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5888Re: [neoplatonism] Prometheus Trust 2013 Conference - Restoring the Soul

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  • John Uebersax
    Jan 14 10:20 AM
      Congratulations, Tim, on choice of an excellent and timely theme for this year's conference!

      In an interesting example of synchronicity, literally one moment before opening and reading your message I had written the following for a young colleague:

      philosophy = love of truth and wisdom -> purification of will (humility) and purification of understanding (suspension of judgment) -> spontaneous development of ability to 'see' (noesis) subtle workings of inner mind = maturation and integrity of subtle inner mind = self-actualization, 'likeness to God', immortality.

      A second synchronicity is that, following Dennis' yearly philosophical offering, I had wanted to reciprocate by drawing attention to a rather remarkable philosophical poem (considered by some the best specimen of that genre in English), which perhaps a few members (like me) had not previously encountered.  It is 'Nosce Teipsum', by Sir John Davies:


      The second part of this charming and brilliant work is titled, Of The Soule of Man and the Immortalite Thereof.  Some verses:

      Since Nature failes us in no needfull thing,
         Why want I meanes my inward selfe to see?
         Which sight the knowledg of my self might bring,
         Which to true wisdome is the first degree.

      That Power which gave me eyes the World to view,
         To see my selfe infus'd an inward light;
         Whereby my Soule, as by a mirror true,
         Of her owne forme may take a perfect sight,

      But as the sharpest eye discerneth nought,
         Except the sunne-beames in the ayre doe shine;
         So the best Soule with her reflecting thought,
         Sees not her selfe without some light divine.

      O Light which mak'st the light, which makes the day!
         Which setst the eye without, and mind within;
         'Lighten my spirit with one cleare heavenly ray,
         Which now to view it selfe doth first begin.

      John Uebersax

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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