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phaedo   


imperishable, and our souls will truly exist in another world!

I am convinced, Socrates, said Cebes, and have nothing more to

object; but if my friend Simmias, or anyone else, has any further

objection, he had better speak out, and not keep silence, since I do

not know how there can ever be a more fitting time to which he can

defer the discussion, if there is anything which he wants to say or

have said.

But I have nothing more to say, replied Simmias; nor do I see any

room for uncertainty, except that which arises necessarily out of

the greatness of the subject and the feebleness of man, and which I

cannot help feeling.

Yes, Simmias, replied Socrates, that is well said: and more than

that, first principles, even if they appear certain, should be

carefully considered; and when they are satisfactorily ascertained,

then, with a sort of hesitating confidence in human reason, you may, I

think, follow the course of the argument; and if this is clear,

there will be no need for any further inquiry.

That, he said, is true.

But then, O my friends, he said, if the soul is really immortal,

what care should be taken of her, not only in respect of the portion

of time which is called life, but of eternity! And the danger of

neglecting her from this point of view does indeed appear to be awful.

If death had only been the end of all, the wicked would have had a

good bargain in dying, for they would have been happily quit not

only of their body, but of their own evil together with their souls.

But now, as the soul plainly appears to be immortal, there is no

release or salvation from evil except the attainment of the highest

virtue and wisdom. For the soul when on her progress to the world

below takes nothing with her but nurture and education; which are

indeed said greatly to benefit or greatly to injure the departed, at

the very beginning of its pilgrimage in the other world.

For after death, as they say, the genius of each individual, to whom

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