Rationalis vero naturae capitale est haec fugere et averti a malis. Sed quia bonorum haec quidem sunt communia animae et corporis ad animam quidem magis pertinentia, dum corpore anima utitur, ut virtutes, haec vero sunt solius animae secundum ipsam solam corpore non indigentem, ut beatitudo et existentium contemplation. Quicumque igitur hominis vita mut hominis vivere elegerint et non ut tantum animalis, ad virtutem perveniunt et ad beatitudinem.
The chief characteristic of the nature that is ruled by reason is to avoid and avert evils, and to search out and choose the good. One sort of good applies alike to soul and body, such as virtues, which have their reference indeed to the soul, but to the soul in so far as it makes use of body. Another sort of good concerns the soul only, in its own proper functions, without involving the body, such as godliness or philosophic contemplation. Wherefore, those who choose to live as men indeed, and not just to live that life which is at animal level, pursue virtue and godliness.
Sed quae ad virtutes quaeve ad beatitudinem pertineant, in sequentibus determinabitur, cum de anima et corpore reddiderimus rationem. Ignoto namque quid sit nostra anima, inconveniens est de virtutibus eius desserere.
What the difference is, between the pursuit of godliness and the pursuit of virtues, shall be discussed. But we must first give an account of the relationship between the soul and the body. For, until we have discovered what, in its essence, the soul is, we are not in a position to go on and treat of its activities.
Եփրայեցիքն զմարդն ի սկզբանէ խոստովանին ոչ մահկանացու եւ ոչ անմահ լինել, այլ ի միջասահմանն երկաքանչիւր բնութեանցն. զի եթէ մարմնոյն հետեւեսցի ախտից՝ անկցի եւ ի մարմնական փոխադրութիւնսն. իսկ եթէ հոգւոյն նախապատուեսցէ զբարութիւնս՝ անմահութեանն արժանաւորեսցի։ Քանզի եթէ ի սկզբանէն մահկանացու արարեալ էր զնա Աստուծոյ, ոչ արդեօք ի մահ դատապարտեալ էր զնա յետ մեղանչելոյն. քանզի զմահկանացու ի մահկանացութիւն ոչ ոք դատապարտէ։ Իսկ եթէ դարձեալ անմահ, ոչ արդեօք կերակրոյ կարօտ էր կազմեալ զնա. քանզի ոչ ոք յանմահիցն՝ կերակրոյ մարմնականի կարօտի. եւ ոչ էր այսպէս դիւրաւ ստրջացեալ, եւ զեղեալն անմահ՝ անդրէն մահկանացու արարեալ։ Քանզի եւ ոչ ի վերայ մեղուցելոց հրեշտակացն արարեալ երեւի զարս, այլ ըստ ի սկզբանէն բնութեանն անմահք մնացին, այլ պատիժ ակն ունել ընդունելով յանցանաց, այլ ոչ մահ։ Արդ լաւագոյն է կամ այսու յեղանակաւ իմանալ զառաջի եդեալ զբանս, կամ թէ մահկանացու կազմեցաւ՝ կարող գոլով յառաջադիմութենէն կատարեալ անմահ լինել, այսինքն՝ զօրութեամբ անմահ լինել։
Hebraei vero hominem in principio nec mortalem manifeste nec immortalem factum esse fatentur, sed in medio utriusque naturae ita quidem, ut si corporales imitatus fuisset passiones, corporalibus incideret permutationibus, si autem animae meditatus fuisset bona, immortalitate donaretur. Nam si in principio mortalem eum fecisset deus, nequaquam peccantem morte damnaret (nullus etenim mortalem mortalitate infestat), si vero iterum immortalem, nequaquam nutrimento eum indigentem crearet (nullum enim immortalium corporeo nutrimento indiget), neque sic facile paenituisset, sed factum immortalem confestim mortalem fecit. Neque enim in peccantibus angelis hoc apparuit factum, sed iuxta principalem naturam immortales permanserunt, aliam pro peccatis recipientes vindictam et non mortem. Melius est igitur aut hoc modo dionscere propositum, aut quia mortalis creatus sit, potens autem in procedenti perfectus immortalis fieri, quod est potestate immortalis.
The Jews say that man was created at first neither avowedly mortal nor yet immortal, but rather in a state poised between the two, in the sense that, if he gave himself up to his bodily passions, he should be subject to all the changes of the body, but that if he put the good of his soul foremost, he should be deemed worthy of immortality. For if God had made man mortal from the first, he would not have appointed dying as the penalty of his offence, seeing that no one would condemn to mortality someone who was already mortal. If, to take the other case, God had made man immortal, he would not have subjected him to the need of nourishment. No immortal being is dependent upon bodily food. We cannot suppose, either, that God created man immortal and then so lightly changed his mind and made him mortal. He did not, evidently, do any such thing to the angels that sinned. They remained immortal, according to their original nature. They look for judgement upon their offences, but in a form other than death. We had better, therefore, accept this account of the matter, or else suppose man to have been created mortal, but capable of becoming immortal when brought to perfection by moral progress; which is the same thing as being potentially immortal.
Quia vero non contulit ei ante perfectionem cognoscere suam ipsius naturam, prohibuit gustare lignum scientiae. Erant namque, potius et modo sunt virtutes in plantis maximae; tunc vero, ut in principio creationis mundi, purissimae existentes fortissimum exhibebant effectum. Erat igitur et gustatio cuiusdam fructus notitiam faciens propriae naturae et noluit eum deus ante perfectionem scire propriam naturam, ne cognoscens se ipsum indigentem pluribus corporali studerer usui derelinquens animae prescientiam. Et hac de causa prohibuit eum accipere fructum notitiae.
Until man had attained his perfection, however, it was not at all suitable for him to know how he was constituted. God, for that reason, forbade him to taste the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. In those days plants possessed singular powers. Rather, we might say, they do so still. Then, however, in the beginning of creation, virtues of plants had suffered no deterioration, and so were correspondingly powerful. Thus the mere eating of a certain fruit was then capable of imparting an understanding of one’s own nature. But God would not have man attain such knowledge prematurely. For, if man knew the whole extent of his physical indigence, it would draw all his concern towards the care of his body, and leave him none to spare for his soul. And that is why God forbade man to eat the fruit that gives such knowledge.
Sed transgredients et se ipsum cognoscens a perfectione cecidit et corporalibus necessitatibus egens factus est. Operimentum igitur confestim quaesivit. Dicit Moyses: ‘Sciens, quia nudus esset’. Prius autem in extasi fecerat eum et in ignorantia sui. Cadens igitur a perfectione cecidit similiter et ab immortalitate, quam postea accepit gratia creantis eum. Prius etenim a solis terrae fructibus eum satis habere iussit, quia haec erant in paradiso, sed deleta perfectione per ruinam necesse fuit subintrare gulositates.
Man disobeyed and learned the truth about himself. But, in so doing, he sacrificed his own advance towards perfection, and became the slave of bodily needs. Straightway, he set out on the search for something wherewith to clothe himself. Moses says that the man was naked, and now knew it, whereas, until that moment, God had caused him to be entranced with existence and happily unconscious of himself. When man lapsed from the way of perfection, he likewise lost the immortality which, by favor of his Creator, he is to recover at the last. After his fall, God gave him permission to feed on flesh, whereas, before his fall, God had assigned to him a sufficient diet wholly provided by things that grew from the soil. This, of course, was in paradise. But now that he despaired of perfection, man was, thereafter and in condescension, allowed to feed himself as he chose.
Իսկ վասն զի ի մարմնոյ է մարդ, եւ ամենայն մարմին ի չորից տարերց հաստատեցաւ, հարկ է ընդ այսոցիկ ախտիւք անկանել նմա՝ յորոց եւ տարերքս, փոխադրութեամբ եւ հատմամբ եւ հոսմամբ, որք են միայն մարմնոյ. փոխադրութիւնք ըստ որակութեան, իսկ հոսումն՝ ըստ թափման. քանզի թափի կենդանին ի ձեռն յայտից վտառից եւ անյայտից. յաղագս որոյ յետոյ ասասցուք։ Արդ հարկ է, կամ թափմանն՝ փոխանակ ի ներքս բերել հաւասարս, կամ լուծանել կենդանւոյն՝ կարօտանօք ի ներքս մտեցելոցն։ Չորին եւ խոնաւին եւ ոգւոյն թափեցելոյ՝ հարկ է չորին եւ խոնաւ կերակրոյ կարօտ լինել կենդանւոյն եւ ոգւոյն։ Եւ է մեզ կերակուր եւ ըմպելի ի ձեռն տարերցս՝ յորոց եւ հաստատեցաքս։ Քանզի իւրաքանչիւր է ինչ՝ որ ընտանեաւ եւ նմանեաւ կերակրի, եւ է ինչ՝ որ ի հակառակիցն ուրախանայ։ Իսկ տարերցս է ինչ՝ որ ի ձեռն միջնորդից ոմանց մատչիմք. որպէս ջուր՝ երբեմն ըստ ինքեան եւ երբեմն ի ձեռն միջնորդից՝ գինւոյ եւ իւղոյ եւ ամենայն խոնաւուտ կոչեցելոցն պտղոց. քանզի ոչ ինչ է այլ գինի, բայց միայն ջուր՝ յայգւոյ որակացեալ։
Et quoniam ex corpore est homo, omne autum corpus ex quattuor elementis consistit, necesse est eisdem subiacere eum passionibus, quibus et elementa: excisioni, permutationi et discursui, quae sunt solius corporis; permutationi quidem secundum qualitatem, discursui atuem secundum inanitionem. Exinanitur namque semper animal per manifestos poros et per immanifestos, de quibus postea dicemus. Necesse est igitur aut evacuates aequalia apponi aut animal dissolve indigentia introeuntium. Siccis vero existntibus et humidis et spiritu evacuates necesse est sicco et humido nutrimento indigere animal atque spiritu. Sed elementorum haec quidem per se, haec vero per quaedam media inferuntur, ut aqua quidem nunc per se, nunc vero mediante vino et oleo vel cunctis humorosis fructibus. Nihil enim aliud est vinum nisi aqua a vite facta.
As man is corporeal and the body is composed of the four elements, it follows that he is liable to all contingencies to which those elements are liable, namely scission, mutation, and flux, three things affecting the body only. By mutation we mean change of qualities, and by flux the evacuation of constituents. For, a living creature keeps passing off matter, through the visible orifices, and through others that are concealed, as well. These we shall consider later. Whatever is evacuated must, of course, be fully replaced, or the living organism would perish from the deficiency of replacements. Dry matter evacuated by a living creature must, of necessity, be replaced by dry food, moisture by wet food, and exhalations by corresponding inhalations. Our food and drink are made up of just those elements of which our bodies are composed. So, each living creature is nourished by taking in what accords with, and resembles, its constitution, and is cured by taking in their opposites. Some elements we take into the body just as they are, and others by the means of some vehicle. Thus, to gain moisture, either we drink plain water, or we imbibe it contained in wine, oil, or any of the kinds of fruit that we denominate moist. Wine is nothing other than water produced in the vine.
Similiter autem et ignem accipimus, nunc quidem per se ab ipso calefacti, nunc vero mediantibus quae comedimus et bibimus. In cunctis namque sive maior sive minor pars ignis conspersa est. Eodem quoque modo de aere; per se quidem utimur anhelantes et circa nos illum diffusum habentes et in comedendo et bibendo trahentes, per alia vero mediantibus omnibus aliis, quibus vescimur. Terram vero per se quidem nullo modo accipimus, sed per quaedam media. Terra namque fit frumentum et frumentum comedimus. Corniculae autem et columbae frequenter atque perdices terra cibantur, homo vero mediantibus seminibus et acruminibus atque carnibus.
In like manner, we take in the element of fire, it may be directly, by warming ourselves at it, or it may be my means of hot meats or beverages. In fact, there is a modicum of fire diffused through all comestibles, in greater or less degree. In like manner, again, we either breathe in air, directly, from the surrounding atmosphere, or we extract it from the various other things that we consume in eating or drinking. Earth, on the other hand, we never consume just as it is, but only as a constituent in this or that food. Thus, earth becomes wheat, and we eat the wheat. Larks, pigeons frequently, and partridges feed on earth, but man consumes earth only as a constituent of seeds, fruits or flesh.
Quoniam vero non solum per pulchritudinem, sed et per sensum tangibilem homo praecellit cunctua animalia, non circumposuit nobus corium grossum ut bubus et aliis huiusmodi, nec pilos magnos et spissos ut caprise t pecoribus et leporibus, neque spolia ut serpentibus et piscibus, neque cocleas ut locustis et cancris, neque pennas ut avibus. Necessario igitur sensibillitate eguimus superabundante in nobis amplius quam aliis natura dedisset.
Alike for dignity, and for the greater delicacy of his sense of touch (wherein man excels all other animals) God wrapped us neither in thick hide, like oxen and other leathery-coated beasts, nor in a long hairy covering, like goats, sheep, or hares, nor in scales, like snakes or fishes, nor in hard shells, like tortoises or oysters, nor in soft shell, like lobsters, nor in feathers, like birds. Perforce, therefore, we need clothes, to take the place, for us, of the covering with which Nature endowed the other animals.
Propterea igitur nutrimento et sensibilitate familiari necesse habuimus et non solum propter haec, sed ut feras fugeremus et qualitatum distemperantiam et dissolutionem continuationis corporis. Ideoque medicis et curatione opus habuimus. Nam permutation facta qualitatum necesse est per contrarias qualitates ad temperantiam reducere corporis constantiam. Non enim, ut quidam noverunt, calefactum corpus infrigdare simpliciter pertinent medicis, sed potius restituere ad temperamentum. Si enim infrigdetur simpliciter, in contrarium morbum deveniet dispositio.
These, then, are the reasons why we stand in need of food and clothes. And for the very same reasons, we need houses, not the least function of which is to afford us a refuge from the wild beasts. Further, because of disordered mingling of qualities, and of broken continuity, in the body, we require physicians and their art. When change takes place in some quality, we need to restore the balance by introducing the opposite quality, so as to bring the constitution of the body back to normal. The physician’s art is not, as some think, just to cool a fevered body, but to restore it to an equable temperament. For were one merely to cool a man in a fever, his condition would turn into the exactly opposite ailment.
Necessitas igitur fuit homini cibi et potus propter evacuations et diaphoresias. Sensibilitate quoque opus habuit, ut nullam naturaliter habeat fortem permutationem; domo vero opus habuit propter distemperantias aeris et propter feras; curatione autem propter permutationes qualitatum et sensibilitatem inditam corpori. Si enim non adfuisset nobis sensibilitas, non doleremus et non dolentes curationem non quaereremus et deleremur cum ignorantia mali passionem non sentientes.
So, therefore, man has need of food and drink, because of evacuation and perspiration; of clothes, because Nature provided him with no stout envelope; of a house to keep out the harsh weather and wild beasts; of healing, in view of changes in the qualities and internal feeling of the body. For if we had no such feeling, we should not suffer; and not suffering, should not feel the need of healing; and so, by not curing our ill, we should perish through not knowing that we had any.
Sed propter artes et disciplinas opus nobismet ipsis habemus adinvicem. Quia vero egemus adinvicem, in unum multi convenientes communicamus alterutris propter e aquae vitae sunt utilia in congregatione, quam congregationem et cohabitationem civitatem nominaverunt, ut de propinquo et non de longe auxiliaremur adinvicem.
Because of the arts and sciences and the useful things to which they lead, we have mutual need of one another. And because we need one another, we come together into one place in large numbers, and share with each other the necessities of our life, in common intercourse. To this human assemblage and cohabitation we have given the name of city. And therein we have profit one from other, by propinquity, and by not needing to travel.
A natura namque congregabile et vilie animal factus ets homo. Nullus etenim solus sibi sufficit in omnibus. Manifestum igitur, quod civitates propter commutations et disciplinas constitutae sint.
For man is a naturally sociable animal, and made for citizenship. No single person is in all ways self-sufficient. And so it is clear, how that cities exist for the sake of intercourse, and for the sake of learning from each other.
Բայց երկուքս այսոքիկ առաւելապէս ընծայեցան մարդոյ. քանզի սա միայն հանդիպի թողութեան մեղաց զղջացեալ, եւ սորա միայնոյ մարմին մահկանացու գոլով՝ անմահանայ. եւ մարմնականին՝ վասն հոգւոյն, իսկ հոգեկանին՝ վասն մարմնոյն հանդիպեցաւ։ Քանզի միայն մարդ ի բանականացն՝ առաւել ունի թողութեան արժանաւորիլ ի զղջանալն։ Քանզի ոչ դեւք եւ ոչ հրեշտակք զղջացեալք թողութեան արժանաւորին, եւ այսուիկ մանաւանդ արդարեւ ողորմած ցուցանի եւ ասի Աստուած։ Քանզի հրեշտակաց ոչինչ ունելով հարկեցուցիչ քարշելով ի մեղս, այլ ազատ գոլով բնութեամբ ի մարմնականաց ախտից եւ ի պիտոյից եւ ի հեշտութեանց, յիրաւի եւ ոչ մի թողութիւն տուեալ լինի ի զղջանալն. բայց մարդ ոչ միայն բանական է՝ այլ եւ կենդանի. իսկ պէտք կենդանւոյ եւ ախտք՝ յոլովակի քարշելով զբանականին զխորհուրդս. արդ յորժամ զգաստացեալ ի բաց փախչիցի յայսցանէ, եւ տարեալ լինի յառաքինութիւնս, ողորմութեան արդարացւոյ հանդիպի եւ թողութեան մեղաց։ Եւ որպէս իւր է բնութեան նորա ծիծաղականն, վասն զի սորա միայնոյ է ամենեւին եւ միշտ, այսպէս յորոց ըստ շնորհի՝ իւր է յամենայնի բանականացն ստացուածոց՝ ի ձեռն զղջման ի բաց մերկանալ զյառաջագոյնսն զյանցանսն. քանզի միայնոյ մարդոյ պարգեւի այս, եւ ամենեւին եւ միշտ, ի ժամանակի աշխարհիս կենաց. իսկ յետ մահուանն ոչ եւս։
Sed ex duabus his dignitatibus homo singulariter Honoratus est. Etenim solus veniam percipit paenitens (et huius solius corpus mortale existens immortale fit) et corpus quidem per animam, anima vero per corpus. Homo itaque rationalium solus singulariter habuit in paenitendo venia Dignum fieri. Nam neque daemones neque angeli paenitentes venia digni fiunt, ex quo maxime deus et iustus et misericors apparet. Angelis namque nullum habentibus compulsorium attrahens ad peccandum, sed naturaliter existentibus liberis a corporalibus passionibus et necessitatibus ac delectationibus iuste nulla concessa est venia ipsis paenitentibus. Homo vero, quia non solum est rationalis, sed et animal. Necessitates vero animalis sunt et passions merito frequenter collidunt rationem. Quando igitur exsurgens reliquerit haec et ad virtutes incesserit, donator venia iustae misericordiae. Et velut proprium est homini risibile, quia et soli huic inest et omni, sic secundum gratiam dei proprium est homini super omnem rationale creaturam absolve per paenitentiam a vinculis peccatorum.
Man has two choice prerogatives, which are as follows, and are shared by no other creature. Man, only, on repenting can gain forgiveness. And only man’s body, though mortal, is immortalized. This privilege of the body is for the soul’s sake. So, likewise, the soul’s privilege is on account of the body. For it is only man, among the rational beings, that has this unique privilege, of claiming forgiveness by repenting. Neither demons nor angels repent and are forgiven. In this fact, most particularly, God shows himself both just and merciful, and is so acknowledged. As for angels, seeing that there is no compulsion drawing them to sin, and that they are by nature exempt from bodily passions, needs, and pleasures, there is plain reason why they cannot claim pardon by repenting. Man, on the other hand, is not only rational but a living organism. The wants and passions of a living creature often distract his consideration. Afterwards, when he comes to his senses again, and, fleeing lust, returns to the way of the virtues, he obtains both justice and mercy in pardon. Now, just as laughter is a peculiar mark of man’s being, because it is something that pertains to him only, to every single man, and to all men at all times, so, in like fashion, it is peculiar to man that he, in distinction from all other creatures endowed with reason, should, by God’s grace, be released, upon repentance, from the guilt of former transgressions. This, too, pertains to man only, to every single man, and to all men at all times, while still living in this world, though not after death.
Similiter autem quidam angelos quoque volunt nequaquam post ruinam percipere veniam per paenitentiam, qui amors istorum est ruina, sed ante ruinam ad similitudinem vitae omnium dignos fuisse venia. Sed peccantes Dignam receperunt vindicate iustitiam perpetuam quidem et sine venia. Manifestum igitur ex his, quod, quicumque paenitentiam non acceperint, singulari dono proprioque hominis proscribuntur.
Some will have it that, in like manner, the angels have no more any place of repentance unto pardon since the Fall, seeing that the Fall took the place of death from them. Before the Fall, in what, for them, corresponded with man’s lifetime, angels also had a claim on pardon. But since they did not make good their claim, it remains that they receive the fitting sentence of punishment, without pardon and without end. These considerations make it clear that any who will not repent, renounce a gift unique and peculiar to man.
Peculiar also to man, and unique, so that man alone of living creatures enjoys it, for his body to rise again after death and enter upon immortality. It has this privilege on account of the soul’s immortality, just as the soul has the other privilege for the body’s sake, which is infirm and troubled by many passions.
Իւր են նորա եւ որքան ինչ արուեստից եւ մակացութեանց ուսմունք եւ ներգործութիւնք։ Վասն որոյ եւ զմարդն սահմանեն, Կենդանի բանաւոր, մահկանացու, մտաց եւ մակացութեանց ընդունակ։ Կենդանի՝ վասն զի եւ մարդն էութեամբ է շնչաւոր եւ զգայական. քանզի այս է սահման կենդանւոյն։ Իսկ բանաւոր՝ զի որոշեսցի յանբանիցն. եւ մահկանացու՝ զի զատցի յանմահիցն կենդանեացն. իսկ մտաց եւ մակացութեան ընդունակ՝ վասն զի ի ձեռն ուսմանց առլինին ի մեզ արուեստք եւ մակացութիւնք. ունին եւ զօրութիւն ընդունական եւ մտաց եւ արուեստից, իսկ զներգործութիւնս՝ ստացեալ յուսմանց։ Եւ ասեն զայս առդնիլ ի սահմանն յետոյ, ամբողջ գոլով եւ առանց այսորիկ՝ սահմանին։ Այլ վասն զի հարսունս եւ այլ ոմանս ազգս դիւաց ասեն ոմանք բազմաժամանակեայս, սակայն ոչ անմահս. եւ զի ի սոցանէ ի բաց որոշեսցեն զմարդն՝ յաւելին զմտաց եւ զմակացութեանց ընդունակն. քանզի ոչ ոք ի սոցանէ ուսանի ինչ, այլ բնութեամբ գիտէ զոր ինչ գիտեն, ասեն։
Proprium quoque est ipsi atrium disciplinarumque doctrinas addiscere artiumque opera exercere. Ideoque hominem diffiniunt esse animal rationale, mortale, mentis et disciplinae perceptibile: animal quidem, quia homo est substantia animata, sensibilis (haec est namque animalis diffinitio), rationale vero, ut separetur ab irrationabilibus, et mortale, ut dividatur ab immortalibus rationabilibus, mentis autem et disciplinae perceptibile, quia discendo inhaerent nobis artes et disciplinae. Nam habent potestatem perceptibilem et mentis et atrium, sed actum discendo atque studendo percipient. Sed dicunt hoc diffinitioni apponi superfluo; valere namque absque hoc diffinitionem volunt. Sed quia symphas et alia quaedam genera daemonum introducunt, longaeva quidem, sed non immortalita, ut et ab his dividant hominem, apposuerunt mentis et disciplinae perceptibilie. Nullum namque illorum addiscit, sed naturaliter novit, quae novit.
Further, it is peculiar to man to learn arts and sciences, and to practice the arts; so that man has been defined as a rational living creature, mortal, and capable of intelligence and knowledge. He is said to be a living creature because man is essentially ensouled and sentient, whereby he fulfils the definition of a living creature. He is said to be rational, in contradistinction to the irrational beasts, and to be mortal, by contrast with the immortal rational beings. And the phrase, “capable of intelligence and knowledge,” points to our being able to learn arts and sciences, since we have, indeed, a capacity both for intelligence and for arts, but only attain the practice of them by learning them. Some say that this phrase is an addition to the definition, which, as a definition, is sufficient without it. It is used because certain others have brought into the argument nymphs and suchlike minor deities that are credited with vast longevity, though not with immortality. So, to differentiate from man such beings, there has been added to the definition the words “capable of intelligence and knowledge”, since those beings are not supposed to learn, but to know whatever they know by gift of nature.
Իսկ Եբրայեցւոցն օրէնքն՝ զամենայն զայսոսիկ վասն մարդոյն եղեալ եւ մերձաւորապէս վասն նորա. որպէս զբեռնակիրսն եւ զեզինս առ ի յերկրագործութիւն, իսկ խոտ՝ վասն նոցա. քանզի յեղելոցն է ինչ՝ որ վասն ինքեանց եղեն, եւ է ինչ՝ որ վասն այլոց. վասն ինքեանց՝ բանականք ամենայն, իսկ վասն այլոց՝ անբանք եւ անշունչք։ Իսկ եթէ այսոքիկ վասն այլոց եղեն, վասն որոյ եղենն՝ տեսցուք։ Արդեօք վասն հրեշտակա՞ց. այլ ոչ ոք ի բարւոք իմացողացն վասն հրեշտակաց ասիցէ զայս լինել. քանզի վասն այլոց եղեալքն, ի հաստումն նոցա եւ վասն տեւողութեան եւ հանգստի եղեն. քանզի փոխանորդութեան ազգի սակս կամ կերակրոյ կամ բժշկութեան կամ օթեւանի եւ հանգստեան. իսկ հրեշտակք ոչ ինչ են յայսցանէ կարօտք. քանզի ոչ փոխանորդութիւն ազգի ունին, եւ ոչ կերակրոյ մարմնականի պէտս, ոչ հովանւոյ, եւ ոչ այլ ինչ իրիք։ Իսկ եթէ ոչ հրեշտակք, յայտ է թէ եւ ոչ այլ ինչ բնութիւն վերագոյն քան զհրեշտակս. քանզի որչափ գերագոյնն կայ, այնքան յաւէտ եւ անկարօտ է այնց ամենայնի։
Hebraeorum vero doctrina habet omnia haec propter hominem facta fuisse, velut subiugalia et boves pro terrae cultura, herbam autem propter boves. Eorum namque, quae facta sunt, haec quidem propter se ipsa facta sunt, haec vero propter alia: propter se ipsa rationalia omnia, propter alia vero irrationalia et inanimate. Si igitur haec propter alia facta sunt, propter quae facta sint videndum. Numquid nam propter angelos? Sed nullus sapiens dicet propter angelos ea facta fuisse. Quae enim propter alia facta sunt, ad consistentiam ipsorum et permanentiam et requirem facta sunt. Aut enim facta sunt causa habitaculi illius generis aut nutrimenti vel operimenti vel curationis sive deductionis vel repausationis. Angelus autem nullo horum indiget. Nam neque receptaculum habet generis, nec nutrimento indiget corporeo nec operimento nec aliorum aliquo. Si autem indiget, non erit angelus. Manifestum autem, quod pro nulla alia natura facta sint, quae angelis praemineat. Quanto enim plus praeminet, tanto plus nullo indiget.
It is a doctrine of the Jews that the whole world was made for the sake of man; some things directly for his sake, such as beasts of burden and oxen for farm work, while grass was made for provender for these creatures. Some things were made for their own sakes, and some for the sake of other things. All rational beings were created for their own sakes, while the irrational and inanimate creatures exist for the sake of others than themselves. Now if they exist for the sake of others, we must ask, What others? For the angels, perhaps? No man of sense could argue that! For things that exist for the sake of other things serve for the constitution, the continuance, or the restoration of those things; which is to say, either for the propagation of the species, or its nourishment, covering, cure, welfare, or recreation. An angel needs none of these things. For angels have no progeny, want no bodily food or clothing or any such requirement. Now if that is so for an angel, it is clear that it must be true of any super-angelic being. The higher the order, so much the less it needs.
Quaerendum igitur naturam rationale quidem, indigentem vero praememoratis. Quae igitur altera talis apparet praeter hominem? Colligitur ergo propter hunc facta fuisse irrationabilia et inanimata. Quia igitur, ut monstratum est, propter hominem facta sunt, ideo principem eum constituit. Sed principis officium est mensurato usu, quibus principatur, uti et non ad fatigationem vel laesionem ea indeficienter cogere nec graviter et intolerabiliter onerare. Peccant igitur, qui irrationabilibus non bene utunter. Nam nec opus faciunt principis nec iusti secundum quod scriptum est: “Iustus conservat animas iumentorum suorum.”
So we have to seek out some being whose nature is rational, which nevertheless requires to propagate its kind, and so on. If we leave man on one side, what other such nature can we find? It is to be inferred, therefore, that it is man for whose sake irrational living creatures and inanimate things were made. If, then, they were made, as has been shown, for man’s sake, that is why he was constituted lord over those creatures. A lord’s business it is to make a temperate use of whatever is under his authority, not to wax wanton and sate appetite with pleasure, nor to treat his subjects tyrannously or harshly. Such as ill-use the irrational beasts, sin, therefore, for they do not play the part either of lord or righteous man; as it is written, “The righteous man hath compassion on the life of his beast.”
Այլ թերեւս ասիցէ ոք՝ թէ ոչինչ վասն այլոյ ուրուք, այլ իւրաքանչիւր ոք վասն իւր եղեւ։ Ապա ուրեմն որոշեալ նախ զշնչաւորն յանշնչիցն, տեսցուք թէ կարիցե՞ն անշունչքն վասն ինքեանց լինել. քանզի թէ այնոքիկ վասն ինքեանց եղեն, զիա՞րդ կամ ուստի՞ կերակրեսցին կենդանիք։ Քանզի տեսանեմք զբնութիւն՝ բաշխելով կենդանեաց կերակուրս ի յերկրէ, պտուղս եւ բոյսս, բայց միայն ի յետնոցն ի մարմնակերացն։ Եւ այսոքիկ նոյն մարմնակերքս կերակրին ի կենդանեաց՝ որք ի յերկրի ճարակին, որպէս գայլք եւ առիւծք զգառինս եւ զայլ զկենդանիս։ Իսկ արծուիք՝ կաքաւս եւ նապաստակս եւ այլս այսպիսիս, որք զպտուղս երկրին ճարակին։ Քանզի եւ ձկանց բնութիւն՝ որք զմիմեանց ուտեն, այլ մնաց ի նոցանէն ճարակել եւ զմամուռ, եւ այլ ինչ որ ի ջուրս բոյսք։ Քանզի թէ էր ամենայն ձկանց ազգք մարմնակեր, եւ ոչ ինչ էր արտաքոյ յայսմանէ, ոչ արդեօք լինէր բաւական եւ ոչ փոքր ինչ, այլ ապականէր ոմանք ի միմեանց, եւ այլք ի կերակրոց նուազութենէ։ Իսկ վասն զի մի՛ այս եղիցի, ոմանք ի ձկանցն կազմեցան հեռի եւ մարմնակերութենէ, որպիսի ինչ ասիցէ ոք՝ զծովու բոյս ճարակիլ, զի ի սոցանէ եւ այլք ամբողջ պահեսցին։ Քանզի լինի սոցա կերակուր՝ մամուռն, իսկ նոքա՝ այլոց, եւ նոքա դարձեալ այլոց, որպէս վասն վերջնոցն կերակրոցն՝ աննիաղաբար յերկրայնոցն՝ որ ի ծովուն բաշխեալ, եւ այլոց գոյացութիւնն ամբողջ պահեսցի։ Արդ ուսոյց բանս զբուսոցն լինելութիւնն ոչինչ վասն ինքեանց, այլ ի կերակուր եւ ի հաստումն մարդկան եւ այլոց կենդանեաց եղեալ։ Իսկ եթէ այսոքիկ վասն մարդոյ եւ կենդանւոյ, յայտ է թէ այսոցիկ աճման եւ լինելութեան պատճառ՝ վասն այսորիկ եղեւ։
At iuste quis dicet nullum propter aliud, sed unumquodque propter se ipsum factum esse. Separemus igitur prius animate ab aninimatis et videamus, si inanimate possunt propter se ipsa facta esse. Si enim haec propter se ipsa essent, quomodo vel unde nutrientur animalia? Videmus namque naturam concedentem animalibus escas de terra et fructibus et plantis exceptis sarcophagis paucissimis, sed et his quidem in escam habentibus animalia terram pascentia, ut lupi et leones agnos et capras et cervos atque porcos vorantes, et aquilae perdices et phasianos et lepores et similia, quae fructus terrae sunt depascentia. Sed at piscium natura comestibilis adinvicem existens non se in omnibus extendit, ut omnes carnes comedant, sed defecit in comedentibus phykia et alia quaedam in aqua nascentia. Si enim essent omnia genera piscium sarcophagi, nequaquam vel ad modicum durarent, sed perderentur, haec quidem adinvicem, haec vero per nutrimenti indigentiam. Ut hoc itaque non fieret, quidam de piscibus factu sun ta carnibus abstinentes et, ut ita dicam, marina herbam pascentes, ut ex his et alii salventur. Sed horum voratores facti sunt qui vocantur phykia et hi quidem aliorum et hi alii iterum aliorum voratores existentes, donec pervenias ad ultimam terream escam in mari habitam aliorum substantiam salvantem. Manifestavit igitur ratio plantarum genus non propter se ipsum, sed ad nutrimentum et sustentamentum hominum et aliorum animalium factum. Si igitur haec propter hominem et animalia sunt, manifestum quod et causae generationis et horum incrementi propter haec factae sint.
But, like as not, someone will assert that there is nothing but was made for its own sake, and not for the sake of something else. Let us, then, separate inanimate from living things, in the first instance, and look whether inanimate things are likely to have been made for their own sakes. If they were so made, how or on what should living things be fed? For we behold Nature producing the nourishment of all animals (at least, if we except the carnivores), in the form of fruits and herbs, from the earth. And even the carnivores live on those animals that graze on the earth, as when wolves and lions devour lambs, goats, pigs or deer, or eagles raven on partridges, wood pigeons, hares, and suchlike creatures that feed on the fruits of the earth. It is of the nature of fishes to live on one another. And yet flesh-feeding does not extend to all of them, but we come in the end to fishes that feed on seaweed and certain other things that grow in the water. Had all types of fish preyed on others, and had none turned from a carnivorous diet, fishes would not long have endured, but would have died out, some destroyed by others, and some of mere starvation. So that that might not happen some fishes were so made as to abstain from flesh, and graze, so to speak, on sea-pasture while the others are kept alive by feeding on them. Seaweed is fodder for the one kind, which in turn forms the diet of the other kinds, and these of yet others. Thus, through the feeding of the basic orders of fish, provided to them without stint by the earthy flooring of the sea, the other types of fishes are kept going. Our argument has proved, therefore, that the creation of plants cannot have been for the sake of plants, but must have been for the nourishment and subsistence of men and other living creatures. And if they were thus made for the sake of men and other living creatures, it is evident that the means of growth and propagation of the latter is provided by the former.
Igitur et astrorum motus et caelum et tempora et pluviae et omnia talia propter haec facta sunt, ut cibis velut in circulo semper procedentibus indeficiens permaneat natura ferentium fructus, ut inveniantur haec quidem propter fructus condita, fructus vero propter animalia et hominem. Reliquum est igitur inspicere, utrum irrationalium natura propter se ipsam facta sit, an propter hominem.
Then, next, the motions of the heavenly bodies, the firmament, the seasons of the year, the rains, and all such natural processes, were therefore ordained so that the nature of the fruit-eating creatures might continue, and so the whole cycle of nourishment be provided without a break. We thus find that the celestial cycle is for the sake of the fruits of the earth, and these fruits are for the sake of living creatures, and, in the end, of man.
Reliquum est igitur inspicere, utrum irrationalium natura propter se ipsam facta sit, an propter hominem. Sed inconveniens est merito scientia expertia et ad placitum naturalem tantum viventia et ad terram deorsum incurvate servitiumque figura demonstrantia dicere propter se facta esse. Multis autem de his dictu necessariis existentibus propriaque conscription pro multitudine indigentibus non recipienda dispositione proposita pro verborum prolixitate ad brevia quidem et utilia perveniendum.
For the rest, we have to consider whether the category of irrational creatures was made for its own sake or for that of man. There is obvious absurdity in the suggestion that things incapable of purposeful cogitation, living solely by natural impulse, whose attitude bent down to earth indicates that they are slaves, should have been introduced for their own sakes. Much could fitly be said on this point; so much, in fact, as to call for almost a whole book to itself. But lest the volume of my argument get out of hand, I had best turn to a summary statement that nevertheless includes the chief points.
Si igitur in homine velut in imagine quadam inspexerimus, quae sunt exteriorum, per eam cognoscemus demonstrations facientes eorum, quae quaeruntur, essentiae. Videamus igitur in nostra anima irrationalitatem huiusque partes. Dico autem appetitum et furorem ad servitium data rationalitati et hanc quidem principantem, haec vero obsequentia et hanc quidem iubentem, haec vero iussa necessitatibusque, quibus ratio supposuerit, deservientia, ut salvetur secundum naturam homo. Quod si nostrorum irrationabilium rationale, quod in nobis est, dominator, quomodo non consequenter idem dominabitur exteriorum irrationabilium, ut ad necessitates ei data sint? Nam a natura est dispositum irrationale servire rationali, ut in nobis demonstratum est.
If, then, we look into the things of the external universe reflected in man as in a mirror, we shall be basing our demonstration upon the reality of the subjects of our enquiry. For we see that in the human soul there is an irrational element with its own characteristic functions; such, I mean, as appetite or anger. When a man is keeping the laws of nature, these irrational functions are given to him to be subservient to the rational, which is the ruler while they are the governed, which gives commands while they receive them and minister to whatever purposes reason dictates. Now if the rational in us bears rule over the irrational in us, why should we not conclude that reason also rules the irrational creatures in the universe outside us, and that they have been provided to serve its ends? For the irrational is naturally subject to the rational, as has been proved by introspection.
Եւ յայտնի է այսու եւ բազմացն կենդանեաց կազմութիւն առ ի սպասաւորութիւն մարդոյն եղեալ, եզինք եւ ամենայն բեռնակիրք առ ի յերկրագործութիւն եւ ի բեռնակրութիւն. եւ բազումք ի թռչնոց եւ ի ջրայնոց եւ ի ցամաքայնոց՝ առ ի վայելումն. իսկ զխօսողականսն իմն ի զուարճութիւն։ Իսկ եթէ ոչ ամենայն այսպիսեօք պիտոյիւք սպասաւորեն, այլ են եւ որք ապականեն զմարդն, գիտելի է թէ յառաջագոյն ընդ որովք վասն սպասաւորութեան եղեն. եւ այլքն ամենայն կարեւորք կազմեցան, զի մի՛ ինչ եղիցի պակաս յարարածս ի կարեւորացն լինել։ Եւ ոչ այսոքիկ ամենայն ամենեւին հեռի են ի մարդոյս օգտութենէ. այլ եւ ի վնասակարսն առ ի յօգուտ նմա նմա պտղաբերէ բան. քանզի վարի նոքօք առ ի բժշկութիւն, առ ի նոցայոցն վնասակարութենէ՝ այլոցն հիւանդութեանց յառողջութիւն. այսպիսիք իմն են թիւրակէքն կոչեցեալք՝ զոր բանն իմացաւ եւ կազմեաց, զի եւ նոցա՝ իշխանականն իշխեսցէ նոքումբք. եւ որպէս ի թշնամեաց ըմբռնեցելոց օգտեսցի, եւ նոցա զինովն զնոսա սպանցէ։ Եւ ունի մարդ բիւր զօրութիւնս հակառակ սոցա տուեալ առ ի յարարչագործութենէ՝ արգելուլ եւ վրէժս առնուլ, եւ յուղղութիւն ածել զդաւաճանութիւնս նոցա։
Manifestat autem hoc facture multorum animalium ad servitium hominum congrua facta. Boves namque et omnia iugalia ad agri culturam et ad ferendas sarcinas facta sunt, multa vero avium et aquatilium et terrestrium ad delectamentum, modulantes vero dulciter ad suavitatem et requiem. Quod si non omnia talibus utilitatibus serviant, sed quaedam etiam hominem destruant, sciendum, quod principaliter propter servitium facta sint, ut omnia convenientia sint creata nihilque desit in creatura, quod non sit conveniens. Neque haec omnino aufugiunt auxilium praestare hominibus, quia et venenosis ad proprium auxilium ratio utitur. Utitur namque ipsis ad curationem laesionum eorundem et ad medicamentum aliarum aegritudium, quales sunt thiriacae vocatae compositiones, quales adinvenit ratio, ut et ab ipsis eisdem oppugnentur et oppugnatis tamquam ab oppositis auxilientur. Sed et data sunt homini a creatore decem milia virtutum, his omnibus oppugnantium repellere et contrahere et annullare atque digerere subdolas eorum potestates.
This, and the creation of many kinds of animals adapted to provide service to man, such as oxen and all beasts of burden for farming and transport, the multitude of things that fly in the air or swim the seas or swarm upon dry land which prove to man’s advantage, and talking birds that serve for his delight and recreation, combine to put the conclusion beyond all doubt. If all creatures do not, on the other hand, have such pleasant uses, but there are some, even, that do man harm, we must know that when the animals intended to be useful to man were created, all other possible animals were also prepared, lest creation should lack anything possible. Neither do these creatures wholly avoid conferring profit on man, for reason turns the evidently venomous creatures to its own advantage. It makes use of them, for example, in curing the harm which they themselves have done, as well as to provide medicaments for other ailments, such as certain preparations called theriacs, which reason has discovered, wherewith to overcome these harmful creatures by their own products, so as to take spoils, as it were, from conquered foes. Man has, by grace of his Creator, myriad powerful antidotes to these kinds of harm, and such as can hinder, ward off, or correct, their assaults.
Sed quia aliis convenient utilitatibus, communiter omnia ad curationem hominis perficiendum nata sunt, etiam quae aliis usibus sunt inutilia.
Other animals are adapted to other needs. All kinds are at one in contributing naturally to the healing of man, even those that seem to serve no other human purpose.
Et haec quidem dicta sunt secundum modernam constantiam nostrae vitae. Nam secundum primariam nullum aliorum animalium ausum erat laedere hominem, sed errant ei omnia famulantia et supposita atque oboedientia, donec se retinuit a propriis passionibus et ab irrationalitate, quae in ipso. Non se autem retinens a propriis passionibus, sed contentus ab ipsis, digne obtentus est et a feris exterioribus. Cointravit namque peccato et istorum laesio.
Let so much be said as applicable to the present state of our life, seeing that, in the far-off beginning, no other living creature dared to do man harm. They were all slaves and subjects of his, and obedient, so long as he controlled his own passions and the irrational element within him. But when he did not control his own passions but was conquered by them, he was also easily overcome by wild things outside him. For together with sin there entered in also harm from these creatures.
Quod autem verum sit hoc, manifestum ex his, qui optimam vitam ducunt. Nam illaesi reperti sunt a ferarum rabie, ut a leonibus Daniel et Paulus a morsu viperae.
The truth of this is confirmed by the instances of those who have lived the best of lives. For these were seen to be, beyond all gainsaying, superior to the evil assaults of wild beasts; Daniel was superior, for example, to attack by lions, and Paul to the bite of an adder.
Արդ ո՞վ ոք արժանաւորապէս սքանչասցի ընդ բարետոհմութիւն այս կենդանւոյս, շաղկապողիս ընդ ինքեան զմահկանացուս ընդ անմահիցն, զբանականքս ընդ անբանիցն խառնողի, բերողիս յիւրում բնութեան ամենայն արարածոցս պատկեր, վասն որոյ եւ փոքր աշխարհ ասի, այսքան արժանաւորեցելոյ առ ի յԱստուծոյ նախախնամութեանն. վասն որոյ եւ ամենայն՝ եւ այժմուքս եւ հանդերձեալքն. վասն որոյ եւ Աստուած մարդ եղեւ, յանապականութիւն եւ յանմահութիւն փոփոխեալ յերկնից թագաւորութիւնն, ըստ պատկերի եւ ըստ նմանութեան Աստուծոյ եղեալք, Քրիստոսի կենակից եւ Աստուծոյ ժառանգ, ամենայն իշխանութեանց եւ պետութեանց գահերէցք նստեալք։ Եւ ո՞վ ոք արդեօք ասել կարիցէ զայսր կենդանւոյ զառաւելութիւն. ընդ լայնութիւն ծովու անցանէ, ընդ երկինս գնայ՝ տեսութեամբ, զաստեղացն շարժութիւնսն եւ զմեկուսութիւնս եւ զչափս նկատէ, զպտուղս երկրի եւ ծովու վայելէ, զգազանս եւ զկէտս արհամարհէ, զամենայն մակացութիւն եւ զարուեստս կանգնէ, հեռաստանէ ի վեռն գրոյ՝ ընդ որս կամի՝ խօսի, ոչինչ ի մարմնոյս խափանեալ, մարգարէանայ զհանդերձեալսն, ամենայնի իշխէ, զամենեսեան վայելէ. ընդ հրեշտակաց եւ ընդ Աստուծոյ խօսի. արարածոցս հրաման տայ, դիւաց սաստէ. զէիցս բնութիւն քննէ, զաստուածոյսն հարցափորձէ, տուն եւ տաճար Աստուծոյ լինել. եւ զայս ամենայն՝ առաքինութեամբք օգտի եւ բարեպաշտութեամբ։
Quis igitur digne miretur nobilitatem huius animalis colligantis in se ipso mortalia immortalibus et rationabilia coniungentis irrationabilibus, ferentis in sua natura omnis creaturae imaginem? Et propterea microcosmus nominator in tantum sublimatus a dei praescientia, ut propter quem deus homo factus est, pertingens ad incorruptionem mortalitatemque ignorans. In caelis regnat ad imaginem et simuilitudinem dei factus, cum Christo degit, filius dei est, omni principatui ac potestati praesidet. Sed quis enarrare valebit huius abundantes possessiones? Pelaga transit, caelum contemplando transcendit, astrorum motus et distantias ac mensuras novit, terram et mare usufructu possidet, feras et cete despicit, omnem disciplinam et artem et regulam dirigit, litteris quibus voluerit exponit, a corpore in nullo impeditus prophetat futura, omnibus principatur, omnia tenet, Gaudet in omnibus, angelis et deo loquitur, creaturae iubet, daemonibus imperat, existentium naturam disponit, deo cooperatur, domus et templum dei fit; et haec omnia per virtutes adquirit et beatitudinem.
When we consider these facts about man, how can we exaggerate the dignity of his place in creation? In his own person, man joins mortal creatures with the immortals, and brings the rational beings into contact with the irrational. He bears about in his proper nature a reflex of the whole creation, and is therefore rightly called “the world in little.” (microcosmos) He is the creature whom God thought worthy of such special providence that, for his sake, all creatures have their being, both those that now are, and those that are yet to be. He is the creature for whose sake God became man, so that this creature might attain incorruption and escape corruption, might reign on high, being made after the image and likeness of God, dwelling with Christ as a child of God, and might be throned above all rule and all authority. Who, then, can fully express the pre-eminence of so singular a creature? Man crosses the mighty deep, contemplates the range of the heavens, notes the motion, position, and size of the stars, and reaps a harvest both from land and sea, scorning the rage of wild beasts and the might of whales. He learns all kinds of knowledge, gains skill in arts, and pursues scientific enquiry. By writing, he addresses himself to whom he will, however far away, unhindered by bodily location. He foretells the future, rules everything, subdues everything, enjoys everything. He converses with angels and with God himself. He gives orders to creation. Devils are subject to him. He explores the nature of every kind of being. He busies himself with the knowing of God, and is God’s house and temple. And all these privileges he is able to purchase at the cost of virtue and godliness.
Sed ne videamur nimis accurate in laudem hominis prorumpere et naturam non exponere secundum quod proposuimus, hic sermo est claudendus. Sed maxime naturae abundantias dicentes naturam ipsam exponamus.
But we must not let ourselves appear to any to be making, out of place, a panegyric on man, instead of a straightforward description of his nature, as we proposed to do. Let us, therefore, intermit, at this point, our discourse on man; albeit we are discoursing on his nature while we are recounting his prerogatives.
Videntes igitur, quantam ingenuitatem percepimus et quod planta sumus caelestis, ne degeneremus a natura, ut talibus donis non appareamus indigni, neque nosmet Ipsos privemus tanta potestate et gloria atque beatitudine et ne pro modico tempore brevique delectation omnium sempiternorum amittamus Gaudium, sed per bona opera et abstinentiam malorum et rectam intentionem, cui maxime divinum cooperari solet, nec non et frequenbtibus orationibus ingenuitatem conservemus.
Knowing, then, the nobility of which we are partakers, and how we are “a planting from heaven,” let us do nothing that would put our nature to shame, or publish us as unfit to be the recipients of so great a bounty. Let us not cheat ourselves of all this power, glory, and blessedness by bartering the enjoyment of all eternal things for a brief season of pleasure that cannot last. Let us, rather, safeguard our high standing by doing good and eschewing evil, and by keeping before us a good aim, whereby divine grace is specially wont to be invoked; and, of course, by prayer.
De his igitur sufficient haec. Sed quia hominem ex anima esse et corpore praecedens sermo proposuit, prius de anima incipiamus, derelinquentes ea, quae valde sunt subtilia et difficilia plurimisque inquirentibus ignoata.
So much concerning man’s high estate. But the common saying has it that man consists of soul and body. Therefore let us treat first and definitively of man’s soul, avoiding over-subtle and dry investigations and all problems too hard for the man in the street to understand.