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phaedrus   



consorts with wantonness, and is not afraid or ashamed of pursuing

pleasure in violation of nature. But he whose initiation is recent,

and who has been the spectator of many glories in the other world,

is amazed when he sees any one having a godlike face or form, which is

the expression of divine beauty; and at first a shudder runs through

him, and again the old awe steals over him; then looking upon the face

of his beloved as of a god he reverences him, and if he were not

afraid of being thought a downright madman, he would sacrifice to

his beloved as to the image of a god; then while he gazes on him there

is a sort of reaction, and the shudder passes into an unusual heat and

perspiration; for, as he receives the effluence of beauty through

the eyes, the wing moistens and he warms. And as he warms, the parts

out of which the wing grew, and which had been hitherto closed and

rigid, and had prevented the wing from shooting forth, are melted, and

as nourishment streams upon him, the lower end of the wings begins

to swell and grow from the root upwards; and the growth extends

under the whole soul-for once the whole was winged.

During this process the whole soul is all in a state of ebullition

and effervescence,-which may be compared to the irritation and

uneasiness in the gums at the time of cutting teeth,-bubbles up, and

has a feeling of uneasiness and tickling; but when in like manner

the soul is beginning to grow wings, the beauty of the beloved meets

her eye and she receives the sensible warm motion of particles which

flow towards her, therefore called emotion (imeros), and is

refreshed and warmed by them, and then she ceases from her pain with

joy. But when she is parted from her beloved and her moisture fails,

then the orifices of the passage out of which the wing shoots dry up

and close, and intercept the germ of the wing; which, being shut up

with the emotion, throbbing as with the pulsations of an artery,

pricks the aperture which is nearest, until at length the entire

soul is pierced and maddened and pained, and at the recollection of

beauty is again delighted. And from both of them together the soul

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